Category: Electric Vehicles

Photo: Espen Frithjofsen

The Norwegian/Swedish-based company Tibber has launched a whole new generation of electric vehicle home chargers. They did this together with their hardware partner Easee. The charger is developed to help reduce the costs of charging electric cars at home.

The charger will do so with the help of so called “smart charging technology”, which means that the charger lowers charging speed for small periods at a time, when the power grid is in an immediate need to reduce consumption. 

Picture: Tibber
Photo: Easee

The charger is also equipped with technology that charges your electric car when the price of electric power is low. If you smart charge with Tibber, they guarantee that you get a 20% lower charging bill in Norway and a 50% lower bill in Sweden.

The charger can charge on both 1 and 3 phase and supports charging up to 22 kW, depending on which installation you choose. It has a Type 2 standard charging connector.

Tibber also launched 2 other products

The heart rate monitor for your home

Photo: Tibber

This is a small box called Pulse, which is plugged into the new automatic flow meter (AMS) that all households in Norway and Sweeden is soon to have, giving you a constant overview of power consumption at home.

The purpose is to give the user an overview of which electric installations that uses power and how to reduce power consumption, in addition to informing you whether there is a power outage, or something goes wrong when you’re not at home.

Smart heat control with Tibber and Mill

Photo: mill

The third product launched was a collaboration with the Norwegian electrical radiator manufacturer Mill, where the radiator uses Tibber’s technology for automatic heat control. Tibber already offers this technology for controlling air-condition-systems.

The product considers weather forecasts, thermal load, and the price of electric power to determine the effect you need for heating the house to avoid wasting power. It should be so easy to use that you only need to choose the desired temperature at home in the app, and Tibber will fix the rest.

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There are a lot of standards for charging electric cars? Here is a simple overview of different types of charging cables and connectors.

Also read: How to charge an electric car

You can charge your car with a regular household plug from an outlet at home, or at work. This method is quite slowly at around 2.3 kW. If you have a 40-kWh battery, you can easily calculate that it will take around 14 hours to charge the battery to 80 percent. It is important to mention that to charge an electric car involves a high sustained load over time, and charging a car in a regular electrical outlet can be dangerous due to the danger of overload.

You can mount a wall box at home that makes the charging a lot faster and a lot safer, but it is only when you use a fast-charger that things really speeds up. A fast-charger can charge the battery to 80 percent in half an hour.

What confuses most people is that different electric cars, have different charging plugs. We will explain the difference between the most common charging plugs, but this is not a big deal. The car you buy is equipped with one of the standard charging plugs, and most fast-charging stations now have charging plugs to suit everyone.

Regular outlet (Schuko)

Most electric cars come with a cable for charging from the common electrical outlet as standard. This charging method is relatively slow – around 2.3 kW. It is also not intended to provide high current for a long time, and poor contact and dirt can lead to overload.

Type 1

Type 1

This is a type of charging that is not common at fast-charging stations. But many electric cars, including the Kia Soul, use type 1 charging in combination with CHAdeMO for fast charging from public outlets, or normal charging from a charging box at home. Type 1 plug can charge up to 19 kW and is not very fast.

Type 2

Type 2

Many electric cars are now supplied with the Type 2 cable and plug. It replaces charging from a regular outlet, if you have installed a charging box at home. Type 2 charging is also a common standard in many publicly available charging stations. Many quick-charging stations also have this plug as a supplement to the quick-charging plugs. It can charge up to 43 kW. Tesla, Renault ZOE and  Mercedes-Benz B-Class are among the car models that can use this standard.

CHAdeMO

CHAdeMO

CHAdeMO is originally a Japanese charging standard, which Peugeot, Citroen and Kia now use on their electric cars. It is used by Citroen C-Zero, Citroen Berlingo, Kia Soul, Nissan Leaf, Nissan e-NV200, Mitsubishi i-Miev, Peugeot Partner and Peugeot iOn. In addition, Tesla can use this standard with the help of a transition, even though the charging is slower than with Tesla’s own Super Charger. CHAdeMO can charge up to 63 kW.

