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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am thinking about buying a Chevy Bolt. I know you can buy the Bolt with a DC supercharger option. My question is, how good is this option?

Also, how does one charge while traveling? I live here in El Paso and want to travel back and forth to Tucson, but I do not see anywhere to recharge.

There are a few Tesla supercharger spots, but that is it.

If someone can help, I can make my decision to buy or not to buy.

The plugs appear to be a J1772. From what I can tell, the plug for the Tesla chargers/superchargers, have a different plug and protocol.

Than you.
 

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No non-Tesla branded vehicle is compatible with (Tesla) Superchargers. There are 3 plug incompatible DC FC standards in the US for consumer vehicles: Tesla Supercharger, CHAdeMO and SAE Combo (aka Combo1 flavor of CCS aka J1772 CCS). Bolt can use #3, if equipped.

Do NOT use the words "Supercharger" or "Super charger" to talk about DC charging a Bolt or any non-Tesla branded vehicle.

You can use Plugshare (app and web site) to find J1772 and SAE Combo chargers. It lets you filter. Alternatively, you can use apps/maps on DC charging providers' web sites (e.g. ChargePoint, EVgo, Greenlots, Electrify America, etc.) to filter for them but you should always check Plugshare reports before going to the site.

how to tell if bolt has DC fast charge? is a visual aid of whether the vehicle has SAE Combo inlet.

SAE Combo network definitely has areas with large gaps but that coupled with J1772 was enough for this guy to do A Chevrolet Bolt EV Set a Cannonball Run Record and No One Noticed | Torque News.

There are adapters that let you use a J1772 equipped vehicle with Mobile Connector or most Wall Connector but NOT Superchargers. Adapter example: https://shop.quickchargepower.com/JDapter-Stub-40-Amp-Tesla-Charge-Station-Adaptor-JDPTRSTB.htm. There can be caveats as Tesla's under no obligation to keep that working. It's related to:
"NOTE 8: Some second generation (GEN2) Tesla charge stations may requre up to 30 seconds to begin charging your EV

NOTE 8: The NISSAN LEAF requires that you first plug into the Tesla charge station, and then wait for 10 seconds up to one minute PRIOR TO PLUGGING INTO THE LEAF"

Also, if the WC is running at 277 volts, it may not work on a Bolt at all.
 

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I am thinking about buying a Chevy Bolt. I know you can buy the Bolt with a DC supercharger option. My question is, how good is this option?

Also, how does one charge while traveling? I live here in El Paso and want to travel back and forth to Tucson, but I do not see anywhere to recharge.

There are a few Tesla supercharger spots, but that is it.

If someone can help, I can make my decision to buy or not to buy.

The plugs appear to be a J1772. From what I can tell, the plug for the Tesla chargers/superchargers, have a different plug and protocol.

Than you.
"DC supercharger option " is for TESLA, DC CCS chargers is for the Bolt.
Get it. No point getting a long milage EV with out it.
I suggest Reading posts on here, the search function is great
 

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I just looked on a better route planner and plotted a route from El Paso to Tucson. According to the app, you'd have to make two charging stops at Electrify America chargers, one at the Lordsburg Chevron and the other at the Walmart in Benson, AZ. You can also check the plugshare app for chargers. Like others have said, the fast charging option for the Bolt uses CCS type plugs, and you can filter for that on plugshare.
 

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I'm leasing my 2019 Bolt and would not purchase one without the option. Also, if I were to actually buy an EV, I would only consider a Tesla just because of their charging network. You punch in a destination and they calculate the estimated usage and recommend stops at their charging locations along the way. In a Bolt, there is no built in Nav so you have to download multiple apps like Electrify America, ChargePoint, EVgo, and plugShare and figure it out on your own. Plus, hope to god that you aren't blocked by a gas vehicle and also hope that the charger is working. With the MSRP of my Bolt Premier being 44k (not what I paid, of course), you really aren't that far away from a Model 3.
My Bolt is strictly for commuting duties so I don't have to worry about long distance trips and as I've stated before, I never would take a long trip in an EV yet unless it's a Tesla.
 

