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Can the Model S and I make things work?

Discussion in 'Model S' started by AMPd, Feb 2, 2015.

  1. AMPd

    AMPd Active Member

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    Well here we go!


    I'd like to start out by saying I have been following tesla motors since 08, I was a junior in high school and tesla was featured in the local news paper. The article was about the tesla roadster, I fell completely in love with the car not for it's styling but because it was electric!
    Sure it was/is a great looking vehicle and yes it's super quick but I loved the fact that I no longer would have to purchase gasoline (not that I was purchasing gasoline at the time... But you get the point). And I especially loved the fact that I would be driving a car that emitted no harmful gasses into the air we breathe! (I love clean air.)


    Fast forward to 2015 and here I am, after 2 long years of hard work and saving up I can finally afford to purchase that electric car I've dreamt of for so long, what can stop me now?


    Well... I don't have a place to charge it- sort of.
    My current living situation only has a 110v outlet, no way of installing anything more than that.
    However not all is gloom and doom, here are my outside the home options.


    I go to the gym on a daily basis, spend about 1-1.5 hours there. While at the gym I have access to a public chargepoint station (free to use, paid parking)- This will be my main refueling option.


    I also live about 20 miles from a supercharger, now I understand that superchargers are meant for road trippers and believe me I would not want to continuously rely on superchargers for "fuel". Please don't think of me as "that guy" who is saving a few bucks charging at an sc, as that's not the case. However I do anticipate needing to use it a few times per month. I apologize in advance for any inconvenience.


    My commute to work comes to about 20 miles round trip. (No charging options at work as of right now)
    The gym is a 10 mile round trip
    On a typical day I will be losing 30 miles of range, which can be gained back while at the gym + home outlet
    For the not so typical days like weekends I may lose a bit more range. How much? I don't know, that's where the superchargers come in. Again... Sorry to those on a road trip


    Worst case scenario is I leave the car parked in the parking garage charging at the chargepoint and have lyft take me home. Then get a lyft back to the garage the next day.
    That's also an option, but a very last resort type of option.




    I have thought this through quite a few times, it will be a challenge at first but I think I will adapt.


    What do you guys/gals think? Those who are like me with limited charging access.


    I've been told by quite a few people that the hassle is not worth it, well maybe to them, I for one am willing to do a little planning ahead in order to drive such an amazing car.


    And besides, the alternative to the model s is an m5... And I'm not talking about the newer v8 model- I'm talking about the v10 bad boy!


    Now the only thing left to decide is the color, red or black?
    I keep changing my mind on a daily basis depending on which color I see first in the morning.
     
  2. SherSlick

    SherSlick Member

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    Doesn't sound too bad. The 110v should offset any parasitic loss. The biggest thing that comes to my mind is what if you don't make it to the gym for whatever reason? Also, at least near me the chargepoint is not free and more than triple the electricity cost of my home.
     
  3. Dwdnjck

    Dwdnjck Member

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    At worst, you might need to visit the supercharger once a week. If they have decent coffee near, you will be set.
     
  4. techmaven

    techmaven Active Member

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    I lived on 110v charging for awhile. Not just 110v - I could only get 7-8 amps (about 1.5 miles a hour. It's all about how much range you actually use in a day. At about 2.5 miles an hour, if you charge overnight for 10 hours on average, say 9pm to 7am, you get about 25 miles of range a day. If you are parking outside and it is very cold, this won't actually get you much charge at all. But if it is warm-ish, and you can get upwards to 12A of charging, this might be enough to get you about 60-80% of your daily commute depending on how you drive and the weather conditions. If you can get a 110v 20A outlet, this will be a big boost... about 4 miles/hour, which then covers your daily commute and some extra.

    Charging at the gym will help a bit. If you happen to stay home one day, then you might pick up upwards to 90 miles of range (36 hours). It's doable. Not necessarily comfortable, but very doable. The big challenge is the mental one, where you can't just pick up and go where ever if you've run the batteries down. You have to visit a Supercharger at that point if you want to replenish quickly.
     
