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Today I had what can only be described as an “electric car moment.” I was driving back home from my kung fu lesson and passed by a gas station that’s under construction. As I passed it, I thought was “hey, that’s getting close. I’ll be able to get gas there… wait a second….”
No. No, I won’t need to get gas at that station.
There have been other interesting moments over the last two weeks as well. I was out of town for some of the last couple of weeks, and I left my car at the airport while I was out. But the distance from my home to DIA is more than half a charge on my Leaf, especially with the AC running, so I needed to make sure I parked near a charger.
Thankfully, Canopy Parking on Tower Road has chargers in both valet and covered parking, and I was able to find a charger to plug in to. I did have a moment of panic, however, when I pulled up and found that the charger had only a single plug, and it was already plugged into another car. Thankfully, however, that car was done charging, so I unplugged it and plugged the charger into mine. Unfortunately, doing so triggered the alarm, which made me jump a bit.
And how do I know the charging was done? The charger was off, which means that the computer in the car turned the charger off. Had the charger been on still, I’m not sure what I would have done, since I forgot my own personal charger…. Never again.
For the record – if a Leaf is plugged in and all three blue lights are either solid on or off, the Leaf is fully charged. And if the Leaf’s owner is polite, he or she has set the car into “auto lock” mode, which means that the charger is locked into the charging port until the car is doing charging, at which point the charger unlocks and someone else can pull the charger out. That’s what I did. The only time I’d lock the charger completely is if I needed to use my own charger, and that’s to prevent someone from stealing my charger. Those things are expensive.
Since that scare, however, I’ll be taking my own personal charger to the airport from now on. Along with a nice long, 15+ amp rated extension cord.
One more electric car moment to share today – I was driving with my wife last weekend, and I was talking about how the Leaf can out accelerate most cars when I put my foot on the gas. She pointed out that it’s not the “gas” at all – it’s the “accelerator.”
The accelerator pedal needs a shorter name for electric cars. I’m open to suggestions.