Wallbox Pulsar Plus EV Charger Full Review

Last Updated: Jun 2021

Wallbox is new to North America, but It is not a new company. The company has been around for several years and has been selling equipment in over 40 countries.

They’ve actually made over a hundred thousand units. The Pulsar Plus Level 2 smart charger is their most popular unit, which may be the reason that they brought it to North America first.

In this article, we will go over its features in terms of power, weatherproof rating, construction, and smart features.

We hope this in-depth review will guide you in selecting the Pulsar Plus or perhaps another one of the chargers that we’ve reviewed before.

Overall Rating: 4.6 out of 5.0

Power and Weatherproof Rating

Powerful EV Charger – The Pulsar Plus charger is a 40-amp unit that can deliver slightly less than 10 kilowatts to your vehicle that’s good enough to charge your EV at a rate of somewhere between 24 and 32 miles of range per hour that depends on how efficient your electric vehicle is (Use our Electric Car Charging Time Calculator to calculate the estimated charge time of your own EV).

It can deliver the energy, but the vehicle has to be efficient in order to squeeze out more miles per kilowatt-hour.

It has adjustable power, and you can de-rate the power all the way down to 6 amps. You do that in the app when you’re initially setting the charger up.

It comes with a NEMA 14-50 plug. If you don’t want to plug it in, you can remove it and then just hardwire it.

NEMA 4 Rating – It also has a NEMA 4 rated exterior enclosure that’s important if you’re mounting it outside.

Most chargers today have NEMA 3 rating, which are also good for outdoor use.

However, if you live in an area with inclement weather, frequent blowing rainstorms, or driving snowstorms, NEMA 4 enclosures provide an extra level of protection.

Construction

Small Size – One of the first things you’ll notice about the unit is how small it is. It’s really compact.

The charger is only about eight inches wide by eight inches tall, and it only sticks off of the wall about four inches.

Connector and Cable – The connector of the Pulsar Plus charger is the standard J1772 one that is a common connector for all electric vehicles on the road in North America except for Tesla vehicles as Tesla uses their proprietary connector.

However, you can still use the Pulsar Plus EV charger to charge your Tesla via an adapter.

The charger has a 25-foot long cable standard which is the longest cable you’re going to find on any electric vehicle charging equipment available on the market today.

While the cable doesn’t perform fantastically. It is going to be nice and flexible if you live in warm areas, but it will probably get a little bit stiffer than that of the ChargePoint Home Flex charger.

Remote Connector Holster – The Wallbox Pulsar Plus charger has remote connector holsters. They basically give you a plastic connector holster that you mount on the wall, and the connector locks into that.

The quality might not be very good, and if you want a durable one, the BougeRV EV charger holster may be a nice choice.

You can mount the holster wherever you’d like. You don’t have to mount it right next to the unit.

The Grizzl-E charger also has the remote connector holster, while the ChargePoint Home Flex and the JuiceBox charger  have the integrated connector holsters.

wallbox Pulsar Plus remote connector holster

LED Circle – The Pulsar Plus has a LED circle around the front of the unit. It will display different colors when the charger is in different modes.- It’s a solid green color while it’s in standby mode.

– It turns to a dark blue blinking color once you plug in a vehicle, and it begins charging.

– There’s a solid turquoise color when the      home charger is in the ready mode, which means that the charger detects that it’s connected to a car, but it’s kind of in a transition status.

It’ll happen if it is plugged in and the car is still communicating with the charger. Or if the charging session is paused by the user via the app.

led circle

– The blinking turquoise color means that the unit is plugged in, and it’s ready to charge, but the owner has set up a schedule for charging.

– It’s a solid yellow color if the Pulsar Plus is in lock mode through the app.

– It’s red when the charger’s in error mode. Then do not use the Pulsar Plus, contact Wallbox and ask for direction on what you should be doing at that point.

Smart Charger

The Pulsar Plus charger is a smart charger that has a lot of smart charging features more than most smart chargers do.

Power Sharing – It also is power-sharing capable that can be an important feature to have for a number of reasons.

First off, if you live in a private garage, you can only have one circuit to your garage, and your electric capacity may be at its maximum or maybe you just don’t want to pay to have an electrician run a second circuit to your garage, and you have two electric vehicles, the ability to share power is really a good feature to have in a two EV household.

Power Sharing

It’s becoming more commonplace these days where people got their first electric vehicle a couple of years ago, and they liked it so much. Then they got their second car, and they become a two EV household.

You can actually run two Pulsar Plus chargers on one circuit if you were to have a 50-amp circuit run to your garage.

You can have two NEMA 14-50 outlets share that circuit and the Pulsar Plus charger would intelligently split the power between the two vehicles.

This feature can be even more important in a multi-family dwelling, an apartment, complex condo units where chargers are shared amongst many of the residents.

In that situation, the property manager only needs to run a couple of circuits and install a whole bunch of Wallbox chargers, and then these chargers just intelligently share the power.

