Archive for February 7th, 2014

When will Electric Cars be Economic

Building Electric Auto InfrastructureThere are two big negatives when it comes to purchasing electric vehicle today. When will electric cars be economic and what are the factors that are controlling the time for payback.  The first and foremost is the cost of the vehicle. It is often typically $10,000 more than the same size car. Even the same model that is gasoline powered.

Another factor that troubles many consumers in addition to the increased cost, is the distance that you can drive. An electric vehicle before needs the battery to be recharged. The other issue of course is once the battery is discharged how to charge it and where can you plug it in. These issues are being addressed by the industry through a number of initiatives. One is to decrease the cost of the lithium battery. Secondly to install plug-in charging stations on major highways across the country. This post will discuss the changes in prices for lithium batteries.

When will Electric Cars be Economic

Today’s gasoline powered car engine costs about $2000. An electric lithium battery will cost about $600 per kilowatt. A typical electric car will require a 20 kW battery making the cost of the battery about $12,000. This is $10,000 more than what the gasoline powered car engine costs. Electric vehicles are still very expensive. Compared to gasoline powered vehicles.

Electric lithium batteries will drop in price from $600 per kilowatt down to approximately $300 per kilowatt in the next few years. This will save roughly six thousand dollars off the cost of an electric vehicle. And make it much more interesting to the consumer.

In the next 10 years by 2020, the expected cost of a lithium battery will drop from $300 per kilowatt down to approximately $100 per kilowatt. Making it compatible price wise with the $2000 car engine. We expect that by 2020 electric vehicles will be significantly higher sales than they are currently at this point. In time due to the drop in cost for lithium batteries and also the fact that the cost of driving an electric vehicle is far cheaper per mile than a gasoline powered vehicle. In addition to enabling electric vehicles, the development and improvements to the lithium battery will have profound impacts on many other industries as well.

Can you shut off vents in unused rooms

Can you shut off vents in unused roomsCan you shut off vents in unused rooms. You can turn off the heat in unused rooms however there are some things that you should consider before taking this step. Turning off the heat can have consequences as well as saving you money in terms of your overall heating costs for the winter. In addition in the summertime you may want to turn off the central air-conditioning distribution to those same rooms to reduce the amount of energy used to cool your house.

No Water Pipes in the Wall

Make sure there are no water pipes in the walls in any room where you shut off the heat. In some cases the water pipes are encased inside the outside wall of your house. Turning off the heat in that room could cause those pipes to become cold and even freeze in cold weather.

Water pipes can easily freeze in the wintertime and if you turn the heat off these pipes can freeze causing water leaks. As water turns to ice inside pipes, the ice expands and will break those pipes causing water leaks once the ice thaws.

Your insurance may not be willing to pay for damages if you did not heat the room or turn the water off to those pipes and drain them.

Can you shut off vents in unused rooms and Turn off The Heat

If you do turn the heat off in a room with water pipes you may also want to turn off the water to those rooms and drain the pipes to prevent the pipes breaking if the water where to freeze in the water pipes. Draining individual water pipes in the home is almost impossible unless you could isolate those particular water pipes from all other sources.

Aside from worrying about freezing pipes, consumers can turn the heat off and close the door and not be concerned about the cooler room. They will save some energy costs in that they do not need to heat as much space as normal during the winter. And as we mentioned at the beginning of the post closing off the vents during the summer and not cooling the same room will also save energy by not having to cool that particular room.

If there’s any doubt that there might be water pipes inside the walls of the room that you’re thinking about turning the heat off and not heating that particular room then we suggest that you continue to heat the room during wintertime to avoid any possibility of any kind of accident. Water damage to a room in a home can amount to thousands of dollars in damage. Most people cannot afford this. If nothing else, leave the heat on in the room. Just turn down the temperature in that particular room to reduce the cost of heating that particular area.  You also should confirm how much insulation is in the walls. The insulation is  protecting the water pipes and also insulating your home. You may want to increase the level of insulation in the walls to  reduce your overall heating cost.


Tire Ratings

These are the tire rating codes that you will find on your tires. It is important that you match the right tires with the proper ratings to your vehicle. Check your instruction booklet for the proper tires for your car, truck or SUV ! Using the wrong tires can make your car unstable while driving causing loss of control.

Alternatively, your tire dealer can recommend the proper tires for your car based on speed ratings and manufacturer guidelines. If you chose tires that are not recommended for your car there is a chance of experiencing instability at higher speeds which could lead to an accident. Additionally you may not be able to stop as fast or properly in an extreme breaking situation. Stick with the right tires for your car.

Tire Ratings

  • L 75 mph 120 km/h Off-Road & Light Truck Tires
  • M 81 mph 130 km/h
  • N 87 mph 140km/h Temporary Spare Tires
  • P 93 mph 150 km/h Q 99 mph 160 km/h Studless & Studdable Winter Tires
  • R 106 mph 170 km/h H.D. Light Truck Tires
For higher speeds consider:
  • S 112 mph 180 km/h Family Sedans & Vans
  • T 118 mph 190 km/h Family Sedans & Vans
  • U 124 mph 200 km/h H 130 mph 210 km/h Sport Sedans & Coupes

And even higher speeds, consider:

  • V 149 mph 240 km/h Sport Sedans, Coupes & Sports Cars
  • W 168 mph 270 km/h Exotic Sports Cars
  • Y 186 mph 300 km/h Exotic Sports Cars

I have always wondered about these speed ratings for tires. Who is going to drive at 300 kilometers per hour or 187 miles per hour on North American roads? The roads are not built for these speeds and if you do drive anywhere close to this level, chances are a police car is going to be in hot pursuit. While they may not be able to catch you, they will lay down spike belts somewhere ahead and channel you towards them so that you ruin an extremely expensive set of tires, possibly your car and probably lose your license for a long time or worse end up in jail.

If you happen to be racing on a circuit then yes you need these tires rated for high speeds, but no the average consumer who drives everyday to work or to the corner store for a quart of milk.

Winter Tires

On another topic, consumers also should drive primarily with all season tires in most areas on their vehicles. Unless you live in areas were there is a lot of snow. If so you should plan to install winter tires on your car for the winter. In some jurisdictions, it is a law for residents to have winter tires on their cars during the winter.

The recent winter of 2013 and 2014 has shown what happens when snow and ice hit an area which is not prepared for snow and ice. Everything comes to a standstill and no one can move because they are driving around on bald summer tires, summer tires. If they had all season tires or winter tires, many of these people who are blaming the government for no salt on the roads would have been able to get around much better and would not have been complaining about being on the road for 8 or 10 hours stuck in traffic that could not move. None of the talking heads on the news programs that were reporting these events talked at all about anyone having winter tires on their cars or even anything about tires. You can rest assured that people in the south are not using winter tires no even all season tires on their cars.

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