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BP/OPConnect charging in Hawaii

Discussion in 'Hawaii' started by WeazL, Oct 3, 2013.

  1. WeazL

    WeazL Moderator - Hawaii

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    Would anyone happen to have a spare Better Place FOB that they would be willing to part with? I'd be more than happy to buy it. Someof the chargers that are in the areas i frequent most are BP chargers and i can't charge without the FOB.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Akikiki

    Akikiki A'-Lo-HA ! y'all

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    #2 Akikiki, Oct 3, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2013
    MMartin, I can't help with the fob, but I think the Better Place charges are not taking credits from people anyway. Better Place went out of business. And I think it was Charge Point (or maybe it was OpConnect) that bought them. I believe Charge Point made them in-operative because they didn't want to issue any more Better Place fobs, and Charge Point cards would not interface to Better Point POS. Charge Point was going to trade out the Better Place for their chargers. Anyone remember the details on this better than this?

    FYI. It was Opconnect.
     
  3. dsmith2189

    dsmith2189 Active Member

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    #3 dsmith2189, Oct 3, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2013
    Details of agreement

    OPConnect bought the BetterPlace chargers. they plan to replace them but have not provided a schedule.
    Best suggestion is to get an OPConnect card and keep their phone # handy to ask them to enable charger(?). if that is possible. Tech Support (855)885-9571

    Todd Ritter is their local rep. his office is at 1670 Makaloa St. Suite 204-117 (808) 352-3044 (he runs a couple of EV/solar business out of this office)
    Orion Solar Racking
    RetroFit Hawaii
     
  4. WeazL

    WeazL Moderator - Hawaii

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    I contacted OpConnect yesterday via the 855 number listed above (was also on a sticker on the charger). They said that they cannot remotely activate the chargers and indeed have no fobs at this time.

    However, the rep did say that their replacement schedule is set to start in a month and a half. I'm taking that with a grain of salt, but hey, at least the tech actually knew about the Hawaii problem and offered up some info for digestion.

    Thanks Akikiki and dsmith2189 for your replies.
     
  5. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

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  6. spleen

    spleen Active Member

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    That'll be nice if they can get the Better Place chargers upgraded but worried about the fees that may be coming ....
     
  7. dsmith2189

    dsmith2189 Active Member

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    #7 dsmith2189, Oct 4, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2013
    Isn't it funny that they mention range anxiety in the press release when talking about HI
    When I spoke with Todd they did plan on charging a fee, but only after they did the changeover from BetterPlace to OpConnect.
    At least the MK II chargers are better looking (but not by much) than the MK I version.
    MK I
    OpConnect_charger_280.jpg
    MK II
    markII.png
     
  8. gmtom1

    gmtom1 Member

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    Anyone know how SemaConnect / SemaCharge stations work? My building downtown is installing 2 in the garage, but has not announced any details yet. I've downloaded the app, but they want $20 to pre-load before they send you the RFID card. The app makes it seem like I can use the station without the card (perhaps through the NFC on my phone?), but it's not clear.
     
  9. dsmith2189

    dsmith2189 Active Member

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    #9 dsmith2189, Oct 5, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2013
    when I did a search on the SemaConnect web site for FREE charging stations it came up with 0 results so it looks like these will be pay charge stations. the card is not only to start the station but can be used like a debit card to pay for your hookup. they will probably give you an option to reload the card with your credit card when you have insufficient credit remaining on your card to start your session.
    At least with OpConnect they will give you a card with a $0 balance so you can use their stations (after they upgrade) while they are still free.
    Blink (Blink plus) membership requires your CC information to get the card, but does not charge you until you use the station. (Blink guest membership you do not get a card.) Blink has chargers at all Wal-Marts in Hawaii. $1/hr Plus and $2/hr guest
    semacharge.png
     
  10. spleen

    spleen Active Member

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    All these proprietary networks are annoying ... wish they would come up with an universal fob/card that worked with all the charging networks.
     
  11. drtko147

    drtko147 Member

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    How true. And I wish they made the cords longer. I hate having to reverse into the stalls just to plug in. It is hard to do with the busy traffice at Kahala Mall.
     
