By on January 11, 2021

EVSplitvolt has answered two major drawbacks to electric vehicle (EV) ownership, slow charging and costly rewiring. Their Splitvolt Splitter Switch is a game-changer, rolling out this week at the virtual Consumer Electronics Show (CES).

EV

Splitvolt Inc. is one of those techie, geeky Silicon Valley startups you wouldn’t normally hear about. Daniel Liddle, the founder and CEO, put together a team to address the pain points that would definitely keep me from adopting any EV: Simple and inexpensive power access, and fast recharging.

What the Splitter Switch does that’s mind-boggling is to use your existing 240-volt dryer socket, a standard household NEMA 14-30 wall socket that you already have if you have an electric dryer. Plugging the Splitvolt SPS 02-032 into the wall socket, you now have one NEMA 14-30 for your dryer, and one NEMA 14-50 socket for use with your EV charger.

A new product category, an EV Splitter Switch, shares your existing 240-volt dryer socket to provide full 24-amp power on demand, to dry your clothes, recharge your EV charger, or the vehicle itself. According to the company, it will deliver power to charge your car seven times faster, bypassing the cost, complexity, and time required to have an electrician install a new power circuit. In some locations, this may entail having to get a permit, another of those EV ownership drawbacks.

Plug it in, and Splitvolt seamlessly switches power on demand between your dryer and your EV, without having to do so manually. It displays real-time power usage information on a color screen and includes an internal circuit breaker for additional power protection. Real-time voltage, current, temperature, kilowatt-hours (kWh), and status indicators are there for those of you who must know what’s going on with the Splitter Switch at all times. There’s also an integrated 25-amp circuit breaker with easy reset for additional protection. 

Splitvolt utilizes standard household NEMA 14-30 sockets and is compatible with common EVs from automakers including FCA, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Tesla, Volkswagen, and Volvo. Splitvolt is also compatible with third-party chargers sold in North America, such as Clipper Creek, Besen, and their own line of chargers, extension cables, and adapters. For this configuration, the charger must be set at the maximum safe-charging rate of 24 Amps.

The Switch monitors, displays, and transfers full 24-amp power-on-demand between the attached devices. The introductory price of $319 sounds like a real bargain, although at the time this was written, the product’s safety certifications were in process, and they have not received UL/CE approval yet.

[Images: Splitvolt]

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64 Comments on “Splitvolt Fast EV Charger Debuts at CES...”


  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    Where to begin…

    I installed my own charger in 2012 for a total cost of ~$800 at the time. It could be done today for under $500.

    My charger is on a double 40A breaker, with a maximum output of ~30 Amps. At 24 Amps, this Splitvolt is already slower. “Seven times faster” is with respect to charging on a 110V line, a mode which should be reserved for small plug-in hybrids, not BEVs.

    This device doesn’t help anyone who uses a gas dryer, and it also requires your EV to be pretty close to the dryer. Mine is 40 ft away.

    Also, time-sharing the circuit means you can’t count on a repeatable charge time for your EV, nor for drying your clothes. Also, wouldn’t disconnecting power from the dryer require it to be manually restarted?

    No UL/CE certs yet? Wait before buying.

    Honestly, this device has so many drawbacks that it’d be worth paying an electrician to do the job properly. With EVs still on the pricier side, it makes no sense to go cheap on the charger. This device could actually turn off a newbie EV driver to the entire experience, rather than enhancing it.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      “I installed my own charger in 2012 for a total cost of ~$800 at the time”

      What’s your profession?

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        Engineer (mechanical). The Schneider Electric charger was ~$750, then there was the cost of 25′ of 8 AWG wire, a double breaker, and some wire clamps.

        I won’t claim my installation meets code (it may need conduit), but it’s safe, and no different from the other heavy wiring in my house for an electric range, the former electric dryer (now gas), and new electric HW tank.

        I realize such a project is not for everyone, but it’s an evening of work for someone with modest skills. Just turn off the house main breaker first. :)

        • 0 avatar
          mcs

          “but it’s an evening of work for someone with modest skills.”

          I’d rather wire a charger than replace an exhaust on an ICE any day.

        • 0 avatar

          Hi, just wanted to add a comment that folks with your specialized background, whether it is as an engineer, electrician, or even technical handy-man, can certainly do their own wiring and save a lot of money. Products like these are intended for “normal” mainstream car buyers who are not comfortable dealing with higher voltage power in their home. It just gives them a simple, relatively inexpensive, plug-n-play way to get fast home charging.

          • 0 avatar
            ToolGuy

            Note that Splitvolt posted a point-by-point reply to SCE to AUX near the bottom of the page [because the multiple ‘reply’ buttons on TTAC are confusing].

    • 0 avatar
      Drew8MR

      Counterpoint: We rent and have a gas dryer, but there’s a dryer outlet as well. And that outlet is in the garage. I might not go this route for a Taycan, but it would be fine for a used Leaf or whatever.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        If you have a spare 240v outlet already then why not just get a conventional EV charger that plugs into it?

        • 0 avatar
          Drew8MR

          I have air on that line, but good point.

