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Roadster 113 Checking In

Discussion in 'Roadster' started by Tex EV, May 4, 2016.

  1. Tex EV

    Tex EV Member

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    Hello, long-time forum lurker and now owner here. As of last weekend, Roadster 113 lives under my roof in Houston. :cool: Big thanks to this forum for the knowledge and resources available which helped me make an informed purchase. Looking forward to many good years with this amazing machine.

    Couple of questions:
    Does it make any difference to battery health to charge with the 120V cable at 15A versus my L2([email protected]) Clipper Creek unit? My daily commute is only 60 miles round-trip, so I can get by with the lower rate.

    Does one ever get used to the amount of attention this car draws? As an introvert, it has been a bit overwhelming ;).

     
  2. AEdennis

    AEdennis Active Member

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    @Tex EV Congratulations. The Roadster looks nice beside that Volt.

    Get yourself an OVMS box and see...

    We charge my wife's Roadster on Daily charge at 40A and it's been fine... She used to have a 60 mile roundtrip and we would charge it every other day. However, others recommend a daily charge.

    I've had some funny problems that seem to have solved itself when we switched from charging everyday to charging when we have less than 100 miles left on range, sometimes let it drop down low, but not too low. There are a series of posts in July 2014 that I went through to fix the decline in miles over the first 10 months of CPO ownership.
     
    • Like x 1
  3. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    Definitely charge with your 220V. Can you do 30amps? I believe that's the best amps that puts less stress on the grid but the most efficient in transferring the energy. If you charge off of 110v it takes quite some time to charge and the car never has adequate time to balance the pack. Tesla sees many Roadsters with out of balance packs from owners who charge only off of 110V. My commute is the same + 10 miles, I charge at [email protected]

    Also know how to do a cool-down cycle, you can search to learn more. This helps keep the temps on the battery cooler instead of having them heat soak in warm coolant. If you're on 220v and you connect the charger up, if the battery pack is above 26C, which it would be if you were doing that commute on a warm day, the HVAC system would kick on to chill the battery pack driving the temps down below 26C.

    Yes, it always gets attention. Even from the bums on the street who give the thumbs up and say great car! I think that's pretty unique. Makes you feel like a movie star. Get ready for people taking picks and making movies of you while driving.
     
    • Like x 1
  4. nsxpert

    nsxpert Member

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    Seems like lots of conflicting advice about this on TMC. Does anyone really know what's the best charging method?
    Mine is on a timed 10pm charge everyday. (220 / 12amp)
    Not a good idea?
     
  5. hcsharp

    hcsharp Active Member

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    Tesla will tell you that it's better to charge every day. They know more about this than anybody. I believe they're right but not everyone agrees. The type of cells in the Roadster prefer many shallow charge/discharge cycles over fewer larger cycles. This reduces a type of battery degradation caused by micro-cracking. It's also better for the whole drive train including the battery to charge every day because the voltage is higher while driving which results in lower temperatures. High temps are your battery's worst enemy.
     
    • Like x 3
  6. gregd

    gregd Member

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    I charge at 24A / 240V at home, or more often, 30A / 208V at work (L2 charging). As noted, if you only charge at 120v the car won't balance the pack, and it also won't kick in the active temperature management, both of which will reduce the pack's long term life. Once in a while is fine, but 240v at something reasonable is best for the long term.

    And the gawking comes free with the car. I had a delivery van driver turn left in front of me (I was stopped 1st in line at a light), and thought he'd run the van off the road as he turned and stared, jaw hanging down, at my car. Totally made my day.

    Welcome to the club!

    Greg.

    p.s. Excellent choice of color! Same as mine :)
     
    • Like x 1
  7. josh-io

    josh-io Member

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    Jun 21, 2015
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    Congratulations, Tex EV! I have Roadsters #117 and #483. My dad has #858. I think they're the greatest cars ever made.

    I would learn to enjoy the attention, since it never stops. It has caused me to interact with people who I would otherwise have ignored. So that's fun.

