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Driving to the Cottage

Discussion in 'Canada' started by mknox, Feb 19, 2013.

  1. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    I realize this is an Ottawa to Toronto thread, but I am wondering about a (shorter) trip that I will likely be making when my Model S arrives, and am interested in opinions.

    My trip is from my home in the GTA to a friend's cottage near Bracebridge, ON. It is 196 km or 122 miles each way. Originally, I was thinking it would be no problem to make the trip and back on a single charge, but with temperature, vampire draw and other issues, I'm no longer sure. The only charging option I would have there is 120 volts, and there doesn't seem to be too much public charging infrastructure nearby. Typically, I go for a weekend (or part of a weekend), so at best I might have a bit over 24 hours @ 120 volts/12 amps.

    In the summer, I think I could recoup enough miles to do it. In the winter, I'm not sure the 120 volts would do much more than "hold" the car's range.

    I may offer to foot the cost of a 14-50 at the back door, but barring that, what do you think????
     
  2. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    You cannot realistically expect do 392 km on a single charge. Running at today's temperature you'll be out of juice at 330 km.

    110V is very slow, and extremely slow if it has to use the pack heater. It could be as little as 2 kilometers per hour.

    Go for the NEMA 14-50. If you can plug into that overnight, then you can blast back and forth at whatever speed you want with no worries whatsoever.
     
  3. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    I'll talk to him this weekend. He's a SUV guy (drives a Buick Enclave), so I'll just have to convince him that it'll be useful when he trades in for a Model X!
     
  4. LazMan

    LazMan Member

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    This weekend I drove to Collingwood, stayed for 24 hours and then drove back. The total distance was 330km with 24 hours that I could have had a 120 volt plug available in a warmish garage.

    About half the driving was on the 400 (speed 60-120km, depending on traffic) and the other half was on about 50-80km/hr. The temperature was about -8 to -3 most of the time.

    I made the drive in my Prius (which has a feature whereby the accelerator is pressed, engine noise ensues and almost imperceptible acceleration takes place).

    I'm thinking I could have made the trip with a normal charge, hoping for about 80km from 24 hrs of 120 volt charging.

    Would you agree?
     
  5. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    I'd definitely do a Range mode charge. Silly to leave that range on the table. That's what Range mode is for! Just don't leave it in Range mode for weeks at a time.

    I think people don't realize - having the car down to 0 km is a lot worse for the pack than having it all the way up to 424 km!!!

    NEVER HESITATE to use Range mode charging if you think you could possibly need it.
     
  6. djp

    djp Roadster 2.0 VIN939

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    I second the suggestion for a 14-50. Or he could install a 6-50 and do some small welding projects around the cottage with it. :smile:

    I frequently drive from Toronto to a buddy's cottage in Haliburton, which is about 220km. I can easily do it on a Standard Charge on the Roadster and he has a NEMA 6-50 in his garage which lets me recharge in a few hours once I arrive. There are several advantages to having a 240V plug on-site:

    1. No need to drive conservatively on the way up and back. If you have twice the range you need you can have a lot more fun on the drive.

    2. No wasted time waiting for a charge at an RV park or charge station. You can let it charge while you're on the dock.

    3. Car becomes available for trips into town or an afternoon drive. The best part of cottage country are the twisty country roads. Trust me, once you get the S you'll want to spend a few hours every weekend burning through a charge on the back roads.

    4. 120V is painfully slow and most RV parks are closed in the winter. As you said, options are limited. 120V is doable if necessary but you'll get less enjoyment out of the car.

    If he needs some convincing take him for a test drive.
     
