All posts by Trevor Heale

eMotor feeding (Image: T. Heale)

Pod Point Home Charger Installation

[Friday 13th January] This post is about gratitude.

Thank you to the following organisations for covering the cost of my POD Point Home Charging Station – UK Government for the OLEV Grant and Hyundai for the balance.

A special heartfelt thank you to POD Point Installation Engineer Leighton for his fast, professional installation in such unpleasant circumstances.

This was the scene when Leighton arrived this morning (Image: T. Heale)
This was the scene when Leighton arrived this morning (Image: T. Heale)
Leighton running cable to new trip (Isolation) switch in meter cupboard (Image: T. Heale)
Leighton running cable to new trip (Isolation) switch in meter cupboard (Image: T. Heale)

The snow had eased off considerably by the time the next picture was taken.

It was still remarkably cold. I mean brass monkey cold. Trust me, I know cold. I’m a man in shorts all year round*

And here was this stranger disembowelling** my house.

POD Point installed (Image: T. Heale)
POD Point installed (Image: T. Heale)

Just over an hour after arriving and two coffees later the charger was in and I’d had a thorough briefing on using it. A very positive (no pun) experience from a professional company.

eMotor feeding (Image: T. Heale)
eMotor feeding (Image: T. Heale)

Thank you to all involved.

I have just heard from Hyundai Bletchley that my Owners Manual will be here soon. When It  arrives I’ll post about the Ioniq’s charge timer function to use Economy 7 electricity.

BTW – The Ioniq eMotor? It is a fantastic machine. Pure pleasure to drive.

Bye for now. I’ll be in touch.

* Picture half a walnut
** Gralloching for you country types

Follow this link to Pod Points website for details:

http://charge.pod-point.com/homecharge/

Dashboard, Ready to Drive (Image: T. Heale)

Hyundai Ioniq Electric Primer: First Drive

This is a quick introduction to using the Hyundai Ioniq Electric. It is intended to give just the basic information required for a test drive, use of an Ioniq Electric from a hire/rental company, or to get your Ioniq Electric home the day you buy it.

Doors

  1. The Ioniq is a four door car (with pull handles) with a button release tailgate.
    Helpful hint: Each time you open the tailgate wipe clean the lens of the rear camera.
  2. Ioniq uses keyless entry, i.e. it opens electronically via a key fob rather than with a physical key. There are two methods of entry:
    1. Unlock and lock the doors using the second button on the key fob.
    2. Press the small black button in either of the front door handles and then pull the handle.

Driving

  1. To start the car:
    1. The key fob must be somewhere inside the car.
    2. Press and hold the brake pedal and press the Start/Stop button to the left of the steering wheel.
Start/Stop Button (Image: T. Heale)
Start/Stop Button (Image: T. Heale)
    1. The electronic controls activate with a melodic jingle and the Ioniq lights up the dashboard in a colourful manner as it checks that all is well.
Dashboard at STartup (Image: T. Heale)
Dashboard at Startup (Image: T. Heale)
    1. A green car graphic (left of the speedometer) shows you are ready to select drive and move off.
Dashboard, Ready to Drive (Image: T. Heale)
Dashboard, Ready to Drive (Image: T. Heale)
  1. To select Drive press the D button on the centre console with foot still on brake. The ‘Handbrake’ will release automatically.
Gear Selector (Image: T. Heale)
Gear Selector (Image: T. Heale)
  1. Note that the Ioniq has been programmed with ‘creep’, i.e. it will move forward like an automatic even when the accelerator is not pressed.
  2. The Ioniq has both conventional and electronic brakes. The physical brakes (discs & pads) only operate at low speeds. At all faster speeds pressing the brake pedal will cause the electric motor (engine) to become a generator and this ‘regeneration’ creates a significant braking force as it puts power back into the battery.
    Helpful hint: Because the physical brakes are used so little they can accumulate debris/rust and make scratching/squeeking noises when the car first drives off. It’s nothing to be concerned about and usually stops after the first couple of uses.
  3. The car generates sound at low speed to warn pedestrians of your presence (up to about 20mph). Helpful hint: VESS (Virtual Engine Sound System) can be switched off but it is switched on by default each time the car is activated.
  4. Once in Drive mode you can accelerate up to maximum speed (about 105mph) without changing gear.
  5. You can come to a complete stop in Drive. Whilst still on the brake, press P during short stops (traffic, etc). To drive again brake and D.
    If you are stopping for any length of time you should then engage the handbrake. Lift the control at the rear of the centre console. Lift for on and lift again for off (you may hear a whirring sound each time).
Parking Brake (Image: T. Heale)
Parking Brake (Image: T. Heale)
  1. To turn off completely use the Start/Stop button.
    Helpful hint: If the keys were placed in the car remember to pick them up when leaving.
  2. The car will auto lock after a short while once the key is out of range (1.5m) but for security just press the first button on the fob.

