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#3289750 - 02/21/14 04:23 PM Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill
Sunnyinhollister Offline


Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 445
Loc: Hollister, CA
Here's the UOA on our Volt after 23,662 miles, and 20 months. During that time we estimate that we burned approximately 112 gallons of fuel. All but a handful of times did the engine oil get up to operating temperature due to the nature of the Volt programming and how we use it. I would define it as the poster child for severe service due to the very short trip nature. The OLM read 75%.

Cheers!

OIL AC Delco Dexos 1
MILES IN USE 23,662 miles/112 gallons
MILES 23,662
SAMPLE TAKEN 1/29/2014 - 20 months

ALUMINUM 7
CHROMIUM 0
IRON 28
COPPER 87
LEAD 1
TIN 3
CADMIUM 0
VANADIUM 0
MOLYBDENUM 67
ANTIMONY 0
NICKEL 3
MANGANESE 6
SILVER 0
TITANIUM 0
POTASSIUM 4
BORON 52
SILICON 39
SODIUM 8
CALCIUM 1003
MAGNESIUM 698
LITHIUM 0
PHOSPHORUS 668
ZINC 742
BARIUM 4

WATER 0.0
SUS @ 212F 53.0
cSt @ 100C 8.2
Flashpoint F 320
Fuel % 2.3
Antifreeze 0.0
Insolubles 0.2
TBN 3.8

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#3289765 - 02/21/14 04:39 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
TrevorS Offline


Registered: 07/14/13
Posts: 1281
Loc: California
So the OLM is suggesting another 60 months is possible (75% left or gone?) or will it trip earlier for time?

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#3289780 - 02/21/14 04:53 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: TrevorS]
Sunnyinhollister Offline


Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 445
Loc: Hollister, CA
Originally Posted By: TrevorS
So the OLM is suggesting another 60 months is possible (75% left or gone?) or will it trip earlier for time?


It would trip at 24 months
_________________________
2013 Chevy Cruze Eco 6MT - New member of the family
2012 Chevy Volt - 250+ MPG Lifetime average
1998 Jeep Wrangler Sport - 4.6L Stroker

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#3289792 - 02/21/14 05:05 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
krismoriah72 Online   content


Registered: 02/16/09
Posts: 168
Loc: wv
By my calculation you are getting 211 miles to the gallon.
23662 miles @ 112 gallons of fuel.

impressive!


Originally Posted By: Sunnyinhollister
Here's the UOA on our Volt after 23,662 miles, and 20 months. During that time we estimate that we burned approximately 112 gallons of fuel. All but a handful of times did the engine oil get up to operating temperature due to the nature of the Volt programming and how we use it. I would define it as the poster child for severe service due to the very short trip nature. The OLM read 75%.

Cheers!

OIL AC Delco Dexos 1
MILES IN USE 23,662 miles/112 gallons
MILES 23,662
SAMPLE TAKEN 1/29/2014 - 20 months

ALUMINUM 7
CHROMIUM 0
IRON 28
COPPER 87
LEAD 1
TIN 3
CADMIUM 0
VANADIUM 0
MOLYBDENUM 67
ANTIMONY 0
NICKEL 3
MANGANESE 6
SILVER 0
TITANIUM 0
POTASSIUM 4
BORON 52
SILICON 39
SODIUM 8
CALCIUM 1003
MAGNESIUM 698
LITHIUM 0
PHOSPHORUS 668
ZINC 742
BARIUM 4

WATER 0.0
SUS @ 212F 53.0
cSt @ 100C 6.2
Flashpoint F 320
Fuel % 2.3
Antifreeze 0.0
Insolubles 0.2
TBN 3.8

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#3289848 - 02/21/14 06:03 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
SLATRON Offline


Registered: 10/20/13
Posts: 268
Loc: upstate NY
just curious, any idea how much electricity used per week/month to charge, these are plugin right?

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#3289899 - 02/21/14 06:58 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
TrevorS Offline


Registered: 07/14/13
Posts: 1281
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Sunnyinhollister
Originally Posted By: TrevorS
So the OLM is suggesting another 60 months is possible (75% left or gone?) or will it trip earlier for time?


It would trip at 24 months


And does the 75% mean 75% left or 75% used?

