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Driving to Vegas from LA for 1st time-- a couple questions

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Lazenby, May 4, 2016.

  1. Lazenby

    Lazenby Member

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    I have a P85D. I'm going with two other people and a couple suitcases. My goal is to get to Vegas as quickly as possible without having to worry at all about range. Based on other threads I've seen, this is my game plan...

    --Set the battery limit to 100% the night before my trip. That will give me 250 miles of range to start the trip. That should be plenty to get me to Barstow without having to worry about how fast I'm going, air conditioning etc. Am I right about this?

    --When I get to Barstow, I was thinking of setting the charge limit a bit lower because I heard the lower the limit the faster the charge. I daily set it to 90% so I was thinking of just setting it to 90% once I get to Barstow. I figure I will eat lunch here and take a half hour break or so as it charges?

    ---Since the remainder of the trip is uphill and I don't want to feel any anxiety whatsoever, I was thinking of stopping at Primm before going to Vegas. Maybe letting it charge again for 20 minutes so I have plenty of miles to spare by the time I get to Vegas.

    --Once I'm in Vegas, I'm valeting my car at a hotel where they can charge it, so I would reset the battery limit back to 100% so for my return trip I am back to 250 miles.

    --On the way back, repeat the steps in reverse order.

    Any thoughts/comments on my gameplan? My main questions are:
    --is it smart to set the full battery limit the night before my trip?
    --am I right to bypass Rancho Cucamonga and go straight to Barstow?
    --am I right to set the charge limit lower when supercharging?
    --how much range should I have leaving Barstow where I can easily make it to Primm?
    --how much range should I have leaving Primm to easily make it to Vegas?
    --any differences on the return trip from Vegas to LA?

    If anyone can help me out with these questions or have any other thoughts, it would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. MikeC

    MikeC Active Member

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    is it smart to set the full battery limit the night before my trip?

    I would set it to 90% and them bump to 100% in the morning, although 90% really is plenty to get to Barstow.

    --am I right to bypass Rancho Cucamonga and go straight to Barstow?

    You definitely can.

    --am I right to set the charge limit lower when supercharging?

    The speed you charge is the same, but obviously slows down as the battery fills. So just set it to charge to what you need.

    --how much range should I have leaving Barstow where I can easily make it to Primm?

    Use EV trip calculator for exact numbers, but 80-90% should be plenty.

    --how much range should I have leaving Primm to easily make it to Vegas?

    Again, use EV trip calculator but you really don't need much since you have destination charging. For reference, I went from Vegas to Barstow on 178 rated miles.

    --any differences on the return trip from Vegas to LA?

    Headwinds can really impact range, but leaving Vegas with a full battery, you'll be fine. We used to do this trip all the time in the early days (i.e. 2013) with just the Barstow Supercharger. Having Primm and RC for a safety net makes it pretty simple.
     
  3. cbin97

    cbin97 Member

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    Yeah set the trip in your GPS and it will tell you when you have enough range to make it to the next charger or destination. On my recent trip I left OC with 207 miles, stopped and charged in Barstow for about 35 mins and then again in Primm for 15. Driving the whole way with range mode off and ludicrous on.

    On the way back I left with 217 miles, turned on range mode and turned off Ludicrous and made it from Vegas to Barstow with about 60 miles left. Charged for 35 mins which I think gave me low 200's (I can't remember) but I made it from Barstow home and still had 87 miles when I got back to south OC. Much of the San Bernardino pass you coast and regen. If you use range and turn off insane/ludicrous you can easily do it in one stop. Especially if you have a good charger at the final destination.
     
  4. valkeriefire

    valkeriefire Member

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    I'm still waiting for my new model S but I've driven this drive a million times and I took a loan model S to Primm to tryout the super chargers.

    You should easily make it from your home in LA to Barstow, even at 90% charge. From Barstow you should make Vegas easily even on 80% charge. No need to go to 90 or 100% at the superchargers it just takes more time and you don't really need it. UNLESS you're driving on a weekend and get stuck in super heavy traffic. It's possible to spend 8 or more hours going from Vegas to LA if you leave at the wrong time.

