Saturday, May 6, 2017

April 2017 Drive Report; 30 KWH Pack Update

Another month in the can and I am past due on tire rotation #2 (which should be done sometime later today).  I decided I would keep it under 10,000 miles in the first 6 months of leasership but that didn't work so I decided to keep it under 10,000 miles within my 6th month of leasership and made it!

First off, the bad news. The gasser has been neglected so I took her out a few times. She went 105.7 miles at a rough cost of $10.08 or 6.7 cents per mile. And rough it was! The car would not idle at a steady RPM. I finally had to get gas (at about 5/8th of a tank) and that cured the issue.  FYI; gas was up 26 cents per gallon between fill ups for me (last fill up was in March) but news says Oil prices hit 7 month low so sadly, it looks like the price hike is just temporary. Where are those tax hikes when you need them!

The LEAF traveled 2207 miles costing $15.96 or less than a penny a mile. Home power was 8.9 cents per kwh and was benefited by over 350 kwh of NCTC power.

Since I am 5 days from my 6 month anniversary, I felt it appropriate to post updated battery stats and... well, nothing to report. No changes detected.

Moving on!  As mentioned earlier, I had to evict my water pump. It was simply not pulling its weight and the new one appears to be blending in very well but as always, we want to keep an eye out on new roomies to make sure they are all they appear to be, right?

Normally, I power up LEAF Spy only in the morning to log daily stats, fast charging, or when stretching the range.  I have now started running LEAF Spy to monitor motor temps and have noticed that the peak temp seems to be around 128º F.  It is not difficult to get there if driving 70-80 miles at stretch or so (which would be a short trip for me lately)  and the temps rise rapidly to that point then bounce in the 124-128 range.  This seems to indicate the temperature control is working very well.

LEAF Spy also has columns in its log for two inverter temperature measurements but they are not working at the moment. Hope they do soon.

Another project I hope to start soon if the weatherman finally realizes the date is climate control monitoring. LEAF Spy breaks down power usage for A/C, heat, etc.  I have known for a long time that A/C is a pretty small hit on the range but I think its time to find out just how small it is.

Finally; Brent in the Portland area is grill blocking. This is an old Prius trick that did two things; heated up the Prius quicker which is needed to get the best performance but it also reduces drag.  The grill on a car has the same basic effect of having a parachute the same size hanging off your back bumper.  Instead of air slipping around the car, it goes into the grill, funnels around and leaks out. All that is creating a huge amount of drag.  So grill blocking will reduce that drag and increase your range.

FYI; NASCAR does the same thing but as we know; blocking too much of the grill on a gasser causes heat buildup which creates problems and this is "the" reason you see engines blowing up on the racetrack. Its almost never a malfunction; simply miscalculating how much of the grill to cover.  Done effectively means an extra few mph on the straightaways which is usually the difference between losing or kissing the girl!

Brent does caution that close monitoring should be maintained especially in warmer weather as there is pass thru ducting to the battery that helps to circulate air. This is a huge benefit since the 30 kwh packs charge with a much steeper profile on Chademo's so rapid heat build up is common!

Here is my 2nd charge after 30 minutes in Centralia with charge rate mostly over 45 KW.  First charge was about 90 miles and 3 hours earlier. OAT was the mid 70's which is the 2nd warmest day this car has seen (Warmest was day one!)

All this means not much grill blocking in my future but I  am still predicting 125 miles on a charge will not be a challenge for me.  I am confident I can do 140 miles if I want to and might have to try that soon!


  1. If your old gasser is not running right due to being stored, treat it like a mower in the winter months, put fuel stabilizer in the tank. The stabilier will drive out moisture due to condensation buildup

  2. You indicate the LEAF battery is getting up to 128F and that the cooling is working very well. Isn't such a high temperature an indication of a cooling defect?

    Currently my LEAF rarely gets above 85F, temps at this time of year aren't extreme. Summer will be different. I dive about 16,000 miles/year just a tad less than yourself.

    Something's not right if your battery gets that hot so easily at this time of year.

    1. its the "motor" that is getting up that high. My batts are warm but I think the highest I have seen was 122º. I am below 100º most of the time even with QCs