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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here we go:

The ampera was plugged in last night, pre-heat worked this morning, the engine warning light was on when the car was switched on, but that turns on and off of it's own accord anyway . . .

Back this evening, plug the car in - the light goes amber, but there's no sound of the relay switching and the light stays amber. Light goes out, then back to amber. The charge point (zappi) says "waiting for EV", then "checking", then "EV disconnected", then back to waiting, on time with the light going on and off.

Maybe a problem with the charge point? I plugged the granny charger in, green lights there - plug into the car and get the same lack of charge (but with a lot of rapid clicks from the granny charger).

The dashboard reads either "plug in to charge" when the light's off, or "not able to charge" when it's on.


Any ideas? I suppose it could be dirty connectors.
 

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Electron Summit White NK13...106k 91.0 and rising
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So we need to try and establish whether the 'unable to charge' problem lies inside or outside the car. A code reader would be useful to see whether the engine check lights you've been getting are driven by something deeper. Just because they clear doesn't mean there isn't a problem lurking. On the other hand, the engine check light can be triggered by simple things like a sticking charge door.

What happens when you power the car on with the cable disconnected and the charge door closed? Any error messages in the driver display?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Everything else works as normal when I switch on as if to drive. I've even moved back and forwards a bit as suggested on the forum!

I've given the connectors a clean with some emery board and cotton buds - an impressive amount of green/black muck has come off but she's still not charging, so I'll give it another try tomorrow. :mad:
 

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Electron Summit White NK13...106k 91.0 and rising
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So it is looking like you are in the right area.

The green/black deposit you describe sounds as if damp may have played a part. The car is is very sensitive to earth leakage on the mains side - thankfully. Was that just the plug(s) you cleaned or did you get into the charge port connections? They are very narrow. Is the car outside or garaged? Could you get a hair dryer onto the charge port for a while to make sure it is really dry?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It's outside, so I don't think a hair dryer will help. Not in the rain tonight.
Maybe tomorrow or Saturday.

I had a go at the zappi charger plug tethered to the house, but spent most time on the charge port on the car - as both the zappi and the granny chrger didn't work I reckoned the problem was on the car.
 

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There have been cases of water/damp getting into the internals at the back of the car's socket, and shorting things out. I just met someone today whose Ampera is in a similar state, not charging so he's running on petrol only. He's about to do his own chargeport swap to try & fix the problem. Mine went when car was 3 years old, shorted & blew up my EVSE! Chargeport got fixed under warranty, and ever since I make a sort of tent out of a stiff poly bag, clipped over the cable, to try & keep as much rain & moisture out as possible. And then I always dry the socket area carefully with a hanky before shutting the door, if there's any damp around. Seems to have worked, no repeat problem like this in the 5 years following!
 

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The volt shelf guy does a port cover which can be inserted into the port to help guard against this.it fits around the charger so you can still charge up.
 

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There have been cases of water/damp getting into the internals at the back of the car's socket, and shorting things out. I just met someone today whose Ampera is in a similar state, not charging so he's running on petrol only. He's about to do his own chargeport swap to try & fix the problem.
I have also been having random charge problems - usually after doing pre-heat in my case - unable to charge and HV system in self-isolation so then running purely on ICE. But it has always reset immediately after I switch off again although the check light stays on for a few cycles. So I've just ordered this - slightly cheaper than via Vauxhall/Opel and almost certainly more likely to arrive while I still have the car. My tethered cable is also very twisted so I managed to get a virtually brand new one (with plug) from someone who was upgrading to Type 2. My thinking was to completely renew the 'wearing' parts of the charge system to either fix the problem or eliminate that potential source.
 

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Well it's obviously the week for it. Mine was probably 2/3rds full but I put it on delayed charge overnight to finish by 4, on the wall charger..

When I got up today the mains had tripped - two switches were down, 1 being the one the charger is on and the other being part of the house ring main. I reset them both and all seemed well.

After lunch I thought I'd see what had happened and started by unplugging the car. When I plugged it in again there was a quiet load pop from around the charge port and the charger circuit blew again. So I stuck the granny charger in and that has blown it's fuse.

the weather wasn't that bad overnight - it's been worse recently - but maybe that's a factor.

