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I finally used my $750 option.

7662 Views 36 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  Fivedoor
I took a trip this last weekend up to Sacramento with my wife to visit friends. We took the Bolt and I had confidence because I have done this trip before and there was enough range before. However my confidence was misplaced. I failed to account for my wife's desire to use the heater, I failed to leave with a full battery, only hilltop and I failed to account for a 24 mile round trip side jaunt to a nice restaurant.

When it was time to go home, the GOM showed exactly the range available that I would need. I did suggest no use of the heater and hypermiling and likely would have worked, but my wife actually said no. She did not want to experience first hand range anxiety and there a dangerous 18 mile stretch of highway at the end of our route home that you don't under any circumstance want your car to konk out. She said let's do plan B and find a place to charge.

So I used my Plugshare app that I also have never used to find a CCS station with DCFC. It was located at a SMUD (Sacramento Municipal Utilities District) office building downtown Sacramento. It was not easy to spot, or obvious in any way. We did find it though. The station was provided by Green Lots and I did not have a Green Lots account.

The good news is, we got a charge and we got home easily. Now the bad- The unit was supposed to except credit cards, but the unit's credit card reader completely failed to function at all. Totally dead. So I decided to open an account with Green Lots with my phone and thumbs after trying all sorts of cards and ideas to get the reader to activate. Once I got all signed up (it takes a while as you might imagine to go through all that over a phone) was able to activate the charger, but it prompted me to then insert my credit card for payment. Again the credit card reader was a total failure.

As the last resort, I put money on account with Green Lots. The minimum is $25. This actually got the electrons to flow. My charging session cost me $3.06. Now I have my remainder of the $25 floating in the ether somewhere. I'm not sure how soon, if ever I will use that up.

There was frustration and my wife was a trooper and read her Kindle while I flailed outside. It's OK because I still consider myself an early adopter of a new technology (even though I'm not that early compared to some of you guys). The point of this story/rant is, the charging infrastructure for non-Teslas is pretty poor so far IMO. Much work needs to be done. It should have been as easy as gassing up my old car, but it wasn't.
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Also Equipped by not used

We also have DCFC with our 2017 Bolt and a full deck of cards for all the chargers, but have not used any of them yet (13 months and counting). We also have the JDap to use Tesla Destination chargers. We have L2 in the garage and that is all we have needed here in Albuquerque. We love our Bolt. BTW: unlike some of you guys, my wife really, really loves the Bolt; it was her idea. So hang in there your wife will eventually love it. We have made some short trips without needed recharge. But charging on the road from here would be difficult. Assume only going on interstates, I40 or I25. Going north there is a DCFC mid way between ABQ and Santa Fe (to close, not needed) and 2 in Santa Fe and one under construction (UC). Nothing north of there until Pueblo Colorado, which has an DCFC (UC) and 4 L2. From there north is good in Colorado. Going west there is nothing until L2 in Holbrook Arizona, then L2 in Flagstaff and Needles CA. Victorville CA has L3. From there one is in California heaven. Going east there is an L2 in Tucumcary NM, and L3 in Amarillo. Then east to L2 in Elk City, L3 in Weatherford (UC) and Oklahoma City has lots. Going south there is an L2 in Socorro, Las Cruces, and El Paso. The first L3 is Fort Stockton (UC). Then L2 in Iraan TX (but some miles off the interstate), L2 in Comfort/Bourne, and San Antonio. An L3 in San Antonio (UC). There are a few chargers (mainly Tesla destination) off the interstates, but they would not help extend trips. Clearly things are improving (UC), but making some of these jumps would be tricky if something was not working we would be ... Well, you know.
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