    If you don't have them already, two accessories that have served me very well are:
    ExtendView Mirrors (TM)
    and
    Tesla — Carbon Fiber Door Sills

    Especially the mirrors. Safety is an issue in a car as low as the Roadster, so drive defensively, as though it's a motorcycle.
     
    • Like x 1
  8. AEdennis

    AEdennis Active Member

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    Oh. I forgot to mention, if you plan on going anywhere...

    Pick up both CANs from @hcsharp

    As for advice... I got mine from my Service Center and from the Service Advisor that owned a Roadster (as well as the tech/shop foreman that specializes in Roadsters...)
     
  9. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

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    Agreed. Those add on mirrors make driving the Roadster much safer in my opinion. Had them for over a year.
     
  10. Habious

    Habious Member

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    It's unusual for me to take the car out somewhere and NOT have someone make some sort of a comment about it. A "Nice car" comment, at a minimum. More often than not, though, its more like a "What the heck is that?", which winds up evolving into a conversation about EVs, charging, range, performance, etc.

    I've never been a "Look at me! Look at me!" sort of guy but, yeah, this car gets attention...like it or not.
     
    • Like x 2
  11. bolosky

    bolosky Member

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    I think that people fret about charging rates and strategies all the time, and for the most part it doesn't really matter all that much. I've charged 220v 40A every day but delayed to 1AM, I've got > 100K miles and nearly 7 years and have lost about 12% of capacity. If I were you, I'd hook up the 220v charger and then stop worrying much about it.

    The attention never goes away, but you do start getting used to it. I have people come up to me in parking lots and shyly ask if it's OK to take a picture or ask me about the car, and I tell them that I'm used to it, it just goes with owning a car like that.
     
    • Like x 1
  12. Tex EV

    Tex EV Member

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    Location:
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    15A/240V is the best I can do at home currently, via a 3.6kW Clipper Creek EVSE + a CAN JR. Good to know that thermal management is only enabled with 240V. IIRC the car was a lot quieter when on the 120V plug, the one time I tried it.

    Will definitely look into the add on mirrors. The blind spot on the driver's side has been the worst.

    Most memorable people interactions this past week:
    "How do you like your Lotus? ... Wait a minute... what is that?" - random guys at restaurant
    "Is that the new Tesla?!?!" - female coworker across office parking lot
    And a neighbor I've never met yelled at me for running a stop sign I actually stopped for. I guess she assumed I rolled through because there wasn't any engine noise...

    Thanks for the welcome!
     
  13. bolosky

    bolosky Member

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    I have the stock mirrors. When I first got the Roadster, merging left was really scary, because even with looking over my shoulder there was an enormous blind spot. I would usually accelerate hard before merging just in case someone was there.

    Then, from reading this very Roadster forum, someone explained that the way my mom taught me to adjust mirrors is really not all that great. You should turn the mirror much more inward than you might think. Lean your head against the driver's side window, then adjust the mirror so that you can just see the edge of your car with your head there (in the Roadster, this will take several iterations because it's got a manual adjust mirror). For the passenger's side, lean your head way to the right, basically over the e-brake and do the same thing (a friend comes in really helpful here).

    Before I merge, I look in the appropriate mirror, move my head a little from left to right, and if I don't see anyone I'm good. I no longer look over my shoulder at all (in any car, but especially the Roadster).

    It's kind of a weird sensation at first if you've been driving for decades with the standard adjustment like I had, but I really think that this is the best piece of driving advice that I've gotten in a long while. And, it works great with the standard Roadster mirrors.

    I took my 16 year old son to a emergency driving skills class (where they had him do stuff like brake hard and turn, run on a skid pad, drive on a course while texting, etc.) They took the parents aside and said many things, but one of them was the same advice I gave you about the mirror adjustment. They said that the state driving test requires you to look over your shoulder, but that that should be the last time you ever do it (because it's unnecessary, and takes your eyes off of where you're going for longer). I agree.
     
  14. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    • Like x 2
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  15. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    ...as for the Roadster not losing its acceleration performance after 70mph, I'm fine with that. This car is a true sprinter, that's its specialty, not a car that keeps pulling which eventually can get you into a huge mess. I've had my high speed fun on the street and looking back now it was quite stupid, but that's just a kid testing the waters. Yes I wish that sweet spot went up to 80mph, just for a highway emergency, but I'm not dissatisfied at all. I love the car.

