Towing with an electric vehicle - Fiberglass RV
Journey with Confidence RV GPS App RV Trip Planner RV LIFE Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Take a Speed Test Free 7 Day Trial ×


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 07-18-2022, 07:51 AM   #1
Member
 
Name: Steven
Trailer: Trillium
Indiana
Posts: 80
Registry
Towing with an electric vehicle

We now have a little real-world experience towing our 1978 Trillium 4500 with our 2022 Tesla Model Y Long Range. I'm happy to share our experiences, but also look forward to learning from others who tow fiberglass rvs with an electric vehicle.
We successfully completed a five day tour through Northern Indiana and Southeast Michigan yesterday. We camped one night at Potato Creek State Park and three nights at Tri-Ponds Campground near Allegan Michigan. We charged at both sites, utilizing a TT-30 adapter.
Two of the travel days were around 90 miles, which was no sweat with our rig. The last leg home was 150 miles, which I think may be near our limit without stopping to charge. Please understand that this is fairly flat Indiana and Michigan with optimal weather.
We did stop to charge once, but that was only because I had left my wallet at home and decided to make the 180 mile round trip home on morning number two. Another lesson learned.
Without that screw-up, we could have completed the trip (and side-trips) without using a Supercharger. I'm glad we needed the Supercharger stop as this was our first experience, and it was great.
As I said, both sites were 30 amp sites. This was adequate for our needs this time, but I'm going to try for 50 amp campsites when possible.
It was a real surprise how accurate the Tesla navigation predicted the energy required to each destination while towing. The navigation shows what percentage of battery will be left at the destination, and after towing a few miles, it was accurate to within a few percent. If the prediction is too low, the program adds a stop at a Supercharger along the route.
The only problem we experienced was on the first day the Tesla Charging Connector detected excessive heat at the plug into the TT-30 outlet. It automatically cut the current pull in half (12 amps) and sent a warning to check the connection to my phone. I disconnected, checked for corrosion in the plug, let it cool and reconnected (it resumed 24 amp charging). This recurred a few hours later, so I wonder if putting a little dielectric grease on the plug contacts might have prevented this.
Prior to the Tesla, we have towed with a 2015 Honda Odyssey. Both have a 3500 pound towing capacity, but the Tesla seems more stable and is all-wheel drive.
The Odyssey has the advantage of a large cargo area, so we may continue to tow with it when we take our bicycles. We're also unsure which vehicle to use when we plan longer adventures, especially out west where the charging infrastructure seems less developed at this time.
Attached Thumbnails
20220714_142135.jpg   20220713_132129.jpg  

Steve Hague is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2022, 08:46 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
ShelbyM's Avatar
 
Name: Shelby
Trailer: Casita SD
Tennessee
Posts: 891
Informative, thanks!
ShelbyM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2022, 12:22 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Name: Lee
Trailer: Casita
Texas
Posts: 493
Registry
Heres an informative video on this subject and the conclusion of the guys that made the video.
__________________
Lee
Captleemo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2022, 01:35 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
ShelbyM's Avatar
 
Name: Shelby
Trailer: Casita SD
Tennessee
Posts: 891
Yawn. Been there.... https://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/...son-99024.html
ShelbyM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2022, 01:39 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Radar1's Avatar
 
Trailer: 2020 Escape 19 (was 2005 16 ft Scamp Side Dinette and 2005 Fleetwood (Coleman) Taos pop-up)
Posts: 1,168
Registry
Thanks for the information. It seems right now the electric vehicles used for towing are best served by towing our smaller and lighter campers.
__________________
Dave (AKA John) and Marilyn
Sharpsburg, GA
04 Dodge Dakota V-8, 17 Dodge Durango V-6, 19 Ford Ranger 2.3 Ecoboost
radar1-scamping.blogspot.com
Radar1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-19-2022, 08:06 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Name: John
Trailer: T@B
British Columbia
Posts: 189
Great write up Steve. Thanks for the info. Glad to see another person towing with a model Y.

