Electric Cars- It makes you wonder…

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From an Email sent by our Subscriber Grove Crank…….

   Ever since the advent of electric cars, the REAL cost per mile of those things has never been discussed.  All you ever heard was the mpg in terms of gasoline, with nary a mention of the cost of electricity to run it.

   Electricity has to be one of the least efficient ways to power things yet they’re being shoved down our throats… 

   At a neighborhood BBQ I was talking to a neighbor, a BC Hydro executive.  I asked him how that renewable thing was doing.  He laughed, then got serious.  If you really intend to adopt electric vehicles, he pointed out, you had to face certain realities.  For example, a home charging system for a Tesla requires 75 amp service.  The average house is equipped with 100 amp service.  On our small street (approximately 25 homes), the electrical infrastructure would be unable to carry more than 3 houses with a single Tesla, each.  For even half the homes to have electric vehicles, the system would be wildly over-loaded.

    This is the elephant in the room with electric vehicles.  Our residential infrastructure cannot bear the load.  So as our genius elected officials promote this nonsense, not only are we being urged to buy the damn things and replace our reliable, cheap generating systems with expensive, new windmills and solar cells, but we will also have to renovate our entire delivery system!  This latter “investment” will not be revealed until we’re so far down this dead end road that it will be presented with an ‘OOPS!’ and a shrug.

     If you want to argue with a green person over cars that are eco-friendly, just read the following.  Note: If you ARE a green person, read it anyway.  It’s enlightening.

     Eric test drove the Chevy Volt at the invitation of General Motors … and he writes, “For four days in a row, the fully charged battery lasted only 25 miles before the Volt switched to the reserve gasoline engine.”  Eric calculated the car got 30 mpg including the 25 miles it ran on the battery.  So, the range including the 9-gallon gas tank and the 16 kwh battery is approximately 270 miles.

     It will take you 4-1/2 hours to drive 270 miles at 60 mph.  Then add 10 hours to charge the battery and you have a total trip time of 14.5 hours.  In a typical road trip your average speed (including charging time) would be 20 mph.

     According to General Motors, the Volt battery holds 16 kwh of electricity.  It takes a full 10 hours to charge a drained battery.  The cost for the electricity to charge the Volt is never mentioned so I looked up what I pay for electricity.  I pay approximately (it varies with amount used and the seasons) $1.16 per kwh. 16 kwh x $1.16 per kwh = $18.56 to charge the battery.  $18.56 per charge divided by 25 miles = $0.74 per mile to operate the Volt using the battery.  Compare this to a similar size car with a gasoline engine that gets only 32 mpg.  $3.19 per gallon divided by 32 mpg = $0.10 per mile.

    The gasoline powered car costs about $20,000 while the Volt costs $46,000+.  So the American Government wants loyal Americans not to do the math, but simply pay three times as much for a car, that costs more than seven times as much to run, and takes three times longer to drive across the country.

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21 Responses to Electric Cars- It makes you wonder…

  1. Paul July 26, 2017 at 9:14 am

    What a crock! The average US dwelling has a 200 amp service; only trailers might have 100A service. And I can’t imagine where you’re living to be paying $1.16 per kWHr! It’s 10c/KwHr over most of the US. Hydro costs 2c/KwHr to generate and Canada has a lot of that. That’s why the streets of Ottawa can have electric heating coils in them to keep the snow at bay. You wouldn’t be doing that at $1.16/kwHr!

    On the other hand, it is true that when you take into account battery replacement cost the running cost to drive an electric vehicle is only slightly better than gasoline. However, the maintenance costs should be way, way down. A pure electric car like a Tesla has no transmission, no transmission fluid, no spark plugs, no ignition coils, no injectors, no radiators, no coolant, no hoses, no water pumps, no fan belts, no engine, no oil filters, no oil coolers, no mufflers, no catalytic converters, no gas tank, no starter motor, no alternator,no air filter etc. The absence of those things to go wrong will make an electric car thousands of dollars cheaper per year to keep running, and they should eventually be cheaper than gasoline vehicles to manufacture and buy once the novelty wears off.

    JIM MACKIN July 26, 2017 at 10:30 am

    I am calling you on your supposition that “The average US dwelling has a 200 amp service.” All indications from my own experience in the electrical trade and quick research is that an 100 Amp service is more average. I’ll put a 10 Spot that the average stick home built in the last 70 years has more like 100 Amps.

