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2020 I-Pace S
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137 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I've posted several times about how happy I am with Level 2 charging at home because of the convenience and my local rate of 1 cent per kWh. I've seen several threads about Level 2 charging but they're either about a specific charger or about Level 2 charging generally, but none about which chargers people are using, whether they are happy with the unit they have, and why. For my purposes Level 2 charging is absolutely brilliant. Plug in overnight with a timer set, charge from 11:05p - 6:55a during the week and 24hrs over the weekend, and wake up to plenty of range. Having to use DC Fast chargers recently during work my wife had done to the house that blocked off the Level 2 charger just reinforced for me the ease of use and low cost of having that charger on the wall in the garage.

I watched a ton of YouTube videos about charging when I was considering an EV. I found a guy in NJ that seems to take the whole process the most seriously, and Level 2 in particular. His channel is called State of Charge - https://www.youtube.com/c/StateOfChargeWithTomMoloughney. I also watched a ton of videos about installing chargers. After all that research I concluded that I wanted to have a local electrician do the installation because I wanted my charger on a 60amp dedicated circuit. I have 150amps coming into the main breaker and had enough capacity to handle it. I know our I-Paces charge at 7.68 which is 32amps on a 240 volt circuit but I wanted to future proof the charging station as I am not the only driver in the house. I also came to the conclusion that I wanted a smart charger with a good app. Since I was going to place it inside the water intrusion rating (IP67 or IP 68) was less of a concern. What is a concern is UL listing. I found it odd that not all chargers are UL listed given the amount of power they deliver - mostly overnight. Finally, I wanted it hardwired in place as the addition of a plug seems to only add a very small bit of versatility (we're not moving any time soon) and adds another potential failure point.

After reviewing all the sources and coming up with my wish list I reviewed a ton of products and found that our friends in the UK have a lot of choices that are smarter and more flexible that are not available in the US. However, ultimately the ChargePoint Home Flex rose to the top of my list. It met all my criteria. Then I went in search of getting one below MSRP. The $749 price put it near the top of the list from a cost standpoint. I was fortunate enough to have had a conversation with a Georgia Power executive a year or so ago and recalled that they said GA Power has a deep commitment to supporting EVs. So, I went to their website to see if they had a program (got money back on my old refrigerator when we replaced it with an energy-star model) and they did. Georgia Power will give you $250 back on a level 2 charger if you are a residential customer - better yet they have 6 models that you can buy directly from them and get the $250 taken off the top. No one else I could find was discounting the Home Flex. So, I got it shipped to me for $499 plus tax. Sweet.

Installation was a bit of a hassle as I wanted to put the unit between the two garage doors in the dead space between the rails. I came to that conclusion when I watched several videos of people putting theirs on one side of the garage and then having to go through gymnastics to get the cable across to the other side, not be able to charge cars in the driveway, etc. My Ipace isn't going to have a cable dragged across its paint!

Wood Fixture Gas Electrical wiring Brick
Wood Electrical wiring Electricity Fixture Gas
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Between the doors, with a 23 ft cable, means that I can charge either side of the garage and both the parking places in front of the garage doors from the single unit. It added around $500 in conduit and labor to the cost of the job but I thought it would pay off in the long run - it already has several times as my wife had the delivery people put all the flooring on my side of the garage for storage for a week or so and I was able to charge easily in either outside parking place.

So, how has the Home Flex been for the past 5 months? In one word: Outstanding. I did have to put a repeater in for WiFi coverage but I had planned to do that for the IPace itself so that updates of the software would be smoother. The unit has performed flawlessly. I get 7.68kWh delivered overnight from the unit with a very flat charging curve. Initialization and programming were easy. The app works like a champ and the data management is excellent. The LED (Green in the photos) is also a huge plus IMHO - its easily visible across the garage unlike some other units and its brightness is adjustable in the app too. Oh, and the attachment point for the J1772 connector is also brilliant. It swings up when empty to make locking the unit in place when done easy but it then swivels down with the weight of the plug and cable to make it more out of the way. I'm still fiddling with the cable management but overall - love it.

