Well, it’s been a great week of commuting and charging at work, but now that I’m home for the weekend, it’s time to plug in in my garage.
I wish my garage wasn’t so full of accumulated junk, but it is, so I have to use the method I’ve used with my other electric test cars–I plug in the charging unit inside the garage, attach the charging plug into the socket inside the “gas” door on the right rear corner of the car (backed in, of course), and then lower the garage door down to about an inch away from the concrete.
This is easy in clear weather, but is less pleasant when it’s raining. I did check, though, and the water doesn’t seem to want to drain into the garage. With Fidelio, my blue 500e, visiting into the springtime, I really need to clean out the garage so he can sit inside.
Since Fidelio came to me new, with just 79 miles on the odometer, I am the first journalist to drive him, so I got to take the charger out of its original plastic bag from the factory.
It came with a slim User Guide, but I’m an old hand at home charging, so I left it in the bag for future journalists.
Fiat provides a sturdy, and long-enough, cord. You’re cautioned not to use any extension cords when charging. Most are probably not rugged enough to handle the job.
When it’s plugged in, you can see it working by the movement of the green lights in the bar above the Fiat logo. There’s also a light inside the car, on the top of the dashboard, that shows an approximate level of charge in the car–kind of like the five dots on a Fitbit Flex.
So, I set it up and that was that. Sadly, home current, at 120 volts (known as Level 1 charging) is very slow. My level 2 ChargePoint chargers at work (240 volts) are much more efficient.
Here’s a record of my four visits to the chargers this week from the ChargePoint phone app. Fidelio had a partially full battery when I plugged in, but was topped off by lunchtime (on Wednesday through Friday).
The first charge, on Jan 19, was in the afternoon, and the battery was 2/3 full. The others were typical, and show the amount of estimated range, time, and cost for the charge for each session. Interestingly, the addresses vary, although the six chargers are all right next to each other. 🙂