    Right now the cost of SCE power has just two domestic tiers: As of Jan. 1, 2017: Starting in 2017, there will be just two tiers, with Tier 1 energy use costing 16.9 cents per kilowatt-hour and Tier 2 energy use costing 25.9 cents per kilowatt-hour.

    Just pointing out the inconsistency of your argument… I make no judgement on the electric car issue.

    I do want to point out that about 65% of US electricity generation was from fossil fuels (coal, natural gas, petroleum, and other gases), about 20% was from nuclear energy, and about 15% was from renewable energy sources as of Apr 18, 2017.


  3. July 28, 2017 at 6:17 pm

    Are there enough charging stations to make a cross country trip?

      JIM MACKIN July 29, 2017 at 9:27 am

      I’m not sure that there are enough charging stations to get across San Bernardino County.

    JIM MACKIN July 30, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    You are both ill informed or even not informed. There are PLENTY of charging stations to drive any place in the United States you wish to go. At the high end are the superchargers and at the low end a wall outlet will do.

      JIM MACKIN July 31, 2017 at 7:35 am

      First…. I am not going to deny that electric vehicles are an excellent alternative to Fossil Fueled vehicles in a Urban Environment. It could make air in Urban areas clean. I do question if it would serve Rural areas that well.

      The power grid has problems keeping up with Air conditioning and other modern power requirements let alone putting the country’s automobile and or trucking fleet on that grid..

      Unless there is a multi fold bolster of both the power grid and and increase in total electrical power production a total electric fleet is a pipe dream.
      Adding more load to our power grid will be an expensive investment by private industry and government

      Solar and wind is not the answer. They have become Environmental disasters. It seems that Nuclear power plants are out of the question by most. This leaves Fossil fuel power generation as the only practical answer.

      At best a 300 mile range per charge and a 14 hour charge using 110v ac, it would take 10 days to get from coast to coast.

      I found this report from a government source:

      This tells you that the fuel for an electric vehicle with an energy efficiency of 3 miles per kWh costs about 3.3 cents per mile when electricity costs 10 cents per kWh. The national average cost for electricity in the U.S. is about 10 cents per kWh, while the average residential rate is about 11.7 cents per kWh.
      Comparing Energy Costs per Mile for Electric and Gasoline-Fueled …

      The above report says electric is cheaper per mile, but does not take into consideration the increased load on our electrical grid and the additional need for Fossil fueled power plants.

      Already we see the unfair burden rural citizens and landscapes endure when it comes to the Urban citizens desire for more power, more maga watt facilities to power all these electric vehicles, but want solar fields, Wind generators and Oil burning power plants, “out of sight, out of mind”. They want them in the desert or farm lands.

      Rural citizens, will continue by and large to use Fossil Fueled transportation. And they will continue to be burdened with the visual blight of the Combined Power Industry..

  5. July 31, 2017 at 9:00 am

    Thanks Dan for an accurate rebuttal.

    JIM MACKIN July 31, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    I wonder how Europe can be planning to stop making fossil fuel vehicles. Just a fast Google reveals, Sweden, Norway, Germany, India, Netherlands, United Kingdom and France most by 2040.

    Volvo is ceasing fossil fuel vehicle builds by 2019.

    I had thought we were innovators and leaders but it appears not in this case.

    IMHO by not moving forward and working on this we will place ourselves behind these countries in manufacturing and jobs.

      JIM MACKIN July 31, 2017 at 1:19 pm

      Volvo is not ceasing production of fossil fueled autos by 2019…. They are going to make their fleet mostly hybrid… read that article again. Hybrid means Gas motor as the generator to charge batteries.

      They say In 2040 India will be having men living on the moon too.

      Look as forward as you want, but be realistic.

      • JIM MACKIN
        JIM MACKIN August 2, 2017 at 5:51 pm

        They just might do that because they do not allow their religion to interfere with their scientific progress where we in the good old USA, that has a separation of church and state clause, lost our way in the 80’s.

 August 3, 2017 at 5:41 pm


          • JIM MACKIN
            JIM MACKIN August 3, 2017 at 5:43 pm

            I then guess you put religion above science. That is fine with me.