Combo / CCS

Combo/CSS

This charging standard is developed by American and European car manufacturers and satisfies more users. When using a quick charger, the plug uses both ports. The one part (with three pins) communicates with the car while the other transports the power. Combo / CCS is currently used by the BMW I3, Hyundai Ioniq, Opel Ampera-e, VW e-Golf and VW e-UP.  There are two variants of the CCS. One is based on SAEJ1772 socket interface (equivalent to IEC Type 1 socket) and the other based on IEC Type 2 socket interface. They are called Combo 1 and Combo 2 respectively. The former is more commonly used in EVs from the U.S. while the latter is more so among EVs from European countries. This charging method theoretically can provide 100 kW, but in real life it delivers about 50 kW on public chargers.

Source: Elbil.no  EMSD  NAF

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All you need to charge your electric car, is an electric outlet at home or at work. In addition, more and more quick chargers provide a safety net for those who need fast power.

Also read: Electric car charging standards   

Also Read: Check this if you buy a used electric car

There are several possibilities for charging an electric car outside the home, or when traveling. Either AC charging points for slow charging or DC fast charging points.

When buying an electric car, it is usually supplied with charging cable for AC charging, trough a normal electric household outlet. DC fast charging stations are fitted with a charging cable that you connect to your car to charge it. When charging at home, a charging point with a dedicated power circuit should be mounted. Let’s look at the most common ways to charge your car.

Charging station at home

For charging at home, the safest and best solution is to install your own home charger. Unlike plugging into a wall outlet, the home charger is a much safer solution that also lets you charge with more power. The charging station has a connector that is dimensioned to deliver high power over time, and it has built-in security features that handles all the risks that can occur when charging an electric car or a plug-in hybrid. A charging station is a safe investment that can be used for many years to come, even though the car is being replaced.

Charging trough a regular electrical outlet

Charging your car trough a normal outlet with the Mode2 cable that follows the car, is to be considered as an emergency solution, and is only to be used when other chargers for electric cars are not found nearby. Charging an electric car involves a high sustained load over time, and charging in a regular electrical outlet can be dangerous due to the danger of overload.

Charging stations in apartment blocks

In an apartment block you cannot usually just put up a charging station in the shared garage on your own. In most cases, it makes sense to use an advisor who has a good knowledge of electric car charging, to prepare a development plan for building charging stations. It is important that the plan is prepared by someone who has both solid electro-technical knowledge, and good knowledge of electric car charging. The plan must be so comprehensive that it also says something about any future expansion of the electric intake, in connection with the establishment of load management, and administration systems, although this is not relevant at the time.

Charging at work

More and more employers offer charging to employees and guests. High quality charging stations, and non normal electric outlets should be installed. It may be wise to think about how the charging system can expand as demand increases, so the investment in facilitating charging is long-term.

Fast charging

For long trips you sometimes need fast charging to reach the destination in a reasonable time. You can use fast-charging stations if your car supports this option. fast charging is the electric car’s response to gas stations. Here the battery on a regular electric car can be filled up to 80 percent of its total capacity in half an hour in the summer time (it takes longer when it’s cold outside). The fast-charging stations are delivering from 50 kW up to 350 KW depending on the type of charger and how much your car is dimensioned to handle.

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The battery is not what you should worry the most about.

The batteries will most probably outlive the rest of the car. There are a few percent reduction in the capacity during the first 80.000 kilometers, or 50.000 miles, and then the reduction stops.

If you need a car, a used electric car might be a smart choice. After all, it is less likely that something would go wrong with such a car. There is no oil to be replaced, no timing chain that can break or gasoline filters that can get stuck.

Nevertheless, it may seem a bit unsafe, since you cannot be completely sure of how the battery has been treated, and how the battery condition is.

Don’t worry

This is probably nothing to worry about. Electric car batteries are generally very good, and many cars still has the new car warranty. Some car manufacturers provide eight years of warranty on their batteries. This proves that the manufacturers really believe in their product.

This might not have to be the same for other parts of the car.

Wear parts like suspension, brakes and trailing arms, are common to fossil cars as well as electric cars.

No big dangers

Primarily; When it comes to electric cars, They are probably so new that they have a service history. Check that previous owners have followed the service intervals. Beyond this, there is no big danger of buying used electric cars.

The most important thing is to follow the same checklists you do with regular cars. Check for rust, mechanical damage and more.

