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ROAD TRIP EXPERIENCE QUESTIONS

  • I almost NEVER achieve the projected mileage efficiency (~230wh/mile) on a road trip

    Votes: 20 55.6%
  • I feel safe reaching my destination when the Tesla projected NAV battery % at destination is 8%

    Votes: 16 44.4%
  • My mileage efficiency drops dramatically when I exceed 55 MPH

    Votes: 12 33.3%
  • At 75 MPH or above my mileage efficiency drops to 350 wh/mile or worse

    Votes: 15 41.7%
  • Tesla NAV projected battery % is often 2-5% higher than my actual final battery % at the destination

    Votes: 4 11.1%
  • My mileage drops dramatically when climbing serious altitude on a road trip

    Votes: 15 41.7%
  • Tesla needs to provide navigation support with charging from different start points and waypoints.

    Votes: 15 41.7%
  • At high outdoor temperature my AC sometimes stops working for 10-15 minutes

    Votes: 1 2.8%
  • Tesla supercharger stations should always have trash cans and 24 hour bathroom access

    Votes: 19 52.8%
  • When the outside temperature drops below 80 I sometimes see the AC stop working for 10-15 minutes

    Votes: 2 5.6%
  • Tesla supercharging should ALWAYS tell me what the cost per kwh of charging is

    Votes: 8 22.2%
  • Tesla needs to allow their NAV to include way stops to safely navigate sightseeing

    Votes: 16 44.4%

  • Total voters
    36

Han Solo

New Member
Jul 6, 2021
2
-8
La Jolla
I just completed my first road trip from San Diego to Dallas and back again taking different routes. Each way the trip was done in 3 days with an average of 4-7 hours of driving a day. This drive occurred while temperatures in the Southwest soared to as high as 117. I found the supercharger stations easy to find and well located. Our trip went from San Diego - Tuscon - Las Cruces NM - Marfa Texas - Dallas Texas and back from Dallas - Santa Fe - Tuscon - San Diego.

CHARGING Superchargers were well placed and easily less than 200 miles apart. In fact, the Tesla NAV seemed to recommend charging stops at between 88-200 miles with the average stop being about 180 miles. Many destinations had Tesla destination charges allowing for an easy charge to 100% overnight. Tesla destination chargers are FREE which is an added bonus. Some stations are public and don't require a stay, others say they require a stay, but probably don't monitor it. Generally I found most destination chargers were NOT in use so it wasn't hard to charge overnight. Most superchargers are 120 KWH, but a few were 250 KWH. Regardless charging to 80% was fast (20-30 minutes usually), but charging to 100% takes a lot longer (an additional 20-30 minutes). Please NOTE it can sometimes take a little bit of looking to find where the the chargers actually are since there is NO signage and the NAV usually gets you close, but not always exactly where the chargers are. If you see a Holiday Inn or hotel it's often in their parking lot.

Most stops are engineered so that you only charge to 80% or less. You will be told that you have sufficient charge to continue, WELL BEFORE you reach a full charge. I recommend doing a reality check and seeing just what your battery % will be at the next charger and destination and deciding how comfortable you are with that BEFORE leaving the charger. More than once we wished we had charged a little more, because it would have made us A LOT more comfortable.

One hotel used EV GO, but it was FREE EVGO after you set up a free account. BRING AN ADAPTER to use with regular chargers for non Tesla chargers. I had a Chaedmo adapter with me for regular NON Tesla DC Fast charging, but NEVER needed to use it. Besides it sounds like that kind of charging is NOT as safe for the battery if used frequently.

NOT ONCE did a supercharger ever tell me BEFORE I started charging how much the rate is per KWH.

NOT ONCE after I charged was I told what this rate is, but it is calculable from the information provided. My guess is the cost is about 27-37 cents per KWH.

Supercharger stations were often at Holiday Inn's and were NOT as advertised always in places where you could do a lot of stuff (you ARE NOT going to dine at Holiday Inn). Worse, NONE of the supercharger stations had a garbage can and NONE of them have their own bathrooms. This isn't a huge problem if there is a public bathroom, but there was at least one stop on the way to Tuscon where the hotel DID NOT provide a public bathroom (actually had a sign that said so). Tesla needs to FIX those situations. Also you have a problem if you are charging in a mall area when ALL the stores are closed which means your bathroom is closed too. So BRING YOUR OWN FOOD and don't assume you can go eat at a Tesla Supercharger station. In fact, you might want to be prepared for the possibility that the charging station will NOT have a toilet. Most charges are only 20-30 minutes long so you don't have that much time to go dine or do something else.

