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Are supercharging road trips time consuming?

I suspect they would know it if they had one, but who knows...maybe there is an old outlet in their garage that they have no idea what it is.

Another solution is to use a Quick220 type device (Quick220 Electrical Systems). With these kinds of devices, the idea is that you plug into two different 120V outlets on different phases (you will very likely need a heavy duty extension cord for one of them) that can be combined to provide a 240V supply (albeit only at 15A, so only 3.6kW, but still enough to get 10-15 miles per hour of range, so over 100 miles overnight). These devices are a bit pricey for what they actually are (you could essentially do the same by "splicing" two extension cords together, but it may not be the safest solution), but they can provide a relatively inexpensive solution when visiting those that don't have 240V outlets.
I have a Quick 220 and it never gets used. It can't be used for GFCI (which is disclosed). But the problem is that many new houses have GFCI on the breaker; that's not really disclosed. So Quick220 can only really be used in older homes.
 
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My wife and I just completed a long road trip in a M3LR from our home near Minneapolis to Seattle via Boulder Colorado and back.
The TL/DR version: Added less than an hour vs ICE each full day of driving, using hotel chargers helps, having the CCS adapter paid off.

We left after work on a Thursday with the car at 99% and made it to the Sioux City IA SC which is next to a Holiday Inn. We plugged
in and checked into the hotel. When the car hit 90% about 30 minutes later I went down and moved it. The next morning I plugged it
back in before eating breakfast in the hotel and the car hit 100% just as we were ready to go. From there we drove to the SC in
Kearney NE which is in the parking lot of a Runza restaurant so we went in to eat lunch (we were both unimpressed with the
food). I unplugged as soon as we got back to the car and we proceeded to Ogallala NE. This one is in the lot of a hotel and was
the first stop where we waited around while charging, but it gave me time to catch up on emails and the like. Spent 13 minutes there
before moving on. At the next SC in Brush CO we went into the service station to use the restroom and browse for some snacks. We
had 96 miles to the hotel at this point so we waited just a few minutes more after getting back to the car.

We stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn in Broomfield CO for two nights which has multiple destination chargers. Friday night I charged
overnight to 90% which was ample for driving around Saturday. Saturday night again to 90% but Sunday morning raised the limit
to 100% from the app while still in the hotel room and we left with 98% about 40 minutes later. First stop Sunday was Laramie WY
where again after using the restroom we waited a bit before moving on. This sequence was repeated at Rawlins WY, Rock Springs WY and
Evanston WY with 5-10 minutes spent waiting at the car although in Rawlins we spent that time eating lunch. We intended to make our
last SC stop of the day in Trementon UT but the nav indicated there was a wait so we went to the Electrify America station in Perry UT
instead. I plugged in there with the CCS adapter I bought from South Korea earlier in the year and it started charging before I
got the EA app open to start it, turns out it was a free session. By the time we used the restroom and bought some chips in Walmart
we had enough charge to get to the Fairfield Inn in Burley ID where we plugged into one of the three destination chargers there.

Monday morning I again raised the charge limit from inside the hotel and after eating breakfast we left at 100%. First SC stop was
Ontario OR where we went into a coffee shop for another restroom break and some java. Waited just a couple minutes before heading to
Pendelton OR. Despite the nav showing one open charger there was a line of 3 cars waiting - turns out a model X was parked poorly
making one of the pedestals unreachable. We were at 13% but I figured that would be enough to get to the EA location in Hermiston OR
so we went there rather than wait. Once again the EA session was free, and we spent the time eating lunch, chatting and sharing cat pictures
with a BMW i3 driver. We stayed there longer than I had planned so we had to make just one more stop at Cle Elum WA for about 10 minutes
before continuing on to Seattle WA.

Fast forward to Saturday afternoon. Leaving a friend's house in Tacoma WA I had intended to stop at the SC in Auburn WA but the nav
showed a wait so once again hit up a nearby EA locaiton and once again no cost :). Hit up the SC in Ellensburg WA while we ate fast
food and on to the Hampton Inn Spokane with their 2 destination chargers.

Sunday morning as before charged to 100% while eating breakfast and drove to Missoula MT. I decided to go to the EA chargers in Missoula
and Butte and spent more time than I needed to at both because I didn't know when the free juice promo might suddenly come to an end.
Still free sessions at both, too bad there were no more EA locations the rest of the route home. Stopped at Big Timber MT SC just long
enough to use the bathroom then spent the time at the Billings SC eating dinner. Billings is a site that could use an expansion as it's an
older 4 stall V2 location and when headed East it's 150 miles to the next SC in Miles City with 80mph speed limits. Sharing a cabinet here
would result in a very long charge with nothing but a hotel lobby nearby, fortunately we were the only ones there. Stopped for 7 minutes
at the Miles City MT SC and headed to the Holiday Inn Express in Glendive MT with a SC in the hotel parking lot. The Glendive SC site is
prone to flooding and it had been raining, half the pedestal's parking spots were under water. Fortunately it was also empty when we
arrived.

