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Discussion Starter #1
I have posted a couple of other threads previously about buying a volt. I am a weekend driver and I live in a condo in Seattle, and my parking spot has an electrical outlet a few feet from it. I asked if I could use it (and reimbursing the HOA), but was told I could not because they were afraid of liability and the slippery slope of everyone plugging in. Short of suing the HOA or engaging in civil disobedience of plugging it in surreptitiously, there is a public charger at a nearby drug store (but it appears to limit parking for 2 hours). Is it worth it to recharge a few times a week (presumably for free) until the HOA changes its mind? I don't need the car during the week, but do drive to Vancouver, BC a few times a month. Thanks
 

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My two cents, from what you described, it doesn't sound like the Volt is remotely the car for you. Heck, if the only driving I did was Seattle to BC a couple times a month, I might just rent a car for that.
 

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I currently have a paid off Honda Civic--- and I loan my car to my parents in the summertime because they spend their summers in BC-- and I rent a car. But I like the idea of clean driving/really saving gas when I do use a car.
 

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Well that about a 150 mile one way to Vancouver, right? So only about 50 to 60 miles would be pure electric. Maybe a Bolt would fit what you seem to want, if you have a place to recharge up in BC?
 

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If you can't plugin then you are just driving a hybrid and there are better hybrids available. What makes a Volt a Volt is driving on electricity and that's worth putting up with the limitations of the Volt, i.e. it's too small, lacks power seats, has no sunroof option, it's only available in FWD. The hybrid Malibu uses the Voltec drive train and it's bigger, has power pwer seats and is available with a sunroof.

Before you give up you should explore what it would take ti install a proper level 2 EVSE in your parking lot. You might want to call Chargepoint and see what options they have for residential parking lots. With a proper EVSE there should be no liablity issue and if you can get one that handles the metering then you eliminate the cost issue. If you have something like a Chargepoint in your lot then you also eliminate the "what if everybody needs a charger" objection, with that kind of solution you would just have as many EVSEs as needed and there wouldn't be any cost incurred by the HOA.
 

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I currently have a paid off Honda Civic--- and I loan my car to my parents in the summertime because they spend their summers in BC-- and I rent a car. But I like the idea of clean driving/really saving gas when I do use a car.
I'll buck the trend and suggest a Prius. Most folks focus on the fuel economy and may not realize how clean running it is; even for a non-plugin.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
If you can't plugin then you are just driving a hybrid and there are better hybrids available. What makes a Volt a Volt is driving on electricity and that's worth putting up with the limitations of the Volt, i.e. it's too small, lacks power seats, has no sunroof option, it's only available in FWD. The hybrid Malibu uses the Voltec drive train and it's bigger, has power pwer seats and is available with a sunroof.

Before you give up you should explore what it would take ti install a proper level 2 EVSE in your parking lot. You might want to call Chargepoint and see what options they have for residential parking lots. With a proper EVSE there should be no liablity issue and if you can get one that handles the metering then you eliminate the cost issue. If you have something like a Chargepoint in your lot then you also eliminate the "what if everybody needs a charger" objection, with that kind of solution you would just have as many EVSEs as needed and there wouldn't be any cost incurred by the HOA.

That was explicitly shot down earlier by the HOA. I live in WA state-- if you know a lawyer who is willing to work pro bono to fight for such a right, please contact me.
 

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Nice thing about a Volt is that it is a great car on electricity and it is also a great car on gas. If you can't charge up, just gas up and drive. If your situation changes later and you can charge, then so much the better.
 

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i agree with barry have had no maintenance in 3 yeats n my 2011 volt, and none in 2 1/2 tears n my 2nd, except free il anger and tire rotation. an fun to drive
 

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With gas so cheap operating a Volt as a hybrid is OK and if you're in flatland you'll almost be unaware of the ICE at speed.
Anecdote: G. E. acquired a bunch of early Gen 1's and users were given gas credit cards but no electricity cost allowance. Predictable result: cars were driven as hybrids, so at sale energy history showed practically no battery operation. (Except use of buffer charge at stop and slow speed). These used cars run just fine according to reports. Buy the car if it fits your body and budget.
 

