General Motors warns Chevrolet Bolt owners to park outside

General Motors Company (NYSE: GM) is an American multinational corporation headquartered in Detroit, Michigan. The company has three divisions: GM North America which sells Chevrolet and Cadillac brands. GM International which distributes vehicles in regions outside North America. GM South America which exports from Brazil. General Motors is urging owners of their Chevrolet Bolt electric vehicle to park outside. It is warning that the cars could have an increased risk of fire. The Bolt models, if charged with a ‘premium’ electrical connector powering 220 volts. Which has been used as a charging option by some commercial customers. The vehicles were recalled in April because the battery pack was exposed to coolant and could lead to a thermal event. GM investigated 29 incidents with smoke or melting plastic.

What actually it was?

The issue is not limited to GM. Nissan Motor Co Ltd also recalled more than 500,000 Leaf electric vehicles in 2013. It resulted after reports of lithium ion batteries catching fire or flames during recharging in Japan.

In response to a customer question on its website, General Motors said that it had “identified a condition where exposure to an uncommon over-voltage condition could result in an increased risk of fire.”

“Chevrolet Bolt customers with a vehicle generated complaint or concern, or their dealer, are encouraged to contact Chevrolet customer service at 1-800-222-1020,” GM said.

General Motors Co said it was working with the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Therefore, the automotive safety arm of the United Nations to investigate the issue. NHTSA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

After some Chevy Volt owners complained of damage to their cars from a metal-on-metal contact when they parked, General Motors has issued a warning for Chevrolet Bolt EV drivers in order to avoid this problem. The instructions are the same for all electric vehicle GM cars: park outside.

Have you ever wondered, why electric vehicles have so much more trouble with extreme decreases in voltage during charging than gasoline vehicles? While it may seem like an easy fix. Plug the car into your house’s 115v outlet and let it charge. Basically it’s not that simple with EVs because of the power flow from the wall socket and through their charging circuit on up to the battery.

Risks associated with electrical vehicle fires

Electrical vehicles can require their own unique care and maintenance. It includes safety measures for carefully using the charger cords to avoid developing fire hazards. It’s crucial to be aware of the risks that come with these vehicles. Also, how to be prepared for electrical malfunctions and how to deal with a fire should one occur.

This article is a detailed overview of the dangers presented by electricity in hybrid cars and electric cars. It explains how the technology works. what to look for and how to use your knowledge of these vehicles to prevent fires before they start?

Also Read: Cybersecurity in Business Environment: Role and Importance

The Basics of Electrical Vehicles

The first thing to understand about electrical vehicles is the technology that makes them work. On an ‘all-electric’ vehicle, such as a Tesla or a Smart, all of the car’s power comes from a battery. With a hybrid vehicle like a Prius or an electric/gasoline combination like the Chevrolet Volt. Some power comes from electricity stored in a battery while some is supplied by gasoline.

Any vehicle running on electricity is at risk of having the electricity go out. Many cars can be found with spark plugs – which are required for starting an engine – that could short-circuit if something happens to the electrical system inside your car. So, in addition to knowing how to check your car engine, you should familiarize yourself with the parts of your vehicle. Components that connect to electrical systems and keep them free of obstructions.

Looking for Electrical Problems

Once a fire has already started in an electrical car, it’s important to know which parts of the vehicle were responsible for starting it. Some fires start in the spark plugs, others in the battery or even in a component called a charger cord.

You might be thinking about the fuel efficiency and environmental impact when purchasing a new vehicle. You might have to make such a decision for your company. Gasoline engines emit CO2, nitrous oxide, as well as other greenhouse gases. Electric motors release zero emissions, which is why some cities are considering banning them from driving within the jurisdiction.

Electric vehicles also have lower maintenance costs. Because their parts last longer and are generally much cheaper than gasoline-powered cars. The only caveat is that they need charging stations at home or work for extended trips – which may not be a problem if you live in an urban area with ready access to chargers or want to get an electric car.

To help you decide which way to go, here are the pros and cons of owning electric vehicles (EVs) compared to gasoline-powered vehicles (GVs).

Lower cost of ownership

Maintenance

EVs have lower maintenance costs than GVs because they have fewer moving parts. While a nitrogen-filled GV should last about 3 years before needing a major repair. In comparison to an EV, it will likely last at least twice as long. The lithium-ion battery in an EV has to be replaced every 8 years or so. That’s still less expensive than purchasing new gas engines every 3 years. Plus, chargers for home use are relatively cheap and don’t require much maintenance.

Lower maintenance costs are on par with lower gas costs. While electric motors use less energy to run, they do need power to charge up. The electricity in most homes is generated using a variety of methods: oil, coal, natural gas and nuclear power. Around one-third of our electricity comes from burning fossil fuels. So the cost of generating electricity will depend on where you live and who provides your utility – not the EV itself.

Cost

On average, it costs $500 per year in fuel to drive a GV 5,000 miles. That’s the national average for unleaded gasoline at about $3.50 per gallon and an average vehicle MPG of 20 mpg (though most new cars are closer to 28 mpg).

Electricity for charging an EV is significantly cheaper. How much depends on where you live, but estimates around $100 to $150 per year. You can get a relatively accurate estimate of your EV’s charging costs by visiting the US Department of Energy’s fueleconomy.gov website. Though it requires some simple calculations and estimations on your part (for example, you’ll have to know how many miles you drive annually and how far you drive on a charge). If you use solar power, or live in a location that has wind-generated electricity, your EV will be even cheaper to fuel up.

It’s common knowledge that electric vehicles are more efficient than gas-powered cars and trucks. just what does it take to make an EV as efficient as possible?

That’s the question we’re going to answer, while also exploring the basic math behind how efficiency is calculated in the first place.

In order for an EV to be as efficient as possible, it needs a battery pack with minimal losses (or inefficiencies), a motor with high efficiency, regenerative braking, and low rolling resistance tires.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these components and see how they affect the efficiency of an electric vehicle.

The battery pack

One of the most significant inefficiencies in an EV is the battery pack. The battery pack accounts for about a quarter of the energy lost during charging. So if you’re driving an EV that uses lead-acid batteries, like a vintage electric car , you’re losing as much as 25% on every mile driven!

Walter Baker was an engineer for General Motors. In 1916 when he invented the nickel-iron battery; these early batteries were used to power electric vehicles such as street sweepers. By 1920, they had been replaced with lead-acid batteries. The lead-acid batteries of today are much more powerful than the NiCad batteries of 100 years ago. They still use a lot of energy for something that doesn’t require a lot of energy.

The efficiency on electric motors is very low and often fluctuates above or below 50%. Depending on several factors including power draw, temperature, current (I), voltage (V), and lawrence constant (K).

The efficiency of a motor varies by a  factor  of about 1% between 60% and 80% efficiency. As you can see in the graph below, as I increases from 5% to 95%, K increases from 4.6% to 5.2%.

Now that you know how efficiency is measured, let’s look at some of the things that affect it, such as resistance and current draw.

Rolling Resistance

The tires of an EV are just like the tires on a gas-powered car. They’re in direct contact with the ground and get worn down over time. The only real difference is that tires on an EV have significantly less rolling resistance because they don’t rely on air pressure to provide traction and grip.

Pneumatic tires use compressed air to help provide grip on loose surfaces. While also providing cushion when braking or driving over bumpy roads.

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