  12. WeazL

    WeazL Moderator - Hawaii

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    Had a few leaves blow into the stalls on occasion, did we? :wink:
     
  13. gmtom1

    gmtom1 Member

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    I don't understand why there aren't more Volta stations here. From what I've read in the news, they pay for everything, including install costs. I like using those (when they're not taken by Leafs) since it's plug and go, no silly cards or fobs to get in the way.
     
  14. dsmith2189

    dsmith2189 Active Member

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    They are installing more Volta chargers at Ward in the future. Their limitation is the Store/Mall parking lot owner has to have someone willing to advertise on the charger. It is the advertiser that actually pays the charging bill.
     
  15. WeazL

    WeazL Moderator - Hawaii

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    The same day that I called OpConnect, I also sent them an email. Yesterday, I received this response to my request for information about their Better Place chargers in Honolulu:

    Good afternoon. I am Nathan Isaacs, the marketing manager at OpConnect. We
    have begun the process for swapping out the Better Place stations with
    OpConnect stations. We will be posting more information about that swap as
    it gains some momentum. The project is expected to be completed this fall.
    Unfortunately, we have never been able to obtain additional key fobs for the
    Better Place stations.
     
  16. Akikiki

    Akikiki A'-Lo-HA ! y'all

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    Recargo and SemaConnect Introduce Open System for Public EV Charging

    Read more at: www.recargo.com/news

    Recargo and SemaConnect Introduce Open System for Public EV Charging "Pay with Plugshare"

    VENICE, CA and BETHESDA, MD– October 1, 2013– Recargo Inc., electric vehicle software and information services company has partnered with SemaConnect, a national leader in electric vehicle charging stations to launch a new public charger payment solution. “Pay With PlugShare” has been engineered to be the easiest and most universal public charging system currently available, and will operate seamlessly under PlugShare, the most widely used app to find a place to charge and now to pay for your charge. Pay With Plugshare will be available at more than 300 SemaConnect charging stations in the United States and Canada.
     
  17. spleen

    spleen Active Member

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    That's great news. Now to incorporate other charging networks ...
     
  18. gmtom1

    gmtom1 Member

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    I visited Hilton Hawaiian Village over the weekend. Good news is they have 6 EV stalls on the 2nd floor of the parking garage with nice wide spaces. I was able to pull headfirst into the stall and the cord still (barely) reached the charging port. Bad news - they still have the old BetterPlace chargers installed, which means you have to go all the way to the front desk manager on duty, show them your license, then they give you the fob to activate the station. Sheraton Waikiki is the same. Total pain in the butt just for a quickie charge while I'm visiting or going to dinner someplace.

    Too bad the charging stations can't be programmed to shut off automatically after the free charging period expires. That way, if you're not planning to stay longer than that, you don't have to go through the whole exercise of registering at the front desk, etc. Plus, I would guess that most people that are using the stalls are not going to be staying long term. Based on my limited experience visiting SW & HHV, I don't think the stalls get much use, since I'm always greeted with confused looks by the staff when I ask for the EV charging fob.
     
  19. dsmith2189

    dsmith2189 Active Member

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    Good info. I will be at HHV for an event next month. what is this about free charging period? how long is it? If I have my own BP fob is it still limited time free charging? do they still charge you for just parking?
     
  20. gmtom1

    gmtom1 Member

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    The charging is free (up to two hours according to the Hawaii Energy listing), but the normal hotel parking rates/rules apply. The fob I got from the front desk manager on duty was a better place fob, so logically you'd think another Better place fob would work, but I don't know enough to say for sure. The manager took my drivers' license and wrote my info down into a log, along with the fob number, so I don't know if that's somehow how they know how much charging you did. Perhaps the stations are pre-programmed to only charge for a fixed time period. She didn't ask for any form of payment or anything else, and when I returned the fob I just dropped it off and left.

    Good luck - hope your fob works so you can save yourself the long walk to the front desk and back. At least you'll have a space on a low floor. I've just parked in the stall a few times at Sheraton even when I'm not charging, just cause it's too much of a pain to deal with and the space is the best benefit.
     

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