No longer worth it to plug in Electric Cars or Plug-In Hybrids in Areas wit High Electricity Costs and Low Gasoline Costs

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Pete C. wrote:

What is even more diconcerting is when the Fed whines because it can't get inflation up to their target levels. I wonder what's wrong with a steady state equilibrium?
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

On my Toyota you can't even follow the plug wires because there aren't any. Still, I know where they lurk and it's no big deal, just an easily removed shroud and there they are in a neat little line.
I'm a little strange when I'm buying a car. I pop the hood and scout out the oil filter, drain plugs, spark plugs, air filters, and other things I may visit in the future. For that reason, I'm big on straight engines whether they are 4, 6, or 8 cylinders. I will admit the straight 8 in the Chrysler New Yorker I had was a bit of a beast. Easy to work on, but there was a lot of it.
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I don't think it has anything to do with BO. With oil shade production techniques improving, the US has been moving towards being oil-indept. All that drilling slowed down when OPEC dropped it's price of oil. Refineries here on the west coast have started canceling contracts and put capital projects on hold until prices come back up. Plus in Calif, winter fuel is cheaper to make than summer, adding to the price drop.
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Per SMS:

Dunno what the life of the Prius' battery is - or what it's replacement cost is.... but BatterLifeInMiles/ReplacementCost is certainly going to be a few more cents....
e.g. Pulling numbers out of the air:
80 mile range, 1,000 cycles = 80,000 mile life.
$5,000 replacement cost... 5000/80000 = six more cents per mile.
Maybe somebody can chime in with the real numbers....
--
Pete Cresswell

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how much does a gas/diesel spend on maintenance (oil, anti-freeze, spark plugs, air filters, tune-ups, etc) over 80000 miles
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Malcom \"Mal\" Reynolds wrote:

Diesel $2720 or so, and that's with M1 synthetic oil at 5K intervals and fuel filters every 10k.
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My understanding is that a lingering problem with electric cars is that they use lithium ion battery packs, and those battery packs are really nothing more than 300 or so laptop li-ion batteries. So, you pay $40,000 to buy the car new, but the li-ion batteries don't last any longer than they would in a laptop computer. So, a few years down the road you're looking at buying a new battery pack for the car, or 300 battery packs at $50 per battery pack, or $15,000.
It's that problem with the battery packs for the cars only lasting a few years that still needs to be solved. I, for one, wouldn't want to drive an electric car if I had to pay two or three times as much more for batteries than I would have to pay for gasoline in a conventional car.
Does anyone know if this is correct or am I misinformed?
--
nestork


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Pete C. wrote:

The problem I see with that is the possibility of trading your brand new battery pack for a 4 year old one that has started to degrade. It's not quite like the Blue Rhino model where a bottle either holds propane or it doesn't. The battery swap might also follow the Blue Rhino plan in that what you get at some stations isn't fully charged.
The problems aren't insurmountable but I would see an initial reluctance.
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'Pete C.[_3_ Wrote: > ;3304664']

> standardized

It's obvious to me that using Li-Ion battery packs for electric vehicles will first require that we find a way to recycle the chemicals (like lithium) in Li-Ion battery packs. Otherwise the vast amounts of lithium that are going to be dumped in our landfill sites is going to cause other pollution issues. So, people that say electric cars are environmentally friendlier than gas guzzlers may not be considering the impact of dumping hundreds of pounds of lithium in the landfill site for every car on the road every 6 or 7 years.
Does anyone know whether we can recycle the lithium in Li-Ion battery packs now? What happens to dead Li-Ion battery packs from laptop computers? Do they just get dumped in a landfill site or do we recycle them? If they're not recycled, then that problem needs to be solved before we start producing Li-Ion battery packs each containing hundreds of pounds of lithium with no plan as to what to do with dead Li-Ion battery packs.
--
nestork


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On 11/5/2014 11:54 AM, nestork wrote:

Lithium salts are not real toxic and lithium is in great demand for batteries and would be recycled. I don't know about the other battery chemicals but they are probably more toxic.
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Pete C. wrote:

Worst case, you run out of juice 20 miles from the next town. Around here, that usually means you can take your smart phone and play Angry Birds or something until someone comes along because there isn't going to be a convenient cell tower.
They might make it heavily populated urban areas or for commuting short distances.
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On 11/4/2014 10:35 PM, Pete C. wrote:

Is that the recommendation for synthetic for your engine? I'd have thought much longer.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

The Ford (Navistar) 6.4 diesel and really all of the new generation of emissions controlled diesels have higher maintenance requirements than the old generations.
There was a real sea change in diesel technology that accompanied the emissions controls, mechanical injection pumps were replaced with high pressure common rail electronic injection, basic turbos were replaced with two stage turbos with servo controlled variable stator vanes, etc. All this change give significantly higher performance than the old generations, but needs more care.
I'm particularly anal about maintenance on my $60k truck ($15k engine alone) and I'm pretty happy with the results. I do oil analysis at every oil change and my reports are some of the best seen for a 6.4 per the various diesel forums. I'm not going to skimp on maintenance to save perhaps $200/yr in oil and risk a $15k engine as a result.
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nestork wrote:

