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New owner

Posted: Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:06 pm
by Rainman320
Hi I just purchased a 2016 spark ev and wanted to see if anyone can help with some tips and tricks and best ways to keep an eye on the battery life only been 1 day but loving it so far

Re: New owner

Posted: Wed May 01, 2019 10:18 am
by Kermit
Torque Pro for Android (~$5) is the best App I have used with a bluetooth OBD2 adapter. The Pro version allows you to import the PIDs for the Chevy bolt. A quick search of this forum should help you get that setup, there is also a video of how to do it by thelondonbroiler. I did have to get an old Android phone for Torque it to work since my main phone is an Apple. I found Enginelink for iOS will give you the capacity as well but there isn't much else it can do well.

Re: New owner

Posted: Thu May 02, 2019 1:10 pm
by wiseguyz23
Congrats. I've had mine for about a month now and I love it. As another person her recommended to me, just drive it and enjoy it. I personally charge when it drops to 20%, but I only drive mine around my town in the foothills. I only charge, on average, once every 3 days.

Re: New owner

Posted: Mon May 27, 2019 9:19 pm
by flyingpertyhigh
Nice pic of car. I have another thread on here about how my wife commutes in our 2014 Spark EV 78.5 miles to work everyday without stopping to charge. Our 2014 Spark with 51,000 miles still indicates 82 miles of range with a full charge.

If you ever need to drive anywhere at the edge of your cars range and won't or can't stop to charge (or don't have DCFC), there are numerous tricks to squeezing every last bit of range out of your car. Read around the threads - you're not going to get replies to this thread with this information - you have to do a little work and search and find it; it will be worth it.

Read about drafting behind a truck. Driving 100 feet behind a semi at 55 mph will reduce drag on your car by 40%. The drag reduction increases as you approach the bumper of the truck until you get a 93% drag reduction at a distance of 2 feet. Think about that! 100 fee is really far back and you get almost have the drag.

Another thing to consider about drag - it increases by a factor of 4 as your speed increases by a factor of 2. Meaning drag does not increase linearly. So going 65mph isn't only slightly worse than going 55mph - significantly worse.

Get a 240v charger no matter what other people say. Or if you have an electric dryer plug, do some reading on how to use that to charge your car. We have 2 EVs and use our dryer plug for one (switched to natural gas dryer) and installed a 240v 20amp outlet for the other.

The OnStar is useful so you know what your car's charge level is, especially at public chargers. If you're charging at a public charger without OnStar to tell you your battery percentage, you have to estimate based on charging amperage and time and could potentially get unnecessary fees for being plugged in longer than necessary (or alternatively, not charger up enough and leave early).

We always drive in L and put a lot of effort into proper one-foot driving skills. Avoid stopping and starting as much as possible! Example: when you take an off ramp, and you can see ahead the light is red, don't continue driving towards the light at high speed and then hit the brakes and come to a complete stop. Instead, start slowly slowing down using regenerative braking, half coasting half slowing, and go slow enough that the light changes back to green and you can continue off with some momentum from your previous highway speed.

I could go on and on - been driving electric vehicles for years and years. Electric bikes, electric Vespa, etc.

Re: New owner

Posted: Tue May 28, 2019 4:07 am
by NORTON
flyingpertyhigh wrote:
Mon May 27, 2019 9:19 pm
Nice pic of car. I have another thread on here about how my wife commutes in our 2014 Spark EV 78.5 miles to work everyday without stopping to charge. Our 2014 Spark with 51,000 miles still indicates 82 miles of range with a full charge.
You must live where it's warm all the time! 78 miles !!!
That's too much for me. We have winter weather, with a vengeance.....

Although just putzin around town this long weekend, mine with 66k miles just displayed 82 miles on the GOM !!

This time of year I only charge near work during the work week for free.
I could make 3 one way trips on a charge but, I don't pinch the cheap electrons ever.

This car is too much fun to tip toe on the Go pedal!!

I'm in the left lane of the interstate with all my 70-80 mph buds, occasionally hitting the 90 mph limit.
Driving in L is not an advantage. YOU are still in charge of all your car's velocity changes. I like Normal Driving Style and use the brake pedal as a variable regen control. When the regen maxes then the friction brakes begin.

