Speak EV - Electric Car Forums banner

1 - 20 of 50 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
596 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Guide to Ampera charging.

I thought I might put together a guide to charging Ampera at home and in the wild.

1/ Ampera charging system
The Ampera supports a J1772 charging system, with a capacity of 16A or 3,3Kw, this means it does not support DC charging and takes about 4 hrs to charge from empty @ 16A.

A full charge takes about 12Kwh of electricity.

2/ The 'Granny' charger
The charger that comes with the car is known as the 'Granny' charger, it has a 3 pin mains plug and a type1 J1772 plug for the car.
There are two setting on the granny 6A and 10A in the early cars ( pre 2013 ) there is a switch on the charger to select 6A or 10A on the later cars 6A or 10A is selected on the charging screen in the car.
NB ( before using 10A setting check your socket and wiring as the plug / socket can get hot enough to catch fire if not in good condition, if in doubt get an electrician to check before plugging in or use 6A) Also note that the 10A setting needs to be selected everytime its used.
'Granny' charging takes between 6 and 12hrs from empty

3/ Home chargers EVSE
Home chargers come in two basic types with two capacities:

16A or 32A capacities
32A future proofs your installation, 32A is the most your electricty supplier will allow you to have at home, this is based on the capacity of the local electricity network and the fusing at 80A of 100A per property ( in the UK )

Tethered or un-tethered
A tethered cable is hardwired into the charger unit and needs an electrician to change it, an untethered cable usually has a Type 2 plug and charger socket into which a type 2 to type 1 cable attaches.

Installation of the charger
Many are designed to be installed outside so they are waterproof, if you can arrange it install the charger in a sheltered spot so you can plug in when it's wet.
It will need an electrician to install it.

4/ How charging works
J1772 is the name of the protocol that controls the charging process.
a) The car controls the charging
b) The 'charger' is really just a mains switch, all that's inside is a protocol controller and a mains relay
c) A timer in the car can be used to delay the start of charging for use with economy 7 and other low cost overnight electrical services.
d) Some home chargers are network enabled and can delay or reduce output to the car for local grid load balancing

let's look at charging from the cars perspective:

a) ready to charge, open the charge port ( Select 6 or 10A later cars using the granny charger ONLY )
b) Power on charger EVSE or granny
c) Plug in
d) If deleayed charging is being used car waits for internal timer or extrnal EVSE power.
e) The car uses J1772 to tell the charger how much current it will take from it
f) Charging starts ( short horn beep )
g) Charging stops ( flashing green light )
h) The car uses J1772 to tell EVSE to stop charging.

5/ Stopping charging
Charging can be stopped at any time by disconnecting the charge cable.

6/ Charging away from home
Destination charging

This is when you are able to charge at your destination either by a 3 pin with the Granny or another EVSE
for example go to work plug granny into 3 pin charge all day return home to charge again. There are portable chargers that can deliver 16A from a suitable AC outlet.

Charging at other locations
Ampera supports AC only charging, so there are options either 3 pin or type 2 AC charging posts or other publc infrastructure. To take advantge of this you need a type 2 to type 1 cable. ( about £120 ) or a type 2 socket to type 1 plug adaptor (about £100)
Some of the charge points are free, some are paid for need to be activated by RFID card or App, there is no nationally enforced standard system yet.
ZAP map allows you to see all the charge points in your area and you can get details of status and what connections are available.

It depends on your situation at the time as to the usefulness of charging away from home.NB the cost of charging can be significantly more than at home.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
138 Posts
add to 3): The car can draw 16A from the home charger, so it will charge faster compared to granny charger

you can also buy a portable charger capable of 16A
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,607 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,508 Posts
...
d) The car uses J1772 to tell the charger how much current it will take from it
e) Charging starts ( short horn beep )
f) Charging stops ( flashing green light )
g) The car uses J1772 to tell EVSE to stop charging.

...
Protocol Correction:
d) the EVSE tells the car how much the max supply current available is. The car decides how much to use up to that.
g) the car stops charging and the EVSE disconnects the AC after a short timeout. The car can tell the EVSE it wants zero current like when it is waiting for delayed start, and the EVSE will disconnect the AC supply until the car decides it wants to start.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,627 Posts
type 2 AC 22kw charging post
This might give an impression the Ampera is limited to the 22kW ones for newcomers, The amp will run on all the fast AC posts and the slow type as well.
The type 2 ac posts that are available are 3.5kW, 7kW , 11kW (3 phase 3.5kW) and 22kW (3 phase 7kw) most seem to be 7kW ones round here with some 3's very few 11 or 22 ones.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
58 Posts
This might give an impression the Ampera is limited to the 22kW ones for newcomers, The amp will run on all the fast AC posts and the slow type as well.
The type 2 ac posts that are available are 3.5kW, 7kW , 11kW (3 phase 3.5kW) and 22kW (3 phase 7kw) most seem to be 7kW ones round here with some 3's very few 11 or 22 ones.
This is actually good to know and has cleared up something for me. I actually almost charge exclusively on public charge points and needed to know if the fast charge ones could be used with my type 2 to type 1 cable(at the usual max rate the Ampera demands). So thanks for clearing that up.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
411 Posts
My car is MY 2012, black granny charger with 6/10A button on the granny itself. I have the timer set in the car so I can use E7, set to finish at 730am. My usual method is:- plug in, car beeps twice that means it's waiting for the timer. If I want to charge immediately then I plug into the car then unplug and then plug in again straight away, this procedure overrides the timer, the car beeps once and charging starts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
596 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
That's a good question:
The sequence for normal charging is;
1/ plug in, if the charger (EVSE) is on you get the orange indicator while the car tells the charger how much current it will take, checks for welded contators etc
2/ indicator turns green short beep charging starts

I'm not sure if it stays on if you are using the cars delayed charging feature to exploit economy 7 i'm sure someone can commnent on that, i don't use it.

If it's staying on then there is most likely a problem somewhere in the charging system and the car can't get to ready to charge. ( See J1772 protocol for details of how it works between car and EVSE)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
411 Posts
If you have set up the delayed charge then you get 2 beeps and the green light flashes until charging starts then the green light goes solid.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
If Mark has the all black Granny Charger with just 2 lights an orange and a green, then when the 13amp socket is switched on the orange light should come on briefly, then change to green. I had this problem when we bought our Amp in August 2017. If you switched the charger on and off several times, it would eventually go green and stay on, then you could plug it into the car.. Fortunately it was replaced under warranty, as it is a Voltec part. Car is MY2012, and had about 38000 miles on clock. Apart from that it's wunderrrfull dribble dribble.
What does an orange charge light indicator mean?

M
 
1 - 20 of 50 Posts
Top