ChrisH
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jul 25, 2012 5:35 am
Delivery Date: 25 Jun 2012
Leaf Number: 019859

Re: I-key system fault

Wed Jul 25, 2012 11:53 pm

Update from local Nissan service department said that I completely depleted the battery to the point where it could not be recharged. Dead flat, and not coming back online. I'm not sure what they did between our 2 conversations (AM and PM), but a follow-up message from service department said that they were being told by Nissan to completely and fully charge the vehicle before returning it, (which they didn't do when they delivered it), so apparently they must have sorted out the issue with the 'dead flat' battery system. I'm still a bit skeptical.

Part two of the updated conversation is that Nissan Engineering have apparently informed the service department that I should not be using the 110 trickle charger that the car comes with to charge the vehicle. They claim this is for 'emergencies only'. First I've heard of that. I am being told that I will need something more powerful and permanent to charge the vehicle, and varous inquiries are being made to have me acquire a 220v docking station. I'm ok with it, but let's get real here for a second. If the included adapter is an 'emergency only' device, why include it as the primary charging device? If I had wanted to buy the charging dock at the time of purchase, I could have bundled it as part of the financing package, but now that I've taken delivery of the car and used it, I'm on the hook for a major unplanned expense that's required to operate the vehicle properly. That's totally backwards.

It seems like maybe the sales and service staff could use some better training to inform customers of the requirements of buying an EV vehicle. The Nissan website is really well done, but it wasn't until I boght the car and had a problem that I learned that 100 miles is a fictious number, or that the remaining mileage meter lies irreverently.

Seems like there are still some 'early adopter' issues to work through. Just hope the car is OK and healthy. We love it, but the inconvenience of being unreliable in terms of reporting energy consumption and availability is a problem, buyer education is really important, and a general lack of available QC (440) chargers that can juice the car in a pinch is a real problem. All of these are solvable, but more or less core to my unfortunate event.

I'm still skeptical that this is the entire issue, but remain hopefully optimistic.

Will know more tomorrow once I connect with the service department and get the latest details and debriefing.


ChrisH wrote:Same problem yesterday. Would not accept a charge, also. Off to dealer for diagnosis and repair.

My biggest concern is that I am hoping that the dealership has trained technicians who are capable and competent to repair. Basically the Leaf is an Eletrical Engineering (EE) monstrosity, with highly complex electrical systems, and I'm not 100% convonced that the average car tech is going to have the education and training to properly diagnose and treat EE problems at this level.

We'll see shortly. Got a free loaner for the next couple of days.

Leaf has 1445 miles on the odometer, and we've owned it roughly 6 weeks.

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planet4ever
Posts: 4674
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Leaf Number: 1537
Location: Morgan Hill, CA, south of San Jose

Re: I-key system fault

Thu Jul 26, 2012 1:22 am

ChrisH wrote:Update from local Nissan service department said that I completely depleted the battery to the point where it could not be recharged. Dead flat, and not coming back online.
There are two batteries; an ordinary 12v auto battery, and the big 400v 24kWh traction battery. I assure you that if the traction battery was so depleted that it couldn't be recharged you would need a new (maybe $10,000?) battery, or at least a bunch of new cells. So it was just the 12v battery that was dead. If that happens, the computers in the car can't run, and without them you can't charge the traction battery -- until you charge the 12v battery first.

ChrisH wrote:Part two of the updated conversation is that Nissan Engineering have apparently informed the service department that I should not be using the 110 trickle charger that the car comes with to charge the vehicle. They claim this is for 'emergencies only'. First I've heard of that. I am being told that I will need something more powerful and permanent to charge the vehicle
Total HOGWASH!
The only "power" you need to worry about is what comes out of the battery, and you've already discovered you have plenty of that. 120v can charge the battery every bit as reliably and completely as 240v; it just takes longer to do it. You've got someone in your local service department who is making up stories to cover his ignorance. Do NOT be tricked into getting an expensive 240v charging station. From the stats in your first post you are putting about 250 miles/week on the car. That is enough that you may want to question whether you want to get by with only the trickle charger. Depending on where and how you are driving you could well need to have the car plugged in 8-10 hours per day. That's no problem if you can charge at work, and is still quite doable with home charging, until you decide you want to use the car more. The only real "problems" with trickle charging are that it can be less convenient, and it does use a little more electricity. Oh, and after plugging into the wall outlet hundreds or thousands of times the receptacle could wear out. Big deal - it's a $5 part, easily replaced.

Before you decide to spend thousands of dollars on a fancy EVSE, do some research here. Depending on your situation you might be able to get 240v charging for as little as $300.

ChrisH wrote:It seems like maybe the sales and service staff could use some better training to inform customers of the requirements of buying an EV vehicle.
It sure sounds as if that is true for the dealer you are going to. Do you have others within range? It would help us understand your situation if we knew where you were located.

Ray
End of April 2013: Traded my 2011 SL for a 2013 S with charge pkg.

