Chevy Bolt owners in Tucson area? - Page 3 - Chevy Bolt EV Forum
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post #21 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-30-2019, 08:25 PM
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In Tucson, summer is later this week. Then it will be time to plug in the Bolt to optimize the battery system cooling effect. I have tired, but failed to find some threads on what is the best strategy for very hot days and nights. If someone knows some threads with good advice, please post a link.

I have one specific question. Somewhere the manual states that when plugged in the cooling system activates more frequently (couldn't find it today). If I am using time of departure charging, will the battery cooling system be as active as if I use the plug and charge immediate option?

Any other specific recommendation, except move to a cooler climate, would be appreciated.
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post #22 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-30-2019, 09:14 PM
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Originally Posted by ArizonaJon View Post
In Tucson, summer is later this week. Then it will be time to plug in the Bolt to optimize the battery system cooling effect. I have tired, but failed to find some threads on what is the best strategy for very hot days and nights. If someone knows some threads with good advice, please post a link.

I have one specific question. Somewhere the manual states that when plugged in the cooling system activates more frequently (couldn't find it today). If I am using time of departure charging, will the battery cooling system be as active as if I use the plug and charge immediate option?

Any other specific recommendation, except move to a cooler climate, would be appreciated.
I'm in southern New Mexico and we had 27 days over 100F last year. Cooling the house with evaporative cooling, so I removed the return air filter and an access door on the furnace in the garage to divert some cool air into the insulated garage. Was able to keep the garage at or below 86F during the summer. This way I avoided keeping the car plugged in all the time.
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post #23 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-01-2019, 01:07 PM
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I'm in southern New Mexico and we had 27 days over 100F last year. Cooling the house with evaporative cooling, so I removed the return air filter and an access door on the furnace in the garage to divert some cool air into the insulated garage. Was able to keep the garage at or below 86F during the summer. This way I avoided keeping the car plugged in all the time.
This seems like a really good idea. It makes me wonder if there is a business and technology opportunity, particularly in the hotter parts of the US, to find ways to control temperatures in garages. I don't know if this will help preserve EV batteries and EVs in general, but maybe it would.

For my own existing house, I'm thinking to add moderate garage temperature control to the list to discuss with a contractor, though it's a long and expensive and distracting list.

2013 Chevy Volt
[looking to trade it someday for a used BEV with a well-preserved battery pack (probably liquid-cooled) and 200+ miles of range.]

Leased Nissan Leaf 2012-2015
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post #24 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-01-2019, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by ArizonaJon View Post
In Tucson, summer is later this week. Then it will be time to plug in the Bolt to optimize the battery system cooling effect. I have tired, but failed to find some threads on what is the best strategy for very hot days and nights. If someone knows some threads with good advice, please post a link.

I have one specific question. Somewhere the manual states that when plugged in the cooling system activates more frequently (couldn't find it today). If I am using time of departure charging, will the battery cooling system be as active as if I use the plug and charge immediate option?

Any other specific recommendation, except move to a cooler climate, would be appreciated.

I don't own a Bolt, and my response is not directly to your point, but I do have a kind of different-but-related suggestion or pet-topic that may or may not apply as much (if at all) to a Bolt or other modern liquid-cooled vehicle. I used to mention this to fellow drivers here once in awhile.

My suggestion is to avoid, if possible, charging (or even parking) in the direct sun, and particularly avoid public charging in direct sun during the warmer months. The immediate extreme example that comes to mind is a DCFC with no shade, but it could also include an L2 where you will be parked for awhile, or just a decision at the airport long-term parking lot of whether to spend a few extra dollars and park in a shaded spot rather than under direct sun. Choose the shade if you can, in my view. It is a practice borne out of a more extreme situation where I had an air-cooled Leaf and it seemed best just to err on the side of caution. I don't really "know" that this will help, but part of how I think of it is that I know sometimes my body will tell me "yeesh, it's hot, you need to get out of the sun ASAP". If our cars and batteries could talk, maybe they would also say this. Yes, I understand that in a way a Bolt running its cooling may already be taking effective measures.

