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Well you still have 240 coming into it if it's only 20 years old (or even 60 years old). You should have plenty of amperage coming from the transformer, but you'd need to get the breaker box upgraded.
 

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How old is the wiring in your house? If it's 100 years old, then it's WAAAAAAAAY past time to get it upgraded. If it's been upgraded, you have 240 2-phase coming in off the transformer into your breaker box.
And if you don't do it your house will burn down, and your insurance company will say it is your fault and not pay anything!!!

Because we all know that this is how insurance works.

Just ask Butch.

Keith
 

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To the OP- The Prius Prime qualifies for $4,500 federal tax credit, and the upcoming RAV4 Prime qualifies for the full $7,500. That means the plug in version could cost less than the regular hybrid after taxes.

Regarding comments from "experts" that tell you about how insurance won't pay, or how something extremely safe and legal is reckless and dangerous:

Using a circuit combiner isn't dangerous because the outlets are still protected by breakers that won't allow over current to happen.

Home insurance covers fires created by negligence. You think people that fall asleep while smoking and accidentally burn down their home get a denied insurance claim?
 

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I'm gonna say the same thing everybody else is saying...

Upgrade your panel, pay the $1500, it's worth it, regardless of what car you end up buying. Anyways, that's about the same price as replacing all four tires on the Subaru, isn't it? 🤣 The panel probably looks like **** in there anyways, especially if it's been tandemed out so many times. BUT AT LEAST YOU HAVE BREAKERS!!!! Or rig in a second panel, or a sub panel. Plus, if you do buy an EV, you'll be cursing the day you were born if you're stuck charging at 120V, and upgrading your 15 amp outlet to 20 amps will get you exactly squat because the bolt will only charge at 12 amps max anyways.

The good news is, and it's been all over this forum, is that the stock charger that comes with the car can run at 220V, so you can just change that outlet to a 6-15, use the existing conductors at 220V, and use a plug shape changer, that way you'll get much faster charging without having to drag in new wires. Higher voltage, but the current, and hence the required wire size is the same at 12 amps. But we're getting way ahead of the game here.

As for your family? I can't speak to your dynamics, but charging up your EV is about the same price as drinking a few of their beers. It's not like tanking up your Subaru or siphoning gas out of your cousin's truck in the middle of the night. Just about everybody we visit is OK with our mooching. We can spend more time hanging out and not leaving early to fast charging on the road.

And where on earth do you work that they wouldn't let you plug in with an extension cord to draw $0.75 worth of electricity during your shift?
 

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Discussion Starter #27
To the OP- The Prius Prime qualifies for $4,500 federal tax credit, and the upcoming RAV4 Prime qualifies for the full $7,500. That means the plug in version could cost less than the regular hybrid after taxes.
Yes the RAV will be a serious contender as well because of that. I think it will all depend on price. Again I am leasing so I can’t really make a decision until next summer one way or the other because the difference in trade in value with what I owe on the lease is considerable.

The PHEV is really the best of both worlds without the inconvenience of charging.

I'm gonna say the same thing everybody else is saying...

Upgrade your panel, pay the $1500, it's worth it, regardless of what car you end up buying. Anyways, that's about the same price as replacing all four tires on the Subaru, isn't it? 🤣 The panel probably looks like **** in there anyways, especially if it's been tandemed out so many times. BUT AT LEAST YOU HAVE BREAKERS!!!! Or rig in a second panel, or a sub panel. Plus, if you do buy an EV, you'll be cursing the day you were born if you're stuck charging at 120V, and upgrading your 15 amp outlet to 20 amps will get you exactly squat because the bolt will only charge at 12 amps max anyways.

The good news is, and it's been all over this forum, is that the stock charger that comes with the car can run at 220V, so you can just change that outlet to a 6-15, use the existing conductors at 220V, and use a plug shape changer, that way you'll get much faster charging without having to drag in new wires. Higher voltage, but the current, and hence the required wire size is the same at 12 amps. But we're getting way ahead of the game here.

As for your family? I can't speak to your dynamics, but charging up your EV is about the same price as drinking a few of their beers. It's not like tanking up your Subaru or siphoning gas out of your cousin's truck in the middle of the night. Just about everybody we visit is OK with our mooching. We can spend more time hanging out and not leaving early to fast charging on the road.

And where on earth do you work that they wouldn't let you plug in with an extension cord to draw $0.75 worth of electricity during your shift?
regarding the panels, I did look into a subpanel. This would require a bit of labor to reconfigure things and is about $850 for that plus the new 6-20 circuit and outlet install. For the difference of a few hundred dollars more, I would just upgrade the whole panel and possibly upgrade from 100A to 150 or 200A service.