          • 0 avatar
            mcs

            I have a portable level 2 charger with a set of adapters. I had a NEMA 14-50 outlet installed and it was only about a 3 foot run to the panel.

            My first house had a dryer outlet in the garage. I probably would have just unplugged the dry and plugged in the L2.

          • 0 avatar
            NormSV650

            The 110v set at 12 amps in 11 hours on our 2018 CT6 plug-in. I can charge at work and only drive 12 miles returning to home. So charging overnight at 8 amps it is always ready to go in the morning.

      • 0 avatar

        Hi, it’s great that you have an available 240v socket in your garage. You could just plug a charger directly into it without a splitter switch. (Splitvolt.com sells 24amp portable EV chargers for only $299 shipped.)

        However, you *could* use that available socket with a Splitvolt Splitter Switch and use it to charge two EVs. We have a fair number of people who use if for this as well. Since you rent this place, you could just unplug and take it with you when you move–or on a trip.

        Good luck!

    • 0 avatar
      la834

      > Also, wouldn’t disconnecting power from the dryer require it to be manually restarted?

      Most North American electric dryers actually use both 240v/30a and 120v/15a power, with the latter used to power light bulbs, electronics, and the motor. 120v power uses only one hot wire/”leg” of the circuit, a neutral, and a ground, whereas 240v power uses both hot wires. Conceivably, this device could shut off one of the hot wires to the dryer when charging your car while leaving the other powered, allowing the dryer to stay powered up even as the EV gets three quarters of the available electricity from the dryer outlet. But Lord knows what would happen if you tried to start the dryer in this mode. I doubt such a device would get UL certification.

      Note that some smaller electric dryers, those that are about 24″ rather than 27″ wide, run on 240v/15a power with electricals also running on 240v not 120v. This is especially true of European brands like Bosch.

    • 0 avatar
      RHD

      This device isn’t really necessary. Just use a Dremel to remove the side bit of the lower prong on the plug. It will then fit perfectly into your dryer outlet.

    • 0 avatar
      Joey21

      if 120V gets a person enough miles to replenish what they consumed the day before then what’s the problem with 120V charging?

  • avatar
    golden2husky

    I don’t understand the “it’s so expensive to install a 240 volt charger” bit. If your dryer is in the garage and you could use this, it is an easy way to go but expensive. Adding a 30A 240 volt circuit is easy. If your electrical panel is in the garage and you have two stacked spaces available, you are looking at about an hour of work and well under $100 for #10 AWG wire, a 2P 30A breaker, and a receptacle and box. If your panel is in the basement and have a long distance to go you *might* have to up-size the wire to account for voltage drop. You could simply go up one wire size if the calculation is something you don’t want to bother with.

    This only becomes costly if you have, say, an detached garage without power or just a couple of circuits and you have to trench to the garage and bury conduit. The hardest part is the digging the trench to the appropriate depth.

    • 0 avatar
      Drew8MR

      Hard for an electrician I guess. I dig alot of trenches. Besides, I’m sure Home Depot has trenchers, then it’s just cleaning it out. Anyway, I’m sticking with my “good for renters” stance, although I’ve never considered an electric car, so I have no idea what’s actually involved equipment wise for charging.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      “Adding a 30A 240 volt circuit is easy.”
      youtu.be/7jYPp9w-0Uk

      “and you have two stacked spaces available… ”

      I don’t know what most of that means. I took a picture of my actual panel. Is that circled area “two stacked spaces available”? Right now it looks to have an unused 20A, and then some sort of “punch out” metal covered spot below it. Everything else is used.

      i.ibb.co/kywfjcB/Panel1.jpg

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        If that bottom 20a on the left is truly unused then it can be removed the twist out below it removed and a double pole breaker like those above it can be installed.

        If you were to find that 20a circuit breaker is actually used you aren’t out of luck. Split double or quad breakers are available. While this is not the one for your box it gives you an idea of what they look like. https://www.homedepot.com/p/Square-D-Homeline-2-20-Amp-Single-Pole-1-50-Amp-2-Pole-Quad-Tandem-Circuit-Breaker-HOMT2020250CP/202495838

        The inner two marked 50a are tied together for 240v use and the outer 20a are independent for two 120v circuits. There are some where the outer two are shipped with a tie bar so you have 2 240v circuits, but those tie bars are usually designed to be removed if you want 2 120v and 1 240v circuit.

        Note depending on the vehicle a 40a, 50a, or even 60a circuit would be preferred over a 30a circuit. You must set the service equipment to operate at 80% or less of the wire and thus breaker rating. That is because it is considered a continuous load, which is one that runs for 3hrs or more. Many Teslas and the Mach E can charge at 48a requiring a 60a circuit to charge the vehicle at their advertised charging times.

        The chart on this pages shows the different mph added with different supply circuit sized on the different Tesla models. https://www.tesla.com/support/home-charging-installation/wall-connector

        • 0 avatar

          Scoutdude,
          Your reply is a great, detailed description of the steps for installing a dedicated circuit. You obviously know your stuff, and I think this will be helpful for those people who have the inclination, comfort-level, and aptitude for dealing with 240v power.

