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To L2 charge or not to L2 charge?

There is no one size fits all answer. For some, L2 chargers make sense. For others, L1 charging is more than sufficient. For yet others, the flexibility is more important than the money spent.

We did not get a L2 charger for the Niro. We're fine with charging at L1 speeds overnight. We're using our dryer outlet to get L2 charging on our Chevy Volt, which makes sense for us since it's got a bigger battery. It cost me ~$30 in parts to move the outlet from our laundry room to the garage on the other side of the wall, and to make a locking adapter to hook the EVSE into the dryer outlet. Many before me have used the Volt EVSE to plug into 240 volt outlets, so I felt comfortable doing so. We could, if we needed to, plug the Niro into the Volt EVSE to get L2 charging during the day if we need a quicker charge, but have only done it once. It only makes sense on the weekends, due to out Time Of Use electric plan.

Out of curiosity, does anyone know if the Niro EVSE can handle 240 volts?
 

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There is no one size fits all answer. For some, L2 chargers make sense. For others, L1 charging is more than sufficient. For yet others, the flexibility is more important than the money spent.

We did not get a L2 charger for the Niro. We're fine with charging at L1 speeds overnight. We're using our dryer outlet to get L2 charging on our Chevy Volt, which makes sense for us since it's got a bigger battery. It cost me ~$30 in parts to move the outlet from our laundry room to the garage on the other side of the wall, and to make a locking adapter to hook the EVSE into the dryer outlet. Many before me have used the Volt EVSE to plug into 240 volt outlets, so I felt comfortable doing so. We could, if we needed to, plug the Niro into the Volt EVSE to get L2 charging during the day if we need a quicker charge, but have only done it once. It only makes sense on the weekends, due to out Time Of Use electric plan.

Out of curiosity, does anyone know if the Niro EVSE can handle 240 volts?
Good question. I've wondered that too.

I assume you mean the stock 120v evse? Connect 120v neutral and hot to 240v hot and hot?

Please try it and let us know how it goes.
 

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Good question. I've wondered that too.

I assume you mean the stock 120v evse? Connect 120v neutral and hot to 240v hot and hot?

Please try it and let us know how it goes.
Since it has a 110v/15a plug, I highly doubt it supports 220v. I wouldn't try it unless you're comfortable with frying it and buying a replacement. :D
 

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The Chevy Volt EVSE also comes with a 120v plug, but people have opened them up and discovered the parts are designed to handle 240v. (https://gm-volt.com/forum/showthread.php?218442-2016-Volt-120v-EVSE-is-L1-L2-Conversion-Capable)

I guess the theory is that they can use the same EVSE in Europe- just put different plugs and labels. In any case, we, along with many other people, have plugged our Chevy Volt EVSEs into a 240v outlet without any problems. I was wondering if it's the same story with the Niro EVSE.
 

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The Chevy Volt EVSE also comes with a 120v plug, but people have opened them up and discovered the parts are designed to handle 240v. (https://gm-volt.com/forum/showthread.php?218442-2016-Volt-120v-EVSE-is-L1-L2-Conversion-Capable)

I guess the theory is that they can use the same EVSE in Europe- just put different plugs and labels. In any case, we, along with many other people, have plugged our Chevy Volt EVSEs into a 240v outlet without any problems. I was wondering if it's the same story with the Niro EVSE.
yes, i've heard the same. Someone try it but be careful.
 

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yes, i've heard the same. Someone try it but be careful.
I have a FB contact from a guy in Calgary Alberta that uses one of the Level 2 EV Portable Plug-In Charger, 110v - 240v like you posted before, and he uses it all the time with no issues. and wow 70$$...


@tigerucla, One thing you need to found out is! what is your nema plug that your charger is using for your Volt ESEV ? The potable 16a that charlesH has posted fits with a nema 6/20, while mine on my full 240v 30a charger, is a nema 6/50R.. Dont know if there is a big difference, but it should all work! :)
 

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Hey guys I am a new Niro PHEV owner and I have a question for you. Does the PHEV come standard with a 3.3Kwh onboard charger?
I want to buy a Level 2 charger. If it is indeed a 3.3kwh onboard charger then I am thinking 3300 watts/240 volts = 13.75 amps maximum charging available at 240 volts. If so does it make sense to buy a Level 2 charger rated at more that 16 amps?
What type of Level 2 charger did you guys go with?. I am new to this and hope to learn from your experience
Kia guy here, the Niro PHEV charges at 208 volts at 16 amps maximum, so Kia recommends at least a 240 volt, 32 amp charger to have spare capacity and maximum charger life. You can purchase a charger here that meets all of Kia's requirements through our Amazon partner program. https://www.amazon.com/b/ref=as_li_ss_tl?node=18746790011&linkCode=sl2&tag=electrek-20&linkId=e071948813f5449558b67f4d23430332&language=en_US
 

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Kia guy here, the Niro PHEV charges at 208 volts at 16 amps maximum, so Kia recommends at least a 240 volt, 32 amp charger to have spare capacity and maximum charger life. You can purchase a charger here that meets all of Kia's requirements through our Amazon partner program. https://www.amazon.com/b/ref=as_li_ss_tl?node=18746790011&linkCode=sl2&tag=electrek-20&linkId=e071948813f5449558b67f4d23430332&language=en_US
Kia may suggest that, but I think it's way overkill. I could see a suggestion of a charger in the 20-25 amp range, but doubling the required capacity is not necessary. If I use my daughter's 40 amp $600 charger (EVSE), it makes no difference to my car. Charge rate is the same, and the charger is loafing. Will it increase the life span of the EVSE? I seriously doubt it. The 16 amp charger I bought was under $200, so even if it lasted a slightly shorter period of time than a larger charger, I could buy three of them for the same cost as the JuiceBox my daughter has.