The navigation prediction for us was a little less accurate as we were towing in more extreme conditions. Wind, mountains etc. But I’m sure that will get better in time.

It will be nice to be able to compare notes with someone other than on Facebook.

Thanks again Steve.

Here’s a pic of our Tesla T@B 400 combo.

Travellers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-19-2022, 05:12 PM   #7
Member
 
Name: Steven
Trailer: Trillium
Indiana
Posts: 80
Registry
John,
I really like the look of your rig, I'm sure it turns a lot of heads going down the road. Looks to be quite aerodynamic. I look forward to hearing more of your experiences. Since you are pulling with a Tesla Model Y, you will appreciate this data.
Our first leg was pretty much cross country, county roads and some state and federal highway with 55 MPH speed limits. Distance was 93 miles and we used 425 Wh/mile.
I forgot to record our second leg.
The last leg (to home) was primarily interstate. I probably averaged 65 MPH, but that is just an estimate. We covered 150 miles with an average energy use of 465 Wh/mile.
I know this was pretty near optimal conditions and look forward to sharing data from less optimal conditions as the seasons change and we venture away from the flatlands.
Steve
Steve Hague is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-19-2022, 05:34 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Name: John
Trailer: T@B
British Columbia
Posts: 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Hague View Post
John,
I really like the look of your rig, I'm sure it turns a lot of heads going down the road. Looks to be quite aerodynamic. I look forward to hearing more of your experiences. Since you are pulling with a Tesla Model Y, you will appreciate this data.
Our first leg was pretty much cross country, county roads and some state and federal highway with 55 MPH speed limits. Distance was 93 miles and we used 425 Wh/mile.
I forgot to record our second leg.
The last leg (to home) was primarily interstate. I probably averaged 65 MPH, but that is just an estimate. We covered 150 miles with an average energy use of 465 Wh/mile.
I know this was pretty near optimal conditions and look forward to sharing data from less optimal conditions as the seasons change and we venture away from the flatlands.
Steve
Those are great numbers. The smaller profile works well for you. It will be fun to compare numbers because my numbers are in watt hours per kilometre and yours are in watt hours per mile. .

Our most efficient run was 320 watt hours per kilometreÖand Iíll let you do the conversion. But I think itís around 540 watt hours per mile. Iíll see if I can put a screen shot up later.
Travellers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-19-2022, 05:48 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Name: John
Trailer: T@B
British Columbia
Posts: 189
Found it. Remember, this is watt hours per kilometre. 90 kilometres per hour. (56 mph) it shows 124 kilometres of range left at 50 percent on the battery. Sounds about right. But I can also say it was common to see 360 watt hours per mile as well. Depends on conditions I guess.

Travellers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2022, 10:09 AM   #10
Senior Member
 
DeanCHS1980's Avatar
 
Name: Dean
Trailer: Casita
Kentucky
Posts: 731
Registry
Hi Steve,

Congratulations on getting the Tesla. Thanks for the camping/towing update.

Hope to see you guys again in the campground sometime soon!

Take care,

Dean
__________________
Laura & Dean | '05 Casita 17' FD | '09 Kia Borrego Limited V8 2WD
DeanCHS1980 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2022, 10:26 AM   #11
Member
 
Trailer: 16 ft Casita
Posts: 59
I will never own electric vehicles first off truck big enough to pull my trailer cost 80,000 dollars and range of 150 miles and most campgrounds will not allow you to charge them .
johnlochbuie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2022, 10:33 AM   #12
Senior Member
 
Name: John
Trailer: T@B
British Columbia
Posts: 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnlochbuie View Post
I will never own electric vehicles first off truck big enough to pull my trailer cost 80,000 dollars and range of 150 miles and most campgrounds will not allow you to charge them .
Yah to each their own John. Everybody has different wants and needs for transportation and tow vehicles.

But re charging. Our experience has been the opposite of yours. So far we have never been told no when we ask about charging. The only common request is that only one thing gets plugged in at a time. And one had a 10 dollar surcharge and you had to rent a 50 amp site. We donít need a 50 amp site so we declined.

