After driving a full electric powered vehicle for only 6 months and 4000 miles I am still acquiring knowledge.
But some things I have learned.
- Reliable… No breakdowns except for in December when the charger quit and lost ability to drive vehicle for over a week. I now have 2 chargers see http://saturn.lynnautorepair.com/node/332 and http://saturn.lynnautorepair.com/node/235
- Very Little Maintenance. Filled batteries 2 twice so far, tightened all bolts on motor mounts, checked tire pressures a couple times, added washer fluild and washed vehicle once.
- Distance… is 30 miles safely but have done 36.
- Use all the gauges you can…. to keep away potential problems. tachometer, speedometer, ampmeter, voltmeter and wish i had battery monitor gauges
- Drive in all conditions…. Can drive in the cold, heavy pouring rain and snow. BTW, keep a good splash shield under the motor.
- Efficiency… 4.5 cents a mile average
- Acceleration, Power… Plenty, but try not to use it. Think of it as like driving an ICE with a gallon or 2 of gasoline and it takes 4 hours to refill. So drive conservatively and go farther on a gallon or Kilowatt Hour.
Friends ask me what is next?
- Add an electric garage door opener (already done ✔). I never used the home garage for keeping a vehicle inside but since the EV joined the family and the charger should be kept out of the rain and our new dog loves to chew on electric cords the door opener helps alot. Nice in bad weather.
- Solar Panels… can I generate most or all the energy needed to charge the EV? Visited a Local Winery today that generates ALL its energy from solar.
- Wind Generator …. usually generates more energy at night when the solar will not.
- Electric Race Car! I have drag raced on and off for years. Someone asked me last year if I was still racing? I explained I was using my racing funds to build an EV. Now this year when asked the same question I answered, I may get back into racing but with an electric powered vehicle. Maybe in 2010 or 2011.
- Studying FUEL CELLS, hydrogen, methanol DMFC and ethanol. Will probably buy a test educational unit this year and am keeping up with people using them to power EVs.