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

Important Message for Blink Residential Hosts (Jan 17, 2014)

Fri Jan 17, 2014 9:12 am

Just received the following email from Blink (aka Car Charging):

(from http://us2.campaign-archive1.com/?u=27cf015daa8ea4ba2f6debcf7&id=c545af9044&e=99a4f87d53)
EV Project Extension

As a residential participant in the EV Project, you may have been aware that the EV Project had been scheduled to terminate on December 31st, 2013. While the Department of Energy (“DoE”) has extended the scheduled end date of the project, please be advised that with the DoE's approval, CarCharging has elected to conclude the residential portion of the project as the major goals of the project have been met.

In regard to the warranty and service of your equipment, please be reassured that we will value all of our customers and will honor contract commitments and complete service requests (under warranty terms) reported to Blink Customer Support prior to December 31st, 2013.

Additionally, in the near future, you will hear from us shortly about new home residential charging options, including options to replace your Blink Level 2 Charger with a new Blink HQ or purchasing an extended service plan for your existing Blink Level 2 residential charger. Stay tuned for further information on these options.

We thank you for your participation and your help in making the EV Project a success! We look forward to continuing our partnership.

Blink

Looks like to me that they'll be contacting us to provide a big discount on a Blink HQ if we give them the old Blink. That's probably a good idea from their standpoint as they can use them to deploy and repair commercial stations that are making them money.

Personally, I really like the scheduling functionality of the original Blink, so I'm not inclined to swap it out for a Blink HQ. However, I am excited that maybe we'll start seeing some modified software for the Blink to add additional functionality (kinda like what happened to the Linksys WRT54G wireless routers). :D
Mikiko (2011 Nissan LEAF ETEC) Status:
Reserved: 04/20/10 | Ordered: 10/01/10 | EV Project Blink Installed: 03/22/11 | Delivered: 03/25/11 | VIN: 568

Oregon Electric Vehicle Association | Electric Auto Association

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drees
Moderator
Posts: 6221
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:51 pm
Location: San Diego

Re: Important Message for Blink Residential Hosts (Jan 17, 2

Fri Jan 17, 2014 9:55 am

Interesting, I got a different newsletter even though I don't live in San Francisco:

EV Project Extension

As a residential participant in the EV Project, you may have been aware that the EV Project had been scheduled to conclude on December 31st, 2013. While the Department of Energy (“DoE”) has extended the scheduled end date of the project, with the DoE's approval, CarCharging has elected to conclude the residential portion of the project as the major goals of the project have been met. However, we are delighted to announce that CarCharging has extended the residential contracts for EV Project participants in the San Francisco Bay Area (CA) region based on other regional goals and programs. Therefore, we will continue to service your Blink EV charger under current warranty terms and collect data from the station until further notice.

We appreciate your support during this transition and we look forward to continuing our partnership.
'11 LEAF SL Powered By 3.24 kW Enphase Solar PV

greenleaf
Posts: 519
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 2010 10:06 am
Location: SF Bay Area

Re: Important Message for Blink Residential Hosts (Jan 17, 2

Fri Jan 17, 2014 10:10 am

Is there any advantage with the Blink HQ compared to the regular unit?
2011 Leaf: reserved 4/2010, delivered 3/2011 (VIN 9XX), sold 2/2014.
EVP Blink EVSE installed 4/2011.
OpenEVSE installed 3/2014.
3.22 kW DC Solar PV.

camasleaf
Posts: 631
Joined: Sun Sep 26, 2010 5:20 am
Delivery Date: 17 Jun 2011
Location: Camas, WA

Re: Important Message for Blink Residential Hosts (Jan 17, 2

Fri Jan 17, 2014 10:21 am

I got the same email as the OP. And I am also inclined to stay with the existing Blink, especialy since I replaced the cable/connector with a Leviton 30A.
2011 SLe 06/17/11 Over 82000 miles 66%SOH 14.6kWh
2018 Honda Clarity PHEV $120 gasoline in 5600 miles
5.7kW DC System

rpmdk
Posts: 146
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 12:22 pm

Re: Important Message for Blink Residential Hosts (Jan 17, 2

Fri Jan 17, 2014 10:49 am

I've had my Blink unit almost three years and haven't had a problem (maybe once I had to reset back in the beginning). I guess I'll stick with it. I saw instructions to disable the display and communication functions and just turn it into a glorified plug-in (out) is there an advantage to that?

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davewill
Posts: 4960
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2011 6:04 pm
Location: San Diego, CA, US

Re: Important Message for Blink Residential Hosts (Jan 17, 2

Fri Jan 17, 2014 10:51 am

I'll be interested in what kind of deal they offer. I've always figured if push came to shove, I'd hack the Blink, either by writing new firmware, or with OpenEVSE hardware to keep it going. However, I still have the old handle and don't trust it to work reliably at 30a (even though it shows no signs of heating @ 16a). I've reported my concern on the handle to Blink a couple of times, but since I have no evidence of an actual problem, they refused to do anything.