I used to argue a bit that most or all public stations in Arizona should come with a Ramada or shade of some sort, but unfortunately too often this attempted suggestion would get side-tracked by someone wanting to talk up onsite solar panels. Clean energy charging is great, but it is not the point I was trying to make.

Now, I should immediately add, since I do not own a Bolt, that for all I know, the liquid cooling and other programming onboard the Bolt obliterate the need for this sort of caution, so I really don't know, but just an idea.

PS: On the airport parking:

https://www.plugshare.com/location/45956

Over the years, this one particular lot has emerged as the only one (so far) offering (L1 wall-plug) charging in shaded spots. Unfortunately they have not hard-wired yet for J1772, and their plugs sometimes do require a check to verify they are hot before you leave your car and go get on your flight, so I have learned to just make sure my car is not only plugged in but actually charging. I do recommend "joining" this company for free and getting their RFID card if you have not done this already. It's just slightly more convenient to make reservations and keep track of bonus points earned and such. I did run into a Bolt driver at a TEVA meeting who discussed with me that he was really pleased with this airport parking option. This is not a big-town airport, and Tucson does not yet have a lot of electric vehicles, so others from bigger cities with lots of EVs may regard all of this as very small-time stuff, but I've been really happy to see this parking lot come along a bit in what it is offering, though they still need to finish the job and hardwire some L1 J1772 in there, IMO.

PPS: As I think about it, maybe at the airport, if you can afford it, a better option arguably is to park in the garage away from the wall/window spots, and just stay much much more out of the sun. I don't think they offer charging there yet.

2013 Chevy Volt
[looking to trade it someday for a used BEV with a well-preserved battery pack (probably liquid-cooled) and 200+ miles of range.]

Leased Nissan Leaf 2012-2015

Last edited by jlsoaz; 06-01-2019 at 01:50 PM.
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post #25 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-01-2019, 02:09 PM
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I don't own a Bolt, and my response is not directly to your point, but I do have a kind of different-but-related suggestion or pet-topic that may or may not apply as much (if at all) to a Bolt or other modern liquid-cooled vehicle. I used to mention this to fellow drivers here once in awhile.

My suggestion is to avoid, if possible, charging (or even parking) in the direct sun, and particularly avoid public charging in direct sun during the warmer months. The immediate extreme example that comes to mind is a DCFC with no shade, but it could also include an L2 where you will be parked for awhile, or just a decision at the airport long-term parking lot of whether to spend a few extra dollars and park in a shaded spot rather than under direct sun. Choose the shade if you can, in my view. It is a practice borne out of a more extreme situation where I had an air-cooled Leaf and it seemed best just to err on the side of caution. I don't really "know" that this will help, but part of how I think of it is that I know sometimes my body will tell me "yeesh, it's hot, you need to get out of the sun ASAP". If our cars and batteries could talk, maybe they would also say this. Yes, I understand that in a way a Bolt running its cooling may already be taking effective measures.

I used to argue a bit that most or all public stations in Arizona should come with a Ramada or shade of some sort, but unfortunately too often this attempted suggestion would get side-tracked by someone wanting to talk up onsite solar panels. Clean energy charging is great, but it is not the point I was trying to make.

Now, I should immediately add, since I do not own a Bolt, that for all I know, the liquid cooling and other programming onboard the Bolt obliterate the need for this sort of caution, so I really don't know, but just an idea.

PS: On the airport parking:

https://www.plugshare.com/location/45956

Over the years, this one particular lot has emerged as the only one (so far) offering (L1 wall-plug) charging in shaded spots. Unfortunately they have not hard-wired yet for J1772, and their plugs sometimes do require a check to verify they are hot before you leave your car and go get on your flight, so I have learned to just make sure my car is not only plugged in but actually charging. I do recommend "joining" this company for free and getting their RFID card if you have not done this already. It's just slightly more convenient to make reservations and keep track of bonus points earned and such. I did run into a Bolt driver at a TEVA meeting who discussed with me that he was really pleased with this airport parking option. This is not a big-town airport, and Tucson does not yet have a lot of electric vehicles, so others from bigger cities with lots of EVs may regard all of this as very small-time stuff, but I've been really happy to see this parking lot come along a bit in what it is offering, though they still need to finish the job and hardwire some L1 J1772 in there, IMO.

