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Boomer23
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This J Connector Immobilized my LEAF

Wed Apr 27, 2011 10:50 pm

I had a bad experience with a J1772 charging plug pictured here:

(The upper one with the grey plastic body and orange cable. The lower one in the picture is the Nissan supplied Level 1 unit. The difference is clear.)
Image

When I plugged it into the port on my LEAF, I could not get it to release, no matter how hard I tried. And I TRIED. The problem was that the mechanical catch mechanism doesn't have enough range of motion to release from the LEAF port. It will click into place when inserted, but it won't move upward enough to release when you press the release button and pull back.
Image

Image

This took the better part of an hour and involved quite some anxiety and partially disassembling my pristine new LEAF.

To make matters worse, this connector has a hard plastic hood that covers the catch area and prevents the insertion of any tools to help pry it loose. (Fear not, it wasn't energized.)

The final solution was to remove the four bolts that hold the charging port to the LEAF body so that there was enough clearance to insert a tool. The successful tool turned out to be a right angle screwdriver.
Image

I have edited the wording at the beginning of this thread. I had a bad experience with the connector pictured, but I have no evidence to conclude that all J plugs that look like this will not work or will not release properly from a LEAF charging port.
Last edited by Boomer23 on Thu Jul 28, 2011 8:11 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: CAUTION: This J1772 Connector is BAD for your LEAF

Wed Apr 27, 2011 11:03 pm

Can you please tell us who the manufacturer of the mechanically incompatible J1772 connector is?
What make and model of EVSE was this connector attached to?

We certainly want to be on the lookout for this connector and make sure it is not used for any public charging stations.

Later on. it would be good to verify whether the LEAFs J1772 inlet or the J1772 conector is out of compliance with the J1772 spec. It's also possible that the J1772 spec is vague in this and allows the creation of this incomaptibility, At any rate, we should get his straightened out before this problem propagates as the volumes of LEAFS and J1772 connectors grows into the thousands and later 100's of thousands.
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Re: CAUTION: This J1772 Connector is BAD for your LEAF

Wed Apr 27, 2011 11:08 pm

If you're the owner of the offending J1772 connector, you can get out your Dremel to cut off the plastic hood over the release catch and then file the metal catch so that it will release.
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Boomer23
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Re: CAUTION: This J1772 Connector is BAD for your LEAF

Wed Apr 27, 2011 11:18 pm

Here's one example of where a connector that looks like this connector is sold. I have no first hand knowledge of the tucsonev products.

http://www.tucsonev.com/

I don't know the manufacturer of the cable or connector. The connector is not labeled in any way that I could see.

NOTE: I REPEAT, THERE IS NO EVIDENCE THAT THIS CONNECTOR CAME FROM, NOR THAT IT IS SUPPLIED BY OR CARRIED BY TUCSONEV.COM. I HAPPENED TO NOTICE THAT THERE WAS A RESEMBLANCE BETWEEN THE CONNECTOR THAT I HANDLED AND THE ONE THAT I SAW ON THEIR WEB SITE. I DO NOT KNOW IF THEY ARE THE SAME CONNECTOR, NOR DO I HAVE ANY CONCERN THAT THERE IS A CONNECTION BETWEEN TUCSONEV.COM AND THIS CONNECTOR

I don't own the EVSE and I've been asked by the owner not to talk about the EVSE online while he works with the company, who has promised to replace the unit with a proper connector to his satisfaction.

At this point, I recommend that anyone considering the purchase of a new EVSE that is not supplied by Nissan, AV, Blink, Clipper Creek, Leviton, Eaton or one of the other well known companies ensure that they have seen pictures of the J1772 connector and that it is not this unit. If you receive a product with this connector, do not plug it in to your car without a thorough examination and a contingency plan and tools in case it gets stuck in your charging port.
Last edited by Boomer23 on Sat Jul 16, 2011 12:50 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: CAUTION: This J1772 Connector is BAD for your LEAF

Wed Apr 27, 2011 11:33 pm

Thanks for that! I just got through picking a J1772 to NEMA 14-50 adapter so that I can use my RAV4 EV SPI MagneCharger with J1772 charging stations. I have also heard in private conversations that some J1772 connectors from a brand not printed on the connector, which was also not UL Listed had mating issues.

So I concurr with the recommendation - if you want a connector that works, look for hints, like the manufacturer's name emobossed in the connector along with the part number, voltage and current ratings etc. Sitckinkg with well known, recognized brands that have a long reputation of building quality, durable electrical components is also a good idea. I used the high resolution omages of the products on the websites that were selling them when I was picking my J1772 to NEMA 14-50 adapter, zoomed all the way in and panned the whole image to confirm the presence or absence of identifying embossed markings on the connectors.
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garygid
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Re: CAUTION: This J1772 Connector is BAD for your LEAF

Thu Apr 28, 2011 12:29 am

It should be pointed out that the offending grey "nozzle" just
LOOKS LIKE (resembles) the picture at www.tucsonev.com but it is not clear that their current products actually have this "characteristic".

Also, any use of a foreign/strange/untested "nozzle" should BEGIN with a critical inspection of the latching mechanism.
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Boomer23
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Re: CAUTION: This J1772 Connector is BAD for your LEAF

Thu Apr 28, 2011 12:42 am

garygid wrote:It should be pointed out that the offending grey "nozzle" just
LOOKS LIKE (resembles) the picture at http://www.tucsonev.com but it is not clear that their current products actually have this "characteristic".

Also, any use of a foreign/strange/untested "nozzle" should BEGIN with a critical inspection of the latching mechanism.
Agreed, Gary, thanks. I'll edit my former post.
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Re: CAUTION: This J1772 Connector is BAD for your LEAF

Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:00 am

garygid wrote:It should be pointed out that the offending grey "nozzle" just
LOOKS LIKE (resembles) the picture at http://www.tucsonev.com but it is not clear that their current products actually have this "characteristic".

Also, any use of a foreign/strange/untested "nozzle" should BEGIN with a critical inspection of the latching mechanism.
Critical visual inspection alone probably wouldn't be able to reveal this problem. I suspect you'd need a micrometer to measure critical dimensions, and know what your measuring for. Do we have confirmation that the http://www.tucsonev.com/ connector is free of this problem, even though it resembles the offending connector?

Good argument for insisting on manufacturer and part numbers embossed in the connector - so you can identify any ones that might have a problem or a recall by manufacturer and part number. Also if it's a good connector, you may want to lnow who made it so you can buy MORE of them. Like a business that calls your home with caller ID disabled - if they are trying to hide or mis-represent who they are, there's usually a (bad) reason why! Make sure there is caller ID (embossed manufacturer name and part number) on the connectors you buy! If they don't put their name on the connector, it may well be because they don't want you calling them when it breaks due to poor quality or design, and they especially don't want you to call if it ever causes a fire hazard. A reputable company has designed a reasonably safe connector and wants to hear any issues, even serious ones so they can fix the problem.
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Re: CAUTION: This J1772 Connector is BAD for your LEAF

Thu Apr 28, 2011 7:13 am

would it not be easier to post the location of the offender so we know not to use it... or at least modify it before using it?
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Re: CAUTION: This J1772 Connector is BAD for your LEAF

Thu Apr 28, 2011 7:23 am

Don't buy cheap J plugs, one can find decent ones and on the leaf why bother if you have a home EVSE or the factory EVSE for your car. One can have the factory EVSE modified for about the same as a decent plug so why would anyone need a new connector for their LEAF?

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