Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Leaf 2, the sequel

I've promised a bunch of people I would keep them posted on our Leaf and how it's going.
Since we bought this beautiful little electric car, we been asked a lot of questions.
"What happens when it rains?" from a concerned granddaughter.
"How far can you go before it dies?"
"What if it stops on you out in the country?"
"How much is your power bill going to be?
All good questions and I don't have all the answers yet.
We do know that it's working just fine so far to simply plug it into the regular house outlet in the garage. And it didn't explode in the last thunderstorm.
Every morning we start out with about 100 miles to go on a charge.
Then as I drive around doing my chores, I come home with about 100 miles left. (The kinetic energy generated from braking builds up the battery.)
If we go on the freeway or if we haul a load of kids up and down hills, we use more miles, not a lot but more.
The closest I've come to running out of battery power was coming home from shopping in Salt Lake. The light on the dashboard starting blinking and telling me I had 14 miles to go but when I stopped at my daughter's house, her neighbor came over to share Leaf stories and told me he has a dedicated 240 plug that I could use when I'm running low.
We've checked out the charging stations nearby. The Nissan dealership even told us to drive right up on the sidewalk to plug in (for free).
The Walgreen's store in Springville acknowledged our SemaConnect card and charged us up for $1.18.
We haven't been overly worried but we have been doing an unusual amount of adding and subtracting. We're also having a great time earning trees! (The car keeps track of economical driving habits and rewards us with trees when we do a good job!)
We are also making new friends. There's kind of a subculture of people who own and drive electric cars. If we wanted we could even join PlugShare where people offer their home chargers to strangers in need of a little power.
We are a teeny bit concerned about the tow hinge and the tow rope and assorted towing equipment that comes free with the car.
And when we asked about the spare tire, the service manager showed us the complimentary patch kit that comes packed in the side panel.
He reassured me — after I must have blanched — that our free roadside assistance and 3-year warranty would take care of anything like that.
So on we go.
We haven't had a power bill yet but we've been told not to worry. Our insurance went up a little bit but our gasoline bill is way down.
It'll all work out.
It'll be fine.
We'll see and I'll let you know!

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