April 2023. California.
Part 5 of my 5-year review on the Model 3
Charging at home: I charge my EV in the garage each night. I’ve used 2 approaches for daily charging over the last 5 years. And for those new to EVs, I don’t sit around waiting for my car to charge, it charges during the night while I’m sleeping. I wake up with the car ready for the day ahead of us.
1) For the first 2 or 3 years I had my charge limit set at 60% for daily driving and scheduled charging to start at 3AM when electricity prices were low. I charge on a 30 Amp clothes dryer outlet and about 2 hours of charging would get the car back to 60% SOC each night.
2) Before going on road trips I’d set the charge limit at 90% to make use of the range we’d need to reach our destinations. After getting back from one of our trips I forgot to reset the SOC and have kept the charge limit at 90% the past 2 years. I don’t need the range of a 90% charge for daily driving – in fact I prefer keeping my battery at a lower SOC in the hopes it increases longevity – less time at higher voltage for the cells. So what I do now is charge for 2 hours before leaving for work. I scheduled the car to start charging at 6AM, and I get 2 hours of charging before I leave at 8AM. That adds about 45 miles to the pack which is almost enough for the day. My SOC drifts lower as the week goes on but I drive less on weekends so my SOC gets higher and I start the work week Monday morning with decent range. Note: There are many ways to approach daily charging, this is what works for me.
Road Trips: First thing I do for road trips is plan my charging stops using ABetterRoutePlanner. Great resource, check it out. On long road trips I average about 150 miles between Supercharging stops and a little over 20 minutes charging time per stop. I use the stops to grab a bite to eat or stretch my legs. At each Supercharger I usually charge up to the distance of the next leg plus 100 miles. That extra 100 miles in the pack doesn’t give me the fastest charging times but it does give me added flexibility in case of unplanned detours. I’ve done road trips alone and with the family – in one case covering 800 miles in a day with the whole family on board and it worked out well.
DC charging on road trips using Tesla’s Supercharger network is dead simple. Park, plug, grab a cup of coffee, and soon after get back on the road refreshed. The Supercharger network was the #1 reason I ordered the Model 3. The range of the Model 3 combined with the Supercharging network has allowed to visit a number of places we’d been wanting to visit – all while driving a low emission vehicle.
This is Part 5 of my 5-year review. The review is broken up into short posts on different aspects of owning the Model 3. Additional posts will be linked below as they go live. Topics covered include:
This morning I saw a Lucid Air driving along Rt 80 in central California. This was the first time I’d seen on in person and I got a pretty good look at the exterior design and a bit of the interior as I drove alongside for several miles.
Five years ago we drove our Rav4 EV to Monterey to cool off and visit the aquarium. We’d added QC Charge‘s JdeMO DC charging port to our Rav, which greatly reduced charging time and made the trip doable. The kids got to see the Monterey Bay Aquarium and other landmark buildings in the area. Great trip, and all electric thanks to QC Charge.
This spring we drove to the Grand Canyon to get outdoors and to get a break from virtual schooling during our children’s spring vacation. This post is a ‘road trip primer’ for those considering an EV and is another example to demonstrate that electric cars work well for families.
Emissions from producing electricity for the U.S. grid have been steadily dropping. This has resulted from long-term trends of more renewable and cleaner burning sources of energy used to produce electricity. One upshot of this: EVs are cleaner than gas-powered cars, and keep getting cleaner.
December 2020. California and the American Southwest.
The driving range of electric cars on the market today can easily meet the daily driving needs for the average person. In my case I charge my Model 3 for about 2 hours every night in the garage for daily driving. But what about charging an electric car on longer drives and road trips?
Last night I received the 2019.24.4 software update for our Model 3. So this morning I tested Tesla’s CHAdeMO adapter to determine the rate of charge, and see how many miles I’d get and how long it would take to charge from a given SOC. Summary: 45 minutes gave me 139 miles of rated range and cost $8.69. Tesla’s CHAdeMO adapter is easy to use and provides more charging options for the Model 3.
Since getting our first electric car 5 years ago we’ve taken our EV on summer road trips. Last week we took our first road trip in our Model 3. How was it? We saw some great sites, interesting history, and beautiful vistas. Continue reading →
In one respect charging an electric car is no different than filling a gas tank: it’s all about storing energy in the car to power its motor. We use electricity every day to power and charge all kinds of devices: phones, computers, shavers, televisions etc. But since driving an electric powered car is still a new idea for many people, it might help to be familiar with the terms you’ll be using, so we’ll cover that first. Continue reading →
In July 2016 we took our 2012 Rav4 EV, equipped with JdeMO, on a 400 mile road trip to Monterey. (This post was also published at InsideEVs.com, read it here). In July 2021 we made the same trip in our Model Y – I compare the recent trip with the 2016 trip here: To Monterey in an EV: Then and Now.