Last time I bought tires they cost about $150 per at Costco, and lasted about 4 years at the time I traded in, for what it’s worth.

I love the idea of helping the environment and saving money at the pump at the same time, but it seems to be a little bit ... too inconvenient. As I mentioned above its possible I may be a better candidate for a PHEV.

If Toyota can launch the RAV4 Prime in the low 30’s with a top trim in the low 40’s and have the full $7500 federal credit plus the state credit based off the electric range, I would have a hard time justifying anything else.

Part of the problem though is that gas engines are pretty efficient highway but not city for sure. So it would take years and possibly never reach cost parity.
 

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And where on earth do you work that they wouldn't let you plug in with an extension cord to draw $0.75 worth of electricity during your shift?
This really depends on company policy. Same with plugging in at someone else's house... not understanding EVs or physics in general, they'd assume a charge session will cause their power bill to go up $50.

As another posted "for the government", I've heard of that too. It is apparently considered theft if you plug in at a government office...
 

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Hi everyone!
Hi! Sounds like you’ve put a lot of thought into your next vehicle plans — congrats! We have a 2017 Bolt as our primary car with 43000 miles and we’ve used it for commuting, visiting family, and short and long road trips. I’m looking at 2022 as well for replacing our secondary car (a CR-V) with something similar in size and height (my wife prefers the higher driving position) but full electric, and I think there will be a few options by then.

For the general issues you raised about the Bolt:
  • The maintenance costs have been next to nil: tire rotation, one cabin filter replacement, wiper blades, windshield washer fluid. Two dealer visits under warranty for odd noises in the steering and suspension.
  • The cargo space is adequate for us, and deep for a hatchback; you could stack several long duffel bags of sports gear.
  • The back seat is fine for two adults and adequate for three; I think there are only anchors for two car seats, so if your children are 8 or under that three-child carpool might be a challenge.
  • There’s a lane departure warning on the Premier and it will nudge the steering wheel if you drift up to the lane line without signaling.
  • No adaptive cruise control, true; I drive a little slower on the highway for better range, and so I find that I would have less need of it.
Electric driving has been very cheap. I’d say the biggest shift of attitude I’ve had with the Bolt is finding ways to maximize the utility of the time that the car is stopped. If I have to stop the car anyway, I’d like to put electrons into it, and I don’t care how fast it is if it’ll be stopped long enough. Plus, little shifts in routine can give you that extra sense of security of a few more miles.

Any full electric will have the same basic charging options: DC, level 2 (208/240V), and level 1 (120V). I personally feel that the relative speeds of DC charging are oversold. I also don’t think you’ll be in the market for an electric car that has a range either less than 120 miles (a week of normal commuting or one round trip in the summer) or above 600 miles (one week of summer commuting). Given your scenarios, AC charging shouldn’t be a problem for you except during the summers at the shore. Working through the options:

- If they put in charging at work, use that. It’ll be cheaper than EVgo or other DC options, you don’t have to negotiate with family members, and it won’t take you any extra time. At 208V/30A you should take about 5 hours per day to hit full again.

- If there’s no charging at work, but you can negotiate with your family to put in a 240V socket of any kind, you’re set. You can get a portable charger and plug that in for the summer. If you wanted to compensate them for the power directly, you could keep a log of how much you used each session. My charger has a readout that’ll list the amount of power drawn per session, or you could get a separate plug-in meter for that. (I’m assuming they wouldn’t insist on utility-grade metering.)

- If there’s no charging at work, but you can negotiate with your family to plug in at 120V/12A, then you should be able to make one DC charging stop per week. You’re using, say, 30kWh for the round trip and charging back 15 kWh over 12-14 hours being parked. If you can find a grocery store near that EVgo charger, you could pick up groceries for the family every Tuesday or Wednesday night while you charge back up. It’ll charge back up to full over the weekend on 120V.

- If you can’t charge at either your workplace or the summer home, perhaps there’s an L2 charger somewhere in the community near your summer home or your job. We stayed in a tiny seashore town for our honeymoon, and the local library had a charger they were happy for us to use; I’d park it there overnight before days we planned to take a drive, and take a lovely half mile walk along a bayshore back to the rental. Since then, I‘ve bought one of those folding electric scooters for trips, so I can go drop off the car at a charger and come back to the motel or the family house or the restaurant.

More chargers are being installed all the time, so if something looks iffy now there’s a good chance some more options will open up by 2022.

Best of luck with whatever you go with, and have a great time doing it!
 

