Occasional lurker who has owned a 2011 Peugeot Ion for a year now, and thought I would pass on a tip/warning for those driving an Ion and (presumably) C-Zero or i-Miev in the UK or EU...
In the extreme snow conditions we had in the UK a few weeks ago I plugged my Ion in to charge after getting home and found that it would not charge... As I'd driven through some snow drifts that were deeper than the cars ground clearance I initially feared I might have damaged some HV related cables but it turned out this was not the case.
Normally when plugging in to a Level 2 charge point the red charge light on the dashboard will flash for about 3 seconds then go solid when charging commences. In this case it would flash for 3 seconds then the charging would abort along with the clunk of the wall mounted Rolec EVSE shutting off.
To rule out the wall mounted charger I tried the 3 pin granny charger with the same result. Hmm...
With no other clues I plugged in my Lexia 3 to check for fault codes and it came up with "Fault on the power factor correction module output voltage" from the OBC ECU. Aha!
I checked the mains voltage at the house and found it was 248 volts. This is considerably higher than the 233-238 volts we normally have at the house and I think 242 volts is the highest I've seen before.
To see if this was the problem I tried switching on the electric shower to pull the supply voltage in the house down a bit - which pulled it down to 243 volts. The car now started charging successfully. Phew!
I experimented a bit more with various loads in the house like oven, kettle etc and established the threshold where the car becomes unwilling to charge - 246 volts and below it is OK, 247 volts and above it refuses to charge and sets the above fault code...
The problem with this is that the mains voltage specification in the UK (post EU harmonisation) is 230 volts +10%/-6%, which means the acceptable voltage range here in the UK is 216 volts to 253 volts - so the 247 volts that is causing the car to refuse to charge is well within the allowed voltage range in the UK!
In fact the average supply voltage in the UK is 242 volts - only 5 volts lower than the point where the car will refuse to charge.
Has anyone else experienced this issue before ? The mains voltage at my house was only abnormally high for one day and is back to "normal" now, however it is worrying that the car cannot charge at 247 volts or higher when UK mains voltage can legitimately be up to 253 volts..
It may explain some unexpected charging failures that have been reported using public Level 2 charge points - as it likely that at least SOME of the public charge points in the UK have >246 volts at certain times of the day. I also confirmed that if the voltage rises above 246 volts during an already active charging session it will be aborted.
So if the car was left charging over night and the voltage happened to climb during the night past this threshold the charge would abort part way through without warning, leaving the owner to discover an incompletely charged car in the morning with no clues as to why it stopped unless they had the ability to check for fault codes as I do.
Does anyone know if the on board charger in these cars is a "world" charger ? Japan uses 90-110 volt AC and yet as far as I know imported i-Miev's will work in the UK so I am assuming the on board charger can work all the way from 90 volts to 246 volts ? If so why couldn't they have made it to work to 253 volts, and how did the car get type approval for use in the UK if it can't cope with the full range of AC voltages ?