    I'd recommend charging to 80% in Barstow and going straight to Vegas. Primm kinda sucks IMHO. My friend here in Vegas has an 85 and his preferred method is Vegas to Primm, charge to 80%-90 and then skip Barstow (due to possible waits at the charger) and go straight to LA due to the downhill. Either way you do it, you only need to stop once. Vegas to Barstow is 150 so even at 80% you have 33% extra charge (although +50% of distance ideal for reducing anxiety).

    Let me know how it goes. My model S will be making this drive frequently.
     
  5. Lazenby

    Lazenby Member

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    Thanks for all the responses. One question-- why not set the battery limit at 100% the night before the trip so I start out with max miles of range? I know it takes longer to charge, but since I'll be sleeping it doesn't matter. Then once I get to the supercharger I could set it back down to 80-90% so I don't have to wait so long. I guess I just don't fully understand the charge/limit situation.

    Sounds like you all agree that with a p85d, driving 85mph with air conditioning blasting, I will definitely be able to make it to Barstow with no need to stop in Rancho Cucamonga. Just want to make clear though that I can make it from Barstow to Vegas without stopping in Primm. How many miles of range would I need to get from Barstow to Vegas with plenty to spare?
     
  6. cbin97

    cbin97 Member

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    I would charge 100% the night before at your house. No reason not to IMO. Why not stack the deck higher before you go. I usually do, didn't in my example cause that morning had to run to a kids bball game.
     
  7. Mark Z

    Mark Z Active Member

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    If you are enjoying breakfast at Barstow, your P85D may reach 90% before you return to the vehicle.

    Primm is only necessary if you want to charge up for a round trip back to Primm or if you are driving to a further location. Primm allows many Tesla users to enjoy Las Vegas without charging up at a hotel or at the downtown Supercharger.

    On the return trip, if you are not stopping at Primm, always have at least 90% to arrive at Barstow. Charge to a higher amount if windy or cold.

    Always set your navigation to your next planned charge location. Accurate state of charge estimates will provide confidence and no range anxiety.
     
  8. Lazenby

    Lazenby Member

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    I was wondering about the navigation-- whether I set it to my Vegas destination or to the Barstow supercharger. I guess just set it for the Barstow supercharger, then when I'm in Barstow set it for my Vegas hotel? Just want to be sure that if I charge to 90% in Barstow I will definitely make it Vegas...that's the only reason I was thinking of going to Primm. I had heard that last leg of the trip is uphill and as someone who has never had LESS than 120miles of range left, I don't want it to get down to 20-30 miles left, even if I'm just outside of Vegas.
     
  9. valkeriefire

    valkeriefire Member

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    Read this post, it's long but very informative...

    Putting some numbers on the factors that affect range

    The summary is this...

    There are two reasons not to charge to 100%. 1) wear on the battery 2) time. At home time doesn't matter but at a Supercharger going from 80-100% doubles the time it took go from 30-80%.

    Let's say LA to Barstow is 115 miles. Add 20 miles for 2000' elevation = 135miles. +26% for 75mph+7% for 100 degrees (+33% total) That's 179 rated miles to reach Barstow. A 200 mile 80% charge will make it but you'll probably have a little range anxiety so go ahead and charge to 90% or 100%. If you home charged to 100% when you started, then 179 miles of usage took you from 250 down to 71 rated miles (or 28%, which means you'd be at 8% if you'd only charged to 80%). Charging from 28% to 80% will take you less time than 28% to 90% or 100%. When I charged my loaner 90D at Primm, 80-90% took 15 minutes, based on that 80-100% will take at least 30 minutes. You don't need that extra 20% to make the drive.

