Reader Question: Apartments and EVs?

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Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply!

Bob asks: You have never addressed the question of charging EVs for city apartment dwellers. Are we going to see extension cords (many) run from the building to cars parked on the street? Look at NYC. Cars parked on the street for blocks. What will the sidewalks look like. Would your extension cord even be there in the morning? What do you do if you lived on the 10th floor? As a side note, who would pay for it? You, landlord, building owner or would it be a group screw? Everybody in the building pays a fixed amount? Car or no car…

My reply: I have addressed, this actually! But let’s do it again – because it’s fun!

Of course, you’re absolutely correct that it would be cluster****. Which is ironic given that if EVs make any sense, they make it chiefly for those who do live in cities – whose driving is mostly short-distance.

But extension cords are also short distance. They don’t reach from the third or fourth (let alone 10th) floor to the street below. And even if they did, they don’t carry 240 volts – the high voltage needed for a “fast” charge. They carry 120V – which means plugging in for hours/overnight.

The slip-and-fall lawyers are going to have a field day with all the slipping, falling – and tripping.

But wait, there’s more. EVs don’t charge well when it’s cold outside. If it’s below freezing – and the EV hasn’t got an internal (built-in) battery warmer – which also consumes electricity – it can’t be charged.

Lithium-ion battery chemistry is a bitch!

EV advocates will argue that the problem will be solved by installing high-voltage “fast” chargers curbside, so that every parking spot – or most of them – becomes a charging spot.

But that is going to get into money – which seems to never be a concern when it comes to EVs, though at some point, the bill is going to have to be paid.

It also doesn’t address the problem every city has of their being not enough parking spots for all of the cars. With an IC car, you can drive around the block until you find a spot. With an EV running low on juice, if you can’t find a spot, you find yourself stuck.

There is another, related problem: Throughput. Even at a “fast” charge spot, an EV needs 30-45 minutes to recharge.

Meanwhile, other EVs wait.

Think of the conga lines that would form at gas stations if each car at each pump took 30-45 minutes to fill up. The 30-45 minute wait is a minimum which assumes you get to the “pump” first. If you are the second car in line, you must wait 30-45 minutes before you wait 30-45 minutes.

And so on.

A “fast” charge can easily become hours – 240v or not – if you can’t hook up to it.

The whole EV thing is baying-at-the-moon crazy. It is the forcing of a very round peg into an extremely square hole.

it would never be happening were it not for the manufactured “climate change” hysteria and stultifying ignorance of – or indifference toward – engineering and economic realities by Wishful Thinkers and virtue signalers.

Who, unfortunately, have the muscle of Uncle in their corner.

Got a question about cars – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

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  1. I seem to remember in a previous column reviewing an EV that there was a problem that our host had with recharging it from a home connection. Maybe it was related to the recharging voltage or current supply. Apparently, the on-board computer got pissed off about it.
    Suffice to say, a long extension cord, even if it’s comprised of copper conductors, will experience a voltage drop one end to the other depending on its wire gauge and length.
    Just another complication that apartment dwellers would have to deal with.

  2. I had a video come up to watch this morning of fan bois who loved Tesla cars. The deniers are just crazy and don’t want to admit it’s the best car you can buy. They never address any of the drawbacks of a car like that. They’re all so single-minded when it comes to a Tesla they can’t even consider the negatives. They’re convinced we’ll all be soon driving electric vehicles. To them it’s so obvious. Anyone who hasn’t drunk the cool-aid is simply stupid. It was an eye-opener. No critical thinking involved.


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