Frank
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Fri May 28, 2010 11:14 am

This thread got me thinking about the Fog lights on the Leaf. I know that the headlights are LED so they probably use very little power. But what about the fog lights? Are they LED also?
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Fri May 28, 2010 11:52 am

Frank wrote:This thread got me thinking about the Fog lights on the Leaf. I know that the headlights are LED so they probably use very little power. But what about the fog lights? Are they LED also?


My fuzzy memory is that Nissan said all lights on the car were LED.
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Nubo
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Fri May 28, 2010 2:54 pm

I would suspect the Fogs to be LED as well, for the same reason as the headlamps. Incandescent fog lamps can run 55 watts apiece.

I'll be interested in learning more details about the LED headlamps. I've got what is considered a powerful LED headlight for my bicycle, at about 700 lumens, utilizing 6 high-power LEDs. Now that's only about half the lumens a good car headlamp puts out so it will be interesting to see what kind of emitters they're using and how many.
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daniel
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Fri May 28, 2010 5:54 pm

bradford wrote:how useful is the solar panel's charging?
It serves one purpose only: It's for show. Since the car is electric, some wise guy is going to ask why don't you run it off solar panels. With the Leaf you can point to the solar panel. Someone uneducated enough to suggest running the car that way will easily be convinced that indeed it does. Then you can tell them you don't actually have to plug the car in as long as it gets some sunlight during the day. Keep a straight face and you might convince them.

MikeBoxwell wrote:Back in the early 1990s, Audi put a similarly sized solar panel onto the roof of the Audi A8. They used it to power some tiny fans to extract hot air from the car in the summer. The idea was that when you got back into the car on a really hot day, it wouldn't feel like a cook-house. Apparently it worked pretty well for that.

There's an option on certain trim lines of the 2010 Prius that does this. But I've not heard that the leaf will.
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Fri May 28, 2010 8:21 pm

It seems to me that the cabin heating must be off the main battery, not the 12V. Nissan is advertising the fact that one can remotely activate it to preheat the cabin in the morning while it is still plugged in, thus using house power instead of draining the battery at the beginning of your commute. This only makes sense if the main battery heats the cabin.

As for the spoiler solar panels, I actually ordered the SV instead of the SL because I hate spoilers and the way it was advertised was the SL had a solar spoiler. I didn't realize that the SV also has a spoiler, just no solar panel on it. Their website was unclear. I tend to think that panel is a gimmick with no real value. It's typical of features with psychological appeal that are designed to draw people into buying the premium package, where profit margins are high.

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EVDRIVER
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Sat May 29, 2010 6:29 am

The only thing a panel that size is good for is keeping a 12v battery toped off over long periods of time, it is too small or even practical to circulate air.

daniel
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Sat May 29, 2010 7:25 am

EVDRIVER wrote:The only thing a panel that size is good for is keeping a 12v battery toped off over long periods of time, it is too small for even a practical to circulate air.

It's not even good for that! Who keeps a car in long-term storage out of doors?
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garygid
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Sat May 29, 2010 9:22 am

1. Medium term (1-2 weeks) "storage" (parking) at an airport lot is probable. If outside parking of the LEAF is the only option, leaving it for the duration of a "family vacation" might be another longer-term "storage" situation.

2. When the heater element is ON, it is likely that a 12v fan will also be on.
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MikeBoxwell
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Mon May 31, 2010 3:42 am

daniel wrote:It's not even good for that! Who keeps a car in long-term storage out of doors?



Maybe not in the US, but in the Europe everybody leaves their car parked outside their homes. A garage is just somewhere to dump worthless 'stuff' whilst the real investment - the $20,000 - $30,000 car, is left outside.

No. I don't understand it either...

daniel
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Re: use of solar panel at spoiler on roof?

Thu Jun 03, 2010 8:29 am

garygid wrote:1. Medium term (1-2 weeks) "storage" (parking) at an airport lot is probable. If outside parking of the LEAF is the only option, leaving it for the duration of a "family vacation" might be another longer-term "storage" situation.

You don't need a battery charger during a two-week vacation. The Prius has a tiny, inadequate 12-volt battery, and I've left it for as much as six weeks without starting it, with no ill effects.

As for overnight parking on the street, obviously the solar panel will do no good there.

For anything under a month of storage, a charger is unnecessary, and it's probably unneeded for anything under two or three months. And so few people are going to leave a new car outside for that length of time, that the solar panels really do nothing at all. They do, however, serve to underline that the car is electric. There is a "cool" factor, even though it's only a perception, not a real functional feature.

I think it's nice they have it. But if it were an option I would not pay for it.
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