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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Everyone, new Clarity owner here from San Jose, CA. Just wanted to drop a hello that I'll be taking delivery next week on a secondhand 2018 Gray Clarity with black interior and 15k miles on the odometer! It was a very sudden purchase as I've been on the fence for several months regarding taking on car payments again but Carvana just made it WAY too easy. They must have known that I had an itch to get out of my current clunker with 200k+ miles on it.

Knowing that the world is moving towards electrification, I had also been researching hybrids and EVs for the last 3-6 months and I had my sights set on a new 2019 Accord Hybrid (with the same 2-motor hybrid setup). It checked a lot of boxes (size, style, technology, MPG) but a standard hybrid at premium "new car price" just felt like more of the same of what I've had up until now. On the other extreme I still feel like moving to Tesla was 1) financially too daunting but 2) too MUCH of a departure from what I've had previously and the range anxiety just wasn't something I was prepared to deal with.

The Clarity checks a bunch of boxes for me in safely moving me into the EV game and the used car value of the touring trim made it much easier to get into it. I'm not bothered by the lack of a volume knob.

For what it's worth, my work commute is 25 miles round trip. My partner's parents is 100 miles round trip (2-3 times a weekend) and my folks live 240 miles one-way, but only 4-6 times a year. No mountains, always warm.

In my 20's I was a typical Import car guy on the forums. I'm coming from:

  • Honda Civic Si (ephatch)
  • Honda S2000 (S2KI)
  • Honda Element (Element Owners Club)
  • Subaru Legacy GT (NASIOC,LegacyGT forum)
  • Acura Integra (TeamIntegra, HondaTech)
  • Acura TSX (Acurazine, TSXClub)

So while I'm not new to cars and forums, I have to admit there's so much to learn in terms of EV ownership/charge etiquette; but I'm excited and looking forward to getting into something a little more ecologically and economically focused. For some reason, horsepower, RWD, AWD, and exhaust noise just doesn't appeal to me as much as getting places as efficiently as possible anymore. Call it age, call it frugality - but I'm feeling the Clarity.

So far, I've downloaded the following apps:
  • PlugShare
  • ChargePoint
  • EVgo
  • Blink
  • HondaLink
  • ChargeHub
  • ...any other recommendations?

...and am seeing what my options are with the level 2 chargers/seeing where all the nearby chargers are.

Hoping to have some minor mods done windows tinted, maybe some paint protection film, but otherwise going to keep it super stock and just drive it forever.

Not sure if there are "meets" but would love to hang out with anyone nearby, Cheers.
 

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Welcome to Clarity Forum !

Congrats on your new purchase, I'm sure you'll really like your new/used Clarity.

There are many great threads on this forum for you, read as much as you can & ask questions about whatever you're interested in.



Rob43 :)
 

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Congratulations, in advance. Unless you would rather not if you don't mind posting what price you paid including shipping as I'm sure there are others considering buying a used Clarity. Current owners will also be interested in what used Claritys are going for. In theory buying used you can still benefit from the tax credit(s) if the seller doesn't try and keep all of it for themselves, assuming they were able to take the credit, which you will never know.

For the 100 mile round trip did you mean 2-3 times per week? Will you be able to charge at your parents and/or your partner's parents houses? Not just for the return trip but while you are there, having some EV range to drive around with will be more enjoyable. At their houses you might be parking outdoors and using an extension cord. The manual says not to use extension cords, but most of us believe that when there is no other choice that a high quality extension cord is okay when used correctly and with caution, i.e. use 12 gauge for up to X feet, beyond that distance use 10 gauge. I'm not going to state distances you will need to decide that on your own after doing research, but when in doubt go with the most conservative. Also with rare exception you will want to make sure to plug into an outlet that has no other devices running on that circuit while you are charging. They will likely not know for sure what is on the circuit, and the label on the panel won't tell the whole story. As a return favor for letting you charge at their house you could offer to create a circuit map of their entire house, which most people don't have. Using the tried and true method of plugging a lamp or radio into outlets and confirming which circuit breaker turns them off. And making sure what lights are on the circuits as well since lights and outlets are often combined on the same circuit. There will often be surprises, i.e. an outlet or light in a different room that you would have never guessed was on the same circuit. Besides helping you the circuit map will benefit them on future electrical projects or repairs.

