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This time, I'll report on a 720-mile round trip I made. I needed attend a work-related meeting in a city about 360 miles away, and I decided to go out and back the same day. But It was a long day, requiring me to get up way earlier than usual (well before the crack of dawn) and didn't get me home until late in the evening.

I set out from home in my Bolt (not charged to full!) and drove for about 20 minutes before hitting my first stop. Parked up and spent about 75 minutes cooling my heels, which seemed pretty long, although I did have a chance to use the bathroom. I could have gotten something to eat, but I wasn't really hungry, instead I just caught up on email and other work business. Finally, I continued my journey, but I had only travelled for about an hour before it was time to stop again for half an hour. Then twenty minutes more driving before it was time to stop again this time for an hour.

Once I'd had my meeting, it was time to head back. This time following the return path, I travelled for about an hour in fairly heavy traffic, but that initial leg had two stops, one short-ish stop (where I attempted to add more energy to the vehicle but there was no operating DC fast charger) and then a longer one ending that leg, which combined to be about a 100-minute pause. Then it was back retracing my outbound route for just under an hour, and before stopping again for the final time. This time under ten minutes, before I was back on the road in my Bolt for twenty more minutes to get home.

Overall, I spent almost 8.5 hours on this journey, and worse, a staggering 54% of it was spent cooling my heels waiting. After this experience, I can understand folks like @ZoomZoom who say that having to sit and wait when you want to just go is pretty frustrating.

It wasn't all done in the Bolt. I flew.

To account for the vagaries of traffic, provide time to park, go through TSA checks, and handle the fact that the plane boards half an hour befire departure, I arrived at the airport 75 minutes before each flight. At the far end I had a rental car to pick up and return (which required a stop to put gas in it, something I did mention very obliquely — “I attempted to add more energy to the vehicle [gasoline, and I succeeded] but there was no operating DC fast charger [because it was a gas station]”). Because of the flight schedule, I need to leave much sooner than might be desirable and had to wait at the destination for an hour (actually more) before the meeting I was there for began.

The key thing about this is that it's normal. No one expects to just be able to fly without some waiting (and potential for delay — thankfully on this trip everything ran on time). In fact, longer/more-complex air-travel may require a layover.

I wrote it the way I did to remind folks that as beyond the pale as some people might seem to think stopping to charge an EV is, we routinely accept far longer delays for other forms of transportation. And despite my claim of being frustrated by the delays (like @ZoomZoom), that's false (just color for the story). I easily found things to do and the time passed quickly. It was a long day though.
 

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Good reason to get the in-car wifi... then you can do stuff on your laptop while you wait.
 

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This time, I'll report on a 720-mile round trip I made. I needed attend a work-related meeting in a city about 360 miles away, and I decided to go out and back the same day. But It was a long day, requiring me to get up way earlier than usual (well before the crack of dawn) and didn't get me home until late in the evening.

I set out from home in my Bolt (not charged to full!) and drove for about 20 minutes before hitting my first stop. Parked up and spent about 75 minutes cooling my heels, which seemed pretty long, although I did have a chance to use the bathroom. I could have gotten something to eat, but I wasn't really hungry, instead I just caught up on email and other work business. Finally, I continued my journey, but I had only travelled for about an hour before it was time to stop again for half an hour. Then twenty minutes more driving before it was time to stop again this time for an hour.

Once I'd had my meeting, it was time to head back. This time following the return path, I travelled for about an hour in fairly heavy traffic, but that initial leg had two stops, one short-ish stop (where I attempted to add more energy to the vehicle but there was no operating DC fast charger) and then a longer one ending that leg, which combined to be about a 100-minute pause. Then it was back retracing my outbound route for just under an hour, and before stopping again for the final time. This time under ten minutes, before I was back on the road in my Bolt for twenty more minutes to get home.

Overall, I spent almost 8.5 hours on this journey, and worse, a staggering 54% of it was spent cooling my heels waiting. After this experience, I can understand folks like @ZoomZoom who say that having to sit and wait when you want to just go is pretty frustrating.

It wasn't all done in the Bolt. I flew.

To account for the vagaries of traffic, provide time to park, go through TSA checks, and handle the fact that the plane boards half an hour befire departure, I arrived at the airport 75 minutes before each flight. At the far end I had a rental car to pick up and return (which required a stop to put gas in it, something I did mention very obliquely — “I attempted to add more energy to the vehicle [gasoline, and I succeeded] but there was no operating DC fast charger [because it was a gas station]”). Because of the flight schedule, I need to leave much sooner than might be desirable and had to wait at the destination for an hour (actually more) before the meeting I was there for began.

