Speak EV - Electric Car Forums banner

1 - 20 of 59 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,040 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I heard from my dealer than Vauxhall have teamed up with British Gas to supply Home Charging Units.

Can I urge you to think carefully before signing up. I am not saying you shouldn't necessarily, it is a good quality unit from ChargeMaster and BG do a good job of installation.

However, it is expensive! There are Home Charging Units available for less and with better styling in my opinion (may be not yours!!!) and to get it fitted is usually about £100 from a qualified electrician.

You can charge using the supplied cable from a 13A socket in the meantime so you won't be left with no way to charge.

Take a look at Rolec. They supply power posts for caravan sites, marinas etc and have experience designing and supplying this kind of kit.

WARNING: Please, it may look like you can use any 13A socket to charge the Ampera and you can providing you take some care to ensure that the socket and the power circuit you use can take the load. I know 10A is under 13A so it looks on the surface as if all 13A sockets should be fine. 10A continuous is a big strain on a 13A socket so it must be in good condition. Old sockets or circuits will heat up and there is a potential fire risk if the socket and circuit are not in good condition.

It is strongly recommended that even if you dont get a home Charging unit that you get a new, separate socket and circuit installed for use by the car. This should not be on the ring but a new circuit with its own breaker at the consumer unit. It isn't expensive (aroiund £100 for me) and might save your house!

If you are using the charging cable on an old socket then set the charging rate to 6A instead of 10A just to be safe.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
I also found the same, BG quoted me 1500GBP for the charger and fitting, if I were Vauxhall id tell BG to stop making my brand look bad by ripping off my customers...

cheers

g
 

·
Militant EV driver!
Joined
·
4,934 Posts
Hi all,

I was quoted £335 + VAT for the official GM Voltec home charger by my Ampera representative at Eden Poole. With the 10% discount available from Vauxhall's site, that would be £361. Much better value.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
I was quoted the same from Skurrays. Firstly they said they could only supply to an electrician. After I explained that it would be installed by an electrician they tried to order it and said it is on a long lead time, maybe very long. They are still trying but seem to be getting no where. I will post again once I make further progress.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
just had my home charger fitted by BG, very good job. they spent all day here running armoured cable under my drive etc. 799 pounds + 58 pounds for an earth spike. i also get all the electrics in my house covered for 3 years under their electrical homecare cover. Good value for money and would recommend to anyone..... :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
138 Posts
I did have BG round to give me an estimate but they would only honour the £799.00 offer if the charge point was sited IN the Garage not outside. Not a great deal of use really as I already have to run the supplied charge cable under the garage door.

The engineer suggested to mount it outside would need a whole section of the (newly) block paved drive to be dug up to locate a ground pole and that might cost circa £2,000.00.

Needless to say I passed on that!

I'm still waiting for the local council to release details of their updated "Plugged in Places" grant scheme which I'm promised will be very appealing. They told me it was "nearly ready" almost 2 months ago and I would be one of the first to be advised. Good job I didn't hold my breath!

Big Paul
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,040 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
If I remember correctly the PiP grant scheme is a grant to installation. You should be able to choose your own supplier on that scheme.

Some areas are doing 50% grant and others 100%.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
138 Posts
Milton Keynes are offering "Up to 75% support" for supply & installation of what they refer to as smart chargers but I can't get them to explain what they actually mean by the term. They refer to a number of the suppliers of Home chargers but suggest they are "agnostic" as to which supplier I should choose.

By Smart Charger, I think they mean a charger that records all sorts of charging details (current, consumption times etc) but if they also need SIM card functionality so it can call them and relay that info I think it might prove too expensive even with the 75% support.

I guess I'll have to wait and see.

