JuiceBox EV Charger Review

JuiceBox EV Charger Review

JuiceBox was one of the first names to make it big in the world of EV charging. The first generation JuiceBox allowed you to connect your charger to your app for a controlled usage that was innovative and exciting.

Electric car owners were intrigued by the potential of JuiceBox, and the company quickly found itself at the forefront of the EV revolution.

Electric vehicles (EVs) are fantastic, but they can’t run without charge. A home charger such as JuiceBox allows you to power up the car from the comfort of your own house.

But JuiceBox did more than that – it allowed you to control and monitor how your EV was charging.

But as the EV market grew, so did the charger market. As a result, the JuiceBox (while still fantastic) was no longer the leader it once was. Leading to the creation of the JuiceBox Version 2.

This new charger has the same features as the original, updated to reflect the growing marketplace. In this review, we look at whether the new JuiceBox can live up to the promise of its predecessor.

Pros

  • Built-In WiFi: 
    The JuiceBox Smart EV charger comes complete with built-in WiFi, which you can use to connect the charger to your smartphone. 
  • Compatible With Home Devices: 
    The EV charger can be connected to Alexa and Echo devices, allowing you to control the product through voice commands. 
  • Compact Size: 
    The JuiceBox Smart EV charger features a compact design, which you can easily install anywhere on your property. 
  • Different Variants: 
    You can purchase the EV charger in 3 variants: 32 amp (7.7KW), 40 amp (9.6KW), and 48 amp (11.5KW). 

Cons

  • Internet Connection: 
    Some buyers have reported issues with the charger’s built-in WiFi connection. 

What is JuiceBox?

JuiceBox is a level 2 charger for electric vehicles. It’s available with a power output of 40 amps or 32 amps, a 25-foot cable and a NEMA 14-50 plug.

The JuiceBox charger is suitable for indoor and outdoor use. In addition, JuiceBox is a smart charger that allows you to communicate with the charger via an app. JuiceBox was an early leader in the EVSE (electric vehicle supply equipment) market.

Created by eMotorWerks, the JuiceBox version 1 was one of the first smart chargers to gain popularityEnel X purchased the company X in 2017. The JuiceBox version 2 is an updated EV charger.

What we like about JuiceBox

Fans of the original will be happy to know that the new and improved JuiceBox isn’t exactly radically different. Much of the essentials of JuiceBox have been kept the same. Unsurprisingly, considering just how popular it was.

The end result is an impressive charger, with some decent add-ons that make it a solid purchase. However, there are a few details that we’re particular fans of.

Design

The first thing that has to be mentioned is the updated design of the new JuiceBox. The JuiceBox version 2 features a sleek design that definitely looks impressive.

However, this new design isn’t just for the aesthetics, and the upgraded JuiceBox has been reworked to create a more convenient unit.

The most immediately notable change is the cable holsters. The storage rack is built-in below the central charging unit, giving you an easy place to keep your cables.

Previously, JuiceBox used a remote holster, which is still available for sale. Both options are good, and it tends to be a personal preference.

It would have been ideal if JuiceBox had kept the remote holster, and added the integrated option.

Another helpful feature of the design is the LED light. Positioned along the bottom of the box, it indicated when the car is charging, fully charged, or idling between charges—an easy way to check the car’s status.

JuiceBox have also increased the length of the cable to 25 feet. It isn’t a massive difference, but it’s still helpful.

Perhaps the design’s best new feature is the standard locking system. Once the charger is in the holster, you can use a key to lock it into place.

That gives it an extra level of security while keeping the charger maneuverable. Particularly useful for outdoor use, the locking feature is also handy inside.

Power

All the extra features mean nothing if a charger can’t deliver on the power. JuiceBox has it covered. They currently offer two power levels: the 40 amp JuiceBox, and the 32 amp. Both are fairly standard for the market, although the 40A is better than average.

Many older chargers only offer 32 amps because that used to be all the car could accept. However, newer cars can often accept 40, or even 48 amps. So the higher amp option is likely to be better moving forward.

The 40 amp also allows you to adjust the charge in case your home circuits can’t deliver the power. Buying the higher amp option works as a future-proofing in case you intend to update your circuits.

