frictioncircle
Posts: 115
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2016 11:23 pm
Location: USA West Coast

Re: DCFS Level 3 charging not reliable

Sat Oct 26, 2019 11:05 pm

BTW, a rogue auto-correct may have changed your thread title.

The Level 3 charging technology in the i3 is usually referred to as DCFC (DC Fast Charging), SAE CCS (Society of Automotive Engineers Combined Charging System), or just CCS.

Just wanted to mention it as "DCFS" in the thread title may have prevented others from coming across this based on normal search terms!

:geek:

jadnashuanh
Posts: 5106
Joined: Thu May 22, 2014 2:07 pm
Location: Nashua, NH USA

Re: DCFS Level 3 charging not reliable

Sun Oct 27, 2019 9:30 pm

FWIW, the CCS charging protocol is more complex than that used with an EVSE. Two of the pins normally used for acv input get repurposed to be data lines. Throw in the fact that the CCS plug and cable is heavier, and you need all of the pins to be making proper contact, and that the latch may be slightly off, means that properly activating a CCS charge may be a bit more problematic than when using an EVSE. That's not saying that it shouldn't be seamless, it should, but it may not be. Throw in that there MIGHT be slight variations in the communications protocol, they may not play together well all of the time.

While my i3 has it, I've not found occasion to use a CCS unit, so have no idea if it would work or not. I've only used a couple of EVSEs outside of my own, so not sure if there are differences there, too. That protocol is much simpler than the CCS one as there's no digital data being exchanged, only analog signals.
Jim DeBruycker
2011 535i x-drive GT, 2014 i3 BEV
Soon (hopefully!) A 2021 X5 45e will replace the above

electronchaser
Posts: 79
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:14 pm

Re: DCFS Level 3 charging not reliable

Thu Nov 14, 2019 12:06 am

FWIW I've done a lot of DCFC lately, love it! other than the heavy cables, kinda odd to get it in , due to the port being slightly angled, and the CCS plug being a bit heavy towards the plug end with the weight of the cable pulling at a funky angle. But no problems at all with pin locking.

However one weird anomaly has been throwing up the red blinking light around the port, and shutting off the EVSE (session terminated). Don't know if its from the car or the EVSE. I heard the pin disengage but didn't pay attention if that happened pre or post termination.

on the plus side:
Am I trashing it?, absolutely, but with love, like every other BMW I've owned.
Rondel stands for something, and I fully utilize all the non neutered abilities its got.
Takeaway. This is an amazing piece of engineering. And I'm not impressed with 'stuff'

electronchaser
Posts: 79
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:14 pm

Re: DCFS Level 3 charging not reliable

Thu Nov 14, 2019 12:10 am

https://ibb.co/ZJgJk2f

https://ibb.co/NFH9SS9Image

Image

(This was at sub 40kW power at all times)
Am I trashing it?, absolutely, but with love, like every other BMW I've owned.
Rondel stands for something, and I fully utilize all the non neutered abilities its got.
Takeaway. This is an amazing piece of engineering. And I'm not impressed with 'stuff'

JackOakley
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2018 5:48 pm

Re: DCFC Level 3 charging not reliable

Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:31 pm

I have a 2016 i3 REX:
Same Issues as all the above posts with DCFC.

1) Electrify America: It takes me 4-6 attempts, the car usually locks the DCFC cable, you will need to wait about 3-5 minutes for the car to realize it's not charging and release the cable. I have call EA support - they are very nice, have rebooted the charges remotely for me and suggested I hold up on the cable handle to assure a firm seating of the charge plug.

2) Harley Davidson Charger - will not work, looks like it is going to work, but never starts the charging. i3 Issue. I think it has something to do with it being 25kW - possibly a limit set internally on the I3 for DCFC.

3) EVGO - usually 2-3 tries and it works - Just expensive compared to EA.

4) Home SIEMENS level-2 charger - when I enable a departure time and enable climate (heat) the preconditioning works, but when I enable the climate feature to warm the interior the SIEMENS charger fails and I get red lights on charger and i3 charge socket - If I reset the charger and plug in again it starts charging. Called Siemens, very helpful engineers. They said it's on the i3 implementation of the HAND-SHAKE protocol to connect a charger during the request for power as the heater is automatically turned on, they said they are partners with BMW, raised to their attention in 2015 and BMW refuses to make adjustments.

I love my i3, but their reluctance to not address charging issues is unacceptable. This is a new standard, should be as easy as LEVEL-2 charging and as easy as filling an ICE gas tank. I tried calling BMW customer support, no help. Spoke to my dealer - helpful to the respect that they openly shared they have no FIRMWARE updates from BMW for the charging system - They agreed an issue with the i3.

So like many of you - I stand and watch BOLTs, Hyundai, KIA and recently an AUDI eTRON plug into the Electrify AMERICA station near me and they just plug in and start charging - They get the entertainment of me struggling to get the i3 to release the charge cable with CONNECT FAILURE messages on the charger.

Not sure how we get BMW to provide the same attention to our i3s and keeping the up to date with the latest charging technology.

robthebold
Posts: 110
Joined: Sat May 11, 2019 5:09 pm

Re: DCFC Level 3 charging not reliable

Tue Nov 26, 2019 1:19 pm

2017 i3 Rex

I've found that the DC charger at the BMW dealer is pretty reliable, but the only other one I use (ChargeNow, free) only works when I'm alone -- no kids in the car. Don't know how it knows, but so far it's been a 100% accurate predictor.

RobustBob
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Jan 29, 2020 4:03 pm

Re: DCFC Level 3 charging not reliable

Mon Feb 24, 2020 1:27 pm

I’ve had a 2014 REX for a few months now and would have to agree that DCFC is completely unreliable.

electronchaser
Posts: 79
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:14 pm

Re: DCFC Level 3 charging not reliable

Mon Feb 24, 2020 3:06 pm

Might be more of an issue with older models. Since taking delivery, I've done over 5000miles of dcfc-ing, with a 98% success rate, and the one two errors I got were from the DCFC unit and not the vehicle.

Haven't been stranded once, and I discharge the battery a lot. I think if reliability was an issue, I would have needed to flatbed the car on countless occasions.
Am I trashing it?, absolutely, but with love, like every other BMW I've owned.
Rondel stands for something, and I fully utilize all the non neutered abilities its got.
Takeaway. This is an amazing piece of engineering. And I'm not impressed with 'stuff'

panamamike
Posts: 121
Joined: Sat Jan 25, 2020 10:21 am

Re: DCFS Level 3 charging not reliable

Mon Feb 24, 2020 5:48 pm

jadnashuanh wrote:
Sun Oct 27, 2019 9:30 pm
FWIW, the CCS charging protocol is more complex than that used with an EVSE. Two of the pins normally used for acv input get repurposed to be data lines. Throw in the fact that the CCS plug and cable is heavier, and you need all of the pins to be making proper contact, and that the latch may be slightly off, means that properly activating a CCS charge may be a bit more problematic than when using an EVSE. That's not saying that it shouldn't be seamless, it should, but it may not be. Throw in that there MIGHT be slight variations in the communications protocol, they may not play together well all of the time.

While my i3 has it, I've not found occasion to use a CCS unit, so have no idea if it would work or not. I've only used a couple of EVSEs outside of my own, so not sure if there are differences there, too. That protocol is much simpler than the CCS one as there's no digital data being exchanged, only analog signals.
If you haven't tried CCS, you will probably find a free charger at your local BMW dealer. My dealer has the 24Kwh variant of fast charger, just needed a chargepoint account that you can put on your phone for free. If you're not sure they have one, you could check with the chargepoint or plugshare app.

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