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Monthly Archives: August 2018

Electric Bike Battery

Keep the battery clean and dry

Even though these batteries are designed to accept a small amount of light rain, it is usually advisable to keep them clean and dry whenever possible. The actual contacts on the battery must be kept dry to avoid issues with corrosion or oxidation which in the long-term will weaken its power and efficiency. It is practical to check the contacts on a monthly basis. On seeing the first signs of corrosion, it is possible to use an emery cloth to give a proper clean.

Maintain the cool temperature of the battery

The battery cells are less effective at holding its charge in environments that are very warm. This means that in the hot weather the battery will start to lose its power at a faster rate. This has the downside of needing to recharge the battery at more regular intervals. The lithium power is able to extend the travel distance by a significant margin if kept and stored in cold conditions.

Store the electric bike in the correct manner

If you are planning to leave the electric bike inactive for several months it is essential that it is stored in the correct manner. For the best results it benefits to leave the battery with at least 80% charge which is useful for slowing the capacity in which the power is discharged. Try to store the bike in an environment that is relevantly cool and without direct sunlight. Additionally, for long-term storage it benefits to give the battery a charge once every 5 to 10 weeks.

Save Money and Energy With the New Plug-in Electric Hybrid Car

In addition to reducing energy cost, V2G technology will allow consumers to be able to sell back energy to the utility during the hot summer months when energy demand is the highest. Hybrid vehicle owners may sell energy at the price threshold they select. When the price reaches this point, the utility will automatically take energy from the vehicle. The owner will have enough energy left over for the drive home. Payment to the vehicle’s owner can be made in the form of earned credits from the amount of energy used by the utility toward their monthly energy bill.

V2G technology can increase the availability of renewable energy used during peak energy hours. Plug-in electric hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) may charge their batteries at night when energy is inexpensive and is generated with a larger percentage of renewable resources. While electrical utilities usually have to buy power from expensive, less efficient, fossil fuel power generating sources during the day or times of maximum demand. But with PHEVs, utilities may purchase the renewable energy stored in the vehicle batteries.

PG&E demonstrated the first-ever utility Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) technology at Silicon Valley Leadership Group Alternative Energy Solutions Summit in California. The PHEV, a converted Toyota Prius, featured a 180 pound lithium battery that takes up the bottom of a back trunk where a tire would go. The vehicle produces about 9 kilowatts of electricity while the average house uses about 2.5 kilowatts of electricity on hour.

The PHEVs charge by plugging into a three-prong 110- to 120-volt outlet. Flipping a switch sends the charge to the home from the car, if the home needs energy during a blackout or high energy consumption days.

For the demonstration, the Prius ran several lights and appliances after reversing the flow of energy from the outlet to the vehicle.

The plug-ins, like the traditional hybrid, have both electric motors and batteries as well as a gasoline engine which turns on when the car runs about 20 to 25 miles per hour.

About Energy Costs of Driving Electric Cars

Petroleum prices have jumped during the last year and everybody is feeling the pain at the pump. Not a single soul is concerned about filling up the batteries of his next electric car with electricity. After all, you just plug the car into the next receptacle and there seem to be no appreciable costs.

Joe owns a Corvette, a high performance car manufactured by General Motors, which according to the car manufacturer drives 25 miles per gallon.

Joe’s monthly commute is 1000 miles, he drives very carefully, and actually achieves 25 MPG on his daily trip going to work and running errands. At $4.00 per gallon at the pump he is paying $160 for gasoline every month.

Joe is thinking about buying the Tesla, an electric sports car. He tried to find the cost of electricity for driving this car. He could not find any data anywhere. Joe knows that he must explain to his wife why he needs to save energy and money before buying the Tesla, a new, very fast electric sports car.

The Tesla will accelerate faster than his Corvette. There is no doubt that an electric vehicle can have a faster acceleration than a gasoline car. Electric motors and liquid fuel engines are just two different devices converting electric energy or petroleum fuel energy into mechanical energy. Electric motors can generate much higher torque at the wheels at much lower turning speeds.

