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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, been driving my new 2019 Touring model for almost a month now and enjoying it very much.
We've had some cold weather here in CT lately and I've watched the EV range go down from 47 to the high 30's. I know that happens with these batteries, but I'm wondering what to expect over the winter until it warms up again in the Spring. Are there any owners out there in cold weather states that can tell me what the lowest EV range might be over the Winter?
Also, I've been running on battery most of the time, but yesterday morning I noticed the engine had started even though I was in Econ mode with a full charge. I don't think it was propelling the car because it was a low pitched sound, but wondering why it was running at all. First time that's ever happened, after 900 miles. Thanks for your help!
 

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My Volt just got 39 miles on a full charge, down from the EPA rated 53. Temps were in the mid-20s when my wife and I left for dinner and had dropped to 14 when we got home.

For your engine running, the car went into an Engine Maintenance Mode. This mode pumps the oil and coolant throughout the engine to ensure seals and pumps are kept lubricated. This is normal operations.
 

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Very normal behavior.
The ICE will sometimes run to help the on board heating and engine performance.
The ICE engine will need to occasionally turn on just to run and keep the internals working.

Cold weather complaints and battery range are super common but the biggest drain is the cabin heating.

Cabin heating draws a huge amount of battery power out of your drive.

Since I don't live in your type of weather - I am in Southern California where I still get 60 miles per charge even in winter, where I don't use the cabin heating.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you, both obermd and 4sallypat for your very useful answers. The Engine Maintenance Mode explanation sounds reasonable and I had heard that the heater is electric so that will certainly draw down any battery. I think I'll try preheating while its still plugged in. I was born in San Diego but grew up in CT so I know all about the nice weather you experience. BTW, just had my first gas fill up today after 957 miles...6.7 gallons gave me 142.8 MPGe, which is quite fantastic I'm thinking.
 

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Thank you, both obermd and 4sallypat for your very useful answers. The Engine Maintenance Mode explanation sounds reasonable and I had heard that the heater is electric so that will certainly draw down any battery. I think I'll try preheating while its still plugged in. I was born in San Diego but grew up in CT so I know all about the nice weather you experience. BTW, just had my first gas fill up today after 957 miles...6.7 gallons gave me 142.8 MPGe, which is quite fantastic I'm thinking.
Preheating while plugged in that makes the most sense to avoid draining the batteries.

Yes, the miles per "small 7 gallon tank" is sure amazing coupled with the EV charge.

We rarely use the fuel since our commutes are well within the EV range. I think it's been over 4 months ago we filled up about 5 gallons....:wink:
 

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I think I'll try preheating while its still plugged in.
So long as it's plugged into a 240V EVSE the car will draw power from the grid to preheat or precool the interior. If it's plugged into a 120V outlet the car will draw power from the battery for heating or cooling and then try to recharge from the grid.

I've heard that, like Tesla and Bolt, it's wise to keep Clarity plugged in during cold weather as it will maintain optimal battery temperature by drawing power from the grid. Can anyone verify?
 

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Hi there,

We are based near Ottawa, Canada...30 minutes north near Wakefield, QC...and we've had our Clarity since July 20, have put on 9200km and I've spent $82 on gas (4 fill-ups, the result of 2.5hr road trips to Montreal).

The cold weather has kicked in here, for sure. So, during summer and warm fall months, the highest range I got was 92km (sorry...we're in kms here!). At this time of year, I am averaging 55-65km. This morning it is reading "full" -- according to my juicebox charger app -- at 56km. Last night was a chilly -17C. I have been told it can go as low as 40km. I know...a far cry from 92km, but we are still able to run fully on electric (except for those road trips!) by planning and plugging in at charging stations. So, yes, the drop in range for your car sounds reasonable to me.

The issue with the ICE kicking in is interesting. I haven't experienced it, but my husband did a few weeks ago when he went to pick up our daughter late at night...only about 12km away (we live in the country, btw!). He said, like you, it was very strange. Battery was full, but the engine came on....and then went off later. I have no idea what this is but wonder if it's just the car "running" the engine because it hasn't been run for a while (oil circulation thing? have no idea!), or possibly related to cold temps? Though I doubt the latter...as last night was our coldest yet at -17C and I drove all the way home from the theatre (45km) on electric, even after setting the car to warm up (precondition) half an hour before the show ended (so nice to hop into a warm car, I have to say!).