If I would end up having to shell out to buy a new cord and handle in order to keep it running in the future, I might prefer to go ahead and take the new Blink HQ that presumably won't have that problem.
2014 Rav4 EV, Blizzard Pearl White
2011 LEAF SL w/QC, Blue Ocean, returned at end of lease

MikeD
Posts: 657
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2010 6:14 am
Delivery Date: 12 May 2011
Leaf Number: 592

Re: Important Message for Blink Residential Hosts (Jan 17, 2

Fri Jan 17, 2014 2:03 pm

davewill: You wrote "...don't trust it [J1772 handle] to work reliably at 30a (even though it shows no signs of heating @ 16a)". Maybe this thread is as good as any to have some discussion on a test (or tests) that could be easily done that may allay fears (if justified) of using the typical Blink at 30a. Do you have any ideas in this area?

In my case I expect to be using my Blink for many more years with my 2011 Leaf, so I don't expect to have an overheating problem at any wire termination within the Blink with a maximum 16a current after 2.5 years of daily use. If I were to upgrade to a Leaf in the future with a more powerful charger, I think I would opt for modifying the Blink's maximum charge rate from 30a to 16a -- even if I knew my Blink could handle a higher rate. I just don't normally need that faster charge rate at home as overnight charging easily fully recharges my Leaf. For me a faster charging rate is most desirable away from home at public charging stations. If a second Leaf were bought for this household, I would want to have another Blink (or one comparable in features) also limited to 16a because I do not want to overload my service (nor place undue strain on the neighborhood electrical system).

BTW I have started to use Ideal In-Sure (TM) push-in wire connectors (rated at 600v max) instead of wire nuts for 20a circuits, and taking one apart I can see that the circuit wires (12 AWG max) are pressed (by a spring steel tongue?) against a (tin?) plated copper strip for only about 4mm. That is not a lot of contact area, but it seems to work and of course these connectors are UL listed. Unlike a wire nut, I can visually see if the wires are fully inserted and expect that the contact pressure/area meets the required minimum by connector design and not have to worry if I twisted the wire nut tightly enough, etc. That this works at up to 20a puzzles me that it would be difficult to make adequate wire terminations at 30a including crimps (although crimps may be subject to loosening due to expansion caused by heat).

oakwcj
Posts: 339
Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2011 9:01 am
Delivery Date: 19 May 2011
Leaf Number: 2441
Location: Oakland, CA

Re: Important Message for Blink Residential Hosts (Jan 17, 2

Fri Jan 17, 2014 4:34 pm

drees wrote:Interesting, I got a different newsletter even though I don't live in San Francisco:

EV Project Extension

As a residential participant in the EV Project, you may have been aware that the EV Project had been scheduled to conclude on December 31st, 2013. While the Department of Energy (“DoE”) has extended the scheduled end date of the project, with the DoE's approval, CarCharging has elected to conclude the residential portion of the project as the major goals of the project have been met. However, we are delighted to announce that CarCharging has extended the residential contracts for EV Project participants in the San Francisco Bay Area (CA) region based on other regional goals and programs. Therefore, we will continue to service your Blink EV charger under current warranty terms and collect data from the station until further notice.

We appreciate your support during this transition and we look forward to continuing our partnership.


I DO live in the Bay Area, but I got the same email as the OP. It appears that CarCharging is living down to the low standards of Ecotality. I've already blocked my Blink from transmitting or receiving data over the internet. The chutzpah of the statement that "CarCharging has extended the contracts..." is breathtaking. The contracts have expired and can only be changed by mutual agreement of the parties.
Cayenne Red SL-e
Blink Installed 6/23/11

DesertDenizen
Posts: 399
Joined: Sun Aug 28, 2011 9:23 am
Delivery Date: 11 Sep 2014
Leaf Number: 314507
Location: Tucson

Re: Important Message for Blink Residential Hosts (Jan 17, 2

Fri Aug 01, 2014 2:39 pm

My Blink has been giving me the Test Failure message. After a week Blink/CarCharger finally returned my call and said their repair charge would be 2/3 the cost of a new HQ Blink. They said the HQ does not have the Test Failure problems and comes with a 3 year warranty so I ordered one.
[color=#0040BF]Fully charged by photo voltaic system.
Nov 9 2014 got my 2015 lease, SL. My third Leaf. Tucson AZ. 5,500 miles, 5.2 long term m/kwh. Let us see if the 'lizard' battery does better than my 2011, which lost a capacity bar at 6,771 miles.

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