In comparison, electric motors will have several shortcomings, too. They certainly will emit more pollutants and more carbon dioxide as long as coal is used for producing electric power. Overall energy efficiency of the electric car, from power plant to the road, is still worse than that of a modern automobile propelled by an advanced combustion engine.

The biggest drawback of electric cars is the small number of miles they can drive after a complete recharge. Additionally, the charging of an empty electric battery will take forever, high performance batteries are expensive, and will only have a limited life expectancy.

What about energy costs for driving an electric car compared to a gasoline powered car? Both vehicles will have to store energy. The electric car stores electric energy in its battery, the combustion engine powered car stores energy in the form of gasoline or diesel fuel in its fuel tank.

Now let us take a comparative look at the cost of storing and paying for enough electric energy or liquid fuel energy to drive 100 miles. Let us assume that both cars will have the same power requirements to drive 100 miles. In this respect the match-up between Tesla and Corvette is perfect. But how do we compare prices at the gas station with utility costs at the receptacle?

Energy contained in gasoline can be converted into mechanical energy only at the limited energy conversion efficiency of a typical heat engine. The Corvette engine will have an energy conversion efficiency of about 35%. (Fuel fired engines may eventually reach 50% peak energy conversion efficiency after decades of future advancements). Conversion efficiency of electric power from the receptacle into stored energy first and into mechanical energy later is much higher at about 85%.

The energy content of gasoline is 131 MJ/gallon (megajoule per gallon). For driving 100 miles the Corvette will burn four gallons of gasoline or 524 MJ/100 miles. Only 35% of the energy in gasoline or 183 MJ will be used to propel the Corvette. This is the mechanical energy transmitted to the rear wheels of the Corvette. Virtually the same amount of energy must be transferred to the wheels of the electric car, the Tesla. Both cars are very similar in size and driving characteristics.

However, the Tesla has to take a little more energy from the receptacle because the charging, storing, and discharging of electricity in the battery experiences energy losses. These losses are about 15% of the electric energy taken from the receptacle and will not be available at the wheels. The Tesla owner will, therefore, pay 1.15 times as much to get the same energy to the wheels as the Corvette or 211 MJ per 100 miles. Electric energy is priced in the form of dollar per kilowatt hour or $/kWh. The average price of electricity in the US is $0.09/kWh. The factor for converting energy measured in MJ to energy measured in kWh is 0.2778 kWh/MJ.

Importance of Brake Fluid

The fluid needs to be checked often because of the ability it has to absorb moisture. Excess moisture and alien liquid deteriorates the brake fluid by corroding it. Excess moisture can come from the atmosphere. The liquid that gets drawn into the fluid will also affect the boiling point which is vital for proper braking. Water boils at 100 degrees Celsius whereas clean fluid boils at 230 degrees Celsius. Vaporisation needs to be avoided in the hydraulic system as it is compressible therefore affecting the car’s ability to stop.

At times, the fluid can also contain copper. Copper is likely to release patina, which is a corrosive substance that eats away at metal. Mechanics can test if there is copper in the pipes by means of an electronic tester.

Brake fluid must have a low viscosity to flow quickly through the hydraulic system as the driver applies the pedal. In other words, it has to be thin enough to travel quickly throughout the hydraulic system as opposed to oil which is too thick. If it gets thick, the driver will notice this because of the delay in reaction time of the braking system. The colour of the liquid can also determine if you need to change the fluid. If it is darker in colour then it needs to be replaced immediately as there is a high level of contamination.

Brake fluid protects the linings of the metallic parts as well as the valves, callipers and cylinders. It also protects the metallic components from corroding. It needs to be replaced at least once every couple of years. Replacing it requires the mechanic to bleed the system. Bleeding it involves the pipe to be removed from the rest of the system. The brake pedal will need to be constantly applied to get all that liquid out.