As for the drives to their homes, especially the 500 mile round trip, the generally recommended strategy is to start from home with a full charge but immediately start out in HV and stay in HV for the entire trip. The reasons you will learn later, but basically on long trips you want to keep the battery as full as possible and don't let EV range get anywhere near 0 during the trip. This will benefit the HV portion of the trip, and also give you plenty of EV range for driving around town at the destination.

Speaking of destination, you sound like you might be doing what is sometimes called "opportunity charging" meaning you don't really need to charge since it's a PHEV, but if you come across an available charge station (especially a free one) you might charge up. Tesla has a whole lot of what are called Destination Charging locations, where they provide the charging station but the business owner pays for installation and electricity. This is different than the Tesla Supercharger network. The Destination stations often have both a Tesla charger and a J1772 charger which you can use on your Clarity. In case it only has a Tesla charger, or if the J1772 chargers are occupied, there are adapters that let you plug the Tesla charger into your Clarity. The adapter to do this is just over $200, even charging for free it is unlikely you will pay back the price of the adapter, but free charging does help subsidize the "hobby" of opportunity charging. I wouldn't normally mention that to a new owner as most people will be mainly trying to figure out how to actually drive the car, but I get the sense from your post that you will be wanting to get into a lot of this as soon as possible. You mentioned Level 2 for home, there are many benefits but take your time and do a lot of research first to avoid either overspending or underspending, and you also may want to make sure that whatever circuit that you install can be used for a future BEV. Plenty of time to research Level 2 home charging as you will easily survive Level 1 charging for quite awhile.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
2002, Thank you for this. Really appreciate your deep insight and strategy. Good to know there are differences between Supercharger and Tesla High Powered Wall Charger (Destination Charger). But this is exactly what I'm thinking. "How do I take advantage of every possible situation?" haha. I can't wait to geek out on how to optimize trips.

I don't mind sharing price point at all - The used price that I got this for was a smidge over $25k but that's before tax, title and financing. Carvana had it as a "Free Shipping" so I'm thinking it MUST have been local already. Honestly, I don't know if that's considered high or low - but I felt like I was getting a more interesting and full-featured car than the Accord Hybrid than I was comparing it to.

Many articles that I've read mention that you cannot get the tax credit on used vehicles as they can't be passed on; but compared to the MSRP on the touring brand new, I feel like it's a good price for a 1 year old car (with about a year's worth of miles on it).

Definitely not in a hurry to drop $500 bucks on an L2 charger so will just use L1 for now.

Good idea about the circuit map! I'm not at the point where I'm going to go back to either of our parents place and simply pop the plug in, so for now, I'll focus on HV and HV-charge modes while on the freeway of trips greater than 50 miles. I figure either way I'm saving over driving my gas car.

What's interesting is that my garage has what looks like a dryer plug right next to where I normally park!
 

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Maybe previous owner had an EV? If you upload a close up picture of the outlet we can probaby tell ypu what it is.
 

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What's interesting is that my garage has what looks like a dryer plug right next to where I normally park!
You can find many L2s on Amazon for around $200 that are 240V 16A and come in most common plug configurations for 240V circuits rated 20A and up. Find one with a plug that matches your outlet and you are golden. It's a good middle of the road solution that is way better than L1 charging at 120V but significantly less expensive than a 240V 32A L2 that would allow charging at the car's max rate (6kW). A 240V 16A L2 will give your Clarity a full charge in 4-5 hours, which is plenty fast enough for typical home charging overnight.
 

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Definitely not in a hurry to drop $500 bucks on an L2 charger so will just use L1 for now.

What's interesting is that my garage has what looks like a dryer plug right next to where I normally park!

Charge at Level 2 speeds for as little as $20 dollars, or a maximum of $50 dollars depending on options.



Rob43
 

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You guys are super helpful thank you! It looks like there is a HUGE range of pricing available all the way from $20 in parts for the DIY method + the OEM charger, to the very seeingly overpriced Juicebox and Chargepoint chargers.