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I am thinking about buying a Chevy Bolt. I know you can buy the Bolt with a DC supercharger option. My question is, how good is this option?

Also, how does one charge while traveling? I live here in El Paso and want to travel back and forth to Tucson, but I do not see anywhere to recharge.

There are a few Tesla supercharger spots, but that is it.

If someone can help, I can make my decision to buy or not to buy.

The plugs appear to be a J1772. From what I can tell, the plug for the Tesla chargers/superchargers, have a different plug and protocol.

Than you.
I'm in Las Cruces up I-10 from you. I haven't made a Tucson trip yet, but will at some point. There's now Electrify America units along the route. You can check out the ones in El Paso. There's none in Las Cruces, but they have ones in Deming. DCFC option is a must if you want to make any trips over 200 miles. Check out plugshare and EA site to find chargers. A trip can be put together on abetterrouteplanner from El Paso to Tucson.
 

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You've already gotten a ton of good information. The two key tools for charging and trip planning are Plugshare and abetterrouteplanner. The former will show, and allow filtering, of charging stations, while the latter will actually plan a trip with charging between points. Plugshare is critical as it allows for checkins so it's fairly easy to see the status of charging stations. For example the Lordsburg NM Electrify America charger is showing at a 9/10 with positive checkins within the last week. With 7 chargers at the site, you can be fairly confident that station will be available when you need it.

ga2500ev
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You've already gotten a ton of good information. The two key tools for charging and trip planning are Plugshare and abetterrouteplanner. The former will show, and allow filtering, of charging stations, while the latter will actually plan a trip with charging between points. Plugshare is critical as it allows for checkins so it's fairly easy to see the status of charging stations. For example the Lordsburg NM Electrify America charger is showing at a 9/10 with positive checkins within the last week. With 7 chargers at the site, you can be fairly confident that station will be available when you need it.

ga2500ev
I really appreciate all of the awesome information the forum has provided. I looked at the picture of the plug in port for fast charging of the Bolt. It has 3 holes in the shape of a triangle and the two holes below it. There appear to be 2 additional holes outside of the triangle of holes. The reason I ask about these 2 additional holes is that on the PlugShare site, it shows a picture of the CCS/SAE plug and I do not see the 2 other holes. Are those 2 additional holes outside of the 3, for normal slow charging?

Also, for fast charging using the CCS/SAE charger, how fast can I charge from empty to full?

Thanks again for helping out the newbie.
 

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I really appreciate all of the awesome information the forum has provided. I looked at the picture of the plug in port for fast charging of the Bolt. It has 3 holes in the shape of a triangle and the two holes below it. There appear to be 2 additional holes outside of the triangle of holes. The reason I ask about these 2 additional holes is that on the PlugShare site, it shows a picture of the CCS/SAE plug and I do not see the 2 other holes. Are those 2 additional holes outside of the 3, for normal slow charging?

Also, for fast charging using the CCS/SAE charger, how fast can I charge from empty to full?

Thanks again for helping out the newbie.
Under good conditions (not cold weather) at a high powered DC fast charger (All Electrify America, some ChargePoint, some EVGo) It takes a bit over an hour to go from 10% to 80%, and it takes a bit over an hour to go from 80% to 100%... for obvious reasons most people don't charge past 80% when taking a long trip unless they have to shoot a gap in charger coverage. The Lordsburg, NM Electrify America station is brand new. I did the trip you are talking about late in 2019 before the Lordsburg station was put into service, and without it there you had to charge to 100% in Deming, NM to shoot the gap over to Benson, AZ... having the Lordsburg station available means you will be able to make the trip in an hour less time than it took me to make the same trip.


how to tell if bolt has DC fast charge? is a visual aid of whether the vehicle has SAE Combo inlet.
Quoted above you will see that cwerdna posted a link to show how to tell the difference between a regular J1772 connection and a CCS "combo" connection.

