Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register

Bought a Volt... Future Proof Charger for Model 3?

Glamisduner

Active Member
Aug 2, 2017
3,582
2,125
Escondido, CA
I bought a Chevy Volt Premium. I just Couldn't take paying $600 for gas a month anymore while my model 3 is delayed. My Commuter was bought back from ford as a lemon so I have been driving my Nissan Titan for my 80 mile commute. I found a 2013 volt premium for 8k and grabbed it to hold me over.

I still plan to buy a model 3, but now that I have a volt I want something better than the 120v charger is comes with. I do have a 240v dryer outlet.

Should I buy something that will just plug into this outlet for about $450 or is there something better I can buy (level 3?) that I can plug into a 240v outlet for now but will also work off a 50 amp outlet down the road?

Other options?

My expected order date is June-September, but after the last two delays I'm thinking I won't have the car until January to be more realistic. (I anticipate at least more more major delay).

Thanks.
 

gregd

Active Member
Dec 31, 2014
2,580
1,787
CM98
I still plan to buy a model 3, but now that I have a volt I want something better than the 120v charger is comes with. I do have a 240v dryer outlet.

Should I buy something that will just plug into this outlet for about $450 or is there something better I can buy (level 3?) that I can plug into a 240v outlet for now but will also work off a 50 amp outlet down the road?
So a dryer outlet is typically 30 amps, either via a 10-30 (older) or 14-30 (current) outlet, but check the breaker to be sure. You should be able to safely draw 24 amps from these for charging the car; that is all. This is a Level 2 charging situation; no way to get to Level 3 from that outlet, or generally anything else designed for home use. Also unnecessary to go higher, since you usually have all night to charge.

What sort of plugs did the car come with? I presume it's got a J1772 inlet, or an adapter for such, so you can get any of a number of EVSEs (commonly called "chargers") to connect to between the outlet and the car. Be sure it is configured for a 30 amp breaker / 24 amp charging rate. The Model 3 can use this, with its adapter, when such time arrives. If the EVSE can support the 50 amp outlet (14-50), it should be easy to swap plugs and re-program its breaker / current limit configuration down the road.

If you also have a dryer using the plug, consider getting a "dryer buddy" to switch between the dryer and car. The 10-30 & 14-30 outlets are generally not designed for repeated unplugging, and will quickly wear out (which can be dangerous).
 

Skidmark

Member
Oct 16, 2017
310
317
San Jose, CA
Juicebox 40 supports 40a charging but comes standard with the 14-50 plug. I believe you can get an adapter to work with your dryer plug but you need to make sure to set the unit to 80% of your breakers amperage.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Glamisduner

Glamisduner

Active Member
Aug 2, 2017
3,582
2,125
Escondido, CA
So a dryer outlet is typically 30 amps, either via a 10-30 (older) or 14-30 (current) outlet, but check the breaker to be sure. You should be able to safely draw 24 amps from these for charging the car; that is all. This is a Level 2 charging situation; no way to get to Level 3 from that outlet, or generally anything else designed for home use. Also unnecessary to go higher, since you usually have all night to charge.

What sort of plugs did the car come with? I presume it's got a J1772 inlet, or an adapter for such, so you can get any of a number of EVSEs (commonly called "chargers") to connect to between the outlet and the car. Be sure it is configured for a 30 amp breaker / 24 amp charging rate. The Model 3 can use this, with its adapter, when such time arrives. If the EVSE can support the 50 amp outlet (14-50), it should be easy to swap plugs and re-program its breaker / current limit configuration down the road.

If you also have a dryer using the plug, consider getting a "dryer buddy" to switch between the dryer and car. The 10-30 & 14-30 outlets are generally not designed for repeated unplugging, and will quickly wear out (which can be dangerous).

I actually have 2 outlets near the dryer, I will unplug it and get a a picture as they might be different. I can't find any 50 amp chargers that can be plugged into a dryer outlet (but maybe with some kind of adapter? this would be possible? I'd just hate to buy a 24 amp charger now for $500 then have to throw it away for another 50 amp charger when I get the model 3.

The car comes with a Level 1 charger than can only do 120v @ 12 amps. Seems my outlet outside the garage would allow this, although I think it's only a 15 amp outlet (not sure what the breaker is). Otherwise I would not be able to charge the car overnight at 120v 8 amps...

Juicebox 40 supports 40a charging but comes standard with the 14-50 plug. I believe you can get an adapter to work with your dryer plug but you need to make sure to set the unit to 80% of your breakers amperage.

That sounds pretty good. Is the Juicebox a good charger? I was also looking at these:
Residential EVSE: Charging Stations for residential use | ClipperCreek

My original plan was to get a testa charging station, but I guess things have changed, as that does not sound practical anymore.
 

Skidmark

Member
Oct 16, 2017
310
317
San Jose, CA
I actually have 2 outlets near the dryer, I will unplug it and get a a picture as they might be different. I can't find any 50 amp chargers that can be plugged into a dryer outlet (but maybe with some kind of adapter? this would be possible? I'd just hate to buy a 24 amp charger now for $500 then have to throw it away for another 50 amp charger when I get the model 3.

