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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have had my GTE since September with charging and heated cabin ready for departure time working perfectly, I had the car set to keep the battery at 100% all of the time and start charging as soon as I plugged the charger in and it all worked beautifully.

Like many EV owners I have finally switched to Octopus GO which provides cheaper electricity between 12:30 - 4:30 so I want my car to charge at these times whilst I am at home ready for my departure at 7:20.

I also charge at work for my return journey but I just want it to charge straight away here as there is no peek/off-peek charging.

My departure times are:

Mon - Friday - 7:20am (need the charging for this to be done between 12:30am and 4:30am)
Monday - Thursday 5:00pm (ideally want the car to charge as soon as I plug in the charger in case I pop out in the day)
Friday 4:00pm (I finish an hour early on a Friday, I actually tell the car to pre-heat at 4:00pm each weekday just to try and get some extra warm and make sure the car is 100% clear)

This should be reflected by the settings below:

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These are my Basic settings:

I have the lower charge limit set to 0% if I set it any higher the car starts to charge but doesn't seem to stop at the percentage and continues to charge ignoring the off peek and duration times. My understanding is it should charge to the minimum require amount so ideally for me 30% i.e. about 10 miles but when testing the car was still charging with 22 miles range in the tank despite having it set at 30%, so for now I have set it at 0% as I am more concerned with getting the off peak charging working correctly first, once I know I have that working I can worry about minimum charge levels.

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This is just my morning 7:20 departure schedule showing the charge location as "Home"

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This just shows my charge locations and what I am wanting the charging to do at those locations (just preheat the car at work and not control the charging times, preheat the car and control the charging through off peak charging at home)

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This image shows my settings at work: (this works perfectly other than I now need to press the charging override button when putting the cable in to start the charging otherwise it just sits and flashes a green LED at me all day indicating charging is scheduled, I am happy to press the button and this work perfectly well:

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This screen is where my troubles start, these are my settings when at home, the problem is the car just seems to completely ignore the off-peak charging settings and just starts charging the car about 4am ready for departure at 7:20, don't get me wrong the car is fully charged and warm ready for 7:20 but I can't get it to take advantage of using the cheaper electric between 12:30 and 4:30.

I have played around quite a bit with the settings telling the car the off-peak charging is much earlier in the night as well (just because I am awake and its easier to monitor, I prefer to be asleep between 12:30 - 4:30 like most people!) but no matter what I do I can get the car to do its charging in off-peak times.

I have tried having the charging ticked and unticked (unticked the car just starts charging straight away and ignores the off-speak, ticked the car doesn't charge until the latest time possible ready for the departure

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How have people got this working?

The ideal scenario for me is arrive home about 6:00pm and the car starts to charge to 20-30% (minimum charge level, - this gives me enough to nip to the shops of an evening), the charging then stops until 12:30 where the charging resumes up to 100% of at least very close to that so the bulk of the charging is done in off-peak hours, the charging / pre-eating then starts up about 6:50 -7:00 ready for me jumping in a warm car with full range at minimal cost for 7:20

Actually achieving the above is proving very difficult even when taking out the minimum battery level as mentioned above, what on earth am I doing wrong?

Thanks in advance
 

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Maybe try a new location off peak 00:30-04:30, charging only, 04:30 departure time. Then use home, air con only, 07:20 departure time.

Why does the work location not have charging ticked? It's rightly not starting to charge as it'll be waiting to do the air con (only) for 4 & 5 pm.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Maybe try a new location off peak 00:30-04:30, charging only, 04:30 departure time. Then use home, air con only, 07:20 departure time.

Why does the work location not have charging ticked? It's rightly not starting to charge as it'll be waiting to do the air con (only) for 4 & 5 pm.
I have run out of departure times unfortunately, unless I'm missing something the GTE only allows 3 departure times? Very annoying! There's many more i would have ideally.

The work doesn't have charging ticked is just a historic setting really as ticking it used to cause the delay in charging but it was easier to have no charging ticked (alongside having battery at 100% minimum) and it would just charge the second I plugged it in, no matter where I was. You are right though, I should tick charging at work now too, but I don't think it'll have any effect on the actual off peak charging issue will it?
 

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The Golf GTE only allows 3 slots, but oddly the Passat GTE gives you 10. They have the same drivetrain!

Your config matched mine so not sure what the issue is, the car should start charging at 00:30 (and it worked for me when I had this set up starting at 1am when on Economy7), at a guess you should try setting the end time to 8am so it covers your preheat too?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The Golf GTE only allows 3 slots, but oddly the Passat GTE gives you 10. They have the same drivetrain!

