Charging in the rain/snow

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by amy2421, Aug 17, 2018.

To remove this ad click here.

  1. amy2421

    amy2421 Active Member

    I searched the forum and looked in the mini-owner's manual but I can't find any information about this. Are there any safety issues with plugging in or unplugging the charger in the rain, snow, etc? Unfortunately I have to park my Clarity in the driveway so I will have no choice this winter, and right now my car is plugged in and it has been raining all night. I saw an aftermarket hanger for the charging cord which included a free "rain bonnet" but I didn't see anything like that included with the OEM charger so I can't see how it could be required.
  2. To remove this ad click here.

  3. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    I was concerned about that too as I charged with the Level1 until my ChargePoint was installed or to be brutally honest, until I got my garage cleaned out.

    There is no problem plugging into the car in the rain (manual says don’t stand in a puddle and dry your hands, also think of all the public chargers out in the open) but you should keep water away from the brick and especially it’s connection to the electrical outlet or properly rated extension cord plug (not recommended in manual). The brick is water resistant but not immersible. So your idea of a bonnet, while not required, wouldn’t hurt.
    If you’re using a receptacle inside your garage then no problem; just keep the brick off the floor. If powered from outside, you should have a NEMA rated cover that covers the receptacle when it is in use. This is not the little flip up cover installed on most home which just protects it when it has nothing plugged into it. You really want a large cover that has room to close over the charger plug. Same goes for any connection to an extension cord. Small covers are made for this.
    Ans finally the circuit should be GFI protected and well grounded.

    Here is a link to a thread on this and my post has further explanations and pictures of the outdoor enclosures.

    Happy and safe charging!
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2018
    amy2421 likes this.
  4. BertBDJ

    BertBDJ Member

    We’ve charged our egolf via the 120 volt for a year outside. Lots of rain and snow. No issues. But we do have a properly GFI outlet and the big clear bubble outlet cover, once plugged in, it closes to create a waterproof environment. (The cable goes through a rubberized hole that seals out the water. This really should be stressed. We also just created a waterproof cape for the charge plug and the brick. Best way I can describe it is a waterproof
    Cloth that we Velcro around the cable and it hangs over the brick to shield it. Looks like those squirrel protectors for bird feeders.

    Sent from my iPhone using Inside EVs
    KentuckyKen and amy2421 like this.
  5. amy2421

    amy2421 Active Member

    I'm sorry I should have specified that I'm using a Level 2 charger. I have a ChargePoint Plug-in model that is plugged into an outlet installed by an electrician and it is inside the garage. My concern is the charger handle itself when plugged in overnight if it rains or snows, because the charger port door will be open so any snow or freezing rain will be inside of the charging port and around the charging handle.
  6. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    No problem. It’s built to take it.
  7. To remove this ad click here.

  8. amy2421

    amy2421 Active Member

    I am worried if snow or ice falls into the charging housing inside the charging port, if that will create an issue.
  9. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    I don’t believe so based on:
    1. No warnings in manual
    2. Plethora of outdoor unprotected public chargers.
    3. Standardized J1772 plug/ receptacle
    4. If it did, think of the lawsuits!
    5. In Feb, I just brushed away the o/n accumulated snow and closed the door.
    6. I trust Honda engineering.

    I have two caveats though.
    First, don’t leave door open with no charging handle plug protecting the metal contacts from rain/snow.
    Second, freezing rain could jam up the hinge and lock while it is open during the O/N charge. In that case don’t pry or force the door or you run the risk of damaging the hinge mechanism. I’d use gentle hand impact and/or warm (not hot!) water if it froze up completely.
    amy2421 likes this.
  10. Jaketesla

    Jaketesla Member

    Amy, here's a video from a guy in the GTA from last winter:
  11. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    The blow dry styling is a good trick, but how in the world did he get snow inside the receptacle???? How is that possible???
    Did he leave the door open and not plugged in? Did he not brush the snow away before he unplugged? Really??

    I charged while it blowed/snowed O/N about 2” and got no snow on the contacts. I just brushed away the snow before I unplugged. Also charged in freezing rain and other than having to gingerly break up the ice encrusted handle and charging port, I had no problem with slush getting into the receptacle contacts.
    I’m at a loss to understand how he got into that situation in the first place. But at least he had a good recovery.
  12. To remove this ad click here.