As with all cars, be sure to take the car out for a test-drive, to check that the car is running properly. It may reveal thing such as scratch-sounds in brakes and other sounds that should not be there.

Dealerships are the safest

It is safer to buy an electric car through a dealership, since they provide you with a condition reports and warranty’s. If you buy a car privat, it may be perceived as more unsafe, since you may not get a condition report or a warranty.

The turnover time for used electric cars is short, and there is often “the seller’s market”. Therefore, it may be difficult to require the same quality and warraty’s from a private seller.

Monday Cars

Like any other car you may risk getting a “Monday car”. And if there is anything in the battery that is breaking, it’s not a question of buying a new battery, but replacing single cells in it.

Electric cars are heavier than the fossil cars. Nevertheless, there are not any connection between this and special wear and tear.

There are a lot of questions about the purchase of used electric cars and charging in general. It can be perceived as complicated with charging apps, charging chips, and more. This may be confusing and, make it a little less attempting to buy electric cars.

Especially in the phase before buying a electric car, whether it’s a used one or new one , there’s a lot to get into. It’s something very different from what’s people are used to. But it doesen’t take long to get used to it.

It is also important to check if the car you are considering can be fast charged. Several electric cars do not have the opportunity for this. Examples are Mercedes-Benz B-class, Renault Kangoo and some others.

Check this

Check the paint, rust and any collision damage. If the car has been previously damaged, ask for documentation of this and the corrections.

Check for rust on all part of the car, not only the parts you can see easily. Check  that all the outside parts are completely. Also check tires for uneven or irregular wear

Test the brakes several times during test-driving, and check that the car does not pull to one of the sides. Check that the car is steady.

Listen for noise from the powertrain. Check that the air conditioner is working. Check that all switches and buttons work.

Important: Rust and uneven wear on brake discs and pads is a common problem on electric cars. This is because the breaks are not used much due to regenerating. You should check this carefully, so you don’t end up paying for a complete set of new brakes on the car.

Battery

Check that the battery is mentioned in the warranty terms. For example, the battery warranty on early versions of Nissan Leaf only covered defects for five years. They gave no guarantee of capacity, but this should be changed afterwards. However, it is advisable to clarify, especially if it is a used imported car.

If you buy a car through a dealership, make sure you clarify this, and check if they can give you a status report on the battery.

Is your home ready for an electric car?

There is not much use in owning an electric car if you do not have the option to charge it. This should be solved before you buy a electric car.

Do you have access to electric power where the car is going to be parked? In that case, make sure that it is a suitable circuit. An old cicuit divided by multiple loads can quickly be overloaded by an electric car. Charging an electric car involves a high sustained load, and charging in a regular electrical outlet is considered an emergency solution.

If you need an extension cord to reach the wall outlet, you simply do not have a suitable solution. Common extension cables are not designed for such load.

The best solution is to mount a dedicated circuit for your charging point in your parking lot. Then you can install a suitable charger here, such as a charging station with a wired cable.

If you set up your own circuit for electric cars, you will also get a proper installation with a type of earth fault protection device suitable for electric cars.

Source: NAF TU.no

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Unrealistic

The EU’s plans for the conversion to emission-free vehicles are unrealistic. This according to the automotive industry’s European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (Acea).

The statement was made after the European Parliament’s Committee on the Environment proposed reducing emissions from passenger cars and vans by at least 45 percent by 2030.

The extremely strict reductions that have been decided are completely unrealistic, as they would require a sudden shift to electric vehicles. The conditions for this seismic shift do not exist, and customers are not yet ready to switch to full-electric vehicles, says Acea’s Secretary General Erik Jonnaert.

At the same time, several of the member companies, including BMW, Volkswagen and Volvo, are preparing for the future by developing new electric car models.

Erik Jonnaert has not missed out on this:

We are determined to work for emissions-free transport, but that change must be done at a manageable rate.

Market and demand tells a different story

The developments in the passenger car market in several countries speak against Acea’s analysis, who claims that people are not yet ready. The economic benefits for electric car owners in Norway, and the introduction of the bonus system in Sweden shows that it is rather a cost issue.

The Swedish industry organization, Power Circle has certainly reduced its forecast for the number of rechargeable cars on the country’s roads at the end of the year, but this is largely because manufacturers cannot meet the demand for electric cars.

