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Poll: Do you have, or plan to get, an electric car?

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Do you have an electric car or plan to get one?

  • Yes

  • No

  • I plan to

  • Over my dead body


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bleme

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In my research, I found a several articles (like this one) on Leaf's not lasting 100,000 miles. I also found a 2013 Leaf with 75,000 miles on it for $5000 so I used that to crank the numbers.

That Leaf should have 25,000 miles on it before I need to spend $6265 for another 100,000 miles. $5,000+$6265=$11,265. Divided by 125,000 miles is $.09012 per mile. Compared to my current Nissan's 35mpg gets me the equivalent of a gallon of gas for $3.15 and I haven't paid for electricity yet. Scratch that Leaf off my list and keep looking I guess.

I also found a Prius for $2500 that needed a battery, and several companies selling the replacement battery (all on Craigslist), but I haven't run numbers on that one yet. My gut says it's a 'pass' too though.
 

Kent88

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I keep forgetting about Nissan. I grew up with GM vehicles, and my wife grew up with Chrysler. I'm pretty happy with my GM-made car. Looking forward to the hybrid Jeeps that should be out within a few years.

A buddy of mine has been keeping track of Nissans. He tells me that the aftermarket battery options for Nissans is pretty good. He has been considering picking up a used Leaf and installing a new battery.
 

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@bleme The article you posted was written about the time my buddy let me test drive his 2012 Leaf. He was telling me at the time how he noticed his battery was starting to degrade. He got it replaced a few months later under warranty and told me it would have cost $6k if it had been out of pocket. Its still his daily commuter and hasnt had any issues since. According to him, just charging at home means an extra $20-40/mo on their electric bill with SoCal Edison rates. With the exception of the battery, He’s essentially done nothing to the car other than A set of brake pads and a few sets of tires. A set of pads will generally last 60-100k if your careful with the regen.

As for a used Prius, I’ve come across these videos that might be worth a watch.
Chrisfix:

Savage Scotty
 

AzOr

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Ask taxi drivers if the Prius battery is an issue. I talked to a driver on my way to airport and the Prius we were in had just shy of 300k miles on the original battery.
he said that when it needs changing there are cheaper batteries available andthe cost of replacing is less than $1,500. I’m assuming he gets a discount but that’s still far from the belief that they only last 150k miles and replacement batts cost 6k.
 

AzOr

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@bleme The article you posted was written about the time my buddy let me test drive his 2012 Leaf. He was telling me at the time how he noticed his battery was starting to degrade. He got it replaced a few months later under warranty and told me it would have cost $6k if it had been out of pocket. Its still his daily commuter and hasnt had any issues since. According to him, just charging at home means an extra $20-40/mo on their electric bill with SoCal Edison rates. With the exception of the battery, He’s essentially done nothing to the car other than A set of brake pads and a few sets of tires. A set of pads will generally last 60-100k if your careful with the regen.

As for a used Prius, I’ve come across these videos that might be worth a watch.
Chrisfix:

Savage Scotty
I actually like watching his videos but the guy is all over the map when it comes to his advice.
 

bleme

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Ask taxi drivers if the Prius battery is an issue. I talked to a driver on my way to airport and the Prius we were in had just shy of 300k miles on the original battery.
he said that when it needs changing there are cheaper batteries available andthe cost of replacing is less than $1,500. I’m assuming he gets a discount but that’s still far from the belief that they only last 150k miles and replacement batts cost 6k.
The Craigslist seller quotes:
A 1-Year warranty ($950).
A 2-Year warranty ($1275)
A 3-Year warranty ($1550).
A 4-Year warranty ($1900).
And a 5-Year warranty ($2399).

But with a Prius you also have to figure all the ICE side too, so it isn't as easy to calculate as a pure EV.
 

NGD

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@Kent88 thank you for posting that video. They essentially came to the same conclusion I did as to why we went with Hybrid vs full-EV. My recent trip to west Yellowstone in an older Camry averaged 75 mph. Those speeds combined with the Nevada and Idaho desert temps would have meant plenty of charging time instead of a quick stop to fill up and go. Even in the Prime, the engine kicks on at 85. I have to say Toyota really screwed up with their dash display compared to most other EVs. Theres hardly any useful info regarding operating temps, battery capacity vs charge etc. its like PEV for
idiots. Unless theres a scary light flashing, dont worry bout it.

