Clipper Creek LCS-25 Charging Station
Well-established charging station manufacturer Clipper Creek has just unveiled what it claims is the smallest electric vehicle charging station currently available on the market.
Costing $995 and weighing in at 7 pounds, the Clipper Creek LCS-25 unit looks like the portable 110V level 1charging cable found in the 2011 Chevrolet Volt - but is a level 2 unit capable of providing more than twice the power through a wired 220V, 25A connection.
Unlike other charging stations on the market, Clipper Creek aren’t insisting they install the unit for you either. Instead, consumers can purchase the units directly from Clipper Creek and have their own electrician permanently wire the unit in.
In other words, there’s no site surveys, no pre-sales visits and no overly expensive installation costs. It’s up to the buyer to arrange installation themselves.
2011 Chevrolet Volt charging portEnlarge Photo
In fact, we’d expect a fair number of customers to throw caution to the wind and install the unit themselves from a spare electrical feed from the breaker box, neglecting to involve a qualified electrician at all.
While such a gung-ho approach may save you money, we’re duty-bound to tell you that modifying your home’s electrical circuits is both dangerous and in some cases, illegal. The smart choice is to leave your home wiring alone - and get a trusted electrician to do the work for you.
In this case however, there’s yet another option.
Due to its small size, the new Clipper Creek unit looks and feels very much like a portable charging station. But to comply with various building and electrical codes, Clipper Creek are selling the LCS-25 as a unit designed to be permanently wired into an electrical supply.
But much like the charging station Ford is planning to ship with its 2012 Focus Electric, the Clipper Creek Unit comes with a short ‘pigtail’ power connector, meaning it could theoretically be wired up on a suitable 220V plug similar to those which power domestic clothes driers.
2012 Ford Focus ElectricEnlarge Photo
What does this mean? Instead of a permanent connection, enterprising owners could have a truly portable 220V charging station capable of charging cars like the 2011 Nissan Leaf and 2011 Chevrolet Volt more than twice as quickly as the cables which shipped with their cars.
While Clipper Creek isn’t officially supporting such installations - and warns against ‘improper use’ in its product manual - we’re guessing it won’t be long before we see many adventurous electric car owners unplugging their charging station from the wall and putting it in the trunk, turning the hunt for a charging station into the hunt for an available 220V drier socket.
Which would you prefer? Let us know in the Comments below.