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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So the local charging station is at a Driving school and I went to unplug and the one of the instructor says.." You are going to ruin the battery and and cause a spike in charge because you did not power off the Charger prior to disconnecting the gun". I didn't think this was the case? This public ClipperCreek charger doesn't have a power on/off switch and is always on. I pulled up the Volt manual and I don't see any official process to plug/unplug. Has anyone hea
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rd of this?
 

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The plug in cable only passes either 120v or 240v ac to the car after a brief interrogation with the charger. Unplugging the cable does the same thing as turning off a light switch. The charger in the car also has spike protection devices on the ac input to clamp peaks caused by a disconnect of the cable during charging. It should not cause problems unplugging it. The circuit designers should be slapped if they ever design an ac interface that can't withstand interruptions without latching components.
 

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It is almost like the SAE (Society of Automotive Engineering) engineered and designed it to be as safe as possible! (and as others have said, pressing the button to unlock the charging cable from the vehicle disconnects power before you can unplug it.

If you have an illuminated charging port, you can even see it in action. Pressing the button lights up the charge port (ie, the car knows you did something) even if you never remove the cable.

-Charlie
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
As a new Volt owner its fascinating how much others think they know about it but have never owned one. I have friends all trying to give me advice on how to make the battery last longer..."Make sure you don't charge it every night", "Make sure you let it go to 10% and then charge", "Make sure you use the 110v charger as its better for the batter", etc, etc. :)
 

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Perhaps what the instructor was thinking about is the use of a portable EVSE, such as the one that came with the car. The sequence in which these should be plugged into each end of the cable is important... always plug into the wall outlet first and into the car last, and unplug from the car first and from the wall outlet last. (Some users do not unplug the unit from the wall socket if the normal charging opportunity is done at home.)

My understanding is there are safety circuits associated with the connection point where the EVSE is plugged into the car for recharging. These circuits are there to make sure the current does not start flowing for recharging until the connection has been established, and the current stops flowing before the connection is broken, allowing the EVSE to be removed safely from the car. This prevents arcing and helps make it safe to charge the car in wet weather, etc.

The safety mechanism means you can’t cause a spike when you unplug from the car end of the EVSE, nor when you then unplug from the wall socket after you have unplugged from the car.
 

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As a new Volt owner its fascinating how much others think they know about it but have never owned one. I have friends all trying to give me advice on how to make the battery last longer..."Make sure you don't charge it every night", "Make sure you let it go to 10% and then charge", "Make sure you use the 110v charger as its better for the batter", etc, etc. :)
I wonder how many owners follow horrible advice like that vs. just using the car normally without worry and charge it whenever available/reasonable.

So far, that's been the coolest thing for me - I can geek out and hypermile, watch power screens, etc. and my wife can just turn it on and drive it like any other car. It works just fine either way.

-Charlie
 

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The car is smarter than the instructor. The manual is blessed by the car's engineers and has the correct answer.
Yea, the instructor is an idiot. How does he figure the driver is going to shut off a public charger before unplugging the car? As soon as you press the trigger on the SAE J1772 connector the car knows what's going on.
 

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As a new Volt owner its fascinating how much others think they know about it but have never owned one. I have friends all trying to give me advice on how to make the battery last longer..."Make sure you don't charge it every night", "Make sure you let it go to 10% and then charge", "Make sure you use the 110v charger as its better for the batter", etc, etc. :)
Heh. It sounds like great advice, for NiCads. :)
 

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As a new Volt owner its fascinating how much others think they know about it but have never owned one. I have friends all trying to give me advice on how to make the battery last longer..."Make sure you don't charge it every night", "Make sure you let it go to 10% and then charge", "Make sure you use the 110v charger as its better for the batter", etc, etc. :)
Have you have heard that you will burn your garage down if you charge it inside? Or how 38 miles (on EV) is useless? Or how the Prius gets better gas mileage? Or what a pain it is to have to plug it in every night?

🤦‍♂️
 

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I thought the pilot pin was shorter in length then the A/C power pins and the charger in the car would stop as you pulled out the plug is the latch on the gen 2 part of that signal path ?
 

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Well, the instructor was partly correct. If the car is charging, with 230v passing thru the socket, it is best to hold the release button in for a few seconds until the charging statiion de-energizes. Then when the plug is removed, no arcing can happen. If the car is full, or in charge delay, the station is idle and no high voltage is passing thru. Pulling the plug when 'hot' can cause arcing at the socket which will eventually cause issues with the carbon buildup that occurs.
 

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it is best to hold the release button in for a few seconds until the charging statiion de-energizes.
The J1772 standard specs a maximum of 100ms for the AC disconnect time of an EVSE when it detects a plug removal. The same 100ms max delay for stopping current draw from an on board charger is also required. You are safe without any extra effort. Push the switch, pull the plug, no worries. 100ms is faster than you can blink.

-Charlie
 
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