Closing garage door on charging cable

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by Kathy, Jul 29, 2018.

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  1. Kathy

    Kathy New Member

    My garage is full with storage so I always park in the driveway. I just bought my Clarity yesterday and discovered that the OEM charging cable is not long enough to reach my outdoor outlet that I planned to use. There is an outlet in my garage that I can juuuust barely reach if I pull up within kissing distance of my garage door. (Obviously an extension cable or longer charger is in my future.) But charging from the garage with my car in the driveway means closing the garage door over the cable. Is this contraindicated in any way?

    Any recommendations on a longer charging cable? I will be getting a level 2 eventually but I need some electrical work done first.
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  3. weave

    weave Active Member

    The cable is thick enough I fear to cause damage to your garage door if it pressed down hard on it.

    I'm in the same situation for now. If you just press to open and immediately press again it should stop the garage door 2-3 inches up and you can then safely run it under.

    Or pull the red release cable on the track while the garage door is open, then manually drop it so it's just resting on the cable and not pressing on it. If needed, shove a broom handle between one of the rollers and an opening in the track to prevent someone from opening it by hand.
  4. Odobo

    Odobo Active Member

    Please don't close the garage door door over the cable. You will have higher risk of fire than using a 12 gauge extension cord to use your outdoor outlet.
    Omgswify likes this.
  5. Schaffer970

    Schaffer970 New Member

    Put anything that is just taller than the cable (maybe a piece of 2X4) next to the cable and let the garage door close on that. Problem solved until you get an extension cord for the outside outlet.

    Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk
    insightman likes this.
  6. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    All good advice. Never pinch an electrical cable, even if your garage door has a rubber or vinyl gasket at the bottom. (BTW, you can replace those for as little as $15/18 ft door)
    Use the 2x4 idea or as I did, play the game of when to stop the door before it hits the cable. I got pretty good at it before I cleaned out my garage and my ChargePoint arrived.
    Omgswify likes this.
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  8. Atkinson

    Atkinson Active Member

    Good thinking!
  9. They make various cable/hose/etc covers for driveways/etc.
    You can get something like the following, and cut to the desired length if you want.
    Durable Cable Ramp Protective Cover - 2,000 lbs Max Heavy Duty Drop Over Hose & Cable Track Protector, Safe in High Walking Traffic Areas - Cable Concealer for Outdoor & Indoor Use - Pyle PCBLCO22
    Price: $37.60

    These get used at construction sites, and even businesses.
  10. Odobo

    Odobo Active Member

    Yep we use these on our production floor... The only thing I don't like about using this under garage door is that you may need to adjust the door sensor since the door may think it hit something
  11. ClarityPHEVer

    ClarityPHEVer Member

    We have a 2” long piece of pvc tubing threaded on the charger cord that we align with the garage door path so the cable isn’t pinched by the door. The tubing has a slot cut in it (which is how we got it on the cord) that also provides a flat resting surface so it doesn’t roll out of place as the door closes.
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  13. Abhishek Singh

    Abhishek Singh New Member

    Hi, I'm in the same situation. However, I read somewhere that Honda does not recommend using extension cable. Anyone on this forum using extensions, and running into issues??
  14. Kailani

    Kailani Member

    You are correct about not attaching an extension cord, though a 6-footer would probably be okay. If you get a level-2 charger (highly recommend) be sure to get the 25-foot cord.
  15. The charger Honda supplied with your clarity is a 110V 12 Amp charger. In my testing with a "Kill A Watt" device, my charger spikes at the beginning to 11.13 amps before quickly settling in at 10.75 amps for the remaining charging cycle. Get yourself a decent 12/3 extension cord thats rated for 15 amps and you should be fine. Heres an example.
    lordsutch likes this.
  16. jorgie393

    jorgie393 Well-Known Member

    Re extension cords: The general feeling from a prior thread is that of course Honda has to forbid extension cords, since there are issues with proper sizing of cords...and the potential for wear and tear even of a proper cord. They don’t want any part of it.

    That said, a properly sized extension cord has wire gauge that is similar or more than the wall wiring, and if cared for should be safe.
    As long as quality cord, on shorter end, no fatigue in use, and 12-3 not 14-3 gauge, I’d be comfortable with this as a temporary workaround personally. (I have one in my trunk for when I travel).