The key thing about this is that it's normal. No one expects to just be able to fly without some waiting (and potential for delay — thankfully on this trip everything ran on time). In fact, longer/more-complex air-travel may require a layover.

I wrote it the way I did to remind folks that as beyond the pale as some people might seem to think stopping to charge an EV is, we routinely accept far longer delays for other forms of transportation. And despite my claim of being frustrated by the delays (like @ZoomZoom), that's false (just color for the story). I easily found things to do and the time passed quickly. It was a long day though.
But when you fly, you expect to have a delay going through TSA, though I fly armed (work perk), so I skip TSA altogether but I do wait at the gate for a bit. The expectations for most aren't the same. And it's a different type of person (not bad) that will take the crutch of remote charging. A good participant here, I think it was you, once posted that 99% of EV owners can charge solely at home or destination based. (My apologies if it wasn't you). But I get it. You're trying a slight of hand trick to negate the charging time that can occur on some trips. As for the pale that some people think .... it's actually more than some. The #1 reason in my opinion that the EV cars haven't taken off (pun intended) is that a lot of people have range anxiety before they even buy it. My choice of words, but I hope you understand what I'm trying to say. In 'Merica, people want to go .... they want to get there. It's one of the most selfish countries on the planet and I've been to many. There are some that like to stop and smell the roses, but most want to get going. The success of Tesla is because of their Super Charger network, they have busted their ass as a company, and their earnings to dispel the concerns of charging by putting them in a lot of places and very fast. Most people don't want to stop and charge. I'm hoping to learn to accept it more, as we have grown to accept the airline experience.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
A good participant here, I think it was you, once posted that 99% of EV owners can charge solely at home or destination based.
Might have been me. Here's the sort of percentages I might give…

In almost two years of ownership, I've DC-fast-charged my Bolt four times, and all of them were by choice (I could instead have charged overnight while away from home). Total time at DCFC stations is 106 minutes for a total of about 60 kWh. I've put about 3300 kW into the car at home, and a further 56 kW at (paid) level-2 chargers away from home. So, 60/3415 = 1.75% of my charging has been done on DCFC. (Home charging cost $425, away charging cost $36, so 7.8% of my cost is from not-at-home charging.)

In the same two years, driving an ICE vehicle (my Golf TDI), I'd have burned through about 500 gallons of fuel. If we say my average fill-up was about 11-gallons, let's call it 45 stops at the gas station. If each stop is only 5 minutes (and I'm lucky enough that it's not really any time to detour), that's 225 minutes total. So I'd have spent more time refueling an ICE vehicle than I did filling my Bolt (and it would have cost about four times more).

What's interesting is that no-one complains about the nickel-and-diming of time that happens with an ICE vehicle. An annoying five minutes here, another one there, always too short to do anything other than spend the time just standing waiting while the car fills up (well, you can clean the windows in the brief bit of dead time).

The #1 reason in my opinion that the EV cars haven't taken off (pun intended) is that a lot of people have range anxiety before they even buy it.
But no-one complains about “fill-up annoyance” for ICE vehicles. That every once in a while you go to go somewhere and you're like “oh crap, I need to get gas”, and suddenly you've lost five or ten minutes that hadn't bargained on because you'd forgotten you'd driven home the night before with the “fill-up with gas” idiot light on but ignoring it because you were dog tired and you'd “do it tomorrow”.

Most people don't want to stop and charge. I'm hoping to learn to accept it more, as we have grown to accept the airline experience.
People accept the need to stop and fill up with gas about once a week. Someday that will seem bizarre. In the future (and the present for EV owners), stopping to fill up will only be something you only need to do on special occasions a few times a year (when you're making a long trip).
 

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People accept the need to stop and fill up with gas about once a week. Someday that will seem bizarre. In the future (and the present for EV owners), stopping to fill up will only be something you only need to do on special occasions a few times a year (when you're making a long trip).
Look forward to that day, sooner the better. haha

Example on camera :)

 

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If each stop is only 5 minutes
My old Suburban with a 42 gallon tank would sometimes take longer to fill than that. But I couldn't always fill it when gas got expensive as the pumps at Sam's Club would stop at $100. So I had to fill it more often because I couldn't fill it all the way.
 

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Might have been me. Here's the sort of percentages I might give…

In almost two years of ownership, I've DC-fast-charged my Bolt four times, and all of them were by choice (I could instead have charged overnight while away from home). Total time at DCFC stations is 106 minutes for a total of about 60 kWh. I've put about 3300 kW into the car at home, and a further 56 kW at (paid) level-2 chargers away from home. So, 60/3415 = 1.75% of my charging has been done on DCFC. (Home charging cost $425, away charging cost $36, so 7.8% of my cost is from not-at-home charging.)

