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Thread: Car (or bike) Chat!

  1. #5561
    Join Date: Feb 2013

    Location: W Lothian

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    I'm Grant.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Macca View Post
    what's your source for that? Wholesale prices have been increasing I thought? Partly due to Ukraine partly due to the pound weakening against the dollar.

    According to this article https://www.theguardian.com/money/20...es-record-high it's the refineries not the retailers who are holding the price up.

    Welcome Break price isn't really indicative of anything, motorway fuel has always been a rip-off. No-one fills up on the motorway unless they have no option. It's a captive market. A burger costs 50% more there as well.
    something i read a few days ago that they had been dropping but prices keep increasing at pump. also a lot of stations are up for sale now or will be soon as the big combos want to diversify and holding on to too much of a falling market isnt wise and the land is valuable. the more evs the fewer pumps there will be, and of course price will increase again.

    a\s for motorway fuel; well when i was doing a long motorway run you'd use it and take the hit, but with so many apps and supermarkets now it can be worth the detour if you know its there, but most just want to be on their way
    Regards,
    Grant .... ؠ ......Don't be such a big girl's blouse

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  2. #5562
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 34,316
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by struth View Post
    something i read a few days ago that they had been dropping but prices keep increasing at pump. also a lot of stations are up for sale now or will be soon as the big combos want to diversify and holding on to too much of a falling market isnt wise and the land is valuable. the more evs the fewer pumps there will be, and of course price will increase again.
    the supermarkets will continue to price-war though and I suspect that is where most people fill up. They can take a lower margin since it isn't their core business, they want people to combine filling up with doing their shopping.
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  3. #5563
    Join Date: Nov 2011

    Location: Seaton, Devon, UK

    Posts: 11,196
    I'm Adrian.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dave2010 View Post
    Apart from using a low powered charger, it is possible to restrict the charging current of a Tesla M3 - though maybe not everyone knows how to do that.
    However it may not be that easy to manage - and I'm not sure what the lowest current is - probably 2 amps - which would correspond to about 0.5 kW. That's really not so useful to know though.
    I guess if one could be sure of getting spare UV generation of at least 2 amps for say 6 hours, the one could inject about 3kWh of energy into a T M3 for next to no cost. However that is really not so much as to be useful. The electricity companies are not completely dumb - the price differential for electricity taken from the grid, and electricity supplied to the grid - or alternatively electricity diverted to something useful by the user - is such that on the whole the company wins - unless active steps are taken to optimise usage. That usually means having some form of active monitoring of the PV or wind generated power, and cutting off the device consumption the moment that consumption exceeds local generation supply.
    I seem to remember that the lowest charge rate for a Tesla is 5amp, which is about 1.1Kw for single phase at 230v.

    We use our myEnergi Zappi charger to manage the charging level, setting it to the Full Eco setting meaning it only takes spare Solar power, in our case the Solar system batteries need to be fully charged first unless we force it to take power from the batteries. Once the Solar batteries are full and there is extra power available from the PVs above the use that the house is taking then the Tesla gets charged. We can also vary the % level of PV power and supplement this with Battery/Grid power in the Zappi settings, its quite clever, I haven't played around with this. I have also used the Tesla app to limit the amps that it draws for charging, by doing so it ensured that that solar system batteries got sufficiently charged during the day so we had enough power for the evening and the next morning to run the house.
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  4. #5564
    Join Date: Jun 2014

    Location: Chorley Lancs

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    I'm Steve.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AJSki2fly View Post


    Seems if prices keep rising at this rate, this is what we can expect to see by the end of the year, I have done some comparisons below so you can get a clear picture of what this actually means in costs. The possible future costs for 10K mile per year you can easily use to work out what you family may need to spend based on your total annual milage, so if you have two petrol cars and do 15K miles a year multiply the 10k cost by 1.5

    According to Government stats:

    03 Jan 2022 the average pump price of Unleaded Petrol was £1.4504/gall and Diesel £1.4885
    27 Jun 2022 the average pump price of Unleaded Petrol was £1.9093/gall and Diesel £1.9893

    This is a percentage rise over 6 months for petrol 32% and diesel 34% If that continues till the end of this year then we can expect to see petrol to rise to £2.5204/L and Diesel to £2.6259 This would make the average price for gallon of E10 unleaded £11.4421 and Diesel £11.9215

    Yes I know it sounds unbelievable but this is what some Fuel analysts in the market are strongly forecasting. For and average family car a tank is abut 65L and most people fill up with about 10L left in it, so a 55L fill up of petrol would cost £138.62 and for Diesel £144.42

    Assuming an average 40mpg for petrol this is 22p/mile and for 60mpg diesel 15p/mile, current costs
    Rising to petrol 29p/mile and for 60mpg diesel 20p/mile

    In comparison an EV even at 35p/kwh is 8.75p/mile (assuming 4 miles/kwh) - 39% the cost of petrol, and even if base electric prices rise in October to 50p/kwh then is will be 12.5p/mile - 43% the cost of petrol then.