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#3290109 - 02/21/14 11:09 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Darwin1138 Offline


Registered: 01/07/14
Posts: 325
Loc: Mexico City
By my calculations your engine has made no more than 100 hours of operation or between 2500 to 3000 miles of a normal engine, having said that, I think the UOA is in the normal range the only thing that worries me is the silicon content, I think is high for an engine with too little use, I don't know if this engine comes with silicon sealants that made that number higher

Also it will be good to know how many kWh has used
_________________________
Self-Diagnosed Grumpy Old Crumudgeon

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#3290177 - 02/22/14 01:49 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Artem Offline


Registered: 10/30/10
Posts: 4446
Loc: Florida
To do 23,000 miles, I'd imagine a good amount of electricity was used.

Can the OP shed more light into how much it cost to run the Volt during this time, taking into account any increase in electricity bill as a result of the car charging. I'm definitely interested.
_________________________
2011 Toyota Avalon 3.5L V6 - 55k - 0w30 Mobil 1

2014 RAM 3500HD work truck - tows 30k pounds!

2014 Mazda 3 Hatch i Touring 2.0L & 6spd - Mazda 0w20

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#3290186 - 02/22/14 02:46 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: TrevorS]
Sunnyinhollister Offline


Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 445
Loc: Hollister, CA
Originally Posted By: TrevorS
Originally Posted By: Sunnyinhollister
Originally Posted By: TrevorS
So the OLM is suggesting another 60 months is possible (75% left or gone?) or will it trip earlier for time?


It would trip at 24 months


And does the 75% mean 75% left or 75% used?


75% Remaining
_________________________
2013 Chevy Cruze Eco 6MT - New member of the family
2012 Chevy Volt - 250+ MPG Lifetime average
1998 Jeep Wrangler Sport - 4.6L Stroker

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#3290187 - 02/22/14 02:48 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Darwin1138]
Sunnyinhollister Offline


Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 445
Loc: Hollister, CA
Originally Posted By: Darwin1138
By my calculations your engine has made no more than 100 hours of operation or between 2500 to 3000 miles of a normal engine, having said that, I think the UOA is in the normal range the only thing that worries me is the silicon content, I think is high for an engine with too little use, I don't know if this engine comes with silicon sealants that made that number higher

Also it will be good to know how many kWh has used


I would think that the silicon is from sealers or maybe from the casting process?
_________________________
2013 Chevy Cruze Eco 6MT - New member of the family
2012 Chevy Volt - 250+ MPG Lifetime average
1998 Jeep Wrangler Sport - 4.6L Stroker

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#3290190 - 02/22/14 03:07 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Artem]
Sunnyinhollister Offline


Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 445
Loc: Hollister, CA
Originally Posted By: Artem
To do 23,000 miles, I'd imagine a good amount of electricity was used.

Can the OP shed more light into how much it cost to run the Volt during this time, taking into account any increase in electricity bill as a result of the car charging. I'm definitely interested.


The total amount of electricity used since we purchased the vehicle in May of 2012 was never tracked I'm sorry to say. And the cost for the electricity will vary because we are able to use some free charging stations, we have time of use energy rates out here, and we installed solar in our home.

As far as energy use, it takes approximately 10.8 kwh to fully charge the Volt. We can normally get 42 to 47 miles on a charge in this area. Part of the reason is that the temperature here is extremely mild. Once you start using a lot of AC or heat, the range will drop. And obviously how you drive will also impact the range you get. I can drive to work (IF I can pry the keys from my wife's hand)charge the car during my 12 hour shift, and drive home which is ~106 miles round trip on 0.4 gallons of gas.
_________________________
2013 Chevy Cruze Eco 6MT - New member of the family
2012 Chevy Volt - 250+ MPG Lifetime average
1998 Jeep Wrangler Sport - 4.6L Stroker

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#3291061 - 02/22/14 08:59 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Errtt Offline


Registered: 11/14/10
Posts: 2174
Loc: California
Interesting - I know nada about the Volt.

I understand it's FF, but if 75% is left to go, wonder what the iron, copper and fuel dilution would be at 50%, 25% 10% etc.
Just seems (to me) I wouldn't want to let the FF get the OLM down in low numbers (i.e. 10%).
Then again, I understand FF will have elevated iron, copper etc.

