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Options for 6 electric car charging spots...

Discussion in 'North America' started by fiksegts, Sep 11, 2015.

  1. fiksegts

    fiksegts Active Member

    Jan 6, 2013
    Looking for options for installing 6 electric car charging stations in a building parking lot as part of a larger project I'm working on...

    what are the best most prominent options? chargpoint, etc?
  2. nwdiver

    nwdiver Well-Known Member

    Feb 17, 2013
    United States
    What level of monitoring are you looking for? Fee based or Free? I know charge point has some rather steep monthly fees....

    Clipper Creek seems popular for public charging but doesn't offer monitoring as far as I'm aware...

    There's also Emotorwerks; I know they were working hard to get UL certification... not sure how far they got...
  3. RandyS

    RandyS Fan of Elon

    Jul 8, 2012
    San Diego
    There are a few decisions to be made, as nwdiver alludes to...

    * Will it be free or fee-based?
    * Do you want to purchase it and install it yourself or do you want to contract the job out to a provider?
    * What type and power level of charging do you want to provide?

    Under the right conditions, Tesla might work with you to supply the stations if you install them and make them free...
    If you said you wanted to install 6 Level 2 units that will be free to use, I would recommend that you purchase the units and have your electrician install them. The question becomes "Which units"?
    If you said that you wanted to bill drivers, then it becomes more complicated, and you might want to use one of the providers to do the job. But you might end up paying more for their services than the energy is worth that you're dispensing...
    Also, there are ADA requirements to think about as well. Here, one charger for every 25 has to be ADA accessible...
  4. cpa

    cpa Active Member

    May 17, 2014
    Central Valley
    Others are more knowledgeable than I regarding Leafs, Volts, Prii, etc. All Teslas can charge at 40A. I haven't bothered to read about the X, but there is a rumor circulating (maybe confirmed by now?) that the X will be able to charge at 60A. Some of us S owners have dual chargers and can charge at 80A. I don't know what the maximum amperage that other makes can utilize, or if they can dial down an 80A charger to 30A.

    It is the general rule that EVSE in public locations only utilize 30A charging plugs, since all makes and models can use them. But you may wish to have one unit that has 40+ amps with the others at 30, or some other combination.

    There are several third-party companies out there (ChargPoint has been mentioned.) There is also EVgo, Sema, and a few others. They all install their proprietary charging stations.

    You might look into Volta here: Volta Charging | Home

    Volta is only in California and Arizona now, but has plans to expand. Not sure if Florida is on their horizon or not. But these stations are free, paid for by advertisers.

    Good luck!
  5. gnxs

    gnxs Member

    May 14, 2015
    South Florida
    Volta is in IL too.
  6. fiksegts

    fiksegts Active Member

    Jan 6, 2013
    thanks, I doubt we would want to charge $ for it... they are already paying for parking to get in the lot, should support all cars....
  7. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

    Feb 27, 2009
    If you are not going to charge and want generic J1772's, Clipper Creek has some very nice choices. The ClipperCreek Dual HCS-60 with Pedestal is very cost effective with 2 J1772's on a pedestal, each putting out 48 Amps. They also have 40, 32, and 24 Amp versions at lower prices.

    One thing to be careful of is to check on how the parking lot is billed for electricity. If you are on a commercial rate plan with "Demand Charges," then the increase in cost for peak kW demanded could be quite a shock. See Demand Charges — The Hidden Cost (and dirty secret) of EV Charging for Businesses for some discussion. If "Demand Charges" are an issue, that probably pushes you to the lower powered (fewer Amps) J1772's.

    Good luck on your noble mission.
  8. Saghost

    Saghost Well-Known Member

    Oct 9, 2013
    Any J1772 car can use any charger that has J1772 compliant signaling - there's no requirement to draw 80A from an "80A" EVSE - it just has the internals, wiring, and circuit breaker to accept that load, and a pilot signal that advertises the EVSE is capable of that to a car that understands the message. The charger module in the car is always in charge of deciding how much power to draw (but is required to respect the capacity limit the pilot signal from the EVSE communicates.)

    In theory, any modern EV can charge just fine from a Tesla HPWC - even those like the Volt and early Leaf that are limited to 15A/3.3kW. Tesla uses the same J1772 signaling, just a different physical configuration of the plug, so the only thing needed to make the Volt/HPWC combo happen is a simple mechanical adapter - the mirror of the one Tesla ships with every Model S in the US.

    So there's no reason to limit public "chargers" to 30A - I think it's just that this was the highest convenient type available early on, and Tesla is still the only mass produced car that goes much beyond that (Actually, I think the Mercedes B can do 40A/10kW, too - but that's using Tesla components anyway...)
  9. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Well-Known Member

    Jul 12, 2012
    Yes, that would be a good point. Get them to figure out the what the demand charges could be. Depending on how it's billed, how much power they're currently using, and staffing, it might be that they could offer charging included outside certain hours, but charge a supplement for peak-time charging.

    - - - Updated - - -

    What's the nature of the parking? Time can be relevant to demand charges.
  10. N4HHE

    N4HHE Member

    Oct 15, 2013
    Madison, AL
    J1772 only informs the EV as to how much current one is allowed to draw (the jumpers inside a HPWC perform this function). It is up to the vehicle to honor those restrictions. So it is a non-issue for lesser EVs such as the LEAF to connect to a J1772 capable of (say) 80A.
  11. richkae

    richkae VIN587

    Jan 15, 2008
    Is it reasonable to ask people to move their cars when charging is done to clear the space for another vehicle?
    If not, it may not be a waste putting in anything more than 6kW.
    You may even want to put the 6 EVSEs spread across 12 spaces ( so each EVSE can reach 2 spaces ), and encourage a notification system so that the connector can be transferred to the next vehicle.

    If they are going to be free, it may be worthwhile to avoid the networks and just put dumb EVSEs with no affiliation.

    If you want the option to have a usage fee, regular old parking meters may work, and not fancy EVSEs with payment processing or a network.
    That way you can add/remove the parking meters independently of the EVSEs.
  12. paulkva

    paulkva Member

    Jul 22, 2013
    Falls Church, VA
    +1, and this is also relevant for planning charging speed. What times of day / days of week do you expect to be peak for parking/charging, and how much time do you expect people to spend there?

    One one extreme, if you're building, say, airport parking, you'd likely be better off installing a larger number of plain 120V plugs. On the other extreme, if it's ultra-short-term like a convenience store or carry-out restaurant, it might not even make sense to add chargers unless they happen to be near other longer-term destinations.

    If it's all-day (e.g. office) or overnight (e.g. hotel/condo/apartment) parking, you still might want to consider supplementing the 6 plugs you're planning with extra 120V outlets. But if it's retail or other relatively short-term parking, you'll want to use J1772 and maximize the amps per plug, to the extent your construction budget allows and based on what you determine re: demand charges.

    Finally, it also wouldn't hurt to reach out to Tesla's Destination Charging group, if your location could be considered a destination. They might provide you with one or more free or discounted HPWCs and/or J1772 EVSEs.

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