So, what was your process, which one did you choose, and are you happy with it?
 

Premium Member
2020 I-Pace S
Joined
137 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Nice writeup, thanks doc! My experience has been very similar. Except for the $0.01 / kWh, did you reeeeaaalllly have to gloat about that again 馃槅

I bought a 'used' ChargePoint unit exactly like yours from a previous forum member 3 years ago and had a very similar installation experience. The unit has been great. I've also recently started to use ChargePoint units at work, and they've been almost flawless. Actually I'm amazed how easy it is to just use the app to connect and be charged (pun intended).

At a friend's cabin I use a "dumb" Mustart cable. That thing is a champ too, never had an issue, but it doesn't have connectivity functions .. which is fine.
Sorry, but yes ;)

Good to know about the Mustart. They make a portable Level 1/2 charger that is reasonably priced which might be a nice cable to replace the standard JLR Level 1 that came with the car.

What models at work? Did the business think to do it or did you ask/suggest?
 

Premium Member
2020 I-Pace S
Joined
137 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
@Docrwm We have almost identical setups. My Flex is mounted between the garage doors and it鈥榮 worked out great for us as well. I have also been pleased with the flex itself and the ChargePoint app. There used to be a public ChargePoint EVSE in my office park so it was nice to be able to manage home and occasional office charging in one place (though that charger is now sadly defunct).

With respect to cable management one thing I did that鈥檚 worked really well is mount angle brackets between the wall and garage door tracks to prevent the cord from falling into the gap and being pinched by the door.
View attachment 7187

Thanks! I may well borrow that once all the renovation issues I am fixing :rolleyes: are dealt with at the house. If you don't mind my asking - what was the cost for the L-brackets? I like the infinite mounting hole arrangement on them.
 

Premium Member
2020 I-Pace S
Joined
137 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
P.S. Another reason I wanted to avoid a plug-in with a NEMA 14-50 or other plug arrangement was two fold. First, my co-coach from Robotics is an electrical engineer (and long-term Tesla owner) and he told me that most of the NEMA 240v outlets are only rated for short-term use and not for 6-9 hours of continuous high-load use. Dryer runs for 140m and then is off until you run it again, etc. I found several reviews online that said the same except for one brand that is not plastic but is melamine but they cost $150 these days. Second, I found a number of videos that showed failed 240v plugs and the conclusion from the master electrician was that most would fail sooner rather than later in EV applications and that they need to start making 240v plus specifically for EV use that are rated for long-term operation at full capacity to avoid meltdowns and fires.


 

Premium Member
2020 I-Pace S
Joined
137 Posts
Discussion Starter · #27 · (Edited)
Benefit to a plug in wall box is it is easily replaced. I am on my 3rd LVL 2 after 9 yrs. Just lift and unplug, done - and no extra point of failure with a plug.
Sorry to hear that you have had to replace twice in 9 years. A plug is ALWAYS an extra point of potential failure as opposed to a directly wired connection. In your case I'm guessing you meant that it was not the plug that failed for your chargers.
 

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2020 I-Pace S
Joined
137 Posts
Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Cost on installation apparently varies wildly across the US. Some of it is where you are. Some of it is where you want the charger relative to your panel. Some of the variation is due to how much work the panel requires to install the circuit. In my case the panel had to be rearranged to allow for a 60amp circuit to be added, we had to run a long length of conduit and cable to reach the location I wanted, and I wanted the work certified for home owners insurance requirements. I've used my electrician for several jobs in the past 10 years and know he's both competent and competitive financially. All those factors increased the cost of the installation to $1500.
 

Premium Member
2020 I-Pace S
Joined
137 Posts
Discussion Starter · #32 ·
I鈥檝e been quite happy with my Grizzly. The 28ft cords are nice. I wanted longer cords for more freedom of charging but two cords mean extra cable management. It comes with two holsters as well.

I would take a picture but right now my half of the garage is full of stuff and the Jag is parked outside. Good thing the cord reaches all the way outside!
That was me a couple of weeks ago. Just glad the new floors are in and the painting is done!
 
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