Charging

  1. Ensure the car is in Park mode, the handbrake is engaged and the motor is off.
  2. Release the charging port door using the button to the right of the steering wheel.
Charing Port Door Release (Image: T. Heale)
Charging Port Door Release (Image: T. Heale)
  1. Ensure the charge point is powered up and ready (the Morrisons Supermarket free charge point, below, shows a green light). Remove the dust cover from the cable connector and plug it in.
Morrisons Charge Point (Image: T. Heale)
Morrisons Charge Point (Image: T. Heale)
  1. The charging port door is located over the rear nearside (left) wheel. Remove the dust covers from both the cable connector and socket. Plug in the cable. The connector displays a white light when it is properly seated. The cable is now locked in place and cannot be pulled free.
Charge Port Door (Image: T. Heale)
Charge Port Door (Image: T. Heale)
  1. If charging from a public charge point, at this point you need to initiate a charge (the method will depend on the charge point model).
  2. The IONIQ dashboard shows blue lights when it is charging.
Blue Charging Lights (Image: T. Heale)
Blue Charging Lights (Image: T. Heale)
  1. The car should be locked if unattended, but operating the locks and doors has no effect on the charge operation.
  2. Release the charge cable connector using the second button on the key fob (two clicks on the unlock button) and withdraw the connector.
  3. Replace the dust covers on the cable and the car socket. Close the charging port door; charging is complete.

[Thanks to Trevor Larkum for his Zoe Primer post this is based on.]

Charging at Cherwell (Image: T. Heale)

Rapid Charging an Ioniq eMotor?

Where were we? Ah yes. I have my Ecotricity* Android App and my Chargemaster Polar RFID card. I’m ready for the big leagues. Rapid high current charging here I come. “Gather yourself woman!” I said. “We’re off into the countryside”.

An hour out from Milton Keynes, we’re tootling down the M40 on a misty Saturday afternoon and the Memsahib challenges Satnag to guide us home. Duly programmed Satnag does its thing and Ioniq interrupts proceedings with a message of gloom and disaster.

“You will never see your destination. Doom! Doom again! Woe betide the fool that tries to… ”.

Well that’s what it felt like and now I know what Range Anxiety (RA) can do to a fella. It’s not nice.
The actual message? “You have insufficient charge to reach your destination”. And then as an afterthought “Would you like to know the nearest defibrillator?” or did it say “charge point”? You get how I’m feeling.
Five miles later we arrive at Moto Cherwell Valley. Some semblance of cognition kicks in as I remember that electric charge points aren’t located near the liquid fuels and we play hunt the charge point in the car park.

Look, as evidenced in this image…  We won 🙂

Charging at Cherwell (Image: T. Heale)
Charging at Cherwell (Image: T. Heale)

We didn’t know yet but something was wrong. Not the process, no, that was fine. Introductions went well:

  • Phone, App – Say hello to – Charge point.
  • Charge point – Phone App.

Electronic handshaking takes place. This is so much easier than I expected. “Do you accept the cost?”. I accepted. Grudgingly. I don’t have my free charges yet but £6 is still a bargain.
Found the AC connector. It looked exactly like the one at home (some of you are jumping ahead) and Click! The blue charging lights coming on the App assures me I’ll be told when to come back.

RA sorted, I notice that my back teeth are floating and the cold isn’t helping. Time to get in out of the cold and find the toilets.

Just consider that a moment. Find the toilets.

Why would I have to try to find the toilets? More to the point why would any public place hide the ^%$%ing toilets? I have visited facilities in many service stations. They’ve always been near the entrance and clearly labelled. Moto Cherwell Valley believe otherwise**. Plan accordingly if you stop there.

Mind, body and spirit at ease we look dotingly out of the window at eMotor suckling at the Ecotricity teat. All is well with the world. You know it isn’t but we don’t. Yet.