Your config matched mine so not sure what the issue is, the car should start charging at 00:30 (and it worked for me when I had this set up starting at 1am when on Economy7), at a guess you should try setting the end time to 8am so it covers your preheat too?
That's annoying as 10 depature times would be ideal to setup things exactly how I would want them!

Do you mean I should try and set Off Peak from 12:30 - 8:00?

I had a play this evening on my way home from work and I set minimum battery charge to 20% as I had gone a long way home and only had 1 mile left in the tank, so as expected the car started to charge as soon as I got home, but it didnt stop at 20% it continued to charge for about 3 and a half hours right up to 100% 31 miles in the tank!

Really struggling to get the settings working correctly, if I could get the minimum charge working correctly I could come up with a scheduled charging solution through Smartthings rather than relying on the car!
 

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Did you make sure when plugged in that the clock and plug icon was lit up, near the charge port?
Does it let you select this option? If it only has the plug icon visible then the schedules are not set correctly for some reason.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Did you make sure when plugged in that the clock and plug icon was lit up, near the charge port?
Does it let you select this option? If it only has the plug icon visible then the schedules are not set correctly for some reason.
Yes the delayed charging symbol illuminates correctly.

I can also confirm if I am below the minimum charge when I plug in but press the delay button it works, but it still ignores off peak and just starts to charge right at the end of off peak ready for my 7:20 departure!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ok so this gets even more bizarre now, I haven’t changed any settings on the car but suddenly last night it worked correctly!

Car was plugged in last night with 3 miles range, car went into delayed charging mode when plugged in as it is supposed too, looking at my power usage in the charging logs for that device, it then started to charge at: 12:30:15am and completed charge at 3:37:59am the energy usage is then less than 1w until 6:50:04am when the car starts to pre-heat / possibly finish the last bit of charging ready for my planned departure time of 7:20am. The car pulled a steady 2.2kwh until I unplugged at 7:24:28am (4 minutes after scheduled departure, I have it set like this because I usually leave the house between 7:20 and 7:30 but the extra bit of heating just helps get the car up to temp a bit better on the granny charger)

So as long as it continues to do this it appear the scheduled charging is working again, no sure if it just took a bit of time to work out what it was doing and implement it but I am happy its working as it is supposed too now! Can’t say I know how to fix the issue if anyone else faces it but it certainly seems to have resolved itself!
 

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Thanks for this thread Robb. I’ve just switched to Octopus Go so trying to do the same but struggling a bit.

Can I just check if I’ve got this right...
  • Set min charge to 0% or maybe 20% if I need to nip out in the evening (rare these days!)
  • click the off peak power box
  • set the departure times (with or without pre-heating)

Then if I plug it in, should delay charging until 00.30?

What should the green/yellow charging lights be doing if it’s working?

thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for this thread Robb. I’ve just switched to Octopus Go so trying to do the same but struggling a bit.

Can I just check if I’ve got this right...
  • Set min charge to 0% or maybe 20% if I need to nip out in the evening (rare these days!)
  • click the off peak power box
  • set the departure times (with or without pre-heating)

Then if I plug it in, should delay charging until 00.30?

What should the green/yellow charging lights be doing if it’s working?

thanks!
Sounds like you have it set correct, the light should flash green to indicate delayed charging is set.

I'm having a bit of a nightmare with this 1 evening it works and the next it doesn't scheduled charging works most of the time but the minimum charge top up only seems to stop at work and just keeps charging at home, I'm really struggling to get it working 100% right all of the time.

I personally think a better solution is a decent quality high rated smart plug which you can schedule charging time and manually turn on and off via your phone if required. I have Smartthings at home and a Samsung plug has no issues scheduling charge times to start at 00:30, I then set it to end at 9:00am as the car has fully charged between 3:00 and 4:00 but I don't want the power to cut at this time as I want my pre heating to work ready for leaving at 7:20.

If you haven't invested in something like Smartthings I use one of these at work https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0878WDY93/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o09_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 it just connects to your wifi and a very very simple mobile app allows you to schedule charging times and see what energy is being used currently, its not quite as good on the history log for looking back and what energy was used and when but it does provide you with a nice daily breakdown see below screenshot

Monthly Breakdown:
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Current charging (obviously my car is connected currently)

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So to sum up if everything worked perfectly I think the VW setup is better if it worked........ unfortunately for some of us it doesn't seem to work very well at all so this solution works better for me, I just set the car to accept charge straight away and if I want to manually charge when the smartplug is off I just touch either the smart plug or the app and it'll start charging. I am continuing to try and get the VW software to work correctly just because I am one of those type of people but I'm not sure it will ever work 100%
 

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Only problem with those 'smart plugs' is the car draws 10A continuously for 3.5 hours -- it can easily overheat the relay, wiring, etc. Be careful if that is used indoors, as it could start an electrical fire. EVs do really want dedicated charging infrastructure where possible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Only problem with those 'smart plugs' is the car draws 10A continuously for 3.5 hours -- it can easily overheat the relay, wiring, etc. Be careful if that is used indoors, as it could start an electrical fire. EVs do really want dedicated charging infrastructure where possible.
Should a plug rated to 13amp struggle with less than 10amp load? They don't get even slightly warm after 3.5 hours?