    Wouldn’t want if for all time. Certainly better than crushing cord w/door, though the 2x4 protecting block would solve this problem.
  17. weave

    weave Active Member

    The other thing they say is to make sure the 110 outlet is the only outlet on a circuit. I think that is a bit BS too. I'm just aware that I shouldn't be doing anything on other outlets on that circuit that might push it over 15 amps (and newer homes have 20 amp wiring everywhere so it's even less of an issue). Like my outside plug is on same circuit as my dishwasher -- that has a heating element in it. I most definitely don't run them both at the same time.
  18. su_A_ve

    su_A_ve Active Member

    The only outlets I could use power the garage door opener (1/2 HP belt) and a few low voltage lights (about 100w power supply). The outlets are GFI and circuit breaker is 15amps (I've seen some new houses installing 10amps circuit breakers). I have no choice but to use an extension cord as it won't reach otherwise, but will be using it once a week. So either use the outside outlet (charger is waterproof right?), or figure out a way to close the garage door all the way and rig up something to avoid crushing the cable...
  19. Odobo

    Odobo Active Member

    All these safety verbage is to cover their liability so when someone sue them they can say "I told you so"

    Also, not everyone knows how to deal with electricity. It's easier to take the safest route and just say don't do it instead of you can do it if you know what you are doing.

    Bottom line, people use extension cord for a lot other applications way before EV was a thing. Knowing what to do and how to use it properly is the key to protect yourself. If you don't know what you are dealing with ask a certified electrician and take your own risk.

    It is your house and your life that you will be dealing with.
  20. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    The manual does state that but we all know that’s because of the lazy stupidity of some who would just grap any light duty cord and burn down their house. Same thing for the recommendation to use a dedicated circuit. Honda didn’t want to get inundated with calls from the ignorant who plugged in to a circuit with so much existing draw on it that the 12 Amps rated draw of the charger would then exceed the 15 Amp breaker and possibly heat up enough to damage the charger or even cause a fire or at best continually stop charging.
    So for economic and legal reasons Honda has decided to cater to the least common denominator in society...the idiots among us who don’t read labels and don’t take the time to understand what they are doing

    However common sense informs one that you can use an extension cord if you properly size it to the circuit and use it in a safe manner. Here’s how to do it.

    The Honda charger is rated at a maximum of 12 Amps. US houses are wired with 15 Amp breakers with 14 gauge wire or 20 Amp with 12 gauge wire. Circuits and breakers should be derated by 20% for continuous use and so 80% of 15 Amps is 12 Amps, and 80% of 20 Amp breaker is 16 Amps the max draw for each. So All is fine until you put more items with more draw on the circuit and overload it’s carring capacity resulting in warm to hot wires and brekers that will be continually tripping. So again if the maimun draw on a multi use 15 Amp protected circuit never surpasses 12 Amps then you will be in code ans have no problems. If you choose not to use a dedicated line, then you must ensure all devices on that line draw 12 Amps or less at any given time (up to 15 Amps momentary). In this scenario, your Charger already is rated at the max, so no other devices may be run in its circuit while it is charging. (You could simultaneously run 4 more Amps with it on a 20 Amp circuit). You can see that since some user intervention is required that dedicated circuits are preferred since they reduce the possibility of inadvertent overloading.

    So now you’re made your circuit and it’s breaker safe, what about extension cords? Extension cords come in several ampacity sizes, length, and robustness.
    For the reasons stated above you should choose a quality 12 gauge cable that is the shortest length that will work in your application (for shorter runs, even a 16 g would work, but we’re only going to use 12 g). Choose the shortest length that reaches and look for the letters SJTW (S- fexible, J- for hard service , T- Thermopaltic rated for 300 v, W- for Weather approved. See previous posts for low cost examples. Some can be had wirh lighted ends so you can tell at a glance that powers getting to it.

    Now you’re ready to hook up a charger but you have to do it safely. Remember ext cords are not allowed to go through walls or be used in any permanent installation. They must also not be flexed back and forth repeatedly or pinched or abraded. And all connections must be kept dry and away from water. In the garage keep the brick and connections off the floor and your fine. Outside do the same and protect the connections from rain with a cover at both the outdoor receptacle and the connection between ext cord and charger. See pictures below for two ex. of the covers.

    Bottom line: an extension cord and non dedicated circuit can be used but then the responsibility of doing doing so correctly and safely falls on you. If you’re not comfortable with the exercise of your personal responsibility then just follow the manual and spend the money with your electrician.
    I charged with an extension cord outside for about a month unti my ChargePoint arrived (and I cleaned out the garage!).

    Here examplea of the covers
    Dicalimer: I’m not an electrician but I’ve worked with them and have a little common sense. Always be safe and follow your local codes with no shortcuts.
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2018
    Smitty74 and Johnhaydev like this.
  21. ManKo

    ManKo Member

    Your garage door opener has adjustments on it that allow you to set where it stops when it goes down (and where it stops when it goes up). Adjust this so that the door stops about an inch before it hits the concrete.
  22. Markh

    Markh New Member

    I bought the cover and it worked well for a few months, until it broke my garage door opener. It was an old one from the late 90s. I replaced it and discovered a much better solution. The garage door is now set to close about an inch above the ground which leaves room for the cable to sit underneath.
    insightman likes this.
  23. Agzand

    Agzand Active Member

    How about making a small indent in the rubber gasket for the cable? It is a cheap piece and you can replace it if later you don't need it.

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