    A 10K miles annual usage, EV is £875, and petrol £2200 at current prices, at inflated rates £1250 for the EV and £2900 for petrol.

    I have not taken into account that you can get electricity for EV charging at home at off peak rates at around 7.5p/kwh, so even if re-charging at home for 66% at this rate and 34% at public chargers you would spend £123.75 (6600miles/4mile/kwh*£0.075/kwh) and £433.50 (3400miles/4mile/kwh*£0.51/kwh) = £557.25 in total for the year.

    I hope this gives some insight and helps you who are thinking about how to manage this.
    That is a fairly comprehensive and detailed breakdown of running costs, both current and predicted, but I'd be interested in knowing how long (based on say, 10,000 miles pa), how long it would take for these savings to recoup the outlay difference of ev to comparable ice cars. Because it's the purchase price that's the deal breaker for many.
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  5. #5565
    Join Date: Feb 2010

    Location: Moved to frozen north, beyond Inverness

    Posts: 2,299
    I'm Dave.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AJSki2fly View Post
    I seem to remember that the lowest charge rate for a Tesla is 5amp, which is about 1.1Kw for single phase at 230v.

    We use our myEnergi Zappi charger to manage the charging level, setting it to the Full Eco setting meaning it only takes spare Solar power, in our case the Solar system batteries need to be fully charged first unless we force it to take power from the batteries. Once the Solar batteries are full and there is extra power available from the PVs above the use that the house is taking then the Tesla gets charged. We can also vary the % level of PV power and supplement this with Battery/Grid power in the Zappi settings, its quite clever, I haven't played around with this. I have also used the Tesla app to limit the amps that it draws for charging, by doing so it ensured that that solar system batteries got sufficiently charged during the day so we had enough power for the evening and the next morning to run the house.
    It sounds as though you have rather more than a simple system. We have solar panels - and we have experience now of a couple of systems - having done them on two houses. I have investigated batteries, but so far been unconvinced that they are financially worth while. Would be interested to know more about your system - and if you are also going to be adding in a wind turbine this sounds more complex than the systems which many others will have - certainly not people living in suburban semis or town houses. If the discussion here gets too complicated I'll go into PM mode.
    Dave

  6. #5566
    Join Date: Nov 2011

    Location: Seaton, Devon, UK

    Posts: 11,196
    I'm Adrian.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dave2010 View Post
    It sounds as though you have rather more than a simple system. We have solar panels - and we have experience now of a couple of systems - having done them on two houses. I have investigated batteries, but so far been unconvinced that they are financially worth while. Would be interested to know more about your system - and if you are also going to be adding in a wind turbine this sounds more complex than the systems which many others will have - certainly not people living in suburban semis or town houses. If the discussion here gets too complicated I'll go into PM mode.
    Hi Dave,

    To answer you will take a few words/paragraphs, so apologies if it is a bit long winded but a few brief sentences will fail to explain IMO and not be very worthwhile for you or anyone else for that matter.

    We moved to our bungalow in Jan 2021 and it is intended that this was our last house move having done 10 previously over 39 years, we did the bungalow up, March thru June 2021, it needed a complete heating system replacement. We bit the bullet, after much brain wringing we went for an Air Source Heat Pump(ASHP) and Solar Thermal(water), boy am I glad we did!. We were very lucky and managed after much government department chasing to get grants for both, so will end up paying for about 2/3 the cost, but we don't get it all back until after 7 years.

    We were toyed with the idea of a Solar PV system around July/Sep 2021 because a very good friend that worked in the Petro-Chem/Gas Industry warned us of the impending price rises and this was before the Ukraine impact, also via a relatives close friend, who worked for the Government, we knew that the Russian/Ukraine issue was seriously brewing and what impact it might have across EU. This knowledge pushed us to take the Solar and EV plunge earlier rather than later, we took the view that it would be best to get any benefit sooner rather than later as we are both in our early 60's, we completely realise that we might never see pay back in our investment in ASHP, Solar PV system and EV, but it is more about trying to insulate us from rising power costs over the next 20-25 years as much as possible.