  7. Duckjybe

    Duckjybe Member

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    #7 Duckjybe, Feb 19, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013
    My Cottage Experience

    I just took my 2 day old S to our cottage near snowy Huntsville. Knowing that I only had 110v at the cottage I figured I would need to conserve as much power as possible just in case. I was warned that 110v may not be enough to add much range in the cold. I did have a great backup plan - the CS90 charger at the Best Western in Orillia. I started off from Oakville with a Range charge. I drove the back roads up Hwy 27 doing the speed limit (hard!) to the Best Western in Orillia. Of course I get ICE'd. Two cars parked in both EV spots. Luckily the front desk had the license plate on file and the owner was in his room. He said he just didn't see the sign and would take more notice next time. I think people don't expect to see any electric cars around at all. The hotel recommends calling ahead so they can block off the spot for you - nice. I plugged in and confirmed what my window sticker was missing - I do indeed have the twin chargers that I paid for. I was charging at 69A, 64km/hr. Fantastic. I stayed for 3 hours for a standard fill up and had dinner ( I can't remember my Rated range numbers, sorry). The food in the restaurant was top notch. I made a point of telling them I was eating there because I was using their charging station and thanked them for it.

    Made it to the cottage road which is a single lane snowplowed road about 2 km long. The S performed really well with the Hakka R's. The temp was about -18 C. I plugged in with 110v when I got there. I noted that at 110V I was getting 4 km/hr of charging. I could live with that. However, that was with a warm battery. I woke up the next morning with only 2 extra km and the battery showing charging at 0 km/hr. Hmmm time for plan B. So much for driving to Rosseau to show friends. Being that the kitchen at my Mom's dormant cottage next door was being renovated and the stove was disconnected, I disconnected the stove outlet, cut the line outside to the hot tub that I was going to re-install anyway (it had never been dug into the ground), pulled it up to the driveway, connected it to the stove outlet and voila - 240 v charging. Wow now it was rocking - for a few minutes - and then the breaker tripped. I tried dialling the current down to 30A. Tripped again. I was afraid of that - Hot tub GFCI. Luckily I had a spare 40A breaker that I popped in with a bit of rewiring. Then all was good at 36 A.

    Later that day took a trip to a cottage on Lake Rosseau and was encouraged to park and walk down not drive down a very steep hill on a snow plowed driveway. The tires seemed good so I drove down and then back up no problem. My friend says his 7 series without snows can make it but only with a good run at it and even still its a bit dicey. I could have almost stopped on the hill with the S. I took 3 guys for a ride and they were blown away. That night it was -27 C and the car charged to standard mode no problem for the next day. I decided too late to change to Range mode before our departure on Monday night but it never got there. I think I left with 380Km rated. Seemed like lots for a 240 km drive to me? I was confused by the big discrepancy between Rated and Projected. I decided to do a test and try driving my normally 20km over the limit (like lots of people do). I got to the 407 in TO and realized I was going to be closer to empty than I wanted or anticipated. Pulled in to home with 40km Rated. The dotted yellow was showing power limiting and the battery percent full indicator was yellow.

    So 380 km Rated turned into 280 km real while driving normally!! New owners please beware of Rated range in the winter. Tesla needs to give us a better predication of estimated mileage on the centre display.

    Love the car! I am driving to Beaver Valley ski club this weekend but I am not sure how I can charge while there? Any ideas in that area?
    IMG_0118_1024.jpg

    mKnox : Charge in Orillia.
     
  8. Jason S

    Jason S Model S Sig Perf (P85)

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    Good for a welder too. Or an RV.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Can put the energy app on the right hand display of the centre. Then just look at projected. It matches the large energy app in the center console, so be sure to use the longer average range.
     
  9. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    #9 Doug_G, Feb 19, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013
    Expect to lose about 20% range when the temperature is below freezing. From what I can tell, the loss starts to kick in a few degrees above freezing, and is at the full 20% by a few degrees below freezing. (This is based entirely on empirical observations during several different road trips. Mileage may vary.)

    On one trip where the temperature was -22C I was getting a little additional range loss on top of that. I think it was because the pack heater kept running while I was driving.

    By the way, serious kudos on being (a) adventurous enough to do that with only days experience with the car, and (b) cobbling together a quick solution!
     
  10. Duckjybe

    Duckjybe Member

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    The 20 % number is good to know. Being an engineer means having a plan C in place just in case the first two don't work out. Besides, I couldn't bare to leave it at home after waiting a year and a half to get it.