@AzOr Which video, Chris or Scotty? Also I think you might be getting the battery prices between a Prius and a Leaf mixed. I believe the standard prius has a 4.5kWh battery. My prime has an 8.8kWh. I think the leaf battery is 3X larger than the Prime. Still, $4500 for a new prius battery is steep.
 

AzOr

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@Kent88 thank you for posting that video. They essentially came to the same conclusion I did as to why we went with Hybrid vs full-EV. My recent trip to west Yellowstone in an older Camry averaged 75 mph. Those speeds combined with the Nevada and Idaho desert temps would have meant plenty of charging time instead of a quick stop to fill up and go. Even in the Prime, the engine kicks on at 85. I have to say Toyota really screwed up with their dash display compared to most other EVs. Theres hardly any useful info regarding operating temps, battery capacity vs charge etc. its like PEV for
idiots. Unless theres a scary light flashing, dont worry bout it.

@AzOr Which video, Chris or Scotty? Also I think you might be getting the battery prices between a Prius and a Leaf mixed. I believe the standard prius has a 4.5kWh battery. My prime has an 8.8kWh. I think the leaf battery is 3X larger than the Prime. Still, $4500 for a new prius battery is steep.
I was referring to Scotty’s videos. I didn’t watch this clip but have seen his videos on the Prius where he stated the cost of batteries at 4 or 5k (going by memory).
I guess my point is that if cabbies are using them with well over 200k in original batteries, I wouldn’t hesitate to pick up an older used Prius if I were looking for a commuter.
In fact, a couple of years ago my wife was looking for a car and we were on the lookout for a Prius V because we needed the extra space. They were hard to find on the used market compared to the regular sized Prius. She ended up getting an ICE Camry.
 
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RePete

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The Nissan Leafs are fairly notorious for battery degradation, aren't they? They don't have a system to manage battery temperature, while other EVs do. I have seen used ones advertised locally for low prices, and have assumed the battery was shot. Might still be ok for making short trips.
 

Kent88

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@Kent88 thank you for posting that video. They essentially came to the same conclusion I did as to why we went with Hybrid vs full-EV. My recent trip to west Yellowstone in an older Camry averaged 75 mph. Those speeds combined with the Nevada and Idaho desert temps would have meant plenty of charging time instead of a quick stop to fill up and go. Even in the Prime, the engine kicks on at 85.
EVs have room for improvement when considering road trips. They're getting there. But it's why I went with a Volt. My spouse and I test drove a Bolt, but when I did the math I discovered that we couldn't drive to and from our hometowns on a single charge, and we couldn't charge up enough on 110v in a weekend to make it back, and we didn't think we could convince our parents to install fast chargers. So the range extender made sense.

Since then I discovered that her hometown put in a convenient public fast charger (it might even be free). My hometown still lacks one. Or at least the right one, there is a Tesla charger that we could use, but it still isn't that convenient and the only thing I would consider overpaying Elon for is a solar roof. But that's another topic.

My Volt, though, functions as an EV an overwhelming majority of the time March through November. In the time I have owned it it has made only two trips a Bolt couldn't have handled without spending significant time at a level two charger. And both those trips could have easily been handled by our Jeep.
 

Bilsch

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Sorry, my mistake in omitting nuclear..... Semantics...
Point is that only 17% of the electricity to recharge your electric vehicle comes from renewable energy sources.

And show me where lithium batteries are at least mostly recyclable.
May I direct you to your own post, #101, where you mentioned EV carbon footprint. Last time I checked nuclear does not produce any carbon emissions so... thats 39% of the grid that is not producing CO2. I'm a big fan of Nuclear precisely because it isn't causing global warming. I think we should have more electricity made this way.

Ok how about this place.
or this one
or here
 

Kent88

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My thoughts exactly. Until there is an evolution in battery technology and charge times; EVs will be better served for errands and short trips.
Depends on your definition of "short", I suppose. I think one really has to look at what their existing vehicle does, where they typically drive in a week, how frequently they have an outlier week where they need to drive further, what their charging options are, and what EVs are capable of handling that.

