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I have recently travelled from York to Herefordshire and back. We experienced 2 chargers were non functional and the app failed to work on numerous occasions. We met other drivers who had similar experiences. Is the Ecotricity system resilient? I have lost confidence. I was taking my 92 year old mum back home after Easter and must have total confidence in the system. Was mine a one off or is there a major problem?

This experience on top of the lack of support on Sundays makes me concerned about the contract struck with Ecotricity.

Any constructive thoughts appreciated
 

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Ecotricity, from what i can gather accepted subsidies to set up a network, got a monopoly on MSA's to boot, and then do a very poor job at maintaining let alone expanding the system.
I'm unaware of anyone monitors what they do or indeed if there were any conditions applied to their monopoly.I would would be quite happy to pay more money for a system that had more capacity (eg more chargers per charging area) , more charging areas, and was more reliable. That would, for me, be a fair trade for a decent solid infrastructure that is only needed by most motorists on an occasional basis but when they do need it, need reliability above low prices that dont incent the provider to make it reliable
Nor do we need a monopoly provider that abuses its position through poor service. If there was an alternative supplier at MSA's then either ecotricity would smarten up its act or hand over to someone else that would.
 
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Ecotricity are now doing Sunday support. I'd email them detailing your poor experience never the less.

Sooner they get the idea that contactless cards are the only payment method that should be used the better.
 

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Have to say we were very impressed with the motorway charging network on a recent trip from Coventry to the Eden project and back. All the chargers were working, and not Ice'd etc. We also had a good experience a month or so ago heading to North Norfolk for a weekend away.

We have, however last year with local chargers (M6 Corley services) had an absolute nightmare! All the chargers were offline/broken, the helpline at the time was unavailable (Sunday).

So it is a mixed bag! Overall though, although there appears on this forum to be a lot of EH hatred, I've personally found them no better or worse than any of their competitors (Chargemaster, CPSGenie, et al) all have there positives and negatives, some appear quite pricey (CPSGenie springs to mind) EH do seem to have more units offline, or on free vend than anyone else, I've found it unusual to pull up at any of their competitors units and find them either offline or offering free charges!

I wouldn't however be put off doing longer journeys, just always have a plan B, and occasionally a plan C!
 

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I have found since the beginning of this year the reliability of EH charges has dropped significantly.

And as to CCS charging which I have to use, its a total nightmare at EH locations. The only thing that has saved my bacon is the REX in the i3 I'm leasing, without that I would be renting a car to travel anything over the range of the vehicle if I had to rely on EH CCS charging.

In fact it is has got so bad that when my current lease is up for my i3 at the end of this year I doubt I will chance any vehicle with CCS charging. For various reasons I doubt I will get another i3, mainly as the costs too lease have pretty much doubled.

So with the lack of new CCS chargers being installed at the motorway services and the increasing number of electric vehicles using them I will likely be forced to return to an ICE vehicle for long journeys. The crazy thing is in the whole of 2017 I never had a single issue charging of CCS, but every journey I have undertaken in 2018, 8 in total I have had a nightmare, even locations with 2 CCS charges and both were faulty. So you press on to the next services but as less of the CCS chargers are working you arrive at the rare working CCS charger and find it occupied.

As an example my last journey back from London on the M4, I stopped in at Reading services west bound to charge but find the single CCS rapid was not working, so I push on to Cheiveley to find the single charger occupied. So I press on to Membury, yes you guessed it the single CCS charger here is busted too. I had similar issues when travelling up the M5 and M6 recently to Bradford. How on earth are CCS equipped EV only vehicles supposed to navigate the motorways, EH are really letting down the EV market, to the point that as much as I love EV's currently I see no vehicle suitable at the end of this year that is both affordable to lease and suitable to travel on the motorways once or twice a month. I cannot justify spending or leasing for a Jag or Tesla for the amount of miles I do a year. The 40kwh Leaf seemed ideal as it used Chademo but now with what looks like a major issue with battery temps on long journeys and I don't fancy spending 90 to 120 mins charging on a return leg when the battery gets hot in the summer months.
 

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@Prop You might find the situation improving significantly as the Alternative Fuel Regulations require that all existing rapid chargers (that aren’t intended for a single manufacturers vehicles eg Tesla or Nissan) must be fitted with CCS by October . I drive an i3 but must admit that I haven’t had any major issues since abandoning EH and opting to use the Polar network of rapids (other than an Ultracharger yesterday that had a stuck touch screen), although I recognise this might not work in all areas of the country. There is now enough Polar/CYC coverage to do Bristol to London without ever using an EH pump, although you may need to drive 2-3 minutes from a motorway junction to do so. I also find many of the Polar Hotel locations to be much more pleasant than the services!

EDIT - MY STATEMENT ABOVE ABOUT MANDATORY CCS ON EXISTING UNITS IS INCORRECT - IT ONLY APPLIES TO NEW UNITS AND RENEWALS
 

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Actually I think I am wrong on that statement about CCS having to be retrofitted!! I’m confusing it with the requirement for providing ad-hoc pavement access that has to be available on all existing units by October this year. Other countries such as Spain and Germany have interpreted this differently though e..g I believe Spain is forcing Tesla to fit CCS sockets onto Superchargers!
 

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Any new or renewed rapids (whatever the definition of renewed is - I assume a replacement unit) must now however include a CCS connector. I can’t however see EH renewing any of their units in the near future.....
 

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Amounts of civil penalty

13.—(1) The maximum civil penalty for each breach of regulation 3(1) by an infrastructure operator is—

(a)£500 for each normal power recharging point not meeting those requirements;

(b)£4,000 for each high power recharging point not meeting those requirements;


Is this why ecotricity are doing nothing much at all? They know any actual work would then require CCS to be installed at any site they do more than replace one component.

“renewed” in respect of a recharging point, refuelling point or shore-side electricity supply installation means the restoration or upgrade of the item’s operating capacity, excluding—
(a)

work to replace or repair a single internal component or part as a result of wear and tear or the end of its operational life, or
(b)


work to carry out repairs to the external structure (including connector sockets) without replacing that structure;

This means EH could just ignore broken chargers as otherwise it means they probably have to fit CCS if they need more than one component swapping. I can also imagine operators turning down rapids to below 22kw so none of it applies rather than actually doing what is needed.
 

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This experience on top of the lack of support on Sundays makes me concerned about the contract struck with Ecotricity.

Any constructive thoughts appreciated
Sunday phone support started a few weeks ago. Not that they can do much over the phone.

Other companies are starting to get there act together. There are viable alternatives in England.


In Wales EH is pretty much all we have unless you drive a Tesla. I have had any problems recently. Just charged at Holyhead last week. Bangor is down but that is because the site is undergoing major construction.

Even Singing Kettle worked for me last month. That had been one of the less reliable pumps.

The app is still pretty bad.
 
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