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Discussion Starter #30
Any full electric will have the same basic charging options: DC, level 2 (208/240V), and level 1 (120V). I personally feel that the relative speeds of DC charging are oversold. I also don’t think you’ll be in the market for an electric car that has a range either less than 120 miles (a week of normal commuting or one round trip in the summer) or above 600 miles (one week of summer commuting). Given your scenarios, AC charging shouldn’t be a problem for you except during the summers at the shore. Working through the options:
Agreed. I crossed off some of the shorter range EV's like the Mini Electric and Nissan Leaf as well. I mentioned in another post that an ideal range for me would be 500 miles - but that also factors in the idea of only charging to 80% to preserve battery life (I think that was formerly called Hilltop mode?) and never going under 20% state of charge. This protects the top and bottom buffers of the battery which is typically the range the lithium family of batteries likes to stay - basically as close to the 50% state of charge as possible. By doing this, you'd lose 100 miles off the top and bottom buffer, leaving you with a typical "useful" battery range of 300 miles.

Again, I said ideal for me meaning that it would be the most convenient. That does NOT mean I wouldn't be able to function with less, but I was hoping for 250 or more miles of range to protect for winter months. Interestingly enough, it appears that the heat pump system in the Tesla Model Y also doesn't impact winter range nearly as much as the resistive heating element types.

If they put in charging at work, use that. It’ll be cheaper than EVgo or other DC options, you don’t have to negotiate with family members, and it won’t take you any extra time. At 208V/30A you should take about 5 hours per day to hit full again.
And this would be the best option, I agree. Having 240 at my house has no impact on the back-and-forth legs to the shore and work, but something at work would be good. We were looking at something like you suggesting, a NEMA 14-30 outlet (240v at 30A which charges at 24A), as this provides 5.7 kW of energy per hour, and over an 8 hour shift, would charge about 46 kW of energy - which is about 180 miles assuming a 250 Watt per mile efficiency. We're also considering a 6-20 outlet (240v at 20A which charges at 16A) since that would also provide 122 miles of range over a shift - more than any of us are driving.

If there’s no charging at work, but you can negotiate with your family to put in a 240V socket of any kind, you’re set. You can get a portable charger and plug that in for the summer. If you wanted to compensate them for the power directly, you could keep a log of how much you used each session. My charger has a readout that’ll list the amount of power drawn per session, or you could get a separate plug-in meter for that. (I’m assuming they wouldn’t insist on utility-grade metering.)
I don't think it would be a negotiation, they wouldn't forbid me to do it, I would just not like to have to deal with it and any sidebar commentary. If I had to charge in order to get to a DCFC overnight, for example, I'd just plug in and unplug it in the morning. It's not about the money of the electricity, it's about the sidebar commentary and one-liner comments.

If there’s no charging at work, but you can negotiate with your family to plug in at 120V/12A, then you should be able to make one DC charging stop per week. You’re using, say, 30kWh for the round trip and charging back 15 kWh over 12-14 hours being parked. If you can find a grocery store near that EVgo charger, you could pick up groceries for the family every Tuesday or Wednesday night while you charge back up. It’ll charge back up to full over the weekend on 120V.
This is something in the back of my mind for a home solution instead of having to pay to upgrade my home's panel and wiring to 240V. I have the access to easily use an EA station as needed to top off. And it's close enough that I can always go plug in and walk home, depending on how long the EA session is for.

If you can’t charge at either your workplace or the summer home, perhaps there’s an L2 charger somewhere in the community near your summer home or your job. We stayed in a tiny seashore town for our honeymoon, and the local library had a charger they were happy for us to use; I’d park it there overnight before days we planned to take a drive, and take a lovely half mile walk along a bayshore back to the rental. Since then, I‘ve bought one of those folding electric scooters for trips, so I can go drop off the car at a charger and come back to the motel or the family house or the restaurant.
Oddly enough, around here, there aren't any free chargers. There's one a few towns over that is at a restaurant that you can use while you have dinner there, but it's a Tesla destination charger (with a J1772 adapter according to PlugShare) and that doesn't do that much juice like a DCFC does.

I believe the Chevy dealer(s) near me where I'd probably shop have CCS chargers, but the Plugshare reviews suggest they're not the best.

I do have L2 charging options up here, but they're all paid is what I'm getting at - which is fine and reasonable. Even the local municipalities all have paid sessions, most of them are Chargepoints, where it's 1.50 per half hour or something like that but don't provide a ton of power.

I'm hoping it continues to expand. Unfortunately I think that the current price of gas (super cheap, $1.699 per gallon) is not helping the situation as I believe I'm pretty close to equal cost between going 40 miles on a gallon of fuel vs. going 40 miles on electricity...

