To further expand their line of residential chargers, General Electric developed the WattStation charging station. This beautifully designed, smart EV charger is sure to look great in any garage and provide its owners with fast Level 2 charging and zero energy consumption when the unit is not in use.
The charger can be installed either in a hardwire configuration or as a plug-in compatible with any NEMA 6-50 receptacle. GE used their extensive industry experience to show the whole world how versatile and stunning their products can be, and they partnered with GelaSkins to offer endless possibilities how owners can customize their WattStation. This is something that sets this product apart from basically anything else currently available on the market.
The WattStation is designed to be used with 40A 2-pole circuit breaker and an NEMA 6-50 outlet. The installation procedure itself consists of installing a wall mount bracket to the wall using the provided template to locate holes. The bracket works in such a way that a single person can easily install and remove the charger without any assistance.
It’s kept in place with heavy-duty screws and a lock to keep the unit security in place. All that’s left to do is to unwrap the plug-in cord and plug it into the wall receptacle. If you plan on using the unit outside, you have to protect the cord with a weatherproof receptacle cover.
The installation manual recommends using 3/8″ x 1-3/4″ concrete hex screws or 3/8″ x 1-7/8″ concrete anchors as mounting hardware.
What We Like
- Industrial-grade components: A quick look inside the WattStation Wall Mount charger reveals industrial-grade relays, fuses, and connections – a clear indicator that the charge has much more going for it than just great looks. This charger is built to be reliable and last a very long time.
- Modern design: Unlike the simplistic approach of the DuraStation, the WattStation features a sleek and modern design with additional customization options with removable skins covers designed and made by GelaSkins. Their vast selection features literary thousands of different designs that represent anything from the latest pop culture iconography to well-known masterpieces by respected artists. The cover has a special adhesive on the back, which enables owners to easily swap it for another one.
- Included power button: The newly included power button makes it possible to turn the charger completely off when not in use and reduce its power consumption to zero. But chances are that you won’t really be compelled to use it as it draws only 5-watts of power in standby mode.
- LED indicator lights: An elegant LED ring is built into the station around the plug inlet and illuminates in one of three different colors to signal the current status of the charging station. It’s white when the station is in standby mode, green when charging is in progress, and red in case something happens and the charger requires the attention of its owner. GE did a really good job making the LED indicator light fit the overall design of the unit.
- Flexible cord: The WattStation comes with a very solid J1772 connector and a long, flexible cord that loops back into the housing to stay elegantly hidden from view. We would really like to see a feature like this one appear one more chargers, as it is one of the most practical features you can find on any electric vehicle charger. It’s also worth noting that the length of the cord is perfect for a typical two-car garage and allows you to easily reach to either car without feeling like you are stretching the cord beyond its maximum limit.
- Weather and temperature resistant: Underneath the elegant plastic exterior lies a weather and temperature resistant body that can easily hold up to temperatures of 100 degrees and more and keeps the charger operational during cold winter days when temperature often reaches as low as 17 degrees. You will never have to think twice about whether or not the charger will keep up with often unpredictable weather and simply enjoy its worry-free nature.
What We Don’t Like
- Humming noise: This charger definitely likes to talk a lot, and you should be prepared for a loud noise every time the solenoid turns on or off. Furthermore, the WattStation produces a constant humming sound that approximately as loud as a regular refrigerator or quiet AC unit. However, you won’t be able to hear it through walls, so it shouldn’t really bother you too much.
- Bright indicator light: Even though the built-in LED light is very convenient and looks pretty, it’s also super bright and lights up the whole garage at night. Many customers decide to cover it with electrical tape in order to spare neighbors from the light show. This will hardly be an issue for most people, but it’s good to keep it in mind and be prepared for a phone call from a neighbor who thinks that somebody is in your garage.
Honestly, after our excellent experience with the GE DuraStation, we had nothing but the highest expectations. We can safely say that GE managed to deliver another quality product that is more attractive and better built than the vast majority of other EV chargers currently available on the market. Given how simple and straightforward this unit is to use, we are expecting it to be a huge hit among customers who are comfortable paying a bit extra for a premium product from a well-known company such as General Electric.