#1 Nov. 22, 2015 17:25:14

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Free Vehicle Recharging Points.

Rick M
Hi Yotty, Just reading up on this subjectRe using standard 13A domestic power socket to recharge EV, the Go Ultra Low website warns that most of these are unsuitable because the circuits are not intended to carry that much power. The site is a joint production of the government and Society of Motor Manufacturers Traders (SMMT) but this does ring true to me because heavy power using appliances (such as my electric hob oven) do have dedicated circuits with noticeably thicker electric cables. www.goultralow.com

The standard EV low speed charger draws just 10 Amps (the Mitsubishi Outlander can only charge at this rate no matter what its connected to) which is easily supplied through a standard (properly wired )13 Amp socket circuit. No need for any dedicated EV charging points in your home (the OEV grant no longer caters for free installations anyway). Even at this low charging rate the Outlander fully charges in less than 6 hrs.

Edited vince31 (Nov. 22, 2015 17:25:42)


#2 Dec. 2, 2016 21:42:10

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Free Vehicle Recharging Points.

I've been charging my secondhand (3-yr old) Nissan Leaf for the last 7 months from a standard-wired 13A socket without a problem. A few months prior to this I had a new consumer unit fitted (when replacing our cooker with a fancy range cooker/induction hob) and all the circuits tested, which is recommended before charging an EV.
No signs of even the slightest warmth from socket, plug or wiring during charging.

I try to charge when the sun is shining when possible (which is why I don't have a high-power charger - this would overwhelm the output of the solar panels by a large margin) but must admit, practically this is only about a quarter of charges during the winter.


#3 Dec. 3, 2016 10:09:32

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Free Vehicle Recharging Points.

Shouldn't maintenance costs be less for EVs with no gear box, less moving parts and less complex machinery to go wrong generally, or is anyone aware of some report to the contrary for us to read?…. Nor have I looked into battery longevity, beyond a 100,000 miles “thus far” experience that I've now read on http://experiencenissanleaf.co.uk … As regards battery performance degradation, I understand that LEAF owners warranty in any case nowadays retrospectively guarantees the car battery to at least 9 out of 12 bars of its capacity (approximately 70 per cent) after 5 years or 100,000 kilometres, whichever comes first… Personally I'll have to wait until secondhand prices are down to my level though.P.S. How many people really do clock over 100 miles to get to work regularly anyway?

Hi Roger, forgive this late reply to your post.
I've done the ‘wait till they are affordable’ thing and bought a 3-yr-old Nissan Leaf in April. Love it.

Maintenance costs are definitely less (though haven't done a service yet). There so little to go wrong, apart from the routine brakes, tyres, wipers. Not even an exhaust!
You're right about Nissan's battery warranty. And exaggerated fears about battery degradation have been proved wrong - unless you live in Nevada - the desert state. It seems the main enemy of Li-ion batteries is heat, though I guess it's still worth treating them with care.
It's not the most suitable car if you do a regular very-long commute at high motorway speeds but I do a 60-mile round trip commute which is well within battery range and charging stations are becoming more common month by month.
In the summer we had a holiday trip from south Northumberland to Islay (Inner Hebridean Island) with no worries. You have to plan your journeys admittedly and can't be as spontaneous as with an I.C.E. car but there are online maps/ smartphone apps (e.g. Zap-Map) that list all the networks chargers and give live indication whether the charging points are in use/ are in working order. Also the car itself can display charger locations and direct you to the nearest one of your choice.
Motorways are very well covered by the Ecotricity Highway network of chargers. They are free to Ecotricity domestic customers - like us - (up to 52 charges per year). Good Energy (another renewable electricity supplier) also offer a discount to EV owners.
Most chargers in Northumberland (and some other counties) are free and others are very low cost. However I guess this won't last forever.

Apart from all this it is a great car to drive: quiet, effortless, very nippy with excellent stable handling with its low centre of gravity. Feels like a sports car (without the noise). I'm very happy that I'm doing less damage to the environment, although I remind myself that the real heroes of today are walkers, cyclists and users of public transport. Unfortunately none of these are practical for my commute.


#4 Jan. 6, 2017 16:48:58

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Free Vehicle Recharging Points.

I enter below a leaflet I carry in my Leaf. I would add that I have a 12 panel 2.2 kw PV array, which has produced an average of 2262 kw per year, over the past 6 years. Obviously that brings the cost down, but I have not taken that into account below. We do about 12000 miles per year. Less mileage = less leasing costs.
EV versus ICE
We run a Nissan Leaf.
Running an EV is different. “Range anxiety” is often quoted. I have to say that after a couple of weeks getting used to it, it was no longer a problem, just something to be aware of. The acceleration is impressive and the top speed is quite adequate for a family car. (quoted 97). There is no vibration and it is very quiet. You would normally charge it at home through a dedicated wall mounted charger. The Leaf is quite a large 5 door hatchback and feels very solid. We have just done 2 years with a Leaf and have just taken delivery of our new extended range one. Depending on your journey patterns, we can highly recommend an EV.
In order to compare the cost of running a leased electric car with buying or leasing a conventional petrol one, I have had to make some assumptions.
1. The new cost is broadly equivalent, i.e. £23-24,000
2. The specification is broadly the same (except for the engine!)
3. The annual mileage is the same.
4. The period of comparison is 3 years.