Your volt only charges at 3.3kW and the model 3 comes with a 32a charger so you're spending quite a bit on an EVSE by "futureproofing"
 

McRat

Well-Known Member
Jan 20, 2016
5,771
5,414
LA
2016-2018 Volt EVSEs will operate on 240v as sold, if you make an adapter to feed it 240v.
2011-2015 EVSEs can modified cheaply to run on 240v.
It charges the car at 12 amps.

Or you can buy aftermarket EVSEs. The car will charge at 16 amps. Clipper Creek is reliable and well built. In fact, they are the company that makes the OEM unit.

Older JuiceBoxes have a cable that's thick enough to tow barrages. Built like military equipment. Not sure about the latest ones. Get a 40 amp one with 14-50 plug so you can take it on road trips. This is the outlet found at RV parks.

Bosch? Some folk say they are junk, but we have one that's been in use 5 years daily, no problems.
 
Last edited:
  • Helpful
  • Like
Reactions: GSP and jsmay311

cgrubbe

Member
Oct 1, 2017
93
107
Columbus, OH
120v = Level 1
240v = Level 2
DC Fast Charging = Level 3

You likely won’t be DC fast charging at home.

You can change the type of 240v outlet, but if you’re unclear about the type of wiring, the circuit breaker, or the load your going to put on it you’ll want to work with a licensed electrician. A standard dryer outlet likely won’t have been wired to ever be able to support a 240v/50amp load.

A Level 2 EVSE that has a J1772 (Standard EV plug for non-Tesla) can be used for a Tesla as well with the adapter that comes with the car. In mean time it will charge your volt faster than the Level 1 that came with it.

I use a Level 2 GE unit, that I installed for my BMW i3 originally, with the Tesla adapter every day. Only drawback is it’s got a 30Amp limit. Wasn’t wired for 50Amps but otherwise works just fine and I’ve never had trouble getting enough charge over night.
 

ItsNotAboutTheMoney

Well-Known Member
Jul 12, 2012
10,772
7,988
Maine
Clipper Creek units have a 3 year warranty, and are simple and reliable (we've had our hard-wired LCS-25 for 4 years and have had _1_ charging failure.) So, even if temporary use, you could sell the unit and get decent value, or keep it as a back-up or guest EVSE.

Things are easier for EVSE purchase if you have a NEMA 14-30 dryer socket since there are units manufactured for it.

Clipper Creek's cheapest NEMA-30 option is the $395 LCS-20P.

16A Level 2 EVSE LCS-20P with NEMA 14-30 | ClipperCreek

LCS-20P is a 16A charger, that's good enough for your Volt, which maxes out at 3.3kW.
(Clipper Creek names their EVSEs for the minimum circuit rating they need)

LCS-30P is more expensive ($515) and no additional value for the Volt, but it will max out your circuit as a future/guest back-up:
24A Level 2 EVSE LCS-30P with NEMA 14-30 | ClipperCreek

PS Enjoy your Volt.
 

Racer-TM3

Member
Mar 30, 2018
6
0
San Jose, CA
A 2013 Volt for $8k?! Nice buy. I sold mine for $11k last month.

Fwiw, I charged mine overnight using a standard 110 outlet. The 8-12 hours of overnight charge at 12A was sufficient to fully charge the battery each night.
 

buddhra

Member
Dec 29, 2017
235
307
San Luis Obispo
As a former Volt owner and now Model 3 owner, I wouldn't bother with trying to find an EVSE for both. Any J1772 EVSE that works with the Volt will need to use the J1772 to Tesla adapter for the Model 3. One of the best parts of the Tesla wall connector or mobile connector that already comes with the Model 3 is the button that opens the charge port cover.

Just use the Volt's 110V adapter or get a cheap level 2 EVSE like the Clipper Creek LCS-20.
 

Skidmark

Member
Oct 16, 2017
310
317
San Jose, CA
I actually have 2 outlets near the dryer, I will unplug it and get a a picture as they might be different. I can't find any 50 amp chargers that can be plugged into a dryer outlet (but maybe with some kind of adapter? this would be possible? I'd just hate to buy a 24 amp charger now for $500 then have to throw it away for another 50 amp charger when I get the model 3.

The car comes with a Level 1 charger than can only do 120v @ 12 amps. Seems my outlet outside the garage would allow this, although I think it's only a 15 amp outlet (not sure what the breaker is). Otherwise I would not be able to charge the car overnight at 120v 8 amps...



That sounds pretty good. Is the Juicebox a good charger? I was also looking at these:
Residential EVSE: Charging Stations for residential use | ClipperCreek

My original plan was to get a testa charging station, but I guess things have changed, as that does not sound practical anymore.

I've had a Juicebox 40 Pro for about a year, but don't use it at all now. I do like the Juicebox, but I don't think you need it for your situation. As mentioned, the Model 3 already comes with a 32A Level 2 EVSE with a 14-50 plug and normal household 110v plug, but you can also buy other adapters that fit on it. If you can charge for 10+ hours on 110V, that should be enough for your Volt so you shouldn't need to get a costly Level 2 EVSE.
 