At the same time, another bottleneck in production – the availability of batteries – seems to be less of a problem for European car manufacturers, as there are plans for several major battery plants in Europe.

Source: Elbilen i Sverige

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It is completely wrong to claim that emissions from production of diesel cars are just as big as in the production of electric cars. This is according to the Norwegian web site, Faktisk.no

There has been a lot of discussions about the pollution from so called zero-emissions cars, or electric cars. But are they as clean as the environmental movement claims? In this article we are going to concentrate on the emissions during production of the cars.

Tesla’s Gigafactory that is going to produce batteries to the Model 3, will be powered by renewable energy. This will probably give a smaller carbon footprint than the rest of the Tesla battery production.

Largest production emissions from electric cars

The claim is about what kind of emissions that occurs from the production of the cars. How large the emissions are during the use of the car, or how  large the emissions are during the whole lifecycle of the car is not mentioned.

The ideal organization The International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) did in 2018 publish a knowledge summary that is based on eleven life-cycle analyzes of electric cars, fossil cars and lithium-ion-batteries publicized between 2011 and 2017.

In the table below ICCT do compere the life-cycle emissions of an average European car. The most CO2-effectiv fossil car that is available in Europe, a Peugeot 208 1,6 BlueHDi Active, and an electric car based on the 2017-modell of the Nissan Leaf with a battery pack of 30-kWh

As shown in the table, production emissions are larger for the electric car than for fossil cars. However, the electric car has a lower emission in total. The International Council on Clean Transport

The energy mix has a lot to say in how environmental friendly a car is. Because of this there has been done different calculations for the electric car based on the average energy mix in EU, France Deutschland, Norway and Great Britain

Battery production needs a lot of energy

As shown in the table, the electric car is generally the best in all comparisons, except when comparing the most environmentally friendly conventional car to an electric car running on German power.

What is relevant to this fact check however, is how the electric car scores if we only compare CO2 emissions from the manufacturing process. Here we can see that both the average fossil car, and the most energy efficient fossil car makes it far better than the electric car.

The report states:

Manufacturing of electric cars requires more energy, and leads to higher emissions than conventional cars, due to electric car batteries. Production of lithium-ion requires the extraction of rare metals and is energy-intensive due to the heat and sterile conditions required.

However, it is also pointed out that it is likely that battery production will be significantly greener in the future:

Emissions from battery production will probably fall significantly over the next decades, especially with the use of cleaner electricity through the production phase.

The authorities in New Zealand have also summarized the results from several lifecycles analyzes. They draw similar conclusions as ICCT

Electric cars have the lowest emissions overall, but have higher emissions in the production phase, as the table below also shows:

Source: Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority in New Zealand.

All cars pollute

It is also worth mentioning that all car types lead to significant CO2 emissions. Therefore, it is wrong to mention electric cars as zero-emission cars, as they often are described in the environmental debate.

The electric cars has higher emissions before they start driving according to scientist

Fakta.no has previously factually checked a claim that says that electric cars have small, if any, environmental benefits compared to fossil cars. This claim is completely wrong. In connection with the fact check, they interviewed a researcher at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Linda Ager-Wick Ellingsen who is an expert in lifecycle analyzes. She explained that electric cars have big environmental advantages in Norway, compared to fossil cars.

However, Ellingsen was aware that the electric cars have higher emissions than fossil cars during the production phase:

Before the electric cars start to run, they have higher greenhouse gas emissions than gasoline cars, because the batteries are energy-intensive to produce. But they are more energy efficient to run and can be recharged with renewable energy. Therefore, they make up for higher production emissions throughout the life cycle. Ellingsen said to Faktisk.no in January.

Highest total emissions for fossil cars

Although production emissions for electric cars are higher than on fossil cars, it is wrong to argue that the car don’t have any environmental gain. According to the ICCT report, an average electric car produces 50 percent less CO2 when summarizing the production and usage phase after 150,000 kilometers traveled.

According to the report, the electric vehicle’s higher production output is on average “repaid” after two years of driving on a common European electricity mix. In Norway it will be repaid even faster because they have a very clean power production.

Source: Faktisk.no

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A new survey shows that the rapid transition from fossil cars to electric cars, can have a negative impact on the jobs in the automotive industry. The focus on reaching zero emissions can therefore lead to serious structural problems.

