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Higher energy usage in winter?

Discussion in 'Model S: Battery & Charging' started by MrPinrel, Nov 16, 2014.

  1. MrPinrel

    MrPinrel Member

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    Now that winter is coming back, I have the feeling that my Model S is using more battery in the winter. The battery heater seems to come on more aggressively, regen limitation stays on for longer. In the last couple of days of city driving my average energy usage has been over 450.

    Has anybody else noticed this? Is it possible that in recent firmware updates Tesla has altered the battery management for cold temperature?
     
  2. stevezzzz

    stevezzzz R;SigS;P85D;SigX

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    There are plenty of threads on this subject already. Short answer: yes, cold weather has an adverse effect on consumption and range. It's a fact of life.

    Recommend you search the archives for a wealth of information on the subject.
     
  3. Johan

    Johan Took a TSLA bear test. Came back negative.

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    Anything from 10-30% more yes, due to a many different number of factors: temperature you have to worm coupe to, temp. effects on battery efficiency, road surface with more resistanse in different ways, colder air is denser and gives more drag, etc.
     
  4. MrPinrel

    MrPinrel Member

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    I am sorry if I didn't explain it correctly, I am aware of the higher energy usage in winter. My question was, is the car using more energy this winter compared to last winter. I understand it is difficult to make a straightforward comparison because conditions will never be exactly the same, but it just feels like it is using more energy than last winter.
     
  5. Johan

    Johan Took a TSLA bear test. Came back negative.

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    Without being in KC I'm quite sure that it is best explained by different years and different winters.
     
  6. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    Last winter was warmer than this winter is supposed to be. Also: Did you check your tire pressures? You need to raise them in the winter to compensate for the cold weather. (I know I sound like a broken record about this)
     
  7. bigsmooth125

    bigsmooth125 Member

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    It seems like it to me. Recently, temps have been in the 40's consistently and each time I get into my car, it's warmer inside than I expect and the energy limiter is on, suggesting that the battery has been warmed.
     
  8. MrPinrel

    MrPinrel Member

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    I have 19inch Michelins and usually have the tire pressure at 45psi. should I set them higher in winter?
     
  9. scottm

    scottm Active Member

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    No.
     
  10. SlyWombat

    SlyWombat Member

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    No, but check the pressure, if you did not add any air, then the pressure is probably down. But remember as you drive the tires warm up, so do not add to max when fully cold, but check the pressure after you drive and in the winter you will probably need to add a few pounds.
     
  11. stevezzzz

    stevezzzz R;SigS;P85D;SigX

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    And I apologize for getting on you about starting what I saw as another thread on an old topic. As for your actual question: if true, what could be contributing to the car using more energy this winter than last, other than the obvious possibility of weather differences year-to-year?
     
  12. Andyw2100

    Andyw2100 Well-Known Member

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    I don't even have my model S yet, so take this with the appropriate grain of salt, but perhaps the original poster was suggesting things like possible changes in Version 6.0. For example, if Tesla decided that it was better for the long-term health of the battery to operate at, say, a slightly warmer temperature, resulting in a little more energy used to get the battery up to that temperature, and they implemented that change in version 6.0. Things along those lines.
     
  13. ghost640

    ghost640 Member

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    I've had my "Low Tire Pressure" warning wink on and off a few times since it's gotten cold - they are at 42 warm, I'll get them up to 45. I've also seen "Regenerative Braking Disabled" a lot lately.
     
  14. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    Actually you should add about 3 or 4 psi. The reason for this is to help the tires cut through the film of water that is on top of the ice or packed snow.
     
  15. Canuck

    Canuck Active Member

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    Yes, the cold weather definitely takes a lot more power. That's what's so great about Tesla with the battery of an appropriate size to deal with the cold weather. But it really sucks in the winter with a Nissan Leaf.
     
  16. iffatall

    iffatall Member

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    This thread has got me super confused now. Let's have a consensus answer for the two questions below:

    The recommended 45 psi for each of the four tires are for
    A. cool tires (after sitting still a few hours)
    B. hot tires (after driving 30+ mins)

    In winter, should the recommended pressure (as defined above) be higher than 45 psi?
     
  17. Johan

    Johan Took a TSLA bear test. Came back negative.

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    The answer is A - cool tires. Pressures are always given for cold tires. Since they will likely be cooler in the winter more air is required to get to 45 psi. Air shrinks when it gets colder. So if they were 45 psi in the summer, even if there has been absolutely no leakage, you still have to add air when it gets colder. Remeber the gas equation, it's been a long time since I was in school but I think it goes pV=nRT?

    Also, I find that using 48-50 psi in my winter tires gives me better handling especially if there is snow on the road, and since the winter tires are softer anyway I don't find it gives me a harsher ride. I run Nokian studless winter tires.
     
  18. AndreyATC

    AndreyATC Member

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    My $0.02
    It's been in 20s-30s where i live
    My commute is short and i normally average 280-310wh/m on roundtrip
    Now it went to 340+, no matter how easy i am on the right pedal
    I dont use any heat, car is parked over night in garage with 65F+ temps

    Seems odd to lose range like that
     
  19. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    Wasn't there supposed to be some kind of indicator on the energy bar about cold weather's effect on range introduced in 5.9 or something along those lines? It's been pretty warm since then up until recently, drove this morning in 16F weather and did not see anything, although power usage was a bit higher than normal obviously.
     
  20. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    This is correct. You never want to check or adjust pressures when the tires are hot (exception: you have a leak and need to make it to the tire repair shop). Adding 3 or 4 psi in the winter is a good idea because the added pressure helps wipe away the film of water that's often over ice or packed snow. Also if you are inflating indoors where it's warmer, you need to adjust for the contraction that will take place when the car goes outside.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Not odd at all:

    1. The oil in the reduction gear adds a lot of friction when cold.

    2. Cold air is denser making it harder to push though (but easier to take off if you're piloting).

    3. The cold tires add a bit of rolling resistance until they have been driven far enough to warm up.

    4. Even with range mode on, there is still some battery heating taking place.

    5. If you haven't adjust the tires upwards, the air will contract in them making them underinflated when actually driving.
     

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