    Barstow to Vegas is 153 miles. 3000' of elevation gain is almost negated by 3000' of elevation loss (+30 then -24), so +6 miles. +33% for speed and temperature = 211 rated miles, so you'll need to charge to 90% unless you plan on stopping in Primm which you are planning to do. If you do stop in Primm, then only charge to 80% at Barstow because the 15 minutes you save from not charging to 90% will pay you back with faster charging at Primm because your battery will be lower.

    Basically, use that thread I linked to do the math and as long as you the calculations correct, you should never have a problem.


    Remember, if you start getting range anxiety, drive slower. Slower = more range. Range at 55mph is 20% further than at 65mph.
     
  10. Lazenby

    Lazenby Member

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    Thank you Valkerie... since my car is a lease, I'm not concerned about long term battery, so sounds like the fastest/safest plan is to charge to 100% the night before...leave LA with 250miles of range...go straight to Barstow, where I set the limit at 90%...leave Barstow with 210-220 miles of range which should get me to Primm without any anxiety...then charge 80% at Primm (I probably could charge less since my hotel has a charger, but may want to play it safe). Awesome...and thanks for the link!
     
  11. BrokerDon

    BrokerDon Member

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    We just drove our P85D with 21" tires from Newport Beach to Las Vegas 2 months ago with a comparable load so here's my input:
    1. Don't stress. I'll bet your trip will be like our Tesla OC to LV trip... The EASIEST most enjoyable LV drive EVER !!!
    2. Go to EV Trip Planner and enter your trip, speed multiplier = 1.1, P85D mode and 19" or 21" tires, cabin & outdoor air temps, and cargo load. It is BRILLIANT at calculating your consumption and charging... and will estimate how much charge you'll have when you arrive at Barstow and Las Vegas.
    3. Enter your trip into your Tesla navigation and it will also estimate your charge at Barstow and Las Vegas
    4. Don't charge to 100% unless these estimate you'll need to. We left Newport Beach with 90% and had 24% charge remaining at Barstow. We didn't get half way through our FAST 500-calorie lunches at El Pollo Loco when in just 20 minutes my Tesla iOS app said we had enough to get to Primm. AMAZING. We let our P85D charge another 10 minutes while we finished our lunch "just in case" we needed more charge. Glad we did because we hit a STRONG headwind going to Primm which I counteracted by "drafting" a Mercedes Sprinter van going 75 mph using AutoPilot set at 2. Had same headwind problem on return leg but started with 90% each leg even though EVtripplanner and Tesla navigation estimated we wouldn't need the additional power. Recommend you check for headwinds using weather or WindAlert apps... or just take a few minutes longer to charge to 90% so you can travel at full speed with zero stress.
    5. skip Rancho Cucamonga SC unless EVTripPlanner or Tesla navigation send you there. But if they tell you to stop in RC be sure to visit N7 Creamery & Coffee for AMAZING lattes, teas and liquid nitrogen cooled ice creams. Absolutely worth it and a quick walk from the RC SC
    6. skip Primm SC unless LV SC isn't along your route. Marginal restaurants, outlet mall with retail prices, etc. Keep moving.
    7. go to Container Park while at LC SC. Check out cool items made from recycled liquor and beer bottles at BluMarble store which is a very short walk from the LV SC
    8. adjust your speed by watching your estimated charge remaining at each leg of your destination. If estimated charge is falling, reduce speed OR draft another vehicle. If rising, speed up to the point where you're stressing you're going to get a speeding ticket
    9. if you're speeding, use AutoPilot behind a sacraficial speeding "rabbit" so he/she will get ticket. Also, run Waze for Tesla tesla-waze.excelsis.com/ on your P85D's browser so you know where the speed traps are. Make this one of your Tesla web browser Favorites.
    Enjoy your trip. Our OC to LV trip was absolutely positively incredible. Made us appreciate just how game changing our Model S was not only around town but for road trips!
     
    • Love x 2
  12. Lazenby

    Lazenby Member

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    Love the detailed advice-- thank you! The one thing with me is that with my previous cars I was used to driving 90mph in the desert and not worrying at all about what level my AC is at. If I charge to 90% in Barstow and re-charge in Primm, am I right that I shouldn't have to worry at all about speed/AC?
     