    I haven't checked out the forums on this but what are the thoughts on a 100/150 ft home made 6 gauge stove/dryer extension cable for when you are visiting?
     
  11. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    Funny you mention that. My "Plan C" for the cottage was/is one of these in through the kitchen window (adjacent to the parking area) and plugged into the stove outlet! I'm thinking of buying or making one to keep coiled up in the frunk "just in case".

    - - - Updated - - -

    Thanks for the Orillia tip. I drive right through there on Hwy 11.

    Spent many years at the family cottage on Lake Rosseau. During my college years, I worked summers at a local marina and loved taking my boat to/from work every day. My folks ended up selling the place when I was in my 20's and before I could reasonably buy it from them (I'd just bought my first house). I was heartbroken, and so was my good friend who spent a lot of time coming there to visit. I think that's why he ended up buying his own place near Bracebridge. My Aunt & Uncle owned the big white cottage in the village of Rosseau to the left of the marina when coming into the bay by boat. Spend many summers there too.

    Looking forward to getting back to the area and the tips here are quite helpful!
     
  12. Timothy

    Timothy Driving on Sunshine

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    I drive to the 'Cottage' everyday! It is where I work--Cottage Hospital, Santa Barbara--3 miles from home. Bwahahahahahah!!!!!
     
  13. hans

    hans P631

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    I don't know how old the cottage is, but if it's ancient (like mine) then double check that you will have access to a properly grounded 120V plug. I found out the hard way that my cottage plugs are not grounded and the Mobile Connector refuses to charge. I have a 60 kWh battery so I couldn't make it the 90 miles each way with the unplugged overnight range loss due to the cold and the lack of a deep sleep mode in the 4.2 firmware.
     
  14. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    In my case, my friend and I actually wired the whole cottage when it was built. We took out the necessary permits and did all the work ourselves. Lots of capacity (electric heat) and good, modern (well, modern in the '90s) wiring.
     
  15. magnushg

    magnushg New Member

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    Powerloss if unplugged

    Still have to wait a while for my S in Norway, but I have a worry about powerloss in the cold if not plugged in. When we go to visit my brother in law's cabin-which we do quite often-that has no electricity. Let's say we stay for 3 days in -20C which is a fairly typical stay during the winter. Anyone with experiences similar to this? Range is not a big issue as the distance is only 50 miles from home, but we need to get going and with at least 50 miles range to spare.
     
  16. decibel

    decibel Member

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    Any experience on getting from Ottawa to the Muskoka region (in the summer)?
    PlugShare indicates that there are no chargers in the Algonquin Park / Bancroft / Haliburton region.

    A Google Maps distance of 355km driving via Renfrew and 60 through Algonquin Park seems within range for an S85 given that only 65km will be on expressways and the rest will be on 80 - 90km/h roads (that would get me to the in-laws and a 14-50 plug).

    Any chance that I could drive a straight shot 80km/h and cover the 440kms from Ottawa to Georgian Bay in order to get the kids to summer camp?
     
  17. mnx

    mnx 2013 P85

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    Covering 440km sounds doable at 80km/h to me especially if you are willing to forgo A/C. That said I've never tried for much over 400km. Regardless I'd have some charging lined up enroute just in case there is a strong headwind or something that day.
     
  18. cwave1

    cwave1 Member

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    Remember when planning that this route is quite hilly which will negatively affect your range. I would expect that the 355km route should be no problem with conservative driving but I would make sure there was a charging backup option before trying 440kms.
     
  19. mrElbe

    mrElbe Member

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    Back in the 80's I was with my Fiat 850 Spider in Vermont. It was brutally cold and the engine would not turn over. I built a wood fire under the oil pan to heat it up. They are still talking about the crazy Canadian with the fire under his car. Building a fire under the Tesla battery would not be recommended!
     
  20. Jaff

    Jaff Active Member

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    ...insurance companies frown on this sort of behaviour...:wink::biggrin:

     

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