    We originally were going to only put in Solar(10-12 panels), Inverter and EV charger, a pretty standard system, in late 2021 early 2022, and were planning to buy an EV 2-3 years down the road. We talked with several more knowledgable people who had over 10 years experience of Solar PV and the pitfalls and what to expect. The bungalow is intended to be our last house move having previously moved 10 times over 39 years, when we did the bungalow the existing Gas Heating system needed completely replacing, so we bit the bullet and after much brain wringing and went for an Air Source Heat pump, boy am I glad we did!.

    What became clear after Solar PV discussions and my own investigation and doing various estimates/speadsheets on PV production was that 12*390wh panels would supply the house with electric for about 6 months but outside that it would virtually do very little in terms of supporting the power needed for the ASHP, cooking and so on through the evenings and early morning. My installer and I looked at the EU database on Solar power for our area going back the last 5 years, and it was clear that by utilising batteries and increasing the Solar Array we could push the boundaries of the benefit we could achieve to minimise the amount of electricity we would need throughout the winter months. It is not an exact science although the data enables you to get to probably within 5-10% of what you can expect in savings.

    Our maximum electric daily usage in the dad of winter when is around 0C is 24-26Kwk/day. It is very clear that we would never generate that amount with only 8-10 hours of daylight, but on a reasonable day you can expect to generate a reasonable amount for about 5-8 hours. We determined that if we could generate and store 10-12kwh by sunset and store it that we would have enough power until the next day and start of generating PV feeding the house and extra going into the batteries.

    Initially we went for a very cost effective two Hybrid AC/DC inverters and two 7.5 Kwh batteries, the manufacturer assured us that the system would be work fine and was designed for what we wanted. It worked to an extent but was fraught with errors/faulting and we were unable to rely on it charging and discharging batteries when it should and not taking power form the grid, it was returned as unfit for purpose after 2 months. It was replaced with a single Hybrid AC/DC inverter and two 9.7kwh batteries from SolarEdge but at and additional cost of £5k just for kit, however they have a very good reputation and have been in Solar since around 2008. We also considered a Telsa Power wall which has 13.8Khw hours of storage but because it requires a separate PV AC inverter to feed the PV to the local home grid, it this meant that we would have been limited to less PV panels, because you have to limit the maximum exported to the grid as specified by the DNO(Western Power) for anything over 3.9Kwh, you can do this on most hybrid AC/DC inverters.

    So without going into all the calculations and spreadsheets, the bottom line is that we use 7500-8000kwh a year, so at an anticipated rate for electric in October 2022 of 48p/kwh our annual electric cost from the grid would be £3780-4032(inc vat). Based on our calculations and what we saw from December 2021 in terms of Solar generation, we anticipate in taking no more than 1500-2000Kwh from the grid(20%), mostly from mid Nov to Mid March, a cost of £756-1008(incl VAT). This actually ties in which what our supplier anticipates based on the monthly direct debit level they have set, we also sell our extra spare power to them, they have revised the DD over the past 6 month based on our usage, it is now £56/month, we are £124 in credit and for a year works out to £796, so perhaps our figures are pessimistic as they take into account the standing charge as well (£194/year).

    In answer to your "I have investigated batteries, but so far been unconvinced that they are financially worth while." we expect a yearly saving from October 2022 onwards of close to £3k/year, at that level the Solar PV, inverter and battery costs will have been covered in 6 years, originally we thought 10-12 years, but as I said earlier that is not the point for us. I believe batteries are worthwhile it enables you to store and use the excess power.

    With respect to installing a simple wind turbine like the AtlasX it is relatively straight forward and set to output 12-14DC as I understand it. It can directly feed the existing Hybrid AC/DC Inverter along with the Solar PVs, once the batteries are fully charged and the load from the house is less than the combined Solar and Wind Turbine generation it should just feed AC out to the grid, basically as it does already with the PV. Also the myEnergi Zappi charger should just see the Wind Turbine along with the PV so this would be seen as spare power to charge the car if needed.

    I hope this is of some use to you.

    Cheers

    Adrian
    Listening is the act of aural discrimination and dissemination of sound, and accepting you get it wrong sometimes.

    Analog Inputs:
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  7. #5567
    Join Date: Feb 2010

    Location: Moved to frozen north, beyond Inverness

    Posts: 2,299
    I'm Dave.

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    Thanks Adrian for detailed reply. One point to clarify - do your calculations include the cost of running a heat pump, or do you still have to change the heating?
    We have an aging oil boiler - like you we moved a few years ago into a bungalow - though we are a bit older. I have mixed feelings about whether I want to stay here or move again - but let's assume we'll stay.