Let me offer you some simple advice for these times. Bring a book or magazine or something. If it’s going to be a flask and some sandwiches stay in the car so as to avoid being turfed out for not buying anything.

Forty minutes later, I’m feeling concerned. There has been no word from App. We go back to eMotor and the charge lights are off. I’m not concerned any more. We can be on our way and I’ll take App to task later.

In five minutes time I will be talking to a helpful young man (Victor) at ecotricity.

Pre-launch checks show we now have sixteen more miles than what we came in with.
What? Sixteen? One six? Not six zero? Grrrrr at all things electric!
“Breathe” She says. I breathe.
“That cost me six quid!” I breathe again.
“Where’s my phone?” I breathe again.
There’s a number on the charge point if you have any problem.

Turns out that there were two charge points and I parked at the wrong one. You live and learn.

This is for slow charges (Image: T. Heale)
This is for slow charges (Image: T. Heale)
This is for rapid charges (Image: T. Heale)
This is for rapid charges (Image: T. Heale)

BTW – The Ioniq eMotor? It is a fantastic machine. Pure pleasure to drive.

Bye for now. I’ll be in touch.

 

*Yes their logo is ecotricity but I believe in Capitalization for proper nouns.

** Enter building***. Fight through crowd. Pass the hot drinks turn right. Fight through crowd armed with hot drinks and food. Look into the distance on the left side there is a small sign about two thirds of the way down.  Small sign with even smaller logos representing the genders.

***If you exit the building to the outdoor seated area the doors open automatically so you can look at you eMotor unobstructed. When you walk back in mind your nose (or other protuberance), the doors do not open of their own accord.

Trevor Heale at home in his new Ioniq Electric (Image: T. Larkum)

So I Own an Ioniq eMotor (Electric Vehicle)

One week into the new and exciting world of my new eMotor and I’m looking to venture further afield.

Trevor Heale at home in his new Ioniq Electric (Image: T. Larkum)
Trevor Heale at home in his new Ioniq Electric (Image: T. Larkum)

Home charging is easy, if a little long with a 13amp plug and I eagerly await my 32 amp POD Point to take advantage of cheap night rate electricity. It’s still called Economy 7 you know, just like it used to be way back when.

I mentioned in my previous post I was tackling range anxiety. Doing so within the confines of Milton Keynes (MK) seemed sensible. It was fun using sport mode to drain the battery 🙂
At eighteen miles range remaining all the appropriate warning lights went off (came on?) and…

I continued driving!

Yup. I continued. I’m that kind of chap.
Brave huh? Yes, for a given value of brave. Eco mode made me feel a little more secure.
After a couple of miles of tormenting lights, prudence reared her head and I agreed with her. It was time for me to tackle my first rapid charge.

Dear reader please forgive me as I wave my ignorance at you in the following.

I pulled over, stopped and pressed lots of buttons* (no manual yet). Within moments I had a map of Milton Keynes and dozens of choices to hoover up some power. Ooh how happy and clever I felt.

It didn’t last.

Broughton is a newer area in MK so I chose to explore it and fill up there. Yes, since you ask, it happened to be the nearest point. Remember, I’m working on my range anxiety.

If I’d known the area I would’ve stayed on the main road and seen the chargers by the local shops. I didn’t. Satnag** said turn right into Cavan Way and I did. The location of the charger and the satnav were at odds by approximately one road and two hundred yards. I’ll remember that in future searches.

I parked (reversing cameras are great) and tackled the Monolith. Which cable/connector to use? Easy I know my plug options. Now, where do I pay? Ok. Sigh. I’ll read the instructions. Bu**er!

One of the many Polar rapid charge points around Milton Keynes, this one is in Central MK (Image: T. Larkum)
One of the many Polar rapid charge points around Milton Keynes, this one is in Central MK (Image: T. Larkum)

Yeah, I knew somewhere in the back of my mind you needed a card but surely I can just buy some electric? Just a little bit for cash? Eh? Hole in the wall technology right? Wrong. Holes in the wall are mostly for getting money out not for putting it in.
I closed my recharging flap (that’s not a euphemism) and did the walk of ignorance and shame back to my comfy leather seat. It felt further than the three paces. The heated seat and steering wheel cheered me until I was back at home with my three pin plug.

So take heed brave new adventurers, preparation is required to charge away from home.

