Author Topic: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries  (Read 718 times)

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jlsoaz

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Hi -

I purchased a used 2013 Volt plug-in hybrid with roughly a 35 mile all-ev range.  This has proven a better strategy for me so far than my previous transportation solution which was a Nissan Leaf battery-only vehicle.  That vehicle had an EV range which was too short for some of my trips, and there is no good public charging infrastructure where I live.  Where I live is Rio Rico, Arizona, USA.  It is not "that" remote (about 15-20 thousand people), but it is about 60 miles from the nearest public DC quick-charge station for electric vehicles, and so was not good for trying to operate a short-range early generation BEV.  A way to get quick perspective from an electric vehicle driver point of view is to go here:

https://www.plugshare.com/location/20748

This is the only public J1772 L2 in the county, so far. 

When I leased a short range BEV, I sometimes barely made it home by driving south (going uphill) from Tucson back here, and this station helped.  Basically, I had to retain ownership of a gasoline vehicle for longer trips or wait for hours at a station any time I needed to travel outside this small county.

All that is in the past, and I now am able to drive most of my miles based on charging my car at my house, while occasionally the gasoline engine will need to turn on during longer trips.  So far I've driven about 700 miles, used about 5 gallons of premium unleaded and I'm not sure how many kWh.  Not all of my kWh are solar (I am grid-tied and only have about 2.7 kW), but some are.

There are I think a variety of considerations.  One of them is that although my setup may seem to be in its way both energy saving, less polluting and lower CO2, I think it can be argued that if I lived in a city and took an electric train or bus, and so-on, then maybe that would be a superior solution on those points.  I am not sure how the numbers compare.  However, for where I live, this seems to me to be a better solution (at least, for what I want) than driving a plain gasoline vehicle.  I do realize that some rural livers don't care about low CO2, or maybe even other pollutants, but I do.  As to saving energy, I love being able to drive electric, and even driving on gasoline being able to get very good mileage.

I didn't like going into debt to buy a newer used vehicle, and trading in a vehicle that I owned outright, but at some point the old ride I had was just not what I wanted.  So, financial conservation is something I thought about also.

As well, I do want to say (having already known this from my Leaf experience) that in my view, driving a good BEV or PHEV can be simply a superior driving experience, in some ways.  For one main thing, the reduced Noise, Vibration and Harshness is, in my view, spectacular.  Even luxury vehicles costing nearly USD $100,000 or more, and for which low NVH is a strong feature, may not be able to match the low NVH that I got in a used Volt (at least until the gasoline engine comes on).  I must admit though I've not been in a Rolls Royce or the like, and I don't know for sure how it stacks up.  It would be interesting to see a scientific measurement.  I'll have to check later if there are any good articles on this.

JW

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2017, 04:15:25 PM »
are you using the EV to somehow power your house? I am ASE Advanced level Specialist and the voltages are out of reach to do something like that. If Im missing something let me know.

SparWeb

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2017, 05:08:29 PM »
Thank you very much for the report about the Volt.  I am gradually approaching the need to replace my daily-driver car and I expect to look seriously at PHEV's on the next go-round.  I live in the country, making pure-battery vehicles unlikely to suit my needs, especially in the winter, and especially considering the possibility of collisions at highway speed.  Now that the field of HEV's has diversified and offers Plug-ins (in Canada, not all models are offered as in the USA), I have some serious contenders to choose from.
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Harold in CR

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2017, 08:15:58 AM »
For JW and others regarding Ev's and house power. Google Jehu Garcia powerwall.

Also--https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/kzz7zm/diy-powerwall-builders-are-using-recycled-laptop-batteries-to-power-their-homes

 I'm slowly converting Volt Battery modules for e-motorcycle and house power. Don't have the car for charging, so, I don't want to hijack this thread.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2017, 08:23:10 AM by Harold in CR »

george65

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2017, 04:40:37 PM »
I do realize that some rural livers don't care about low CO2, or maybe even other pollutants, but I do. 

While your intentions are noble, I have to question their effectiveness.
A quick look up of arizona power supply shows it to be 10% renewable at best. The rest is Coal, Gas and Nuke generated in the majority.
With only a 2.7 Kw solar supply of your own, I'd suggest for the most part you are merely substituting one Fossil fuel source for another. I'd further tend to think if a primary goal was emissions, you'd be far better off with a Diesel Vehicle and running it on 100% renewable Veg oil.

You would have the advantage of a far greater range ( I carry extra Fuel in my 4WD and do a 2500KM trip once-twice a year using nothing but veg) Cost savings and be able to use the power you make from your solar in your home.
If you are electric dedicated, then Putting a LOT more panels on your roof would be very worthwhile.  You would generate probably 10-15 Kwh a day with what you have now and I can't see that going far in an electric vehicle.
Another option may be to charge the thing with a veg fuelled generator.

All this electric car thing is good and well but people really tick me off when they start talking about zero emissions. NO, there is noting coming out your tail pipe but the one a few hundred miles away has a 30 Ft round tail pipe and that where the emissions your Vehicle makes are emitted from. Either that or it's put into strongly sealed containers. and buried under mountains for future generations to try to figure out what the hell to do with it.

Electrics now have speed, range and fast charging.... for the time being.
There are not too many places in the world where the grid would be able to take Twice let alone maybe 50 times the load transfering all the IC Vehicles to electrics would impose.  This is the real problem with electrics.