A neat trick to find destination chargers is simply to go on your app under charging and scroll down. When you do this it will show you nearby superchargers and destination chargers and if you click on any of them it will send this destination to your NAV so you can find it in today's NAV history. Don't do this while driving as this new destination will override whatever destination you currently have.

PLANNING AND RANGE ANXIETY
It was NOT possible to plan this easily using google maps, as the google interface sometimes does and sometimes does not allow you to show superchargers en route. The Tesla NAV DOES NOT allow you to pick a different starting location than where you currently are , NOR does it allow you to put in multiple way stops for sightseeing. This means that when Tesla NAV shows you what your charge will be when you end your trip, it assumes that you will have a destination charger there, since I have had charge levels easily less than 10% and sometimes as low as 5% at my destination.

Just how accurate is this destination charge percentage estimate? It's fairly accurate, but can easily be 2-6% LESS than what was projected, so if the estimate is 5% or less you could in theory be screwed. Now if you do NOT have a destination charger at this location, you MUST have a charger nearby or you need to make sure you have sufficient charge to reach another charger. Keep in mind that if this charger you are counting on is NOT a Supercharger, it will take A LONG time to add serious range. In my experience NONE of the destination charges were ever 16KWH, most were 7-10 KWH even when the app or Google said up to 16KWH. This requires that one take the extra step of LOOKING for where the next supercharger is and making sure that you have enough charge to reach it. There is NO easy way to do this other than to use Google Maps to find a supercharger or put in a destination BEYOND your actual stop to see where the next charger shows up.

I found that google maps sometimes identifies destination chargers that the native Tesla app does not identify.

MILEAGE PERFORMANCE
in my experience the rated mileage appears to assume that you are driving at about 230WH/MILE with is an impressive 4.3 KWH/mile. I find that rarely does the Tesla Y get that level of performance. More typically it is somewhere close to 350WH/mile or just 2.9 KWH/mile. This range drop means that your typical 326 projected range drops easily to under 250 miles and if you are only at 80% can drop below 200 miles. So some of the stops we were literally down to about 10-30 miles left of range which is LESS than 10% and low enough to make some of us nervous. So on a road trip, assume that you will need to stop every 170 miles are so.

So the way to tell where you are with mileage does NOT seem to be to use the range miles that shows up on the top of your monitor (this seems to assume that the remaining mileage efficiency is 230wh/mile which I already noted RARELY happens), but to see where you are range wise by using the ENERGY function and seeing just how well you are doing over the last 5 miles, last 15 miles etc and comparing this with just HOW far you need to go get to your next charge. If you use this function you will also see the WH/MILE you are averaging and be able to adjust your driving somewhat. So what I would normally do is see what my 5 mile range is expected to be and check to make sure that this is 20-30 miles HIGHER than the miles to the next destination. This is CLEARLY MORE complicated than we were told, but is the only way to be absolutely certain you aren't going to run out of charge BEFORE you reach your next destination.

Could you simply trust the system?

Yes most of the time you would be okay, but if the projected amount of charge remaining is 8% or less, I would be careful and watch this like a hawk. You can also easily adjust your driving based on seeing the energy tab and seeing how speed affects things. Another way to identify a potential problem is to watch what the predicted battery % is at your next charging stop. It will change as you drive, presumably taking into account how well or badly your actual mileage efficiency is. If it falls below 5% and you have a long ways to go, you might want to consider an early charging stop. I know I did once or twice. I might have made it, but none of us wanted to tempt fate.

My experience was that at 55 mph on a flat, I could probably get close to the rated 230WH/Mile. However, if I drive at 65 this will likely be more like 300wh/mile and at 80 (In Texas speed limits are 75 and higher) you are looking closer to 350 WH/mile or even higher. Also you LOSE a LOT when you are climbing and you lose some when the AC is cranked up to high. We would sometimes use our phone compass app to check what our current altitude is and then google the altitude for our destination to be sure we charge extra if we are going up hill. Presumably the Tesla NAV accounts for altitude climbs, but I wanted to be doubly sure.

