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Update on Alternative Level II Chargers With Programmable Start/Stop Times

4656 Views 11 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  doug
I have been looking into chargers that can provide the programmable on/off capability that the Fisker-Lear charger lacks. Here are two that I have found.

The [email protected] Charger. Click on the picture for their FAQ:

At $700, this unit is cheaper than the Fisker unit, but the programmable on/off capability requires the addition of an Internet module at an additional cost of $400 bringing the total cost to $1100. It's nowhere as attractive as the Fisker unit, but it has the advantage of being portable, in the sense that you can apparently unplug it from a 220V plug and take it with you, which will provide Level II charging capability anywhere you can find a 220V plug. For example, if you are visiting friends or relatives who have a 220V (e.g., electric dryer) plug at their home, you can take this charger with you and use it while travelling.

The Blink Charger from Ecotality. Click on the photo below for their brochure:

Apparently, if you own a Nissan Leaf and live in certain parts of the country, you could get one of these for free or at least for a substantial discount. However, they are more than happy to sell you one if you don't qualify for the free one. The price for their unit is $1495, which includes the Internet connectivity and the start/stop programming. It is also a nice looking unit and the two piece construction allows you to put the charging cable away from the control unit if you need to.

Neither of these units include installation and that is really dependent on your garage configuration and permitting requirement in your area. My home is very new and I have a 220V sub panel in the garage where I would install the charger and I expect to pay no more than $1000 for installation, if not significantly less.

There is apparently a Federal tax credit that would pay 30% of the cost of the charger and installation, up to $1000, and some states and localities also have additional incentives for installing charging points at homes, so you can expect to get some sort of break on these prices.

Of the three options, the Blink charger seems pretty attractive to me and assuming I can save some money on the installation, will cost no more than the Fisker-Lear unit through EVConnect. But I will keep my options open as we get closer to the D-Day.

-- Fab.
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doug said:
Can't you just set the charge time on the car?
I asked that specific question to the test drive crew during my test drive, and the answer was that it was not possible to do that. They did not say that the car can do it, just that it was not possible. I assume that could be programmed into the car fairly easily, but the fact remains that it is not there yet.

I am also not convinced that the EVConnect "one price for all" model is efficient for people like me who have a very easy installation, so I like to keep my options open. Finally, the portability of the [email protected] unit is actually pretty appealing.

-- Fab.
svp6 said:
Sorry mate, I imagine it is going to be hard to know your beautiful car is sitting idle...
Don't think of it as sitting idle, think of it as getting a super deep initial charge. :D

-- Fab.
Let's hope your dealer does not use this valet company -- Also, nice Ferris Beuller reference towards the end:


-- Fab.
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