So, the cost of buying and running a new petrol engined car over its first 3 years……
Cost of fuel = 3 x 12000 (miles p.a. which is what we do)=36000
@ 40 miles per gallon = 900 gallons OR
@ 8.8 miles per litre = 4091 litres
x £1.10 (per litre) = £4,500
Depreciation = 60%(?) over three years = £15,000
So, total cost over three years of purchased petrol car = £4500 + £15000 = £19500
Divide 19500 by 36000 = 54.2 pence per mile. (I have not taken into account insurance, which is comparable, but individual. Or road tax
which is variable, (but zero for the EV,) or any finance costs)
The costs of leasing are so variable that you must enquire for yourself, and compare specifications..
Given the rate of technology change, leasing rather than buying an EV is the sensible way to go, and the cost depends on the car. The new Nissan Leaf with a range of about 130 practical miles per charge costs £279 per month on a 3 year lease, at which point you can hand it back and start again.
Cost of lease over three years = £10,044 divided by 36000 miles = 27.9p per mile
Cost of electricity – the car does about 4.5 miles per kw, and a kw should cost you about
10p per kw = 2.2p per mile. Therefore the cost is about 30p per mile

The lower spec doing 80-90 miles per charge costs about £250 a month x 36 = £9000 divided by 36000 = 25p per mile plus electricity = 27.2p per mile. Servicing was £99 after 12 months.

The Zoe has a little less range than the lower spec Leaf, and is smaller, and I was quoted about £205 to lease it over three years. This means it would cost about 23p per mile to run.

My figures for the cost of leasing are for me, and may be different for you, and are for no payment up front.
Obviously you must do your own research and insert your own figures. We've had the Leaf for 2 years. We have oil heating,and the average cost of power (oil + elect - FIT ,inc Leaf) per year has been just less than £100. I'm not complaining.

Edited khris210 (Jan. 6, 2017 16:52:35)


#5 Jan. 9, 2017 09:47:15

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Free Vehicle Recharging Points.

Great post, very insightful. Good to read about practical user experience running an electric car. Thanks!


#6 Feb. 18, 2017 11:46:24

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Free Vehicle Recharging Points.

A traditional ICE car with even remotely comparable quietness and/or torque costs a fortune, doesn't it, khris219?

Certainly in the congested South East, where no-one can go far on a regular basis anyway, it's difficult to understand why anyone would choose last millenium's inefficient, smelly, noisy old technology, not to mention the running costs.

We hired a Nissan Leaf for a week. I found the telematics particularly useful, for example the route map showing recharging points together with the battery display of ‘remaining miles’. It certainly makes an ICE car's fuel gauge, which still leaves you guessing when you'll run out of fuel, seem downright primitive. In hindsight I'm not surprised if ICE drivers with their vehicles get ‘range anxiety’ when stuck in a barely-moving traffic jam. In addition, I didn't get so tired due to it's quietness, and in fact I could properly listen to my music just as I would at home.

In the Good Lady's worktime lunchbreaks with it, she took out work colleagues for a spin (with ‘eco mode’ off, I hasten to add). Apparently their reactions were uniformly; (a) ‘isn’t it quiet?', (b) what acceleration!, © it's like being in an aircraft (referring to the sound on setting off and stopping).

I'm not surprised that the cost/mile of a typical purchased ICE car is significantly higher than even a leased Leaf. But surely the genuine like-for-like comparison - and the real killer - is the comparison with a purchased one. With a £6-7k budget, we're looking for a 2013 vintage.

Economy 10 tariff provides 6.9p/kWh off-peak import between 12am-5am, 1pm-4pm and 8pm-10pm; http://www.pvoutput.org/aggregate.jsp?id=21047&sid=18934&v=2&t=m on approx. 63% off-peak usage, 22% solar usage, and 15% peak-rate usage.
1,900kWh annually is exported, mostly in summer, on approx. 3,200kWh generation. Approx. 4,500kWh/year is imported, mostly for (a) winter and springtime off-peak Storage Heaters, and (b) off-peak hot water Immersion heating (which is “dumb”, i.e. not linked to the solar PV).
PV array is split East-West. Income is from Phase II 21p/kWh Feed-in-Tariff plus smart metered 3.2p/kWh Export Tariff.

Edited rogerhoward (Feb. 18, 2017 12:34:21)


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