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#3291078 - 02/22/14 09:16 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Sunnyinhollister Offline


Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 445
Loc: Hollister, CA
I figured the fuel dilution would be a little high, but with a flash point of 320F and a cSt @ 100C of 8.2 (the 6.2 was a typo), I think I might just do an annual drain and fill with the cheapest Dexos 1 that I can find and change the filter every other year.
_________________________
2013 Chevy Cruze Eco 6MT - New member of the family
2012 Chevy Volt - 250+ MPG Lifetime average
1998 Jeep Wrangler Sport - 4.6L Stroker

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#3291277 - 02/23/14 03:41 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Patman Offline



Registered: 05/27/02
Posts: 19312
Loc: Oakville, Ontario
Originally Posted By: Sunnyinhollister
I figured the fuel dilution would be a little high, but with a flash point of 320F and a cSt @ 100C of 8.2 (the 6.2 was a typo)



I edited your original post with the corrected info for you smile
_________________________
2005 Corvette (M1 5w30 & Fram Ultra)
2006 Civic EX Coupe (M1 0w20 & Fram Ultra)
2010 BMW 328i X-Drive (M1 0w40 & Mann filter)

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#3292814 - 02/24/14 01:06 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Patman]
rbarrios Offline


Registered: 05/28/10
Posts: 164
Loc: Los Angeles,CA
are there any settings on the Volt that would keep track of energy used?

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#3292826 - 02/24/14 01:18 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
901Memphis Offline


Registered: 08/14/10
Posts: 6364
Loc: Northern Kentucky
With the epa combined 37 MPG gas only that's equal to 4,144 miles on the gas engine. Looks pretty typical for such a break in run on a new engine with the wear metals. Surprised no moisture present.

Good call on changing it by time.

The volt is rated to use 35 kWh/100 miles. So about 6,800 kWs used for electric. That is subtracting the 4,144 miles from the 23,662 run. Not sure what the efficiency of the charger is if you are figuring out the electric cost to the home.
_________________________
1999 Ford Taurus 146k (Vulcan v6) - M1 High Mileage 5w30 | Fram Ultra XG 3600
2002 Buick Century 105k - Peak 5w30 / Fram Ultra XG 3980 / Filter mag

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#3478559 - 09/09/14 05:53 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
webfors Offline


Registered: 06/06/06
Posts: 3785
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Fantastic mileage! I love the plugin hybrid concept.

What oil/viscosity did you refill with?
_________________________
08 Forester 5mt, AFE 0w30, XG7317
13 Dodge GC, VWB 5w20, Mopar OF
13 Suzuki SFV650, OEM 10w40, OEM OF
All small engines; RT5 10w30

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#3478874 - 09/10/14 06:04 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: 901Memphis]
3800Series Online   content


Registered: 08/02/14
Posts: 486
Loc: Gulf Coast, MS
I can't speak for effeciancy since battery's are so inefficient.. But that's roughly $816 worth of power if my math is correct compared to my last power bill and that's with 100% efficiency.

On a odd side note its also my former area code.
_________________________
'95 Regal 3.8 -95k+

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#3480728 - 09/12/14 07:58 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
bigt61 Online   content


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 1346
Loc: Virginia
10.8kw Hours in Virginia would be around $1.50 with tax, etc. So $1.50 to go 42 to 47 miles is not bad. At the rate you're going, I'd just put synthetic in it and change oil every 3 years or so.
_________________________
92 Suburban 2500 7.4L 57k M1_5w30 4yr OCI
99 Olds Aurora 4.0L 91K M1_5w30 4yr OCI
94 Bonneville 3.8L 152k VML 5w30 2yr OCI
70 Camaro 5.7L 59k

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#3480768 - 09/12/14 08:50 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Spector Offline


Registered: 06/10/02
Posts: 3224
Loc: Chattanooga, TN
Son in law has a volt, had his first oil change at 2 years, first time that it had seen any shop and to keep the warranty intact the OCI is 2 years or the OLM. As to electricity cost, he did not notice any real change upon purchase and finally got the 240 charger installed at home and loves that. Wish I had asked him to get an oil sample. I like the car and great for his use but as I said when they purchased it, way overpriced even with the energy credits.

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#3480809 - 09/12/14 09:35 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: 901Memphis]
grumpyoldman Offline


Registered: 09/01/14
Posts: 18
Loc: denver, co
This is so interesting. Questions:

- The Volt's gas engine only turns on to run a generator, so its demands on engine oil should be far less than on a regular gas-powered car. True or false?

