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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys,

We got the ferry last week from Plymouth to Santander, from there we drove on to the Costa Blanca.

Due to a delay on the motorway in Devon somewhere due to animals on the road, we were stuck there for an hour. This meant that we weren't able to charge before we got on the ferry, we got in with about 45% battery.

When we came off the ferry in Santander, I used electromaps to find the nearest fast charger on the motorway. We get to a Repsol 50kwh charger, the electromaps fob or app doesn't work. I then realise that by default, electromaps brings up all the chargers in Spain, you can have to select on the app which ones work with their app and fob.
We tried to download the Repsol app and set that up, we couldn't register because the app wouldn't accept a UK phone number, it only accept phone numbers from about 6 countries which they operate in. So we decide to go to the next town where there are more chargers to give us more options.

We arrive at Bilbao where we hit rush hour traffic. We manage to find another Repsol charger that does work with electromaps. When we arrive there's a Mercedes sprinter ambulance charging, we have to wait 30 mins. When we plug in to the 50kwh, the max speed that we get is about 30kwh. It's only one charger, it's not shared.

At the hotel on the stop over, they had a 2 pin plug for us to plug the granny charger into. Overnight we managed to go from 30% - 80%. The hotel didn't tell us before hand that there is a cost for using this socket, they charged us €13.50. I paid this without question because they were an older couple running a B&B and they really took care of us, we were the only guests there. I did mention to them that we didn't get a full charge in the domestic socket, other hotels have a EV charger installed.
The hotel that we're staying at on the way back costs €2 per hour during the day and €1 during the night to use their charger.

On to the villa that we're staying at, we booked this before covid for 2020 when were planning on flying there. This year when we decided to drive, I asked the middle aged British woman who lives in Spain and manages the villa if it would be possible to charge on the socket here. She told me that electricity is very expensive here, I asked if I could use it as a back up if I can't use public chargers, she said yes.
On our arrival she told me not to use the villa as electricity is so expensive, I offered to pay extra for the electric. She then fed me a load of lies about how Spanish houses are not wired very well and that it could overload the circuit or start a fire. I told her that I could turn the amps down on the car so that it draws less power than fridge. She didn't understand it, she has preconceived ideas about electric cars and didn't want to listen to logic.

So we try to use the public charging network here in a small town. We go to one at the supermarket, it's managed by a company called Elec Charge, I try to download the app, I can't find it on the app store, I think it's a Spanish app and only shows if you have your language set to Spanish. I called the company, they tell me that their chargers also work on another app called Place to plug. The next day we go back and get it working.

Close by to our villa is a nice hotel and restaurant with a Tesla destination charger, I called up to book lunch and asked about the charger. Said told me that it's €20 to use the charger. I said that I'd only be there for a couple of hours and it's a slow charger. She was just on reception and didn't understand much about it.

For the next few days we try various chargers. We find that often the charger will say 22kwh, when we charge the max that we get is 11kwh. One day a charger is working, the next day we go there, it's out of order.

In a paid car park, there is a free Tesla destination charger, again that says 22kwh, only charges at 11kwh. These free chargers are used quite a lot by Spanish locals, most of the EV's that I've seen here are company owned. I don't think that many chargers are installed in peoples homes and businesses here.

The sum it up, the attitudes are 5 - 10 years behind the UK, the public charging network is tricky to use and unreliable. I don't see much of a shift happening here anytime soon, it will be several years. I'm sure things are better in Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia, the rest of the country will take time to catch up.
 

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Hi guys,

We got the ferry last week from Plymouth to Santander, from there we drove on to the Costa Blanca.

Due to a delay on the motorway in Devon somewhere due to animals on the road, we were stuck there for an hour. This meant that we weren't able to charge before we got on the ferry, we got in with about 45% battery.

When we came off the ferry in Santander, I used electromaps to find the nearest fast charger on the motorway. We get to a Repsol 50kwh charger, the electromaps fob or app doesn't work. I then realise that by default, electromaps brings up all the chargers in Spain, you can have to select on the app which ones work with their app and fob.
We tried to download the Repsol app and set that up, we couldn't register because the app wouldn't accept a UK phone number, it only accept phone numbers from about 6 countries which they operate in. So we decide to go to the next town where there are more chargers to give us more options.

