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Electric Cars and Types of Driving
Old 07-03-2019, 03:22 AM   #1
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Electric Cars and Types of Driving

Recently, I mentioned the drop in our car's gas mileage, and my fears for the engine's health, since we moved to Florida and no longer have any high-speed distance driving to do. Instead, the car either sits in the garage or is forced to do short trips involving lots of lower-speed, stop-and-go driving. This is defined by the manufacturer as "severe driving conditions."

We are trying to come up with excuses to get out on the turnpike in order to give the car a good run.

Are "types of driving" a concern for electric vehicles? We are starting to think about a new car.
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Old 07-03-2019, 04:01 AM   #2
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I have a prius and really have not considered types of driving. I just use it when I need to. mostly city, some highway, but in any case if I had to worry about using it for certain kinds of driving I would look elsewhere. it has been one of the most problem free cars I have owned.
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Old 07-03-2019, 04:27 AM   #3
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I don’t have an EV, but I don’t think there are any typical types of driving that present an issue. However, range and recharging make long distance travel (anything beyond the safe range, typically from 100 to 300+ miles depending on make-model) a limiting factor. An EV is probably ideal for “no longer have any high-speed distance driving to do. Instead, the car either sits in the garage or is forced to do short trips involving lots of lower-speed, stop-and-go driving.” You may also want to consider a home (quick) charging station which can be a significant expense.
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Old 07-03-2019, 04:53 AM   #4
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Well, that could be an issue. We only have one car, and occasion for long distance trips will arise. Just not often enough to keep a gas engine healthy.
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Old 07-03-2019, 05:08 AM   #5
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Well, that could be an issue. We only have one car, and occasion for long distance trips will arise. Just not often enough to keep a gas engine healthy.
How about renting a car for any long distance trips?
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Old 07-03-2019, 05:30 AM   #6
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A dance friend was having car problems (kind of stuttering when trying to accelerate) and as I and another person suggested she got a can of fuel injector cleaner to add to her gas as well as changing gas station to a name brand ( in case water in their underground tank at her cut rate place, and yes I know few are like that now) as well as upping to a mid octane gas for a tank or two.

For what ever reason that fixed the car she was going to trade in because of that problem.
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Old 07-03-2019, 06:24 AM   #7
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I live in a harsh winter climate where people routinely start their car when it's -25 to -35 and drive 2 or 3 miles to work and their cars last just as long as anywhere else, so I would guess that your concerns may not be necessary.

My suggestion for a lot of short trips is to take a longer one every now and then and to possibly consider a battery tender...they are inexpensive ($30 - $50) and will keep the battery fully charged since repeated short trips are not enough to recharge the battery.
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Old 07-03-2019, 06:40 AM   #8
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That's true, the "severe driving conditions" designation doesn't mean you're going to ruin your car. It does suggest you go on an accelerated maintenance schedule.

I put a battery tender on my Miata because I put in an aftermarket stereo head unit that has a slow drain. Maybe I connected it wrong, but it could run down over winter anyway. It works great, but partly because the battery is in the trunk which is easier to access than the hood. I keep the positive cable always connected and when charging clamp the ground to my trunk latch, and then connect the harness to the wall charger. It stays in my garage so I keep the trunk lid ajar. When driving I unhook the harness and drop the ground clamp into the trunk. I wouldn't want to pop the hood every time I drove, but maybe it could be permanently connected to the battery with the harness end sticking out very slightly for access without opening the hood. I got this one https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B010NRKERI.
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Old 07-03-2019, 06:52 AM   #9
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When driving I unhook the harness and drop the ground clamp into the trunk. I wouldn't want to pop the hood every time I drove, but maybe it could be permanently connected to the battery with the harness end sticking out very slightly for access without opening the hood. I got this one https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B010NRKERI.
I keep permanently mine attached in winter...those ring clips fit on the bolts that connect to the battery terminals. That allows me to use the heated seats and steering wheel all the time without fear of draining the battery. It comes out under the hood next to the block heater cord so it's no bother to plug both in when parking.