    We put PV on this house, and also on the previous one when there was a FiT payback. I think we lost on the previous house - but it probably made it easier to sell. In theory PV is a benefit which should be taken into account in a sale, but the chances are that the installation costs will have to be written off. However nowadays an adequate PV installation can be done for around £6k, whereas our first one was around £14k.

    Your data re annual usage is high, unless that also includes heating. I've not checked recently - I could do - but my guess is we use about 3500kWh - roughly average for the size of house in electricity, but we also use oil which depending on multiple factors may be several thousand litres per year. We have underfloor heating which was a real pain as it was installed when the house was built, but we recently had new manifolds and a completely new control system put in, and now it seems to be very much better. What we now need to do is get a heat pump installation to replace the oil boiler - and we think that should work.

    Re the PV panels, there is hardly an FiT benefit on our installation - though we did get it done just before the deadline, so there is a very small amount paid back. However, to our surprise we did notice that the electricity bills went down - even over Christmas - when there was a lot of cooking using electricity. This was a surprise. I've not done detailed checks - but like you I reckon that there is significant benefit from solar energy from (say) March to October - and that's even up in these cold far northern parts.

    Based on your comments we may revisit battery storage - though I'm still not convinced. We use the power grid as our "battery", and just hope that we don't get clobbered too much because of the import/export price differentials.

    One other factor for batteries, which may vary from country to country, is the issue of whether they can be isolated from the grid, and run as an island. That could be useful if there are many power cuts, but there are technical issues. It's dangerous for power workers to have battery power connected to the grid if there's an outage, so the fail mode has to be either a complete shut off of any battery power in the case of power failuers, or some form of automated shut off, or a guaranteed disconnect from the mains for safety reasons. I'm not sure if any or all of the battery systems do automatic isolation in the case of failures.

    I've heard that Tesla batteries are quite good, but others may be better - though there are differences between the US and other markets. I don't have great faith in Tesla re customer service though - as my experience with the car is "so-so". As I wrote earlier, I'd rate it as crap/brilliant. When it's good it's very, very good, but otherwise - complete thumbs down.
    Dave

  8. #5568
    Join Date: Nov 2011

    Location: Seaton, Devon, UK

    Posts: 11,196
    I'm Adrian.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dave2010 View Post
    Thanks Adrian for detailed reply. One point to clarify - do your calculations include the cost of running a heat pump, or do you still have to change the heating?
    We have an aging oil boiler - like you we moved a few years ago into a bungalow - though we are a bit older. I have mixed feelings about whether I want to stay here or move again - but let's assume we'll stay.
    My figures are inclusive of running an ECODAN 8.9kw Air Source Heat pump, that is our total power usage for everything in the house, we do not have any gas usage and the connection has gone.

    Quote Originally Posted by dave2010 View Post
    Your data re annual usage is high, unless that also includes heating. I've not checked recently - I could do - but my guess is we use about 3500kWh -
    Yes, 3500 to 4000kwh is about our usage for heating, the rest is yearly cooking - induction hob an oven and microwave, kettle, 2 fridge/freezers, lights etc and a 500w hifi power amp(it all adds up), the water is heated from the ASHP in the winter as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by dave2010 View Post
    Re the PV panels, there is hardly an FiT benefit on our installation - though we did get it done just before the deadline, so there is a very small amount paid back. However, to our surprise we did notice that the electricity bills went down - even over Christmas - when there was a lot of cooking using electricity. This was a surprise. I've not done detailed checks - but like you I reckon that there is significant benefit from solar energy from (say) March to October - and that's even up in these cold far northern parts.
    With your current PV set up the FIT scheme may pay you more than it would if you were on Smart Export Guarantee(SEG). With SEG you sell your spare power back to any electricity supplier of your choice, so it can be different from your feed in grid supplier, this means you can choose the one that pays the most for your spare PV generated electricity. With this in mind you could increase the number of PVs on the roof, to max out as we have in conjunction with battery storage. Based on our electricity output to date we should generate 6500-7500kwh spare per year, for this we will get paid £232-262/annum (3.5p/kwh), you can get better from Octopus 5p/kwh), So this will further offset our total power bill for the year bringing it down to about £550. It may be a bit less depending on how many times we charge up the Tesla off go Solar PV but that is not going to be more than 1.3Mwh based on our mileage(about 8k/year) around £45 lost income.