In the same two years, driving an ICE vehicle (my Golf TDI), I'd have burned through about 500 gallons of fuel. If we say my average fill-up was about 11-gallons, let's call it 45 stops at the gas station. If each stop is only 5 minutes (and I'm lucky enough that it's not really any time to detour), that's 225 minutes total. So I'd have spent more time refueling an ICE vehicle than I did filling my Bolt (and it would have cost about four times more).

What's interesting is that no-one complains about the nickel-and-diming of time that happens with an ICE vehicle. An annoying five minutes here, another one there, always too short to do anything other than spend the time just standing waiting while the car fills up (well, you can clean the windows in the brief bit of dead time).



But no-one complains about “fill-up annoyance” for ICE vehicles. That every once in a while you go to go somewhere and you're like “oh crap, I need to get gas”, and suddenly you've lost five or ten minutes that hadn't bargained on because you'd forgotten you'd driven home the night before with the “fill-up with gas” idiot light on but ignoring it because you were dog tired and you'd “do it tomorrow”.



People accept the need to stop and fill up with gas about once a week. Someday that will seem bizarre. In the future (and the present for EV owners), stopping to fill up will only be something you only need to do on special occasions a few times a year (when you're making a long trip).
I wasn’t comparing ICE refueling over the course of a year and you’ve missed the boat, in fact I think you showed up to the wrong pier. You singled me out, I get it. But no where on this forum have I complained about lifetime refueling times of an ICE. My comments have always been about the denial here about spending 2 hours recharging on trips. Feel free to tell me how you would have stopped to pee, and eat dinner. And lunch. In my year, since I’ve charged 99.99999 percent at home, I’ve saved a ton of gas station time. Your point on that is dead on. Speaking of gas, you opened the can of worms. You spent a lot more for your Bolt than the ICE equiv. You spent about 20 grand more. Want to calculate your ROI if you’re going to bring up gassing up? But getting back to the point, you have a valid point ... I haven’t been to a gas station more than 10 times in the last year. I would have stopped 5 times that. The concept of having to hunt down a charging station, praying it accepts the charge card, hold the charge cord just right so it starts charging, hope customer service is open if you have to call, pray it has more than 24kW, it isn’t ICEd over etc ... concerns I don’t have gassing up. These are things I read about here, daily. My state sucks with infrastructure and that has biased me. When I go on a road trip, I want to get there in the least amount of time. I puke at the concept of driving below the speed limit. I cringe that I’m penalized because I want to turn the heat on. I have a road trip up north in 2 weeks, and thanks to you I have a thingy to grab some stats for the journey but for those not in sunny California life is different.
 

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Speaking of gas, you opened the can of worms. You spent a lot more for your Bolt than the ICE equiv. You spent about 20 grand more.
Show me a $16K ICE car that goes 0-60 in 6.5 seconds. I actually don't know a US EV that is the equivalent of a $16K ICE car... maybe an old Nissan Leaf with severely degraded battery, which would probably cost just $5-8K.
 
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Discussion Starter #9
You singled me out, I get it.
You're more visible than other members of the forum because you tend to paint a vivid picture of your visceral reaction against waiting, so you stand out a bit.

In my year, since I’ve charged 99.99999 percent at home, I’ve saved a ton of gas station time. Your point on that is dead on.
But getting back to the point, you have a valid point ... I haven’t been to a gas station more than 10 times in the last year. I would have stopped 5 times that.
Thanks!

Speaking of gas, you opened the can of worms. You spent a lot more for your Bolt than the ICE equiv. You spent about 20 grand more. Want to calculate your ROI if you’re going to bring up gassing up?
I got $10,000 in rebates plus some GM/dealer discounts, which took the car down to a similar price to what we paid for my Golf TDI.

But you're right, the money saved from refueling is just gravy. I didn't buy a Bolt to “save money”. Anyone who buys a brand new car thinking it'll “save money” is probably deluding themselves.

But no where on this forum have I complained about lifetime refueling times of an ICE.
And that's kinda my point, people don't complain about that, because it's normal.

My comments have always been about the denial here about spending 2 hours recharging on trips.
And that's exactly why I posted! Because in one sense, you're making a valid point, and yet every day across the globe, about three million people take commercial flights which usually require a bunch of waiting, and yet few consider air-travel totally unacceptable because waiting around is built into the process.

