Canardian
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Delivery Date: 23 Sep 2013

Charging with L1 portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:23 am

I wonder if a portable 230V/9.5A 2200W generator can be used to charge my Nissan Leaf Tekna.
It would fit perfectly in the trunk of the car (47cm/60cm/47cm, 44kg), so I would have no range limits if it would work.
It looks like the electricity output is similar to my home electricity (230V/10A), or is there some other things to consider too?
Last edited by Canardian on Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

LeftieBiker
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Re: Charging with portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:27 am

There are several problems. The amperage the generator puts out is too low to do more than trickle charge even at full throttle, the power is probably "dirty" square-wave output instead of sine wave, and the exhaust would have to be routed outside the car. This is in addition to the obvious environmental, efficiency and common sense objections...

This idea comes up all the time even in two-wheeled EV forums. Yikes.
Last edited by LeftieBiker on Tue Jun 18, 2013 6:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
Scarlet Ember 2018 Leaf SL W/ Pro Pilot
2009 Vectrix VX-1 W/18 Leaf modules, & 3 EZIP E-bicycles.
PLEASE don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

Canardian
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Re: Charging with portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:34 am

Ok, good to know that I need to check for a sine wave type generator. Exhaust is no problem since I would just carry the generator outside of the car when running it. But theoretically if charging takes 12h to 100% (=250km@60km/h), then charging for 1h could already give 40km range (since charging at lower % is faster), which could be enough to reach the next 30min->100% fast charge station.

swaltner
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Location: Wichita, KS

Re: Charging with portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 6:15 am

No experience on the Leaf yet, mine is coming sometime in July, but there was a huge thread about this on teslamotorsclub.com. I suspect the Leaf would be similar. The title of the thread was something along the lines of "Hack charging on a generator".

As was mentioned here, for it to have a chance of working, you want an inverter based generator that can create a true-sine wave. The cheaper non-inverter generators just put too much noise in the power. The other thing that seemed to help was to turn the charging current down. If the generator was only running at half-capacity, it had a better chance of working.

Like you mention, this was primarily being planned as an emergency type situation where you hit Turtle mode away from any charging, so you plug in to get your vehicle charged enough to make it to a "real" outlet. While it could be done, I wouldn't want to be lugging around a gas generator in the back of the Leaf. Who wants to smell that gas all the time for the odd time that you run out of charge. Just preemptively stop somewhere and top off.
2013 Leaf SV

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EVDRIVER
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Re: Charging with portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 7:45 am

To avoid redundant threads please search the threads using the google search tool, this topic is covered extensively.

smkettner
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Re: Charging with portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 7:49 am

evse upgrade can throttle the amps down to the rating of the generator.
1 bar lost at 21,451 miles, 16 months.
2 bar lost at 35,339 miles, 25 months.
LEAF traded at 45,400 miles for a RAV4-EV
I-Pace on order for end of 2018 delivery

LeftieBiker
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Re: Charging with portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 7:53 am

EVDRIVER wrote:To avoid redundant threads please search the threads using the google search tool, this topic is covered extensively.


It would have been helpful to http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=4047 LINK to a topic, too.
Scarlet Ember 2018 Leaf SL W/ Pro Pilot
2009 Vectrix VX-1 W/18 Leaf modules, & 3 EZIP E-bicycles.
PLEASE don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

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TomT
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Re: Charging with portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 8:28 am

Note that most such generators will not properly handle the ground test of the EVSE and thus will not charge. You can make an adapter with a plug and a couple of resistors to solve this problem. This was discussed in detail in the other generator thread on the forum...
59,991 miles/12 bars/289 Gids/68.54 AHr/101% SOH/101.64% Hx 7May15 w/ new Lizard (barely made the warranty).
71,770 miles/12 bars/256 Gids/59.04 AHr/88% SOH/87.92% Hx 3Mar16 at lease return.

Now driving a 2016 Volt Premier.

smkettner
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Re: Charging with portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 8:47 am

TomT wrote:Note that most such generators will not properly handle the ground test of the EVSE and thus will not charge. You can make an adapter with a plug and a couple of resistors to solve this problem. This was discussed in detail in the other generator thread on the forum...

Is that true with 230/240 volts? I thought the ground/neutral bonding check was just a 120 volt issue.
1 bar lost at 21,451 miles, 16 months.
2 bar lost at 35,339 miles, 25 months.
LEAF traded at 45,400 miles for a RAV4-EV
I-Pace on order for end of 2018 delivery

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EVDRIVER
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Re: Charging with portable generator?

Tue Jun 18, 2013 10:02 am

LeftieBiker wrote:
EVDRIVER wrote:To avoid redundant threads please search the threads using the google search tool, this topic is covered extensively.


It would have been helpful to http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=4047 LINK to a topic, too.


This would be a full time job. It would be helpful if members would try a simple search first. Feel free to provide this service:) Unfortunately this forum needs far too much baby sitting and has far too many redundant threads.

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