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dgpcolorado
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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Sat Sep 27, 2014 3:43 pm

kikngas wrote:The 2015 S has the real-time indication of miles per kWh, which I believe is the "energy meter" provided when there is no nav installed. But it pegs at 8 with any coasting or regen, thus making it difficult to confirm until you also check the bubbles, and you have to watch it all of the time to try and use throttle to achieve a good neutral. And the gauge jumping about seems to show how badly I am doing with the throttle :cry:
The energy meter on the SV/SL is vastly superior to crude energy efficiency bar on the dash. It displays a pie chart that shows kW used or generated in real time. It is easy to use that display to keep the LEAF at zero kW (the equivalent of neutral). Another graph in the display shows the real time power used by the climate control system, which is also very useful to track.

My LeafDD also displays real time power information via a bar graph, so that's the one I watch now because it is always on and I put it in a convenient location. If one of those ever comes up for sale you might want to grab it.
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kikngas
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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Sat Sep 27, 2014 5:48 pm

dgpcolorado wrote:The energy meter on the SV/SL is vastly superior to crude energy efficiency bar on the dash. It displays a pie chart that shows kW used or generated in real time. It is easy to use that display to keep the LEAF at zero kW (the equivalent of neutral). Another graph in the display shows the real time power used by the climate control system, which is also very useful to track.


Ah, so that's why I've not found the indication of power used by CC.

On the brake lights, I've done my share of engine braking down hills as well. But it's much easier to just tap the brakes enough to flip on the lights when your other use of the energy is to burn gas to slow down :lol: In fact I would always pump the brakes both so they can cool a bit in between, and to catch the eye of those behind me more than once and get them thinking about the stoplight at the bottom of the hill or etc. ...which they oftentimes seem to do, but there's always that one that darts into the right turn lane and floors it to get to the stop sooner. Or better, use the right turn only lane to pass those turning left that have stopped the lane that goes straight or turns left. That makes a very safe environment for the oncoming that is trying to turn left and can't see the right turn lane coming straight for 'em.

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dgpcolorado
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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Sun Sep 28, 2014 8:30 am

kikngas wrote:Ah, so that's why I've not found the indication of power used by CC.

On the brake lights, I've done my share of engine braking down hills as well. But it's much easier to just tap the brakes enough to flip on the lights when your other use of the energy is to burn gas to slow down :lol: In fact I would always pump the brakes both so they can cool a bit in between, and to catch the eye of those behind me more than once and get them thinking about the stoplight at the bottom of the hill or etc. ...which they oftentimes seem to do, but there's always that one that darts into the right turn lane and floors it to get to the stop sooner. Or better, use the right turn only lane to pass those turning left that have stopped the lane that goes straight or turns left. That makes a very safe environment for the oncoming that is trying to turn left and can't see the right turn lane coming straight for 'em.
When driving mountains in Colorado, using engine compression to control speed on downgrades is something of a safety issue, especially for heavy trucks. Since the engine is at idle fuel levels, the gas used is trivial. Even automatic transmissions should be using lower gears. Riding the brakes for many miles down a steep grade isn't a good practice. Since most mountain roads have a lot of curves, just going down at terminal velocity isn't usually an option, even if it was legal. Many downgrades here have emergency truck ramps for use by out-of-control trucks (but it would be a mighty scary ride until the truck came to one of those).

The lack of enough regen to descend hills without using the friction brakes, is one of my pet peeves about the LEAF.
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JPWhite
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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Sun Sep 28, 2014 10:59 am

dgpcolorado wrote: Even automatic transmissions should be using lower gears. Riding the brakes for many miles down a steep grade isn't a good practice. Since most mountain roads have a lot of curves, just going down at terminal velocity isn't usually an option, even if it was legal.


The 2007 Altima CVT does a pretty good job of selecting a lower gear when gathering speed downhill with zero acceleration input. My wife sometimes asks why the engine is revving so hard down a hill. I always shudder when I hear people talking about 'pumping brakes'; glad I don't have to ride along.

As you say, shame the LEAF can't increase regen to hold the speed for long downhills.
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kikngas
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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Sun Sep 28, 2014 11:07 am

dgpcolorado wrote:The lack of enough regen to descend hills without using the friction brakes, is one of my pet peeves about the LEAF.


Yes, your mountains require rather different driving style then "my" hills.

"B" mode gives more regen for each bubble shown. So perhaps they were listening to you.

From what I've observed (and I'm sure you have considered), can only suggest that if you traverse the entire hill at a lower speed, the regen seems proportionately stronger. So descent at 50 may be missing out on some regen, but 30 might capture all of it. As I say, I'm sure you know that, and that the conditions do not allow it. More just posting the idea for the next reader that might be able to minimize speed at the crest.

For my up and down hills (not mountains) I am pretty much able to coast down, and store the energy in the speed gain, then try to go up the next with just 2 or 3 bubbles of power, which results in a gradual speed reduction, thus preparing for the next crest.

kikngas
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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Sun Sep 28, 2014 11:12 am

Yes, my reference to pumping brakes was on Minnesota hills, not Colorado mountains. In CO you have to be more concerned about burning up brakes then about flashing the brake lights to help ensure others see the stop light ahead.

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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Sun Sep 28, 2014 2:47 pm

dgpcolorado wrote:
kikngas wrote:Ah, so that's why I've not found the indication of power used by CC.

