Chevy Bolt EV Forum banner

1 - 20 of 28 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am admittedly not very handy... but I had no idea there were so many options for plug types. We were planning to have a 50 amp Level 2 charger installed at our home. I was looking at the AxFast 32 amp from Costco, which has a NEMA 14-50 plug.

We plan to take our 2021 Bolt to visit my wife's family, about 190 miles away. They live on a farm and have the 2 higher amp outlets on the farm. It looks like one says NEMA10-50P. The other says 30A 125/250V... not sure what type it is, but not NEMA 14-50. Are there any EVSE that are compatible with either outlet? If not, I saw Amazon and others sell NEMA10-50P to NEMA 14-50 adapter cords. Would that work and is that safe?

We'd really like to be able to take the Bolt on the trip and recharge once we get there without having to stay 2+ days with the Level 1 charger. There are few, if any, fast chargers on the route so I also don't want to rely on filling up entirely along the way. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
34775
34776
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,834 Posts
1st one is a NEMA 10-30. 2nd one is a NEMA 10-50. You can only use the 50 amp one with your 32 amp charge cord. The 10-50P to 14-50R adapter is your best bet and should work fine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,834 Posts
We were planning to have a 50 amp Level 2 charger installed at our home. I was looking at the AxFast 32 amp from Costco, which has a NEMA 14-50 plug.
Just noticed that you haven't gotten the AxFast 32. Actually, you can get an adapter for the 10-30 on amazon so you can use the charge cord that came with the Bolt. Should be able to fully charge the car in 24 hours.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Oh, that's another option. I am planning to get the AxFast 32. It looks like the The 10-50P to 14-50R adapter is about $40 and then I can use the Level 2 charger on the road. Is that correct? I'd prefer to be able to charge in 10 hours or so instead of 24 hours if possible.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
269 Posts
Yes, there are a confusing number of outlets available...

Costco sells two different AxFast chargers. One is 16A, and the other is 32A. I use the 16A AxFast charger, which I got on sale at Costco and have been happy with as a "travel charger". I hadn't noticed before, but the two chargers come with two different A/C cord options, which makes sense. My 16A charger comes with a NEMA 6-20 plug molded onto the A/C cable. This lets you plug it into a 240V 20A outlet - which I admit is not a very common outlet type. And the charger also comes with a 10-30 adapter cable, which would let you plug it into your first photo - the common 10-30 "dryer outlet", similar to what's in my basement. The charger also comes with a 5-15 adapter cable, which is the basic household 120V outlet.

The 32A charger has a 14-50 plug molded onto the A/C cable, and does not come with any adapters. If you got an adapter to plug the 32A charger into your mother-in-law's 10-30 outlet, it would probably blow the breaker, because the charger will try to deliver 32A to the car, but the outlet (and presumably the circuit breaker that protects the outlet) will only support 30A delivery.

My 16A AxFast charger would work fine with the 10-30 dryer outlet, because it only delivers 16A to the car (and therefore only draws 16A from the 30A outlet.)

If you plan to use the AxFast charger as your home charger as well as a "travel charger", then it's probably best to get a 32A charger and an adapter to use the 10-50 (50 A) outlet at the in-laws'. If you are only planning to use the AxFast charger for travelling - primarily to the in-laws', then I'd consider buying the 16A charger and save $100.

Here are some numbers, rounded off for convenience, and available in about 50,000 other threads on this site:

Watts = Volts X Amps. KW is 1000 Watts. Your car has a 60 KWh battery. You go around 3-4 miles/KWh, giving you a range of 200-240 miles on a full charge.

A 240V 16A charger provides 240 * 16 = 3.8 KW to your car, and will take 16 hrs to charge the 60 KWh battery from E to F.
A 240V 32A charger provides 240 * 32 = 7.6 KW to your car, and will take 8 hrs to charge the 60 KWh battery from E to F.

If you arrive the in-laws' in time for dinner, and leave after lunch the following day, the 16A charger will have time to fill your battery (as it does mine following my 100-mile drive to the lake). I plug in when I arrive in the evening, and my battery is fully charged sometime overnight (I don't know or care when), so I'm ready to go in the morning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'd prefer to just buy the one charger and I'd rather have the faster one. So I think we'll go with the 32 amp and then the 10-50P adapter.

