Charging Stations-ALERT!!

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An electric vehicle charging station has recently been activated at 14th and "U" street, in northwest Washington, D.C. I have been told that the MINIMUM monetary charge to use this station is $3.00 ! If such is the case, it would mean that it is cheaper to drive my Ford Van, than charge my VECTRIX scooter! $3.00 worth of gasoline in the van is good for 22 miles, but a one hour charge is only good for 10 to 15 miles on the scooter! I see rates such as this, as being similar to a gasoline station that charges a minimum of $75.00, even if you only can use 3 gallons of gasoline, which would make fueling motorcycles impractical. This failure to economically/practically accomodate the smaller electric vehicles is something that I feared would happen, and it seems those fears ARE justified! I feel that, ESPECIALLY in urban areas, consideration should be made for "class one" (120 volt, 15 ampere)charging facilities to be used by light electric vehicles, such as bicycles, scooters, and motorcycles, as these vehicles cannot normally go very far on a charge, due to limited space for batteries, but these vehicles are often ideal for travel in such areas, if charging is available on reasonable terms. If electric vehicles are ever going to be accepted, charging on reasonable terms for ALL must be available!--Bob Curry, Adelphi, Maryland U.S.A.

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robert93's picture
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Re: Charging Stations-ALERT!!

Wow! What a RACKET!!! Here's a novel concept..... How about a "juice card" credit card issued by your power company, allowing you to swipe at the charge station to just bill to your power bill at current billing cycle Kw/hr. rate. That way it goes straight to your power bill, and only the juice you use. ( I know, that means no surcharge to pay for the charge station ) Gotta be a better way than $3 minimum, lol.

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Re: Charging Stations-ALERT!!

$3 to charge? Get used to it. This whole, shall I say 'Balsamic' fantasy of the free ride in the electric will have to be awakened from someday.

So this guy I know lives in the People's Republic of Santa Monica. (PRSM) And he sees the free charging stations in the park and fantasizes about his 40+ mile commute to work. A new Nissan Leaf, no longer having to pay $300/month for gas. . . .

So there's no charger by his work. (Which I'm sure is slighty farther from the PRSM than the range of a leaf.) Since he lives in an apartment his only charging option would be the public chargers, where he can't leave his car parked overnight. Not that it matters, he'd never get it home from work anyway.

And since a $35k before fees (Probably a $39k transaction) Leaf would get him a car payment in excess of $700, the idea of paying for it with the money he saved on gas isn't panning out. The electric car, what an expensive luxury.

I guess a Leaf would use $1.20 in electricity, so there's a net $1.80 at least on every transaction. I know what business I'd get into, IF there were going to be lots and lots of electric cars.

But I'm tellin' ya, there's not gonna be a lot. So far the only truly practical consumer car (The Tesla is NOT for the general public) is the Chevy Volt, the car you can just keep driving. My thought is that there'll be a lot of people not bothering to charge it all the time, it'll be using more gas than necessary.

Charging alone is an issue that is guaranteed to bar the way of electric vehicle growth. I'm sure that even in the PRSM you'll be having to pay $3 to charge your electric sometime soon.

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Re: Charging Stations-ALERT!!

marylandbob wrote:

An electric vehicle charging station has recently been activated at 14th and "U" street, in northwest Washington, D.C. I have been told that the MINIMUM monetary charge to use this station is $3.00 !

Are the car spaces that surround the Electric Charge space metered?
ie Does it cost to park your car on the street in any other spot?

If thats the Minimum whats the maximum?
Is it time based or KWh based or both?
It costs more than $3 to park
So if you park your Motorbike or scooter on the pedestrian strip can you plug it in?

They need to offer a second socket for Two Wheelers.
I understand your frustration.
14th and U Gmaps
7C

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Re: Charging Stations-ALERT!!

Bob -

I think what you're seeing here is a system put in place with four wheelers in mind. It seems to be standard operating procedure for government (local or federal) to think only of cars. Take the tax credit as an example. When it first came out it was for cars only. It got changed to include motorcycles when there was lobbying. Note that it changed not when motorcyclists lobbied but when companies with the financial capability to lobby did so. That was one thing Vectrix was good at. Now they're gone who will take their place? Not CuMoCo - we don't have deep enough pockets! Maybe Brammo? Maybe Zero?

