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Joined: Thu Dec 15, 2016 9:01 pm

PDX to SEA trip report

Tue May 16, 2017 6:36 am

As I mentioned in the charging forum, I had plans to make a Portland-Seattle round trip which I completed on Sunday. Here's a brief recap of my experience:

I left my home in N. Portland about 12:45, with 100 percent charge. I kept mostly to the speed limits on I-5 (a mix of 60 and 70 in WA) with a single rest stop. Arrived at Tacoma Mall, planning to use the EVgo chargers there. Found one unit broken, the other one in use. At this point I had covered 136 miles with 4.0 mi/KWh average for the trip so far. The SOC showed on bar shy of 50% (45%?) and range estimate 91/111/130 to empty.

There's a Kia dealership with a GreenLots charger not too far from there, but PlugShare reviews were pretty bad, so I continued on a few miles to Fife where the BMW Northwest dealership has a 24KW Chargepoint unit that gives the first 30 minutes free. The friendly staff welcomed me to enjoy the comfortable waiting area inside the showroom complete with refreshments (something I remember fondly from when I owned a BMW). Unfortunately they were only open until 5PM so I only got about 55 minutes of charging in, getting just shy of 80 percent SOC before heading on to Seattle. Traffic between Olympia and Seattle was on and off terrible, like it often is. I arrived at the parking garage and went to the concert.

I left Seattle at about midnight, and decided that with my current SOC I would need to make at least one fast charge stop to get home. I stopped in Tacoma again, this time getting my 30 minutes on the EVgo and getting to almost exactly 80 percent before heading south. Several factors now combined to make the trip home less efficient than the trip up: (1) it was considerably colder, and damp enough to necessitate use of defroster, (2) there was less traffic, meaning more 60 and 70 MPH mileage, (3) Winds were blowing out of the South. In any event, if the guess-o-meter was to be believed I'd arrive home with perhaps 10 miles of range left. Since discretion is the better part of valor, and I knew there was another EVgo CCS charger at the Walmart in Woodland, I decided to stop there. At this point it was 3AM so this also gave me a 30 minute "power nap" to add a measure of safety to the balance of my trip.

Didn't come anywhere near 80% SOC this time, but I didn't need that much, so why pay another connect charge? Anyway made it home with a little under 50% SOC and a total trip average of 3.7 miles/KWh. Not fantastic but considering the conditions, acceptable.

At any rate, the one-way trip should be easily made on a full charge, especially if you don't need defrost...but the 70MPH stretches do make a significant impact on efficiency.

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Joined: Tue Aug 07, 2018 10:42 pm

Re: PDX to SEA trip report

Tue Aug 07, 2018 10:46 pm

Got my Bolt last week, and was planning to go to Seattle (from Portland) in a few days. Was planning to charge in Tacoma, so happy to hear that's an option. This as given me more confidence for the trip. Thanks for sharing

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Posts: 147
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2017 12:39 am
Location: Bakersfield, California 93305
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Re: PDX to SEA trip report

Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:40 pm

Thanks. Great trip report.

Why didn't you stay at a hotel with L2 charging available?

Paul Gipe
2017 Bolt LT with DCFC, leased 11/09/17
2015 Nissan S with QC, leased, returned
2013 Chevy Volt Premium, used, sold
L2; ClipperCreek HCS-40; Jesla; JDapter Stub

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