Sure, Tesla is making ( broken) promises of how many model 3's they are going to be able to produce by the end of 2018 but I wonder how fast the grid is going to be able to keep up with them?  The thing of charging stations will be an issue as well.  If you compare how many vehicles a service station can refuel in an hour and how many cars can get through a charging station, there is a real problem there on several levels.
In busy times where there is a lot of traffic, It's hard to see how they are going to have enough space an charging stations to cater for the amount of people that want to recharge.

Sure, put a charging station in every parking bay at maccas so people can go in , grab a bit and a coffee and have a break while their car charges up.
I think I looked up before a tesla can suck down 120Kw at a charging station.  On 240V that's nearly 500A. A normal house connection here is 80A and it would be extremely rare to find a single place sucking down that much power.
Let say there are 20 Charging stations in the carpark, that's 2.4 Mw of power just at that site . How many other sites will that segment of the grid be feeding and further back, how many will be in the area supplied but the local sub and power stations?

Another thing that's not mentioned with charging time with teslas is they quote an hour. That's true if the thing isn't completely flat which we'll assume it is not and people leave a small reserve as one normally would with a petrol car.  You go to the supercharger and plug in next to the guy that just pulled up. The charger is current limited and you are only going to get 30Kw being the second car to plug in rather than the 120Kw which is the max charge rate. Because the guy beside was before you but still needs to do a full charge more or less, your recharge could take 2 hours not 1.  And that is if it's getting full power in the first place and the site isn't limited on it's max current draw because of all the other stations and the wiring at the power pole.

Thanks to the rush to remove Coal fired power stations and go renewable, we are facing severe power shortages here. It's not going to be a quick fix and I can easily see limits being put on EV's should they start becoming popular so as to stop Taking power away from homes, Businesses and places like hospitals, schools etc.

The problem now is not with EV's but will be how to in fact Fuel them.
Seems like the same old problem to me.



SparWeb

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2017, 09:36:55 PM »
Thankfully, the subject of this thread is just about One person's experience with One EV and not about the electrical grid of the state of Arizona, the USA, or the world.  Since the OP's got their own system set up professionally at home now, it's not their problem who else in the world needs to convert over later.  Any trend in that direction, BTW, will most likely fix the limitation that Jlsoaz has with charging stations, by making a demand for more of them.

NB. There is a J1772 charging station between my house and work, now.  I'm one step closer to making the change, myself  :)
No one believes the theory except the one who developed it.  Everyone believes the experiment except the one who ran it.

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jlsoaz

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2017, 08:52:37 AM »
are you using the EV to somehow power your house? I am ASE Advanced level Specialist and the voltages are out of reach to do something like that. If Im missing something let me know.

Thanks, I am not trying to power my house with the PHEV.  It is just for driving.  I do separately have 12 kWh of deep cycle lead acid batteries and a smart inverter to manage decisions as to whether to draw from grid power, solar power, battery power, or where to put the energy when not needed.  The batteries are 4x12 Volts = 48 Volts (the installer told me on this particular system that was important).  They are high amp-hour and seem to be still going ok after a few years in my garage.

jlsoaz

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2017, 08:58:10 AM »
Thank you very much for the report about the Volt.  I am gradually approaching the need to replace my daily-driver car and I expect to look seriously at PHEV's on the next go-round.  I live in the country, making pure-battery vehicles unlikely to suit my needs, especially in the winter, and especially considering the possibility of collisions at highway speed.  Now that the field of HEV's has diversified and offers Plug-ins (in Canada, not all models are offered as in the USA), I have some serious contenders to choose from.

Hey, yes, your considerations seem somewhat similar to mine, but not the same of course (bit of a contrast between sort-of-rural Arizona and rural Canada).  I like your thinking.... if a BEV is not right for you at this time, then go for a PHEV.  A counter-point for me has been that the slowness of proliferation of new PHEV choices into the marketplace (at least two of the best sellers in Europe are still not here) meant that for me when I went to buy a used PHEV at my price point, there were very few choices.  I don't know if you will find what you want (new or used) when you go to look at PHEVs, but if buying new, I do think there is a wider array of choices on the market or arriving soon.

Speaking only for myself/opinions my own.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2017, 09:02:18 AM by jlsoaz »

jlsoaz

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2017, 05:32:12 PM »
Thankfully, the subject of this thread is just about One person's experience with One EV and not about the electrical grid of the state of Arizona, the USA, or the world.  Since the OP's got their own system set up professionally at home now, it's not their problem who else in the world needs to convert over later.  Any trend in that direction, BTW, will most likely fix the limitation that Jlsoaz has with charging stations, by making a demand for more of them.

NB. There is a J1772 charging station between my house and work, now.  I'm one step closer to making the change, myself  :)

Hi - one issue that I sort of anticipated (I guess) but which in its way feels somewhat unanticipated - when I had a short-range BEV, the location of J1772s was critical.  With a PHEV it is all-but-irrelevant.  Further (and I guess I sort of knew this) there is an issue with parking my PHEV and charging at a Level 2 since, if a BEV pulls up and needs it, and there are no others around, then they will be unhappy, may get up on their high horse, etc.  I'm ok if they unplug me, but could do without the moralizing and etiquette debates so I largely avoid this. 

I worked with a local business person years ago to put in the only public J1772 in this small county, and that helped me get home with my short-range BEV and so I'm quite familiar with when charging is a need and not a want.  I think the issues are somewhat different for rural J1772 and DC quick charge spaced far apart, and for urban areas where folks may have more choice?  I don't know.  The urban folks also have to contend with a lot more crowding in terms of the on-the-road EV population.  To my knowledge, I'll guess there are less than a dozen EV owners in the county.  That one J1772 that is put in around here is the only proper J1772 "watering hole" for one's horse for dozens of miles, so I do use it for my PHEV, but gingerly (such as sticking around to move my car in case a BEV pulls up). 