But also, of the four DCFC stops I've made, the longest was 45 minutes, the shortest was 9 minutes, and the average is 26.5 minutes. The 9 minute session comes from the only trip where I've charged twice on the same day, and that was because it was my first trip involving DCFC and I wanted to make sure it was all going to work (my EVgo account and the car itself) before committing to a route that would require DCFC.

Thus far, I've never had a day where more than an hour was spent charging at DCFC stations. There are people who've spent longer charging, but they attempt more ambitious trips than me. The furthest our Bolt has made it away from home so far is about 215 miles (and thats only because I took a circuitous backroads route for fun).

Feel free to tell me how you would have stopped to pee, and eat dinner. And lunch.
At airports, while waiting around, lots of people do eat lunch and dinner, and a ton stop to pee. Others read, chat to each other, listen to music, take a nap, etc. At the airport, people seem to manage just fine at passing the time.

That said, for some trips I do still take the Golf TDI, see below.

The concept of having to hunt down a charging station, praying it accepts the charge card, hold the charge cord just right so it starts charging, hope customer service is open if you have to call, pray it has more than 24kW, it isn’t ICEd over etc ... concerns I don’t have gassing up. These are things I read about here, daily.
Right. People do seem to gloss over how craptastic the experience can be. Although it's always been fine for me, frankly, I'm still kinda wary of DCFC. I think it's way too crappy and patchy. Thus far, every single trip I've done could have been done without DCFC with charging overnight at my destination.

But I don't think those things are intrinsic to the experience. These days PlugShare can exclude low-power chargers, and apps can tell you when the chargers are in use, and parking enforcement is getting better over time. It does seem like it's slowly improving. Not nearly as fast as I'd like, though.

Right now there are definitely journeys I'm unwilling to make. Rather than have a trip that has a ton of uncertainty, I'll take the Golf TDI rather than the Bolt if the journey is really long or the charging options leave it feeling too risky. In principle there's a 430-mile trip I could make, but it would require three stops totaling 1 hour 40 minutes. Honestly that doesn't seem so bad for the amount of time stopped, but might be a bit annoying by the third stop. But the reality is, I hadn't made that drive in years now anyway in any motor vehicle. It's quicker to fly.

My state sucks with infrastructure and that has biased me. When I go on a road trip, I want to get there in the least amount of time.
That's why I fly. Even with all the waiting around in my 720-mile journey described above, it was still way faster flying than driving. And vastly less tiring.

I puke at the concept of driving below the speed limit. I cringe that I’m penalized because I want to turn the heat on.
I've never done those things; in fact I think doing them is almost always stupid. It's a walking anti-commercial for EV ownership.

I have a road trip up north in 2 weeks, and thanks to you I have a thingy to grab some stats for the journey but for those not in sunny California life is different.
Preconditioning helps, but yes, extreme cold or extreme heat does affect range.
 

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Nice write up and an interesting way to view travel. The thing is, when we fly, there are no other options. You have to put up with the "hurry up and wait" things. When we drive, there are options. My wife and I recently completed a 600 mile round trip in our Bolt. I don't mind spending 30-45 minutes to charge up, my wife...not so much. She wants to get on the road and travel. Yeah, we normally stop for 10-15 minutes in our ICE to use the bathroom, stretch our legs, etc, but not for 30-45 minutes. It didn't help that our first EA charge stop was problematic. Now my wife doesn't want to take any more long distance trips in our Bolt. She wants to drive our ICE and just get there. To me, the pros (no oil changes, no tune ups, cheaper cost per mile in general) outweigh the cons of EV driving, but guess which car we'll take on our next long distance trip. To my wife's credit, she agrees that more reliable networks are coming and longer range, faster charging cars are coming...they're just not here yet. So I guess that means we'll get a new car in a few years :) Have to take the good with the bad.
 

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Nice write up and an interesting way to view travel. The thing is, when we fly, there are no other options. You have to put up with the "hurry up and wait" things. When we drive, there are options. My wife and I recently completed a 600 mile round trip in our Bolt. I don't mind spending 30-45 minutes to charge up, my wife...not so much. She wants to get on the road and travel. Yeah, we normally stop for 10-15 minutes in our ICE to use the bathroom, stretch our legs, etc, but not for 30-45 minutes. It didn't help that our first EA charge stop was problematic. Now my wife doesn't want to take any more long distance trips in our Bolt. She wants to drive our ICE and just get there. To me, the pros (no oil changes, no tune ups, cheaper cost per mile in general) outweigh the cons of EV driving, but guess which car we'll take on our next long distance trip. To my wife's credit, she agrees that more reliable networks are coming and longer range, faster charging cars are coming...they're just not here yet. So I guess that means we'll get a new car in a few years :) Have to take the good with the bad.
I'm with your wife on this issue (figuratively), and I see there are two sides to this equally. For me the pro's also outweigh the cons, I just see the car as a commuter car .... many see it as something different. No right or wrong.
 