When I switch to a full EV in a few years, I'll get a higher capacity EVSE anyway, so why not save several hundred in the meantime? Especially since I'll likely be living in a different home by then and have to add new wiring. It would have been especially wasteful for me to have purchased a 32 or 40 amp charger for this Niro, and then later buy an EV that could support a 50 or 60 amp EVSE. I might even be able to sell my current 16 amp EVSE to someone in a few years, save them some money and reduce my overall cost even more.

There are some things that might be worthwhile to oversize, but I don't think an EVSE is one of them.
 

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I noticed the $70 charger is no longer found from the link. The Amazon one cheapest is around $600. How can such a huge difference be explained?
I fear the $70 offer is a scam but there are a lot of $150-200 offers on Amazon and eBay.

https://www.amazon.com/Duosida-Electric-Vehicle-Portable-Charger/dp/B07BGGVD9V/ref=sr_1_15?crid=23V4ULU294AQ9&keywords=eve+l2+charger&qid=1561547052&s=gateway&sprefix=Ev+l2%2Caps%2C420&sr=8-15
 

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I fear the $70 offer is a scam but there are a lot of $150-200 offers on Amazon and eBay.

Charger on Amazon
This is the exact unit I bought. It's works just fine. However, don't be confused about the wording in the description, and one of the Q&A answers. This is not UL Rated, but it uses a UL Approved cord and plug.
 

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It would be a good idea to get at least a 40 amp charger to future proof your charging setup. If you ever get a BEV later down the road, you'll want the additional amperage.
true, but I would have to upgrade my 240v 30a socket to use it. Also, I don't think I will ever get a BEV. PHEV works really, really well for me. PHEV is much cheaper and range fill ups take just 5 minutes. Backwords compatibility to existing infrastructure is a concept that works well for many new product categories.

Having a PHEV is like having both a BEV and gas car in my garage.
 

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Just ordered the cheap one, we'll see. My suspicion is that there is one design and only the male plug changes. If so, I'll make up an adapter for my other aftermarket 120v charger and have 2 that do either 120 or 240. I don't dare try that with the one that came with the car, but it's tempting.
 

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It would be a good idea to get at least a 40 amp charger to future proof your charging setup. If you ever get a BEV later down the road, you'll want the additional amperage.
That's what I recommended to my daughter when they bought the Pacifica. It has a 6.6 kW charger (32 amp) but I suggested getting at least a 40 amp charger in case they replace their Ioniq HEV for an EV version in the future. I wired a 50 amp circuit for them, and they bought a 40 amp JuiceBox.

Speaking of the JuiceBox, it has one thing that really annoys me. When you plug the car into the charger, they are supposed to communicate with each other. I'm sure it's happening correctly, but the app never shows the actual charge level of the car itself. It always starts at zero %, regardless of the actual battery level. Everything else about the charging session is accurate, but it just doesn't show the battery level accurately. Maybe it's just something with their app.
 

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That's what I recommended to my daughter when they bought the Pacifica. It has a 6.6 kW charger (32 amp) but I suggested getting at least a 40 amp charger in case they replace their Ioniq HEV for an EV version in the future. I wired a 50 amp circuit for them, and they bought a 40 amp JuiceBox.

Speaking of the JuiceBox, it has one thing that really annoys me. When you plug the car into the charger, they are supposed to communicate with each other. I'm sure it's happening correctly, but the app never shows the actual charge level of the car itself. It always starts at zero %, regardless of the actual battery level. Everything else about the charging session is accurate, but it just doesn't show the battery level accurately. Maybe it's just something with their app.
I don't think the L2 spec includes battery SOC being communicated to the EVSE . The Juicebox has no way of knowing the battery SOC.
 

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Perhaps not, but it seems like it would be a smart thing to have.
There's definitely been proposals to add this feature and others to the next generation of smart chargers / EVs. That would allow things like delaying charging until rates are below a certain threshold or perhaps using BEVs as grid tied storage to facilitate load leveling.

https://www.digikey.com/en/articles/techzone/2018/mar/bringing-evs-into-the-smart-grid-for-stability-and-security

Wikipedia talks about adding powerline communications to the J1772 standard, that would support this sort of thing.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SAE_J1772
 

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I picked up an L2 16a charger for my PHEV -- I get a full charge in about 2 hours 15 mins from a completely drained battery, makes for being able to do my morning routine (gym - 10 miles rount trip) and be fully charged by lunch time for lunch time errands and again be evening for any evening runs.

I picked the 16a unit up with the 30; chord ; 6-50 plug: https://www.primecom.tech
 
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