40 amps also offer a quicker charger over the 32 amp, but they’re both fast chargers.

The app and connectivity

JuiceBox made a name for itself thanks to its smart capability chargers, and that feature remains in the new version. In addition, the app offers some fantastic controls and really proves why the intelligent charger is the way forward.

With the JuiceBox app, you can start and stop charging remotely. It makes it easier to monitor energy consumption, and control your charge for an optimized performance. It also allows for dynamic scheduling, so you can charge when electricity prices are at their lowest.

Through the app, it’s also possible to adjust the amount of charge provided. It offers you all around control in a surprisingly helpful way. 

With a regular car, it’s easy to see how much you spend at the gas station. It isn’t quite as simple with an EV. But the JuiceBox allows you to see how much each charge costs and how efficiently your car runs. 

The reminders and notifications may not seem that special initially, but for a new EV owner (or a forgetful one), they’re a lifesaver. For example, the app can remind you when to plug in, so every charge is perfectly timed to fit your lifestyle. It also notifies you when the car is at full power.

The JuiceBox is Alexa and Google Assistant compatible to make life just that bit easier.

Durability

The casing of the JuiceBox is NEMA 4 rated, so it can stand up to some pretty harsh conditions. It’s suitable for use both indoors and outdoors. 

Installation

Getting your JuiceBox setup should be almost no trouble at all. It comes with a NEMA 14-50 plug, which can be either plugged in or hardwired. If you intend to hardwire, it’s best to hire a licensed electrician.

To actually attach the JuiceBox to your wall it’s a simple matter of fixing the mounting bracket. When that’s connected, the JuiceBox slides right in, and then you can lock it into place.

Power share

The power-sharing feature is one of the things that makes JuiceBox stand out. This allows you to install more than one JuiceBox on the same circuit.

The systems can then communicate with each other, to ensure they don’t overload. For example, when one vehicle is finished charging, the JuiceBox will communicate, and the other one will start.

Utility demand response program

This one may not seem like a big deal at the moment, but in future you may be very happy for the JuiceBox participation in the utility demand response program.

These programs essentially allow you to get better rates on your power consumption, by giving the utility company access to the charger.

When demand is high, you have the option to delay charging and save money. Utility Demand Response programs aren’t widespread yet, but they’re growing.

Other

Outside the impressive features, JuiceBox is good with the basics. They offer a 3-year limited warranty for residential use, which gives some peace of mind.

They’re also UL Listed and ENERGY STAR certified. In addition, the JuiceBox is compatible with all EVs sold in the United States, including Tesla (via the adapter).

These things should come standard with an EV charger, but lesser brands have a habit of neglecting the basics. JuiceBox has included everything you expect from an EV charger. 

What we don’t like about JuiceBox

Cable

The cable with the JuiceBox version 1 was often criticized for being significantly thicker than competitors’ offerings.

JuiceBox has gone some way to improve this, and the cable is undoubtedly easier to manage. However, there is still significant room for improvement.

In cold weather, the cable performs terribly. It loses flexibility and becomes difficult to maneuver. It’s disappointing that there has been so much improvement on the cable, yet this area remains overlooked.

Cold weather durability

Version 1 of the JuiceBox had a sturdy metal outer case, which is now plastic. The plastic does appear to be durable, and it is NEMA-4 rated. However, the JuiceBox may not have the strength in very cold weather.

Where to buy JuiceBox

The JuiceBox can be purchased from Amazon.com.

Final Thoughts

The version 2 doesn’t present the major step up that we might have hoped for from JuiceBox, but it is still an incredibly good unit. It consistently delivers a decent amount of power at a high speed, which is the essential feature.

What sets the JuiceBox apart is still the app features. They allow you a fantastic level of control from a distance, which helps you to utilize the charger efficiently.

You can track your costs, monitor the charge level, and even remind yourself to put the plugin. In the race to the 50 amp mark, both JuiceBox and Chargepoint’s Home Flex are leading the pack.

Read these other home charger reviews:
Evocharge Ev Charger Review
Blink Ev Home Charger Review
Grizzl-E Ev Charger Review
Megear Ev Charger Review

Similar Posts