AC AIR CONDITIONING
The Tesla Y has a heat pump and I was kind of hoping that applied to the AC as well (still don't know if it does), but yes it still uses power and so don't over do it. An easy way to see how this affects your efficiency is to use that energy tab. Also we did notice that at high outdoor temps it sometimes cut out for brief time periods (10-15 minutes). According to a Tesla rep I was told this happens, because if the battery gets too hot, it will prioritize keeping the battery at a reasonable temp over keeping you at a reasonable temp. This NEVER happened for longer than about 15 minutes even while we were driving through 117 degree weather. So it wasn't a serious problem, just noticeable and annoying. What did happens which I thought was weird is that sometimes after the outdoor temp was really high and when the car was driving and the outside temp dropped to under 80 the AC would stop working for periods of up to 15 minutes. I don't have an explanation for this as the car is PROBABLY NOT overheating.

AUTO PILOT
We found that the autopilot is a MUST on road trips particularly when you are tired and need a little help or when the driving conditions are a bit difficult due to inclement weather, curvy roads, or night time. HOWEVER, on curvy roads I noticed that the blue driving line and the Google Maps line often depart and depart significantly so that you can easily be confused about whether you are going off the road. In these cases I had to IGNORE the white lines and trust that the car was driving correctly. Tesla needs to fix this as it's NOT an issue with WAZE or GOOGLE MAPS. (see attached pictures)

NAV
We found the Tesla NAV to be accurate and to plot appropriately. I was told it even incorporates traffic data. However, one road near Marfa Texas turned out to be a dirt road for MOST of it and would NOT be driveable if it were raining. That segment of not totally completed road was about 10 miles. I don't know any way around that, because at that point we didn't have a lot of charge to detour around the dirt section and there weren't a lot of charging opportunities in this area.
 

Big Earl

bnkwupt
Supporting Member
Jul 12, 2017
5,795
10,762
Springfield, VA
Navigation display is NOT a problem. I explain this in your other thread dedicated to this perceived navigation problem.

Supercharger pricing is CLEARLY covered in the navigation system, even before you arrive. Tap the Supercharger pin on the map to see details including pricing for any Supercharger in the world. You can also see real-time usage information for any Superchargers within 300 miles of your current location. See picture:

D2235DB4-5D60-4A41-B9AE-F2312DB48081.jpeg


To see a list of all Superchargers, tap the map anywhere to bring up the map controls, then click the bottom right lightning bolt icon to display all charging stations.

79A8F7EC-8068-4382-8900-90FB3D228DE3.jpeg


I’m glad your trip went well.
 
Last edited:

mark95476

Active Member
Jun 21, 2020
1,699
1,035
Bay Area CA
Didn't read and didn't/won't vote. This new user is posting garbage.


I just completed my first road trip from San Diego to Dallas and back again taking different routes. Each way the trip was done in 3 days with an average of 4-7 hours of driving a day. This drive occurred while temperatures in the Southwest soared to as high as 117. I found the supercharger stations easy to find and well located. Our trip went from San Diego - Tuscon - Las Cruces NM - Marfa Texas - Dallas Texas and back from Dallas - Santa Fe - Tuscon - San Diego.

CHARGING Superchargers were well placed and easily less than 200 miles apart. In fact, the Tesla NAV seemed to recommend charging stops at between 88-200 miles with the average stop being about 180 miles. Many destinations had Tesla destination charges allowing for an easy charge to 100% overnight. Tesla destination chargers are FREE which is an added bonus. Some stations are public and don't require a stay, others say they require a stay, but probably don't monitor it. Generally I found most destination chargers were NOT in use so it wasn't hard to charge overnight. Most superchargers are 120 KWH, but a few were 250 KWH. Regardless charging to 80% was fast (20-30 minutes usually), but charging to 100% takes a lot longer (an additional 20-30 minutes). Please NOTE it can sometimes take a little bit of looking to find where the the chargers actually are since there is NO signage and the NAV usually gets you close, but not always exactly where the chargers are. If you see a Holiday Inn or hotel it's often in their parking lot.

Most stops are engineered so that you only charge to 80% or less. You will be told that you have sufficient charge to continue, WELL BEFORE you reach a full charge. I recommend doing a reality check and seeing just what your battery % will be at the next charger and destination and deciding how comfortable you are with that BEFORE leaving the charger. More than once we wished we had charged a little more, because it would have made us A LOT more comfortable.