We arrive at Bilbao where we hit rush hour traffic. We manage to find another Repsol charger that does work with electromaps. When we arrive there's a Mercedes sprinter ambulance charging, we have to wait 30 mins. When we plug in to the 50kwh, the max speed that we get is about 30kwh. It's only one charger, it's not shared.

At the hotel on the stop over, they had a 2 pin plug for us to plug the granny charger into. Overnight we managed to go from 30% - 80%. The hotel didn't tell us before hand that there is a cost for using this socket, they charged us €13.50. I paid this without question because they were an older couple running a B&B and they really took care of us, we were the only guests there. I did mention to them that we didn't get a full charge in the domestic socket, other hotels have a EV charger installed.
The hotel that we're staying at on the way back costs €2 per hour during the day and €1 during the night to use their charger.

On to the villa that we're staying at, we booked this before covid for 2020 when were planning on flying there. This year when we decided to drive, I asked the middle aged British woman who lives in Spain and manages the villa if it would be possible to charge on the socket here. She told me that electricity is very expensive here, I asked if I could use it as a back up if I can't use public chargers, she said yes.
On our arrival she told me not to use the villa as electricity is so expensive, I offered to pay extra for the electric. She then fed me a load of lies about how Spanish houses are not wired very well and that it could overload the circuit or start a fire. I told her that I could turn the amps down on the car so that it draws less power than fridge. She didn't understand it, she has preconceived ideas about electric cars and didn't want to listen to logic.

So we try to use the public charging network here in a small town. We go to one at the supermarket, it's managed by a company called Elec Charge, I try to download the app, I can't find it on the app store, I think it's a Spanish app and only shows if you have your language set to Spanish. I called the company, they tell me that their chargers also work on another app called Place to plug. The next day we go back and get it working.

Close by to our villa is a nice hotel and restaurant with a Tesla destination charger, I called up to book lunch and asked about the charger. Said told me that it's €20 to use the charger. I said that I'd only be there for a couple of hours and it's a slow charger. She was just on reception and didn't understand much about it.

For the next few days we try various chargers. We find that often the charger will say 22kwh, when we charge the max that we get is 11kwh. One day a charger is working, the next day we go there, it's out of order.

In a paid car park, there is a free Tesla destination charger, again that says 22kwh, only charges at 11kwh. These free chargers are used quite a lot by Spanish locals, most of the EV's that I've seen here are company owned. I don't think that many chargers are installed in peoples homes and businesses here.

The sum it up, the attitudes are 5 - 10 years behind the UK, the public charging network is tricky to use and unreliable. I don't see much of a shift happening here anytime soon, it will be several years. I'm sure things are better in Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia, the rest of the country will take time to catch up.
So quite a challenging holiday for you. Thanks for the heads up about Spanish charging experiences. Hope you have a calmer rest of summer.
 

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The sum it up, the attitudes are 5 - 10 years behind the UK, the public charging network is tricky to use and unreliable. I don't see much of a shift happening here anytime soon, it will be several years. I'm sure things are better in Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia, the rest of the country will take time to catch up.
It's actually not too bad here.

It seems that you'd have been fine if you had agreed up front that you could charge at the villa.

I have used Repsol chargers before, without trouble. I don't remember a problem with signing up.

Next time book a villa that's not in the boondocks or near a shopping mall with destination charging.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Why can't the Model 3 charge higher than 11kw?

I've had the car for 2 years and I've had my leaf for 2 and a half. There's so much to learn, this past week has been a steep learning curve for me.

I still don't see how the average driver is going to learn all of this. I've often spoken to people who don't understand how a petrol car is different to a diesel and some people don't even know if their car is front wheel, rear wheel or 4 wheel drive. How they are going to learn everything about charging an EV is beyond me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
It's actually not too bad here.

It seems that you'd have been fine if you had agreed up front that you could charge at the villa.

I have used Repsol chargers before, without trouble. I don't remember a problem with signing up.

Next time book a villa that's not in the boondocks or near a shopping mall with destination charging.
If you live in Spain, you probably have a Spanish mobile number. I couldn't find a way to register on the app with a UK number, it would only accept mobiles from the countries that Repsol operate in. The charger didn't take card either.

Agreed on the villa, that would have saved us a load of hassle. But I have learned a lot about the public chargers, they are a nightmare, all managed by different companies and often they are not under any shade and in tight parking spots.
 

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Why can't the Model 3 charge higher than 11kw?