Given that they were probably only thinking about cars and given 7C's observation about parking revenue then the decision seems to make some more "sense" to those who implemented it. Of course it doesn't really make sense because maybe they didn't do enough fact finding first. Or maybe it's all simply a PR stunt?

However, I choose to be optimistic. I think that these are the early missteps for a new fueling model and that things will change for the better as things mature.

Dauntless - see this thread: http://visforvoltage.org/forum/10083-tired-old-anti-ev-arguments and quit with the mildly insulting "communism" / "socialism" rhetoric.

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Re: Charging Stations-ALERT!!

In this SAME Washington, D.C. the police department has just ordered at least 60 new VECTRIX scooters, and the National Zoo has been using the VECTRIX scooters for over a year, so you would THINK they know about such vehicles? (The price of gasoline is not related to parking fees, and "Free" parking should only be permitted during chaging, with a very high "PENALTY" parking fee imposed for parking more than 15 minutes after charge time completion!)--This would reduce the tendency to "HOG" the charge point, and make it available for more users.--Bob Curry

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Re: Charging Stations-ALERT!!

Dauntless wrote:

. . . Check this map of charging stations. http://www.evchargermaps.com/ Do you have any idea how many of those don't even work? (In my area, MOST of them . . . . . .

Check the map. If a charging station East of the West Coast wants to charge only $3.00 great: they don't have a whole lot of competition.

Assuming people won't want to pay a minimum of $3.00 to charge their vehicle is like saying people won't want to buy a $7.00 beer at a Redskins Game because they can get it cheaper at home.

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Re: Charging Stations-ALERT!!

Dauntless wrote:

This whole, shall I say 'Balsamic' fantasy of the free ride in the electric will have to be awakened from someday.

I agree that if someone works out how to charge for something then they will charge for it. So no free ride for electrics. But. Have a look at the free ride that's being given to the current system. Just look at the electricity that is *already* being given away free to support the current petrol powered cars.

I live in a medium size town and I would conservatively guess there's at least 2000 street lights. They're not there for the pedestrians. The pedestrian only walkways get no lighting. They don't shine on the footpath. They shine on the road and they're there for the cars. In summer when the days are long they're on for about 10 hours. Each one draws 80 watts. So that's 800 watt hours. (more in winter of course) Times 2000, that's 1600 kWh every single night. Enough electricity given away every night for me to ride my zero completely around the world. Or for me to ride to work and back for 27 years. Well actually for 54 years because I charge at home, so it would only be replacing the power I used to get into town, not the full return trip. So how many free (or even paid) charge points are there in town... None. Not one.

It's the existing system that's getting the free ride not the EV's

=:)

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Re: Charging Stations-ALERT!!

The best figures I can find show that there's around 15 million street lights in the USA. Given that they average around 80 watts draw and are on for a bit over 12 hours a day 7 days a week, they draw around 100 million kWh every week. The average commute is 16 miles each way and given the mix of 9 day fortnights, sick leave, part time workers and holidays I think 4 days per week commute is reasonable as an estimate of average. So that's an average of 64 miles per week into work. So if the EV's are charged at home, and the charge at work only covers the run into work... How many commuters could be supported if the EV system got an equal free ride, just on the electricty front (we'll put aside heathcare, defence, debt interest etc for a moment).

Well if they all rode zeros (which is what I ride to work) 64 miles uses about 5 kWh. So that means 20 million commuters could recharge at work or in town for free before the subsidy equals the current subsidy given to the existing system, *just* for electricity alone. I think the EV population has a lot of expansion to do before it hits 20 million in the USA

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PJD
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Re: Charging Stations-ALERT!!

I suspect that the average mercury-vapor or sodium vapor street light bulb is a lot higher than 80 watts. Probably at least 250 watts.

The is an ongoing changeover to LED street lighting, so the wattages will be dropping considerably.

And I suspect the work habits of USAn are somewhat different that down there, many work 6 day a week, and 2 weeks a year leave for vacations (holidays) is generous for the average US worker. And most private vehicle commutes are done in cars.

but applying these factors, the figure of 20 million is still about correct.

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