Monday morning I once again plugged the car in before going back in to eat breakfast. This turned out to be a mistake as I didn't realize that SC was billed by the minute and not by the kWh so I ended up paying about $9 for just 8kWh to get from 90% to 100% when I didn't need to. Don't top off to 100% at by the minute SCs unless you have no other option. First charge stop was Billings ND where a Tesla tech was working on one of the pedestals. We chatted with him for several minutes before heading for the Jamestown ND SC where we charged as we ate lunch. Stopped at the Fargo ND SC again just long enough to use the bathroom then on to the Alexandria MN SC where we did some shopping in Target. When we got back to the car we had more than enough charge to get home.

All the SCs from Miles City to Alexandria (including Dickinson ND which we skipped) are V3 250kW max and if you arrive with ~10% charge with a preconditioned battery you can be on your way to next one after about 10 minutes as they are all about 100 miles apart. Obviously you would need to charge longer if you drove this route in winter but the weather was warm this day.

Overall I think we spent less than an hour more on the road each full day of driving than we would have if we did the same trip in an ICE. About the only other advantages would be eating meals in restaurants instead of in the car at the superchargers, and not needing to plan where the next stop will be when filling up. Road trips in both the MYLR and M3LR are really quite easy as long as the temperatures aren't bitter cold and you are sticking to major highways like interstates. Still not ultimately as fast or as much fexibility as an ICE, but if you can combine food and bathroom breaks with charging the difference isn't too much IMHO. The one thing that could derail a Tesla road trip is having to wait at SCs which I fear is going to be a growing problem with the number of Teslas on the road growing quickly. Having the CCS adapter helped a ton on this trip.
I just skimmed your detailed list, but it looks positive. We jsut came home from a much shorter road trip--one super charger stop in Farmington, NM to get from 38 % to 90 some in 30 minutes. Plus, a 3 1/2 hour free charge at Mesa VerdeNP at Far View lodge with a Tesla level 2 charger. A Hyundai Ionic 5 was charging next to us on a different brand of charger., Coming home, we stopped agin at Farmington and got enough juice to get us back to Santa Fe with 15% . Good experience over all!!
 
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I'm trying to convince my friend to adopt the EV lifestyle. It is cumbersome for roadtrips, and going to cities like Phoenix AZ that only have 5 superchargers in the entire area. Where that same area, probably be like 20-30 superchargers in So Cal.

I'm hoping in 10 years, especially in 2035 when CA bans gas cars, that charging will be more stream line.
Whoa!! that sounds like alot of chargers.But, yes, it is a different head set than having a gas station on every corner.But so far, we have not found the charging issue to be that limiting g. On a daily basis, we charge at home. On our recent road trip from Santa Fe to Mesa VerdeNP, we used the Farmington Supercharger and then the free park charger at Far View Lodge. This is our second charging experience at a National Park--the Grand Canyon has chargers available also. It's just a different headset and a more mindful approach to travel. You have tot do a bit more planning,. But , it is getting better all of the time. I think the Ford Lightning will make a huge difference in folks' attitude.
 
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My pattern is similar, but I got tired of looking for hotels that are reasonably priced, please my wife, AND have L2 - plus the chargers were sometimes blocked/broken anyway. My wife also needs/wants more stops (she loves tea and has a 200-mile bladder). So we aim for something more like this:

Wake up, take off.
Have breakfast at the first supercharger in the morning. Leave when done eating.
At the second supercharger (mid-morning), my wife uses the restroom and gets a cup of tea. Obviously we don't charge until full, but no need because...
Third supercharger is lunch. Leave when done eating.
Fourth (mid-afternoon) is another pee/tea break.
Fifth is dinner.

When the supercharger spacing is good, we can travel 800 miles a day and NEVER wait for the car to charge...I often find myself waiting for my wife instead. Of course the spacing isn't always quite right, so sometimes we do wait a bit. But we usually welcome the break. It's far better than visiting gas stations year-round!

If you eat in the car and have a 400-mile bladder, you might find yourself doing more waiting for the car. But my wife refused to travel that way even in a gas car, so driving electric is no penalty at all for us.
I like your wife's style.Say Hi for me, please.I agree with her. My bladder has about the same range and we try not to hurry anymore--at 76, you need to "smell the coffee"--or tea!
 
