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What To Do When Owners Leave Their Nissan Leaf Plugged In and Not Charging

What do you do with people who leave their Nissan Leaf or another EV plugged in to a charger and not charging an hour or more after their car is done? "I am tempted to leave a note telling them how long it takes for their car to charge," writes one EV owner. Should you do that?


I think it would be helpful to leave not on for the owner of that vehicle. But please leave it in a kind, loving and constructive spirit. This will help to avoid any road rage episodes.

You can write something like this. "Your Nissan Leaf is done. Please, let others have fun."

You note has to be a gentle reminder. This about a scenario that this may be a new EV owner and may not be used to or have the habit of doing it right. "A new EV driver may not be aware of how much time is needed to charge. What should you do if there is an opportunity to park next to the "offender?" Should you unplug the EV or PHEV to plug in your own EV? I have read that is not good EV charging etiquette, but what if you really need the charge?" writes and asks Marc Fontana in the same group. The good news is that the electric vehicle charging etiquette starts to take shape.

When You Charge Leave Your Number

"We look for signs that the offending vehicle is fully charged," writes Laura James on SF Bay Area Nissan LEAF Owners group on Facebook. "If so, we see if it is unlocked then remove and charge our car while we wait there with it. I no longer lock the charger in, except when trickle charging at someone's home. I also got a sign that allows me to write my phone number on it and indicates that the person should call me if I am blocking anything and they need me to move. I got this for parking but it works for charging too. I never take the charger from someone who is actively charging. That is not cool. By the way how do you tell if Tesla's are done? The Beach Hut free chargers often have a Tesla or 2 on them. Not to mention how often we find hybrids, which are hard to tell if they are done as well."

You can also use use the setting "lock charger until full." If you don't know where that setting is on Nissan Leaf, watch this video prepared by Nissan, showing how to work with the Charge Connector Lock Switch.

Use Apps To Be Notified of Charging Status

Carvings App for Nissan Leaf and ChargePoint App can notify you of your charging status when your Leaf is charging.Set them up in your phone, it will notify you when the charging rate drops, implying full. You can also check that one screen in the display that estimates charge time and set an alarm to head back to your car around then.

Have Pricing If it's a Paid Charger

In conclusion Mike Thompson from the same group has an advice. "Have pricing on the station to drive driver behavior, not tow trucks. You can set the price really low, below costs if that;s your goal. I don't know if you're referring to a free or paid station. Free stations or paid stations without a time component are free to be abused indefinitely. Revenue from the abuse can be used to fund the installation of more chargers, so it approaches some level of sustainability. I've got a DC Fast charger I need to get the pricing changed on. without a time component, there's this person who regularly leaves his car plugged into and blocking the charger for 3 hours after finishing charging. The time component also addresses issues with people sitting on the fast charger, charging at 6kW or less to go from 95% to 100%."

What do you do when confronted with a similar situation? Here is a a brilliant and simple idea to improve charging station efficiency for electric car drivers.