40 miles @ 250 Watts per mile = 10 kWh @ 0.17 c per kWh = $1.70 + 20% efficiency losses = $2.04
40 miles @ 35 mpg @ $1.69 per gallon = $1.93
40 miles @ 30 mpg @ $1.69 per gallon = $2.25

And, keep in mind my Forester is a less expensive vehicle compared to the Bolt (not including maintenance charges and things like that)

I'm not saying the Forester is better, I'm just making my case that cheap gas is not helping and price/money is not the be-all-end-all of EV perks. Saving cash is great, but not having to stop for 30 minutes driving "regularly" is also great.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
As another posted "for the government", I've heard of that too. It is apparently considered theft if you plug in at a government office...
We'd formerly had people across the country plugging in where they had the capability to do so, and people driving gas-powered cars filed a grievance because they wanted the government to provide them with gasoline/diesel for their personal vehicles. The result is cease and desist all across the board.

This is the kind of crazy we have to deal with. Godspeed.

(They've since made changes to policy to allow people to charge where available so long as they pay for the electricity. From my understanding, the organization itself will pay for the chargers, maintenance, and infrastructure as a perk of the building but employees are responsible for their own power consumption. I have no problem with this plan, it's fair.)
 

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We'd formerly had people across the country plugging in where they had the capability to do so, and people driving gas-powered cars filed a grievance because they wanted the government to provide them with gasoline/diesel for their personal vehicles. The result is cease and desist all across the board.

This is the kind of crazy we have to deal with. Godspeed.

(They've since made changes to policy to allow people to charge where available so long as they pay for the electricity. From my understanding, the organization itself will pay for the chargers, maintenance, and infrastructure as a perk of the building but employees are responsible for their own power consumption. I have no problem with this plan, it's fair.)
Yeah, I have a friend who works at NASA Ames Research Center (Moffitt field, SF Bay Area, Calif). They went through the same B.S. experience (not him - he doesn't have an electric).

NASA's solution here (which I loved) : they installed eight pay 50 kW / 125A DCFCs in the parking lot outside the security gate, also making it available to the general public. It was the first non-Tesla "mega-site" (more than 4 units) that I know of in the U.S. It is at the junction of 2 important freeways, and 45-120 seconds access off either one (depending on whether you get a green light or not). Beautiful solution (and not one that I would expect of a govt installation). Of course, Ames is where NASA's atmosphere research unit is located, so ...

I have never, ever, ever, in two years, seen fewer than two out of the eight DCFC units available - including during rush hour.
 

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Back to the original post : the options and trade-offs seem to be fairly well addressed already.

And remember : "You have a year, and who knows what might happen in that time {...} perhaps the horse will learn to sing" . (Very, very old story / joke)

12-18 months from now, the landscape could be very different. There might be 240V EV charging available at work (which would completely solve your summer issue - 5 hours of charging would give you round-trip mileage). There might be more public chargers available near the summer shore house. There might be more DCFC chargers installed along the route.

For your regular (non-summer house) commute, home charging at even 120V/8 amps will be fine. Those few times when you are a little low, you already have a DCFC nearby to "top up". The only real issue is the summer commute it seems, and nobody knows what facilities will be available 18 months from now. I'd politely keep the pressure up for getting EV charging installed at work. Leave notes on the windshields of EVs parked in the work parking lot, asking them if they want to talk about their EV because you are thinking about getting one ... then during the conversation, push the idea of 240V charging at work (pay, of course). 10 people asking (or 20, or 30) will have more effect than one or two.

And yes, if the charging situation isn't any better in 18 months, you might want to get a PHEV. A vehicle with (say) 30 miles of electric range would mean you would generally be driving electric, and be worry-free for those summer commutes. There are already more choices of models / types / sizes in the PHEV market than in the BEV side of things - there will definitely be different (and more) EV models available in 2022 (both BEV and PHEV).

If the charging situation IS better in 2022, there also should be a LOT of used BEVs on the market. Electric engines just don't deteriorate as quickly at IC : they are far simpler. Currently, 3-year-old Bolts with 45-55k miles are selling for ~ $20K (near me). I can buy a new one for around $27-28k. I'd buy new today if I didn't already have an EV. In 2 years, if the used was 50% less than new I would consider buying used and maybe switch to a newer car with better tech or faster charging in 4 or 5 years (and give the old one to one of my kids). The price difference would easily pay for an update to my electrical panel and wiring ...
 

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Keep in mind that charging at any DCFC is going to be way more expensive than charging at home. With today’s gas prices, gas will be cheaper by a fair margin.
 