Big Paul
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,715 Posts
I thought you might be interested in my charging equipment. This is used both at home and when traveling. I built a Type 2 ("mennekes") Charging Station that can switch from 6A to 63A to charge my Tesla. In the photo you will also see a 32A Type 2 to Type 1 ("J1772") cable and an adaptor for converting J1772 to the Tesla. With this equipment I can charge on any 'simple' socket, and all commercial Type 1 and Type 2 Charging Stations :D

I also have a 70A Type 2 to Tesla cable that I take along when I know 63A Charging Stations are available... this cable is heavy so I leave it at home most of the time.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
My apologies if this has been covered elsewhere.

I am going through the process of buying an Ampera and have spoken to both Vauxhall and British Gas. The BG engineer has just left the house after checking the electrics but has left me puzzled. He said that the charging lead that comes with the Ampera is 4m long and the home charging unit that BG fit has a 5m cable. However, Vauxhall have told me the cable in the car is 6m and that the home charging unit cable that BG fit can be tailored to the customer's requirement up to a length of 10m. The latest e-mail from Vauxhall says that they are looking into this for me and will come back with a definitive answer.

In the meantime I would be grateful if someone with a home charging station could provide the answer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Its not going well thus far. Having heard nothing further from Vauxhall, I called back today. The person I had previously spoken to had left an enquiry with the "Ampera Specialist" but no response, so he gave me their number to try myself. I spoke with them and they said they would look into it and call me back this afternoon but I've heard nothing. Anyone know how long the cable is on the Home Charging Unit that British Gas fit?

I would really love to be driving an Ampera but need to know I can get an 8m cable for hassle free charging before I take the plunge. If anyone has any tips on how to achieve this they would be gratefully received.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,040 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Have you spoken to Rolec? I don't know for certain but they are just the sort of people who might make you up a charge unit with a cable length of your choice.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,576 Posts
I'm curious why it needs to be so long... Tell me to mind my own business if you like :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Thanks for the suggestion about Rolec, I'll give them a call tomorrow. Their website suggests that the units come with 3m or 5m charging leads but perhaps they can customise.

The question about the need for 8m is a valid one. My house has a short concrete "drive" about 7m long ending at the garage door but because the way the house is built, on a hillside below street level, the drive is on a steep downward incline that stops at the garage door and is quite narrow and so not terribly functional. I've got a small car at the moment and its a real hassle getting up and down into the garage (I've damaged a wing mirror trying) and so I prefer to park on the street across the top of the drive. The nearest point to place the charging unit or a socket is just inside the garage door and so the cable would need to be 8m long to pass under the garage door and up on to the street. I could make do with the 6m cable plugged into a dedicated socket just inside the garage door but it means parking the car nose down on the steep incline and struggling to get out the door cause of the foliage on the side of the drive. I would then need to reverse up the slope to get the car back onto the street (although the reversing camera would make it easier). Hope that gives a bit of insight and thanks for the responses.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,040 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
ewanh, I am very worried by your last post. Are you saying that you would park on a public road and then plug the car in from the house?

Charging an EV from the house when on a public highway is not at all a good idea... even as a one-off let alone regularly.

Please do not charge an EV on the street from the house.

If you can only charge when on the street then any kind of plug in car is not suitable for you until you can have access to proper public on-street charging.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
I note your concern Paul.

At the top of my "drive" there is no pavement and no reason for anyone to pass on the inside of the car. To do so means pushing past a bush. When the car is parked the passenger door opens onto the drive and the driver's onto the road. However, if with your experience charging the car in this way is likely to present a public hazard then the options are to park nose down on the drive to charge the car or stick with petrol cars for now. Maybe I should post some photos to make things clearer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,040 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
ewanh, it is certainly not for me to tell you what to do. All I would say is that charging an EV on a public highway from a house is something that is very much discouraged. I certainly wouldn't do it unless I absolutely had to (which would never be the case with an Ampera as we have a petrol generator) and only then with extreme caution.

You must make up your own mind if it is safe and whether you might be at risk of prosecution or other legal action. I would not consider it safe if people can walk by or if the cable had to cross any public rights of way such as a path. You could end up in all kinds of trouble IMO :)
 
1 - 20 of 59 Posts
Top