2019 Canadian Clarity Harsh Winter Question

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by Andrew97, Aug 17, 2019.

  1. Denrac

    Denrac New Member

    I live in Quebec city, it's not Siberia nor Alaska but we do have low temperature for weeks in a row.
    "the battery warmer only works when plugged" : on page 365 of owner manual, they say that the charge indicator blinks once after staying on for a few seconds when the battery has been fully charged and the battery heating system has been activated. I observed that behavior last winter and the "on - blinking" occurs only once in a while, so it looks like the battery heater is not constantly on.
    The heater "draws a small amount of power" : I didn't have to shut off the charger when the kitchen oven was on as they were both on the same circuit (don't be scared, the situation has been corrected). Last winter, the car never failed to start when left unpluged for the night at minus 25 celsius. I agree that this stuff is not highly scientific, but many aspects of the Clarity are in that "flou artistique".
    2002 and Olive like this.
  2. Olive

    Olive New Member

    Thanks for the info! This winter will be my first with the car (got it in july). The car will be parked on the street a couple days a month unplugged and it’s good to know that I will not be stranded in the cold days.
  3. 2002

    2002 Well-Known Member

    I had not seen the section of the manual that you referenced, thanks. I am guessing that you are looking at the French version as it is on page 465 of the English manual. I also found a couple of more references to the battery warmer that I had not noticed before,

    Page 455
    Canadian Models
    When the battery warming system is activated, the battery may take longer to charge.

    Page 467
    Canadian Models
    When the battery warming system is activated, it may not sufficiently charge within the charging period that you have set.

    We know that the battery warmer works when plugged in, the manual is quite clear about that. But the manual also indicates that in Canada only, some type of warming process occurs when the vehicle has gotten too cold to drive, and running the engine will warm it back up. The manual doesn't state exactly what is being warmed or how the engine is warming it, but since it makes it clear that this only happens in Canada the theory is that the electricity generated by the engine runs the battery warmer in those situations. Maybe that's not what happens but so far we haven't come up with any other theory why only in Canada you can sometimes get out of the "too cold to drive" situation by running the engine for a period of time.
  4. victor_2019

    victor_2019 Active Member

    yes, but that is for the US market models, and the text is different for the Canadian market models.

    They wouldn't make two versions of the text for two different markets if there was no difference between the two models.
  5. MNSteve

    MNSteve Well-Known Member

    I care about the battery heater only in an academic sense since I have the US model. My question is whether to believe literally what the manual says (for the US model) which translates to "Don't leave your Clarity parked outside in conditions where the battery temperature reaches -30°C." Or to use different language, "I am going to stay in a hotel where the car will be outside overnight, and temperatures are forecast to be in the -30°C range. Should I postpone my trip?" Frankly, if I found myself in this scenario, I'd be looking for reasons to postpone the trip.
  6. victor_2019

    victor_2019 Active Member

    In my opinion if you arrive in the evening and park overnight, after driving with a warm battery, it's unlikely that your battery will cool down to -30 overnight.

    It's a large mass packed together. Without active cooling it takes a long time to cool down.

    For example leaf owners found that once their battery was hot and their charging throttled, the battery was still hot and throttled the next day after parking overnight.
  7. MNSteve

    MNSteve Well-Known Member

    Perhaps. I think you misjudge the cooling effect of -30, especially if there is a hint of a breeze. But I generally do my highway driving in HV, so the EV miles will be minimal before parking. I wonder how much battery heat driving in HV generates. There is a fair amount of energy flowing into and out of the battery even in HV mode.
  8. victor_2019

    victor_2019 Active Member

    I don't think a breeze would do much since the battery is inside the car. It's not exposed to the elements.

    I've forgotten bottles of water overnight in the trunk in winter and they didn't freeze.
  9. lorem101

    lorem101 Member

    I parked my car outdoors all of last winter in Toronto, plugged in to 110V at home and unplugged at work, there were no issues. On the coldest nights it turns on the engine as soon as the start button is pressed, and of course range is very low ;)
    Olive likes this.
  10. Kranberry

    Kranberry Member

    Toronto here as well. My car is pretty much outside all the time. I don't have a plug outside close enough to my car to keep it plugged in overnight. I think the coldest it got last year was around mid -20 C and car started no issues even though outside and unplugged. As lorem101 said, the engine starts immediately and range is horrid, but no issues with starting so far.
  11. Andrew97

    Andrew97 Member

    Wow i didn't expect so many answers thank you every one, really thank you! There some very useful information posted by you guys. I'm not really worried but more interested because i will have a L2 charger at home in a few weeks just before the winter barely starts. The car will mostly always be plugged in. And we also have a lot of urban bornes électriques over here in QC,Laval & Montreal with circuit électrique.

    Thanks you all again for your answers i really appreciate it!
  12. Ohliuw

    Ohliuw Member

    Just a note on the range - the main reason why the range drops in cold weather is due to heating. Think of it as your baseboard heating at home; guess what - it uses electricity (whereas the ICE engines generate heat, which is then used to heat the cabin). Now some fully EVs have Heatpumps to help, but they are on the same principle as the home heatpumps - they lose efficiency as the temps drop below freezing, so they won’t help at all during the cold winter months. They might give you few extra miles ins Spring/Fall, but they are not worth it imho as you can just layer up and reduce the heating a bit.

    so if you preheat while plugged in and don’t go nuts on the heating while driving, you should be able to get much better ranges

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