In summer I put it on my riding mower as it has a tendency to drain the battery.
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Old 07-03-2019, 07:34 AM   #10
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I would not worry about it at all. As you said, it may be severe driving, but that just means a somewhat different maintenance schedule. I have to believe a little extra maintenance is cheaper than getting an electric car, especially if you get a charger installed. Personally, I wouldn’t even worry about the battery tender. It certainly wouldn’t hurt, but a new battery every 3 to 5 years isn’t that big of a deal and, it may not even effect your battery. You’re driving slow and stop & go, but that doesn’t mean the engine isn’t running long enough to charge the battery.

I did some searching, but could not find any authoritative write up on this issue. Seems a lot of opinion, but little facts. Seemed to be some consensus on the battery possibility not charging enough and changing the oil more frequently.
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Old 07-03-2019, 07:45 AM   #11
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Old 07-03-2019, 07:50 AM   #12
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A possibility, although we'd have to take Uber or a taxi to and from the rental places. Most are at least 10 miles from our house.

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How about renting a car for any long distance trips?
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Old 07-03-2019, 07:56 AM   #13
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Funny, my Dad never called it that, and he loved ethnic references and jokes.

But that is indeed what Dad advised for cars that were not being driven regularly at highway speeds.

We're trying to compensate with more-frequent, full-synthetic oil changes. But I think spending a few bucks now and then, driving the turnpike, is also called for.

Have been looking for an excuse to get an electric car for a while, but that range issue is daunting. Wonder if that will ever improve.

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Old 07-03-2019, 08:02 AM   #14
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Have been looking for an excuse to get an electric car for a while, but that range issue is daunting. Wonder if that will ever improve.
What is your thoughts on "acceptable range" between charging cycles? That will set the basis for what EV may be appropriate to look at.
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Old 07-03-2019, 09:01 AM   #15
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..........Are "types of driving" a concern for electric vehicles? We are starting to think about a new car.
I'd be concerned about leaving an electric car parked for months and months, though I'm not sure where the cut off point would be.
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Old 07-03-2019, 09:30 AM   #16
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I'd be concerned about leaving an electric car parked for months and months, though I'm not sure where the cut off point would be.


Your concern is somewhat valid, but not for the drive battery. It is the 12v starter battery that will lose charge if left to sit for months and months. My Leaf has a built in “battery minder”, if you will, that will recharge the 12v battery if 5 days has elapsed since the last drive or charge session. However, just like ICE vehicles, I believe there is a protocol to disconnect the 12v battery for extended storage. A month though is not a problem, in my experience.
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Old 07-03-2019, 09:45 AM   #17
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Well, we do drive most days of the week. Just not more than about 10 miles from the house, and all in traffic/stoplights.

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I'd be concerned about leaving an electric car parked for months and months, though I'm not sure where the cut off point would be.
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Old 07-03-2019, 09:46 AM   #18
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I would think the same as a gas vehicle - about 400 miles. I realize that different conditions (using the a/c, especially) will bring down the range. Since a/c is practically mandatory in FL, it is a consideration.

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What is your thoughts on "acceptable range" between charging cycles? That will set the basis for what EV may be appropriate to look at.
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Old 07-03-2019, 09:50 AM   #19
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What is your thoughts on "acceptable range" between charging cycles? That will set the basis for what EV may be appropriate to look at.

+1

I think the above is good advice. FWIW, the chart in the attached article shows the total number of EV's delivered in the USA for each maker through May 2019.

https://insideevs.com/news/352626/ev...card-may-2019/

Here's a chart for world wide sales through April 2019

https://insideevs.com/news/352430/gl...es-april-2019/
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Old 07-03-2019, 10:35 AM   #20
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How about renting a car for any long distance trips?
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A possibility, although we'd have to take Uber or a taxi to and from the rental places. Most are at least 10 miles from our house.
Most EVs should be able to make that short trip. Perhaps golf carts also can go that far. You can get lithium batteries for the cart to be sure.

And speaking of golf carts, you live in Florida now, right?
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