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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Last week we held a conference at the local University (Nottingham Trent). So being somewhat cheeky, I spotted they had a charger on Zap Map available for visitors, so I went about finding out how to use it.

If I'm honest it was the closest parking space, rather than the need to charge that was the main driver for this. The other reason was to check the viability for other EV users who may be travelling further than I, if we were to use the same venue again.

After a few phone calls between head of car parks, head of security, and finally head of sustainable transport (David Hobden), I managed to get the code to the barrier and arranged to pick up a charge card (apparently a Plugged in Midlands card will work, but TBH I haven't got one as I can't see the point. Ecotricity and ChargeMaster are the only two I really need.)

So I pitched up at the site, picked up the card and found the 2 charge bays. Speaking to David one is frequently used by the on site electric van, and the other rarely used..

Now the fun of getting the Tesla to charge starts. Plug in, flashing lights all looks good. Then I get "stopped charging" almost immediately. Unplug, try again, same problem :(
By this time I had to go, so I left the car plugged in, and tried from the phone app to kick off a charge, but no joy :(

I had exactly the same symptoms with my first portable EVSE charger. My new one with updated firmware seems to work fine.

The University were very early adopters of EVs here (running a fleet of Axiam Mega Multivans) So I suspect the chargers are pretty early units too. Maybe this is leading to the incompatibility issues?

Has anyone else found this with their Model S ?


* Edited to correct Kangoo to Axiam
 

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There is that possibility I know that there were differences in the handshake between my 6.6 LEAF AND 3.3 ones which can result in failed initialisations:

I have a client who adopted 3 series BMWe and while LEAFs can charge I cannae

I have on one occasion had a charge where release was not possible - cue manuals, screwdrivers and swearing
 

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Yes, I kept having this problem, on Ecotricity, Chargemaster and GMEV (Manchester) charge points and probably some others. I find that reducing the charging current to 31A stops it from cutting out. I suspect the car and the EVSEs disagree slightly on how much 32A is.

I noticed that a few of these charge points are now only offering 31A. Not sure if this is an across the board change, or just for Teslas after Tesla drivers kept reporting stalled charging sessions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yes, I kept having this problem, on Ecotricity, Chargemaster and GMEV (Manchester) charge points and probably some others. I find that reducing the charging current to 31A stops it from cutting out. I suspect the car and the EVSEs disagree slightly on how much 32A is.

I noticed that a few of these charge points are now only offering 31A. Not sure if this is an across the board change, or just for Teslas after Tesla drivers kept reporting stalled charging sessions.
Thanks Doug for proving I'm not going mad!

Tbh I normally charge at home, and every time I've tried charging at a public site (admittedly only 3x) it has been a less than stellar experience for one reason or another :(
 

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In testing out public charging and seeing this sort of behavior, it is often good to start low on the Amps and increase it to see where it breaks. (assuming that you don't trip a breakers somewhere.)

In the US, Blink Network chargers were supposed to be 30A, but lowered to (at best 24A). So, users plugging in could get a pilot at 30A, but since it doesn't handle well, charging fault.

More experienced Roadster users recommended to start with low amperage and raise it. This sort of tactic still works with the Model S with its variable Amperage setting on the charge settings.
 

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I think several vehicles (Leafs included) have 6.6 kW chargers so would not draw more than about 28.7 Amps. If you try and pull 32 Amps then you may will trip a device designed to deliver at most 32 Amps.

It's surely not coincidence that 3.3 kW and 6.6 kW chargers are widely used by different car manufacturers with 16 and 32 Amp equipment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
For mass market adoption, why doesn't the car do this for you automatically though, really this should be the question.
 

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For mass market adoption, why doesn't the car do this for you automatically though, really this should be the question.
It does, but Tesla makes it so that you can adjust it. The problem is the Pilot signal may or may not really reflect the capabilities of the line. So, Tesla makes it so that the end user can adjust accordingly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
It does, but Tesla makes it so that you can adjust it. The problem is the Pilot signal may or may not really reflect the capabilities of the line. So, Tesla makes it so that the end user can adjust accordingly.
I get that...

