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California to Virginia in my S60! Advice/tips? Specifically owners near I-70 & I-64

Discussion in 'North America' started by DieAbetic, Dec 15, 2014.

  1. DieAbetic

    DieAbetic Member

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    Hello everyone,

    I leave later this week for a trip from Los Angeles to Virginia in my S60! Quite excited, but also nervous of course. I have snow chains, and although I have all-season tires I think I'll have the service center put on winter tires just to be safe.

    I have looked through this thread for some great tips: How to Go Cross Country - Your Advice, Summarized | Forums | Tesla Motors

    Right now the plan is to take superchargers all the way from CA to Kansas, then continue using destination chargers and plugshare (with maybe a jump up to IL/ID if need be) to make it over to Virginia.

    If anyone lives near (with HPWC), or knows of fast chargers on I-70 (near Columbia, MO) or I-64 (between St. Louis and Louisville, and between Louisville and Virginia) please let me know. Right now I have to plan for a couple RV park 4-5+ hour charges.

    Any other suggestions/tips or warnings about the route would be great.

    Thanks
     
  2. SamT

    SamT Member

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    I was thinking taking the same route to avoid the upper states where slow a problem, I checked plugshare, some of the RV parks might be closed for the winter, call ahead.
     
  3. JohnQ

    JohnQ Active Member

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    I think if you do the math it will be faster to take the northern tier on the supercharger route rather than linking slow chargers on the I-70 route. Even with the threat of snow it would likely still work out better.
     
  4. ZBB

    ZBB Emperor

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    We did a 4,250 mile road trip in our 60 last summer -- Phoenix to BC and back...

    At the time, the Indio Supercharger was not yet open, so we had a 4+ hour charge stop at the Tesla Service Center near Palm Springs. If you go off the Supercharger highway, be sure to slow your driving speed down -- you will use less energy and therefore need less time at a slow charger.

    For example, we drove the speed limit from Quartzsite to the Tesle service center. I normally drive 5-10 over, so the slower speed added ~10-12 minutes of drive time over 2 hours. But it let us spend nearly an hour less charging -- so a net time savings...
     
  5. MikeC

    MikeC Active Member

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    If it were me, I would try to time it so you left Topeka to arrive at a hotel for a full overnight charge. Depot Inn and Suites in MO is 230 miles away and Lakeside Hotel Casino in Iowa is 210 miles away, so you'd probably need to top off along the way. Then the next morning you have a full battery and you're only 290 or 250 miles from the Bloomington charger. I would not do L2 charging from Topeka to Virginia.
     
  6. DieAbetic

    DieAbetic Member

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    Thank you everyone for the responses

    This is the kind of planning we are doing. Make it to a destination charger for extended 3 hour meal or just stay there overnight. I appreciate the info on those MO hotels - we were looking at exactly those to jump over to Bloomington and avoid the L2. From there we can jump over to Indianapolis then Cincinnati and get some destination charging before having to possible take another 14-50/L2 charge on our way to the Greenbrier hotel in WV.
     
  7. David99

    David99 Active Member

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    Here are my energy usage notes from my trip from LA to Minneapolis. All in dry condition at moderate temperatures. I went pretty speedy on the entire trip. If you adjust your speed a little more conservative, you can definitely lower the energy usage compared to my numbers. I wasn't racing, though. I hope this helps.

    Barstow to Vegas
    2:15h, 72 mph average, 162 miles, 56.5 kWh, 350 Wh/mile

    Vegas to St George
    122 m, 44 kWh, 360 Wh/m, 75 mph

    St George to Beaver
    100 miles, 400 wh/m, 83 mph

    Beaver to Richfield
    65 miles, 20 kWh, 311 Wh/m, 74 mph

    Richfield to Green River
    333 Wh/m, 45 kWh, 72 mph

    Green River to Grand Junction
    98 miles, 35.5 kWh, 360 Wh/mil, 76 mph

    Grand Junction to Glendwood
    92 miles, 33 kWh, 356 Wh/mile, 74 mph

    Glendwood to Silverthorne
    92 miles, 34 kWh, 360 Wh/m, 'going slow'

    Silverthorne to Cheyenne
    270 Wh/m

    Cheyenne to Lusky
    140 miles, 47.5 kWh, 341 Wh/m

    Lusky to Rapid
    153 miles, 52 kWh, 340 Wh/m, going fast

    Rapid to Murdo
    136 miles, 51 kWh, 375 Wh/m, 77 mph

    Murdo to Mitchell,
    141 miles, 55.2 kWh, 392 Wh/m, 79 mph

    Mitchell to Worthington
    129 miles, 37 kWh, 300 Wh/m, going slow

    Moa to Albert Lea
    93 miles, 28 kWh, 306 Wh/m, going at speed limit

    Albert Lea to Worthington
    116 miles, 45.3 kWh, 392 Wh/m, 78 mph

    Worthington to Mitchell
    128 miles, 49 kWh, 382 Wh/m, 82 mph, heater going

    Mitchell to Murdo
    141 miles, 55.5 kWh, 400 Wh/m, heater going

    Murdo to Rapid
    135 miles, 50 kWh, 371 Wh/m, moderate speed

    Rapid to Lusk (via Mount Rushmore)
    156 miles, 56 kWh, 360 Wh/m

    Cheyenne to Silverthorne
    169 miles, 58(55.5) kWh, 328 Wh/m, just above speed limit.
    Warning: you will need 58 kWh to make it up the hill, then you will get back 2.5 kWh by

    going downhill.