When I used to try to lobby some other local businesses to put one in, I sometimes felt like I was in the 19th century trying to sell saloon or b&b owners on the idea of putting in a horse watering trough.

addendum/ps: this may already be clear, but to note or re-note for a moment: there is a shift when you get a BEV or PHEV, involving getting used to charging at home at night (for most folks).  So, yes, for some purposes, public charge stations are critical, but it bears mentioning that for many BEV drivers, and as well I think for many (nearly all?) PHEV drivers, a high percentage of charging takes place at home and, if a driver works for a place that is amenable, then at work as well.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2017, 05:43:22 PM by jlsoaz »

SparWeb

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2017, 08:41:19 PM »
Hi JLsoaz,

Thank you very much for the etiquette tip!  It makes sense - a sort of pecking-order should evolve that allows the battery-dependent vehicles to step ahead of the hybrids.  There's a gas station 1 block away from the plug-in parking lot, so little reason to object when a Miev butts in ahead of a Prius, except one's pride!

I suppose one way to manage the politeness factor, and at the same time get some errands done while the car battery charges, would be to leave a card under the wiper of your car with your cell phone number.  A BEV driver that pulls up may appreciate being able to call you before unplugging your car.  This may not "scale up" to a city crowded with BEV's, but for now with just a few EV's around, the occasional call from a fellow EV driver sounds like fun!
No one believes the theory except the one who developed it.  Everyone believes the experiment except the one who ran it.

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jlsoaz

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2017, 05:53:43 AM »
Hi George65 - I think you have some misunderstandings going on here:

In my own case:
- I'll estimate offhand that my solar is providing about 1/2 of my electricity use (including at-home PHEV charging).  Some fractional percentage should probably also be attributed to the 6 MW or so solar plant down the street in this small community.  Yes, the grid would likely be considered dirty.  Once I have enough money to install more solar panels (something I've been doing over time), the greening of my electrons (other than the tie to the semi-brown grid) will be complete.  Once I have enough money to replace my PHEV with a proper long-range BEV (about 6 years from now when a Chevy Bolt or Tesla Model 3 will come done in used prices to my price range) then my transportation will be close to zero carbon.  While I'll be giving back enough clean electrons to say I'm zero net carbon, I think strictly speaking, since I'd still be using a partially dirty utility for some things, to be fully zero carbon I'd have to go off-grid, or the utility would have to go zero carbon.

- I see EVS as similar to diesel vehicles in that the fuel source can be changed over time.  This cannot be said of gasoline vehicles other than maybe high percentage ethanol flex-fuel vehicles. 

- I have attended local biofuel meetings a long time ago, but in my own case, it would be difficult for me to run veggie diesel.  The fuel is not that common around here.   I am not much more likely to brew my own than I am to build my own EV.  On the other hand, I'd be happy to consider buying a biodiesel PHEV.  I should note also, even 13 years ago, used diesels were not that common around here, and as for keeping a new vehicle under warranty, I was not willing to pay the depreciation on a new vehicle, much less spend my time winding my way through any warranty considerations.

In general:
- The high kW Tesla public charging you've heard about takes place at DC quick charge "supercharger" stations built by Tesla.

(Just in case this is of use, although you may have already seen this, you can see a map of them and other charge stations here, using the filters):
https://www.plugshare.com

Voltages at Superchargers, per plug are much higher than 240 Volts (as they are at other DC quick-chargers for other vehicles).  No, I don't think the kW drop off in the way you describe when more than one Tesla is charging.  I have lost track of exactly what Tesla has said on the matter, but they have demonstrated and I think discussed from the start a  commitment to making the stations renewably powered and have gone pretty far out of their way as a company to incorporate (literally) solar into what they do.

There is some recent information here as to Tesla's Superchargers and renewability:
http://www.thedrive.com/sheetmetal/11338/tesla-going-off-the-grid-plans-to-power-superchargers-using-solar
Tesla Going Off the Grid, Plans to Power Superchargers Using Solar
More infrastructure upgrades announced to solidify Tesla's footing in the marketplace.
BY ROB STUMPFJUNE 9, 2017

When Teslas charge at 240 Volts AC, I think this is more in the range of 5 or 10 or 20 kW (such as at homes, or such as you'll see at some hotels and such, on the map).

- In general, in discussing the EV Industry, it is common for some journalists and industry critics to go out of their way to mix some bad information and assumptions in, when discussing the brown grid issues.  (Note, I am not referring to you, but to certain websites and such).

I haven't studied it as much recently, but I am going to estimate this is somewhat similar to some of the over-simplified carbon criticisms that are leveled sometimes at renewable fuels such as whether it is improper to use food for fuel, whether fossil-fuel-based pesticides were used in the farming, whether petroleum was used in the farming or transportation of the fuel, whether the localized air emissions are healthy (NOx), whether renewable fuels really can be scaled, etc.  There are I think some nuanced, useful and balanced answers (such as that some renewable fuels on balance are much lower carbon than others, and that ultimately synthesis of renewable fuels will likely be possible at much higher volumes than today), but there are times when it is apparent there is going to be someone who from the start of the conversation is really just out to look only at the problems and not the solutions. 

I think it's somewhat similar with EVs and certain websites or industry critics who are always going to ignore some of the responses and counter-balancing considerations.

