Keeping Warm!! - Renault Z.E. Forum
 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-18-2014, 09:30 AM Thread Starter
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Keeping Warm!!

Ok. So I have had my Kangoo two months now, and enjoying every mile (2000 to date- must slow that down a little!!!)
The biggest surprise is that my other half uses it more than me. (Largely because I pay the lechy bill and she saves at the gas station). However, I think that will change as the temperature drops. So how to keep warm in the winter months.

In retrospect, if I was ordering a Kangoo tomorrow, I would DEFINITELY spec the diesel heater - at 600 what a bargain. The solar gain through that massive windscreen is a real bonus and, of course, the plugged in pre-heat option works a treat for regular start times.

I asked the dealer if he could order the components as a dealer fit. His first response was that it would be expensive (four or five times the factory price), his second response was that it was a factory fit option only. I am not convinced and will pursue this further.

An alternative would be to fit an after market eberspacher or webasto air heater, but initial research suggests that these are quite pricey new and not that cheap secondhand (with attendant risks). So for now I have a big quilted coat hanging between the seats.

Has anyone had more luck?

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-19-2014, 11:17 AM
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RE: Keeping Warm!!

You've not really said if, or how, using the heater impacts your range. Set the heating modestly, direct it at your feet, and set the fan speed to its lowest setting. Such a setting in an EV is optimum to save energy. You may not be toasty like in an ICE, but you will not freeze and with such settings you will notice very little impact on range unless you are making several stops and short journeys (in which case just arrange to take some charge at one of them).
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-22-2014, 06:34 PM Thread Starter
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RE: Keeping Warm!!

OK, so your advice is pretty much exactly what I have been doing to date, and you are right in that it has not noticeably affected range. Equally, though, the temperatures have been between 7 and 13 c and with pre heat, a little sunshine through the glass and mostly short journeys, that has been fine.

What I have noticed is that the air blowing out of the vents is not what I would call hand warming. As a trial I turned the heat up to full yesterday and at a standstill the readout was saying 4 to 5kw of draw. Well, on 18 kw s of useable battery that's 22% of battery capacity or 11 miles of range (OK, so it was heating up the matrix, but on sub zero c days it would be working pretty hard to keep me and the dogs warm!!).

That sort of range loss on-top of cold battery losses could see me in sub 50 mile range territory. It is early days for me yet, but I am a little worried about keeping that huge windscreen demisted and icicle free, and I would like to able to warm the van when I'm away from the socket.

I have driven a horse and carriage and I know how cold it can be...we have moved on in transport terms and the spectre of EV drivers wearing ski clothing, or basically suffering, in order to preserve range is a backward step. This , however, causes conflicting interests on battery usage, given the limited capacity with all but the Tesla electric vehicle market. For me, the stored electric power seems ,in principle, to be for propulsion, and to that end I want to look elsewhere for the heat source.

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-22-2014, 06:52 PM
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RE: Keeping Warm!!

It's very problematic. A large vehicle can easily require 5kW to keep it warm n toasty in winter. But if the average power demand is 10kW and you've got a 40% efficient diesel pottering along the motorway, in effect you are far more efficient at burning fossil fuels in such a car than burning it at a power station and then shipping that electricity for an EV.

When you first turn on the heater, it will easily draw 5kW but it backs off quite quickly once the various bits are warmed up and you use a modest heat setting, and a steady trickle to the feet should give you just enough to keep the window clear too... if you are in the vehicle yourself! Yeah, breathing heavily or two-up and you need to get the window vents on, and that's virtually throwing good heat away. Keep your windows crystal-polished on the inside (the slightest dirt encourages condensation) and making sure the vehicle is heated before you use it any time, and things won't be too bad for you. Good luck!
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