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keydiver
Posts: 1051
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Delivery Date: 08 Dec 2011
Leaf Number: 16484
Location: Hobe Sound, Florida
Contact: Website

Re: I-key system fault

Thu Jul 26, 2012 6:33 am

It sounds to me also that it is only your 12 volt battery that is dead. Is your Leaf an SV or an SL? If its parked outside, the solar panel on an SL should keep the 12 volt battery fully charged. Are you sure you didn't leave the car turned ON, or a door ajar, or something else that would have drained the 12 volt battery? When it comes to the 12 volt battery, the Leaf is no different than any ICE vehicle, and just as supceptable to drains from accessories being left turned on.
As planet4ever said, this has NOTHING to do with which charger you are using. The factory 120 volt EVSE will work for you just as well as their $1800 AV charging station.
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ztanos
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Re: I-key system fault

Thu Jul 26, 2012 7:11 am

Problem solved http://evseupgrade.com/, this will give you 240v and you can still use it for 120v if you wanted to. No expensive install needed.

ChrisH
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jul 25, 2012 5:35 am
Delivery Date: 25 Jun 2012
Leaf Number: 019859

Re: I-key system fault

Thu Jul 26, 2012 7:50 am

I live in Gig Harbor, WA. The Dealer is located in Fife, WA (Tacoma). There are Nissan dealers in Bremerton and Olympia, Seattle and Bellevue, but those are definitely less convenient. The trickle charger worked fine for me thus far, as most of my driving is during core daytime hours and I can usually charge it uninterrupted overnight (8-12+ hours).

The 'low power' event was taken seriously - I pulled over immediately and called AAA, shut the car off, and waited, and the vehicle was towed home. At the time the event happened, there was still power, allbeit minimial power, and apparently the 12v battery was fully charged -lights, etc. were fully operational.

Just to add more confusion, the car did turn on the following day - i.e. I was able to see the normal display, computer, CarWings was active, I could even take calls via Bluetooth, but it would not enter 'ready to drive' mode, and strangely, I could put it into N, but not into R or D - they simply were not even available when selected. The main display showed the 'I Key System Failure' despite both FOBs being present on my person while in the car, and, of course, as I mentioned earlier, the vehicle would not accept a charge from the 120v trickle charger, which I put on the car from 8am-3:20pm without results. When I initially connected the 120v trickle charger, it showed green and orange lights (ready, charging), but when I returned later in the afternoon, it showed no lights - no green, no orange, which struck me as unusual. I got in to make a trip and found the car in the same exact state (inoperable), and that was the point where I initiated the service call and had the car towed to the dealer.

I have done some limited research on EVSE charging models, but I'll obviously want to become a lot more educated rather than take my queues from the dealership, who seem to still be educating themselves on an 'as-needed basis' with mixed results.

Thanks for all the great counsel and advice! Much appreciated!

planet4ever wrote:
ChrisH wrote:Update from local Nissan service department said that I completely depleted the battery to the point where it could not be recharged. Dead flat, and not coming back online.
There are two batteries; an ordinary 12v auto battery, and the big 400v 24kWh traction battery. I assure you that if the traction battery was so depleted that it couldn't be recharged you would need a new (maybe $10,000?) battery, or at least a bunch of new cells. So it was just the 12v battery that was dead. If that happens, the computers in the car can't run, and without them you can't charge the traction battery -- until you charge the 12v battery first.

ChrisH wrote:Part two of the updated conversation is that Nissan Engineering have apparently informed the service department that I should not be using the 110 trickle charger that the car comes with to charge the vehicle. They claim this is for 'emergencies only'. First I've heard of that. I am being told that I will need something more powerful and permanent to charge the vehicle
Total HOGWASH!
The only "power" you need to worry about is what comes out of the battery, and you've already discovered you have plenty of that. 120v can charge the battery every bit as reliably and completely as 240v; it just takes longer to do it. You've got someone in your local service department who is making up stories to cover his ignorance. Do NOT be tricked into getting an expensive 240v charging station. From the stats in your first post you are putting about 250 miles/week on the car. That is enough that you may want to question whether you want to get by with only the trickle charger. Depending on where and how you are driving you could well need to have the car plugged in 8-10 hours per day. That's no problem if you can charge at work, and is still quite doable with home charging, until you decide you want to use the car more. The only real "problems" with trickle charging are that it can be less convenient, and it does use a little more electricity. Oh, and after plugging into the wall outlet hundreds or thousands of times the receptacle could wear out. Big deal - it's a $5 part, easily replaced.

Before you decide to spend thousands of dollars on a fancy EVSE, do some research here. Depending on your situation you might be able to get 240v charging for as little as $300.

ChrisH wrote:It seems like maybe the sales and service staff could use some better training to inform customers of the requirements of buying an EV vehicle.
It sure sounds as if that is true for the dealer you are going to. Do you have others within range? It would help us understand your situation if we knew where you were located.