- Does the gas engine turn at only one specific RPM or a narrow range? If so, how does this affect oil life or stress?

- The first part of my first statement might not be right. According to the wikipedia:
"When the engine is running it may be periodically mechanically linked (by a clutch) to a planetary gear set, and hence the output drive axle, to improve energy efficiency."

- Is the gas/electric switchover point programmable by the user (switch at 50% battery vs. 10%, for example)? What is the factory recommendation & what did the OP use?

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#3480820 - 09/12/14 09:41 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Pablo Offline


Registered: 10/28/02
Posts: 46739
Loc: Duvall WA - Pacific NW USA
I know I can shop on line and see Volts in the $34K range.

But what did you pay and what are people paying?

Yikes - the wife is really interested. And frankly this type of vehicle would be great for her.

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#3481898 - 09/13/14 12:45 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Pablo]
dlundblad Offline


Registered: 09/30/13
Posts: 2325
Loc: Indiana
Originally Posted By: Pablo
I know I can shop on line and see Volts in the $34K range.

But what did you pay and what are people paying?

Yikes - the wife is really interested. And frankly this type of vehicle would be great for her.


I saw one at Disney's Test Track (sponsored by GM) last summer with a sticker price of $43,500. It looked like a base model too IIRC.

I thought the sticker said it got around 50 MPG? Was this just with the gas engine/ no charging. With the OP's usage of around 211 MPG, that really changes my opinion of them..
_________________________
2003 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4.0
161k
PYB 10w30/ Mopar Mo-090



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#3482473 - 09/14/14 06:03 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
robbobster Offline


Registered: 06/02/03
Posts: 1175
Loc: Long Beach, CA
Including incentives, rebates and discounts, you can get a base Volt for $20k. I'm into mine for about $22k plus tax, sticker was a hair under $36k.

Here's the breakdown for mine:
$36k MSRP
$4000 discount off MSRP
$7500 tax credit
$1500 CA cash rebate
$750 USAA member discount
$500 Costco gift card

Dealers are knocking $5k of sticker now, and there are additional incentives, compared to when I bought mine.
_________________________
2014 Volt
2010 Prius

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#3482483 - 09/14/14 06:28 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Pablo]
Apollo14 Offline


Registered: 08/18/14
Posts: 884
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: Pablo
Yikes - the wife is really interested. And frankly this type of vehicle would be great for her.


If we weren't so used to gas, I suspect a majority of people would readily concede an electric car is the better option.

I think the Leaf is the best option in most cases, you just have to let go of not having an engine.

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#3482589 - 09/14/14 10:13 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Sunnyinhollister Offline


Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 445
Loc: Hollister, CA
I'm gone for a while and did nt notice this thread had resurfaced, so I'll try and answer some of the questions.

I re-filled with M1 EP 5W-30 I had laying around.

I think in some ways the oil is stressed more in this application because the engine turns on and immediately revs to 2k+ rpms then shuts off after a little while. The oil rarely see operating temperature.

The electric/gas switch over point is not selectable, but on the newer Volts I believe there is a "hold" mode so you can maintain a desired state of charge for the battery.

Lifetime MPG is up to 250 mpg now.

The computer says we've used 11.3 gallons in the last 7300+ miles.

The Leaf seems to be a decent car, but you can't hop in and drive from SF to LA non-stop in one.
_________________________
2013 Chevy Cruze Eco 6MT - New member of the family
2012 Chevy Volt - 250+ MPG Lifetime average
1998 Jeep Wrangler Sport - 4.6L Stroker

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#3482590 - 09/14/14 10:15 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Apollo14]
bigt61 Online   content


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 1346
Loc: Virginia
Originally Posted By: Apollo14
Originally Posted By: Pablo
Yikes - the wife is really interested. And frankly this type of vehicle would be great for her.


If we weren't so used to gas, I suspect a majority of people would readily concede an electric car is the better option.

I think the Leaf is the best option in most cases, you just have to let go of not having an engine.

You also have to let go of your fear of driving more than 30 miles from home. And your fear of flat bed tow trucks.
_________________________
92 Suburban 2500 7.4L 57k M1_5w30 4yr OCI
99 Olds Aurora 4.0L 91K M1_5w30 4yr OCI
94 Bonneville 3.8L 152k VML 5w30 2yr OCI
70 Camaro 5.7L 59k

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#3482592 - 09/14/14 10:16 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Apollo14]
fdcg27 Offline


Registered: 09/25/09
Posts: 9676
Loc: OH
Originally Posted By: Apollo14
Originally Posted By: Pablo
Yikes - the wife is really interested. And frankly this type of vehicle would be great for her.