  5. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    I did just fine solely on a 120V outlet at home for nearly two years - same roundtrip commute as you at 20 miles, plus an occasional 10 mile errand. You won't have a problem at all. Do it!

    People underestimate the utility of 120V charging for low mileage commuters. Even at 12A, or 3-4 miles per hour in temperate climates, that still nets you 40 hours overnight - more than enough to handle your daily needs.

    For trips, you'll be leaving home with a full charge (cause 40 hours overnight), just like everyone else, and then you're in the same boat for while travelling as everyone else (Superchargers, destination charging). On returning home from a long trip, even coming home close to empty, it's still just fine - plug in overnight and you'll have at least 40 miles the next morning, enough for your daily commute.

    The level 2 charger at the gym is a bonus, and hey if it helps motivate you to get there more often or nets you a better parking spot great, use it, but I bet after you live with the car for a while you'll come to find it isn't necessary.
     
  6. RyanT

    RyanT Member

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    Check plugshare to. I have a free charger 2 blocks from my house. I've never seen anyone using it as it's just kind of in a neighborhood. I didn't even notice it until I checked plugshare.. go figure.
     
  7. MattMDK

    MattMDK Member

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    By my calculations, if you work 5 days a week you will be commuting less than 200 miles a week. That's a single full charge. You will be fine. The car is so amazing that any small inconvenience will not be noticed.
     
  8. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    If you have two opposing split-phase 120V outlets handy and know what you're doing you could consider making a "quick 240" adapter to basically combine the outlets to [email protected] The UMC will work at 240V/12A just fine this way (I've done it). It may not seem like much, but you can get double the charging speed... something like 6-7 MPH, 2.8kW. If they're two 120V 20A outlets you can get up to [email protected], which is 3.8kW or about 10-11 MPH.
     
  9. Apoclyps

    Apoclyps Member

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    I lived off 110v for 2 months. Heck, I even took a road trip to Palm Springs (from OC) the first week I got the car (Plugshare is your friend as I found some NEMA 14-50 plugs I could use). I had to plan everything and monitor usage (created an Excel spreadsheet to determine how much range I would have during the week in case I did something spontaneous). my daily commute to work was 38 miles round trip. I was fortunate that my work had installed L2 chargers for all the leafs and volts, so if any of them were free, I could get 3 hours of charging done. So it can be done. have to point out that I had an MS60.
     
  10. Rheazombi

    Rheazombi Member

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    Damn, son. You've got it easier than me! I would kill for a 110v outlet I could rely on all the time. I have no home charging whatsoever. There are garages nearby that have chargers but they are 36 dollars a DAY so I only use them verrrry sparingly (less than once a month) and I cry inside. There is a cheaper garage but it requires taking public transportation to get there and it is only cheap on the weekends (9 dollars a day, and not counting the cost of public transportation to get there), also if I want to access my car afterhours I have to take a cab, ugh. I try to make use of the few HPWCs scattered around MA (there's maybe 3 within 20 miles of here), many of which are unavailable during work hours. I use some J1772s at a handful of Whole Foods (but not the WF I usually would shop at) and maybe a supercharger occasionally if I'm driving around and happen to be near one (closest one to my house is 25 miles away).

    All that being said, I never seem to run low on charge despite driving about 1000-2000 miles a month. The 85 battery is a really nice size and allows me so much flexibility. My charging situation isn't ideal but I'm more than able to make it work.

    Go for it and congrats on being able to buy one!
     
  11. AMPd

    AMPd Active Member

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    Thank you all for your replies, I definitely feel a lot better about going forward knowing I'm not alone in such a situation.
    Thank you!
     
