hfeb
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:00 am

How to get longer range in the winter

Sun Sep 08, 2019 12:03 pm

I have been bothered by the range lost in cold weather. I regulary make a trip that is 150 km and in the summer it only uses ca. 80% of the battery. In the winter, I always have to use Range+ and when the temperature comes down to zero, I will have stop for a 30m charge, ie. the trip is using 130-140% of the "normal" batterycapacity.

I tried some experimenting, and found out, as some of you also have, that the heater is using a lot of power. If I ran the trip without the heater on, it was possible to do the whole trip with Range+, that means that the heater is using almost 30% of the battery capacity, and that is a to much.

After som very cold trips, and a lot of hot tea, I decided to fix the problem myself. The solution was simple, I went to the local plumber shop and bougt three lengts of pipe insulation, I think it was 12mm, 24mm and 32mm. It was last summer, so I can't remember it exactly, but you can easily measure it on the pipes and hoses. Then I just insulated the hoses and zip-tied. You can feel which ones to insulate by feeling if they are warm after a short trip with the heater on.

The result is fantastic. I am now able to make the trip in the winter in one go, and still have a decent heat in the car. It's not like Ibiza heat, but I makes it comfortable to drive in normal winter clothes. The trips now uses ca. 110% of capacity with zero degrees C and even less at 8C that most winter days are here.

I have some pictures to show the end result. Be sure to get the 2 hoses furthest back in the middle properly insulated the whole way back. I did it by putting the insulation on the hose, and sliding it on the hos until it stuck. You could probably get under the car and do it better, but I don't have a lift.

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Last edited by hfeb on Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

JeffRay
Posts: 1104
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:12 am

Re: How to get longer range in the winter

Sun Sep 08, 2019 3:34 pm

HFeb,

Welcome. Where have you been hibernating all this time. This is an interesting post as I lose about a third of my range in the winter. No question the heater is the main culprit so this will help. The other is a cold battery which my only solution is to park it in a paid garage overnight vs. on the street when it is really bad. Any ideas on this would be helpful.
Jeff in NYC
MB '06 E500W; MB '81 380SL
Retired: MB '17 B250e; MB '14 Be

rrattie
Posts: 76
Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2018 7:19 pm

Re: How to get longer range in the winter

Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:03 pm

This is an awesome "hack" to getting better winter range. I'll definitely be looking into this as I just started a new job that would definitely tax the range on the B in colder months.
--------------------
2014 South Seas Blue Metallic B-Class 250 ED

mr250e
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Apr 02, 2017 10:30 am

Re: How to get longer range in the winter

Sun Sep 29, 2019 5:48 pm

Thanks so much for this awesome work-around. I've been wearing my warmest Canada Goose parka and mittens, so this will be a great improvement during cold weather driving.

If anyone has the U.S. diameter and length measurements, I will be looking to purchase the pipe insulation and ties right away!

Jeffray, years ago I owned a Subaru with a cold-weather package that included a heater for the battery. I never used it, but maybe you could find something like that that you could use outside while your B is parked and plugged in overnight.
'15 MB B-Class (Red/Gray)
'12 MB C-Class 300 Sport 4Matic (Palladium Silver/Gray)

JeffRay
Posts: 1104
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:12 am

Re: How to get longer range in the winter

Mon Sep 30, 2019 7:18 am

Keep the great ideas coming. Am going to insulate the hoses and look online for portable unit to keep the battery warm overnight.
Jeff in NYC
MB '06 E500W; MB '81 380SL
Retired: MB '17 B250e; MB '14 Be

Mzteaze
Posts: 28
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2019 1:33 pm

Re: How to get longer range in the winter

Sun Oct 06, 2019 2:05 pm

This is a GREAT idea. Thanks for sharing.

FordAnglia
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2019 7:50 pm

Re: How to get longer range in the winter

Mon Oct 07, 2019 10:43 am

mr250e wrote:
Sun Sep 29, 2019 5:48 pm
Jeffray, years ago I owned a Subaru with a cold-weather package that included a heater for the battery. I never used it, but maybe you could find something like that that you could use outside while your B is parked and plugged in overnight.
I think that heater was for the lead-acid battery in the Subaru. The High-Voltage battery in an EV has to be warmed up if the outside temp is too low (zero degC)

This is done by passing heated coolant through the High-voltage battery, presumably that heating energy comes from the lead-acid battery. In warm weather, and due to self-heating of the High-voltage battery under electrical load, the same coolant is used to remove heat from the High-voltage battery. Same for the electric motor and inverter in an EV, which requires coolant flow for cooling. In an ICE vehicle there is an abundance of waste heat!

Years ago, while living in Rockford, Illinois, I had a "summer car" and a "winter 4x4" which was outside (the single stall garage being used for the summer car)

I had an engine block heater installed by the dealer (it was a factory option that was not on this used vehicle) Plugging it in to a regular 120V outlet at night enabled the engine to catch on the first start, and the defroster to work almost immediately.

It would be possible to warm the High-voltage battery coolant with a similar device, or rig the existing electric coolant heater to do the same job on an EV. The main advantage would be to save the High-voltage battery energy for traction, and not waste it on auxiliary heating. High-voltage battery energy would still be used to heat the seats and run the cabin heater while driving, however.

Peter,
2017 B250e Jupiter Red

arthurmartineau
Posts: 22
Joined: Sat Apr 13, 2019 9:53 pm

Re: How to get longer range in the winter

Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:27 pm

I have my home charger set to start charging so that the battery will be full right before it's time to leave in the morning. I haven't analyzed the improvement but it appears to make a difference in heating the battery. I also always preheat the car before I leave.

Marcin
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Oct 26, 2019 7:00 am

Re: How to get longer range in the winter

Sat Oct 26, 2019 7:11 am

Thanks guys for idea.
I've done insulation like this.
Did I miss something?

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipM ... VDcWZvcXR3


Regrards,

Marcin
Poland

cblankespoor
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Apr 07, 2018 4:30 pm

Re: How to get longer range in the winter

Sat Oct 26, 2019 2:57 pm

Hi Marcin,

Very impressive! What insulating material, the red stuff in your photos, did you use?

Thanks in advance.

Curt
Michiganer
2014 B250e, Cirrus White
2006 Toyota Prius

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