If we weren't so used to gas, I suspect a majority of people would readily concede an electric car is the better option.

I think the Leaf is the best option in most cases, you just have to let go of not having an engine.


An electric car might be a viable option for those who regularly drive only short trips.
A Leaf would not be sufficient for my daily commute in very cold weather, although it would be fine in the warmer months.
Then there's the simple fact that I can drive either Accord or the BMW 500 miles on a tank of fuel and another 500 miles of range requires only a ten minute stop at any gas station.
An electric car can work for some drivers, although whether the economics make sense will require a careful review of the lifecycle costs involved.
A new battery pack would not be cheap and its cost would pretty well negate the savings in running costs.
Also, the existing power generation and distirbution infrastructure would not support any significant number of electric cars.
_________________________
12 Accord LX 22K HGMO 0W-20
09 Forester 64K PU 5W-30
02 Accord 134K G-Oil 5W-30
01 Focus ZX3 98K Synpower 10W-30
95 BMW 318iC 150K Defy 10W-40

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#3482843 - 09/14/14 05:08 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: bigt61]
Apollo14 Offline


Registered: 08/18/14
Posts: 884
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: bigt61
Originally Posted By: Apollo14
Originally Posted By: Pablo
Yikes - the wife is really interested. And frankly this type of vehicle would be great for her.


If we weren't so used to gas, I suspect a majority of people would readily concede an electric car is the better option.

I think the Leaf is the best option in most cases, you just have to let go of not having an engine.

You also have to let go of your fear of driving more than 30 miles from home. And your fear of flat bed tow trucks.


It's nowhere near as low as 30 miles.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nissan_Leaf#Range

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#3482847 - 09/14/14 05:16 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: fdcg27]
Apollo14 Offline


Registered: 08/18/14
Posts: 884
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: fdcg27
An electric car might be a viable option for those who regularly drive only short trips.
A Leaf would not be sufficient for my daily commute in very cold weather, although it would be fine in the warmer months.
Then there's the simple fact that I can drive either Accord or the BMW 500 miles on a tank of fuel and another 500 miles of range requires only a ten minute stop at any gas station.
An electric car can work for some drivers, although whether the economics make sense will require a careful review of the lifecycle costs involved.
A new battery pack would not be cheap and its cost would pretty well negate the savings in running costs.
Also, the existing power generation and distirbution infrastructure would not support any significant number of electric cars.


Sure your personal needs are your personal needs, and most people need some sort of vehicle for longer trips.

But the idea is that on a daily basis, there are a large number of people whose total mileage remains in the single digits.

You charge your electric vehicle at night time, when the electricity demand is low and the supply is in surplus. That electricity is actually otherwise wasted.

There is no need to actually invest in more power plants nor is there any increase in any emissions from the power plant.

Inductive charging at home would mean not having to stop at gas stations nor spend any time refueling and the technology could be set to only recharge at off peak times as the plug in chargers can be already.

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#3482856 - 09/14/14 05:24 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
robbobster Offline


Registered: 06/02/03
Posts: 1175
Loc: Long Beach, CA
The utilities are really trying to increase off-peak demand, by charging low rates. As stated, there's excess capacity off-peak.

The Time Of Use EV plan that I'm on with SCE gives me power at $0.09/kWh between midnight & 6AM, so that's when the Volt gets charged.

Conversely, my electricity is ridiculously expensive from 10AM - 6PM, but we're not home during these hours anyway.
_________________________
2014 Volt
2010 Prius

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#3482901 - 09/14/14 06:34 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Apollo14]
fdcg27 Offline