    The steering wheel I do enjoy, it has those upper notches for good hand holds while pushing back and forth though the corners. Would be nice to throw something different but I don't want to loose the airbag. I have no complaints, never thought it looked cheap.

    As for the battery range and estimate. Note that you take the range mode charge number right as soon as the charge has stopped, don't wait for balancing. You also want to drive the car ASAP, the car is bleeding the harmful high SOC off the pack to prolong its life. I haven't done a range mode charge in 1.5 years, I try to limit those as much as I can. Now when you standard mode charge, don't take the reading or miles as soon as the charge stops, its not a real number. The battery pack needs to balance.... depending how far out of balance it can take longer. For my pack which I keep in balance I allow it to balance / it can take anywhere from 30 mins to over an hour. Then you can take your reading. Good rule of thumb, wait one hour. But allow the car to balance before you go on your journey. Its ok if you miss a couple cycles, it'll catch up next time you balance it. The battery miles even the CAC can differ quite a bit from car to car. Some packs / bricks / cells were stronger, some were weaker. I had an internal fault with my pack @ around 18k or so, Tesla ended up replacing the entire pack for me under goodwill. I was past my factory warranty by 3 months. So they do keep you covered, love the customer service. I then became very good at managing my battery pack. It was a refurbished pack but the CAC reached at one point as high as what the best brand new pack would reach, 160 CAC. That's the highest in health it can go. I did cool-downs any chance I did, kept the SOC down between 50-65% whenever I wasn't driving it (luckily my commute allowed it to land there when I got home), and didn't ask much from the car in terms of power when the SOC was below 50% which can be stressful the lower you go with the cells. I also charge the latest time I could, allowed the pack to balance properly, and did minimal range mode charges. The pack when it did reach 160 CAC only charged to 184 ideal miles in std. mode. Now at 60k on the car or 42k on this battery my CAC is 149.50 and consistently my ideal miles are 180.

    But getting back to your pack, try balancing it. Can take a week, can take a month.... Also I don't know if you did this, dump your logs and view what the CAC is. There's some good tools forum members have contributed over time here which are very very helpful, such as the VMSparser and other tools.
     
  16. Tex EV

    Tex EV Member

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    I just tried the mirror technique on the way to the office, and it works! So much better.

    I agree with the steering. Loving the direct feel and connection to the road. My Volt feels like a bus after a few days in the Roadster. Fighter jet versus 737.

    Haven't tried to range charge yet since I only expect to drive it to another city once or twice a year. On a standard charge, it has been stopping at 181 miles. Showed 184 after the first charge. According to the charge history, it hadn't been properly charged in over a month before getting to me. The dealer it was at only had its 120V plug and didn't bother to plug it in. I'm assuming that like my other EVs, the range indicated is just an estimate based on recent driving style. Will dump the logs this weekend and play with the data.
     
  17. simonog

    simonog Member

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    @wiztecy: how do you make the car do a cooldown?
     
  18. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    #18 wiztecy, May 8, 2016
    Last edited: May 8, 2016
    Just search for cooldown or thermal management in the Roadster thread, there's plenty of information there. But putting your car on a 220v charger that's 16amps or more will kick it on if the pack is hot.
     
  19. gregd

    gregd Member

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    It's easy if you have an OVMS module, which I don't (yet). The other way is to start a Range-mode charge for about a half hour or so. Just don't forget to stop it! Range mode puts an emphasis on keeping the battery cool, so to get maximum charge into it. The side effect is that it cools the pack off nicely.

    As noted, you will need a higher power charging outlet; mine is 240v at 24a, but I believe a bit less is ok. Just not the outlet you plug a lamp into.
     
  20. simonog

    simonog Member

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    Thank you. I do have OVMS so knew I could instruct it to COOLDOWN; just didn't know what to do other than using OVMS.

    Tried it yesterday. Getting error 1463 every minute. Now wondering if something has failed after recent service in coolant change.
     

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