- From the start of EV deployment, there's been a decent correlation of demographics of EV early adopters and PV early adopters.  I reckon over time the percentages may fall off somewhat.

- On the big question of whether we should be fearful that massive amounts of brown grid power are needed to power high-volume deployment of EVs, I do agree it is a concern (just as there would be some major concerns to try to project a planet with a 90 or 100m bbl per day petroleum habit transitioning to veggie diesel.)  However, I have heard conflicting points as to whether it really ends up being quite as much a concern as you describe.  If, per capita, each vehicle passenger stops using their average number of gasoline or petro-diesel gallons per day and replaces them with 10-20 kWh per day (wild guess as to # of miles, on average being around 30-60 miles), then I think instead of making an assumption that this is not tenable in a renewably-powered world, we should look at the matter with a fresh set of eyes and ask, given the pace of change-over to renewable power, whether it will be possible.

I do agree that renewable fuels get short shrift from some EV advocates, and there are times when I may sort of be one of those people, but at other times I think I've kept some perspective on renewable fuels.  For example, I have noted in another forum that one of the major failings of the Volt I bought is that it does not allow me to fill the gasoline tank with reneweable or partially-renewable fuel of some sort.  I'm not sure how reliable the information is, but one reason I've been offered why this is so is that it would be difficult to design the vehicle such that the fuel side could sit for weeks or months unused (as happens with some drivers who stay within the EV range for weeks or months at a time and don't use gasoline from the tank).  I think this particular objection could be solved by programming the vehicle to burn some fuel on occasion even if the driver didn't want.  This isn't ideal (the vehicle has much lower noise-vibration-harshness under EV power) but is I think possible.

Anyway, some thoughts.

opinions my own / speaking only for myself.

I do realize that some rural livers don't care about low CO2, or maybe even other pollutants, but I do. 

While your intentions are noble, I have to question their effectiveness.
A quick look up of arizona power supply shows it to be 10% renewable at best. The rest is Coal, Gas and Nuke generated in the majority.
With only a 2.7 Kw solar supply of your own, I'd suggest for the most part you are merely substituting one Fossil fuel source for another. I'd further tend to think if a primary goal was emissions, you'd be far better off with a Diesel Vehicle and running it on 100% renewable Veg oil.

You would have the advantage of a far greater range ( I carry extra Fuel in my 4WD and do a 2500KM trip once-twice a year using nothing but veg) Cost savings and be able to use the power you make from your solar in your home.
If you are electric dedicated, then Putting a LOT more panels on your roof would be very worthwhile.  You would generate probably 10-15 Kwh a day with what you have now and I can't see that going far in an electric vehicle.
Another option may be to charge the thing with a veg fuelled generator.

All this electric car thing is good and well but people really tick me off when they start talking about zero emissions. NO, there is noting coming out your tail pipe but the one a few hundred miles away has a 30 Ft round tail pipe and that where the emissions your Vehicle makes are emitted from. Either that or it's put into strongly sealed containers. and buried under mountains for future generations to try to figure out what the hell to do with it.

Electrics now have speed, range and fast charging.... for the time being.
There are not too many places in the world where the grid would be able to take Twice let alone maybe 50 times the load transfering all the IC Vehicles to electrics would impose.  This is the real problem with electrics.

Sure, Tesla is making ( broken) promises of how many model 3's they are going to be able to produce by the end of 2018 but I wonder how fast the grid is going to be able to keep up with them?  The thing of charging stations will be an issue as well.  If you compare how many vehicles a service station can refuel in an hour and how many cars can get through a charging station, there is a real problem there on several levels.
In busy times where there is a lot of traffic, It's hard to see how they are going to have enough space an charging stations to cater for the amount of people that want to recharge.

Sure, put a charging station in every parking bay at maccas so people can go in , grab a bit and a coffee and have a break while their car charges up.
I think I looked up before a tesla can suck down 120Kw at a charging station.  On 240V that's nearly 500A. A normal house connection here is 80A and it would be extremely rare to find a single place sucking down that much power.
Let say there are 20 Charging stations in the carpark, that's 2.4 Mw of power just at that site . How many other sites will that segment of the grid be feeding and further back, how many will be in the area supplied but the local sub and power stations?

Another thing that's not mentioned with charging time with teslas is they quote an hour. That's true if the thing isn't completely flat which we'll assume it is not and people leave a small reserve as one normally would with a petrol car.  You go to the supercharger and plug in next to the guy that just pulled up. The charger is current limited and you are only going to get 30Kw being the second car to plug in rather than the 120Kw which is the max charge rate. Because the guy beside was before you but still needs to do a full charge more or less, your recharge could take 2 hours not 1.  And that is if it's getting full power in the first place and the site isn't limited on it's max current draw because of all the other stations and the wiring at the power pole.

Thanks to the rush to remove Coal fired power stations and go renewable, we are facing severe power shortages here. It's not going to be a quick fix and I can easily see limits being put on EV's should they start becoming popular so as to stop Taking power away from homes, Businesses and places like hospitals, schools etc.

The problem now is not with EV's but will be how to in fact Fuel them.
Seems like the same old problem to me.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2017, 06:00:50 AM by jlsoaz »

jlsoaz

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #11 on: December 13, 2017, 06:24:11 AM »
Hi SparWeb - yes, I think the notion of leaving a placard or card or something is something I've found myself mulling over more, now that I've bought a PHEV.  Examples, though I'm not sure I've found quite what I want:

http://www.evchargernews.com/chargeprotocolcard.pdf
http://www.evextend.com/EVEX-VLTMAG.php
http://www.evextend.com/Products.php

In general, I think EV Etiquette is a somewhat hot-button issue among some drivers, and while there are one or two points of agreement, I would not want to come across as heavy-handed in my own views.  My own view is that I see some drivers who will tell you the principles of EV Etiquette as though they are gospel, and I just disagree with that black and white simplified view some of them seem to have.