  12. tonybelding

    tonybelding Active Member

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    I'm gonna be the voice of contrariness here for a moment. It sounds like you can make the Model S work, and if you've got your heart set on one, then go for it. However... The Model S is one car. A great one, yes, but there is no one car that's best for everyone. I wonder if you considered a Chevy Volt? You could keep it charged at Level 1 (household current), do a lot of driving on electricity, and yet whenever that's not enough you can still put some gas in it.

    Obviously the Volt is not in the same class as the Model S in a lot of ways (which is reflected in the price tag), but it's nonetheless a well-engineered car that has garnered its own awards, and reputedly has the highest customer satisfaction of anything GM has ever produced. It's no lemon.
     
  13. rogbmw

    rogbmw Member

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    Another way to think of it is this - think of the time you spend going to a supercharger 2 - 3 times a week replacing the time you would go to a gas station, and also your time going to a supercharger would be -vs- paying for gas for the rest of your Model S's life if you get one. I know I sure do not miss going to a gas station.....
     
  14. Mel911

    Mel911 Member

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    sounds like you've thought a lot about it and it also sounds like you're a planner. so I wouldn't worry about the charger. I also wouldn't beat yourself up over using the superchargers because you're not a "road tripper" . use the heck out of them - you've paid for it!
     
  15. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    Sounds like you can make it work. If the finances all work out then you are good to go. Congrats.
     
  16. Ziggy

    Ziggy Member

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    I'm with the other owners. You can make it work, and you're so close to a supercharger in case of emergency, ie you forget to plug in the car at night. Also, your living situation sounds like in can change in the future and I'm sure you'll look for something more accommodating to your lifestyle with an EV.
     
  17. roblab

    roblab Active Member

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    I am so glad to hear you have your priorities lined up and are going to go electric!

    I have no idea why you have no way of installing more than 110v, though. Most every house in the USA has 220 v and it is fairly simple to connect to it. If you find the two 110v legs in your house that add up to 220, you could, actually, build a "Y" extension cord affair and use low amp 220. More likely, if you have access to your building's circuit breaker, you could wire in a 14-50. But I also imagine you have investigated all this.

    I see you are in NorCal. Wish you were near. I let everyone charge at my 14-50 who comes around needing a charge. Just swap cars.

    But I am so glad for you. Get the RED. I am not a red person, but at least it's color.
     
  18. Cyclone

    Cyclone Active Member

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    I am also going to be a bit of a contrarian here. And caveat: I am not an owner yet!

    But that said, given your young age and how you have been struggling to make this dream come true, let me give you some unsolicited advice. Make sure you are meeting your long-term financial success goals too. For instance, if you are NOT saving for retirement, have an emergency savings built up, and have your financial life on-track, then I would not recommend moving forward with this purchase. The car has value, but it should not be purchased at the expense of your long-term goals.

    Now, having said that, if you are saving for the future and have any other financial goals being worked on successfully, then I also agree with the others that you could make this work.

    In my personal scenario, I will also only have 110v charging at home at first, but I am not worried. There are L2 public chargers around me, a supercharger on the other end of town, and a service center within 6 miles of my house (one-way). I travel 200 miles a week on average, so L1 charging will work just fine. Totally doable and like you, I am happy to hear others have made this work too!
     
  19. trils0n

    trils0n 2013 P85

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    Just to echo other people, I have made 120v charging work for me. No home charging, but 120 at work. 8hr/day charging while at work gives about 25-28 miles. Since my commute is usually 12 miles round trip it works for me. Things get a little more tricky if I have to be all over the bay area for work, but public charging usually fills that gap no problem. It'd be much easier to have the 120 at home. And of course Superchargers are always a backup. Helps that there are 4 or 5 locations within 2-3 miles of my place that have 30amp public charging. If I had a CHAdeMO adapter, it would be even easier, as there is a charger about 1.5 miles from my place.
     
  20. PokerBroker

    PokerBroker Member

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    An overnight charge on 110v when you use 30 to 50 miles per day will pretty much top you off every night anyways... Even if you don't quite get topped off you will still have well over 200miles and only need 30-50 the next day. This is a piece of cake.
     

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