I had a full agenda of stuff to get done today which si already at risk so I won't get to it tomorrow, but I'll get the cheap OBD reader out and also clean up the plug as best I can - but I can feel a trip to Bellingers coming on! (Also curious why my oil only has 18% life remaining when I've barely moved the car, esp on ICE, since the 5 yr service in July.
 

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(Also curious why my oil only has 18% life remaining when I've barely moved the car, esp on ICE, since the 5 yr service in July.
Does seem to be fault of the week doesn't it? Good luck with the diagnosis. The charge port is about £110 and takes 20 minutes to fit but will be interesting to see what the dealer bill is for that.

I think the oil is changed every other service - so maybe it wasn't done - check your invoice. But the general consensus is that its not a smart algorithm and simply time-driven.
 

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The charge port is about £110 and takes 20 minutes to fit but will be interesting to see what the dealer bill is for that.
I'd hoped that'd be covered under the 7 yr warranty?!?

Quick glance indicates no oil change last year so it can't have been at 100% in July. I hadn't noticed :) Oil is on invoice for 2019.
 

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I'd hoped that'd be covered under the 7 yr warranty?!?

Quick glance indicates no oil change last year so it can't have been at 100% in July. I hadn't noticed :) Oil is on invoice for 2019.
Nothing to do with your problem (I think), but interesting on the 18% figure. I'm sure we've discussed this before. We met in 2019 at Bellingers for our 4th year service. My oil was definitely changed/reset to 100%, as was yours I believe. At the 5th year service it didn't get done, so it was 61% in June 2020. Mine is now 39% after having done about 8k miles since June, about half of which was ICE. Makes your 18% look a bit odd.
 

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I've tried cleaning everything but it is still popping both charge leads. Nothing looks especially damp.

On the granny lead it is tripping the RCD not blowing the fuse - I guess the RCD reacts faster. I did notice that the mains plug is not in great condition so I'll chop off the old one and put a new one on.

On the wall charger it just trips the circuit (and sometimes the whole house). If I plug in the cable when the charger is OK it is blowing more or less as soon as it makes contact, before it is fully home.

So a trip to Wantage for me next week I expect...

What would happen at a public charger, e.g. Tesco? I guess it would automatically reset after a while..?
 

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Before you cut the plug off, check this thread out :

 

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Squasher, you beat me to it! Smokie, do not, repeat not, go chopping the plug off! But if you have already done this, msg me & I'll repair the damage for you!

Bellingers have just replaced the entire charge port on my Ampy, managed to do one charge than another failed so they changed some controller thing as well. I've asked them to keep the broken bits for me. I reckon there's actually nothing wrong with the charge port and the damage was always in the controller, so I may well have a perfectly serviceable chargeport when I collect the car in a few days time. If so, you're welcome to try swapping my old one in, can't be any worse than what you have now! Msg me if interested.
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Well, muh cleaning later, there's no more gunk coming off . . .but still no joy for charging. Off we go for mending.
 

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Wooo thanks Squasher and Andy for the warning!!

I'll try to find out more about how to swap the port before accepting your offer (which could well be of interest if it's within my capability - remember I'm only in Wokingham and it' didn't take so long to get down to see you last time!!) - but please put my name on it, though if it's likely to be covered by the warranty I suppose I don't need to penny pinch!!

I heard a genuine tale about another "forum buddy" who got a £200 fine earlier today for being out on a non essential journey, when he was coming back from taking his doctor daughter to a 7am Sunday shift when she'd had a puncture. I may well not be going out till after lockdown!!
 

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As I'm off to Bellingers next week I thought I'd just plug in the car to make sure it still has the problem (tripping the Polar charger RCD and blowing the 13A fuse in the granny cable).

The wall charger now has a permanent red light. I'm, not sure what it should be but red never seems right to me.

The car comes up with Unable to Charge message.

I suppose I could take it to Tesco to try their charger but I am pretty sure the car has a problem as it was tripping both cables, and it seems possibly the charger too!!

Does anyone have any thoughts of anything for me to try or shall I just take it to the experts? Thanks
 
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