Leviton EVSEs and BMW Active E

Regular readers may note that I reported a video many months ago regarding some weird grinding noises when I plug my Active E to a Ford branded Leviton charger at a dealership.  It would start the charge, but this really unnerving grinding sound occurs.  The first time this happened, I unplugged my Active E and left the dealership without much of a fuss.

I experienced the same grinding sounds months later at ANOTHER Ford dealership.  This time, it was during the process of assisting my mother look for her first EV.  Which resulted in her choice of the 2013 Nissan Leaf SV in Ocean Blue.  This time, I needed the charge, so I left it in while we did our test drive and negotiations.  Apart from the grinding noise, the car did take a charge and that was that.

In preparation for the pending removal of access to BMW’s EVSE when the i3 is launched, I have started looking at several “transportable” EVSEs and decided on purchasing a Leviton EVB40-PST.  This is a 40Amp 9.6kw EVSE that uses a NEMA 6-50 plug to deliver 40 Amps and was a good way to future protect from chargers that are up to 9.6kw and greater than the 6.6kw chargers out there.  The Active E was rated at 7.2kw and I wanted to make use of that and the i3 is supposed to be at 7.4kw and I wanted to be ready.  So, I had my electrician wire up another EVSE location a few days ago.

Well, it looks like there is an incompatibility between the Leviton and ActiveE.  The symptoms are similar to the ones found at Ford.  However, this time right after the grinding sound starts, the fault light comes on and the EVSE stops charging.

So, I guess I’m returning this one to Amazon.

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rEVolutionary armed with a Tesla Model S S85 and a Tesla Roadster, when his wife let's him borrow it. Formerly driving a BMW Active E (2012-Feb to 2014-Feb). Dennis has been driving EVs since he found himself on the BMW Active E trials on February 2012. As a result of his involvement in the Active E program, he became Accidentally Environmental. Aside from this blog, he often tweets @dennis_p. When not driving, he can be found on the following Tesla/EV forums - teslamotorsclub.com, teslamotors.com, and model3ownersclub.com as AEdennis or on speakev.com as Dennis. In the interest of full disclosure, Dennis has an inherent bias toward electric vehicles and has an investment in and is LONG Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA).

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