One hotel used EV GO, but it was FREE EVGO after you set up a free account. BRING AN ADAPTER to use with regular chargers for non Tesla chargers. I had a Chaedmo adapter with me for regular NON Tesla DC Fast charging, but NEVER needed to use it. Besides it sounds like that kind of charging is NOT as safe for the battery if used frequently.

NOT ONCE did a supercharger ever tell me BEFORE I started charging how much the rate is per KWH.

NOT ONCE after I charged was I told what this rate is, but it is calculable from the information provided. My guess is the cost is about 27-37 cents per KWH.

Supercharger stations were often at Holiday Inn's and were NOT as advertised always in places where you could do a lot of stuff (you ARE NOT going to dine at Holiday Inn). Worse, NONE of the supercharger stations had a garbage can and NONE of them have their own bathrooms. This isn't a huge problem if there is a public bathroom, but there was at least one stop on the way to Tuscon where the hotel DID NOT provide a public bathroom (actually had a sign that said so). Tesla needs to FIX those situations. Also you have a problem if you are charging in a mall area when ALL the stores are closed which means your bathroom is closed too. So BRING YOUR OWN FOOD and don't assume you can go eat at a Tesla Supercharger station. In fact, you might want to be prepared for the possibility that the charging station will NOT have a toilet. Most charges are only 20-30 minutes long so you don't have that much time to go dine or do something else.

A neat trick to find destination chargers is simply to go on your app under charging and scroll down. When you do this it will show you nearby superchargers and destination chargers and if you click on any of them it will send this destination to your NAV so you can find it in today's NAV history. Don't do this while driving as this new destination will override whatever destination you currently have.

PLANNING AND RANGE ANXIETY
It was NOT possible to plan this easily using google maps, as the google interface sometimes does and sometimes does not allow you to show superchargers en route. The Tesla NAV DOES NOT allow you to pick a different starting location than where you currently are , NOR does it allow you to put in multiple way stops for sightseeing. This means that when Tesla NAV shows you what your charge will be when you end your trip, it assumes that you will have a destination charger there, since I have had charge levels easily less than 10% and sometimes as low as 5% at my destination.

Just how accurate is this destination charge percentage estimate? It's fairly accurate, but can easily be 2-6% LESS than what was projected, so if the estimate is 5% or less you could in theory be screwed. Now if you do NOT have a destination charger at this location, you MUST have a charger nearby or you need to make sure you have sufficient charge to reach another charger. Keep in mind that if this charger you are counting on is NOT a Supercharger, it will take A LONG time to add serious range. In my experience NONE of the destination charges were ever 16KWH, most were 7-10 KWH even when the app or Google said up to 16KWH. This requires that one take the extra step of LOOKING for where the next supercharger is and making sure that you have enough charge to reach it. There is NO easy way to do this other than to use Google Maps to find a supercharger or put in a destination BEYOND your actual stop to see where the next charger shows up.

I found that google maps sometimes identifies destination chargers that the native Tesla app does not identify.

MILEAGE PERFORMANCE
in my experience the rated mileage appears to assume that you are driving at about 230WH/MILE with is an impressive 4.3 KWH/mile. I find that rarely does the Tesla Y get that level of performance. More typically it is somewhere close to 350WH/mile or just 2.9 KWH/mile. This range drop means that your typical 326 projected range drops easily to under 250 miles and if you are only at 80% can drop below 200 miles. So some of the stops we were literally down to about 10-30 miles left of range which is LESS than 10% and low enough to make some of us nervous. So on a road trip, assume that you will need to stop every 170 miles are so.

So the way to tell where you are with mileage does NOT seem to be to use the range miles that shows up on the top of your monitor (this seems to assume that the remaining mileage efficiency is 230wh/mile which I already noted RARELY happens), but to see where you are range wise by using the ENERGY function and seeing just how well you are doing over the last 5 miles, last 15 miles etc and comparing this with just HOW far you need to go get to your next charge. If you use this function you will also see the WH/MILE you are averaging and be able to adjust your driving somewhat. So what I would normally do is see what my 5 mile range is expected to be and check to make sure that this is 20-30 miles HIGHER than the miles to the next destination. This is CLEARLY MORE complicated than we were told, but is the only way to be absolutely certain you aren't going to run out of charge BEFORE you reach your next destination.