I've had the car for 2 years and I've had my leaf for 2 and a half. There's so much to learn, this past week has been a steep learning curve for me.

I still don't see how the average driver is going to learn all of this. I've often spoken to people who don't understand how a petrol car is different to a diesel and some people don't even know if their car is front wheel, rear wheel or 4 wheel drive. How they are going to learn everything about charging an EV is beyond me.

Because it only has three 16 A OBCs, It uses two in parallel on single phase to get 32 A (~7.4 kW) but on three phase it uses all three at 16 A per phase to give around 11 kW. This is mentioned somewhere in the spec for the car.
 

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Not that many EVs have three phase on-board chargers, and some that do only offer 3 x 16 A, like the Tesla Model 3, or the I-Pace. The main exception when it comes to a high power AC charging capability is the Renault Zoe, that offered 3 x 63 A three phase charging for a while (~43 kW) but now offers 3 x 32 A (~22 kW), which is still pretty useful.
 

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If you live in Spain, you probably have a Spanish mobile number.
I don't actually.

But Spain is just like the UK, a myriad of different networks which all work slightly differently.

It seems like the Tesla chargers were working fine, you were just confused about how long it might take to charge. Not sure why a four hour lunch was unacceptable on holiday.

I had no idea about that. It doesn't seem to be common knowledge about the car.

There's so much to learn with EV's.
You didn't notice the Leaf could only charge at only 6 kW?
 

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How they are going to learn everything about charging an EV is beyond me.
It's really no different to charging a mobile phone.

You need to have the right cable for your phone - lightning or USB-C or micro-USB. The USB socket that you plug it into will be able to supply a certain amount of power (2.5W on USB 1, up to 12W on USB Legacy charging, 20-30W on Qualcomm QC3/QC4, 20-50W on various iterations of Oppo VOOC/Oneplus Dashcharge, 20-30W on USB-PD) depending on what charging standard(s) your phone supports and what charging standards the supplying socket/charger can support. Some require a specific cable to be used (eg Oneplus Dashcharge must use the OP cable AND OP charger to work).

The general populace seems to manage just fine on keeping their phones charged.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
It's really no different to charging a mobile phone.

You need to have the right cable for your phone - lightning or USB-C or micro-USB. The USB socket that you plug it into will be able to supply a certain amount of power (2.5W on USB 1, up to 12W on USB Legacy charging, 20-30W on Qualcomm QC3/QC4, 20-50W on various iterations of Oppo VOOC/Oneplus Dashcharge, 20-30W on USB-PD) depending on what charging standard(s) your phone supports and what charging standards the supplying socket/charger can support. Some require a specific cable to be used (eg Oneplus Dashcharge must use the OP cable AND OP charger to work).

The general populace seems to manage just fine on keeping their phones charged.
Charging at home is very similar to charging a phone. But once you go to the public charging network it's a whole different story, for many of them you need to download an app and create an account, you need to find the chargers, sometimes they are out of order, sometimes they are in use, sometimes they are ICE'd, there are different speeds so you need to plan how long you are going to charge for. This is nothing like charging a phone, what are you talking about?
 

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If you live in Spain, it's feasible to travel with an EV. But it requires having a plan A, B and C as well as a plethora of apps and cards. It's very true. I am travelling from the south of Andalucia to the Pyrenees in a couple of weeks and it's pretty doable, but it's not a no-brainer. It is improving though at a reasonable pace. I guess there will be a shakeout so a couple of players will survive. Hopefully they'll converge onto paying by credit card and then this country might be considered a part of Western Europe. Spain is and never has been a country that's in the forefront of anything. EV charging is no exception.
 

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I would listen to the host re Villa charging. Electrical infrastructure isn’t the same as here, they pay for connection capacity as well as usage. It’s not uncommon for some properties to only have a 3.3kw grid connection to keep costs down. So it wouldn’t cause a fire, but you’d hit issues very quickly if you also had things like AC or an oven on.

We’re very lucky that we can get 100A fuse upgrades and still pay per unit.

Last time I drove through Spain I took the petrol and kept an eye out for chargers, very rare sight compared to places like Germany or France.
 

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At least the rapid chargers mainly work in Spain, unlike those in France.
Hmmm. If you go to Electromaps and filter on rapid chargers, I'd say about 1/3 show up in red. So yes, they mainly work, but there's a fair chance you find yourself in a fix.
 
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