          • JIM MACKIN
            JIM MACKIN August 5, 2017 at 8:18 pm

            Talking about this subject and interesting article in RNS titled Hinduism and its complicated history with cows By Wendy Doniger | July 18, 2017 says in part:

            “(The Conversation) Just this past June, at a national meeting of various Hindu organizations in India, a popular preacher, Sadhvi Saraswati, suggested that those who consumed beef should be publicly hanged. Later, at the same conclave, an animal rights activist, Chetan Sharma, said,

            “Cow is also the reason for global warming. When she is slaughtered, something called EPW is released, which is directly responsible for global warming. It’s what is called emotional pain waves.”

            These provocative remarks come at a time when vigilante Hindu groups in India are lynching people for eating beef. Such killings have increased since Narendra Modi and his right-wing Bharatiya Janata party came to power in September 2014. In September 2015, a 50-year-old Muslim man, Mohammad Akhlaq, was lynched by a mob in a village near New Delhi on suspicion that he had consumed beef. Since then, many attacks by cow vigilante groups have followed. Modi’s government has also prohibited the slaughter of buffalo, thus destroying the Muslim-dominated buffalo meat industry and causing widespread economic hardship.

            Most people seem to assume that no Hindu has ever consumed beef. But is this true?

            As a scholar, studying Sanskrit and ancient Indian religion for over 50 years, I know of many texts that offer a clear answer to this question.
            Cows in ancient Indian history

            Scholars have known for centuries that the ancient Indians ate beef. After the fourth century B.C., when the practice of vegetarianism spread throughout India among Buddhists, Jains and Hindus, many Hindus continued to eat beef.

            In the time of the oldest Hindu sacred text, the Rig Veda (c. 1500 B.C.), cow meat was consumed. Like most cattle-breeding cultures, the Vedic Indians generally ate the castrated steers, but they would eat the female of the species during rituals or when welcoming a guest or a person of high status.

            Ancient ritual texts known as Brahmanas (c. 900 B.C.) and other texts that taught religious duty (dharma), from the third century B.C., say that a bull or cow should be killed to be eaten when a guest arrives.

            According to these texts, “the cow is food.” Even when one passage in the “Shatapatha Brahmana” ( forbids the eating of either cow or bull, a revered ancient Hindu sage named Yajnavalkya immediately contradicts it, saying that, nevertheless, he eats the meat of both cow and bull, “as long as it’s tender.”


    JIM MACKIN July 31, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    Thanks for the correction on Volvo. Still pretty bad when India at least is thinking farther out than we are.

    • August 2, 2017 at 3:31 pm

      What’s India doing to stop their millions of water buffalos from polluting the atmosphere?

    JIM MACKIN August 2, 2017 at 5:34 pm

    Probably more than you with your flatulence.

  9. Steve Spear
    Steve Spear August 8, 2017 at 6:03 pm

    Very interesting report today of how numerous scientists have reported that the United States is being hit hard and could be hit harder with the results of manmade climate change.

    It is a mandated report by the Congress of the United States.

    Wonder who will deny the validity of it. Politicians that know nothing of what the scientists are reporting?

    Lets see what Pruitt and Trump do.

  10. August 9, 2017 at 9:25 am

    “Our cats and dogs eat enough meat to create tons of greenhouse gases every year.” L A Times 8/7/17: “According to a new study, U.S. cats and dogs eating patterns have as much effect as driving 13.6 million cars for a year” From a 2014 study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. “That’s 64 million tons of methane and nitrous oxide.” Should we get rid of Fluffy and Fido?

      JIM MACKIN August 9, 2017 at 12:45 pm

      Of course not but why ADD to what the cats and dogs and human and cows release when there is another way. Just saying.

  11. August 9, 2017 at 6:03 pm

    Because that’s what Al Gore and you want. No pollutants.

    JIM MACKIN August 10, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    That would be nice.

    No smog, no exhaust fumes to smell…. but that is not realistic. What is realistic is to stop adding “stuff” that we know is not good for us.

    But……….. others think it is a political game and not a game of survival.

    You and I won’t see it in all of its glory when it comes and I hope all the science is wrong as some say but if it is right even partially so we then have done a grave disservice to our descendants.


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