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I live in Oregon, 23 miles outside of Eugene. We've owned our 2019 Bolt LT for 8 months. Never used any charger other than the L1 that came with it. Three trips to Portland, plugged in at my friends, several trips to the coast, no prob, No long trips taken 'cause we take our teardrop camper and ICE pickup. SF or LA means a flight. WE LOVE IT! ps Our most important reason is we don't stink.
 

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I have run completely out of gas twice, but haven't yet run completely out of electrons.
You’ll find the difference between the two is quite an eye opener if you were to compare the experience. I’m sure it has happened but most wont talk about it.
 

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You’ll find the difference between the two is quite an eye opener if you were to compare the experience. I’m sure it has happened but most wont talk about it.
I've never run a car out of juice. I would often run our Golf TDI down to 5–10%. In contrast, the lowest I've ever taken our Bolt was down to 13.33%, and that was just once. It's pretty rare that the Bolt dips below 50%.
 

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I've never run a car out of juice. I would often run our Golf TDI down to 5–10%. In contrast, the lowest I've ever taken our Bolt was down to 13.33%, and that was just once. It's pretty rare that the Bolt dips below 50%.
I took my Bolt down to reduced propulsion mode once. Otherwise I charge every other day or when the bar graph gets close to 50%, whichever comes first. But once, I was at 3/4 tank and on my way home had to divert into Illinois. On paper, the miles should have been ok. The plan though was to charge L2 at the toll plaza in IL on the way down. Got there, they were both broke. One the screen was dark, the other wouldn't take my card and customer service couldn't get it to 'go.' I lost 20 minutes on that. So I then went 20 minutes out of my way to hit a grocery store. Charged for 30 minutes, sat there, not for 'me'. But I did it. Then continued to pick up my stranded friend and I got him home. On my way to my house, it was scary. It was the winter weather that got me. I've done the journey many times in the summer. It was my first winter with an EV so I was still learning and absorbing the quirks of temperature to range.
 

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You’ll find the difference between the two is quite an eye opener if you were to compare the experience. I’m sure it has happened but most wont talk about it.

Haha! I'll talk about it cause I've done both.

1) Ran out of gas on a previous carb motorcycle. Had to walk a mile to get just one gallon of gas to make it back to the same gas station to fill back up.

2) Ran out of electrons in my first EV - a first gen Nissan Leaf only because I wanted to find out what happens after Turtle mode. Well I found out! DOA on the side of a major highway less than one mile from a Chademo. So I had to call AAA which doesn't deliver rescue electrons yet like gas and ended being towed to that Chademo.
 

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2) Ran out of electrons in my first EV - a first gen Nissan Leaf only because I wanted to find out what happens after Turtle mode. Well I found out! DOA on the side of a major highway less than one mile from a Chademo. So I had to call AAA which doesn't deliver rescue electrons yet like gas and ended being towed to that Chademo.
In the future, maybe the tow trucks will have a battery bank so you can plug in for a 10 minute charge instead.

Or better yet, have your own solar panel, so just chill out for the afternoon - no need for the tow truck - and you're good to go.
 

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LOL! One can only hope that a tow truck with a gigawatt battery becomes available in the future. As for the solar panel, I think I would have to chill for a week's worth of afternoons to get enought juice for one mile.

Hmm, now I do have a small solar panel with an inverter. That could be my next experiment...from home of course. I suspect solar charging will be much much more painful than L1 charging. Stay tuned!
 

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LOL! One can only hope that a tow truck with a gigawatt battery becomes available in the future. As for the solar panel, I think I would have to chill for a week's worth of afternoons to get enought juice for one mile.

Hmm, now I do have a small solar panel with an inverter. That could be my next experiment...from home of course. I suspect solar charging will be much much more painful than L1 charging. Stay tuned!
He said he needed just 1 mile.

1 KWh gets you 4 miles, probably 6 if you drive on turtle mode... if you can get 240V 32A, it's just 10 minutes for 1 KWh of energy. You're sounding like you don't know about EVs.

The Tesla Truck claims 15 miles a day... that should be about 2 mile per hour around "noon". If you run out of juice in the late afternoon, probably need to call a tow truck.
 
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