My wife and I just completed a long road trip in a M3LR from our home near Minneapolis to Seattle via Boulder Colorado and back.
The TL/DR version: Added less than an hour vs ICE each full day of driving, using hotel chargers helps, having the CCS adapter paid off.

We left after work on a Thursday with the car at 99% and made it to the Sioux City IA SC which is next to a Holiday Inn. We plugged
in and checked into the hotel. When the car hit 90% about 30 minutes later I went down and moved it. The next morning I plugged it
back in before eating breakfast in the hotel and the car hit 100% just as we were ready to go. From there we drove to the SC in
Kearney NE which is in the parking lot of a Runza restaurant so we went in to eat lunch (we were both unimpressed with the
food). I unplugged as soon as we got back to the car and we proceeded to Ogallala NE. This one is in the lot of a hotel and was
the first stop where we waited around while charging, but it gave me time to catch up on emails and the like. Spent 13 minutes there
before moving on. At the next SC in Brush CO we went into the service station to use the restroom and browse for some snacks. We
had 96 miles to the hotel at this point so we waited just a few minutes more after getting back to the car.

We stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn in Broomfield CO for two nights which has multiple destination chargers. Friday night I charged
overnight to 90% which was ample for driving around Saturday. Saturday night again to 90% but Sunday morning raised the limit
to 100% from the app while still in the hotel room and we left with 98% about 40 minutes later. First stop Sunday was Laramie WY
where again after using the restroom we waited a bit before moving on. This sequence was repeated at Rawlins WY, Rock Springs WY and
Evanston WY with 5-10 minutes spent waiting at the car although in Rawlins we spent that time eating lunch. We intended to make our
last SC stop of the day in Trementon UT but the nav indicated there was a wait so we went to the Electrify America station in Perry UT
instead. I plugged in there with the CCS adapter I bought from South Korea earlier in the year and it started charging before I
got the EA app open to start it, turns out it was a free session. By the time we used the restroom and bought some chips in Walmart
we had enough charge to get to the Fairfield Inn in Burley ID where we plugged into one of the three destination chargers there.

Monday morning I again raised the charge limit from inside the hotel and after eating breakfast we left at 100%. First SC stop was
Ontario OR where we went into a coffee shop for another restroom break and some java. Waited just a couple minutes before heading to
Pendelton OR. Despite the nav showing one open charger there was a line of 3 cars waiting - turns out a model X was parked poorly
making one of the pedestals unreachable. We were at 13% but I figured that would be enough to get to the EA location in Hermiston OR
so we went there rather than wait. Once again the EA session was free, and we spent the time eating lunch, chatting and sharing cat pictures
with a BMW i3 driver. We stayed there longer than I had planned so we had to make just one more stop at Cle Elum WA for about 10 minutes
before continuing on to Seattle WA.

Fast forward to Saturday afternoon. Leaving a friend's house in Tacoma WA I had intended to stop at the SC in Auburn WA but the nav
showed a wait so once again hit up a nearby EA locaiton and once again no cost :). Hit up the SC in Ellensburg WA while we ate fast
food and on to the Hampton Inn Spokane with their 2 destination chargers.

Sunday morning as before charged to 100% while eating breakfast and drove to Missoula MT. I decided to go to the EA chargers in Missoula
and Butte and spent more time than I needed to at both because I didn't know when the free juice promo might suddenly come to an end.
Still free sessions at both, too bad there were no more EA locations the rest of the route home. Stopped at Big Timber MT SC just long
enough to use the bathroom then spent the time at the Billings SC eating dinner. Billings is a site that could use an expansion as it's an
older 4 stall V2 location and when headed East it's 150 miles to the next SC in Miles City with 80mph speed limits. Sharing a cabinet here
would result in a very long charge with nothing but a hotel lobby nearby, fortunately we were the only ones there. Stopped for 7 minutes
at the Miles City MT SC and headed to the Holiday Inn Express in Glendive MT with a SC in the hotel parking lot. The Glendive SC site is
prone to flooding and it had been raining, half the pedestal's parking spots were under water. Fortunately it was also empty when we
arrived.

Monday morning I once again plugged the car in before going back in to eat breakfast. This turned out to be a mistake as I didn't realize that SC was billed by the minute and not by the kWh so I ended up paying about $9 for just 8kWh to get from 90% to 100% when I didn't need to. Don't top off to 100% at by the minute SCs unless you have no other option. First charge stop was Billings ND where a Tesla tech was working on one of the pedestals. We chatted with him for several minutes before heading for the Jamestown ND SC where we charged as we ate lunch. Stopped at the Fargo ND SC again just long enough to use the bathroom then on to the Alexandria MN SC where we did some shopping in Target. When we got back to the car we had more than enough charge to get home.