    Silverthorne to Glendwood Spring
    93 miles, 21 kWh, 227 Wh/m, 10 over speed limit, (mostly downhill)

    Glenwood Spring to Grand Junction
    92 miles, 29 kWh, 315 Wh/m, 84 mph

    Grand Junction to Green River
    99 miles, 35 kWh, 350 Wh/m, 82 mph

    Green River to Beaver
    189 miles, 65 kWh, 345 Wh/m, 2:55 h drive (skipping a SC on the way)

    Beaver to St George
    105 miles, 30.5 kWh, 291 Wh/m, 83 mph, AC running

    St George to Vegas
    335 W
     
  8. NoCO

    NoCO Member

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    I have a 60 and I did LA to VA back in Sept...I took the only route with full SC coverage (David99's route but through WI,ILL,IN,OH,PA,MD,VA). My guess is that you will need to keep it near 55 -60 in the cold if you need to travel more than 120 miles...I tried using cruise control across MN at 65 and saw the consumption going faster than I felt comfortable and kept it around 55-60. All in all, you should be fine you will probably be spending max time at each SC to get a full charge. What I tried to do is keep my usage to no more than average 30KW as it gets colder the usage goes up. I don't think you should worry to much about the speed either. I found that if I went over 70 I spent longer at the supercharger than if I had done 55-60 and would take about the same time point to point.

    David99's figures look pretty close to my memory. I have ADD...I'm not great at keeping detailed logs.
     
  9. DieAbetic

    DieAbetic Member

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    David99: thank you very much for that breakdown, I appreciate it.

    Thanks for the pointers! I'm especially concerned with the weather/cold, especially if I'm traveling at night when it drops below freezing. I'll probably set it at 55-60 cruise control - should I bump it up to 65-70 if I'm getting close and still have a decent amount on the battery? I've only had it for a month and don't have much supercharging experience. Obviously charging at the upper end of the scale is much slower than the lower end... but I don't want to risk running out of miles.

    On the trade off between driving faster vs. charging faster to save time, it seems like everyone is of the opinion to go slower so there is less to charge, even if that means charging at a slower rate due to partially full battery.
     
  10. AoneOne

    AoneOne Member

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    #10 AoneOne, Dec 16, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2014
    In eco mode with the heat off, energy isn't "wasted" on heating either the cabin or the battery and I've then found that the cold has little effect on efficiency (assuming the tire pressure hasn't dropped). Pre-heating the car while it's plugged in is a great help, too.

    I recently drove to Louisville and found, too, that there are limited charging options. The Louisville Metro KOA advertises 50A service, but charges the full ~$50 site charge for overnight charging.

    There are a few HPWCs listed on PlugShare in Lousiville, and the 21c hotel has two of them for patrons of their restaurant or hotel. We ate and charged there: they're very Tesla friendly.

    Neil Huffman Nissan in Louisville was also very accommodating, only 19 MPH, but free, with a number of restaurants within walking distance.

    Taking I-70 across Ohio will be tricky in a 60: I used about 63 kWh driving from the Dayton to Tridelphia WV superchargers. Topping off in Columbus is probably necessary.

    That said, the northern, supercharger-only route, will literally save you days.
     
  11. DieAbetic

    DieAbetic Member

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    Thank you! We are planning to stop at the 21c hotel for a charge at some point. I'm not willing to go the full northern route, but I think we will end up jumping up to IL/ID to avoid that I64E route with the lack of chargers. If weather is nice I may continue through PA/MD/DC, but I'd like to avoid at route if at all possible.
     
  12. EdA

    EdA Model S P-2540

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    Tip: Drive slowly and with cruise control!
     
  13. linkster

    linkster Member

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    #13 linkster, Dec 16, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2014
    You might consider acquiring all Tesla UMC adapters along with some 3rd party adapters and a properly sized extension cord for emergency use (especially if you get snowed in at a motel for the evening).

    btw, if you "land" near Williamsburg Va, you are welcome to my HPWC, transportation around town while charging, compressed air for tires, jacks/jack stands for tire rotation if I am in town.

