Is this thing safe to use? - Hyundai Ioniq Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 27-12-18, 10:53 PM Thread Starter
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Is this thing safe to use?

I would assume that you need two outlets on different circuits?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 28-12-18, 12:34 PM
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I would be cautious around anything like this, both from protecting your vehicle and protecting your home

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 28-12-18, 11:14 PM
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Unless you are a qualified electrician yourself, otherwise have a constant 10A drawn on non-dedicated circuit IS NOT a good idea, this device is designed to draw 2 x 10A over 2 different phase of the electricity supply.

Furthermore, better to check whether your home wiring is the older aluminium wire or modern copper wire. Prolonged 10A over aluminium line is really an accident waiting to happen.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 29-12-18, 12:14 AM
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Holy cow, NO! I see a number of problems with this device. The main ones being:

1 - It claims to provide 240v 20 amp service. That means it needs to draw 20 amps from each of two 120 v plugs. That's 40 amps of power at 120v to produce 20 amps of 240v power. If you plug it into two outlets that are on the same circuit breaker, you are going to just pop that breaker. You are in the USA which means you likely do not have a 120v 40 amp circuit in your garage. I don't even know if such a thing exists.

2 - That means the two plugs must be on separate circuits in your garage. How many garages have two different circuits in them, nevermind two 20 amp circuits that have NOTHING else on them. If there are other draws, that will cause each to pop when you pull 20 amps from them on a 20 amp breaker. IF you even have 20 amp circuits to begin with.

3 - 20 amp breakers are not meant to have 20 amps of continuous power sucked through them. Gosh knows what would happen if they were to not pop, would they or the wiring start to heat up. Not what you want in your walls.

4 - It claims to produce 240v 20 amp SINGLE PHASE. That means both those circuits had better be on the same phase in your house. Do you know if both those circuits are on the same phase? What happens if you plug it into two different phases (I have no idea how your house is wired).

5 - I know nothing about the electrical requirements of a level 2 charger that this thing claims to mimic. Does it expect 240v 2 phase power? If so, what happens with single phase power going to your car's charging circuit.

Granted my electrical engineering degree is now 35 years old and my memory of AC power is long since rusty, but the bits I remember says this is a really bad idea. Someone is taking some serious liability selling a product such as this from what I can tell.

Also notice the Note further down on the web page "Note: User assumes all responsibility on use. It is the users responsibility to check the inbound voltage,electrical joiner box outbound voltage, and total amp draw to verify these are not going to be overloaded. The user agrees to test the amp draw of any appliance or machine that they plug into these converters to ensure they are not being overloaded. Meters are cheap and mistakes are expensive. You can purchase a meter at
User agrees to hold Steam Brite, its employees, and agents harmless in the event of any use of said use of converter. The user agrees to not hold SteamBrite and all employee against any problems that arise out of the use of said converters/ inverters. Remember, just because it plugs in does not mean it is OK to use!
" Notice that last sentence. Do you want to take this on?

I'd use that $282 towards a proper level 2 charger installation in your garage, not this device.

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Last edited by mtsarpilot; 29-12-18 at 12:25 AM.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 19-05-19, 05:01 PM
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Disclaimer - this applies to US wiring standards.

A 230v outlet is basically two opposite phase 115 circuits, each with its own circuit breaker, brought to opposite sides of the outlet. In essence, that's what this device appears to be doing.


In a properly wired 230v circuit, the two circuit breakers are mechanically linked so that if one trips, it breaks the other circuit. If you open a circuit breaker box and see some of the switches connected with bars, those are the 230v pairs. This is critical as too high of a load on one side, needs to shut the other side down.

I do electrical control work, but am not an electrician so I'm not as intimate with the National Electric Code, but from my passing knowledge of it this concept is not compliant, minimally for the unlinked breakers.

If, as noted previously, your garage has only one 115v circuit (which is common) this won't be able to work. If you plug both cords into the same circuit, you'll have both sides of the outlet on the same circuit's hot - there will be no electrical potential between them and thus no power.

Typical residential, non-dedicated outlets are on 15 amp circuits, so if you try to pull 20amps, either at 115 or as a single leg of a 230v outlet, you're going to pop the breaker or fuse (assuming they work correctly, preventing an overload and potential fire).

This device does not have any markings indicating that it has been rated by Underwriter's Laboratories (UL). That should be telling you something. Don't be fooled by UL ratings on the cords - read the labels - those are extension cords that someone hacked the other ends off to build this device from available electrical parts - this is not a factory built and tested product. The enclosure should have UL markings if this was an approved device, it does not.

If you want to pull 230v safely, and still be protected by your homeowner's insurance, you need to do it from a 230v outlet.

Is your distribution breaker panel in your garage? They often are, and if so, especially if its sides are exposed (not flush in a wall) that makes installing a new circuit a quick and simple task. Take a look in the panel - are their two blanks on the same side, with room for two new breakers? If so, a new 230 circuit can be installed without needing an auxiliary fuse box.
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Last edited by billmi; 19-05-19 at 05:13 PM.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 20-05-19, 08:41 PM
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Is it safe? Probably not.

It is safe to draw up to 80% rated current from a circuit so you get 12 amps for 15 amp circuits and 16 amps from a 20.

The PHEV requires a 20 amp circuit for max charge rate (3.3 kW - ~14 amps)

For a BEV, you would want higher charge rates so a hard wired charging station would make more sense and this device would be completely useless.

If your breaker box is easily accessible and reasonably close to your charging point you can get a licensed electrician to install a proper dedicated circuit for charging for close to the cost of that unit with shipping.
Even if you rent, a private landlord will probably have little issue with the install of done by a licensed electrician. Corporate owners may just deny because claims of bureaucracy are easier for lazy employees.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 21-05-19, 11:51 AM
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This should be illegal to sell. With more PHEV and EV vehicles on the market there will be more devices that should never be sold. Most consumers have no idea about electrical requirements and should contact a qualified electrical tech to install a proper electrical outlet for their vehicle. In many US communities a device like this may even have to be inspected after installation. If a person wants to really go green they should have a solar array installed dedicated to charging their vehicle!
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 21-05-19, 06:00 PM
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To the OP - Personally, I would take a pass, but who knows, it would probably work just fine, until it didn't.

I kind of doubt your fire insurance would cover you in the event it caused a problem.

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