          It also indirectly does a good job highlighting precisely why the Splitvolt Splitter Switch is so appealing to “main stream” car buyers.

          Most folks do not necessarily understand what any of this means, don’t have the time, or are uncomfortable doing home wiring.

          The splitter switch costs less than $300, and you just plug it in and have 21mph EV fast home charging in minutes.

          I think there is room for both here. If someone is able to install a 50amp circuit themselves and get crazy-fast charging, that’s terrific, too.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        I can’t see your picture, but yes, it sounds possible to add a double breaker to your panel.

        To do it, the unused 20A breaker and the knockout below it would be removed, and the resulting space is filled with a double breaker (a unit with a conjoined breaker handle that spans two breaker spots), probably 30-40A size for each leg.

        A caution: If your panel is nearly full, you may be nearing the overall capacity of the service to your house. I have had no problems with 150A service feeding a 2000 sq ft house, with the EV charger, electric range, electric HW tank, ancient central A/C, and the usual electric items like microwave and other sundries. My panel has only 5 single spots left in it. In 20 years’ time, I’ve probably added half the breakers in it.

        At this point, the only natural gas I use is for the forced air heat and dryer.

        Adding the electric HW tank this fall (a switch from gas) was 10x harder than installing the EV charger, thanks to the distance and the plumbing.

        My charger served my 12 Leaf from 2012-15, and the Ioniq EV from late 2018 to present. It once charged a Model S which visited us, but I wasn’t even home to see it. That car was a very tight fit in my 1967 garage.

        Edit: Scoutdude’s post is good. My Ioniq only has a 6.6 kW on-board charger and a small battery, but some EVs have 11 kW chargers and much higher in the future. If I upgrade my car, then I’ll probably need to upgrade my charger system.

      • 0 avatar
        ToolGuy

        ajla,

        I know nothing – keep that in mind. I am curious about two things in the picture of your panel:
        a) What are all those double-space breakers feeding?
        b) Why aren’t the (higher-amperage) doubles stacked at the top of the box [instead of down one side]?*

        *Some say this doesn’t matter and that I’m just being anal-retentive. (On the other hand, an electrical panel is not a bad place to be anal-retentive.)

        Step one for you (my uninformed opinion) would be to make sure you have enough capacity in that panel for the additional [large] breaker. What’s the rating on the main breaker at the top of the panel? [And is this your main panel or a sub-panel.]

        • 0 avatar
          ToolGuy

          “Capacity” being not the physical space, but sufficient ampacity (current carrying capacity) to handle the additional load. [Depending on what the other circuits are, this could be a larger or smaller problem; it could also be ‘managed’ by using the charge timer on your charger or vehicle.]

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          a) that’s oven, air handler, water heater, and dryer.
          b) no idea. The panel was installed before I moved here. It has all the relevant stickers on it and no inspector or electrician has brought up concerns.

          That’s a “subpanel”, the main breaker is outside and is 150A. I also have a separate 20A breaker outside for my well.

          Does it have capacity for an additional 40A or 50A breaker for an EV? No idea.

          I will say that this discussion seems like an important thing for the ICE ban future. Some people are focused on the overall grid but very few are talking about how many homes even have the panel capacity for level 2 BEV charging (especially multi vehicle households).

          • 0 avatar
            golden2husky

            ajla, you have what is called a main lug only (MLO) panel. From what you describe, you have the main disconnect outside, probably in conjunction with your meter pan. This is because the distance between the meter and the breaker panel itself exceeds the Code maximum distance for running a service entrance conductor (between the meter and the panel)without overcurrent protection. If your meter was on the outside wall and your panel is right below it in the basement, for example, the distance is short enough that the main breaker can be in the panel itself. This creates a key distinction in how you terminate the neutral and ground wires. Code requires tying the neutral and ground conductor together at the first point of disconnect – in your case the 150 amp breaker panel outside is your first point of disconnect. If you open your MLO panel you will (should) find the ground wires all together on a ground bar that is bonded to the panel enclosure. Your neutrals will be attached to the neutral bus bar AND the green bonding screw that normally ties the neutral bar to the enclosure will be removed. The purpose of all of that is to make sure that only fault current flows through the grounding, not neutral current. If somebody ignored all of that and tied all the grounds and neutrals together in the panel, it would still work but the neutral current would flow through both the neutral and the ground conductors between the panel and the outside disconnect. A clear code violation.

            By “stacked” I mean that you would install a double pole breaker. You have several in your photo. The service into that panel will have a red conductor and a black one. As you travel down the panel the bus available to the breakers alternates between the black wire and the red. This is how you get 240 volts – the black is 120 volts and the red is 120 volts but each “leg” is 180 degrees out of phase with the other. So using space 17 and 19 in your photo would work for a charger. If the bottom two spaces were open (19 and 20) and you used two single pole 30 amp breakers and connected the charger to that it would not work because you would not be picking up both legs – 19 and 20 are on the same main feed wire. So, no 240 volts.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            The NEC has a calculator to tell how many amps worth of breakers can be installed with a given main breaker size. It is calculated based on a percentage of the continuous loads and a different percentage of the intermittent loads. Note is something is considered mutually exclusive you use the higher one of the two. The common example would be baseboard heat and separate AC where most people won’t turn on both at the same time.