PPS: As I think about it, maybe at the airport, if you can afford it, a better option arguably is to park in the garage away from the wall/window spots, and just stay much much more out of the sun. I don't think they offer charging there yet.
Thanks for your reply. Currently I only charge using a L2 charger in my garage. So no direct sun or fast DC charging. For the Bolt, it seems the magic temperature to plug in for battery cooling is 90. So far this year the garage has not gotten above 90. I got the Bolt in September so I have no idea what the garage temperature will be when we have a long spell at or above 110. Of course cooling the battery in an enclosed garage will add additional heat to the garage. But I still expect it to stay much cooler than the maximum outside temperature.

I saw some airport parking offers charging options. However since I am retired, my flying is now very limited and I usually fly out of Phoenix (I have missed too many connecting flights due to delays or cancellations in Tucson) where I have my car parked in at a hotel remote from the airport. But if I fly from Tucson, I will certainly park in a covered area.
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post #26 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-01-2019, 11:06 PM
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Thanks for your reply. Currently I only charge using a L2 charger in my garage. So no direct sun or fast DC charging. For the Bolt, it seems the magic temperature to plug in for battery cooling is 90. So far this year the garage has not gotten above 90. I got the Bolt in September so I have no idea what the garage temperature will be when we have a long spell at or above 110. Of course cooling the battery in an enclosed garage will add additional heat to the garage. But I still expect it to stay much cooler than the maximum outside temperature.

I saw some airport parking offers charging options. However since I am retired, my flying is now very limited and I usually fly out of Phoenix (I have missed too many connecting flights due to delays or cancellations in Tucson) where I have my car parked in at a hotel remote from the airport. But if I fly from Tucson, I will certainly park in a covered area.
Regarding flying out of Phoenix:

I can't argue with that, .... much better direct flight selection and prices.... but it's further away for me (I'm near the border) so I often fly out of Tucson instead. I will say I recently tried this lot near PHX to see about their claim of charging:

https://www.plugshare.com/location/53514

I wasn't able to plug in due to some confusion, but I'll give it another try next time. The plugs they had set up were in covered parking and fwiw my impression was that the program to see if EV drivers wanted to park and charge there was kind of new, and they were pleasant when I chatted with them about it, and so I just wanted to be encouraging. A fair number of EVs did seem to be plugged in and charging (even though some other spots were ICE'd). Separately, a Phoenix area driver was trying to tell me this one is the way to go:

https://www.plugshare.com/location/99112

but I just have a PHEV and don't care that much about arriving back to a full charge, and don't feel like I need valet parking/charging.

2013 Chevy Volt
[looking to trade it someday for a used BEV with a well-preserved battery pack (probably liquid-cooled) and 200+ miles of range.]

Leased Nissan Leaf 2012-2015
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post #27 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-02-2019, 11:29 AM
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By the way, all, it looks like the Benson DCFC is finally officially up and running:

https://www.electrifyamerica.com/locate-charger
https://www.plugshare.com/location/174439

2013 Chevy Volt
[looking to trade it someday for a used BEV with a well-preserved battery pack (probably liquid-cooled) and 200+ miles of range.]

Leased Nissan Leaf 2012-2015
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post #28 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-29-2019, 05:24 PM
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For the Tucson or other hot-climate Bolt owners - can any of you speak to the question of battery degradation? I know, all EVS have degradation, but having been through undue Leaf degradation 2012-2015, and now going through some Volt issues, I'm wondering if I eventually trade in for a Bolt if it will be out of the frying pan and into the fire, as far as a battery system that unfortunately simply can't quite take the heat past 30 or 50 or 100k miles.

I may also shout this message out separately to the broader forum.

2013 Chevy Volt
[looking to trade it someday for a used BEV with a well-preserved battery pack (probably liquid-cooled) and 200+ miles of range.]

Leased Nissan Leaf 2012-2015
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