The packs last more like 5+ years, but it's still an issue.
A greater issue is the time to charge vs. the time to fuel a liquid fueled vehicle. Fueling a liquid fueled vehicle for ~500 miles range takes about 10 min maximum, vs. 8 hours for 15 miles in an EV. There is no way EVs will go beyond niche and ego driven users without resolving that issue.
Fortunately that issue was solved long ago in electric warehouse forklifts where rather than have the forklift down for 6+ hours to recharge, they just swap battery packs with a freshly charged one and the forklift is off and running on the next shift while the previous battery pack recharges.
This is ultimately where EVs need to go and it will require standardized battery packs and robotic automation to change them at the "gas station". This way when your EV is low on charge you can pull into the station, park at the "pump" and a robotic system changes out your battery packs from underneath the vehicle and you're on your way with a full charge in a comparable time to a conventional gas station.
Beyond the standardization of battery packs and under vehicle access to them, this also requires you to own a battery pack in a common pool, something similar to the cylinder exchanges that are common for propane and industrial gasses. This also amortizes the cost of pack replacement and refurbishing into the pool the same as hydro testing and occasional cylinder replacement are absorbed into the pool for gas cylinders.
Those "fixes" will make EVs useable to a substantially larger percentage of the population. Combine that with some new nuke plants, tidal generation and other green electricity sources to provide "free" charging power at residences so you can top up overnight for the next days travel and we it can have a huge impact on overall emissions and oil use. As the batteries improve and longer ranges on a charge are available still more people will be able to utilize EVs.
Those changes are the only way an EV would be useful to me, much of my driving is short local trips where it makes little difference if I drove an EV or my diesel F350, it's still a negligible expense per trip. My longer trips are ~120 miles RT so without a quick pack replacement "gas station" and EV would be useless to me.
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Pete C. wrote:

That's my theory, oil is cheap. When I was driving, the company I worked for did a lot of oil analysis as the fleet was modernized to Detroit 60 engines. Their oil change schedule went from 12000 to 20000 miles. According to the shop foreman they weren't seeing any significant degradation at 20000 but in his words, "well, you've got to change oil sometime..."
When you're talking 10 gallons of Rotella and 2 filters per change, it adds up. The other side of the story is many of those Detroits made a million miles.
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Our fleet for regular passenger cars and light trucks zeroed in on 7500 for oil changes using non-synthetic. I've seen E350 vans run up to 250,000 miles on that schedule and still running like new when sold.
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rbowman wrote:

That risk is absorbed into the pool. They can easily have an embedded chip in the packs to track usage and run times so that weak packs are taken out of service and reconditioned / replaced. So you should virtually never have a case where you "fuel up" and the pack only gets you 5 miles before you need to swap again.
I own two argon cylinders that I swap in the Airgas pool. I never have to deal with hydro testing or the potential of the cylinder not passing hydro. I paid for the cylinder once and then just pay for the gas at each swap and factored into that gas cost is the costs of pool hydro testing and the expected amount of failed cylinders in the pool. No reason EV battery packs would be any different.
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Per Pete C.:

On the ebike I have been fooling around with each winter, it seems like Li degradation is sort of a straight-line phenomon. i.e. the amount of energy that can be put into a pack diminishes slowly but steadily over time.
If that is the case with automobile batteries, I would think that the pool battery would be unpredictable. i.e. there would have to be a cutoff point where the battery is retired and/or rebuilt and that cutoff point would be something much less than 100% full life.... so the battery I get at the next change might take me the full 80 miles.... or only take me 50 or 60 miles... and I might find out the hard way if my round trip to work is 65 miles.
Seems like hydrogen has dropped out of the news cycle lately. Wouldn't that be the optimal "battery"? or has some deal-breaker emerged?
--
Pete Cresswell

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On 11/5/2014 2:48 PM, (PeteCresswell) wrote:

Hyundai has some Tuscon models out on lease in southern CA. From what I've read, they seem to want to expand the program. It is limited to So Ca because they have the fueling infrastructure.
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"(PeteCresswell)" wrote:

Worst case it means you make an unplanned 10 min stop at another "gas station". Hardly the end of the world, and there can easily be an automated rebate if the battery ran less then the guaranteed minimum. It's certainly not an issue that would undermine such a system.

Hydrogen isn't very efficient to separate from say water, though some gains have been made. Once separated it then has to be compressed to very high pressures to get enough in a vehicle to give a practical range, another big efficiency loss. In the end unless you are feeding the system from a very low cost per unit energy source, say nuclear, hydroelectric or perhaps tidal generation, the efficiency is so bad as to make it worthless. Don't be fooled by the hydrogen that is produced from natural gas or the like, that's still a "fossil" fuel, not a true use of hydrogen as a "battery".
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