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Summer road trip

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Gizmo17, May 11, 2016.

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  1. Gizmo17

    Gizmo17 Member

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    So my wife and I have decided to take a drive to Universal this summer from NJ. Sort of a silly thought came into my head...how will I keep my car clean while on the road? I'm picturing bugs splattered all over my nosecone. Does anyone know of any products that would help me keep it clean?
    Also, any tips, suggestions or recommendations for this long trip is appreciated. I've seen some websites where they said they start driving in the middle of the night. I'm not sure if we can do that.

    Thanks
     
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  2. Blu Zap

    Blu Zap Grinning member

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    Hi Gizmo. We have done a couple of trips up and down the West coast. Usual round trip about 1200 miles. I keep a "bug off" cleaner and window cleaner in the storage compartment where the kid seats would be. Some soft rags and I am ready to clean up the front at any SC. On a trip where I am at the destination for multiple days, I have sought out a hand car wash. All seems to work okay.

    Happy travels!
     
  3. JohnQ

    JohnQ Active Member

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    Just did a round trip from CT to Hilton Head. Your key to drive time is DC traffic. You can get hammered from White Marsh, MD all the way south of Fredericksburg, VA if your timing is off. We leave CT at about 5am on Friday, missing GW bridge traffic, but hitting post rush hour in B'more and DC. If you can't avoid rush hour, or times when DC to F'burg is jammed, then consider taking 301 south from B'more.

    SC spacing is fantastic, I did 80+ mph in NC and SC and never had to spend more than 35 minutes charging--except--Lumberton only has 4 charging stations and we were the fourth car there so go a slow charge for a while. Ride the bottom of the pack so that you get the fastest charge times possible. I shot for 20 miles remaining pulling into a station and was always above 10.

    With a 30 minute wait at a supercharger I was able to clean my windshield easily with water and a paper towel. Same with nosecone. If you don't let the bugs bake on then it's really not an issue removing them. Even cleaned my wheels while waiting to give me something to do.

    Don't know if you'll be overnighting or driving straight through. If overnighting, charge before you turn in for the night so that the battery will be up to temp for the fastest charge. Probably not an issue for summertime but it's a good habit. Or, find a hotel with a Level 2 charger and just leave it plugged in overnight.
     
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  4. Sethsla

    Sethsla Member

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    #4 Sethsla, May 12, 2016
    Last edited: May 12, 2016
    Car cleaning: I travel with a small box filled with a spray bottle (from Home Depot) containing Ultima waterless car wash (from Amazon) and some microfiber towels in the "frunk." That stuff is amazing at cleaning, dissolving bugs and dirt, and actually smells good to boot! I have some Invisible Glass cleaner windshield spray in the frunk as well. When I supercharge, I often give the front of the car a quick cleaning. Enjoy the ride in your beautiful clean machine.
     
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  5. grichard

    grichard Member De-Luxe

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    I just take mine to a u-squirt-em and keep a couple of microfiber cloths in the trunk for drying.
     
  6. hsctiger93

    hsctiger93 Member

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    We took the drive from Richmond to Orlando to Jupiter Island back to Richmond over 2014 Thanksgiving holiday. I have no comment on how to keep your car clean, but can share a little on the trip...
    -Points about DC traffic are quite valid. Barring some kind of miracle you should expect the HOV lane to be headed in the wrong direction and you should expect the highway lanes to remain clogged from about 8am until around midnight. Problem is you have as many as 6 lanes headed south that turn into 3 just south of Fredericksburg. Too many cars, not enough pavement.
    -The NC Superchargers aren't in great spots. I recall both are in parking lots of steakhouses. Just not much to do or see. Perfectly safe, though.
    -The Santee South Carolina SC is in the parking lot of a hotel. It's decent but noisy. We slept there on the return home. Well, I wouldn't say I slept. Restaurant in the hotel is nice.
    -Try to make it to Savannah, GA if you can on the first day. SC is on the first floor of a parking deck in the airport. Just stay downtown by the river and you'll be close to lots of great hotels and restaurants. Savannah was a highlight of our trip.
    -Once in FL, your SC options open up.

    Didn't run into any ICE-ing problems and the only time an SC almost got full was Santee. In fact, the St. Augustine outlet mall SC had a guard and orange cones blocking spaces for Tesla owners on the day we went through there (day after Black Friday). That one was my wife's favorite.

    The nice thing now is you will have absolutely ZERO range anxiety with the number of new SC's out there. I think one of our Florida stretches was close to 200 miles and with my lead foot we rolled in with about 20 miles to spare.
     
  7. mikeash

    mikeash Active Member

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    You may be interested in the post I made about a trip I did from DC to South Florida, where I did a brief review of all the Superchargers I hit along the way. This will cover most of the ones you'll use:

    Holiday trip report

    If you stop at the Savannah charger, I'd recommend reading the directions listed on PlugShare. It's not easy to find the first time using just the map in the car. All of the other ones are easily accessible and present no trouble.

    I second the recommendations to try to plan around DC traffic. I hope you have Autopilot, because that will make life a lot nicer for you when you have to fight it. You're not doomed, in any case, just try to avoid peak times. I'd suggest hitting DC either between 11AM and 2PM, or after 7PM, if possible. (Or before 7AM, but that's crazy talk.) If you're coming from NJ, then a reasonably early morning departure should get you here around midday and you should do OK. See if you can hit the Glen Allen Supercharger for lunch time and proceed from there, unless you really want to leave super early.
     
