By Tyrel on September 11, 2013
Today was a bit of a travel challenge for an EV, since we wanted to avoid using any Blink quick chargers and their absurd $5-per-session fee. We left fairly early from our campsite with a 100% charge. Since it didn’t take much to get to Castle Rock proper, we obviously didn’t charge there.
The next quick charger is in Centralia. We skipped this as we had plenty of charge to reach the next one, in Tumwater. We plugged in at Tumwater with a fairly low charge and charged for about 40 minutes — to the point where the quick charger turned off, which coincided exactly with the point at which it would be just as fast to charge on Level 2 (6.6 kW). I’m not sure if the car does this intentionally or not.
We carefully continued north. After Fort Lewis we switched from I-5 to WA-99 so we could go slower and conserve a bit of power. We arrived at the Walgreens in Des Moines, right on WA-99, at about noon. So we plugged in to the charger there and walked across the street to have some Mexican food for lunch. By the time we got back to the car, I calculated that we had enough charge to reach Magic Nissan of Everett, so we unplugged and continued.
We got the Low Battery Warning something like 5 miles before Magic Nissan. In the 2013 there’s quite a bit of range after the LBW, so this did not cause us any concern. When we reached Magic we had 15 miles on the guess-o-meter and 2/12 bars of charge still.
We charged for a few minutes so that we would have enough charge to drive to Trish’s dad’s house by Lynnwood then over to her mom’s house on South Whidbey. When we got out to charge, we suddenly realized how hot it was outside — we hadn’t noticed this in Des Moines or earlier in the day. But it was in the high 80s in Everett. Just after we finished charging, the car displayed 8/12 battery temperature bars, which ties for the highest we’ve ever seen. The actual temperatures were showing about 108 degrees.
We visited Trish’s dad then went to the island. I left the car on-ish while on the ferry so I could record GPS information with the LEAF Battery App, so we could see the path of the ferry in the charge level map.
I’ve plugged the car in to a welder plug in the shop and set a timer so we’ll be charged and ready to go in the morning. We’ll head up the island to cross at Deception Pass, rather than crossing at the ferry again, to save costs. We’ve done this once before in the LEAF and it was fine, so we’re not worried. We’ll probably hit Low Battery Warning before we get to Burlington, though.
After that we’ll head home, and get attacked by our cat who surely misses us.