Just curious... the trip is about 190 miles. If we drive 65 MPH and under and don't blast the AC... could we make it, assuming we start with a full charge. There's a fast charging station about 100 miles in if needed. Just curious if it's not freezing cold out if 190 is doable, assuming not driving fast and not blasting the AC.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
351 Posts
I'd prefer to just buy the one charger and I'd rather have the faster one. So I think we'll go with the 32 amp and then the 10-50P adapter.

Just curious... the trip is about 190 miles. If we drive 65 MPH and under and don't blast the AC... could we make it, assuming we start with a full charge. There's a fast charging station about 100 miles in if needed. Just curious if it's not freezing cold out if 190 is doable, assuming not driving fast and not blasting the AC.
Depending on terrain and wind or rain you should have no problem for 190 miles run....
Flat terrain is usually 3.2-3.7 miles per KWH .... or better at 65 MPH ... AC is irrelevant it will use between 400-800 watts per hour. So let's say you are driving for 3 hours with AC it will use between 1.2 KW - 2.4 KW for 3 hours .
Make sure you have tires up to 40-42 PSI for less rolling resistance. Also this data are with factory Michelin low rolling resistance tires. Other aftermarket brands can lead to higher consumption.
Here is the picture of my trip from 100% to 4.73% SOC Driving entire trip 64 MPH on cruise with about 20% of trip hills and rest flat terrain...
Have Telek PID'S and some app to keep close eye on SOC and if you know terrain and weather conditions about halfway see how much battery you have used and will rest be sufficient with margin at about 5-10 % to spare.
Also I have forgotten to mention my entire trip was with tail wind around 8-16 MPH...and using regen last couple miles going downhill lowered my KWH 3-5 miles if my memory serves me right.... information center would otherwise show 63+ KWH used...but GM information center is subtracting all energy gains from total energy used... Miles traveled could be deceiving in this scenario with my trip.
AC was maybe used for 1 hour because of cozy 73°F weather outside.
34777
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,834 Posts
Just curious... the trip is about 190 miles. If we drive 65 MPH and under and don't blast the AC... could we make it, assuming we start with a full charge.
Should be fine if you drive at that speed. All you have to do is drive a little slower to get more range. I was able to drive my 2017, that has a slightly smaller battery, 250 miles. Your mileage will vary! 190 miles should be easy. Do remember that you can lose some range depending on wind, rain, and change in elevation in addition to the other factors you listed. Make sure your tires are at pressure too.
 

·
Registered
2020 Chevrolet Bolt
Joined
·
508 Posts
Another option, a bit more expensive but also more flexible, is to get a Level 2 charger that allows you to adjust the amperage. I have a Juicebox EVSE that can have a maximum charging rate (amperage) set:

It's more expensive than the AxFast, but could serve double-duty as a home charger and travel charger for 32A and 24A (10-30 plug), with the appropriate plug adapters.
 

·
Registered
2019 Chevy Bolt LT, Cajun Red
Joined
·
583 Posts
What is a nema 10-50 plug? no ground?
hot-hot-neutral?

Will the evse with 14-50p work ok without a ground?

Edit:
from NEMA 10-50P to 14-50R Adapter for EV – EVSE Adapters

FAQ about grounding of 10-50 outlets:

It’s a common misconception that 10-50 outlets aren’t grounded. Actually they are grounded, but not in the typical way. Since the 10-50 outlets only have three conductors, the ground and neutral are shared, and both are present on the outlet’s center slot. Our EV adapter has been designed to route the ground connection from the 10-50 outlet while leaving the neutral alone. This way you still get a safe grounded connection. The neutral is not used by EV chargers – it’s only used for 120 volt applications such as the timer on an electric dryer. So no additional grounding is necessary as that has been taken care of in the design of the adapter. All you need to do is plug it in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
351 Posts
What is a nema 10-50 plug? no ground?
hot-hot-neutral?

Will the evse with 14-50p work ok without a ground?