  8. mrjedistud

    mrjedistud Member

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    Good info, I'll actually be doing a NY to Richmond VA run shortly. I am debating whether to run straight to the Newark, DE SC or stop in NJ for a partial charge. Its about 170 miles and I have about 250 of rated range at 100% SOC (P85). In the winter I know I won't make it but assuming that temps are above 60 and roads are dry I should be fine.

    Thoughts?
     
  9. Gizmo17

    Gizmo17 Member

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    Thanks for all the great tips. I've heard DC traffic can be nasty...I thought I was used to bad traffic being close to NYC!!
    I'll have to stop by Costco for some extra microfiber clothes for the trip. I have some from "Chemical Guys" but not enough to keep the car clean for a week.
    Oh, did I mention I'll have 3 kids in the back seat??
     
  10. cman8

    cman8 Member

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    Get yourself a good waterless wash like chemical guys Eco smart and a lot of premium microfibers. Works great do it all the time and beads the car like crazy.
     
  11. CHG-ON

    CHG-ON Still in love after all these miles

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    I use Ulitma Waterless also. I also like Griot's waterless. Just spray, relax as it soaks, wipe, repeat if necessary.

    I'm obsessed. So I have a complete waterless kit in the frunk (several MF towels, paper towels, waterless, glass, interior cleaners), along with charging, jacks and tire repair, emergency, impromptu camping, full bar with ice maker (I wish). I hate driving a dirty car. Always have. They just drive better when they are clean!
     
  12. SPXMike

    SPXMike Member

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    I don't have the waterless stuff yet but I do have the jack, tire repair, torque wrench, and a bunch of homemade charging adapters. I'll have to check out the waterless cleaners
     
  13. redy

    redy Member

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    I think it should be fine. A month ago I did a 170 mile trip to dover from Brooklyn in a 90D. I was down from 290 to 100 miles or so. Drove mostly at 65-70 MPh in AP.
     
  14. Papafox

    Papafox Active Member

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    I did a 50 state tour in my S last summer and used the combination of waterless wash and good microfiber towels. My car is blue in color and would show off scratches, so I made a point of wiping with no pressure to remove the worst of the dirt and only when grit was 100% gone did I put pressure on the microfiber towels. I was very careful to move from top of the car down and never reuse a portion of a microfiber towel that could contain contaminants. Also, the car had Opticoat on it, so no waxing was needed either. I brought LOTS of microfiber towels to last me between laundry moments (which were very few).
    www.theelectricroadtrip.com
    Have a great trip!
     
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  15. Gizmo17

    Gizmo17 Member

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    Wow, 50 state tour, that's awesome! I also have the blue color, I plan to order some waterless wash products and bring some MF towels. Just can't pack too much since I'm packing for 5. I did not do the Opti-coat it yet, I'm still on the fence about it. After the car purchase, dash cam and other accessories, I decided to hold off.

    I came across this useful site with road trips suggestions for anyone looking for ideas: Boston to miami: road trip down the atlantic coast (1 week) Roadtrip Itinerary - Roadtrippers
    They also have an iPhone app.
     
  16. PhillyGuy

    PhillyGuy New Member

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    Great idea. You will long remember your trip. In May-June 2014 I drove from Philly to San Jose while doing side trips to Nat. Parks plus other stops. Met a lot of interesting people at the Chargers. I would be glad to share my notes and trip summary if interested. I had my 85D just a few weeks before the trip so it was a great learning experience. Trip was a total of 8, 236 miles.
     
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  17. PhillyGuy

    PhillyGuy New Member

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    You should be good to go to the Newark SC. Watch your chart on the ending miles and if it drops slow down to 60-65 for a while.
    I just drove from Newark to the Glen Ellen (Richmond) SC. No problem.
     
  18. PhillyGuy

    PhillyGuy New Member

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    This friday we drove from Philly to Williamsburg, VA for the Tesla Rally there. I stopped at the Newark SC for a full charge. We left about 1:30 Pm and headed for the Glen Ellen SC. The GPS had us divert to I-895 at Baltimore. It then took us down I- 97 towards Annapolis. At first I thought this is great. No DC traffic. Wrong. As we were vectored off I-97 towards Richmond it was 2way roads and stop lights with massive traffic. 5 hours from Newark to Glenn Ellen. Hope you do better.
     
  19. ElectricTundra

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    Our longest trips so far have been MN > FL. I found travel by supercharger much more relaxing and enjoyable than our typical grab gas and hurry back on the road again routine. Getting out of the car for 15 - 40 minutes every 2 or 3 hours has very worthwhile benefits. We only had one instance of range anxiety and that was Chattanooga to Birmingham via a friend's house on Lake Guntersville. We arrived at the charger in Birmingham with something like 9 miles left. Next time we'll drive a few more miles to charge in Huntsville or Decatur.

    The biggest issue for us was figuring out where to go at some supercharger stops and if we should eat where we were or if one of the unknown restaurants at the next stop was really good. Maybe by the time of your trip there will be more reviews and other information on chargerville.

    Chargerville
     
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  20. Gizmo17

    Gizmo17 Member

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    Wow, Philly to San Jose...now that's a road trip! I'm sure I will long remember it, even on 1 hour trips, my 5 year old asks "are we there yet?"!! LOL!! It'd be great if you can share your notes with me. Thank you!
     

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