            You’d have to run the calcs but you are probably going to be pushing it for a 150a breaker. So you may need some of all of your equipment to be upgraded. That Sub could be rated for 200a, there should be a label inside that notes the rating. So if your panel is rated for 200a then the panel could be kept. Big breakers are typically not meant to be changed. The rating of the meter base is also a question, if it is separate from the main.

            Worst case your meter base/main breaker needs to be replaced and you’ll have to have the electric company pull your power and meter, get all of that replaced, get your OK to connect sticker from the inspector and then call the power company to reconnect the power and reinstall your meter. So 2 day minimum w/o power, but likely more.

            Of course you can safely get away with even more than is allowed under code because you can set the car to charge after a certain time and know that you can’t use the oven and dryer once the car starts to charge. But once it comes time to sell….

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            “So you may need some of all of your equipment to be upgraded.”

            “you’ll have to have the electric company pull your power and meter, get all of that replaced, get your OK to connect sticker from the inspector”

            Yea, there is an absolutely 0% chance that I’m going to do that. Even if the government is paying for it, that sounds like a big PITA. If my current equipment can’t handle it then that is a dealbreaker and I’ll stick with ICE until the gas stations disappear or the government forces me to give it up.
            But don’t say I didn’t try.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            This page has the calculator to determine the needed service panel size needed for your specific application. Kind of convoluted but that is code. https://www.bhg.com/home-improvement/electrical/how-to-check-your-homes-electrical-capacity/

            Note you don’t use the size of the breakers for the dedicated circuits, you use the actual wattage of the device connected to them. That is because many are overrated due to the continuous use rule. The typical water heater only draws about 19a but divide by .8 and you need a 24a circuit but 30a is the next standard wire and breaker size.

      • 0 avatar
        wolfwagen

        Perhaps if you dont know what that means, then perhaps its a job best left to a professional. Electrical work and inexperience is not a good combination.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          “Electrical work and inexperience is not a good combination.”

          “Adding a 30A 240 volt circuit is easy.”

          “it’s an evening of work for someone with modest skills.”

          Advice on installing your own EV charger certainly runs the gamut.
          I will say, at least as it relates to me, that I don’t know much about home electrical systems, but I do think I have “modest” mechanical skills.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            A lot of it is common sense, ie turn off the breaker before starting work. Not damaging your components, ie not dragging your wire across the errant nail or screw, drop kicking your breaker ect.

            Some of it is proper knowledge, ie using the right sized components, which google will be glad to help you with.

            Some of it is general mechancial ability, ie knowing how to drill a hole, pop out a knock out and tighten the screws tight enough but not being such a brute that you break things.

            Note this is something that does require a permit and not all jurisdictions allow the home owner to do the work themselves, but many do. So you’ll have an inspector out there before you flip the switch on that new breaker. All the inspectors I’ve dealt with have been very nice to work with and are happy to take a little extra care if they know you are a novice.

          • 0 avatar

            ajla,
            You’re not alone. Lots of people with good mechanical skills just don’t want to deal with power. It’s a specialization area that takes time, training and interest to do safely–unless you’re brought up in the trade or just personally interested.

            Mainstream car buyers that are considering getting an EV will not want to deal with all of this, either.

            Based on the demand we’ve seen, they are willing to spend $300 for something that immediately gives them fast charging…

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      Or when the panel isn’t in the garage but is instead in the house and in a room with a vaulted ceiling too. That it the problem I’m facing at one of the houses I own. The one I live in has a detached garage and it doesn’t look like the existing conduit is large enough to add to it or replace it with something to supply a 60a or 100a sub panel in the garage.

    • 0 avatar

      Hi, it’s a good question/point. It’s true that if you’re an engineer, electrician, or technical DIYer, then you can often save money by doing the home 240v wiring yourself. This product is for “regular folks” who are not comfortable doing their own wiring, or don’t want to deal with the permitting process. Also, paying an electrician to do it can cost them $500-800, depending upon where they live.

      So this is just a simple way to fast home charging (21mph) by simply plugging it in–something anyone can do.

      Hope that makes sense.

  • avatar
    peeryog

    Yep, I was eager to read about a real game changer and it just fell with a dull thump.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      This device would have enabled a few more people to have an EV a decade ago, but today there are much better solutions.

      It might be the equivalent of inventing a memory stick that combines USB and micro-SD on opposite ends of a chip. Universal, yes, but not optimal.

    • 0 avatar

      Hi, did you have a specific concern or question you wanted to ask about that is making you unenthusiastic? I would be happy to explain the function of the device, if that would help?

      The device is unique and innovative in that it intelligently switches full power between the EV and dryer without any interaction required by the user. Just plug in the car, plug in the dryer and you immediately have 21mph fast EV home charging.