Edit:
from NEMA 10-50P to 14-50R Adapter for EV – EVSE Adapters

FAQ about grounding of 10-50 outlets:

It’s a common misconception that 10-50 outlets aren’t grounded. Actually they are grounded, but not in the typical way. Since the 10-50 outlets only have three conductors, the ground and neutral are shared, and both are present on the outlet’s center slot. Our EV adapter has been designed to route the ground connection from the 10-50 outlet while leaving the neutral alone. This way you still get a safe grounded connection. The neutral is not used by EV chargers – it’s only used for 120 volt applications such as the timer on an electric dryer. So no additional grounding is necessary as that has been taken care of in the design of the adapter. All you need to do is plug it in.
Well explained...thank you
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
963 Posts
the ground and neutral are shared, and both are present on the outlet’s center slot.
Technically this is not true. One mandate of the NEC is that neutral be bonded to ground at exactly one spot: the main electrical box. So the neutral of a 10-30 outlet is typically home run to the main electrical box, where it is bonded to ground.

While functionally it operates the same way, technically it's only a neutral.

The important difference is that neutral lines are designed to carry current during normal operations while safety grounds are only designed to only carry current during fault conditions. As such a 10-30 can function as a pair of 120V circuits in addition to supplying 240V.

Neutral carrying current can cause issues. Say there is a 100A subpanel. Code specifies that neutral can only be bonded at the main panel. So, there are 4 wires hot-hot-neutral-ground to the subpanel and the neutral and ground are not connected in the sub panel. Someone plugs the EVSE into a 10-30 coming out of that subpanel. But there are also 120V circuits tied to that subpanel too. If a 120V device is plugged in and on, then there is current on the neutral line between the subpanel and main panel. The EVSE may recognize that the circuit isn't actually grounded and may fault because the neutral isn't actually at 0 volts.

All this to say is that it usually works, but one should be careful.

ga2500ev
 

·
Registered
2020 Bolt
Joined
·
197 Posts
Is there anyway to make a NEMA 10-30 outlet handle more amps? Like without having to spend much money? Had a guy come out and tell me i needed a new breaker box as mine is 150 amps and maxed out. Said it would be $1700 for a new box not including installing a new outlet to charge my car. Since i have the 10-30 outlet i just wondered if it can be made to handle more power for cheap?
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
1,638 Posts
Is there anyway to make a NEMA 10-30 outlet handle more amps? Like without having to spend much money? Had a guy come out and tell me i needed a new breaker box as mine is 150 amps and maxed out. Said it would be $1700 for a new box not including installing a new outlet to charge my car. Since i have the 10-30 outlet i just wondered if it can be made to handle more power for cheap?
The 10-30 outlet is rated for 30A. It may or may not be OK with 32A (Bolt maximum AC draw). That is a risk you have to ask yourself if you are willing to burn the house down to get a couple more Amps for charging.

The circuit breaker ultimately controls the max current delivered to the load. The wiring must also be adequate to carry heavier loads.

A 150A main panel may be able to deliver more current to this one branch circuit with a 40A breaker instead of the 30A, the panel generally is maxed out when you have no room for more breakers. So, a 40A replacing a 30A would probably be OK from the panel load perspective, but the wiring and outlet should match the max current to be safe. Don't assume that adding up the rating of each breaker in the box and reaching the 150A of the box is a hard limit, most circuits are overbuilt and never carry anything close to the load they are rated for, particularly 120V circuits for lights and other low load things. If I add up the breaker ratings in my 125A box, it comes up to 300A or so. And my electricians said absolutely no problem both when I added the EVSE, and when I remodeled the kitchen.

Replacing the outlet with a 10-50 or 14-50 would typically cost <$20, but if wiring needs to be pulled, that can add more cost. Of course, there are electrician costs if you hire someone to do it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,451 Posts
Seeing the proliferation of L2 and DCFC across the country, I think I would have been just fine with the OEM EVSE and adapters. It's nice to have a L2 32A, but definitely not required.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
963 Posts
Is there anyway to make a NEMA 10-30 outlet handle more amps? Like without having to spend much money? Had a guy come out and tell me i needed a new breaker box as mine is 150 amps and maxed out. Said it would be $1700 for a new box not including installing a new outlet to charge my car. Since i have the 10-30 outlet i just wondered if it can be made to handle more power for cheap?
No. You've been charging at 120V up until now. You're purchasing a 16A EVSE. Clearly both are sufficient for your charging needs.

You can get up the 75% max charging rate on the socket you have now with a 24A EVSE without changing anything. And you've already had an electrician tell you it cannot be done without a major renovation.