To limit EVs to errands and short trips risks selling EVs short :)

And there is some pretty cool battery tech on the horizon. I'm sure it is obvious right now that I mostly follow GM, and it sounds like they're about two years away from a huge improvement in their batteries.
 

bwarbiany

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My thoughts exactly. Until there is an evolution in battery technology and charge times; EVs will be better served for errands and short trips.
Depends on your definition of "short", I suppose. I think one really has to look at what their existing vehicle does, where they typically drive in a week, how frequently they have an outlier week where they need to drive further, what their charging options are, and what EVs are capable of handling that.
Also note that there's always the option of a rental car. As I mentioned, my current life doesn't allow for an EV. There are just none in the size/price/capability class that I could have one for a daily driver. But when the kids are out of the house, or if EV options proliferate to allow for a 3-row vehicle in a reasonable price range, it could come into play.

So then I look at it as a question... Let's say once or twice a year I'm going to be making a long-distance road trip where I don't want the time penalty of charging. For me, that trip is from SoCal to Southern Oregon. 800 miles each way, can be done in under 12 hours counting gas/food/potty stops, but not including charging. Is the cost of rental cheap enough where I can justify renting a car given the savings I might be getting for driving an EV otherwise?

Right now, no. My used low-miles Ford Flex Limited was $26K. Even counting all the gas I'll spend on that for its lifetime, it's a better financial play than either a Tesla Model X or an Audi Etron, the vehicles that size-wise are (sorta but not quite) in its comparables.

But when we're empty-nesters, when EV costs come down, maybe it'll make sense for me to get an EV as an around-town vehicle and if once or twice a year I need to rent a car to go the long haul, then so be it.
 

bwarbiany

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@bleme I get where you're coming from. As it relates to a pure cost perspective, and probably to an environmental perspective, buying a cheaper high-MPG high-mileage used car like a Honda Civic is probably a better idea than an EV. You'll never recoup the cost of a Tesla vs a <$5K Civic in gas prices, and if you're buying a used car, all of the environmental damage of producing the car is a sunk cost that isn't your responsibility.

That said, from the perspective of the average American, who replaces their car more frequently and doesn't buy high-mileage used cars, the calculation is completely different. Someone who is looking for a brand new BMW 325i might be also looking at a Tesla Model 3, and that consumer will be making decisions on a completely different basis than you are.

That's not to say you're wrong! Buying cheap used cars and driving them until they die is probably the cheapest mode of transportation that exists, and I'm not sure it's environmentally a bad option--if there was no market for those cars, we'd have to build new ones which is environmentally damaging. But your situation is different than a lot of people, and it would be good for you to factor that into your discussion on the topic...
 

Kent88

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Well, hadn't thought of rental cars for those outliers.

I could've bought a Bolt after all. As I've said, my wife and I almost never go on road trips at the same time, and we already have a big Jeep that we are used to taking on road trips.

It's exceptionally rare that neither of our vehicles are within 40 miles of our house. So yeah, a rental car for a road trip once every few years, it's worth considering. At least in my case.

Not that I'm looking to buy/trade anytime soon. Neither of my vehicles have hit 30,000 miles yet.
 

RePete

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Well, hadn't thought of rental cars for those outliers.

I could've bought a Bolt after all. As I've said, my wife and I almost never go on road trips at the same time, and we already have a big Jeep that we are used to taking on road trips.

It's exceptionally rare that neither of our vehicles are within 40 miles of our house. So yeah, a rental car for a road trip once every few years, it's worth considering. At least in my case.

Not that I'm looking to buy/trade anytime soon. Neither of my vehicles have hit 30,000 miles yet.
My friend who bought a Bolt said from the start that he would rent a car if needed for a long trip. So far he hasn’t needed one.

I was just reading about a Volt that has 468k miles on the odometer. I think they will hold up well. The tax credit was a big incentive for me, and the main reason I went ahead and bought another. Otherwise I would still be driving the first one. I will probably keep this one and drive it for a long time.
 