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As another posted "for the government", I've heard of that too. It is apparently considered theft if you plug in at a government office...
Yep, at JPL they came up will a club sort of entity for the EV charging. You'd assume, but no. Makes me wonder how much bureaucrats are crippling our space program

:unsure:
 

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Hi everyone! Just to be up front, I've posted a similar thread in other forums of vehicles I'm interested in but I'm looking for as much information as I possibly can.

I'm leasing a 2019 Subaru Forester presently. My lease ends mid-January of 2022, which means I have anywhere from 12 to 18 months left on the lease. The reason this is 12 to 18 is because if I return the lease anytime after June of 2021, I can have the early lease end fees waived - as long as I leased or purchased another Subaru. Some catch, right? Anyway, I generally like to start my research around 12 months out, which means I can place a "factory order" or "custom order" as needed to get exactly what I want.

Commute - I live in a single-family home, so I would plan to charge in my driveway via my garage on 120V 15A (aka 5-15) outlet. This may have the means to be upgraded to a 20A 120V outlet, aka 5-20. I'm willing to spend on a 240V30A type of outlet and circuit in the future if the 120 is not sufficient but this will absolutely require panel upgrades (breaker box is completely filled up and already has been tandemed and combined as much as possible)...

My work commute is about 10 miles each way, 5 days a week in non-pandemic conditions. This commute is about 1-2 miles of Suburban driving to a 55mph highway, about 4 miles of that highway, and then another 4 miles of very urban city driving. Traffic is typically bad on one of the two ways since I work either very early or very late, so I only hit the traffic during the normal times coming or going. There are more highway routes I could take that are about 20 miles each way but end up taking around the same 25-30 minutes.

I can't charge at work, but they are considering it for the future. I'd have to pay for my own electricity. There is a nearby EVGo and Tesla Supercharger at a mall that is about 2-3 miles away from work that I could run to on a lunch break and charge if I was in a pinch.

Passengers - Typically I will have my two kids in the back either going or from school which is a short 5 minute ride, and then depending on work I'll have them in the back going to some type of sports practice. Possibly another kid if I have to help carpool. I don't need a ton of cargo room, but I do coach baseball and soccer so I need the cargo area large enough to be able to hold the gear.

Other cars - My wife drives a three row SUV that we use for vacations. We don't need this car to be a vacation car.

Other things to consider - In the summer months we tend to stay with family for a majority of it. I'll be commuting 60 miles each way when this happens. While I could charge at the destination, I'd prefer not to since I don't want to make things awkward and seem like I'm mooching (it's not my house). There is an EVGo charger about half way between work and this summer shore house that I could use regularly. How long would it take? Do I charge to, say, 80% and then leave?

So, I have concerns about charging when on the road specifically the DC charging. I know the Teslas are super, super fast... I don't want to have to be on the road at 12 AM coming home from work on a 60 minute drive and have to stop for 45 more minutes regularly.

Other cars/options I'm looking at:

1. Just buy out the Forester for around $19,000 plus taxes.
2. Consider a Toyota Venza mild-hybrid that launches this year.
3. Consider a Subaru Outback or new Subaru Forester for the low $30,000's plus taxes.
4. Consider a Toyota RAV4 Prime PHEV to take advantage of electricity's low cost and do virtually all daily driving (non-summer) with it.
5. Consider a full EV like the Bolt and deal with the infrequent need to DCFC
6. Consider a moonshot EV like the Tesla Model Y and get more range (300+ miles) and faster DCFC as needed.

Lack of adaptive cruise and lane centering functions (SuperCruise) is a little concerning. I have Adaptive in my Forester now, but not active lane centering.

Cost of PHEV seems high, because I still have to do ICE-related maintenance on time.

Thanks for your input.
I would go with the Bolt EUV. It's supposed to come with supercruise option and faster DC fast charging. It's supposed to be much more improved than the bolt. But if you can afford the Tesla I would go with a Tesla model y.
 

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Yes the RAV will be a serious contender as well because of that. I think it will all depend on price. Again I am leasing so I can’t really make a decision until next summer one way or the other because the difference in trade in value with what I owe on the lease is considerable.

The PHEV is really the best of both worlds without the inconvenience of charging.

I love the idea of helping the environment and saving money at the pump at the same time, but it seems to be a little bit ... too inconvenient. As I mentioned above its possible I may be a better candidate for a PHEV.

If Toyota can launch the RAV4 Prime in the low 30’s with a top trim in the low 40’s and have the full $7500 federal credit plus the state credit based off the electric range, I would have a hard time justifying anything else.

Part of the problem though is that gas engines are pretty efficient highway but not city for sure. So it would take years and possibly never reach cost parity.
Well, pricing is out for the RAV4 Prime!

 
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