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Cold weather

Rustybkts

Member
Feb 8, 2020
549
326
Leicestershire
I have been driving EV's since 2008. The problem is that batteries are used for both motion and heat when its cold. ICE's have waste heat and its not fully realised by newbies.

My last car was an Ampera and having the back up ICE you would think running the 10.2kWh available battery capacity to zero would not be a problem but many owners like myself talked about the stress of reaching their destination without the damn ICE starting up....almost worse than actually running out in a full EV. :)
The car has an easy 50 mile EV only range in summer. Not bad for a "hybrid" from 2012.
That 10.2kWh was rapidly drained if you like the car warm in winter and easily used 50% of capacity to heat it on wintry days.
Nevertheless, many owners like myself would hypermile and drive with minimal heating just to cover their commuting. Pre-conditioning was a must when plugged in.
The ICE wouldn't get used for months.

The modern cars with over 200 true miles range are far and away less stressful in winter but you do need to stay mindful of where that heat is actually coming from.
I leave the range meter on miles but as @pgkevet mentions above, view it as a rough guide only. The "Energy Graph" really does give good information if you need to "push the envelope".
 

NewbieT

Active Member
Aug 16, 2019
1,037
635
North West
If the motivation to reduce cabin heat comes from sustainability rather than increasing range it misses the big picture. Getting as many people switching from ICE to EVs will be far more impactful and won’t be helped by people thinking they need to be cold while driving. With a Tesla you don’t *need* to be cold. Choosing to gain an extra 5 miles in range - up to you but no thanks!

The miles vs % debate becomes irrelevant once someone is familiar with the car and understands real world range. There is a learning curve to get to that point though.
 

pgkevet

Active Member
Jul 1, 2019
1,248
1,093
mid wales
You may be right, but what evidence do you have to back your statement?

Somewhere or other in Teslas warranty pages it tells you the battery level at which the warranty kicks in and reading the few reports from folk who have had a 'failed' battery describes the replacement - they get a refurbed pack, theirs is sent back and the worst bricks swapped out for ones with similar capacity from other returned dud packs and used as the next warranty replacements.
 

DrJFoster

Member
Aug 27, 2019
119
85
UK
The times I've found where the consumption was much higher than expected (after allowing for temperature) have been when driving into a head wind. The cold does hurt but after the first 20 miles the efficiency usually improves although not to summer levels of efficiency. A betterroute planner, the in car prediction etc do not cater for head winds, and if you drive into a 20 mph headwind you're more or less making that 70mph feel like 90mph to the car, and we know that's very bad for efficiency.

This. Except for the bit about ABRP but who really uses ABRP for every journey or when out and about? Drive into a head wind and consumption drops off. Tail wind and happy days.
 
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ACarneiro

Active Member
Jun 20, 2019
1,310
1,032
Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK
Somewhere or other in Teslas warranty pages it tells you the battery level at which the warranty kicks in and reading the few reports from folk who have had a 'failed' battery describes the replacement - they get a refurbed pack, theirs is sent back and the worst bricks swapped out for ones with similar capacity from other returned dud packs and used as the next warranty replacements.
Interesting, thank you for that.
Doesn’t seem an unreasonable thing to do, I suppose...
 

Adopado

Active Member
Aug 19, 2019
3,606
2,728
Scotland
The miles vs % debate becomes irrelevant once someone is familiar with the car and understands real world range. There is a learning curve to get to that point though.

That's true but the inescapable fact is that when your battery is charged to 90% (or whatever) that's how much energy you have on board for subsequent journeys. It is also an inescapable fact that when the car is charged to 270 miles range that is not how much range you have, except in some very special and infrequently achieved circumstances. 270 miles range is not a fact whereas 90% battery charge is. Best to base journey planning on a fact rather than a guess!
 
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GeorgeSymonds

Active Member
Mar 16, 2018
1,076
665
UK
That's true but the inescapable fact is that when your battery is charged to 90% (or whatever) that's how much energy you have on board for subsequent journeys. It is also an inescapable fact that when the car is charged to 270 miles range that is not how much range you have, except in some very special and infrequently achieved circumstances. 270 miles range is not a fact whereas 90% battery charge is. Best to base journey planning on a fact rather than a guess!
Except 90% is 90% of an amount that shrinks over time and all those that suggested batterygate lost 20-30 real miles without realising. And get in a different car and 90% can take you very different distances.

270 miles is a proxy for a real energy amount

You have to make adjustments either way to work out if you have enough to get you where you are going. Let people use what they want.
 

GeorgeSymonds

Active Member
Mar 16, 2018
1,076
665
UK
Exactly ... so why not just stick with the real energy amount ... ;)

I'd probably prefer that, I guess the logic is the units (when showing miles) are adjusted for the type of car in so far as a mile is a smaller amount of energy in a M3 than in an MX as the consumption is higher in the MX - so 50 miles takes you the same distance in both, even if that isn't 50 miles. A % doesn't give you an energy proxy nor does it attempt any form of consistency across models either M3 MS or MX or SR or Long Range so 30% means massively different things depending and doesn't give you any clue to how far you can drive.

90% is one of those facts that tells you nothing. Reminds me of a joke about a man who's lost in a hot air balloon. He asks a man on the ground "where am I?" - the reply is 10 meters up in a hot air balloon.. factually correct but no use to anybody.

If you like % use it, just don't preach to others that they are wrong showing miles.
 
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Adopado

Active Member
Aug 19, 2019
3,606
2,728
Scotland
If you like % use it, just don't preach to others that they are wrong showing miles.

No evidence of preaching ... strong evidence of people trying to remove at least one layer of potential confusion for newer owners!