There is one sort of obvious point of agreement, which is that most of us agree if there is a designated EV spot, we'd appreciate it if ICE drivers did not park there.  However, even with that, I think it's somewhat contextual.  For example, is the spot one of the prime spots, and used only once every few months by PEVs?  If so, can we really fully blame ICE drivers who get sick of parking further away?  My own view contrary to some others is that parking lot EV spots should not be put near handicapped and MD spots, but should be further away and  more of a compromise with ICE drivers.

Basically, what I want is that if I do plug in at a public station (it would only be L1 or L2) then a BEV driver should feel free to unplug me and plug in their own vehicle.  This just gets complicated quickly though.  For example, at some stations, there may be no other parking spot, so they would need me to show up quickly and move my car, but what if my phone is off or busy with something?  Would it really be worth all that trouble not only for me but the other driver?  Or what if there was another spot but it was occupied after I left?  Other complication examples: different PHEVs may have different issues when unplugged while charging.  My Volt was set with an alarm that would go off if unplugged without doing something (I guess to help prevent theft of the expensive chord?).  I had to learn to undo the alarm.  What if I was a BEV driver and ran across a PHEV and wanted to unplug them but didn't know if it would break something or set off an alarm? 

Perhaps more importantly, there are the complications of the human element.... you don't know if you will enrage a PHEV driver by unplugging them.  Some PHEV drivers encourage use of placards that communicate it is only ok to unplug them if the charge is finished.  I don't agree with that, but that's how they think.  Then, maybe there are BEV drivers who would get instantly upset about a PHEV using a public charge station - almost as though it is an ICE parked at an EV spot.  So, on the human side, I've seen some strong/complicating disagreement.  So, I think some PHEV drivers will avoid public charge stations altogether, while others will use them.  So far I've erred a bit too much on the side of not using them (I can think of one situation where I really should have just gone ahead). 

I think I'd have a better sense of this if I was around other EVs and public charge stations a lot, but I literally live in a county with one public L2 and only 1 other PHEV that I've actually seen, so this dog hasn't been quite as socialized as might help know all the issues. 

Hi JLsoaz,

Thank you very much for the etiquette tip!  It makes sense - a sort of pecking-order should evolve that allows the battery-dependent vehicles to step ahead of the hybrids.  There's a gas station 1 block away from the plug-in parking lot, so little reason to object when a Miev butts in ahead of a Prius, except one's pride!

I suppose one way to manage the politeness factor, and at the same time get some errands done while the car battery charges, would be to leave a card under the wiper of your car with your cell phone number.  A BEV driver that pulls up may appreciate being able to call you before unplugging your car.  This may not "scale up" to a city crowded with BEV's, but for now with just a few EV's around, the occasional call from a fellow EV driver sounds like fun!
« Last Edit: December 13, 2017, 06:29:09 AM by jlsoaz »

george65

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #12 on: December 13, 2017, 06:41:13 PM »

-  The fuel is not that common around here.   I am not much more likely to brew my own than I am to build my own EV.

Just to pint out......

You don't have to make Bio diesel. I don't . Run straight veg oil for 15 years now although I have helped a mate make 1000's of litres of bio. He stopped that about 5 years ago and it didn't really make any difference to me other than I now Collect a lot less oil as I don't need to try and help him with his supply.

As for the fuel now being common, It's in every second restaurant.  Securing a supply is usualy just a matter of approaching the restaurants to form a relationship to get the supply.
Understand you want to go electric but just clarifying a couple of points.


Quote
Voltages at Superchargers, per plug are much higher than 240 Volts (as they are at other DC quick-chargers for other vehicles).  No, I don't think the kW drop off in the way you describe when more than one Tesla is charging.

You are correct, the voltage of a supercharger is higher than 240V but the total wattage/ kw draw is what matters not the volts. I merely expressed the power in a term people would be familiar with.

As far as the superchargers backing off, That's fact from tesla themselves not something I dreamed up.  The total time to charge 2 cars plugged into a supercharger at the same time is a lot longer than if just one is.  Stands to reason.  There is not an ulimited amount of current available  especially at the rates these things are already consuming.


Superchargers may go to panels but untill that happens, they will still be grid fed and the way tesla talk and then delay, it's one of those things I'll  wait to see before I put much cred in it.  They went on about their roof tiles 6 months ago but you still can't get specs or pricing on the things. Lot of razzamatazz for nothing really.  If they don't have the product ready, launching it when they still can't give any details is nothing but a PR stunt.


Quote
- In general, in discussing the EV Industry, it is common for some journalists and industry critics to go out of their way to mix some bad information and assumptions in, when discussing the brown grid issues.  (Note, I am not referring to you, but to certain websites and such).

I think it's somewhat similar with EVs and certain websites or industry critics who are always going to ignore some of the responses and counter-balancing considerations.
.

I know the green and EV promoters do this to death.
You have probably heard of the big battery here built in only 100 Days.  Ya!  The 100 Days started about 100 Days  after the thing started being built. The 100 days was after they had enough of the thing built for the grid authorities to check and pass it for connection.  Real build time as in when they started construction to commissioning was 7 months. 

The EV thing with " No emissions" is another complete crock ignoring emission considerations from the power stations.