On the brake lights, I've done my share of engine braking down hills as well. But it's much easier to just tap the brakes enough to flip on the lights when your other use of the energy is to burn gas to slow down :lol: In fact I would always pump the brakes both so they can cool a bit in between, and to catch the eye of those behind me more than once and get them thinking about the stoplight at the bottom of the hill or etc. ...which they oftentimes seem to do, but there's always that one that darts into the right turn lane and floors it to get to the stop sooner. Or better, use the right turn only lane to pass those turning left that have stopped the lane that goes straight or turns left. That makes a very safe environment for the oncoming that is trying to turn left and can't see the right turn lane coming straight for 'em.
When driving mountains in Colorado, using engine compression to control speed on downgrades is something of a safety issue, especially for heavy trucks. Since the engine is at idle fuel levels, the gas used is trivial. Even automatic transmissions should be using lower gears. Riding the brakes for many miles down a steep grade isn't a good practice. Since most mountain roads have a lot of curves, just going down at terminal velocity isn't usually an option, even if it was legal. Many downgrades here have emergency truck ramps for use by out-of-control trucks (but it would be a mighty scary ride until the truck came to one of those).
Same situation applies here, for instance on I-80 from west of Tahoe descending towards Sacramento. There are signs on the steepest grades (I forget the slopes, but there are sections at least 6%, but they might be 8 or 10%) which read

Truckers

Let 'er drift

Let 'em cool

with runaway ramps spaced appropriately. The steepest slope I've seen signs on was Hwy 108 just east of Sonora Pass, which is either 25 or 26% and very narrow and windy (several hairpin curves), but that's much too narrow for trucks. Old Priest Grade on the way to/from Yosemite is one I routinely drive, and in the days of drum brakes it was not uncommon to see cars coming back from Yosemite at the bottom that had drifted out into fast moving cross traffic on Hwy 120 (despite using compression braking all the way down I barely stopped short of it a couple of times in my '65 Impala), and the people who lived at the bottom had a hose in their driveway for people to use to put out brake fires - it got plenty of use, and they also had a guest book for people to sign who'd used the hose.

I did have to show my friend how to use the lower gears in his automatic 4Runner when descending this and other steep downhills - apparently many people who've never driven anything other than an automatic are unaware that they can do this.

Sometimes people say "but it's so much cheaper to replace brake pads than a transmission" (this assumes that compression braking is hard on an engine, but it isn't as long as you keep the revs below the red line, using brief brake applications to do so and coasting in between). Some time after I'd gotten my license I raised that point with my dad the truck driver, as to why it made more financial sense to use the brakes. His reply was something along the lines of "If your transmission fails, you signal, pull over to the shoulder, call a tow truck and then repair or replace it. This may cost you a couple thousand. If your brakes fail, you may not be _around_ to have them repaired or replaced for less. How much is your life worth to you?"
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dgpcolorado
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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Mon Sep 29, 2014 11:08 am

kikngas wrote:..."B" mode gives more regen for each bubble shown. So perhaps they were listening to you.
Others have said that B mode is the equivalent of regen in Eco on 2011/2012 models. I have never seen a 2013 or newer LEAF so I have no way to verify that.
From what I've observed (and I'm sure you have considered), can only suggest that if you traverse the entire hill at a lower speed, the regen seems proportionately stronger. So descent at 50 may be missing out on some regen, but 30 might capture all of it...
There is another annoying quirk of the LEAF regen: it is lower (in kW) at higher speeds than at lower speeds (the opposite of what one would expect). Abasile first reported this several years ago and I see it also. Why would one get fewer kW of regen at 50 mph than at 30 mph? It makes no sense. It makes no difference to the battery how fast one is going. Perhaps this has changed on the newer LEAFs (but with no energy meter you likely wouldn't be able to know for sure; the dots aren't an adequate gauge).
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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Tue Nov 18, 2014 4:00 am

Beating the EPA range is not hard if you drive like a hybrid or electric. (this is not a Tesla, so you don't get to drive it like you stole it and get terrific range)

I am consistently getting over 100 per charge (note: I have had an electric before, so I probably opportunity charge waay more than the average Leaf owner). My commute can include some highway, but I chose the lower speed roads (< 50 ) I also drive in B with ECO on.

Can you drive it in D with eco off? Sure. Just don't expect stellar range.
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Re: I Beat EPA's 73 Mile Range : Report your experience

Tue Nov 18, 2014 4:49 am

dgpcolorado wrote:There is another annoying quirk of the LEAF regen: it is lower (in kW) at higher speeds than at lower speeds (the opposite of what one would expect). Abasile first reported this several years ago and I see it also. Why would one get fewer kW of regen at 50 mph than at 30 mph? It makes no sense. It makes no difference to the battery how fast one is going. Perhaps this has changed on the newer LEAFs (but with no energy meter you likely wouldn't be able to know for sure; the dots aren't an adequate gauge).


The effect is worse in winter with a cold battery, I get virtually no regen at highway speeds, but a reasonable amount at slow speeds. Not only is it annoying from a fuel efficiency point of view, but slowing down without braking doesn't occur as you'd expect on the highway and you end up hitting the brakes harder than you'd like. Regen should be consistent regardless of season or speed.
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