  13. It depends on the snow/ice and the mixture.
    There's no "great way" to over a foot of snow off a car in an large area, so that no snow/etc gets into the charge port.
    There are times when it's snowing very heavily and the wind is blowing hard!
    Plus, there can be multiple layers of ice, snow, ice, snow, ice, snow... Oh, what fun - not!
    And, sometimes, the lowest layer of ice will not come off the car.

    Plus, "people are people". And, many people are down right ***********s when it comes to "common sense", or even the slightest amount of care about others.

    In at least one way, I'm lucky.
    Where I work, no one is allowed to have uncleared-off snow on their vehicle (all vehicles must be properly cleared).
  14. Iirc, Amy is a neighbor?
    HI! Hello from New England!

    There's a lot of specifics. Unfortunately, I don't have the time.
    Semi quickly, when EV chargers came out, "they went against everything I learned and taught in Electrical Engineering".
    So, WE'LL ALL DIE!!!

    I did look very deeply into the charging specifications, how the chargers and vehicles worked, etc.
    Okay, yea, I was wrong.
    BUMMER, we won't all die.
    Uhm wait..., that's a good thing! :)

    First, I'm assuming TOP QUALITY CHARGERS connected to proper circuits.

    A) No problem plugging in the charger!
    Initially, there isn't any high voltage or AC on the big contacts.
    The car has to talk to the charger, and the charger has to talk to the car. That's done over the small 5V contacts - that's voltage similar to 3 AAA batteries. But, with very very little current.

    When taking the charger off the car, as soon as the person pulls the handle release, that will also immediately shut off any high voltage.
    In fact, the voltage is shut off well before the latch lifts up enough to release the handle.
    Fwiw, "live insertion" has been around for a while. In fact, USB is a great example of live insertion/removal.

    Yes, people should try to keep the car's charge port area clean and dry as reasonable.
    Paper towels are cheap. Use those.

    A few more things:
    1) ALWAYS plug the charger handle into a receptacle!
    You can buy a receptacle/holder on Amazon cheaply.
    You don't want any condensation to collect on the contacts.

    2) Yes, having over a foot of snow on the car, and burying the charger is a PITA!
    Yes, it often isn't simple to just clean the snow off and disconnect the charger.

    Imho, one of the best solutions that I've seen so far is:




    3) Most charging units should always be covered/protected.
    If needed, they do make specific charging units that are designed to be outside in any weather. If needed, install one of those. Yes, they are expensive.
    If needed, get a good charging unit with a 50-foot cord.

    Another good read:

    Examples of charger receptacles:

    Good Luck!
    amy2421 and David A like this.
  15. Sorry, I couldn't resist. :)

    Yes, I often live my life by what I learned in Grand Theft Auto. ;-)
    :) :)

    Being a life-long New Englander, with a number of Canadian-born friends, I know that "GTA" means "Grand Theft Auto".
    Opps, I meant Greater Toronto Area. :)
  16. iluvscuba

    iluvscuba Active Member

    That's Modern Nomad from Toronto (I believe), he has quite a few youtube video regarding the Clarity after he bought it last Dec. He should be registered on this board
  17. amy2421

    amy2421 Active Member

    Thanks for all the advice! I am in the GTA as well, although I have some good friends in NE. :)

    I am going to look into getting one of those outdoor hanger/receptacles. Right now I either hang it in the garage or coil it up on top of a plastic hose reel outside. Never thought about moisture getting into the contacts if it isn't plugged into a receptacle.
  18. Akinto

    Akinto Member

    I am the owner of a white Touring , and I also live in the GTA. All of my charging is outside: I have no garage. We'll see how it goes.
    amy2421 likes this.
  19. amy2421

    amy2421 Active Member

    Do you have an L2 charger or are you using the cord and a regular outlet?
  20. Akinto

    Akinto Member

    I only charge at public chargers in the City. No garage or driveway. Over the summer we used the Honda L1.
  21. Breezy

    Breezy Member

    Wondering if anyone's used the AmazingE connector for their supplied level 1 charger. Looks like more weather protection than the BougeRV. Does the cap that's on a tether on our connectors fit when holstered?
  22. ryd994

    ryd994 Active Member

    I'm not worried. Although a gfci socket is always recommended.
    Can't be too safe.
  23. amy2421

    amy2421 Active Member

    Breezy likes this.

Share This Page