  13. BrokerDon

    BrokerDon Member

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    I'm not sure about driving 90 mph but you could adjust the speed multiplier = 1.1 in EVTripPlanner to see what it computes... Then use that info while adjusting your speed by watching your estimated charge remaining to your destination while you drive. If estimated charge is falling, reduce speed OR draft another vehicle. If rising, speed up to the point where you're stressing you're going to get a speeding ticket
     
  14. aus

    aus Member

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    My buddy just went to LV from Yorba Linda area 2 weeks ago. He said the chargers are Barstow were SLOW. Not sure what was going on that weekend. There were 5 cars there and he left at 6AM.

    As for going 90mph... good luck. And for the people who don't know, 75mph from LA/OC to Vegas is SLOW. Cruising speed is 80-85mph with runs to 90 for passing.
     
  15. Lump

    Lump Active Member

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    Since its your first trip its prudent to be cautious, I charge for 30 minutes in Barstow then 10 minutes in Primm driving 90mph then arrive at hotel valet, always watch the weather for headwinds driving thru the desert.
     
  16. Mark Z

    Mark Z Active Member

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    The best part of entering your destination into the navigation is the vehicle will give great estimates of the charge expected at the destination. If it seems too low, then either charge up more or set the navigation to a closer Supercharger.

    Keep in mind, when we first took our Vegas drives in 2012 and 2013, there was just the Barstow Supercharger. The only concern was having a full charge from Vegas to Barstow. Back then I charged up overnight at the RV Park at Circus Circus. We had to plan ahead, since the navigation didn't calculate the amount of charge left at the destination. Today, the car will inform you to slow down to reach the destination.

    There are so many options today; so use the navigation, relax and enjoy the drive.
     
  17. Tree95

    Tree95 Member

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    Nooooooo. I could tell from your original post that you planned to drive fast and kept reading to see you confirm it.

    The A/C doesn't matter, but speed absolutely devastates range. Speeding uphill will leave you and your buddies on the side of the road calling for a tow. There is no way you can charge enough in Barstow to get to Primm at 90 mph.
     
  18. TaoJones

    TaoJones Beyond Driven

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    The adage to charge more often for less time at each SC has been proven wise - especially when one combines speed and net positive elevation.

    The trick is that Nav/Trip Planner won't show all the SCs unless you tap "Remove Charging Stops" or similar in order to see ALL the SCs.

    Evtripplanner.com also helpful, and is evocative of the second adage that comes to mind after some years of driving floaty things on the ocean - avoid sole dependence upon one navigational aid.

    To that end, for trips through unfamiliar areas, I mount my iPhone with Waze running adjacent to the MCU. It has helped.
     
  19. Barry

    Barry Member

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    #19 Barry, May 5, 2016
    Last edited: May 5, 2016
    Driving faster than 75 mph is counterproductive to your overall time. Once you get above that speed, you're burning energy faster than the supercharger will replace it. the only time it's "cost-effective" to drive faster than 75 is if your next SC stop will be for an extended period, such as a meal, where your not concerned with standing around wiating for enough charge.

    A warning about drafting - be VERY careful. Some truckers will not tolerate it. I just had a trip where I was getting low on charge and drafted a truck with TACC set to 3, so not very close. After a couple of minutes, the guy slammed his brake on in front of me and started going 40 mph. So, I went around him. Then, he pulled up right on my ass for a couple of minutes and finally passed me again. I really thought he was going to clip me when he pulled into the left lane. If I had a dashcam, I would have called 911 on him. I was vacillating on getting a dashcam, and this is what made be decide to order one!
     
  20. Mark Z

    Mark Z Active Member

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    After reading previous posts, I forgot to mention: The only way we were able to make it from Vegas to Barstow on one cold night was to drive at 65 mph with the heater off part of the time while driving in headwinds.

    If you REALLY want to travel between LA and Vegas quickly, consider my January drive in 2016; I drove the Escalade.
     

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