IF anything, I think the EV promoters are a lot more guilty of hiding the real truth and facts in order to make things look as sunshine and unicorns as they can.


Quote
  If, per capita, each vehicle passenger stops using their average number of gasoline or petro-diesel gallons per day and replaces them with 10-20 kWh per day (wild guess as to # of miles, on average being around 30-60 miles), then I think instead of making an assumption that this is not tenable in a renewably-powered world, we should look at the matter with a fresh set of eyes and ask, given the pace of change-over to renewable power, whether it will be possible.

I fail to see the connection between the  non use of liquid fossil fuels and the generation of electricity to power EV's.
Very different forms of energy and not interchangeable unless you burn that fossil fuel to make electricity at which point you are back to step 1.

Quote
I do agree that renewable fuels get short shrift from some EV advocates,

I am not an advocate of Renewable liquid fuels.  They are a crock on a large scale. There is not the space to grow sufficient to replace fossil and that's the tip of the iceberg.  From My POV, EV's are the better bet because it is possible to supply more of the energy required that way than through growing fuel.

For Nutters like me whom are an incalculable small number of the vehicle fleet to run their own vehicles on veg, it's ok,  For even 5% of the population to do it, not going to happen.


 
Quote
This isn't ideal (the vehicle has much lower noise-vibration-harshness under EV power) but is I think possible.

You have mentioned this a couple of times.
I don't know what I ic car you have driven but the IC's I drive that are even 7 years old are silky smooth and I have to look at the tacho to even know if they are running.

NVH comes mainly from the road and the way the vehicle is constructed , not the vehicle drive train.  The Engine, gearbox, diff is only a small part of the over all NVH  and not intrusive or significant in anything as modern as an EV. 

jlsoaz

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #13 on: December 16, 2017, 11:03:57 AM »

Just to pint out......

You don't have to make Bio diesel. I don't . Run straight veg oil for 15 years now although I have helped a mate make 1000's of litres of bio. He stopped that about 5 years ago and it didn't really make any difference to me other than I now Collect a lot less oil as I don't need to try and help him with his supply.

As for the fuel now being common, It's in every second restaurant.  Securing a supply is usualy just a matter of approaching the restaurants to form a relationship to get the supply.
Understand you want to go electric but just clarifying a couple of points.

cool thanks.

Quote
Quote
Voltages at Superchargers, per plug are much higher than 240 Volts (as they are at other DC quick-chargers for other vehicles).  No, I don't think the kW drop off in the way you describe when more than one Tesla is charging.

You are correct, the voltage of a supercharger is higher than 240V but the total wattage/ kw draw is what matters not the volts. I merely expressed the power in a term people would be familiar with. 

Ok, but on this point, I really have to say: We're at fieldlines.com, I'm pretty sure people here can take it, as far as giving them the straight dope on amps, Volts, AC or DC and kW.  We can also avoid giving out incorrect information, such as the Volts you quoted and possibly the Amps.

Quote
As far as the superchargers backing off, That's fact from tesla themselves not something I dreamed up.  The total time to charge 2 cars plugged into a supercharger at the same time is a lot longer than if just one is.  Stands to reason.  There is not an ulimited amount of current available  especially at the rates these things are already consuming.   

Yes, they do back off, and upon further research, somewhat along the lines you say, apparently:

https://forums.tesla.com/forum/forums/superchargers-super-slow-when-shared

I don't know if they have updated this sharing protocol, and I don't see it as quite the big deal that you do, but noting the information.  Also noting the point by one of the people at that link (if they were accurate) that once the first car in line is done, the others will speed up.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2017, 11:09:30 AM by jlsoaz »

JW

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2017, 03:26:41 PM »
Quote from: jlsoaz
Ok, but on this point, I really have to say: We're at fieldlines.com, I'm pretty sure people here can take it, as far as giving them the straight dope on amps, Volts, AC or DC and kW.  We can also avoid giving out incorrect information, such as the Volts you quoted and possibly the Amps.

I don't know about this "We're at fieldlines.com" remark...

We do try and alot of the members are very knowledgeable. I guess they will get to it when they feel like it.

Quote from: Harold in CR
I'm slowly converting Volt Battery modules for e-motorcycle and house power. Don't have the car for charging, so, I don't want to hijack this thread.

george65

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #15 on: December 16, 2017, 07:06:42 PM »
Yes, they do back off, and upon further research, somewhat along the lines you say, apparently:

I don't know if they have updated this sharing protocol, and I don't see it as quite the big deal that you do, but noting the information.  Also noting the point by one of the people at that link (if they were accurate) that once the first car in line is done, the others will speed up.

Don't know why you think what I said is "Somewhat right", I got it from the tesla site not a forum of peoples opinions.
Although the forum posts you linked are old and now somewhat out of date, the protocall is the same for sharing.  they have upgraded the superchargers capability but they are still doing the same output which is beyond the vehicles recharging capacity currently so the result is the same.

The second car to a charging station will get the lower charge rate. If, as in the scenario I suggested, they got there just before you, your initial charge will be 30 kw instead of 120.  Theirs will lower to 90 kw or less. As they get over 50% charge your charge rate will step up. If both cars were pretty low on charge, your recharge time will be closer to 2 hours ( or more) than the one hour they quote.