      We have found that there are some electricians who are less than happy with the idea of something that no longer requires a rewiring job, but most progressive electricians (as well as those electricians and engineers on our team) see it as an opportunity to bring value to their customers, opening doors on other projects that they might be able to do for them…

      Would be happy to answer any specific questions that can help?

  • avatar
    Scoutdude

    So this doesn’t do any good for those that live in older houses where the dryer ground was bonded to neutral. This won’t plug into the 3 prong outlet.

    Around here washer and dryer in the garage is not very common, only done on some cheaper houses in a certain era, or when someone got sick of going to the laundry mat and put it in the garage because there was space for it.

    Lots of houses around here do have the washer and dryer in a mud room that you pass through between the garage and house. But now you’ve got to have the door propped open for the cord to pass through.

    However we are also seeing lots of houses with Laundry room on the second floor, so it is on the same floor as the bedrooms. It has become common in houses above a certain price point for last 10-15 years but my 1977 house has laundry on the bedroom floor. So this would require running it down the stairs before heading out the door.

    So yeah a very limited use case where this is a practical option, especially since many of those houses that do have the w/d in the garage also have the panel in their too.

    Thinking about the houses I own(ed) it really wouldn’t be practical in any of them.

    #1 Laundry in the kitchen (added after house was built w/o). Panel in the garage in the outside un-insulated un-drywalled wall.

    #2 Laundry in the bathroom in the middle of the house. So by the time you snake it out of the room, down the hall, across the dining room and out to the car you would be looking at 40′ between the dryer outlet and the garage. Panel in the un-insulated outside wall of the garage.

    #3 Laundry in the room off of the side door, but it is nearest the detached garage and parking area. I could throw it out the window and get to the car. Unfortunately the detached garage is only served by a 20a circuit so I’m going to have to be trenching and install a sub panel.

    #4 Second floor laundry so running down a hall, down the stairs and out the door to the garage. Unfortunately this house has a panel in the office that has a vaulted ceiling so drywall repair is going to be part of it.

    #5 Laundry in the old side porch which does have a slider to the deck next to the parking but the panel is on the outside of the house just around the corner. So this one could sort of work if you put a stick in the slider so it can only open 1″, so people can’ just walk in and then you stuff the rest of the gap with insulation/tape it up to keep the weather at bay.

    #6 Dryer in the old side porch on the opposite side of the house with the detached garage and parking area. Panel on the outside of the house near the garage and driveway.

    • 0 avatar

      Hi Scoutdude,
      Thanks for the additional questions, others may wonder the same things…

      We are not trying to be all things for all possible applications. Focused on delivering a simple, safe product that intelligently shares an existing dryer socket to give people fast home EV charging without home rewiring.

      To clarify / answer your specific questions:

      * The product *is* designed to work in both older and new homes. There are versions of the product that support the older 3-wire NEMA 10-30 connectors as well as versions that support the 4-wire NEMA 14-30 wall sockets and dryer plugs.

      * Actually, dryer are extremely common in various states across the US. There are some interesting reports form the dryer industry that spell it out nicely, but we have seen this most commonly and highest demand in CA, FL, MA, OR, WA, AZ in the US (although sell in many other states well as well), but includes Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico.

      * Regarding power location, it is true that depending upon your house configuration, you may not have reasonable access to power. That said, our studies and customers have shown that a *lot* of folks do.

      There is no question that its easiest for those many folks who have s 240v socket in garage, carport, or other such location.

      However, you’d be surprised at how many customers with various and creative ways to use their splitter switch and a 240v extension cable up through a 3″ hole in floor in basement, out along side a dryer vent, or even using windows adapters.

      Obviously all that depends upon someone’s situation and aesthetic, but apparently in many cases, $300 for a splitter switch and a 240v extension cable is preferred to spending $600-800+ for a dedicated circuit…

      Obviously you know a whole lot about power, so there are likely many other folks who will benefit from the dialog here. I hope that this added clarification/details about the product is helpful in some way.

      Thanks

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        No questions here.

        Western WA is where I am from and RE is my business so I can say with certainty that dryers in the garage are not common in W. Wa. If one out of 50 of the houses I’ve shown had it I would be surprised. Those houses will have their panel in an outside wall of the garage with no insulation or drywall, at least when built, because they were cheap houses. The attached garage is far and away the most common location in W. WA, at least in houses with attached garages.

        I have had a number of clients over the years that either had and EV when going house hunting, or were planning on getting one in the near future. As a result location of the panel and general ease of installing equipment is often one of the items on the buyers must have list. Thankfully the outside garage wall is far and away the most popular location for a panel in my area in houses built since the 1950’s.

        That said, I’m sure you have a lot of customers in W. Wa since the EV adoption rate is high as is the use of Amazon, since they are the “local” company. The problem with that is this.

        “However, you’d be surprised at how many customers with various and creative ways to use their splitter switch and a 240v extension cable up through a 3″ hole in floor in basement, out along side a dryer vent, or even using windows adapters.”

        No I would not be surprised at the unsafe way people do things, I’ve seen way too much of it. Running an extension CORD through a 3″ hole in the floor does not meet NEC rules. You can not run a cord through a bulkhead (wall, cabinet, floor, ceiling, deck). If cable is run between floors then proper fire proofing of the area of penetration must be done to meet current code.