Registered: 09/25/09
Posts: 9676
Loc: OH
All of this sounds plausible only until your expose it to the harsh light of reality.
Consider the average annual mileage that people do and a car that can only do a hundred or so miles on a good day seems less than practical.
The idea of off peak power demand works only in those areas with very moderate climates, like much of California.
Around here, power demand peaks in the evenings on both hot summer nights and below zero winter ones, exactly when an owner would need to be charging his EV for the following day's commute. The idea that there is significantly less power demand in the evenings doesn't apply in a number of major markets.
Charging at home means that I need to remember to plug the darn thing in each afternoon and unplug it each morning.
Probably no time savings there over a stop at the gas station, aside from the fact that the charging port will be iced over a few nights each winter, so I'll have to get some warm water to even start the process.
Until EVs can reach two hundred or so miles nominal range at a price that makes their actual cost per mile competitive with that of conventional IC cars, they'll remain a niche product sold largely due to the government incentives offered.
_________________________
12 Accord LX 22K HGMO 0W-20
09 Forester 64K PU 5W-30
02 Accord 134K G-Oil 5W-30
01 Focus ZX3 98K Synpower 10W-30
95 BMW 318iC 150K Defy 10W-40

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#3482908 - 09/14/14 06:41 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Apollo14 Offline


Registered: 08/18/14
Posts: 884
Loc: CA
12000 annual miles / 365 = 33 miles a day. That's within the range. The Chevy Volt has a 50 mile range for the purpose that the vast majority of trips will be within range.

So for a large enough number of people, on a large enough number of occasions, the range makes sense. Will it make sense all the time for all people? No of course not.

Charging at evening vs charging at *night*. Put the charger on a timer to charge at night ie off peak, not the evening. Plus the inductive chargers will just require you to drive over.

Were I in the market for a new car, a Leaf would be seriously considered. So many trips are short which the Leaf is ideal for, and the maintenance is hugely reduced. Right now I put off some short trips to combine them to avoid short tripping my vehicles. With an electric car I wouldn't. It actually increases convenience while being efficient on power used and wear and tear ie no warm up period to worry about.

I know lots of people who have taken the plunge, having considered it in the "harsh light of reality", and it was the better option. Commuting to work included.

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#3483604 - 09/15/14 02:54 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: fdcg27]
SteveSRT8 Offline


Registered: 10/10/08
Posts: 15432
Loc: Sunny Florida
Originally Posted By: fdcg27
All of this sounds plausible only until your expose it to the harsh light of reality.

Until EVs can reach two hundred or so miles nominal range at a price that makes their actual cost per mile competitive with that of conventional IC cars, they'll remain a niche product sold largely due to the government incentives offered.


Completely true, and the sales of them reflect this perception. There are a ton of folks who could use them, but even more who cannot.

Their "value" remains uncertain...
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#3483694 - 09/15/14 05:02 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Apollo14]
fdcg27 Offline


Registered: 09/25/09
Posts: 9676
Loc: OH
The Volt offers fifty miles of range simply because that was the best Chevy could do while keeping costs and weight within check.
The Volt carries the cost and weight burden of both a battery pack and an IC engine, so I'd say that its EV range is pretty good.
Thing is, the Volt isn't an EV, it's a hybrid.
Under favorable conditions, like now, where the weather is mild enough that neither heat nor AC are required and the days remain long enough that the headlights aren't needed either, I could probably make my fifty mile round trip commute with a Volt in EV mode and a Leaf would also work just fine.
A Volt would also be perfectly practical for trips as well as those cold winter days when battery capacity is sapped and heat is a necessity, while the Leaf wouldn't be.
I know that this may be hard to grasp from a Californian perspective, but on a below zero morning or a ten degree afternoon, heat is a necessity, not a luxury, if only to keep the inside of the windows clear of frost. The days are also short enough that headlights are required in both directions, and neither ambient cold nor the use of heat nor the use of the headlights are conducive to decent EV range.
A Leaf would simply not work for me or many others for most of the year.
That's why they remain a drug on the market and is also the reason that Nissan has reduced the asking significantly.
If you could make one work for you, then have at it.
The idea a low maintenance car seems intriguing, but then the only added maintenance with an IC engine is the ocassional oil change and a set of plugs eventually, both of which the Volt will need. Really not much maintenance expense involved.
The Leaf will still need brakes, tires and all of the other little computer parts vital to its operation. If a new battery pack is eventually required, that cost will pretty well ditch any fuel savings..
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#3483748 - 09/15/14 06:22 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: fdcg27]
Sunnyinhollister Offline


Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 445
Loc: Hollister, CA
Originally Posted By: fdcg27
The Volt offers fifty miles of range simply because that was the best Chevy could do while keeping costs and weight within check.
The Volt carries the cost and weight burden of both a battery pack and an IC engine, so I'd say that its EV range is pretty good.
Thing is, the Volt isn't an EV, it's a hybrid.
Under favorable conditions, like now, where the weather is mild enough that neither heat nor AC are required and the days remain long enough that the headlights aren't needed either, I could probably make my fifty mile round trip commute with a Volt in EV mode and a Leaf would also work just fine.
A Volt would also be perfectly practical for trips as well as those cold winter days when battery capacity is sapped and heat is a necessity, while the Leaf wouldn't be.
I know that this may be hard to grasp from a Californian perspective, but on a below zero morning or a ten degree afternoon, heat is a necessity, not a luxury, if only to keep the inside of the windows clear of frost. The days are also short enough that headlights are required in both directions, and neither ambient cold nor the use of heat nor the use of the headlights are conducive to decent EV range.
A Leaf would simply not work for me or many others for most of the year.
That's why they remain a drug on the market and is also the reason that Nissan has reduced the asking significantly.
If you could make one work for you, then have at it.
The idea a low maintenance car seems intriguing, but then the only added maintenance with an IC engine is the ocassional oil change and a set of plugs eventually, both of which the Volt will need. Really not much maintenance expense involved.
The Leaf will still need brakes, tires and all of the other little computer parts vital to its operation. If a new battery pack is eventually required, that cost will pretty well ditch any fuel savings..


Almost 80% of Americans have a round trip commute of less than 40 miles. Given the range of the Leaf, it would work for most Americans - even on those cold mornings.

Headlights do not impact EV range all that much.

I doubt if I will ever need to change spark plugs on the Volt given that I'm getting over 600 miles to the gallon now. With regenerative braking, the brakes should last well over 150k miles. Air filter? Maybe change it once.

Now if I lived in an area that regularly has snow and ice and could only have one car, I would have a gas AWD car like a Subaru.
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#3484051 - 09/16/14 05:49 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
fdcg27 Offline


Registered: 09/25/09
Posts: 9676
Loc: OH
I was seriously looking at the Leaf as a proposal for local patrol use at work.
According to various Leaf sources I looked at, you can't count on forty miles of range under very cold conditions, battery potential declines with age and use and deep discharges are not desirable for long battery pack life.
Almost making it home on a ten degree evening wouldn't cut it.
I've seen a few Leafs here and I wonder how they did over the last very cold winter.
A Volt would make a lot more sense than a Leaf, particularly if you could buy one at the Prius C prices one poster quoted above.
For that matter, a Volt would make a lot more sense than any Prius if low operating costs are your goal.
WRT AWD in winter, it's very nice to have, but not really necessary. After you've driven a bit in slick winter conditions, you can drive pretty much anything without problems.
As others have noted in other threads, a set of dedicated winters transforms almost any car into a great snow machine as well.
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#3486061 - 09/18/14 10:26 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
Youthanasia Offline


Registered: 12/02/08
Posts: 51
Loc: CA
140 mile round trip to work, up to 115F in summer, 25F in winter, volt doesn't cut it. Sounds good though, and for most people it would probably work fine.

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#3486448 - 09/18/14 05:54 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
DoubleWasp Offline


Registered: 05/21/12
Posts: 440
Loc: Lighthouse Point, FL
I would never in a million years invest in a vehicle that could quite possibly cause me to say "oh, that's too far for my car to go" or "I'd like to, but my car is going to be charging, so I'm going to have to pass."

An electric car is not a primary vehicle, period.

There is life beyond your daily commute.
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#3487422 - 09/19/14 01:55 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: DoubleWasp]
PandaBear Offline


Registered: 08/05/02
Posts: 12555
Loc: Silicon Valley
Originally Posted By: DoubleWasp
I would never in a million years invest in a vehicle that could quite possibly cause me to say "oh, that's too far for my car to go" or "I'd like to, but my car is going to be charging, so I'm going to have to pass."

An electric car is not a primary vehicle, period.

There is life beyond your daily commute.


That's why EV is likely not the only vehicle in a household. If I were to buy an EV I'd make sure I have at least a beater as a backup.
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#3487425 - 09/19/14 01:57 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: PandaBear]
webfors Offline


Registered: 06/06/06
Posts: 3785
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: PandaBear
Originally Posted By: DoubleWasp
I would never in a million years invest in a vehicle that could quite possibly cause me to say "oh, that's too far for my car to go" or "I'd like to, but my car is going to be charging, so I'm going to have to pass."