    Safe travels
     
  14. purplewalt

    purplewalt Active Member

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    Since you have not driven much for a long distance in your MS, I offer for your consideration that I have found if you have a steady right foot, you might actually gain a few miles of range in lieu of using cruise control.
    I doubt you will ever be able to achieve 100% range, but the sweet spot for me was about 58 mph, which I had almost 95% efficiency (on level grade).
    Anything below 300w/mi average is indeed conservative and a good indicator for near maximum range.
    The reason is, the car tries to "speed up" when ascending a hill to maintain the constant speed (that cruise control is striving for), whereas a steady foot does not take that into account.
    The net effect is you are going a bit slower going up the hill, and that should not be a problem as most other vehicles don't increase their speed going up the hill.

    You do have the savvy strategy to get to about half-way for your leg, and then adjust your speed up or down, depending on conditions and remaining range in your pack.
    I aim to always have a 30 mile buffer in my pack when I arrive at the next charge station.
    Some folks aim for more, others less.
    YMMV
    The color on your dash range bar will change from a bright green to a more yellowish hue when you get below 50 miles of rated range, so that is also a good way to be reminded as you near the end of each leg.

    When you are going over the mountains, observe the tractor-trailer rigs speed decrease as they go up a hill. They are downshifting and trying to maintain a steady rate of speed.
    They might only be doing 40-45 mph going up the mountains, and there are some serious mountains in Utah and Colorado.
    Climbing the mountains at a brisk pace is brutal on your range, while coming down you may actually go a long way (17 miles for me) without any change in your range, or you might actually pick up 3 miles or so while descending.

    Driving between Superchargers is typically a breeze.

    Driving in "the Wild" requires a bit more fore-thought and strategy, because your next charge might entail a bit of a wait at a Level 2 Charger.
    I have an 85, so my wait for a nearly full charge is probably longer than yours (over two hours longer).

    If you are planning on using RV Parks as charging stations, some KOAs have Kabins.
    For every KOA, there are probably at least 20 other RV parks, and some of them also have some sort of accommodations/rooms.
    You will probably need to bring your won bedding, or use a sleeping bag.
    The KOA Kabins are heated, with a queen-size bed and a bunk-bed, some have a small restroom inside the Kabin.
    If you use their 14-50 outlet, you are (typically) charging at about 29 miles per hour, vs 17 miles per hour for a standard Level 2 charging station.
    PM me if you need a listing of RV parks for any part of your journey, I have a couple of catalogues for RV parks and State Parks.

    Have a great adventure!
     
  15. NoCO

    NoCO Member

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    Oh..I should add on thing. Time. If you can get 650 miles per day...you are doing pretty good. On our trip, My wife wanted to save a day traveling so we took turns and did 24 hours a day for two days. Still, I had a great time and while the wife says no more, I'd do it again. I think we did 4 days going and 5 days returning (we did 14 hour days on the return).

    - - - Updated - - -

    I agree with purplewalt, cruise control can get you into trouble if hills are involved or wind, play with it but I think you will also come to the conclusion that the steady foot based on usage and speed, is the best. My one request for Tesla would be a smart cruise control where you could lock the speed but also set the max kW you want the car to meet. So while you might have 65 set, if you hit a hill and you set the max kW to 60, then the car would slow down to meet the kW usage.
     
  16. David99

    David99 Active Member

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    +1
    I so wish the Model S had a user adjustable power limiter and speed limiter combined and independent with the cruise control.
     
  17. NoCO

    NoCO Member

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    I agree with it tied to cruise control, but I'd be a bit fearful of putting a limiter unless it was easily override-able. If I needed to get a quick surge to avoid and issue and I could not because I had put a limit on it, I would be a bit fearful. Cruise control would be easily override-able since your movement on the brake or go pedal could be interpreted by the computer as an override. Still...instead of improvements to the the calendar object...I'd like that.
     
  18. DieAbetic

    DieAbetic Member

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    Thank you all very much for the info and suggestions. Also thank you to everyone who posted/messaged me offering HPWCs or other charging on my way. This community is great!

    I have noticed the cruise control bumps up the speed on hills, I'll definitely control it myself on hilly areas. I've been practicing SamO's suggestion to read the road and slow down going up the hill and speed up going down. It would love the power limiter on cruise control, definitely adding that to the suggestion list.

    Winter tires are on, snow chains stored in the back (probably won't need them, but better safe that sorry!), and the wife and I are all packed to go! I've got a few nice bottles of CA wine for those helping me out with a charge here and there during the holiday season.

    Thanks again everyone!
     
  19. EdA

    EdA Model S P-2540

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    Have fun and post pictures!
     
  20. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

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    This is a strategy that works in short, rolling hills. On long mountain grades, it will use more energy. On long mountain grades, a constant and identical speed up and down hills will use the least energy for a given total travel time.
     

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