I took a picture of the wall outlet and google research shows me that its a "crowsfoot" connector, and amazon shows me that there are a boatload of generic looking chargers that fit for around $220. I like to do my research so I won't jump into it too quickly. :)

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07NCTD55...&pd_rd_r=f19b0887-975e-11e9-a88d-27c34bac3539
 

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10-50 is an old style non-grounding plug that probably was installed decades ago. That doesn't mean it won't work, but since you don't know the history of it, it's probably worth having an electrician take a look at it and make sure that it's still in good condition and was installed to code. You could also ask them when they are looking at it if it's possible to upgrade the outlet to something more modern like 14-50 which will be less limiting as far as EVSE choices. However that is probably unlikely as the wiring used is probably not compatible with 14-50. If that's the case then you are basically stuck with 10-50, which is not a problem and is certainly better than not having a 240V outlet at all, so assuming it checks out okay you seem to have had a bit of good fortune there.
 

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You guys are super helpful thank you! It looks like there is a HUGE range of pricing available all the way from $20 in parts for the DIY method + the OEM charger, to the very seeingly overpriced Juicebox and Chargepoint chargers.

I took a picture of the wall outlet and google research shows me that its a "crowsfoot" connector, and amazon shows me that there are a boatload of generic looking chargers that fit for around $220. I like to do my research so I won't jump into it too quickly. :)

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07NCTD55...&pd_rd_r=f19b0887-975e-11e9-a88d-27c34bac3539

Your receptacle looks like my NEMA 10-50R which is what I use for charging.

Here's a pic of my long 25 ft 10 gauge cord, you probably only need a few feet though.

Fast L2 charging for "almost" free...


Rob43
 

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......The used price that I got this for was a smidge over $25k but that's before tax, title and financing. Carvana had it as a "Free Shipping" so I'm thinking it MUST have been local already. Honestly, I don't know if that's considered high or low - but I felt like I was getting a more interesting and full-featured car than the Accord Hybrid than I was comparing it to.

.....
Price point seems reasonable considering the $7500 federal tax incentive was taken and a tiny bit of dealer discounting...
There may be a local utility rebate still in play even for a used Clarity.
Check out your utility company guidelines - they may even offer a nice rebate for L2 charger installations too....

DO let us know how the Carvana experience goes.
I have wondered about how Carvana does business online and customer satisfaction after the sale....
 

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Hey Clarityforum.com folks, it's been a week + 3 days, which according to Carvana's policy officially makes me the official 3 day old owner of a 2018 Honda Clarity. For posterity, I'm going to just leave a few rough thoughts I have about the car AND my experience with Carvana (at 4Sally's request).

Clarity Feelings:

* The 47ish range is definitely enough for the specific task of a weekday commute, but leaves me wanting more EV range on longer drives (if I have to go out of town or make multiple trips within town). On two 250 mile drives to visit my parents, I conserved EV mode for in-town only. Unfortunately I had to fill with gas a few times.

* Prior to getting into the world of EVs, I had a hunch that trying to find/compete with Teslas and Leafs for available chargers (especially the free ones) in public places was going to be an utter pain in the butt. This premonition proved correct. (I would assume the Bay Area in California does have a larger population of EV drivers). I get that full EV vehicles need it "more" since they don't have gas backup but I found myself going places I didn't necessarily need to be in order to get more EV range.

* I've become obsessed with avoiding the gas pump but even more so with saving by getting cheap EV miles. It's weird because I'm already saving a BUNCH of money, but i still feel inexplicably drawn to trying to save MORE.

* Admittedly, I'm overweight (40" waist) - so it's my own fault and i'm working on losing a few, but I'm having a really hard time getting comfortable with the ergonomics on longer drives. Mainly: the center shifter stack is in the way of my knee a little bit, the little hump on the floor is kind of annoying, the narrowness of the seat bolsters is a majorly uncomfortable (hoping those will flatten out) and the steering wheel tilt/location (cuts off the cluster view when I have it in a comfortable place). I'm constantly adjusting the seat and tilt, but this might just be me.

* Due to having to drive family members around in the morning, I do a lot of paid charging after I get to work @ .30 cents/KW. While this represents a major savings over gas - @ .30 cents though, I feel like it's on the more expensive side compared to home charging. .30 cents/KW is almost is equivalent to running the car on HV.