Not sure if that is any help! :)
Alison
 

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Anything below 50F here in eastern Washington, (further north than CT), knocks my range down to 35- 40 miles. Lowest I have experienced is about 32 miles when it is in the teens. (In the summer here when it is above 80F I get well over 50 miles a charge). I park in an unheated garage and take short trips to town. I suspect at a higher speed I would improve range as I would be heating less per mile driven. This is my second winter with my Clarity and I now drive in hybrid mode at temperatures under 50F just to avoid plugging in as frequently. Also at cold temperatures I keep the cab at 65 and use the seat heater on low. Other than that, there is little you can do to compensate for low temperature battery performance.

Details:
- I have read that the heater can consumes about 4 Kw. So sitting in stopped traffic for 4 hours in freezing temperatures would use the total battery charge.
- Due to battery chemistry, cold temperatures reduce the effectiveness of charging and discharging. So regenerative breaking in cold temperatures is much less helpful. I have seen this myself as the first part of my drive is about 1/2 mile downhill. The increase in range in cold weather is about half of the same increase in hot weather over that 1/2 mile.
 

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We live in northeast Iowa

where it gets pretty chilly and the lowest range we had last winter was 29 miles on a full charge. The heater and electric seats do suck the energy.
 

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If you run HV mode whilst using the heater...you will notice much less impact on EV miles.

That will also use gasoline, though.



I guess the way to go is: if you're driving less than your EV range before you reach the next planned charging station, just use EV and accept the reduced range.


If you know you will be driving far enough to run your EV range to 0, hit HV mode once your state of charge reaches about 60-70% to get the engine going a bit and use its waste heat for cabin heating. And leave the seat heaters off while the heat air is on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hi Allison, belatedly thanking you for your useful reply. I did the temp and mileage conversions and hopefully my range won't go as low as up north, here in CT. Lately I'm seeing range estimates (which I've found to be pretty accurate) of around 36, but we have had days in the 30s and 20s F. It seems to me, based on Honda's 47 battery miles spec, that what we lose in the cold weather should be offset in the warmer weather (58 miles?), but it doesn't sound like this will happen, based on other comments I've read on this forum. So I'm guessing the 47 miles must be from a CA vehicle, lol. Still loving it though. Stay warm!
 

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Hi Everyone:
I had my 2019 Clarity for 6 months now, the highest range I got was 105.8 km, but with our somewhat chilly winter in Vancouver, I am only getting around 62 km. I was prepared that I am going to get much less range so I am not totally surprised with the battery performance. I plug it in at the gym every morning and I have installed a Chargepoint charger in my garage.
Since I drove off the dealer's lot on May 5th, I still have 2/3 tank left from my original fill up at the dealer and I have not opened the gas filler cap. The only longer trip I took was to Whistler which is about 120 km. There is one Level 2 charger station along the way but it was occupied when I got there.
Does anyone have tried the Honda Link app on your phone to preheat the car? Mine doesn't work, I haven't paid anything to subscribe to Honda Link, perhaps this is a feature that you have to pay to use it?
I am under the impression that there is a battery warmer that warms up the battery when plugged into a Level 2 charger, is this true?
Thank you for your advice in advance.
 

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We just got through a polar vortex with temperatures reaching -36C = ~ -33F. The lowest I saw the range was 39km = ~24 miles. That is with preconditioning the car before driving, but the engine usually came on shortly after leaving the garage anyways when I turned the defrost on. When I stopped I either plugged in to a 220V charger, or left the car pre-warm from the battery for the hour of two I was inside. I know it’s not a great use of battery, but I was concerned the car wouldn’t start when I got back in. Im assuming it keeps the battery warm, but I don’t know for sure. so far I’ve never had a problem with the car starting. I have a Canadian model so it has the battery warmer. Any idea if leaving the pre-warm on when it’s so cold is better for the battery than letting the car get cold?
 

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We just got through a polar vortex with temperatures reaching -36C = ~ -33F. The lowest I saw the range was 39km = ~24 miles. That is with preconditioning the car before driving, but the engine usually came on shortly after leaving the garage anyways when I turned the defrost on. When I stopped I either plugged in to a 220V charger, or left the car pre-warm from the battery for the hour of two I was inside. I know it’s not a great use of battery, but I was concerned the car wouldn’t start when I got back in. Im assuming it keeps the battery warm, but I don’t know for sure. so far I’ve never had a problem with the car starting. I have a Canadian model so it has the battery warmer. Any idea if leaving the pre-warm on when it’s so cold is better for the battery than letting the car get cold?
WOW - that is COLD!

Yes, I'd leave the charger connected at all times to keep the battery heater on.

I have always wondered by Honda did not offer this as an option for the folks that live on the other side of the Canadian border - namely the northern states ?
 
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