Some campgrounds are already putting it out there on the various apps that they support electric vehicle charging so Iím sure it will catch on as it draws business.

Cheers and safe travels.
Travellers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2022, 12:30 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
ShelbyM's Avatar
 
Name: Shelby
Trailer: Casita SD
Tennessee
Posts: 891
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnlochbuie View Post
I will never own electric vehicles....
That's OK. They sell all they can build to folks who want them.
ShelbyM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2022, 01:55 PM   #14
Junior Member
 
Name: Steve
Trailer: Casita
Alabama
Posts: 15
I think thatís pretty neat if you plan your trip well have lots of time and charge at campgrounds you travel for free.
StevenMaria is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2022, 02:36 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
Jon in AZ's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
Posts: 11,361
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by StevenMaria View Post
I think thatís pretty neat if you plan your trip well have lots of time and charge at campgrounds you travel for free.
Hardly free, considering the high price of admission to ownership of a tow-ready EV. "Free" charging with the price of a campsite is likely a short-lived benefit for early adopters.
Jon in AZ is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2022, 03:45 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
Name: John
Trailer: T@B
British Columbia
Posts: 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
Hardly free, considering the high price of admission to ownership of a tow-ready EV. "Free" charging with the price of a campsite is likely a short-lived benefit for early adopters.
Depends. Probably the most common EV towing vehicle right now is a Tesla model Y with a tow package. So 60 thousand bucks USD plus tax. Pretty much everyone towing with a model Y though is towing a teardrop trailer of some kind. Good combo for us.

I don’t think I would plan charging around campsites, but when we are touring we often travel no more than 50 to 150 kilometres every day. Those days I suppose one could do most charging at a 30 amp campsite. Lots of times we are dry camping in provincial parks though so a lot of our charging is done at superchargers or DC fast chargers. Still relatively cheap though.

We have towed about 12000 kilometres this year so far. I would say about a third is freebie charging. Family members driveways. Touristy, L2 chargers and campgrounds. But the other 2/3 would be superchargers etc.

Lots of half ton electric pickups hitting the road right now. They will be the dominant ev towing vehicles soon.

Jmho. Not an expert.
Travellers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2022, 04:45 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
John in Santa Cruz's Avatar
 
Name: John
Trailer: Escape 21, behind an '02 F250 7.3 diesel tug
Mid Left Coast
Posts: 2,809
Quote:
Originally Posted by Travellers View Post
... Lots of times we are dry camping in provincial parks though so a lot of our charging is done at superchargers or DC fast chargers. ....
I haven't seen a supercharger yet that would support driving through with a trailer. and most, if you tried to pull in with a trailer behind you, you would be blocking the whole parking lot behind you.
John in Santa Cruz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2022, 06:16 PM   #18
Senior Member
 
Name: John
Trailer: T@B
British Columbia
Posts: 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by John in Santa Cruz View Post
I haven't seen a supercharger yet that would support driving through with a trailer. and most, if you tried to pull in with a trailer behind you, you would be blocking the whole parking lot behind you.
Hi John. Yah we haven't been to a single pull thru Supercharger on our travels in Canada although I see pictures of them in the US quite often. We just don't rate up here

Anyway, I would say about a third of the superchargers we have used have had trailer stalls. They work for short trailers like ours but if the cybertruck ever hits the road the trailers are going to get bigger.

Ill put up a few pics of our rig in various superchargers across Canada. I would say we have had to disconnect less than 6 or 7 times...maybe 8. Our rule was that if there was a chance we would inconvenience somebody by blocking stalls we just unhooked. So here are a few pics, mostly superchargers and a few public chargers, all level 3. Keep in mind we are retired so we mostly travel when everyone is at work, so quite often superchargers were quiet. Here we go...in no particular geographical order.

I believe this was in southeastern ontario. Most of these were pretty good although a few of them caused our tail to stick out a bit. We had traffic cones for those situations. These are usually in mall or strip mall parking lots.