Given that, why is upgrading so important to you?

ga2500ev
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
963 Posts
Seeing the proliferation of L2 and DCFC across the country, I think I would have been just fine with the OEM EVSE and adapters. It's nice to have a L2 32A, but definitely not required.
It's a YMMV situation. For someone like me, who has a slow speed 25 mile commute, charging speed is irrelevant. For someone who drives 100+ miles per day, it's much more important.

In the end many max out charging because of FOMO. Seems to me that those many are spending a lot of dollar just to get peace of mind.

ga2500ev
 

·
Registered
2020 Bolt
Joined
·
197 Posts
The 10-30 outlet is rated for 30A. It may or may not be OK with 32A (Bolt maximum AC draw). That is a risk you have to ask yourself if you are willing to burn the house down to get a couple more Amps for charging.

The circuit breaker ultimately controls the max current delivered to the load. The wiring must also be adequate to carry heavier loads.

A 150A main panel may be able to deliver more current to this one branch circuit with a 40A breaker instead of the 30A, the panel generally is maxed out when you have no room for more breakers. So, a 40A replacing a 30A would probably be OK from the panel load perspective, but the wiring and outlet should match the max current to be safe. Don't assume that adding up the rating of each breaker in the box and reaching the 150A of the box is a hard limit, most circuits are overbuilt and never carry anything close to the load they are rated for, particularly 120V circuits for lights and other low load things. If I add up the breaker ratings in my 125A box, it comes up to 300A or so. And my electricians said absolutely no problem both when I added the EVSE, and when I remodeled the kitchen.

Replacing the outlet with a 10-50 or 14-50 would typically cost <$20, but if wiring needs to be pulled, that can add more cost. Of course, there are electrician costs if you hire someone to do it.
I have added so much to the breaker box since i bought the house in 2004. Just a small 2 bedroom on the gulf built in 1973. There is no more room in the box. I have my two way cord and my L2 charger should be here in the next hour. I will see how 16 amps does. I am sure that is plenty for me.
 

·
Registered
2020 Bolt
Joined
·
197 Posts
No. You've been charging at 120V up until now. You're purchasing a 16A EVSE. Clearly both are sufficient for your charging needs.

You can get up the 75% max charging rate on the socket you have now with a 24A EVSE without changing anything. And you've already had an electrician tell you it cannot be done without a major renovation.

Given that, why is upgrading so important to you?

ga2500ev
I guess i think of charging speed like i did with horse power in my Corvettes as it is always nice to have more. I am sure 16 amps at L2 will be more than a enough. But it is always fun to think what 50 amps and a another charger will do. This all new to me so kinda fun to ask dumb Q's. If you all ever need to know about telescopes well then i can tell you anything you need to know, but electric and breaker boxes and outlets are not my thing. But learning a little from you guys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
963 Posts
I guess i think of charging speed like i did with horse power in my Corvettes as it is always nice to have more. I am sure 16 amps at L2 will be more than a enough. But it is always fun to think what 50 amps and a another charger will do. This all new to me so kinda fun to ask dumb Q's. If you all ever need to know about telescopes well then i can tell you anything you need to know, but electric and breaker boxes and outlets are not my thing. But learning a little from you guys.
It will charge faster. And likely 99% of the time that faster charging won't make any real difference, especially in your situation.

BTW a 50A circuit does nothing for a Bolt as the fastest it can charge is 32A.

If you really wanted to you could install a 30-32A EVSE on your dryer circuit. It's not like a circuit breaker has an ammeter in it that clicks off when 30 amps is reached. It's a thermal device that requires a level of heating to trigger. And it's likely that 32 amps on a 30 amp circuit isn't going to generate enough heat to trigger even with 2-3 hours worth of usage. I currently live on the edge of this situation as I power my 30 amp Bosch EVSE using my dryer's 10-30 circuit. It doesn't violate the 80% rule because that rule doesn't apply until you get to continuous usage which is 3 or more hours at a time. With my 500e, even when it's dead flat it's just a shade over 3 hours to charge to full. The breaker has never triggered this in use case.

Of course everyone has to judge their own level of risk. NEC codes are in place to try to minimize most egregious faults. But they have very high safety margins.

ga2500ev
 
1 - 20 of 28 Posts
Top