Double charge time would be a big deal to me.
An hour I can fill in with a leisurely meal mid way through a Journey. 2 hours is a different matter. I'm sitting round bored and getting tired and irritable that 2nd hour.  For a trip to take 5 hours ( or 6)  instead of 4 does make a difference to me and I do a lot of trips this length. I'm not going to be able to sleep so it means I'm more tired the back end of that trip than what I would have been otherwise.  Usually I do a 4 hour trip and I either blow right through or I'll stop and go to the bathroom, grab a coffee and go happily on.  the mrs likes to stop when she is with me and get something to eat but that's 15 min and back on the road. I can Imagine having to tell her ( and the kids when they were younger) that the stop was half the actual travel time!
What a nightmare that would be!

With an electric, having to wait an hour for that trip is bad enough but liveable, having to wait 2hrs and I'm taking an IC car no question.  I have looked at the trip I do to go see my father and a tesla won't apparently make it on one charge. there isn't a supercharger along the way either so it's not practical.

There are only really a handful of stations along major routes here anyway.  Can I fit a towbar to a tesla?  Least then I can have a Diesel generator in the back running to extend and recharge so I can get to where I want to go! 

Kinda defeats the purpose of having one.

Where I live, these other EV's literally wouldn't get me to the shops and back.  I can imagine asking one of them to put in an EV charging station.
I'd be laughed out the place and wouldn't blame them.

The weather has been hot here last few day. As predicted, due to the gut busting hurry to blow up all the coal fired power stations, there was wide spread blackouts.  Getting the grid power supply back to speed with the rapidly expanding population and being hampered by the green bent might take a decade but may never happen at all in reality.  Won't be Summer when everyone has their AC on that will be the problem, it will be in winter when the solar radiation is half of the summer yield.

-If- the ev's have expanded like predicted ( which I doubt) there is going to be a real quandary over who can use the power and for what?
If you haven't got at least 10KW of panels on your roof and a bank of Batteries to charge from, I can see EV charging at very least being restricted.
That may be to through the day as in the green washed world, solar will be off line at night and if the wind isn't blowing..... We are all up ship creek!


dnix71

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #16 on: December 17, 2017, 10:36:04 AM »
I live in south Florida and only know one person who owns a Tesla, a man I went to college with who is a successful lawyer. The people I work with can't even afford a new ICE car, let alone a plug-in electric. There is a public charge station a few miles away in a large shopping center that includes a super Walmart. I once saw a HUGE hybrid SUV plugged in there. I think it was a Chrysler Pacifica. My first thought was "that thing runs on batteries?" :o A quick internet search revealed it would go 35-40 miles on batteries alone.

My job is 16 miles away. Sideways and on the other side of the Turnpike. It takes over an hour to get home, maybe 45 minutes to get there early in the morning before rush hour begins. In the summer if you don't have a/c you risk passing out from the heat sitting in traffic. No a/c also means you can't see where you are going in the rain. Back when GM first tried battery only cars, a well known local newspaper editor got one on loan to try out. It was dark and raining that morning he borrowed it. He had to call for a tow after the batteries went dead from being forced to run the a/c to keep the windows clear. He never made it to work that morning.

My mother and sister live 275/250 miles away and 6 hours of driving. No battery only suv will meet my needs, not even a Tesla. I can barely afford a 20 year-old ICE Toyota. Even if I got a battery-only car for free I couldn't afford the extra insurance and taxes.
I rent a ground-level apartment with a 100 amp panel on the side of the building in a shared laundry room. My only recharge option would be a very slow charge with an extension cord.

In south Florida we regularly evacuate to avoid tropical storms, if you have only a limited range battery-only car, you are going die one day trying to leave and kill your family, too. Personally I think Indonesia with mopeds and tuk-tuks has the right idea.

SparWeb

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #17 on: December 17, 2017, 01:05:01 PM »
Hi Dnix,
It's been obvious all along that many all-electric cars are only meant for the luxury market.  The cheaper all-electrics that go down the market like the MiEV and Bolt look like shopping carts, and simply not an option for commuters with families.

It's really hard to tell how much sincere dedication there is on the part of Chrysler when a Pacifica (your example) is offered with a hybrid option "but" there's limited availability of those models, and it's treated as an "option" not the basic design.  This may just be to appease California.  As a hybrid, it won't leave folks stranded without a charge, but it also costs a lot more than the basic model.  This is typical of mini-vans and SUV's with hybrid options that have nothing to do with efficiency or conservation and everything to do with "keeping up with the Joneses".

The thing about hybrids - the credible ones, not the badge of convenience - is that they mix the technology to give you a better value.  You get a fuel tank that will carry you 300 miles, and a battery pack that will take you 40.

The all-electric cars will stick to the luxury market for quite a while, yet, I think.

Not sure why the conversation has been treating hybrids as the same as all-electrics.  Pretty sure everyone here knows the difference.
No one believes the theory except the one who developed it.  Everyone believes the experiment except the one who ran it.

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SparWeb

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #18 on: December 17, 2017, 01:07:55 PM »
Oh, one more impediment:
I went to the nearest Chevy dealer and asked them to show me a Volt.  They showed me the middle finger.
No one believes the theory except the one who developed it.  Everyone believes the experiment except the one who ran it.

System spec: 135w BP multicrystalline panels, regulated by Xantrex C40, DIY 8ft diameter wind turbine, regulated by Tri-Star TS60, 800AH x 24V AGM Battery, Xantrex SW4024

Simen

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #19 on: December 17, 2017, 02:42:00 PM »
I haven't bothered to chime in before now, because i guess Norway are in a unique situation when it comes to EV's. In excess of 98% of all power generated here are hydroelectric, and it's usually a surplus of it; the grid are solid, and power is cheap (avg. 0.04 US cent).