Separate Accounts with Direct Billing – There’s another feature that isn’t enabled yet, but Wallbox is working on it, and it’s going to be enabled.

The feature will come via an over-the-air software update, and it will be the ability to have separate accounts and direct billing.

For example, If you live in an apartment complex, and there are multiple families that have electric vehicles, you each can set up your own account and get your own bill at the end of the month for using the chargers.

It is a really great feature. Charging in multi-family dwellings like apartment complexes, has been a real pain point for electric vehicle owners.

With this, once they set up the separate accounts with direct billing, the Pulsar Plus charger is really going to be a good tool for those types of communities to make charging that much easier.

Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Enabled – It’s the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connected smart charger that’s rare. Most smart chargers are Wi-Fi connected and don’t offer Bluetooth connectivity, but the Pulsar Plus charger does.

Why would you want that feature? These charging jobs are often done in parking garages, some of which are underground, and sometimes they’re far from the main building.

Besides, there’s no Wi-Fi service in the parking garage, so it can’t connect.

wifi-bluetooth-connection

In the case of the Pulsar Plus, you can connect it through Bluetooth on your smartphone. You do have to be within the range of the charger, of course. Then you can open it up, unlock the charger and use it.

You could also schedule charging and so forth as long as you’re within the area.

It’s a neat feature that it has both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity.

OCPP Capability – The charger also has Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP) capability, and that’s important if you want to participate in Utility Demand Programs.

The programs are not very common yet, but they are happening more and more, particularly in California.

That’s basically where you sign an agreement with your utility, and you allow them to control when you charge if the grid is under stress.

When they’re having problems with high demand, they can scale back your charging, either shut it off or lower the charging and then re-initiate your charging later on when they have the capacity to charge the car.

By agreeing to do that, you get dramatically lower electricity rates. Now there are pilot programs popping up all around the country, and this isn’t something that you might really be on your radar today, but it is something that a few years down the road.

A lot of people are going to be in service districts that offer Demand Response Programs for EV charging.  If you have an EV charger that can participate in it, you’re one step ahead of the game.

It is a neat feature. Even if you don’t use it now, you might use it sometime down the road.

Scheduling Time and Sending Notifications – The charger allows you to set a schedule to charge your vehicle at a certain time during the week and on the weekends. Then you can take advantage of the low rates during the off-peak periods.

The Pulsar Plus also sends out two different kinds of notifications.

The first notification it will send is to tell you when your charging session is finished. You get a license notification on your smartphone that says, “hey, charging’s all done. You’re good to go”.

The second notification is a reminder to plug it in. When you have scheduled charging and have the vehicle set to charge at a certain time, it will send you a notification 10 minutes before the planned charging begins.

NOTE: It might be better if the charger allows you to manipulate that and set it, say for an hour before or whatever you want. 

That might be something that would be worthwhile for a future update for Wallbox. 

Because quite often, if you have scheduled charging for late at night around midnight, you might go to sleep at 10 or 11 o’clock, and you get the notification at 10 to 12 that you didn’t plug in, but you’re asleep by then.

Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant Compatible – The Wallbox Pulsar Plus is Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant compatible. You simply say “Alexa, open my Wallbox Assistant” or “Hey Google, talk to my Wallbox,” and it then recognizes some commands.

What commands are available to use with the Wallbox Assistant?

– Start charging my Wallbox.

– What’s the status of my charging?

– Lock my charger.

– What’s my charger’s serial number?

– List my chargers (if you have multiple chargers).

– How much energy have I used to charge my battery this month?

– What was my charging cost this month?

– How much time have I spent charging my EV this month?

– Schedule a charging session.

– Contact customer support (if you’re having issues with the charger)

– …

Let’s take a quick look at the app. The main screen of the app is displayed. You can press the lock button to lock your charger. You press the scheduled timer button if you want to schedule charging.

You can view some statistics on the charging sessions on the bottom, such as how many kilowatt-hours you took on each session, how many hours you were plugged in, how long you charged for and what it cost you ( the cost is based on what you set up: pay per kilowatt-hour, pay per hour, pay per minute).

Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant Compatible
Main Screen of the App Pulsar Plus

NOTE: There’s one thing I need to note here: if you plug in your vehicle more than 12 hours before the schedule is set, the vehicle will start charging automatically.

Because the Wallbox can only use its scheduling feature if you plug in less than 12 hours in advance, so that’s important to note for those that may be on time of use plans.

Safety Certified and Warranty

Safety Certified – The Pulsar Plus home charger is safety certified.

Warranty – The EV home charger comes with a  standard three-year warranty.

TIPS

The Wallbox Pulsar Plus is a 40-amp powerful smart charger. It’s really one of the most compact chargers you’re going to find on the market today.

It’s Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled, and through the app you’re able to control the unit.

It has a 25-foot long cord and a high-quality rubberized connector and currently sells for $649.00.

The Pulsar Plus will be a really competitive home charger, which will be the competitor of  the ChargePoint Home Flex and the Enel X JuiceBox smart charger, two of the most popular smart chargers on the market today.

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