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1153 mi round trip...central Virginia to Rochester and Ithaca, NY

943 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  GetOffYourGas
Got back last night from a seven day trip in the Bolt. We wanted to make it as stress free as possible, so we left home with 100% SOC. We left home at 8 am and drove up Rt 15 to our first charge at Gettysburg National Military Park, arriving with 34% SOC. Great location with picnic tables, restrooms, shade trees, cafe. The EVgo 50 kW charger worked flawlessly with the app. We got 32.7 kW in an hour, while eating lunch. The cafe closes at 5 pm. The gates and restrooms close at 10 pm.

We could have made Rochester in one day, but it would have required leaving before 7 am to make a critical 25 kW DC charger at a Chevy dealer. Rather than make it a forced march, we opted to stay at a motel with overnight charging. That worked out great, and we left the next morning with 100% SOC. We arrived at our lunch stop, in Livonia, NY to find the restaurant closed for renovations. We parked in the town lot behind the restaurant anyway. There were two Clipper Creek EVSEs. One was plugged into what appeared to be a local Leaf that had finished charging, and was probably parked there most of the time. I tried the other one, and it faulted, showing two red LEDs. I unplugged, and we headed across the street to an nice old diner. After ordering lunch, I went back to the lot, figuring I would unplug the Leaf, and use that one. When I arrived, the faulted EVSE had reset. This time it worked fine. There was another EVSE a few miles further up the road, and it turned out we would have had enough charge to make it without a boost, but this trip was meant to be low stress. Arrived in Rochester with 34% SOC also.

We visited family, and ran around Rochester for two days. I even made a side trip to the RG&E ChargePoint DC fast charger. They have two DC fast chargers in their lot, and one was supposed to be for public use. For whatever reason RG&E decided to make it for employees only. While checking it out, and taking pictures for PlugShare (now pulled down...probably by RG&E), two employees came out on their smoke breaks. Neither knew anything about them, or even what they were. Then a security guard came and asked me to leave. I asked him how many of the pickups, and SUVs in their lot ever used these. He just smiled.

Leaving Rochester with 100% SOC, we headed the two hours to Ithaca. Our friend wasn't home yet, so I figured we would take the opportunity to charge at the oldest DC charger in Ithaca. We drove over to Diane's Auto Repair. This old Greenlots 50 kW charger had seen better days. The screen had weird lines in the image, and it said it needed a reset, but the touch screen button didn't work. I tried the RFID card and the app, and it wouldn't start with either. I called tech support, and they started it for me. It was charging at 12 kW! I unplugged after a couple minutes, and we headed to the Chevy dealer to try our first charge on a 25 kW wall mount charger. There were a bunch of Volts there. Two were plugged into EVSEs. Going around the corner to the DC charger, we saw a Hyundai Ioniq charging.

Back at our friend's house, we plugged into the only outside outlet...on an old barn. Torque Pro showed 114 volt, at 8 amps, 0.90 kW. Didn't want to risk burning it down on 12 amps.. The next day we all hooked up with friends who drove their Bolt from Altamont, to hang out with us for the day. We met them at the Toyota/VW dealer. I plugged our Bolt into one of two DC fast chargers. The five of us piled into our friend's Bolt and we headed off to hike around some falls, and eat lunch at a brewery. Came back to a 100% charge.

We headed out the next morning to our first charge at the Electrify America chargers in Bloomsburg, PA. Our phones don't have NFC, but the internet connection had worked great for me before in Virginia. Our provider's signal was so poor here that it wouldn't function. I have a credit card on file with Electrify America, but they only accept Visa/Mastercard on their CC reader. I called tech support, explaining the issue, expecting them to start it right up, as they have too many times before. This time they wanted me to move to another charger and try again. I explained that there was nothing wrong with the one I was parked in front of, and the result would be exactly the same at any of the others. They then checked with someone higher up the chain, and agreed to start the charger remotely. We went next door to the Arby's for lunch. Even though they had my account pulled up, we didn't receive a bill. Maybe it was free? I wish they offered an RFID card, or took all major credit cards.

Headed down the road to Gettysburg again. Arriving in the late afternoon, we plugged in and wandered around a bit. We came back to the car to find a gal and her son trying to use one of two, 240 volt EVSEs to charge her 100 kWh Model S. She had owned the car for a year and a half, and never used anything but Superchargers, and Destination chargers. She couldn't get the one at their hotel to work, and somebody there suggested it was a problem with the car. They had the Corded Mobile Connector out. This is the big brother version of our Gen 2 Mobile Connector. They were trying to figure out how to attach it to the EVSE plug. I got them to get out their bag of adapters, and explained what the various bits were for. They had the necessary J1772 adapter, but it turned out they would also need the SemaConnect app. The son quickly downloaded it to his phone, and it worked...sort of. The car was charging at a few hundred watts, and they said the car's screen didn't look right. Then it shut down. We tried several more times, with the same result. Maybe there actually is something wrong with the car, as the person at the hotel had suggested.

It was fascinating seeing a Tesla owner struggling with the public charging mess, but we needed to get going to limit our nighttime driving. We headed for home, stopping at a McDonald's for a quick dinner.

We arrived home at 9:45 pm, with 24% SOC. On the entire trip, we were never close to low, never seeing orange bars. We stopped at least once, for bathroom breaks, between each on-the-road charge session. It was no more grueling than when we have done this same trip in an ICE car. I don't get how folks do marathon road trips.

1153.3 miles, 4.5 mi/kWh average per the DIC, 251 kWh total according to Torque Pro.
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