The granny charger only pulls about 2200watts at 10amp these are rated to 3100 watts at 13amp so only running at 70% of max load?

Not trying to do anything dangerous, is the worry just the length of time drawing a relativity high current? As mentioned from what I've seen neither of my plugs have got even relatively warm when charging
 

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Well, be aware that the contacts will wear more if it cycles under load. So for instance if your relay switches off while the car is preheating, then it could arc and pit the contacts, which will have two outcomes -- either it will weld 'shut' and your relay will be broken (but stuck on), or it will begin to go high resistance, which could cause overheating.

This need only happen a few times to cause contact damage.

It might be fine, but those smart devices are generally used to switch relatively low loads, like lights, not electric vehicles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Well, be aware that the contacts will wear more if it cycles under load. So for instance if your relay switches off while the car is preheating, then it could arc and pit the contacts, which will have two outcomes -- either it will weld 'shut' and your relay will be broken (but stuck on), or it will begin to go high resistance, which could cause overheating.

This need only happen a few times to cause contact damage.

It might be fine, but those smart devices are generally used to switch relatively low loads, like lights, not electric vehicles.
As I don't actually need the "smart" aspect but more just a timer 13amp timer plug be more suitable / safe?

It is handy having the ability to turn the car on to charge from my phone but so far is not a function I've used I have been using the smart aspect for the time and power monitoring
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Well, be aware that the contacts will wear more if it cycles under load. So for instance if your relay switches off while the car is preheating, then it could arc and pit the contacts, which will have two outcomes -- either it will weld 'shut' and your relay will be broken (but stuck on), or it will begin to go high resistance, which could cause overheating.
Just on that I assume that as long as the connector is removed from the car to stop the draw as opposed to using the relay in the smart switch this won't cause issues with the plug?

Basically I can't think of a scenario where I would ever turn off the charging via the smart plug but I can see a scenario where I turn it on.

I assume doing this would avoid what you mention above? Basically to stop charging the car would be unlocked and cable removed. The relay would only even be used to turn off the power supply where there is no load on the charger.
 

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Most devices will not be rated to switch such loads. Look for devices that are designed to switch electric heaters, like central heating system timers.

If you only ever switch under no load it should be ok, although there is still the risk if conductors are undersized. I would still not do it. I am an EE by profession, and I've seen that it is easy to start an electrical fire with a damaged relay.

It strikes me that there could be a marketable product that 'smarts' a dumb charger by interfering with the car's pilot signal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Just looking into this a bit further is seems Smart Plugs like the TP-Link Kasa are rated to: · Input voltage: 100 - 240VAC · Output voltage: 100 - 240VAC · Maximum Load: 13A · Maximum Power: 2.99KW
Datasheet can be found here: https://m.media-amazon.com/images/I/81o1whT9s5S.pdf

I'm waiting for Samsung to come back to me with a datasheet for the ones I use

The Gosund one I use at work though states Maximum Total power: 2900w

Am I missing something but are these not rated within what the granny charger is using?
 

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Just looking into this a bit further is seems Smart Plugs like the TP-Link Kasa are rated to: · Input voltage: 100 - 240VAC · Output voltage: 100 - 240VAC · Maximum Load: 13A · Maximum Power: 2.99KW
Datasheet can be found here: https://m.media-amazon.com/images/I/81o1whT9s5S.pdf

I'm waiting for Samsung to come back to me with a datasheet for the ones I use

The Gosund one I use at work though states Maximum Total power: 2900w

Am I missing something but are these not rated within what the granny charger is using?
I've used the TP-link kasa plugs. They seem fine at 10Amp, heat-wise at least.

I used an old ~3kW/13Amp heater on one for hours, I wouldn't recommend touching the plug afterwards..
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I've used the TP-link kasa plugs. They seem fine at 10Amp, heat-wise at least.

I used an old ~3kW/13Amp heater on one for hours, I wouldn't recommend touching the plug afterwards..
That’s good to hear so far I haven’t seen any heat building up in either the Smartthings or Gosund plugs but I also don’t want to do anything dangerous so need to ensure it is safe to do so!
 
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