Edit;
And gasoline are not cheap - avg. $1.80-$2.00 for 1 liter.
/edit

The government has heavy intensives for EV's - no import-tax, no road-tax or road-toll, free parking, etc. It wont last, but people are buying ev's. ;)
There is a goal to have max 50 km between quick-charge stations along main roads around the whole country, and it's soon there - i have at least 20 QC-stations within 15 km of my home.
Close to 5% of all registered cars in Norway are EV's, and around 30% of new car sales are EV's.
There are talk of banning sales of new ICE cars from 2025 in Norway... (not confirmed...)

I myself has a 2013 leaf, and won't go back to ice. :) (I would like to have the new one with 40kWh bank, or the next year model with 60kWh, but... :) )

So - EV's do have a future; when everything are in place...
I will accept the rules that you feel necessary to your freedom. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do. - (R. A. Heinlein)

george65

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #20 on: December 17, 2017, 10:13:30 PM »
Oh, one more impediment:
I went to the nearest Chevy dealer and asked them to show me a Volt.  They showed me the middle finger.

Why?
Do they not want to sell them?

george65

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #21 on: December 17, 2017, 10:40:28 PM »
I Norway are in a unique situation when it comes to EV's. In excess of 98% of all power generated here are hydroelectric, and it's usually a surplus of it; the grid are solid, and power is cheap (avg. 0.04 US cent).

in countries like yours which I was aware of, EV's make sense.  You have a stable, reliable source of clean energy and plenty of it.
That makes power a valuable resource to you and one that should be utilised and taken advantage of.

Quote
There is a goal to have max 50 km between quick-charge stations along main roads around the whole country

hadn't thought of that aspect of it. Couldn't imagine having to recharge every 50KM! From what people are saying, that seems like about the range of most Ev's.  Probably ok for some people to go to work but obviously not very practical for the highway. 
As mentioned, add in aircon or heating in some places and that range would crash anyway.

there is a guy on YT who makes his own power walls and has a converted Kombi van. He built a battery trailer to give him extended range. While since I watched the vid but I think that gave him something like 300 Miles.

Quote
So - EV's do have a future; when everything are in place...

I think they have a future, how far off is the question.
There are still many hurdles to overcome.  Purchase price, range, charging, battery raw materials and competing technologies.  Not sure there are (m)any alternatives atm but by the time the ev's become affordable, practical as everyday, one car only offerings, who know what may have come along by then? Sure as hell WON'T be Hydrogen or plant based fuels I'm sure of that.

The other issue as we have both mentioned different ways is charging power.  Far as I'm aware there are few places in the world like your ( if any other's) that have either excess power generation or that level of clean generation.  For the rest of the world, most are struggling to keep the lights on now. Last thing the utilities and gubbermints will want is a new huge and power hungry technology to come along.

I'm quite certain the time frame to upgrade the grid will be far outstripped by the car makers ability to push Ev's onto the market at a price that will gain them wider acceptance.  the cost of upgrading the grids of the world will without be enormous and the backlast of paying for that will be the subject of much debate and grief no doubt.

I don't think very many people, especialy EV proponents have any kind of remote Idea the amount of power that would be needed to even migrate  10% of the private vehicle fleet to electric.  I'd put a lot of money down here to bet that just 2 EV's in every street here right now would kill the grid stone dead.
I don't see that changing while I'm still walking around.

The infrastructure upgrade needed to meet the demand for EV charging would be massive and no gubbermint or Utility is going to want to be responsible for forcing that cost on the public no matter how green and wonderful they can spin doctor it.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Simen

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Re: Chevy Volt (plug-in hybrid), + solar, + garage stationary batteries
« Reply #22 on: December 17, 2017, 11:53:55 PM »
There is a goal to have max 50 km between quick-charge stations along main roads around the whole country

hadn't thought of that aspect of it. Couldn't imagine having to recharge every 50KM! From what people are saying, that seems like about the range of most Ev's.  Probably ok for some people to go to work but obviously not very practical for the highway. 
As mentioned, add in aircon or heating in some places and that range would crash anyway.

The average range of most of the smaller EV's here are around 90-130 km; most of the newer models have a range in excess of 200-250 km (several have 400-500 km +).
It's only in rural places the distance between 2 qc's are close to 50 km; along the main roads between cities, you seldom drive more than 20 km before you see one.
Aircon and heating doesn't take away more than 5-15 km driving distance on one full charge.
The 50 km range you have heard about, are probably the electric-only range of hybrids... :)

A trip for me from my home to the capital, Oslo would be 240 km, and i usually drive for 100 km, charge for 20 minutes, drive 70 km, charge for another 15-20 minutes, and reach my goal with some power to spare (to avoid driving-distance-anxiety :P ). (My 4 year old Leaf goes 120 km with light aircon/heat use, on 100% charge.) I could make the trip with only one, longer QC, but we pay QC per minute, and the 80-100% charge goes much slower than the first 80%...

People who use their EV to work, usually park their car at a 'slow-charge' parking lot (which are plentiful here) , which provides 3.6 kW each hour, and are usually free. Semi-QC (up to 22 kWh) are also plentiful, and cheaper than QC's (which are normally 50 kWh).
Work on Super-QC stations are starting now (for other brands than Tesla), and should deliver 150 kWh. The new Leaf should support this, and probably other new brands/models...

I do see your point on power grid - and power sources in most of the other countries in the world; i guess we're just lucky here... ;)
I will accept the rules that you feel necessary to your freedom. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do. - (R. A. Heinlein)