An electric car is not a primary vehicle, period.

There is life beyond your daily commute.


That's why EV is likely not the only vehicle in a household. If I were to buy an EV I'd make sure I have at least a beater as a backup.


Definitely an option as a second vehicle used for reasonable commute distances. We've considered one, but lean towards the plugin hybrids as the better option.
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#3488394 - 09/20/14 11:38 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
OneEyeJack Offline


Registered: 09/14/10
Posts: 1794
Loc: S California
The Volt was not successful in Taxi service in California. Two problems. It's limited to 3 passengers instead of the traditional 4 and reliability was a problem. It suffered by comparison with the Prius which is proving to be almost bullet proof. Taxis are an exercise in high mileage, hard use and minimum maintenance. The Prius does well because the transmission never needs service, never shifts gears and has no reverse gear. There are no friction components of any kind. Also there is no fan belt on the engine and the cams are driven by a, so far maintenance free chain and most of the braking goes to charging the battery. Low maintenance and reliability are the reasons the Prius is in taxi service. The operators don't care one bit about saving the planet. And so far with all the miles driven not one traction battery has been replaced. A lot of people that have never owned or operated a Prius have strong opinions about the problems and short comings of the Prius but the taxi people are doing just fine and ignore all that good advice.
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#3489297 - 09/21/14 12:37 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
DoubleWasp Offline


Registered: 05/21/12
Posts: 440
Loc: Lighthouse Point, FL
Taxis are a perfect application for hydrid technology, all of that stop-and-go. The Prius V must be a real winner at that game. Compared to a Van or Vic, it must save loads.
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#3489971 - 09/22/14 10:22 AM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: DoubleWasp]
Garak Offline


Registered: 12/05/09
Posts: 11782
Loc: Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: DoubleWasp
Compared to a Van or Vic, it must save loads.

My brother spends less dollars daily on gas with his Prius right now than I did twenty years ago in a Caprice, and roughly the same number of dollars as I did closer to twenty-five years ago with LPG.
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#3490117 - 09/22/14 01:15 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: Sunnyinhollister]
bxd20 Offline


Registered: 07/17/05
Posts: 214
Loc: Cleveland, OH
I just want to clear up some things because there seems to be confusion in this thread.

The Volt is not a normal EV. It gives you about 40 miles on a charge, then switches on its engine to generate electricity and you can keep going. So you can keep driving forever... cross country if you like... without plugging in.

I myself have a 32 mile round trip commute each day. I could charge the Volt each night for about 1/10th of what the commute would cost in gasoline. It perfectly handles Monday through Friday, and Sunday trips to church. Trips to grandma's house on Saturday's would be 1/2 on gas.

It's the perfect antidote for the "range anxiety" that comes with a normal EV - worrying that having to run an extra errand or being called somewhere unexpectedly will leave you stranded.

And it means the Volt can be the ONLY car in a family.

Someone asked about the crossover point, aka when does the engine kick in. Actually the engine can be turned on manually using "Hold" mode. "Hold" mode is designed to keep your battery at its current charge level by running the ICE. Otherwise let it do its own thing and it manages the cutovers for you automatically.

I plan on getting one as soon as my current lease is up in 4 months. The prices have dropped significantly. After tax credits and rebates, a new Volt can be had for under $25,000 and will save hundreds to thousands in gas costs each year.
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#3491374 - 09/23/14 04:24 PM Re: Volt 23,662 miles Factory Fill [Re: OneEyeJack]
PandaBear Offline


Registered: 08/05/02
Posts: 12555
Loc: Silicon Valley
Originally Posted By: OneEyeJack
The Volt was not successful in Taxi service in California. Two problems. It's limited to 3 passengers instead of the traditional 4 and reliability was a problem.


I don't think Volt is any less reliable than a typical car. Of course if you are comparing it against Prius V you will have 3 very big problems:

1) It cost a lot more because it is a plug in EV, and Taxi doesn't care about plugging in as it is always on the road.

2) It is much smaller than a Prius V, actually nothing else is going to beat a Prius V on volume per fuel cost in the market.

3) The Prius power train as you said, is just too reliable of a benchmark, among any power train setup out there (maybe except long haul diesel truck).


Edited by PandaBear (09/23/14 04:25 PM)
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