In connection with the EU presenting new goals for CO2 emissions after 2020, the European Commission has published a business review report that reviews how the transition to electric cars will affect employment among car companies. It certainly recognizes that the production of electric vehicles is less labor-intensive,  but according to some experts, the Commission has underestimated how big the impact on employment will be.

According to a new report from FTI Consulting, the transition can lead to serious consequences for the entire automotive industry. Europe’s car dealerships will produce 38 percent fewer parts and components for electric cars. This can be compared with a loss of 17 percent for the car companies.

The batteries will account for 35-50 percent of the total cost of an electric car in the future, and it is still uncertain whether these batteries will be produced within the EU or if they will be imported. In recent times, the value of the car companies is significantly lowered, which will have a significant impact on the jobs.

Car manufacturers are keen to move as fast as they can against zero-emission vehicles. But the entire European car supply chain must be transformed at a manageable rate. It must protect employment and long-term sustainability for the sector. This report shows that excessive CO2 goals and unrealistic sales quotas for battery-powered vehicles can lead to serious structural problems throughout the EU, ACEA’s Secretary General, Erik Jonnaert says.

Today, the automotive industry accounts for 11 percent of total employment in the EU. In countries such as the Czech Republic, Germany, Italy and Slovakia, the figure is above 20 percent. A rapid transition to electric cars will therefore be hard against these countries.

The European Parliament’s Environment Committee will vote for CO2 targets after 2020 at the beginning of October.

Source: nyteknik.se

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Electric car batteries are being recycled

As written in an earlier article, the number of electric cars has increased dramatically in recent years. There are now more than 4 million electric cars in the world. This is 1 million more than last year. Electric car number 5 million is estimated to be sold during March 2019.  The increase in the number of electric, cars has led to a discussion in what will happen to all the used electric car batteries when the cars are finally scrapped.

Will there be piles of used toxic batteries lying around, or will there be solutions to the battery problem?

No. There is no reason to fear piles of toxic batteries.

There is a growing number of recycling facility’s being established for the recycling of used electric car batteries. This is a recourse, and it is possible to make good money on it.

How do they do it?

When the time comes, and the used lithium-ion battery is no longer usable, a recycling facility will take care of it. There are two ways to do this:

If the batterys is completely without power, they are shredded at once so that the metal components, like steel and copper, can be easily dismantled and separated.

If there are any traces of electric energy in them, they are frozen in liquid nitrogen and smashed to frozen bits. The batteries have no chance to react because of the liquid nitrogen, so the smashing Is completely safe. After this procedure the metals are separated out for reuse.

It is important to menton that an electric car battery can still be used for other purposes after its life in the electric car ends. Usually at this, point the battery still have around 70-80 percent of its capacity left. So, before they are sent off to a recycling center they can be used as batteries in solar systems, a power wall, or as a power equalizer in the power grid.

You can watch the film in the start of the article from Batteriretur to learn more about the recycling process.

Allso read: What happens to old electric car batteries?

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In the United States, some mechanics have started to use Tesla batteries and engine systems in ways Musk had hardly anticipated.

The mechanics provide fossil-driven cars with proven, efficient engines – such as the Audi S5 – with the quiet and power-consuming parts of the Tesla S P85. This means a complete conversion of a petrol-driven car to an electric car.

This type of cars was featured during the Supercharged Sunday event in New York in early August.

One of the remodeled cars that attracted the most attention was just an Audi S5, rebuilt by Samuel Polyak. The rebuild has taken him six months, including the assembly of 3 of Tesla’s lithium-ion batteries in front, and the remaining 13 batteries in the back of the car.

Samuel Polyak is a mechanic in his own company. Rebuilding electric versions of fossil-powered cars – such as the Mazda MX3 from the 1990s has been a great part of his life.

“It’s about time that we all switch to electric”, as it appears on Polykup’s website.

“At Polykup we transform yesterday’s cars with internal combustion engines to tomorrows’ electric-driven. All combustion engine components are removed, and replaced with electrical components according to customer requirements.“

In the video you can see Samuel Polyak show us all the technical details and challenges of rebuilding an Audi S5 to a camouflage Tesla.

Source: TU.no

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