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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello! I bought a 2020 Bolt a few days ago and am trying to charge it at home with the Level 1 charger for the first time. I've seen a bunch of similar threads, but not one with this exact situation.

I own a 2012 Nissan LEAF and have been charging it off this outlet for years. Tried to charge the Bolt with the standard Level 1 cable and it charged for a while (not sure how long), but wasn't working when I woke up this morning. There was a red light and inside the car it said "temporary override" or something like that.

Then I tried to charge it with my Nissan Level 1 cable and it works! But I worried this might be bad for it, so I unplugged it again and tried the Bolt cable. Worked for about 5-10 minutes and then went to red again.

1. Are there are any issues using my Nissan charging cable with my new Bolt?
2. Any idea what the heck is wrong with my Bolt cable given that the Nissan one is working? I tried the cable in a bathroom GFCI outlet and it was still a red light. Also, I have the charging set to 8 amps to be conservative.

Any advice is appreciated! I am not a technical, DIY person, by the way!
 

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Shouldn't be any issues using the Leaf L1 cord. You are the second person in the past few days I have seen noting this kind of issue with the stock Bolt L1 cord, maybe Clipper Creek had a bad batch?
 

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The EVSE GM uses is very sensitive to anything that might be wrong with the power source. It's possible that the LEAF's EVSE is more forgiving.

More than likely, there is something wrong with your circuit that isn't triggering the LEAF's EVSE but that the Bolt EV's EVSE is picking up. Maybe a loose ground or something of that nature (that's what I've encountered before, anyway).
 

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recommend taking the Bolt EVSE to another location (neighbors house? friends?), plugging it in and seeing if it faults. Try to charge the Bolt if possible there as well to see what it does.

if it doesnt fault in the other location, then it eliminates the Bolt EVSE as being defective (or at least makes it less likely)
 

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A couple years ago when I had my Volt, the EVSE started going red and not charging; it had worked for about a year before that. I replaced the outlet with a hospital grade 15A outlet with screw connections (old one had the push type connections). That fixed the problem and I never had another issue. The Volt and Bolt share the same EVSE and I think it is sensitive to heat and can detect subpar connections. Trying another outlet/house is a good idea and if that works, maybe replace the outlet with a heavy duty one.

Mike
 

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In several of the other threads on this subject, people have pointed out that the Bolt charger does NOT like GFCI circuits/outlets. Electrical building code usually calls for GFCI to be used in locations where wet conditions are likely, such as bathrooms and kitchens - and perhaps garages. It can be tricky for a homeowner to tell whether a given outlet is GFCI-protected, because there are several different ways to implement such protection. If GFCI is causing the problem in your garage outlet, then you're almost guaranteed to see the same problem in your bathroom outlet. It's possible that both outlets are on the same wiring circuit in your house. As others have suggested, you should try plugging in your charger in another outlet - like your bedroom or living room (which is less likely to be GFCI protected), or in a friend's house or your workplace.

Also, you've probably seen in the other threads you apparently have read (kudos to you!) that it shouldn't matter if the charger is plugged into your car or not. If the red light comes on when your charge, it will probably come on even when you're not charging.

It's hard for me to imagine what condition would cause the red light to come on after 15 minutes, rather than coming on right away when you plug in the charger, unless perhaps the plug is overheating. If you put your hand on the rubber wall plug after the red light comes on, is the plug warm? Maybe your neighborhood is subject to power fluctuations? I used to work with a guy who owned an electrical motor repair shop. Common industrial motors are quite sensitive to line voltage and will burn up when the voltage is too low. He said he could always tell when the local power company had problems in some part of town. He would get like a dozen motors from businesses along one street in the city. None of the businesses realized that the business next door had also burned up a motor. But from his shop he would see them all come in during the same week/month/etc.
 

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I'd bet it's the thermal switch opening in the Bolt's OEM EVSE because the outlet's connections are poor, causing the connection to overheat. Like others have suggested, I'd start by replacing the outlet with a new commercial grade one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you to everyone for chiming in with your ideas. I had an electrician come today and I read him some of your thoughts. He says I have a commercial grade GFCI outlet with 20 amps and he wasn't sure why it wasn't working. He cleaned it out (I don't know what that means) and then we plugged it back in and the green light came on and this time it kept charging for at least two hours, at which point I had to go drive somewhere. So good news! Maybe that's all it needed? He said that if it happens again then maybe the outlet is worn out and it will cost about $125 to replace.

I am happy to have it charging again and excited about my Bolt. My 2012 LEAF has only 5 bars and a range of about 25 miles, which I've been living with for about three years. Major upgrade!
 

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...I unplugged it again and tried the Bolt cable. Worked for about 5-10 minutes and then went to red again.
The EVSE that comes with the Bolt has a temperature sensor in the A/C plug that goes into your wall outlet - it's there to detect problems with the wall outlet or poor connections to it that might cause it to overheat. When the light on the EVSE goes red, have you noticed whether or not the A/C plug that's plugged into the wall outlet is warm?

If it is, then the solution might be as simple as opening up the wall outlet and removing/reattaching the wires securely to the outlet (with the circuit breaker turned off, of course!). Or, if the outlet itself looks to be in poor shape, replacing it with a new one.
 

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Thank you to everyone for chiming in with your ideas. I had an electrician come today and I read him some of your thoughts. He says I have a commercial grade GFCI outlet with 20 amps and he wasn't sure why it wasn't working. He cleaned it out (I don't know what that means) and then we plugged it back in and the green light came on and this time it kept charging for at least two hours, at which point I had to go drive somewhere. So good news! Maybe that's all it needed? He said that if it happens again then maybe the outlet is worn out and it will cost about $125 to replace.

I am happy to have it charging again and excited about my Bolt. My 2012 LEAF has only 5 bars and a range of about 25 miles, which I've been living with for about three years. Major upgrade!
I'm guessing by "cleaned it out", he means he removed corrosion or other build-up on the surface of the contacts internal to the outlet. This would actually make a lot of sense. With that cleaned up, the EVSE plug will make much better contact, resulting in less heat build-up.

Here's to hoping that fixes your problem!
 
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