If what we are actually saying is the pilot signal is wrong sufficiently frequently, then the car has to make allowances (in the same way modern ICE s have knock sensors to adjust maps because not all 95 octane fuel is what it says on the tin)

A simple trick would be the car gets a 32a pilot, tries to pull 32a, fails, then _automatically_ sets the draw to 30, then tries again. If that fails try 24, then 16, then... Finally giving you a meaningful message?
 

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I get that...

If what we are actually saying is the pilot signal is wrong sufficiently frequently, then the car has to make allowances (in the same way modern ICE s have knock sensors to adjust maps because not all 95 octane fuel is what it says on the tin)

A simple trick would be the car gets a 32a pilot, tries to pull 32a, fails, then _automatically_ sets the draw to 30, then tries again. If that fails try 24, then 16, then... Finally giving you a meaningful message?
I wonder if it has to do with J1772 standard and time-outs and the like built into that protocol.

I suppose it could try to start at a lower Amperage and gradually adjust upwards to the Pilot
 

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I wonder if a crowd-sourced map of public EVSEs would be better. If cars collected data on when their charging sessions stalled at particular EVSEs and at what current they were charging at the time, this data could be fed back to the fleet of cars on the road to inform the charging system of a recommended safe maximum current.

That's not the real solution though, and I'd worry that overly defensive behaviour on the part of the cars would just leave less incentive for the EVSE manufacturers to improve their firmware, which is, from my experience, of pretty shocking quality.
 

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I wonder if a crowd-sourced map of public EVSEs would be better. If cars collected data on when their charging sessions stalled at particular EVSEs and at what current they were charging at the time, this data could be fed back to the fleet of cars on the road to inform the charging system of a recommended safe maximum current.

That's not the real solution though, and I'd worry that overly defensive behaviour on the part of the cars would just leave less incentive for the EVSE manufacturers to improve their firmware, which is, from my experience, of pretty shocking quality.
The latest version of Plugshare actually tracks the maximum sustained Volts and Amps at a location (user entered and not automatic) for people to share on the charger stats when checking into a site. (this is always fun to track at Superchargers. I would guess that the UK ones will be the newer models, but is definitely helpful to track the retrofits that Tesla is doing in the US (upgrading 90kw ones to 135kw)
 

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In this utube vid, it shows Nyland was adjusting the current to prevent it from cutting out,(28mins into the video) I thought the Tesla would automatically adjust current settings, but going from above posts, it doesn't seem to do that, is there something I've missed?

Also I noticed he was using the industrial 3phase outlet, I have something similar in my workplace to charge forklift, can I actually use that on the Tesla?

 

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@skint it depends on the "something similar" if its a blue single phase 32amp or red 3 phase commando then yes with the appropriate UMC or 3rd party connector.

However worth checking before trying to plug in a model S that its not some special thing for the Forklifts

Remember if you block the forklift drivers chargepoint he can probably move you to another bay :)
 

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@skint it depends on the "something similar" if its a blue single phase 32amp or red 3 phase commando then yes with the appropriate UMC or 3rd party connector.

However worth checking before trying to plug in a model S that its not some special thing for the Forklifts

Remember if you block the forklift drivers chargepoint he can probably move you to another bay :)
Thanks for the quick reply, its red 3 phase look just like that in the video, its currently connected to a charger which in turn charge the forklift.

I don't think the forklift has enough power to move the 2 tons plus Tesla :D
 

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In this utube vid, it shows Nyland was adjusting the current to prevent it from cutting out,(28mins into the video) I thought the Tesla would automatically adjust current settings, but going from above posts, it doesn't seem to do that, is there something I've missed?
Nyland is using a DIY EVSE that supports 32A (~7kW) single phase but with a 4 pole contactor could support 32A (~22kW) three phase.

By default the DIY EVSE is set to 32A although you could select any charge current between 7A and 32A. Personally I find it much easier (and warmer) to set the charge current in the car rather than at the EVSE.

The DIY EVSE in the Nyland video used the ZCW (Mainpine) Protocol controller that we also used in this video;

 
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