* I find myself very happy with the dual level trunk. I don't know what it is but I prefer the smaller staggered space vs a big open trunk.

* As many have mentioned, it's definitely possible to get by on level 1 charging! I haven't had a situation yet where I haven't had at least 8 hours of downtime - I may NOT upgrade to level 2. We'll see.

* There is lot of redundancy between Android Auto and the car's native functionality - mildly irksome.

* there was a small a-pillar rattle which I've fixed with some closed cell foam, and a small rattle in the seat belt height adjuster.

* Am still not completely used to the spaceship-ness of the clarity, but definitely appreciate the cavernous rear passenger area. My parents and passengers have complimented how spacious it is back there.

* Volume slider is still meh. Doesn't bother me too much, but I find myself reaching for a knob that isn't there too often.

* I often confuse if setting the parking brake is up or down. (obviously the trick is to remember how it is in a "regular" car, but when I see a button, I tend to only want to push it. haha)

* Love that the passenger and driver side glass is a thick dual-pane glass. Ideally needs a special kind of tint.

* HondaLink App - widely regarded as "not-a-great-app", is not a great app.

* compared to other cars I've had there are not really any "mods" available. Which is great!


Carvana Impressions:

* If convenience matters above all else. Carvana. The buying experience was all done through an app, and you can visually inspect the car online and get a carfax. I bought the car spontaneously on a sunday afternoon laying on the couch. I don't get the impression that I'm getting the best deal because the price isn't negotiable. It didn't help that there wasn't too many reference points for the clarity. What I've been telling people is that because the used car market is so hard to gauge, it's not possible to know if you're getting the most rock bottom pricing. But what they lack in price, they make up for in convenience by a LOT. I got out of there for 25,600 before tax title and license.

* They tow the car to you on a flatbed, and give you 7 days to trial the car up to 400 miles ($1/mile thereafter) for a maximum of 2 swaps. Lots of little gimmicks and modern niceties (Candy cup in the car and logo'd breathmints and lipbalm). My general feeling is that by the time you've selected a car that you really want, chances are you're not going to be returning it.

* I appreciated that they "pre-estimate" your finance rate so you don't have to deal with a hard credit pull initially.

* If you finance through "carvana" (Bridgecrest) the rates are decently competitive depending on term and amount (with decent credit). I came in around 4% which was as good as it gets for me for a used car.

* I do notice they cut as many corners to prepare the car for resale. The two new tires they fitting onto the car are definitely not the OEM Michelins. They were some second-tier all season tire. Additionally the "mechanics" they have doing their 150 point inspection WAY overinflated the tire (50PSI - TPMS light came on) and had zapped the lug nuts on way too tight as well. Shame. I had to retorque them with a clicker torque wrench.

* I tried to open a dispute with their repairs team regarding some very corroded rotors (as the car came from new york and was most likely driven on salted roads), but they came back with a long e-mail about how it doesn't impact the functionality or safety. I really didn't appreciate that because 1) it does impact safety, 2) there was bad rotor pulsing 3) surface rust usually goes away, but these rotors are not in great shape. But rather than spend 100 bucks to get it inspected by a mechanic and pay another 50 deductible for them to fix it with heavens-knows-what-generic parts, I will just buy new upgraded rotors and pads and will fix it myself probably 200 bucks in parts and a Saturday afternoon of labor. If i had to give negative marks for Carvana it'd be for this.

* Monthly payments done through the app are...as expected, super convenient.

* Ultimately, I'm glad I tried using an alternate car buying program rather than going to a dealership and feeling like I had to be on the defensive. Would i buy again from them? Yes! definitely.

Sorry for the wall of text posting, if you have any questions, I frequently visit this forum :)
 

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In case you do decide to think about a L2 wall unit for your garage, keep an eye on Ebay: I snagged an open-box Siemens Versicharge for $205 and then paid an electrician $222 to install it. Although my state enacted disincentives to driving hybrids, PHEVs and EVs in the form of annual "road taxes", my electrical utility actively promotes the purchase of high-efficiency appliances, HVAC systems, etc., and is giving me $250 for installing an EVSE!
 
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