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There are those who argue that hauling around the gasoline engine and all the gas to run it are a waste and that you should just buy a full BEV.

I would turn that argument around for your situation. Why buy the Volt with a fairly large battery taking up space and weight if you're rarely going to be able to use it?

You can get similar sized cars with similar gas mileage (40+ mpg) without some of the compromises a Volt requires, and for less money, even after rebates and incentives.

I personally would not buy a PHEV if I couldn't routinely take advantage of the ability to charge the battery fully.

Volt's a great car for what it is, but in my opinion there are much better choices if you're not going to be able to take advantage of its best feature, the large battery.

YMMV.

Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
 

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Our 2016 Volt does get great gas mpg just on the gas engine. Last three times we had to use the gas engine it returned an average 48.8 mpg. Plugging in and getting a true 50 miles on a charge if you pay low electric rates is the true reason for buying a Volt.
With our Volt a full charge of electricity, 16 KWH, which includes charging loss on our level 2 charger, cost $1.83.

Not many cars today average over 40 mpg in true real world driving, but if you can't plug in now maybe in the future you will be able to. Also if you check around you can buy a new Volt base model for less than $30,000 and with the Federal Tax Credit, if you qualify, brings the price down to the range of Civic or Corolla...
 

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Car selection is often more about want than need. Still at some point economics are a consideration for most people. The Volt is a good hybrid but you would be paying more for a feature that you can't really use. Not to say I don't see people doing similar things all the time. Such as the guy who drives a Jeep Wrangler with really big tires to work but rarely to maybe never goes off road.

It would be more justifiable if you think you might be in a situation where you could charge daily in the future. If not, you can always change cars if or when you situation changes. The Malibu hybrid and some of the Ford hybrids are good cars also.
 

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Before you make a final decision, download the plugshare app and look in your area--both at home and where you drive (like Vancouver) to see what public charging options are available. If you're able to squeeze in a charge at some of the places you frequent--without paying an exhorbitant amount--you might be able to drive more on electricity than you think.
 

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Being that it would rarely be driven within its electric range, I don't think the Volt would be the best car even if you could charge at your condo. I'd explore other vehicles with great fuel efficiency and low emissions until you can convince your HOA to let you install something, then look to get a Bolt.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Washington state has a high sales tax (almost 10%)-- but much of it (the first 32,000) is waived if you have an electric car that can get 30 miles through non-ICE means.

It is a shame that the new Prius Prime only gets 25 miles on electricity (but entitled to a 4,500 fed tax credit), otherwise it would be ideal with the nearby charger for me. In the meantime, it is the 2009 Civic for now, unless things change at the HOA
 

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Before you give up give ChargePoint a call, they have systems that are aimed at condo parking lots. ChargePoint will take care of the metering/billing and because they are designed for public and private parking lots there should be no liability issue. There would also be no problem installing additional EVSEs if your neighbors also bought EVs,
 

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Before you give up give ChargePoint a call, they have systems that are aimed at condo parking lots. ChargePoint will take care of the metering/billing and because they are designed for public and private parking lots there should be no liability issue. There would also be no problem installing additional EVSEs if your neighbors also bought EVs,
Heh. I was just looking at that, and it sounds like, based on the literature, that the stations can be set up to do things like "charge members of the public at $/hr or $/kwh" while at the same time "log condo owners usage for monthly billing" based on which card/account was presented to the machine.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Before you give up give ChargePoint a call, they have systems that are aimed at condo parking lots. ChargePoint will take care of the metering/billing and because they are designed for public and private parking lots there should be no liability issue. There would also be no problem installing additional EVSEs if your neighbors also bought EVs,
I filled out the chargepoint form, and explained the situation (including the HOA shooting down the plug issue). Chargepoint offers 1 million in liability insurance. It is just frustrating that I have to spend a lot of money (even if it some of it is reimbursable through a tax credit--I have no idea what the cost and reimbursables are) just to use an electrical outlet (and my bet is that it will still be shot down by the HOA unless I threaten to sue.
 
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