Dracula
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Aug 18, 2015 3:51 pm

Re: First Winter Drive

Fri Dec 09, 2016 4:07 pm

According to your plan, the temperature inside your car needs to stabilize at 60 deg F, with the heat losses to the exterior being made up partly by the propane heater, and partly by the resistive heater. Why not stabilize the car temperature at 70 deg F, so you can be comfortable?

Regarde fogging of the windows, unless the glass gets warm, or the humidity inside the car is low, you may not be able to prevent it. You may want to try to crack open one of the rear windows, so the humidity, and hopefully the CO, can escape.

oilerlord
Posts: 104
Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2016 9:47 pm

Re: First Winter Drive

Fri Dec 09, 2016 8:46 pm

Well, I have my answer. It doesn't matter if the temperature is set at 60F or 72 - running the cabin heater takes the same amount of energy.

Today it was -3F outside. I ran the propane heater, cabin temperature set at 60F with fan running at 50% to keep windows from fogging:

52.18 miles (95% highway), 23.18 kWh consumed - 2.19 miles per kWh. Essentially same efficiency as my first trip (2.13 miles per kWh) using the car's own heater set at 72F - and being comfortable without windows fogging and no risk of CO poisoning. I'm going to return the propane heater. At the very least, I hope this test has helped anyone that considered trying this. Really, it isn't worth the trouble.

Clearly the main traction battery heater and/or temperature of the battery itself has a lot more to do with the car's range than running the car's heater does. To that point, the car's cabin heater is very good, even in extreme cold temperatures.

I'm going to go the diesel heater route. If I can keep the battery warm, I'll be able to run the cabin heater without too much of a range penalty. I'm guessing that once installed, I may be able to get efficiency back to ~3.5 miles per kWh while running the heater.

To be continued.

JeffRay
Posts: 805
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:12 am

Re: First Winter Drive

Wed Dec 14, 2016 7:22 am

First try with portable auto battery and small electric heater did not work. Took everything home to charge up and test on dining table. I have a feeling that the small electric heater sucks too many AMPs vs what the battery can provide. Or maybe it needed a full charge.
Jeff in NYC
MB '17 B250e; MB '06 E500W; MB '81 380SL

JeffRay
Posts: 805
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:12 am

Re: First Winter Drive

Fri Dec 16, 2016 7:39 am

OK, we had our first cold snap in NY with temperatures in the teens. Given the time of year, i.e. yearenditis, I drove my wife's wagon the last couple of days as I wanted to preserve the remaining battery for the 22 mile roundtrip Saturday to my mechanic. Then off to plug in over the weekend to get back to 100% for next week. I could have plugged into a commercial charger but that would have cost money and been a hassle. Such is life with a limited range electric and no home garage to plug in and only a 110 outlet at work. I think I am gonna press the landlord to upgrade the outlet to a 220 since they charge me $25 per month for the privilege of using it.

Happy holidays all.
Jeff in NYC
MB '17 B250e; MB '06 E500W; MB '81 380SL

oilerlord
Posts: 104
Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2016 9:47 pm

Re: Range in Extreme Cold

Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:23 am

It's interesting coming back to this a year later.

It was -19F on Friday. Starting from my heated garage, and a full charge, I did a round trip to see a client yesterday. 22 miles each way / 44 miles total. Pulling into my garage, the car indicated 20% charge remaining. I had the seat heater on the entire time, but was making conservative use of the heater; had it set at 72F but had it on ~ 50% of the time, mostly to keep the windows clear. It was a freeway drive at between 55-60 mph. Based on those conditions, I'm pegging total range at about 53 miles. As a comparison, at anything above 60F, I can break 100 miles without much effort. These truly are California cars.

Had to see the same client again yesterday, but this time I took my wife's X3. It felt so luxurious being warm on the drive. Her car has a steering wheel heater too, that would be a nice touch in our B's. Fortunately, this cold snap is breaking this week with temperatures getting up into the mid 30's.

GlennD
Posts: 449
Joined: Mon Jul 21, 2014 5:26 pm

Re: First Winter Drive

Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:50 am

Boy it sure has been cold here. When I got up the temperature was 45 degrees F.
2014 Cirrus White B Class (Totaled).
2016 Urano Gray eGolf.
I loved the VW but it was too hard to get into for my aged body.
I am back to another 2017 Cirrus White B250e.
Blind Spot Assist, Performance 3 and Sahara Beige interier.

JeffRay
Posts: 805
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:12 am

Re: First Winter Drive

Fri Dec 21, 2018 8:05 am

With overnight temperatures in the 30s and my B250e parked outside, range has predictably dropped to 50ish miles. Even with my short daily commute to work, it still means charging 2-3 times a week lately when the gauge has dropped below 50%. Sort of a hassle so I have been using our gas wagon when inconvenient to head to a charging station (free or not free). Had to gas up today and for yucks looked at the wagon's GOM which read 425 miles, then quickly dropped to 250 miles once I started driving in urban traffic where it gets 12 miles per gallon.

I guess I rationalize by saying the gas vehicles need to be run every once in a while to stay in shape. But really, my tolerance for heading to a charging station is once a week. Fine in warm weather but not in the winter. Plus the torque on the B250e can cause wheels to spin off the mark when there is stuff on the ground.
Jeff in NYC
MB '17 B250e; MB '06 E500W; MB '81 380SL

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