  • avatar
    probert

    I’m a renter with a Niro Ev – When the battery gets low I go to a charger, plug in and watch a netflix for about 45 minutes, and I’m good for the next 240 miles. Not a big deal, but I’m not a high powered executive type LOL.

    As for this device – I don’t get it. Plug the charger in the 220 circuit – not sure how this helps. Maybe a minor convenience.

    • 0 avatar

      Hi probert,
      Thanks for your question.

      If using superchargers works fine for you, then that’s great; no reason to change.

      That said, most folks find that home charging to be more convenient (wake up with full charge every day), is less expensive (time of day charging at home at night is much cheaper), and does not have the same negative impact that ultra-high DC charging stations can if they are used regularly.

      This product is really targeted for mainstream users with the above considerations in mind.

      Hope that helps.

  • avatar
    ToolGuy

    For the record:

    There are different plug configurations available (including 3-prong):
    https://www.splitvolt.com/shop/

    This device turns the “EV” outlet off when there is sufficient current running through the “Dryer” outlet – that is all. (Your electric dryer operation will be affected none, if you plug the dryer into the “Dryer” outlet.) [See the “Troubleshooting” page, since you don’t believe me. :-) ]
    https://www.splitvolt.com/wp-content/uploads/Splitvolt-Splitter-Switch_User-Guide_14_final.pdf

    This product is not going to be useful for all people on the planet; but there are people who would benefit from its use, and for them the ~$319 will be roughly equivalent to “peanuts” in the context of the overall EV decision. For example, if my dryer were in the garage and I parked in the garage (common situation for some people), I would not be comfortable with some family members plugging in and unplugging 240V plugs on a daily basis [big scary plug with lots of potential contact points and not exactly designed for ‘regular’ plugging and unplugging, plus we are in a garage which can be as bad as a bathroom/kitchen for shock hazards], but I would be comfortable with them using this device [there are very different safety interlocks on the ‘vehicle’ side of the charger]. (Let’s further say for example that I rent this place and the landlord doesn’t want me messing with the wiring; plus I get to take the Splitvolt with me when I move.)

    Charging an EV at 120V is *painfully* slow; 240V is much much better. This device will make the process easier (and significantly safer) for some people.

    Running circuits *can be* relatively straightforward, but there are multiple potential (pun) pitfalls which can result in death or a house fire or death in a house fire. [You would also want to check for voltage drop which might not do your EV any favors.]

    240V circuits are not the place to learn, and an EV charger in particular pulls large amounts of current for a long time, which will expose any weakness in your home’s wiring. [Use your Flir infrared camera to take a look at your panel and the circuit wires 2-3 hours into a charging cycle if you don’t believe me. (You don’t have a Flir? “C’mon, man!” – J.R. Biden, Jr.)]

    [Note: I say “120” because my house is usually right at 122V. Residential voltage is higher than it used to be; ask your favorite ex-lineworker about the reasons.]

    • 0 avatar

      ToolGuy,
      Thanks, we appreciate your comments and insights.

      Our team is working very hard to provide a useful, reasonably priced product that is helpful to as many people as possible.

      You’re right that it’s not for all situations, but we think it’s a good starting point and are working on other pieces that will help for even more environments in the future, as well…

  • avatar
    Imagefont

    So, it’s an extension cord with two different sockets, one of which is additionally protected by a redundant circuit breaker. Hopefully it’s a Listed breaker and not just a supplementary device. And since it plugs in it’s not covered by article 90 of the NEC and not a permanent part of your homes wiring. And UL (and CSA) are testing agencies that evaluate and “List” products, “CE” is not a testing agency, nor is it required in North America.
    It’s a power strip with two outlets. That doesn’t make it a “game changer”.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      @ImageFront: While I wouldn’t call it a gamechanger myself, it is more than just an extension cord with two outlets. It does intelligently switch between dryer and EV depending on demand so you’re not plugging and unplugging, then forgetting to plug the EV in after using the dryer. Or even letting the dryer run, then it switching back to EV when it’s done. In the article it also mentions that they’ve submitted it for safety certification/approval.

    • 0 avatar

      Hi Imagefont,
      Thanks for your question–others may wonder the same thing.

      The splitter switch is much more than a power strip with two sockets. Although easy to use, it is actually unique and has a relatively sophisticated design by our engineers and electricians.

      Specifically, it has multiple sensors and heavy duty power relays to automatically switch full power between the dryer and EV charger—but not run them simultaneously or risk overload.

      Another unique element is the internal circuit breaker for added overheat and overcurrent protection that is set well within the threshold of your existing 30amp home wiring and sub panel breakers. This means that although it can charge at the fastest NEC-safe charging rates, it will never overload or push the safety tolerances.

      Beyond those, it also has a real time power display so you can see exactly what the voltage, amperage, accumulated KWH and so forth is. Besides being informative, it is an important safety factor.

      The unit is plug-and-play, and uses standard 240v NEMA plugs and sockets, so anyone can just plug it in and no need to do any installation or turn off breaker power.