I have now joined the Chargemaster Polar Network and Ecotricity (for the motorway free charges). Currently the Polar network has a six month offer free of standing charge. I’ll review my use of their service in May 🙂

One other thing. eMotors are eligible for free parking in MK once you have a green permit. Apply on line at the MK Council website.

BTW – The Ioniq eMotor? It is a fantastic machine. Pure pleasure to drive.

Bye for now. I’ll be in touch.

* The next day I noticed a horrible whining noise. My shock and disappointment convinced me a motor bearing was on the way out. Hang on what’s that light? Virtual Engine Sound System (VESS) active. Not now it isn’t.

** Thank you Lewis Randall for “Satnag” 🙂

[The next part is here.]

Trevor Heale's new Hyundai Ioniq Electric (Image: T. Larkum)

An Introduction to the Hyundai Ioniq Electric

Hi, I am Trevor Heale. This is an introduction/taster to the Ioniq EV. Look online for in depth reviews/specs etc. Robert Llewellyn’s “Fully Charged” YouTube program was my introduction to the Ioniq. So I have to thank him for this adventure.

I have finally managed to go electric and here’s my first thoughts on my Hyundai Ioniq Premium SE.

Trevor Heale's new Hyundai Ioniq Electric (Image: T. Larkum)
Trevor Heale’s new Hyundai Ioniq Electric (Image: T. Larkum)

It is a fantastic machine. Pure pleasure to drive. I was not expecting to ever feel like this about motoring again.

Driving the Ioniq EV is simple:

  • Walk up to the car with the key in your pocket, press the button on the drivers door and pull the handle.
  • Once the driver’s door closes the driver’s seat moves to its designated position (nice).
  • There is no ignition switch.
  • Push and hold the foot brake pedal and press the start button to activate the car. The dash board display is lovely as it runs through its start up checks. Hold the foot brake, press ‘D’ on the centre console and the car is ready.
  • Press the right pedal and enjoy.

 

Pros

  • Fantastic machine. Pure pleasure to drive. Did I say that yet?
  • Regenerative Braking – I love this. I have it set to the highest level and 95% of the time I only use the right pedal (can’t very well call it the gas pedal) to go faster or slower.
  • Roomy – Five adults with no bother (No noticeable loss of performance :o)
  • Comfy – Heated and vented front seats.
  • Super safety features (inc all round air bags and sensors).
  • Cheap servicing – Five years up front cost £290.83
  • An incredible amount of electronic features.
  • Three driving modes. Eco, Normal and Sport.
  • Range. I am mainly using Normal (and occasionally Sport mode :o). The more it learns about my driving style the more I’m getting from each charge. After four cold frosty days and two charges my initial range has increased from 91 miles (at delivery) to 135 miles. I expect that to increase with warmer weather and Eco mode.

 

Cons

None for the Ioniq itself. It’s a fantastic machine… Sorry off topic for a moment.

The problems I’ve had were due to Hyundai’s launch team.

  • No EV manuals (for staff or customer) were available!
  • There are an incredible amount of electronic features, most of which I have had to work out for myself. I have a copy of the Hybrid manual but it doesn’t address my EV specific questions.
  • No service manual available at delivery.
  • The delivery Check list that we worked through prior to my acceptance of the car didn’t include unplugging it from a charge point (Double clicking the unlock button seems to be the answer). Having a manual would have helped. A lot.

 

Overcoming Range Anxiety

I’m currently running the battery down to reset my anxiety level.

Previously if my diesel was down to 30 miles I became anxious because it gave no further indication of range and I’d top it up pronto. With the far more accurate range indicator of my Ioniq I am comfortable driving towards ’empty’ confident in what it’s telling me.

 

Being an EV owner

What can I say? I am very, very pleased. Almost smug.

Compared to my Kia Cee’d (£60 per fill and rising) it’s wonderful getting my fuel from home and it only costing £8 in instalments* to travel the same distance.

We are planning to tour the UK soon and hope to take full advantage of being an Ecotricity customer (Rapid free charging at motorway service stations). I’ll let you know.

My thanks to Trevor Larkum for guiding me through the transition to EV driving. I think everyone should have a knowledgeable friend when going electric. His help has taken the fear out of this.

Thanks also to Bletchley Hyundai for supplying the car so quickly and their unwavering support for the lack of manuals.

*Three charges 🙂

[The next part is here.]