Re: New owner

Posted: Tue May 28, 2019 6:00 am
by flyingpertyhigh
NORTON wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 4:07 am
flyingpertyhigh wrote:
Mon May 27, 2019 9:19 pm
Nice pic of car. I have another thread on here about how my wife commutes in our 2014 Spark EV 78.5 miles to work everyday without stopping to charge. Our 2014 Spark with 51,000 miles still indicates 82 miles of range with a full charge.
You must live where it's warm all the time! 78 miles !!!
That's too much for me. We have winter weather, with a vengeance.....

Although just putzin around town this long weekend, mine with 66k miles just displayed 82 miles on the GOM !!

This time of year I only charge near work during the work week for free.
I could make 3 one way trips on a charge but, I don't pinch the cheap electrons ever.

This car is too much fun to tip toe on the Go pedal!!

I'm in the left lane of the interstate with all my 70-80 mph buds, occasionally hitting the 90 mph limit.
Driving in L is not an advantage. YOU are still in charge of all your car's velocity changes. I like Normal Driving Style and use the brake pedal as a variable regen control. When the regen maxes then the friction brakes begin.
I disagree about L. When you’re in D you only get access to full regen when you hit the brake pedal we find it too hard to find the sweet spot on the brake pedal between when regen ends and when mechanical braking begins, causing us to waste energy on mechanical braking when we were hitting the brake pedal to get full regen. Using L solves this.

L also allows 1 pedal driving which in my opinion is just superior driving. I feel like I’m in an 80s Oldsmobile with the way this thing coasts in D

Re: New owner

Posted: Tue May 28, 2019 4:27 pm
by SparkE
flyingpertyhigh wrote:
Mon May 27, 2019 9:19 pm

Read about drafting behind a truck. Driving 100 feet behind a semi at 55 mph will reduce drag on your car by 40%. The drag reduction increases as you approach the bumper of the truck until you get a 93% drag reduction at a distance of 2 feet. Think about that! 100 fee is really far back and you get almost have the drag.
I am a *huge* fan of efficiency (in all things) however - BE SAFE! rather than say "XXX feet" behind a truck, I say "YY seconds". You see the truck pass a sign or some paint on the road, you start counting "1001, 1002, 1003, 1004, ..." . Personally, I don't like being closer than 4 seconds (which for me is a *minimum* safe distance). I am generally 6-8 seconds behind a big-rig, which still does give a *huge* boost in mileage, while still being safe. (IMHO)

Re: New owner

Posted: Wed May 29, 2019 12:12 pm
by NORTON
flyingpertyhigh wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 6:00 am
I disagree about L. When you’re in D you only get access to full regen when you hit the brake pedal we find it too hard to find the sweet spot on the brake pedal between when regen ends and when mechanical braking begins, causing us to waste energy on mechanical braking when we were hitting the brake pedal to get full regen. Using L solves this.

L also allows 1 pedal driving which in my opinion is just superior driving. I feel like I’m in an 80s Oldsmobile with the way this thing coasts in D
Agree to disagree. This topic is never ending on the Volt forum.
At 60kW of regen you are braking pretty hard already. The fine line of when the friction brakes begin is not important.

I like coasting. Foot not on any pedal. A gentleman can shift his butt, adjust the twins.
In L you have to always work at what speed you are at. No coasting for you. Your foot must be planted on that pedal for the entire trip, etc, etc, ...

To each his own.

At least Chevy gave us a choice of driving styles.
In a Tesla you have to drive '1 Pedal' style. They don't have blended brakes. Too high tech, I guess. ;)

Re: New owner

Posted: Wed May 29, 2019 12:15 pm
by NORTON
Drafting semi trucks,,, just to save a few pennies in electrons......

And I thought I was cheap..... 8-)

Re: New owner

Posted: Wed May 29, 2019 2:15 pm
by MrDRMorgan
NORTON wrote:
Wed May 29, 2019 12:15 pm
Drafting semi trucks,,, just to save a few pennies in electrons......

And I thought I was cheap..... 8-)
:D In some cases this is the only way to "ensure" you make it to a distant charging location when your GOM says you will not make it. Sometimes, I do it for fun but you have to watch out for rocks flying off of the rear tires of the truck. The windshield is mighty expensive to replace - like $750 installed!! There is no after-market replacement available. You have to get it from GM! :D