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Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Thu Sep 24, 2015 12:01 am
by timhebb
A bit of hopeful news on LADWP's ongoing chronic heat-related issues with their network of Quick Chargers deployed around town. Last week I contacted DWP's manager in charge of the project to find out if there were any plans to address the worsening issue.

He emailed back: "We are installing three new units now; with both Chademo and SAECombo cords. It is a different brand and we believe that the new units will work better. I’ve checked with NRG, and they had the same experience with the units we are having problems with."

Later the same day he emailed me again to add, "I heard that the [original units'] vendor just called and would like to offer support. That was after we told them that we are receiving emails about the problems with their units. That is a very positive step."

DWP seems to be committed to resolving the issue of unreliability and frequent breakdowns of the units due to "ambient heat and clogging filters (which is another type of heat problem)," according to the project manager.

I have depended on several of those QC units often, so will be very happy if they become more reliable. This summer there have been a few weeks when 80% of them have been out of service at any one time, a pretty dismal statistic. Perhaps things will be looking up fairly soon.

Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Thu Sep 24, 2015 12:33 am
by Valdemar
NRG chargers of the same brand were rock solid this summer, perhaps they can refer LADWP to the contractor that modded their units.

Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Fri Sep 25, 2015 12:55 pm
by timhebb
Valdemar wrote:NRG chargers of the same brand were rock solid this summer, perhaps they can refer LADWP to the contractor that modded their units.


I mentioned the better reliability record of NRG's chargers in my email to the project manager, and the belief that they had been retrofitted with more durable components to achieve it, but his replies to me did not pick up on that. I also suggested that the manufacturer surely offers a performance guarantee or warranty that they would be obligated to back up. If I spent $20K or more buying each of those units, I would be screaming my head off at the mfr. to get them fixed, and threatening lawsuits if they didn't. Looking at the most recent comments on Plugshare, it does appear that a number of the units that were chronically out of service recently have been working again in the last few days - for whatever reason.

Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Sat Sep 26, 2015 8:33 am
by JasonA
If they are planning on combo units, then hopefully it's ABB or Efacec (both 50kw and SOLID units!!)

Now on to the CSUN issues :roll:

Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Sat Sep 26, 2015 11:58 am
by Valdemar
Plugshare says CSUN is down again, I suspect forever.

Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 1:39 pm
by timhebb
LADWP has begun posting ID numbers on its QC chargers along with a phone number for reporting charger outages or other service issues.

The phone number - (323) 484-3265 - can be called or texted to notify DWP that a charger is out of service and to request repair. The posted notices request users to include the charger ID.

Example: the charger at DWP's Artesian Center substation (near the Pasadena freeway/I-5 freeway interchange) is labeled as "ART #21." When I recently found that charger out of order, I texted the ID info along with the error message displayed, and promptly received an automated reply acknowledging the text and promising to address the issue.

I don't know how many chargers have been posted with the ID/phone notice yet, but it seems EV drivers can use the number and identify a down charger by address or other means in any event. I'd encourage all of us who use any of DWP's network of QC chargers to employ the system to demonstrate our urgent interest in resolving the chronic problems. In other words, the more of us who let them know, loud and clear, that we depend on the system, the sooner the issues are likely to be resolved.

Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Fri Jan 08, 2016 2:54 pm
by timhebb
I recently bought a 2013 Leaf SV with 23,000 miles on the odometer from CarMax, and returned my nearly identical leased '13 Leaf to Nissan (the only major difference being that the leased one had a QC port, which I will miss, but not enough to regret too much, hopefully, since now I have no monthly car payment to make).

The issue is that at 100% charge the guess-o-meter estimates only 77 or 78 miles of range typically, which is several miles less than my leased one normally displayed. The 'new' Leaf displays all 12 capacity bars, while the old one had dropped a bar, I expect because I used QC very often and regularly, even through hot summers in L.A. - battery temps got very high too many times . So I expected the 'new' battery to be a bit healthier than the old Leaf's, but in fact the opposite is true, and that's borne out by my driving experience, not just the guess-o-meter. By the way, the 'new' one was from Georgia, not the desert, so I wouldn't think that would be a big factor.

I don't have a LeafSpy device, but would like to know what LeafSpy would report. At first I wondered if I might have a vehicle that was tampered with, perhaps the capacity bars were reset fraudulently. If I could prove that, I believe CarMax would make it right. The vehicle still has factory warranty coverage until April or May of 2016. I have fewer suspicions about tampering now, but still wonder what is going on with the battery.

If anyone would be willing to share their LeafSpy and knowledge of its secrets, I'd be happy to drive to you or a location you choose to learn about this car's battery, at your convenience. Also I'd be happy to compensate you reasonably for the time, trouble and your 'expertise' with LeafSpy.

Any other alternative thoughts, or suggestions on how I should proceed, would be welcomed! Thanks!

Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Fri Jan 08, 2016 4:01 pm
by Valdemar
Is there any difference in your energy efficiency between the 2 cars?

Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2016 2:52 pm
by timhebb
Valdemar wrote:Is there any difference in your energy efficiency between the 2 cars?

Didn't see your reply til now. No, since I've been driving the new one, the energy efficiency has climbed to match that of the old car. And the new (to me) Leaf just dropped its first capacity bar, which was expected I suppose, so the issue seems more explainable and less troubling.

I can definitely live with the capacity and range available, particularly since I am out of pocket just $3,200 for the vehicle, thanks to this California state program: http://www.replaceyourride.com.

Re: Los Angeles Metro Area Leafers

Posted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 11:00 am
by abasile
Can anyone recommend a good, reasonable electrical contractor who does work in Pasadena? We are considering installing EVSEs at a multifamily rental property. Thanks for the consideration!

Also, we were in Pasadena earlier this week and tried out one of 54 (!) currently-free EVSEs installed in a garage at Caltech, as part of their "Electric Vehicle Adaptive Charging System" research project. (We picked up just enough charge to make it back to the 7-11 QC in San Bernardino.) They were still configuring and testing the EVSEs while we were there. See http://api.plugshare.com/view/location/82444