Later,

Keith
 

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Also, for fast charging using the CCS/SAE charger, how fast can I charge from empty to full?
It depends on battery temperature (not the same as ambient temp) and charging amps (or kW). The fastest would be around 2 hours, but that's from zero to 100%. I hope you never run your car to zero. And charge rate really slows down about about 70-80%. So most people stop at 70-80% when using a DCFC. Check out the graphs in this post:
Of course these are for optimum conditions, which rarely happen. You can realistically expect to spend 30-45 minutes to go from 20% to 70% on an EA charger.
 

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I really appreciate all of the awesome information the forum has provided. I looked at the picture of the plug in port for fast charging of the Bolt. It has 3 holes in the shape of a triangle and the two holes below it. There appear to be 2 additional holes outside of the triangle of holes. The reason I ask about these 2 additional holes is that on the PlugShare site, it shows a picture of the CCS/SAE plug and I do not see the 2 other holes. Are those 2 additional holes outside of the 3, for normal slow charging?
Here's a CCS inlet like the one installed on the Bolt:


The top is the J1772 part of the connector for slower AC charging. The two bottom sockets are for the DCFC charging. A CCS connector will plug into the entire connector.

Plugshare doesn't show all the pins of the J1772 part of the connector. The bottom smaller two pins are control pins. Even though the image on plugshare doesn't show them, you can trust they are on the actual J1772 and CCS connectors.
Also, for fast charging using the CCS/SAE charger, how fast can I charge from empty to full?
A lesson quickly learned is that EV charging speed isn't constant. It's the nature of batteries to charge slower the more full they get. EV terminology for this is called taper. So what happens is that EVs like the Bolt will charge at full speed when the battery is close to empty, and it tapers at specific points of fullness (called State of Charge or SOC in the EV world). For the Bolt, it slows down at about 50%, 70%, and 80%.

The upshot is when fast charging, the most efficient strategy is to charge at low SOC and to stop as soon as there is enough charge to get to the next charger or destination.
Thanks again for helping out the newbie.
No problem. You're asking good questions.

ga2500ev
 

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Well, we might not get an update from @steve48possibleBoltuser as he had quite the dealer experience trying to get his Bolt. Only available Bolts in his area were over 200 miles away. Steve made a deal on a Bolt from a neighboring state and the dealer offered to deliver the Bolt by driving it 260 miles to his destination. Most everyone who is familiar with EVs and Chevrolet dealers already have cringed and pretty much know how this is going to turn out.

Steve gets a call from the guy driving the car that he's stuck in Truth or Consequences New Mexico having pretty much depleted the battery by driving what one would guess had to be at least 80 mph. Steve graciously agreed to meet the guy there by driving 120 miles while the guy said he was charging the car and it should be charged by 10:30 pm. Turns out the guy called back to the office for help and they directed him to stop at T or C because there were some superchargers there. Yep, those superchargers. Since that obviously didn't work, they sent the guy to an RV park where he plugged in the Bolt's charge cord. When Steve got there, he couldn't believe it, the car said it would be charged by 10:30 in three days. The guy didn't notice this little detail.

With no faith in the car or dealer, Steve back out on the deal. Don't blame him a bit.
 

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Let me guess: the dealer was in Albuquerque. I-25 North and South is a CCS charging desert. I'm surprised though that the Bolt only made it 140 miles to Truth or Consequences before depleating the battery. The dealer driver must have been gunning it the whole way.

Unfortunately EVs still have enough of a learning curve that one cannot go road tripping without reading the instructions. ABRP shows there's no route between the two.

ga2500ev
 

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Let me guess: the dealer was in Albuquerque. I-25 North and South is a CCS charging desert. I'm surprised though that the Bolt only made it 140 miles to Truth or Consequences before depleating the battery. The dealer driver must have been gunning it the whole way.

Unfortunately EVs still have enough of a learning curve that one cannot go road tripping without reading the instructions. ABRP shows there's no route between the two.

ga2500ev
Yes, from Albuquerque. There's two level 2 stops that were possible that ABRP ignores. First stop could have been in Socorro and the second available was in Las Cruces. It was not clear that the guy even started out the journey with a full battery. The lack of actual details hung a big dark cloud over the whole deal. As you noted, why did the car only make it 140 miles. It did have 50 miles left on it, so the guy had the common sense to stop and not completely render the car a brick.
 
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