      I hope that this added information helps.

  • avatar
    JMII

    For an EV to work for me I need an outside outlet. My garage, which has an attached laundry room, is currently occupied with my boat. I believe this basic problem of “where to plug it in” is the biggest challenge to individual EV ownership. My wife would love an EV as her next vehicle… we just gotta figure how to make the plug situation acceptable and safe!

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      @JMII: You could go for an outdoor NEMA 14-50 RV box. THey work great and I’ve used them before. EV charging is safe outdoors because they go though a diagnostic procedure before turning on the high voltage. There are also level 2 chargers that are outdoor rated. If you live where it snows, I’d suggest finding a way to cover the port and cord while charging. Not necessarily for safety reasons, but to keep the charge port area clean so that the door closes easily.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      There is home service equipment that is rated for outdoor use. The easiest thing to do is mount it on the wall next to the garage door. The units require a low voltage handshake with the car to energize the high voltage conductors. As soon as you depress the latch button on the connector it interrupts the signal which immediately shuts off the high voltage. So the connector can lay in a puddle of water w/o the risk of shock.

    • 0 avatar
      ToolGuy

      JMII,

      For outdoor charging, I would strongly recommend that you go with a wall-mounted setup like Scoutdude described. You want it to look like a regular charging station when you are done, not a glorified extension cord. For example, something more like #3 here and less like #5 [just talking form factor, not making product recommendations]:
      https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/products/best-home-ev-chargers/

      You want all the scary sparky bits sealed inside electrical enclosures far away from any bare hands, so that your teenager or the visitor picks up the nice consumer-rated insulated charging connector and plugs it into the EV, just the way they would down at the mall.

      We parked our EV’s outside and charged them outside and never had any issues. I eventually installed a super-long cable on my charger so that we could charge multiple EV’s in the driveway (one at a time of course) without shifting cars around.

      [My EV charger (an early Blink model) is installed on the outside wall of my detached garage. It was professionally installed (by a dedicated EV team working in a state-sponsored early adopter program at the time) and has a small disconnect box mounted next to it. (I did perform the “lobotomy” on my particular charger, but this shouldn’t be an issue for the newer units.) No EV’s currently and I have the breaker to the charger turned off.]

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        The outdoor RV box NEMA 14-50 outlets combined with a portable charger are a good option. Especially if you’re going to do camping. The portable can have a wall mount so it’s like a permanent charger until you want to take it on the road. I don’t know what’s on the market now, but my unit was an early prototype of the EnelX EVSE. It worked well for me since my furthest work location had outdoor NEMA 14-50 outlets that I could take advantage of. Eventually, they added their own chargers and I didn’t need to bring it along. It was designed to be submerged, so it was safe.

        For the next car, if I do get a Tesla, I’ll probably get their “Corded Mobile Connector” which is an upgraded version of the mobile connector that comes with the car capable of 40a when plugged into a NEMA 14-50 and includes a 5-15 adapter. I’d add to that a CCS to Tesla adapter.

        But, there’s no problem with the “glorified” extension cord. That’s what comes with the car and it can be upgraded to something capable of more than the standard 1.3 kW. If anything goes wrong, they are good at shutting down and are much safer than a conventional 120v extension cord because of the safety features. In fact, these aren’t actually chargers but are extension cords with logic inside to talk with the car and source circuit to make sure everything is okay before turning on the power.

        • 0 avatar
          ToolGuy

          @mcs,

          My concern is not with the cord, it is with the outlet and the prongs. The outlet always has power, and the prongs are always conductive (neither of these are controlled by the logic in the downstream cord). It is one thing to plug in a NEMA 14-50 in a dry garage, it is another thing to count on day-in day-out use outdoors in snow and rain and puddles and wet boots and bare feet with ‘untrained’ users and Murphy and pacemakers and fingers in the wrong spot at the wrong time.

          Given the choice, for a long-term “I’m going to charge my EV outdoors in the driveway” installation, I would go with ‘permanent’ wall-mount over regularly connecting and disconnecting a NEMA 14-50.

          [Take a walk with me through my neighborhood and we can examine some NEMA 14-50 freestanding outdoor installations for RV’s. They start out fine, but time and entropy don’t do them any favors.]

  • avatar
    BobinPgh

    Oh, if all this is such a problem, can’t you just dry clothes on a clothesline?

  • avatar
    la834

    Despite having a NEMA 14-50 outlet on it, this device will markedly increase charging time since a North American electric dryer outlet is only 30A, not 50A.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      Some cars max out at 7.2kW anyway([email protected]), so the 50 amp wouldn’t matter. Even at 7 kW, you’d charge a 60kW battery from empty in less than 9 hours anyway. Usually, you’re only putting a fraction of the battery’s capacity into the battery anyway. With a normal commute, you’d probably see your charge done in less than 3 hours on a dryer outlet. My OBC is limited to 7kW and the car is usually charged in less than 3 hours. Without a commute, The charges are probably less than 30 minutes.

