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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sad way to start out with my bike. By accident I didn't take my keys with me from the dealer. So couldn't charge at home. So I pinged my sale guys and we planned to meetup. I was up early and excited and so I was like lets go figure out the charging.

This is Portland OR so any PDX users that know which DC chargers work please let me know. I started at the Portland General Electric Shell Recharge/Greenlots chargers near Fred Meyer around Highway 10 and Highway 26. There was a nice uber driver there getting his morning cheap charge. First charge credit card scanner didn't work so configured the app. Started communicating. Blink to user pause. Then went to precharge. But then exited to EVSE error. Tried the next unit. Then the guy came out and was leaving. Had me plug into the one he was using. Then used his card. Same. Called shell they rebooted the thing. Same. Called Livewire. Same.

I was like OK I will drive to Paradise HD do quick charge and come back. So of course charge point requires the app and the charger is clearly older tech but still DC fast so I proceed. Same problem horible UI on the charger. Get Chargepoint tech support on the call. Can barely hear them. No help. Give up. Get my key and go home. I almost just left the bike and go an Uber. Does public charging even work with this bike? Did I get a lemon that doesn't work on DC from the factory? WTF. Anyway it is charging in my garage now. I am kinda over it.
 

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From tens of thousands of miles of EV road trips, I have a bit of experience with CCS charging and have charged my LiveWire at DC public chargers. Here are a few tips to save yourself some headaches.

1. Download Plugshare. Think of it as Yelp for EV chargers. With Plugshare, you'll have a better idea of what to expect at a charging station, because you'll be able to read about recent experiences from other drivers. There are a lot of older charging stations and points that got knocked offline when the 3G networks were largely shutdown earlier this year and getting those stations converted to LTE is taking a while. When you use Plugshare, you can see if anyone had recent success at a particular location.

2. Download ABRP for route and charging planning. Used in conjunction with Plugshare, you'll save yourself a lot of grief and you'll feel a lot better having a plan. Plugshare has its own trip planner, but it's not as robust.

3. Point of Sale terminals at chargers are horrifically unreliable. You'll have much better luck with the network RFID cards. I actually keep a separate wallet of RFID cards for every EV charging network that I am likely to encounter. It's also wise to pre-load and register yourself with the various charging network apps. Some charging networks, like Electrify America and Volta, can only be activated through the app.

4. Networks matter
  • From my experience, Electrify America (VW Dieselgate investment) and EVGO (GM investment) are consistently the most reliable, because they're actively maintained and growing networks. Electrify America does extensive testing with all of the vehicles on the market and it shows.
  • ChargePoint has the largest number of stations, but many are owned by individual property owners that can set their own price and may/may not continue investing in updates/upgrades. From my experience, a lot of ChargePoint stations were knocked offline by the 3G sunset, including a number of Harley-Davidson units.
  • Volta and Shell stations are popping up everywhere. Volta is free and supported by advertising.
  • Flo is a Canadian charging network that you'll find at a lot of Nissan dealers in the States.
  • I have never successfully charged at a Blink charger in any EV, at any time.
  • If you're looking to carry RFID cards, I would carry EVGO, ChargePoint, Flo, and Shell at a minimum.

Good luck and have fun!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
From tens of thousands of miles of EV road trips, I have a bit of experience with CCS charging and have charged my LiveWire at DC public chargers. Here are a few tips to save yourself some headaches.

1. Download Plugshare. Think of it as Yelp for EV chargers. With Plugshare, you'll have a better idea of what to expect at a charging station, because you'll be able to read about recent experiences from other drivers. There are a lot of older charging stations and points that got knocked offline when the 3G networks were largely shutdown earlier this year and getting those stations converted to LTE is taking a while. When you use Plugshare, you can see if anyone had recent success at a particular location.

2. Download ABRP for route and charging planning. Used in conjunction with Plugshare, you'll save yourself a lot of grief and you'll feel a lot better having a plan. Plugshare has its own trip planner, but it's not as robust.

3. Point of Sale terminals at chargers are horrifically unreliable. You'll have much better luck with the network RFID cards. I actually keep a separate wallet of RFID cards for every EV charging network that I am likely to encounter. It's also wise to pre-load and register yourself with the various charging network apps. Some charging networks, like Electrify America and Volta, can only be activated through the app.

4. Networks matter
  • From my experience, Electrify America (VW Dieselgate investment) and EVGO (GM investment) are consistently the most reliable, because they're actively maintained and growing networks. Electrify America does extensive testing with all of the vehicles on the market and it shows.
  • ChargePoint has the largest number of stations, but many are owned by individual property owners that can set their own price and may/may not continue investing in updates/upgrades. From my experience, a lot of ChargePoint stations were knocked offline by the 3G sunset, including a number of Harley-Davidson units.
  • Volta and Shell stations are popping up everywhere. Volta is free and supported by advertising.
  • Flo is a Canadian charging network that you'll find at a lot of Nissan dealers in the States.
  • I have never successfully charged at a Blink charger in any EV, at any time.
  • If you're looking to carry RFID cards, I would carry EVGO, ChargePoint, Flo, and Shell at a minimum.

Good luck and have fun!
Wow. Thanks so much.
 

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My experiences are very much inline with what Detansinn said. Also, you get 2 free years of charging with Electrify America. You have to get a code from HD or Livewire to activate it and there are threads on the forum about it.

See this thread. It says you only get the free charging if bought between certain dates, but I bought mine well after ( November 2021) and was still able to get it.

So, in short, Electrify America and EVGO have been most reliable. I tend to avoid everything else. ABRP (a better route planner) is great to plan routes, but the app is horrible to use on a phone while riding. I use ABRP to plan then google maps while riding.
 

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My experiences are very much inline with what Detansinn said. Also, you get 2 free years of charging with Electrify America. You have to get a code from HD or Livewire to activate it and there are threads on the forum about it.

See this thread. It says you only get the free charging if bought between certain dates, but I bought mine well after ( November 2021) and was still able to get it.

So, in short, Electrify America and EVGO have been most reliable. I tend to avoid everything else. ABRP (a better route planner) is great to plan routes, but the app is horrible to use on a phone while riding. I use ABRP to plan then google maps while riding.
Yep.

One important clarification, the HD LiveWire folks get the Electrify America and Chargepoint deals. To my knowledge, the LiveWire branded bikes don’t qualify for those perks — part of the cost cutting.
 
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