All the SCs from Miles City to Alexandria (including Dickinson ND which we skipped) are V3 250kW max and if you arrive with ~10% charge with a preconditioned battery you can be on your way to next one after about 10 minutes as they are all about 100 miles apart. Obviously you would need to charge longer if you drove this route in winter but the weather was warm this day.

Overall I think we spent less than an hour more on the road each full day of driving than we would have if we did the same trip in an ICE. About the only other advantages would be eating meals in restaurants instead of in the car at the superchargers, and not needing to plan where the next stop will be when filling up. Road trips in both the MYLR and M3LR are really quite easy as long as the temperatures aren't bitter cold and you are sticking to major highways like interstates. Still not ultimately as fast or as much fexibility as an ICE, but if you can combine food and bathroom breaks with charging the difference isn't too much IMHO. The one thing that could derail a Tesla road trip is having to wait at SCs which I fear is going to be a growing problem with the number of Teslas on the road growing quickly. Having the CCS adapter helped a ton on this trip.
Where did you buy your CCS adapter?
 
That ratio of driving to charging time sounds about right, particularly if you've got an older Model S or X or an SR Model 3. Longer-range cars, of course, enable longer drive times and can also charge a little bit faster compared to shorter-range variants of the same model and age.

Every reputable source I've ever consulted on this issue recommends driving for no more than about two hours between stops, and resting for at least fifteen minutes at these stops, for safety reasons. (For instance, this site offers this recommendation.) Thus, your experience sounds like a good one from a safety point of view. That said, if you're driving with multiple people, you might be able to cut down on the stop time by swapping drivers at stops, assuming you have the range. OTOH, even a bathroom break would be likely to take at least 5-10 minutes, so stopping for 15 minutes to charge while you use the facilities shouldn't be that big of a hardship.

You shouldn't need to wait one hour to charge at a Supercharger.

If you're planning to stay in a hotel overnight, consult PlugShare to locate hotels with on-site level 2 (J1772 or Tesla) EVSEs. PlugShare has filter options so that you can find charging near lodging. Hotels with EVSEs are becoming increasingly common, and they can help on long road trips; you can pull in with close to no charge and have a full charge when you depart in the morning. Be sure to check the PlugShare rating so as to minimize the risk of hitting a hotel with unreliable EVSEs. You might even consider calling them ahead of time to be sure their EVSEs are working; some might even let you reserve an EVSE parking spot. If you can't find a hotel with a level 2 EVSE, and if you're traveling in the winter, stop at a Supercharger as close to the hotel before stopping for the night. This will enable you to charge when the battery is still warm; if it cools down overnight, it might not be at optimal charging temperature to charge in the morning.

I'd suggest relying on the Tesla's navigation system and/or A Better Routeplanner. Aside from overnight stays, level 2 charging is not likely to be very useful on a road trip; you just can't add enough range in a stop of an hour or less to make it worth the bother of locating the EVSE. Tesla's navigation tools, though, will direct you to Superchargers along your route, so you don't need to find charging options in some other way.

I've done several road trips in my own 2019 Model 3 LR RWD and I've never had problems with charging. That said, I live in Rhode Island, and my road trips have never taken me further than Cincinnati, so I'm not familiar with the areas where you're traveling. I have written a couple of Web pages documenting my experiences:
The 2 hour stop suggestion was one that would pop up on our Subaru back when we drove it on long trips. I thought it was an excellent suggestion! I did a longer spell on our trip to Mesa Verde and it was a bit wearing...
 
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bradtem

Robocar consultant
Dec 18, 2018
932
1,064
Sunnyvale, CA
The 2 hour stop suggestion was one that would pop up on our Subaru back when we drove it on long trips. I thought it was an excellent suggestion! I did a longer spell on our trip to Mesa Verde and it was a bit wearing...
It is, but people still do it. There are (at least) two types of road trippers. There are ones who just want to get somewhere, who will have an unpleasant drive with not enough rest, and they cling to the gasoline model of stopping for 10 minutes every 500 miles, plus pee breaks. It is not easy to satisfy them with electric today. For the others, who are on a road trip where the journey is the reward, it's very easy to do electric and not have it be a compromise, and it will get easier.
 