    Quote Originally Posted by dave2010 View Post
    Based on your comments we may revisit battery storage - though I'm still not convinced. We use the power grid as our "battery", and just hope that we don't get clobbered too much because of the import/export price differentials.
    If your bungalow is similar to us a mid sized 3 bed and is well insulated then you really should consider an ASHP, but to maximise cost effectiveness in terms of electricity then batteries are a must IMO, don't take my word for it there are are experts out their with the same opinion, any power you generate is it is best to use it as much as possible yourself. Our system is a bit over the top in terms of generation but I wanted to have a god 25-35% leeway and to get as much as we can for as much of the year as we can.

    As I said all extra electric in day will run the ASHP and house in the evening and the early morning. Having said that it will be far more efficient that a gas or oil boiler, for 1kwh you put into a ASHP you get around 3kwh out, they are very efficient, a brand new gas boiler maximin efficiency is for 1kwh you get about 0.85kwh back and I think that an oil boiler is even less. As you already have underfloor heating you are in a perfect position ASHP as it acts as a thermal store as well and it is even more efficient than radiators, we have radiators as it was too costly to rip the floor up and install underfloor heating.

    Quote Originally Posted by dave2010 View Post
    One other factor for batteries, which may vary from country to country, is the issue of whether they can be isolated from the grid, and run as an island. That could be useful if there are many power cuts, but there are technical issues. It's dangerous for power workers to have battery power connected to the grid if there's an outage, so the fail mode has to be either a complete shut off of any battery power in the case of power failuers, or some form of automated shut off, or a guaranteed disconnect from the mains for safety reasons. I'm not sure if any or all of the battery systems do automatic isolation in the case of failures.
    This is not an issue with or without isolation from the grid, the batteries run on DC and are connected to the house consumer unit if the power goes off then the inverter powers off as it runs off the grid and this effectively isolates the batteries from the grid. No DNO (like Western Power) world allow a system to be installed that could feed back to the grid when there's was down.

    My supplier tells me that SolarEdge are soon to be bringing out a control box that will sense a grid outage and then will automatically isolate the whole house from the grid and allow the house to run off the batteries, I presume that will involve a 240AC back up PSU to keep the Inverter running until AC come from the batteries. Then when grid power returns it will switch back to normal operation.

    The bottom line really is whether you want to insulate your self from rising power bills or not and whether spending out more on it is worthwhile in your view. A Tesla Powerwall is £9k, you can get 10-15Kwh batteries for around £6-10K and you may need to increase the number of Solar panels to balance it in terms of generation and storage.
    Listening is the act of aural discrimination and dissemination of sound, and accepting you get it wrong sometimes.

    Analog Inputs:
    Pro-Ject Signature 10 TT & arm
    Benz Micro LP-S, Michel Cusis MC, Goldring 2500 and Ortofon Rondo Blue cartridges
    Hitachi FT5500 mk2 Tuner

    Digital:-
    Audiolab 8300CDQ CDP/DAC/pre-amp
    RaspberryPi/HifiBerry Digi
    Buffalo NAS Drive

    Amplification:-
    AudioValve Sunilda phono stage,
    Krell KSA-80 power amp

    Output:
    Wilson Benesch Vector speakers
    KLH Ultimate One Headphones

    Cables:
    Furutech AG-12-R4 High Performance Phono Cable
    QED Genesis Silver Spiral speaker leads, & links


    I think I am nearing audio nirvana, but don’t tell anyone.

  9. #5569
    Join Date: Feb 2013

    Location: W Lothian

    Posts: 89,996
    I'm Grant.

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    Regards,
    Grant .... ؠ ......Don't be such a big girl's blouse

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  10. #5570
    Join Date: Feb 2010

    Location: Moved to frozen north, beyond Inverness

    Posts: 2,299
    I'm Dave.

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    I missed this before - crazy! Did a test drive in a Tesla Model Y yesterday - really took the chance to try to discuss the problems with my Model 3. The Model Y is relatively huge - and feels more like a bus than a car. From a distance it looks very similar to a Model 3, but close up it's clearly bigger. Not sure that this is a good vehicle for UK roads. It's even slightly wider and longer than a Model 3 - which could cause some people problems with steering. It's likely that drivers will clip the kerbs on turns, and damage the wheels - apart from being potentially dangerous to pedestrians. So called kerb (curb) rash is also likely if trying to get past oncoming large vehicles such as lorries. UK roads are just not wide enough for cars this size.

    As for the claimed "self driving" package - which is "not yet approved" for UK roads - all I can say is that I sure hope they don't approve such self driving vehicles for a long while into the future, as my experiences with Tesla are that I would not trust the cars to go 20 feet under their own initiative, let alone do a 20 or 200 mile drive.
    Dave

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