Ray

ChrisH
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jul 25, 2012 5:35 am
Delivery Date: 25 Jun 2012
Leaf Number: 019859

Re: I-key system fault

Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:00 am

Great link. what isn't clear is if the unit 'up-converts' 120v to 240v, or if it simply adds another adapter for 240v plug. This looks like it may be the economical answer to a fixed 240v EVSE unit, which are quoted @ about $2k, installed by Nissan.

I'd probably have to just buy one outright, as I couldn't be without the 120v charger for an extended period of time unless I was travelling and didn't need the use of the vehicle.

Thanks for posting this. :D

ztanos wrote:Problem solved http://evseupgrade.com/, this will give you 240v and you can still use it for 120v if you wanted to. No expensive install needed.

DarkStar
Posts: 2066
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:06 am
Delivery Date: 25 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 568
Location: Hillsboro, Oregon, USA
Contact: Website

Re: I-key system fault

Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:28 am

ChrisH wrote:Great link. what isn't clear is if the unit 'up-converts' 120v to 240v, or if it simply adds another adapter for 240v plug. This looks like it may be the economical answer to a fixed 240v EVSE unit, which are quoted @ about $2k, installed by Nissan.

I'd probably have to just buy one outright, as I couldn't be without the 120v charger for an extended period of time unless I was travelling and didn't need the use of the vehicle.

Thanks for posting this. :D

ztanos wrote:Problem solved http://evseupgrade.com/, this will give you 240v and you can still use it for 120v if you wanted to. No expensive install needed.

The unit does no conversion at all. 120v in, 120v out or 240v in, 240v out.

If you are charging the vehicle fine though with just the 120v plug there is no reason to go to 240v. Also, can you clarify if it was your regular 12v battery that went dead or the 400v traction battery? Thanks!
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Reserved: 04/20/10 | Ordered: 10/01/10 | EV Project Blink Installed: 03/22/11 | Delivered: 03/25/11 | VIN: 568

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91040
Posts: 948
Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2011 10:36 pm
Delivery Date: 06 May 2011
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Re: I-key system fault

Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:36 am

The EVSE upgrade works on either 120V or 240V circuits. At 120V, it draws 12 Amps; at 240V it will draw 12 or 16 Amps depending on which version you get. 240V at 16A is the same charging rate as the commercial units.

The company will send you a unit before you send them yours with a refundable deposit.

ChrisH wrote:Great link. what isn't clear is if the unit 'up-converts' 120v to 240v, or if it simply adds another adapter for 240v plug. This looks like it may be the economical answer to a fixed 240v EVSE unit, which are quoted @ about $2k, installed by Nissan.

I'd probably have to just buy one outright, as I couldn't be without the 120v charger for an extended period of time unless I was travelling and didn't need the use of the vehicle.

Thanks for posting this. :D

ztanos wrote:Problem solved http://evseupgrade.com/, this will give you 240v and you can still use it for 120v if you wanted to. No expensive install needed.
1st Capacity Bar loss 30k mi 16.25mo 2nd- 49k mi 25.5mo 51.5Ah
3rd- 73k mi 36.5mo 46.9Ah 71% SOH 50.9Hx 4th- 86.5k mi 43mo 42.61Ah 64% SOH 43.79Hx
5th- 101k mi 50.5mo 38.38Ah 58% SOH 37.02Hx Replaced Battery 9/28/15 104.2k mi 36.13Ah

portableal
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 7:43 am
Delivery Date: 02 Aug 2011

Re: I-key system fault

Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:42 am

http://evseupgrade.com/styled/
they offer a advanced unit, they mail you a reworked unit and then return yours for a refund. ($800.00) no down time.

HighDesertDriver
Posts: 454
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2011 7:29 am
Delivery Date: 09 Sep 2011
Leaf Number: 8765
Location: Palmdale, CA

Re: I-key system fault

Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:00 am

ChrisH wrote:Great link. what isn't clear is if the unit 'up-converts' 120v to 240v, or if it simply adds another adapter for 240v plug. This looks like it may be the economical answer to a fixed 240v EVSE unit, which are quoted @ about $2k, installed by Nissan.

I'd probably have to just buy one outright, as I couldn't be without the 120v charger for an extended period of time unless I was travelling and didn't need the use of the vehicle.

Thanks for posting this. :D

ztanos wrote:Problem solved http://evseupgrade.com/, this will give you 240v and you can still use it for 120v if you wanted to. No expensive install needed.
If you delve into the EVSEupgrade site a bit more you will find that for a few bucks more (and a temporary hold for the unit's value) they will send you an upgraded unit first. Put your new unit in the box, return it, and you're done. A second unit might be useful, however, if you often charge away from home because you avoid the hassle of moving the single unit to/from the car.

The upgraded unit does not just bump up the voltage. Instead it is drawing at least twice as much power by using both legs of a 240V circuit. We have the R2 version which pulls 3700W. Of course, using a 240V charger may require some extra up-front expense. The best situation is that you already have a 240V plug in the garage; the worst is that your service panel is already maxed out and on the other side of the house. In any event, if 120V charging works for your daily needs, don't feel the need to jump to 240V. 240V has real benefits, but there are lots of people here on MNL that have never used anything other than 120V at home and are quite happy.
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