ZE40 charging issues?


I’ve had a ZE40 since May last year and It’s been great, but over the last 2 weeks I’ve been unable to use any of the rapid chargers from polar, when I choose the type 2 cable and plug it in after 30secs or so it gives the error “no cable or wrong cable connected – vehicle not detected”.

This has been on the 2 units that are within an easy drive of me, I’ve rang polar on 4 occasions when trying these chargers, each time they do a couple of resets and enter the details of the card from their end, but no luck.

Today I was low on charge and it failed again so I had to stop at the nearest charger which was a genie point and had to register and top up with £10 (I don’t understand why they make you do this, when you are adding your card details anyway)

This was a 22kwh charger point and again it wouldn’t charge to start with, I rang genie point who did a reset tried 3 or 4 times to get it to work, he said the first response was accepted but nothing after that so it times out. Luckily on the 4th or 5th time we got it working.

Should I speak to Onto to get the car looked at? It works fine on 7kwh chargers but suddenly either doesn’t work or takes multiple attempts on faster charging units.

Polar are happy the units work, because they were all used within in previous 24 hours on the same cable.

It’s not ideal because polar are the only free fast option we have, the shell card would require a drive on the motorway to charge which defeats the object really.

Ideally you should try charging at a few other places too. Polar have a reputation for being unreliable so you can’t just jump immediately to the conclusion that it’s the car at fault.

If you call Driverline (0800 030 6840) and then press option 1, they will be able to work with you to get it booked in at your local Renault dealer at a convenient time. But you may end up waiting a while, or having a petrol courtesy car while it’s in for inspection and/or repairs. So you can save yourself some trouble if it does just turn out to be Polar’s usual issues rather than the your Zoe here.

@SealedA it’s strange that it’s suddenly started happening and I’m guessing with charge points that you have successfully used many times before.

A couple of things you could try:

Make sure there’s no dirt or foreign bodies in Zoe’s charging socket that could be covering any of the terminals.

During the handshake, support the charging cable so that the terminals can all make good contact. Sometimes the weight of the cable can mean that the plug is not held straight in the socket. This can mean that the terminals at the top of the plug don’t make good contact. When I had a ZE40, I got into the habit of systematically doing this.


Thanks Both,

I’ve charged at these locations probably 3/4 times a month over the last 9 months or so, never had a single issue in the past with them (I do support the lead while the car locks it in).

I’ll check the socket tomorrow to make sure nothing has got inside, The nearest Shell on the motorway sounds like i’d be best taking a drive to give that a test and see what happens, before calling driver line.

Try the “supporting the cable” trick on your local chargers first before going further afield. Watch how you park in relation to the charger. Ideally you want the cable to hang naturally, touching the ground just in front of the car, if it’s long enough. You don’t want the cable to be contorted to a point where the plug is putting unnecessary pressure on the socket. Once the vehicle starts charging you can gently let go of the cable. You don’t need to hold it through the entire charging session!

1 Like

Well we took a trip to the shell rapid charge point today and the worked first time with no issues, went to one of the polar chargers on the way back, tried hold the cable in different positions, moved the car in a different position etc and still nothing.

That’s got to be a polar issue rather than car?
Not ideal but at least we know not to rely on having a fast charger currently.

Good to hear your car is working fine! Yes, this is unfortunately all too common. Polar units are terribly unreliable in my experience. They are responsible for almost every BCI error I ever got in a Zoe, as well as the issues you described where it just doesn’t communicate with the car at all.

You forgot to stand on one leg :wink:

I’ve also had problems with my local 50KW polar charger with my ZE50.
Sometimes it’s fine and others it just won’t start.
No problems with Shell 50KW or Tesco 22KW

Do you get the same issue with the vehicle not detected? Or does the car give the error instead? There’s 2 potential problems. One is that Polar’s 50kW Ultrachargers have simply terrible software. The other could be to do with the earth/ground connection not being good enough since Zoe is quite picky with this compared to other EVs. This would cause a BCI Error on the car rather than the charger.

All the errors I’ve had have been on the charger itself.