      • 0 avatar
        Joey21

        Depends on how many miles you consume in a day. I borrowed a Leaf Plus last summer and I was able to get all of my miles plus a few more overnight on 120V with the supplied EVSE. Plus, consider only charging to 80% for a battery that ages the slowest.

  • avatar

    My neighbor has an eGolf. He spent $800 to have a box wired by a pro, out to his driveway (weatherproof, there isn’t a garage). If you own a home it’s do-able, but not DIY for most people. If you rent or park in a public/private multiple garage, it’s not electric time yet.

  • avatar

    Hi, we are sorry that you feel this way, but we and the many, many customers who have purchased this product on Amazon.com, our website, or even from Indiegogo feel differently–and give it very high ratings.

    To answer your question, a good place to start would be reading a little bit more about the product. Accurate facts will help with understanding the product, and tell a very different story from the narrative in this comment.

    It is a new concept, so it makes sense that you (and likely others) will have questions, or make assumptions about how it works. Hopefully this note will help clarify this confusion, as I’ll hit on each point.

    FIRST: This product is designed to intelligently share an existing 30amp dryer circuit and provide the fastest NEC-safe EV charging allowable–which is 24amps on a standard 30amp circuit. This is 7x faster than using the standard 125v wall socket with the trickle charger provided with most vehicles.

    The POINT is to avoid the $800 (you already spent) to install a dedicated charging circuit, by simply plugging-in the Splitvolt Splitter Switch and you immediately get 21mph charging!

    Your note states a number of specific concerns with the product that I’ll answer in order:

    1) You spent $800 on your installation in 2012, and in general, labor rates have gone up from there not down. Current quotes in SF Bay Area are still over $850 today. With a Splitter Switch you would have saved a net of $500 and not had to deal with any rewiring, nor permitting delays.

    Today, even in parts of the country where it costs below $500, you still are saving the $200 and get to use it immediately, and can take it with you when you move, or on trips…

    2) Even for those folks with a GAS dryer, many models still use the 240v interface to run the electronics, so they would get all the normal benefit described above.

    But you are correct that if someone has an unused 240v socket that is available for charging, then they do not need a splitter switch. UNLESS they wish to use it to charge TWO vehicles on that one socket. (It works well for this.)

    3) EV immediate proximity to the dryer is nice and convenient, but is not required. Many of our customers across the US use a standard 240v extension cable so that they have the flexibility to position the charger wherever it is most convenient. Splitvolt.com sells 16ft and 26ft 240v extension cables that when used with the Splitvolt portable EV chargers (16ft) can easily reach vehicles 40ft+ away, inside or outside a garage.

    4) The “time-sharing” question also seems a little confused. To clarify, the device switches full power from/to the EV charger based on giving priority to the dryer. So any time someone runs a load of laundry, the splitter switch will pause charging on the EV until the dryer cycle is done. So this means that except for the 1-2 hours per day that you are running your dryer (assuming you do a *lot* of laundry), the remaining 22 hours your vehicle is charging at 21mph. That is *plenty* fast for even longest-range EVs.

    5) The dryer does not need to be restarted in any way. Just run your dryer the same as you always do without thinking about whether or not the car is charging. It’s totally seamless.

    6) Safety certifications are already in place for all the charger, cables, adapter products we offer, and are in process for this unit. Safety is our top priority, so this not only goes into the product design and component quality, but we also included an extra internal circuit breaker set at fastest NEC safe charging rates, but below the safety tolerances of your home wiring and breaker panel. This ensures you will not overload your wiring, nor even risk popping your home sub panel breaker. It also provides a real-time display of power usage so you can see that everything is operating normally.

    7) Regarding your comment about electricians, unfortunately we have found that there are still many out there who will try to scare and price-gouge new EV owners when it comes to installing dedicated circuits. This is one of the biggest impediments to mainstream EV adoption, and is precisely why we are here–and why we are seeing tremendous demand and satisfied customers across North America. (Anyone can do it.)

    I hope that this helps you, and others who may have questions about how this new innovative product works. Happy to answer any more questions that come up.

    Good luck!

    • 0 avatar
      ToolGuy

      @Splitvolt,

      Thank you for your comments and additional clarification.

      –> “charge TWO vehicles on that one socket”
      This is potentially very useful (automatic sequential charging of two vehicles). [Vehicle plugged into the left (‘Dryer’) outlet on the Splitvolt gets charged first. (Plug Aunt May’s EV into that outlet, since she’s leaving after dinner; our commuter car will charge after that and we won’t have to remember to plug it in later.)]

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        There is equipment out there that can charge two cars, unfortunately it is just set up to charge both at a lower rate, if two are drawing current, not charge A then B. There are also other units that can network with each other and be set up to share a common circuit.

        • 0 avatar
          mcs

          I’ve used dual-ported equipment that can charge at 7.2kW (240V AC @ 30A) simultaneously. A ChargePoint CT4000 series will do it. You just need two 30a inputs. I’ve encountered the type that splits the power. You usually discover that when you get a message on your phone that your charge rate just cut in half. It would happen to me on a certain 5kW charger that would drop to 2.5kW when someone else plugged in.

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