UCM module fuses

This is a guest post by SpeakEV user modrich.

I managed to locate and replace the blown 10amp fuse that feeds the reverse light, camera and parking sensors. The reason for this post is that the fuse isn’t located in the cabin fusebox. The fuse is actually under the USM module which is located to the right of the 12v battery under the bonnet.

The USM module resides under this cover. To access it, release the 4 tabs on each corner of the cover (2 at the front, 2 at the rear) and slide 2x red latches (front and rear of the cover) to the right

This is the USM’s top side.

Lifting it up reveals the fuses and connectors. I was lucky as the fuse I was looking for was the red 10amp fuse which is relatively easy to get at with the fuse puller from the main fusebox, but if it had been any of the fuses at the back of the USM it would have been a different story as this would probably have meant unplugging the module, which I wouldn’t recommend without knowing the correct procedures for doing so. Putting the fuse back in was a fiddle, a pair of small bent nose pliers might have helped, but just about managed holding it between 2 fingers. So all done, and everything back to normal and working again

I ended-up in this situation after I tried to replace the reverse light bulb whilst the car was still in reverse and shorted the fuse, so note to self: Isolate or switch-off before replacing electrical components.

Getting ZOE battery status into Node-RED

For those of you deep into home automation, using documentation compiled by Terrence Eden, me and Harm Otten wrote some Node-RED code to retrieve battery status from the same API that the the Renault Z.E. app uses. I’ve posted it on gitlab.

It outputs an MQTT message every 15 minutes. If there is more than one car associated with the login, more than one message is sent. A message looks like this

{“charging”:false,”plugged”:true,”charge_level”:100,”remaining_range”:132,”last_update”:1514654435000,”charging_point”:”INVALID”,”age”:”6:45″,”VIN”:”VF1AGVYA…..”}

In my setup the message finds it’s way to a dashboard on my Android phone using MQTT dash, a Node-RED dashboard and like all other MQTT messages a MariaDb database on my Synology NAS for logging.

The start button (while driving)

Somebody in the UK forum asked what would happen if you’d press the Start button while driving. Time for an experiment.

  • Pressing once: only thing happens is Cruise Control tripping off ;
  • Long press: nothing happens;
  • Five short presses: “ignition off”. Car starts coasting. No abrupt bleeding of speed. Brake servo remains primed, as is power steering.

To re-engage, let it coast for a few seconds, then short press again. It will do this even while the gear is in D!

One small software bug was detected while testing: the dashboard consumption / regeneration arc is gone and the “READY” label won’t go away until a “proper” cycle is done.

All testing was done done on the motorway, 100 km/h, 2013 Q210.

Disclaimer: don’t try this at home.

Another method to connect the dongle in a neat way

Picture tells more than words. Made from two sheets of back-to-back glued foam rubber, see this post. Thank you goingelectric.de user “TomTomZoe”!

 

Easy removal tip for the shelf hiding the SAE1961 connector for the dongle

goingelectric.de user “Urban” had this brilliant solution for the sticky shelf. We’ve published a more permanent solution here  but nonetheless I immediately applied some duct tape 😉

New release coming up

We have an exciting new release coming up in a few days. Next to the inevitable bug fixes, we have a few new features we think you will love.

  • In the technical section, there is now a separate screen for the 12 volt battery. You can monitor here the voltage of the battery over time. Maybe we need to add current later. We’re not entirely happy about the color coded status lines, indicating charging and car status, but it was a needed compromise at this moment to show the changes in time.
  • We have slightly modified the consumption screen. We removed the capacity in Ah from the upper graph and replaced it with the SOC percentage from the lower graph. In the lower graph, we added a gradient representing the difference between real distance traveled and the change in the range indicator. It starts in the middle and will go up (red) if the range indicator decreases more than the distance traveled, or down (green) if it decreases less. We believe it is much more useful because it indicates if your initial planning, whatever that was, is still on track. If you love the old version, it has moved to the experimental section. We might depreciate it later though.
  • There is an experimental option to make a raw dump of all the frames we use. We need both your help and this activity to check out reports we’re getting about weird values when CanZE is used on Q90 and R90 cars.

Stay tuned and feedback, as always, is much appreciated.

Dongle tester app

Why does my dongle not work? Is it working? What version is it? Why do only some of the values get displayed?

I recently discovered an app that can test a dongle and tell you what version it is, so also what features it implements:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.applagapp.elm327identifier&hl=en

Here is what the app produces for my MaxiScan dongles, which advertises itself as an v1.5 …

More battery change pictures

This time made by car mechanic of one of Bochane Almere, a ZE dealer here, through forum user “hachy”. Thanks for letting us use them!

Nice!

Reprogramming

Battery in situ. note the HV cable connected

 

Lifting the battery from the packaging

 

Careful now

Lift with positioning tool

Measuring leakage between chassis and the 400 volt bus at the HV fuses for the Climate compressor

 

Chimney closeup. Center is air in, others air out

Underside, battery removed

Edit: and lots more, with video, here.

 

The charge plug locking mechanism #3

See this post for the sometimes problematic cable locking mechanism.

Today my 2013 Q210 ZOE was at the dealer for it’s 4 year maintenance. I arrived there a tad low on battery so I asked them if they could please hook it up once they were done with it. No problem of course. Just as I arrived to collect it, I saw the chief mechanic getting in (it was already hooked up), so I walked up to him first. He was a tad nervous and said he had updated the charger firmware and now he noticed it wasn’t charging. I walked around only to hear the somewhat familiar cam wheel “whee whee” noise from the locker mechanism, so I joked: “well, luckily my friend, I do know what is wrong. Hooked the thing up again and all was dandy, though now of course I had to wait a bit to make it home.

Chatting along he told me the locking motor was now a new part number and maybe I wanted to replace it (80-ish euro). I decided to go for it. I have had a few early terminated charge sessions, and like the inner flap hinge, sometimes Renault does not always acknowledge a warranty issue, but they do improve the design over time. I’ll report back on this.

Dongle trouble #5

When I got home tonight the KONNWEI dongle I ordered on August the 29th had arrived directly from China.

I ordered it here. Less than 9 euros.

It had the proper 120 ohm resistance on the CANbus. Next, I opened it up and it is the new design, i.o.w., it seems like the error was found and new production runs are OK. Of course we don’t know how many old supplies there are and if by chance I got the top of a just replenished stack. YMMV.

Note in the previous post that the problem started occurring already in April. I didn’t know this but at least there is a fair chance the problem dongles are sort of slowly going out of stock.

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