eyemgh
Posts: 33
Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2017 1:32 am
Delivery Date: 26 Oct 2017
Location: Ashland, OR

Does SoH Rule All?

Thu Oct 26, 2017 10:47 pm

I have another thread going trying to ascertain how close people are getting to asking price to figure out what I should look to pay. This is more about vetting an EV.

My gut tells me that SoH rules all, but I don't know that for sure. For example, if I find a '13 with 90% and the exact same configuration in a '14, also with 90%, is it likely that they will have the same pack life, all else equal? I'm trying to determine whether or not there's any value in paying a premium for a newer model.

I guess the same question holds for mileage. Let's say 15k with 90% SoH versus 30k with 90% SoH. Is there value in paying lots more for the lower mileage car.

In an ICE car, I'd have a better handle, but for an EV, I've got no clue.

Thanks!

LeftieBiker
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Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Does SoH Rule All?

Thu Oct 26, 2017 10:56 pm

Think of SOH as equivalent to the health of the engine and transmission of an ICE car. Would you want a rusty or banged up ICE with a great drivetrain? You should look for several cars that match what you are looking for in model and options, then pick the one with the best SOH, much as you'd do with an ICE purchase and prospective drivetrains. With the caveat that an early build (or maybe any month 2016 build) 30kwh 2016 Leaf may lose capacity faster than you expect.
Last edited by LeftieBiker on Fri Oct 27, 2017 2:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
2013 "Brilliant Silver" SV with Premium Package and no QC, and 2009 Vectrix VX-1 with 18 Leaf cells.

The most offensive, tasteless phrase in use here is "Pulled the trigger." I no longer respond to posts that use it.

alozzy
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Location: Vancouver, BC
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Re: Does SoH Rule All?

Thu Oct 26, 2017 11:41 pm

I'm beginning to suspect that AHr is the most important indicator of battery health. Anecdotally, people seem to consistently lost their first capacity bar at between 55 AHr and 56 AHr values, but the SOH values seem to be more variable (anywhere from 81% to 87% range) when the first bar drops.

I know my Leaf is close to losing the first bar, but I can't complain as my mileage is now pushing 58k. Guess I won't be getting a free replacement battery ;)
Vancouver, CA owner of a 2013 Ocean Blue SV + QC, purchased 01/2017 in WA
Zencar 12/20/24/30A L1/L2 portable EVSE
1-1/4" Curt #11396 hitch
After market, DIY LED DRLs
LeafSpy Pro + Konnwei KW902 ELM327 BT OBDII dongle
Loving my first BEV :D

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Stanton
Posts: 1958
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2011 10:56 am
Delivery Date: 01 Sep 2011
Leaf Number: 7458
Location: Plano, TX
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Re: Does SoH Rule All?

Fri Oct 27, 2017 7:26 am

alozzy wrote:I'm beginning to suspect that AHr is the most important indicator of battery health. Anecdotally, people seem to consistently lost their first capacity bar at between 55 AHr and 56 AHr values, but the SOH values seem to be more variable (anywhere from 81% to 87% range) when the first bar drops.


This is what I have come to believe as well (bold font added by me above). I'm on my second battery pack...hovering around the high-end of those AHr values and low-end of those SOH values...and suspect I won't drop my first bar until the weather gets warmer again, which would be an improvement over the original battery pack. However, I seem to remember that first bar didn't drop on my original battery pack until closer to 53 AHr?
2011 Blue Ocean SV w/floor mats & window tint
12v LiFePO4 battery & FIAMM 74100 horns
Wet Okole seat covers (front)
Tor's low-power heater mod
2013 sun visor
3G modem upgrade
L2 EVSE Upgrade
Battery Pack replaced (Rev E) @51 months and 41k miles

eyemgh
Posts: 33
Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2017 1:32 am
Delivery Date: 26 Oct 2017
Location: Ashland, OR

Re: Does SoH Rule All?

Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:10 am

OK, I'm a newbie dork. I can find lots of references to AHr, but I can't find a definition of AHr. What is it? :?

cwerdna
Gold Member
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Location: SF Bay Area, CA

Re: Does SoH Rule All?

Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:47 am

eyemgh wrote:OK, I'm a newbie dork. I can find lots of references to AHr, but I can't find a definition of AHr. What is it? :?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ampere_hour

'13 blue Leaf SV w/premium package (owned)
'13 blue Leaf SV w/QC + LED & premium packages (lease over, car returned)
'06 Prius

SageBrush
Posts: 1498
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:28 am
Delivery Date: 13 Feb 2017
Location: Colorado

Re: Does SoH Rule All?

Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:51 am

OP, you have discovered the seekret formula to buying LEAF cheaply:

High (and true) SOH/Ahr, high(er) mileage, and good condition car

This works because dealers do not in general know how to assess battery health so they go by mileage and "12 bars." Since pretty much all LEAFS are low mileage cars when they come off lease and there has been very little change in design from 2012 -- 2015 besides the battery improvement in 4/2013+, an informed buyer buys an older car in good shape with a good battery.

In your shoes I would target late 2014 cars in good condition with ~ 90% battery remaining (60 Ahr, 90% SOH) and "high" mileage, meaning high 20s, low 30s k miles
2013 Model 'S' with QC & rear-view camera
Bought off-lease Jan 2017 from N. California with 63.9 Ahr after 22k miles
Car is now enjoying an easy life in Colorado

eyemgh
Posts: 33
Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2017 1:32 am
Delivery Date: 26 Oct 2017
Location: Ashland, OR

Re: Does SoH Rule All?

Fri Oct 27, 2017 12:57 pm

That's sort of where my rapid learning has led me. Taking it one step further, probably a SV with CHAdeMO and LED headlights, but without the premium package, seems like the sweet spot for "the deal."

My biggest challenge is geographic isolation. There aren't a lot of options close by. It's hard to Leaf Spy from a distance. Any strategy suggestions?

SageBrush
Posts: 1498
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:28 am
Delivery Date: 13 Feb 2017
Location: Colorado

Re: Does SoH Rule All?

Fri Oct 27, 2017 4:48 pm

I towed my LEAF home using a trailer from U-Haul. The trailer was cheap, but you need access to an appropriate vehicle with a 2" hitch.
2013 Model 'S' with QC & rear-view camera
Bought off-lease Jan 2017 from N. California with 63.9 Ahr after 22k miles
Car is now enjoying an easy life in Colorado

alozzy
Posts: 716
Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2017 4:25 pm
Delivery Date: 18 Jan 2017
Location: Vancouver, BC
Contact: Website

Re: Does SoH Rule All?

Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:46 pm

@eyemgh Some dealerships actually know how to use LeafSpy and will give you the SOH and AHr values. Some will even email you LeafSpy screenshots. Paramount Motors NW did that for me, which gave me the confidence to drive down from Vancouver, CA to Seattle to check it out. I also looked at several other Leafs en route, at a Nissan dealership in Edmonds, WA.

An added challenge for me was importing the vehicle into Canada.

So, it's really about how badly you want to get a good deal and what lengths you'll go to to make that happen.

I figured I would have the Leaf for 5 years, so I felt it was well worth the effort to take Amtrak down to Seattle and then to drive the Leaf back home (several DCQCs and a final L2 in Bellingham). Round trip was close to 300 miles. You could likely get a better deal in Portland, as long as you are prepared to put in the work and time to pull it off.

Autotrader listings for Portland area, in case you're interested:

https://goo.gl/2UW5q7
Vancouver, CA owner of a 2013 Ocean Blue SV + QC, purchased 01/2017 in WA
Zencar 12/20/24/30A L1/L2 portable EVSE
1-1/4" Curt #11396 hitch
After market, DIY LED DRLs
LeafSpy Pro + Konnwei KW902 ELM327 BT OBDII dongle
Loving my first BEV :D

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