It is always better to cycle the battery more times with lower discharge, but near the 50% point. For example if you need 6 bars to get from point A to B everyday, then it is best to charge to 9 bars and discharge to 3 bars. Obviously, you need to preserve whatever reserve feels comfortable for you, but a lower "average" state of charge (SOC) is better for long term storage/use. Most people "over charge" (e.g., fill to 90-100% daily and then only discharge to 40-60% SOC after the day's driving).imaric wrote:Is it better to drive from let's say 80-90% charge down to 1 or 2 bars, or to stay in mid-range 40-80% and do a mid-day charge. Higher charge and lower discharge, VS. more charging cycles?
However, I wouldn't worry about it since the effect is much less than 1) high battery temperature, 2) high speed charging/discharging (this includes "spirited" driving with heavy acceleration/deceleration), 3) average high freeway speeds, and 4) leaving the battery in a high state of charge. People have heavily debated all of these things for the past 5 years and there are still lots of unknowns. However, there have been cases where two users in identical locations had significant (still small, but measurable) differences in battery degradation. In these cases, it usually came down to "spirited" or high-speed highway driving/charging causing slightly more degradation (10-20%).
Just use the vehicle as much as you can. Calendar time will get them all in the end. I've seen 20% degradation and have less than 30,000 mi on the car, mostly all low speed city driving. That is the curse of a low mileage driver. I've babied the battery, charging between 30%-80% nearly exclusively, and with low speed city driving (nearly 6 mi/KWh in summer). I'm not happy about the loss and it's certainly much more than Nissan advertised. Unfortunately, I'm pretty much screwed but at least I will still be able to drive for groceries in another 10 years (I was hoping for 20 yrs). The record high mileage driver (TaylorSFGuy) clocked in nearly 80,000 miles before he lost 15%, but that was in a moderate climate and driving about 140 miles per day! Drive on, and enjoy.