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Discussion Starter #1
After a day of driving through the flatlands of Nevada and Utah, I could see myself pulling into a small roadside community for a night's rest, and the extreme edge of my Volt's drivable range (I'll throw out the number 600 miles, but the point is that the battery would be very low and the ICE gas tank would be on empty).

I would pull my Volt into the local Union 76 station to fillup, then cross the street to park in the Motel Six lot, get out, and head in to register. I'd then take my luggage into my room for a good sleep.

I want my Volt to spend the first few hours (or however long it takes) running it's generator to recharge the battery, so that in the morning I can load up, top off the tank, and head off for another 600 miles of driving.
 

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I would prefer that the motel 6 simply install metered electrical outlets that they can just charge me for on my hotel bill the next morning. Cheaper and uses less gasoline.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So would I, but we can't count on Motel Six complying. =-)
 

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Ask for a back room. Then just run an extension cord through the motel-6 window and out to the Volt. Plug it in and don't say anything. I'll bet ya anything that nobody will notice or even care.
 

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I want my Volt to spend the first few hours (or however long it takes) running it's generator to recharge the battery, so that in the morning I can load up, top off the tank, and head off for another 600 miles of driving.
Using the ICE to charge the battery back up to full misses the point of this car. The ICE is so inefficient, that it makes no sense to use it to charge the battery back up. If Motel 6 won't allow you to take power from the room, then you are just better off driving off the next day on range extended power from the ICE than to have it run half the night charging the battery just for the 40 EV miles.

Carry and extension cord and explain what you are doing to the night manager. Offer him/her a fair payment including a profit in cash for the use of the electricity. I'm sure you will have no troubles.;)
 

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If Motel 6 won't allow you to take power from the room, then you are just better off driving off the next day on range extended power from the ICE than to have it run half the night charging the battery just for the 40 EV miles.

Carry and extension cord and explain what you are doing to the night manager. Offer him/her a fair payment including a profit in cash for the use of the electricity. I'm sure you will have no troubles.;)

I see the OP's point.. There could be places on long trips where you want a full charge & to top off your tank before heading out, even knowing the efficiencies ....
You can't rely on every stop or motel to have parking close enough for an extention cord, (not to mention the great feeling of leaving your motel door or window cracked open for a while) .....
Also, you say to "offer" cash (bribe :) ), the manager for the use of the electricity ... Seems Un do-able .
If your not sliding him at least a $10 or a $20 to bend some rules or look the other way, it ain't gonna happen, ... then how much is that 40 mile charge going to cost in MPG terms .. (" Pssst, hey manager, let me plug this in here in your lobby for a few hours, there's two dollars & eighty-three cents in it for 'ya, whadda you say ... :) )
A switch in the Volt that allows the user, say, up to a 3 hr ICE charge, would solve most of these concerns ....
 

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Let's say conservatively the Volt has a range of 300 miles. If you don't get the charge at the Motel 6 but you still have the full tank as in the original example, then that means that you can drive 260 miles before you'll need to fill up again. How many stretches of highway are there in the US with greater than say 200 miles between gas stations? I have driven in almost every state in the US, and I can't say that I have ever seen that kind of distances between stations. They may exist, but it's super rare.

The Volt really isn't designed to be a long distance touring machine. It's really meant to be a commuting machine. The nice thing is though, unlike other EVs, the Volt can be used for touring as well.:cool:
 

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I just went out to Rachel, Nevada (think: Area 51) on the Extraterrestrial Highway and on the way, saw a sign that said "Next Gas 150 Miles". That's about the worst I have seen. Usually it's "Next Gas 40 Miles" or so.
 

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Ask for a back room. Then just run an extension cord through the motel-6 window and out to the Volt. Plug it in and don't say anything. I'll bet ya anything that nobody will notice or even care.

[Mr Rogers voice] Can you say theft of services?[/Mr Rogers voice] I bet you can learn while spending the night in jail
 

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I dunno if it will be. They let you plug consumer electronics into their outlets. So use of power isn't theft. At worst it'll be a violation of the hotel's policy.
 

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I dunno if it will be. They let you plug consumer electronics into their outlets. So use of power isn't theft. At worst it'll be a violation of the hotel's policy.
Nope, you can use electricity inside the room, but once you plug in a car by running a cord out the window it becomes theft of services. I am a retired NY cop and the laws are different in other states but I bet most states would consider it T/O/S

PS you will be guilty of T/O/S but the motel may not want to press the issue. You may wind up paying $50 or $100 to the motel to avoid being arrested
 

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I tried to search relevent laws. Most of them classify TOS in that regards if there was "improper diversion" of electricty in the overall greater picture or not rendering proper payment to a hotel in the specific sense. Which really falls upon the hotels policy on electrical use. Maybe New York hotels have it in the agreement that utilities are provided for use within the hotel room alone. Which would make it theft of services. But I can't find state laws labeling TOS as the use of a hotel room's utilities outside the room.
 

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I have been retired for a long time, but if I were working today and I was called to a motel I would do everything in my power to avoid any kind of arrest. I would point out that the owner would have to waste a day in court if he pressed charges, and I would also point out that the person plugging in the car would get off cheaper by offering a on the spot cash settlement. I think any reasonable cop, motel owner, or traveler would want to do what ever was necessary to avoid a legal mess. But if I was using a motel I would not want to take the chance on running into an unreasonable cop or motel owner. It just isn't worth the trouble to try to sneak a cord to your car even if you get away with it 100 time if you are caught on 101 the trouble wasn't worth it.. Make your agreement up front, and if you can't get the owner to agree go someplace else or just pay for the gas you need.
 

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Easily solved...

The truth is, this issue can be addressed easily and cheaply OVER TIME. When the Volt first comes out, there won't be very many motels with a convenient place to charge your EREV overnight, but if EREV is a successful concept in the marketplace, that will change. At first it will be like high-speed internet service was a decade ago, a significant feature that motels point out in their advertisements and signs. There probably won't be many parking spaces with a charging point and there may be a fee for using it, but it shouldn't be significant (in fact in order to sell it to smart consumers, it would have to be less than a gallon of gas.) RV parking spaces come with electricity, are usually cheap and an RV in the summertime will use WAY more electricity for AC than it should cost to top off the Volt's battery pack. Eventually I'm sure that the car-travel-oriented motels near highways would offer this as an included amenity, much as high-speed internet connectivity is today.
 

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Oh...I'm not saying you'd be free and clear. I agree with you for the most part. Legal or not it could cause an issue if you don't get permission first.
 
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