  • Helpful
Reactions: GSP

Glamisduner

Active Member
Aug 2, 2017
3,582
2,125
Escondido, CA
Juicebox 40 supports 40a charging but comes standard with the 14-50 plug. I believe you can get an adapter to work with your dryer plug but you need to make sure to set the unit to 80% of your breakers amperage.
2016-2018 Volt EVSEs will operate on 240v as sold, if you make an adapter to feed it 240v.
2011-2015 EVSEs can modified cheaply to run on 240v.
It charges the car at 12 amps.

Or you can buy aftermarket EVSEs. The car will charge at 16 amps. Clipper Creek is reliable and well built. In fact, they are the company that makes the OEM unit.

Older JuiceBoxes have a cable that's thick enough to tow barrages. Built like military equipment. Not sure about the latest ones. Get a 40 amp one with 14-50 plug so you can take it on road trips. This is the outlet found at RV parks.

Bosch? Some folk say they are junk, but we have one that's been in use 5 years daily, no problems.
it's a 2013 volt, so it only came with the 120v. How do I modify it as that sounds like the best option.
A 2013 Volt for $8k?! Nice buy. I sold mine for $11k last month.

Fwiw, I charged mine overnight using a standard 110 outlet. The 8-12 hours of overnight charge at 12A was sufficient to fully charge the battery each night.
2013 Volt Premium :) But it has ALLOT of miles on it (140k). Still it got me all the way to work today (41miles) on electric. Yea 8-12 hours is cool, but I'm not always home for that long. I know, I'm supposed to get 8 hours sleep, but that's not always possible for me.

I'm going to look into modifying my EVSE, I found the video
I'm handy with a soldering iron so it really does look pretty easy to do.

This forum is great! I posted on a volt forum but haven't gotten any responses. Thanks guys!
 
  • Like
Reactions: GSP

jsmay311

Active Member
Apr 22, 2016
1,178
1,693
Chicago suburbs
Sounds like you're intent on having L2 charging, but if it were me and I knew I was only going to be driving the Volt for 1-2 years while I wait for a Model 3, I'd just stick with L1.

You can get a full charge in ~10 hrs with a Gen 1 Volt on L1 (you just gotta remember to set it to 12A every day via the touchscreen, which is admittedly annoying). Gas savings from going with L2 charging will likely be minimal and likely wouldn't offset the cost to upgrade.

If you do modify the stock EVSE to accept 240V, I'd make sure it'll still work with 120V with the original plug. Otherwise it might complicate things when you go to sell it.
 

SigNC

Active Member
Aug 23, 2017
1,553
1,424
NC
doesn't the volt only only have a 16kWh battery? Just plug it into 120 when you get home if you have 10-12 hours between getting home and leaving again.
 

RedModel3

Member
Feb 19, 2016
416
410
United States
I was in your position when I bought my '12 Volt a year and a half ago. I had the local company who specialized in Tesla charging come out to see if I could wire for the Tesla at the same time. To make a long story short, it wasn't really going to work without a lot of money, and I still might need to make changes when I got the Tesla. So, I've lived with the L1 charging and I've been a very happy camper. As it turns out, I'm moving in a month, and I'll have the electricians put in the Tesla charging stuff at my new house, because I will be ordering as soon as the house sale closes.

Your real problem is finding a place to charge for your return commute. If you can solve that, you would have your entire commute covered.

Save your money, buy a little extra gas for now, and spend the savings on your Tesla. You may actually get your invitation sooner than expected. That's what happened to me. Good luck, and enjoy your Volt!
 

Fusion

Member
Apr 13, 2016
682
487
San Francisco
I wouldn't waste my money on a L2 charger. The battery on that Volt is not that big and the L1 should be fine with overnight charging. Also you got gas as backup.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Cory151

DarthPierce

Member
Jun 29, 2016
248
428
Boulder, CO
I'm thinking that the best future proofing with Tesla as the 'future' would be getting a tesla wall connector and a Tesla to J1772 adapter. Or at least that's what I'm considering doing to speed up my Leaf's charging while allowing us to have both our leaf and a M3 sometime later this year. If I weren't planning to keep both, I wouldn't invest in the L2 until I got the M3.

Anyone have experience with the Tesla to J1772 adapter or see any problems with this plan?
 

SageBrush

REJECT Fascism
May 7, 2015
12,504
15,510
New Mexico
If you do not want to take the risk of damaging your OEM mobile EVSE or making a risky repair then let these nice and very competent folks do it for you. $149

My advice: if you are going to keep two EVs then upgrade the EVSE to use with the dryer outlet and install a 14-50 outlet when the Tesla arrives.

If you are going to only have one EV the choice is harder and it depends how much you care about getting the maximum charge rate possible out of the car. The Tesla is IIRC 7.7 kW for the SR and 9.6 kW for the LR models.

Amps * Volts = Watts
 

Products we're discussing on TMC...

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top