Anyone who has followed this forum for any length of time realises that a short while after the delivery of new cars we get yet more new threads started by owners raising the same issues. Their questions invariably start with a statement that their car "showed x miles of range" but that on this journey or that journey they started with x range but it turned out to be totally wrong so are wondering if there is a problem with their particular car.

It's easier for people to accept that their car does fewer miles per percentage point than it is for them to accept that the display of a number of miles on their display is simply wrong most of the time. People will still have reasonable questions about range but at least it saves us having to put the screen display figure into context every time and explain why their expectations aren't met for almost every drive they make. Clearly this doesn't change the issues of how far the car will drive and the discussion about the reasons behind this but it removes just one of the potential points of irritation that people rightly feel when they see they are not getting what they were promised.
 
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Neilio

Member
Jul 8, 2020
870
507
Brentford
I've decided to switch to miles from %age against the advice of everyone on here! I'll see if I can get used to it.

The thing is I'm not sure why the range is such a big issue with Tesla. I had a diesel car before the Tesla and the range meter on that was never accurate either. Admittedly it was less affected by cold weather but it was effected by every other thing that affects the consumption of any car. I can't remember it being an issue. Not sure why it is so much on a tesla
 
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Rustybkts

Member
Feb 8, 2020
549
326
Leicestershire
The thing is I'm not sure why the range is such a big issue with Tesla. I had a diesel car before the Tesla and the range meter on that was never accurate either. Admittedly it was less affected by cold weather but it was effected by every other thing that affects the consumption of any car. I can't remember it being an issue. Not sure why it is so much on a tesla

It isn't but people make it so, especially new drivers.
I think it will take some years to be generally understood by the average new owner of EV's in the way that no-one these days cares a fig about the quoted mpg figures ICE's are sold with.
They are also virtually never achieved, the only difference with EV's is the lower range when its cold.
 

pgkevet

Active Member
Jul 1, 2019
1,248
1,093
mid wales
...
The thing is I'm not sure why the range is such a big issue with Tesla....
I can't remember it being an issue. Not sure why it is so much on a tesla

Because you have it think about it. With my ICE I can hop in whatever state of 'charge' and get to a filling station within around 10/15 miles. I don't have to pre-plan or think about my next fuelling stop and if I drive 300 miles to my help my daughter and park on road with no access to a granny lead I don't have to worry about phantom drain while the security system is active in a dodgier area or worry about making sure I've found somewhere for a top-up getting to her and being able to get back to a charger after staying a few days. The average ICE is probably less of a 'keying' target too.

Of course it's just a matter of getting used to it but add a possibility of a charger queue and a need to top to 100% before my final leg and it self-evidently can be a pain. For the common local journeys it's a non-issue but also consider that winter time going out for the day realy means staying within 100 miles so you have enough on board to get back (Welsh charger desert rules)
 

Neilio

Member
Jul 8, 2020
870
507
Brentford
Because you have it think about it. With my ICE I can hop in whatever state of 'charge' and get to a filling station within around 10/15 miles. I don't have to pre-plan or think about my next fuelling stop and if I drive 300 miles to my help my daughter and park on road with no access to a granny lead I don't have to worry about phantom drain while the security system is active in a dodgier area or worry about making sure I've found somewhere for a top-up getting to her and being able to get back to a charger after staying a few days. The average ICE is probably less of a 'keying' target too.

Of course it's just a matter of getting used to it but add a possibility of a charger queue and a need to top to 100% before my final leg and it self-evidently can be a pain. For the common local journeys it's a non-issue but also consider that winter time going out for the day realy means staying within 100 miles so you have enough on board to get back (Welsh charger desert rules)
No, I get that, I just don't understand how it's an issue. You'd have to plan your route via petrol stations if you were going a long way too. ICE vehicles have just as unreliable "miles left" readings than EVs. Also, those with digital fuel gauges tend to have less accurate "power remaining" gauges than Teslas have. I just don't see why such an issue is made of it with EVs. Maybe it's just winter? Maybe it's just because we are used to hideously inefficient ICE cars turning all that fuel into heat rather than motion, that can be reused? Maybe. Hopefully it's just a teething pain and realising that cold weather will hit your range slightly will just become the norm.
 

Mr H

Active Member
Jan 6, 2020
1,537
1,565
Manchester
. You'd have to plan your route via petrol stations if you were going a long way too. .

Really, in more than 30 years driving ICE i've never planned fuel stops and i've been all over Europe many times, on bikes too with smaller tanks. I'd quite happily take my wife's Aygo to the south of France without planning anything except maybe hotels. Petrol stations are everywhere and you're guaranteed you can re-fuel at any of them, anytime, anywhere.
 
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pgkevet

Active Member
Jul 1, 2019
1,248
1,093
mid wales
No, I get that, I just don't understand how it's an issue. You'd have to plan your route via petrol stations if you were going a long way too. ICE vehicles have just as unreliable "miles left" readings than EVs. Also, those with digital fuel gauges tend to have less accurate "power remaining" gauges than Teslas have. I just don't see why such an issue is made of it with EVs. Maybe it's just winter? Maybe it's just because we are used to hideously inefficient ICE cars turning all that fuel into heat rather than motion, that can be reused? Maybe. Hopefully it's just a teething pain and realising that cold weather will hit your range slightly will just become the norm.

I've never bothered planning a journey in my ICE..as soon as it's down to a quarter tank I keep an eye out for a fuel stop - bound to be one well within remaining range wherever you are and topping up doesn't take long. Its also unlikely to be out of service or only pump at 1/3rd speed or less etc. And if I'm on the motorway network needing fuel I'll check for the nearest cheap supermarket off motorway rather than pay silly rates ('cos I'm cheap)
 

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