Could you simply trust the system?

Yes most of the time you would be okay, but if the projected amount of charge remaining is 8% or less, I would be careful and watch this like a hawk. You can also easily adjust your driving based on seeing the energy tab and seeing how speed affects things. Another way to identify a potential problem is to watch what the predicted battery % is at your next charging stop. It will change as you drive, presumably taking into account how well or badly your actual mileage efficiency is. If it falls below 5% and you have a long ways to go, you might want to consider an early charging stop. I know I did once or twice. I might have made it, but none of us wanted to tempt fate.

My experience was that at 55 mph on a flat, I could probably get close to the rated 230WH/Mile. However, if I drive at 65 this will likely be more like 300wh/mile and at 80 (In Texas speed limits are 75 and higher) you are looking closer to 350 WH/mile or even higher. Also you LOSE a LOT when you are climbing and you lose some when the AC is cranked up to high. We would sometimes use our phone compass app to check what our current altitude is and then google the altitude for our destination to be sure we charge extra if we are going up hill. Presumably the Tesla NAV accounts for altitude climbs, but I wanted to be doubly sure.

AC AIR CONDITIONING
The Tesla Y has a heat pump and I was kind of hoping that applied to the AC as well (still don't know if it does), but yes it still uses power and so don't over do it. An easy way to see how this affects your efficiency is to use that energy tab. Also we did notice that at high outdoor temps it sometimes cut out for brief time periods (10-15 minutes). According to a Tesla rep I was told this happens, because if the battery gets too hot, it will prioritize keeping the battery at a reasonable temp over keeping you at a reasonable temp. This NEVER happened for longer than about 15 minutes even while we were driving through 117 degree weather. So it wasn't a serious problem, just noticeable and annoying. What did happens which I thought was weird is that sometimes after the outdoor temp was really high and when the car was driving and the outside temp dropped to under 80 the AC would stop working for periods of up to 15 minutes. I don't have an explanation for this as the car is PROBABLY NOT overheating.

AUTO PILOT
We found that the autopilot is a MUST on road trips particularly when you are tired and need a little help or when the driving conditions are a bit difficult due to inclement weather, curvy roads, or night time. HOWEVER, on curvy roads I noticed that the blue driving line and the Google Maps line often depart and depart significantly so that you can easily be confused about whether you are going off the road. In these cases I had to IGNORE the white lines and trust that the car was driving correctly. Tesla needs to fix this as it's NOT an issue with WAZE or GOOGLE MAPS. (see attached pictures)

NAV
We found the Tesla NAV to be accurate and to plot appropriately. I was told it even incorporates traffic data. However, one road near Marfa Texas turned out to be a dirt road for MOST of it and would NOT be driveable if it were raining. That segment of not totally completed road was about 10 miles. I don't know any way around that, because at that point we didn't have a lot of charge to detour around the dirt section and there weren't a lot of charging opportunities in this area.
 

threeputts

Member
Dec 14, 2020
108
125
Minnesota
We found that the autopilot is a MUST on road trips particularly when you are tired and need a little help or when the driving conditions are a bit difficult due to inclement weather, curvy roads, or night time.
If you can't handle the driving conditions w/o using autopilot you should not be driving.
 

TomServo

Active Member
Apr 10, 2014
1,533
989
Belleville IL
Summary of recent (and first LONG road trip) over the July 4th weekend road trip from southern IL to southern MD and return via I-64 and our Y performed FLAWLESSLY.
As they say, a picture is worth a 1000 words.
LM3NqDt.jpg


I was very pleased with the range and efficiency of our 2020 LR AWD Y and the Tesla Charging network (Super and Destination chargers).
 

boulder.dude

Member
May 20, 2021
81
166
Boulder, Colorado
Summary of recent (and first LONG road trip) over the July 4th weekend road trip from southern IL to southern MD and return via I-64 and our Y performed FLAWLESSLY.
As they say, a picture is worth a 1000 words.
LM3NqDt.jpg


I was very pleased with the range and efficiency of our 2020 LR AWD Y and the Tesla Charging network (Super and Destination chargers).
What were your average speeds? We did a road trip and see closer to 300-310 Wh/mi when going 80-85 mph for long stretches (LR w/ Inductions).
 

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