It is, but people still do it. There are (at least) two types of road trippers. There are ones who just want to get somewhere, who will have an unpleasant drive with not enough rest, and they cling to the gasoline model of stopping for 10 minutes every 500 miles, plus pee breaks. It is not easy to satisfy them with electric today. For the others, who are on a road trip where the journey is the reward, it's very easy to do electric and not have it be a compromise, and it will get easier.
We are both 76 so cannot do that 500miles before a stop. I actually like the model of stopping about every 2 hours or so. Got to the bathroom, get something to eat, move around some.
 
This is an interesting discussion. For me, a road trip is about getting to my destination. I prefer to get there as fast as possible. My last road trip was from New York to Florida (and back) and the drive took 16 hours covering more than 1100 miles in my Audi only stopping for gas and to eat & hit the restrooms.

There's just no way I could possibly come close to matching that time in an EV today. I hope we get there some day with longer ranges and shorter charging times.
 

Earl

Member
Jan 22, 2014
801
1,152
USA
This is an interesting discussion. For me, a road trip is about getting to my destination. I prefer to get there as fast as possible. My last road trip was from New York to Florida (and back) and the drive took 16 hours covering more than 1100 miles in my Audi only stopping for gas and to eat & hit the restrooms.

There's just no way I could possibly come close to matching that time in an EV today. I hope we get there some day with longer ranges and shorter charging times.
That is perfectly possible with an EV. I've done 1100 miles in our Model 3 a couple of days on a 3-day trip from Hampton Roads, Virginia to Los Angeles.
One can charge while eating and using the restrooms so it takes very little additional time (maybe an hour more overall. One needs to 'splash and dash' at the chargers, targeting arrival at less than about 10 miles of range, leaving the charger when the charging speed drops below about 75 MPH, and driving 'like you stole it'.
The only 'macho ICE driver who doesn't stop' that significantly beats an EV is the one who pees in a bottle and eats sandwiches from a cooler (next to the bottle), only stopping for gas.
 

srs5694

Active Member
Jan 15, 2019
1,622
2,180
Woonsocket, RI
That is perfectly possible with an EV. I've done 1100 miles in our Model 3 a couple of days on a 3-day trip from Hampton Roads, Virginia to Los Angeles.
One can charge while eating and using the restrooms so it takes very little additional time (maybe an hour more overall. One needs to 'splash and dash' at the chargers, targeting arrival at less than about 10 miles of range, leaving the charger when the charging speed drops below about 75 MPH, and driving 'like you stole it'.
The only 'macho ICE driver who doesn't stop' that significantly beats an EV is the one who pees in a bottle and eats sandwiches from a cooler (next to the bottle), only stopping for gas.
I generally agree with this, with the proper EV and in typical conditions. A Tesla Model 3 is a pretty optimal road-trip EV, among the current range of offerings. Doing a road trip in a Nissan Leaf would be a very different experience. Even among Teslas, a Model X, being less energy-efficient, would require more charging time than a Model 3.

Driving conditions also affect energy efficiency, and therefore the necessary charging time for a trip. Speeding, especially in states where the speed limit is high, will reduce energy efficiency; as will low temperatures, driving uphill, driving into the wind, etc. Add enough of these factors together and it may be enough to slow down somebody who's trying to get somewhere very quickly, even if not to the extent of eating and peeing while driving.

IMHO, most people, on most routes in the United States, can do a road trip in a handful of highly road-trippable EVs as quickly as they could do the same trip in an ICE vehicle. I'm talking here about real-world road trips, though, not "cannonball runs"; and of course doing this requires some knowledge of how to do it properly (e.g., charging while eating, using the best chargers, not DC fast charging to too high an SoC, etc.). A lot of EVs aren't up to this standard because of low energy efficiency and/or suboptimal DC fast charging capabilities; but there's been a lot of improvement in the overall field in just the last two or three years, and no doubt there will be more in the next few years. Infrastructure improvements (more and better DC fast chargers) will also help in some geographic areas.
 
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That is perfectly possible with an EV. I've done 1100 miles in our Model 3 a couple of days on a 3-day trip from Hampton Roads, Virginia to Los Angeles.
One can charge while eating and using the restrooms so it takes very little additional time (maybe an hour more overall. One needs to 'splash and dash' at the chargers, targeting arrival at less than about 10 miles of range, leaving the charger when the charging speed drops below about 75 MPH, and driving 'like you stole it'.
The only 'macho ICE driver who doesn't stop' that significantly beats an EV is the one who pees in a bottle and eats sandwiches from a cooler (next to the bottle), only stopping for gas.

Sorry, but I don't agree at all. I've mad a similar trip with my cousin in his M3 LR and it took MUCH longer.
 

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