App or method to easily track "fuel" economy of PHEV?

Discussion in 'PHEV or Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle' started by MPGee, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. MPGee

    MPGee Member

    Hi all,

    Anyone know of a good way to track PHEV "fuel" economy?

    There's tons of apps out there to log gasoline and diesel fuel consumption, but only one that I can see in the Apple app store that claims it does PHEVs (ezEV), but it's got too few ratings to even register a visible rating.

    I saw that Wayne had a post proclaiming the merits of keeping electricity and gas consumption numbers separate, but have any PHEV owners figure out a good way to keep tabs on their own consumption to keep score?

    I have only owned traditional ICE vehicles, but recently rented an extended range BMW i3 for the week. I have really enjoyed it, but I have no idea how I would keep stats on such a vehicle. As a hypermiler, it seems sacrosanct to drive without knowing how efficiently I am driving.

    I've been using the Fuelly app on iOS to track my gas usage with my own car. I tried adding the Chevy Bolt as an example, and yes, the app had an option for it. But it gives me the same gasoline logging screen for "fuel." :rolleyes:

    BillLin likes this.
  2. BillLin

    BillLin PV solar, geothermal HVAC, hybrids and electrics

    I agree that fuel source consumption should be kept distinct. One can always blend the results for a single number if needed.

    I'm too lazy to keep long-term data with any regularity. I tend to gauge current efficiency, whether on electricity or on gasoline, and if good enough for my personal goals, that's the end of that snapshot. I take as many snapshots as I feel are necessary for continual improvement or for ensuring the vehicle is performing well, keeping seasonal differences in mind.

    The following are the types of snapshots that I may record:

    - the PHEV is getting xx MPG in charge sustaining hybrid mode and xx is as good as or better than my target above EPA ratings

    - the PHEV or EV is getting y.y miles per kWh in EV mode and y.y is as good as or better than my target above EPA ratings

    If results are lower than personal targets, understand why and move on.

    You could go nuts and keep track of "well-to-wheel" figures if that's what you prefer.

    If your PHEV does not provide convenient numbers for EV efficiency and consumption, then you could measure the energy consumed by charging the battery. You can use an energy gauge like the Kill-a-Watt meter or something similar. There are wi-fi enabled, 110V switches (1500 W or better) that provide energy consumption data in a convenient app. You'll of course then be including the inefficiencies of the charging process if you use that measure.

    If you do daily charging at home on 110V, the above is not a bad way to go. If you're a member of one of the public charging networks, they probably provide usage statistics. I know ChargePoint does. I can look up stats for charge duration and energy consumed for every charging session since I became a member. It'll provide cost, too, if you actually pay for that charging. :D
  3. MPGee

    MPGee Member

    Thanks for your input, BillLin. Looks like I'll be making a spreadsheet if/when I get a PHEV.

    While I had my i3 rental, I did plug the EVSE into a Kill-a-Watt. I checked the cord and plugs for excessive heat several times, and it seemed OK. When I went to unplug the EVSE towards the end of my rental, I saw scorch marks around one of the two prongs on the Kill-a-Watt. :eek:

    I guess there's something to be said for having a professional installation of a level 2 charger..
    BillLin likes this.
  4. NeilBlanchard

    NeilBlanchard Well-Known Member

    Yes, measuring the electricity used in a charging session is the main challenge. I bought a Juicebox Pro 40 because it has a wireless data link, and so you can see how much each charge is.

    For an overall MPGe number, I have a copy of the spreadsheet used by the Automotive X-Prize, which has all types of fuel and electricity that can tell you the overall MPGe.
    BillLin likes this.

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