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Discussion Starter #1
I'm thinking of doing a long trip this weekend in my i3 (150 miles e/w). Given the dearth (ie total non-existence) of CCS chargers, it's a good job I have REx as well as the DC port!

Theoretically, I could do it all on one charge and one tank. In reality, I'll be refuelling at least once given that we'll be four-up and on the motorway - and the passengers are cold-sensitive types (wife & daughters).

My only worry is how I'm going to charge at my destination. It'll be a 3 pin effort - which is no problem as we're not in a rush. However, I'll be needing an extension lead to run through a letter box or out of a window. It's a terrible bodge, of course, but it should work. I'll watch it all for a while to check nothing's warming up (and uncoil the cord).

Any suggestions (links?) for meaty extension leads that I can pick up at a mainstream local B&Q, Halfords etc?
 

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I'm not sure why the experts are not encouraging the use of an RCD device?
I use this one with an integrated RCD device - sorry it won't embed!
http://www.diy.com/nav/fix/electrical/extension-leads/Masterplug-1-Socket-Heavy-Duty-Extension-Lead-with-Safety-RCD-15m-CT1513P-ILRCD-MS-10549106
I've had a cable reel melt-down and wouldn't have another reel!:mad::mad:
The owner may know what is good practice for a cable reel - but these things are often borrowed (used by other family members)? I rely on the RCD to isolate the EVSE where it is - not relying on someone else indoors reporting the switch/plug status! The extension cable is almost invariably wet (morning dew?) but proposed unit does not have that PROOF that power is truly off - before you touch anything! This unit has a nice switch and a doll's eye indication or give you security before you handle wet components. Admittedly the socket in not waterproof; however, I have a heavy duty poly sleeve that covers the EVSE itself and the connection.
 

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OK - I'm not an electronics engineer, but I have been a 'safety engineer'. Kevin is right to say the socket is not waterproof however in my 'rig' (as I said) is encapsulate in a poly sleeve and never opened during connection/ disconnection. For full weather integrity I would recommend a suitable 'enclosure' - but I couldn't recommend the IP 44-standard (as proposed). Such connections should be to IP56 (I read). B&Q have been slated for marketing IP44 as waterproof, when by definition it is only 'splash proof'!
As a boater I can assure you that electricity and water are a lethal combination and we deal with it daily, when cruising. A car extension cable will be just as wet as hosing it for an hour! It should ring alarm bells if it 13 amp / 240 volts or more!
Lastly - I recommend that you write yourself a procedure for connecting and disconnecting the cable connections and doing the switch operations. Make sure they are followed precisely - don't get casual with wet hands while standing on wet grass!
 

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For full weather integrity I would recommend a suitable 'enclosure' - but I couldn't recommend the IP 44-standard (as proposed). Such connections should be to IP56 (I read). B&Q have been slated for marketing IP44 as waterproof, when by definition it is only 'splash proof'!
Type 1 EV connectors are IP44 "splash proof" when plugged in and therefore offer the same level of protection as the proposed B&Q solution (actually IP54 when 13A plugged in and cover closed).

I agree that for many professionals IP44 is inadequate but the cars seem to disagree :)
 

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Definitely my last word! The 13 amp plug and the attached EVSE are invariably hung vertically on a wall. There is a large measure of shelter, ventilation and drainage by gravity!
An EVSE on an extension cable is unlikely to have any of those 'mitigations'. The EVSE and its connections are more than likely to be left flat on the ground - mitigations effectively eliminated!
If you not qualified and experienced then - if in doubt 'over specify and over engineer' AND follow a strict 'safety procedure'!:cool: "Hanger Doors to shut"!
 

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Same b and q reel here. Note you Must uncoil COMPLETELY before use... The reel instructions do say this is require for a draw above 6A. The reel has never failed me regardless of weather.
 

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the dri-box is what I used to use before I had my Polar thing fitted. I had a big commando plug at the end of some steel wire armoured cable, and I made an adapter lead, using heavy duty cable (blue 16A stuff from B&Q). It was a bit of a faff, especially in the rain, so I bought a waterproof 13A socket (Masterplug) and replaced the ordinary socket with that, then left it fitted to the 10A EVSE the car came with. I still have that, along with another adapter I made with a smaller commando plug to waterproof socket in a bag with the 10A EVSE in the boot as my emergency charging kit.
 

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I've used that B and Q extension cable for over a year now. It's spot been spot on and doesn't seem to get too hot, obviously when fully unwound.
 

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At the end of the day isn't it plugs and wires? Correct me if I'm wrong but everyone charges on the end of very long extension cable from the sub station to their house or charger.
No it isn't the same. The wire from the substation is installed by people that know what they are doing and it is unlikely that they will install a wire that is grossly under-rated and so burn your house down.

This phrase "just plugs and wires" is absolutely true but it hides the fact that the plugs and wires we use must be correctly rated and in good condition for it to be safe. If you do it correctly then yes, of course it is safe, but it is also a fact that a lot of people don't understand even the very basics of electricity and could easily get it wrong. That is where the real danger is... not in doing it... but doing it wrong.
 

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@Paul Newport I think it's clear that the electrical industry, standards bodies, and EV manufacturers don't want drivers using extension leads or adapters. AFAIK it isn't illegal today because it isn't written into law but I suspect it will be at some point in the future.

It's also clear that many EV drivers do use extension leads and/or adapters and assume responsibility should anything go wrong.
 

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It would be better if TPTB instead of an outright (but safer for them to say) NO, instead published a specification. Conductor number, size, cable length etc. exactly the same as they do for the "professionals" in BS7671 to follow.

The people who install cables in substations roads and houses don't KNOW what they are doing they are only following other peoples published and accepted advice.

Any law covering what you do in your own home will never be accepted as it would be impossible to enforce. You may do what wiring you wish at home, it is only when the house is sold, or an insurance claim, that proof of quality is needed.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Crumbs - I hadn't meant this post to trigger demands that TPTB do anything - let alone start banning stuff!

Anyway, the good news is it all worked fine - and no one died even once, if I recall correctly.

I didn't get round to buying my own cable so had to had to use the ancient scrappy thing of unknown provenance that my parents keep stashed in a cobwebby cupboard under the stairs. A rudimentary visual inspection found it to be thickish and lacking in abrasions, taped-up fixes or other horrors. Plug contained a 13A fuse - but the socket end was a sealed mystery so it got a close watching. I figured that dodgy connections knocked up in a shady Chinese sweatshop by overworked children were most likely to be found here.

Fortunately, I had an external socket to use so now feeding cables through letterboxes or windows. This gave added reassurance that any hot failure would (most probably) be outside the house. The external socket, cabling to consumer unit and the unit itself are all new so I was more sanguine about the domestic wiring than the extension cable.

On arrival, I plugged everything in (EVSE to extension, extension to mains and, finally, EVSE to car) and it all started charging. I gave it 10 minutes and started checking for warm patches - nothing at all.

And next morning despite a rain shower and and utterly inadequate protection from the elements of both the extension socket and the EVSE box, nothing went wrong and I had a full charge.
 

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Good to see you got a full charge. I had to use an extension lead last week as Evie had to stay out of the garage. I just ran all the cable off the reel to stop it heating of the coiled cable warming the rest of the reel. All worked fine 100% charged in the morning. Those nippers at the sweat shop make great extension cables !
 
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