I believe this was in Canmore Alberta. We saw 4 or 5 like this with back access. It worked...but wouldn't want a longer trailer.



This is in Sault St Marie on the Canada side. Cool shot. Just a little Supercharger. We made it work.



This one is Coburg Ontario...I think... Less chance of a problem when they are this size...as long as its not a long weekend.



This one is in southern BC...somewhere.... Maybe Castelgar. This is a FLO station. Kinda slow at 50 KW but actually a slow charger is kinda handy at lunch as you don't have to scarf down your meal to beat the charge complete text.



This one is Drummondville Quebec. We used it twice, once on the way in and once on the way back. Worked out good but this was actually a fairly busy little supercharger. Thought for sure I was going to have to move at one point.



And speaking of Quebec city. Go. Its amazing.



And one non DC fast charger location. This is Waterton Lakes national park. The Canadian side. We were here for four or five days and sucked up 10 or 15 kwh per day while touring around the area. We used our own EVSE and TT30 adapter in campgrounds except for one campground that had a level 2 destination charger. This was a 30 amp site although I figured out on the last day the opposite side of the post had a 50 amp plug. We only paid for a 30 amp site so that's what we used.



And one more vanity shot. See the other end of that lake? That is the United States of America Very cool national park. Lots of hiking. I think we coughed up a lung getting to this viewpoint. Highly worth it....I guess



Hope that helps John.

Cheer and happy travels.
Travellers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-01-2022, 06:37 AM   #19
Member
 
Name: Steven
Trailer: Trillium
Indiana
Posts: 80
Registry
Second EV camping trip

Still newbies at this, but we towed our Trillium 4500 to the Northern Indiana Vintage Trailer Rally last week. We camped on a 30 amp site again. I called ahead to make certain that it was OK to charge our Tesla Model Y Long Range at the campsite and they replied that we could. They even looked up our reservation to make certain that it was a 30 amp site.
We left home charged at 100%, drove 76 miles mostly on 2-lane highways at 55-65 mph, and arrived at the campsite with 57% battery capacity remaining (427 Wh/mile).
We were the only fiberglass trailer in attendance, so we were a bit of a curiosity, though I was surprised that several were familiar with Trilliums and fiberglass rvs in general. There were two 1970's fiberglass motor homes (FMC for one). Must have been huge molds they came out of. Of course, we were asked many questions about EV towing as many of the small vintage stickies were of similar size and weight. I shared what little I know at this time and had several interesting and hopeful discussions on the future of rv travel.
On the first day of charging at the TT-30 post I again experienced a reduction from 24 amp to 12 amp charging. I stopped charging and applied dielectric grease to the plug and recepticle and was able to charge at 24 amp. I'm not sure whether the dielectric grease did the trick, but it didn't hurt.
I intentionally only charged to 90% on the morning we departed. We took a different, but similar route home, travelling 85 miles using 443 Wh/mile and arrived home with 38% charge remaining.
We have some longer trips planned this fall that will require charging along the way. Those should be more interesting. I appreciate hearing from the more experienced and adventurous.
Steve
Attached Thumbnails
20220728_230652.jpg   20220729_114753.jpg  

20220731_140002.jpg  
Steve Hague is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-01-2022, 07:18 AM   #20
Senior Member
 
ShelbyM's Avatar
 
Name: Shelby
Trailer: Casita SD
Tennessee
Posts: 891
Thanks
ShelbyM is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Latest Electric Tow Vehicle honda03842 Towing, Hitching, Axles and Running Gear 18 08-07-2015 04:19 PM
Propane & Electric vs Just Electric Wallo Care and Feeding of Molded Fiberglass Trailers 75 03-06-2014 06:24 PM
All Electric Tow Vehicle? Art Davis General Chat 3 04-16-2008 02:27 PM
All electric, or gas and electric? Homer Teitsma Electrical | Charging, Systems, Solar and Generators 24 10-07-2007 11:10 AM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:27 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions Inc.