Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Pity the Poor Midwestern Tesla Owners

See, there's this problem with lithium batteries....and Ticker brings it up as a public service.

...I remind you that lithium batteries cannot be charged below 32F, and all electric vehicles must prohibit that, because if you don't the batteries will be internally damaged and subject to shorting without notice at a later date, which means a nasty battery fire.

Now if you're parked in very cold temperatures but plugged into wall power then the vehicle can use that wall power to heat the battery pack and keep it from going below 32F.  But when driving if it's cold enough the vehicle will have to use some of its stored power to do that as well as keep the cabin warm and move the car, which has a potentially-serious impact on range.

Much worse, however, is if you park the vehicle outside where there is no shore power available and it gets very cold.  In that case the vehicle has only two options: Shut down entirely and prohibit charging until the pack warms up or consume power in the pack to keep the battery above freezing temperatures.

In the second case that only works until the pack runs out of stored energy, of course, at which point the first option is the only one remaining.  This in turn means you get to call a towtruck since the car can't move under its own power as the battery is exhausted.

What's worse is that it may take several hours once you have shore power available (e.g. you tow it to a garage and plug it in) before the pack is confirmed to be warm enough to accept a charge again....
Well, these people all bought the damn things because they are Virtuous Green People, right?  What could be more Virtuously Green than keeping the car in your garage and WALKING to work?


1 comment:

Unknown said...

I will never own an electric car.