rougeetnoir
Posts: 33
Joined: Mon Feb 01, 2021 1:57 pm

Ohio charging services

Would anyone have wise words on what charging services, charge point, Electrify America &c to sign up with in Ohio? Both of these have some so- so reviews nationally. Does Plugshare offer charging or only info about it? I also have a Tesla adaptor. Many thanks to all.
3pete
Posts: 207
Joined: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:03 pm

Re: Ohio charging services

I would highly recommend Plugshare because it should have all the locations from other networks and you can see which ones you intend to use. It also has pictures to pinpoint location, general idea of whether you'll actually be able to charge there or if there are other unusual things you might like to know (like if wasps built a nest in the charge handle receiver). EVGo did just buy the company behind Plugshare so time will tell if it keeps its "independence" (and usefulness) or not...

For specific networks you might find that it's beneficial to have an account with a bunch of them and then decide if you use any single network enough to pay for a subscription. Most will allow you to create an account with minimal information, and if you give them a fake name you don't have to worry as much about them getting hacked or selling your personal data. Unfortunately for using stations, the credit card reader is a somewhat common failure point on charge stations if they eve have them, so the app (or calling an 800 number) might be necessary to pay for activation sometimes.

In my Ohio experience, I've used: Chargepoint, Electrify America, EVGo, Flo and non-networked.

The only network that I'd feel comfortable relying on for an absolutely necessary charge stop is Electrify America. Because they do DC Fast Charging and because they have multiple chargers per location you are likely to find one that works. It's essentially the Tesla Supercharger approach with fewer geographic locations and higher prices.

Additional thoughts:
Chargepoint - In my experience, fine. I haven't used them a lot because they're not where I typically go. Prices can be set by the proprietor (I think) so they vary quite a bit, from free to 'expensive'.

Electrify America - Best one in my experience. Multiple stations (usually 5+) in thoughtful locations means at least one is usually working and they are unlikely to be blocked. DCFC means people aren't typically there for hours. Prices can be comparable to gas or higher but that's better than a tow home I suppose. I've frequently had to try multiple chargers before getting it to work successfully.

EVGo - Around here they have 1 DC fast charger per location, but their max output is 50kw so if someone is there, they could be there for 30+ minutes before you can even start to charge. On top of that, stations are frequently out of order, and their pricing is usually higher than gasoline.

Flo
- Newer company that seems to be building out from Cincinnati. They've partnered with Chargepoint so each app works with the other one's charge stations which is nice. Flo is based out of Quebec and they don't have a huge US presence yet, so the Cincinnati connection seems weird but I'll take it! Their website shows their US charge station count by city as follows:
Los Angeles 181
Cincinnati 140 ?!?!?
New York City 67
San Fransisco 13
Albany NY 12

Their charge stations seem to be in well thought-out locations and they have a few plugs per location. They're all L2 that I've seen and their prices are rather high for L2 speeds. On the other hand, they're expanding the most aggressively around here so maybe there's a reason for that.
rougeetnoir
Posts: 33
Joined: Mon Feb 01, 2021 1:57 pm

Re: Ohio charging services

Many thanks for all this most useful info.

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