Kent88

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Is the tax credit still going for the Bolt? Do you know if the upcoming Bolt EUV be considered a different enough vehicle that it gets the full tax credit, or do existing Bolt sales count against it?
 

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I believe the federal tax credits for chevy are either very reduced or have run out. State and local tax credits are likely a different story. It was one of the reasons we bought last Sept instead of waiting a longer. Saved us a few pennies
 

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I believe the federal tax credits for chevy are either very reduced or have run out. State and local tax credits are likely a different story. It was one of the reasons we bought last Sept instead of waiting a longer. Saved us a few pennies
That is correct. Chevy has used up all of their credits as of about March 2020. Even then they were reduced from the full credit.
 

RePete

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Is the tax credit still going for the Bolt? Do you know if the upcoming Bolt EUV be considered a different enough vehicle that it gets the full tax credit, or do existing Bolt sales count against it?
They were mostly used up from Volt sales. It’s based on EV sales for an entire company, not individual models. In lieu of that, Chevy is offering incentives which are about the same amount.
 

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I'm just going to put this here.

Cool PR stunt, but it doesn't prove what Tesla's marketing department thinks it proves.

I say "marketing department" because I refuse to believe that Tesla engineers actually think this demonstration would impress anybody who paid attention in high school physics class.

The Ford probably weighs about 5,000 lbs and for some reason they picked a model with only rear wheel drive.

I don't know what the Tesla weighs, but with its rugged construction and battery pack, it's going to be at least 7,500 lbs, maybe over 8,000 lbs.

With standard unloaded weight distribution, only about 35% of the Ford's weight is carried by the rear (driven) axle. Which in this case would equate to about 0.35 x 5000 = 1,750lbs.

The Tesla's entire 7500(ish) lbs weight is supported by driven axles because both axles are driven.

The static coefficient of friction for a rubber tire on dry road is about 0.8. This is important because it places physical limits on how much tractive force each vehicle can put down to the road before the onset of tire slippage.

Max tractive force (Ford) = coefficient of friction x load on driven axle = 0.8 x 1,750 = 1,400 lbs

Max tractive force (Tesla) = coefficient of friction x weight of vehicle = 0.8 x 7,500 = 6,000 lbs

As we can see, the laws of physics say that the Tesla can transmit much more force to the road - and thus "pull the Ford - just by virtue of the fact that it's heavier and has 4 wheel drive. In other words, the flashy results of this demonstration show absolutely nothing meaningful about the brute strength (or lack thereof) of either truck's propulsion system.

Another thing I find humorous about this demonstration is that it almost looks like they've got the trucks on an incline, presumably to lend the impression that the Tesla is not only pulling the Ford around, but doing so UPHILL! In reality, if the road is indeed slanted, it's actually handicapping the Ford because in that orientation even less of the vehicle's weight is on the rear axle, and less traction is available.

There are clear and unquestionable advantages to electric traction motors vs. internal combustion engines, particularly in low-speed torque showdowns like this. Which is why I find it rather disappointing that Tesla would resort to an obvious sleight of hand like this demonstration to generate publicity. But I suppose they probably have a few million wrapped up in that prototype and don't want to abuse it too much. There's also the "no publicity is bad publicity" angle as well.
 

NGD

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@mattdee1 Still looks cool and even trended for a few days..which was likely the intention. Teslas marketing dept are good at their jobs.
 

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The electricity produced is by fossil fuel and the batteries are toxic when disposal time comes. It’s a false sense of ‘green’ to buy an elec car.
 

NGD

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@mattdee1 for some reason or another this part didn't post. Likely a user ID-10T error.

I also found it interesting that they used a 2wd ford f-150. Judging by the weight and power, an f-350 or f-450 would have been a better equivalent. i’m sure ot had nothing to do with the f-150 being the best selling truck in America at the time.
 

NGD

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A bit OT, but for the others with PEV’s how does the charging mode affect your mileage while your driving. By this I mean the engine charging while driving and not regen from the brakes. Toyota has a “charging” mode that diverts a significant portion of the power to the battery, but absolutely kills your mileage (roughly 35mpg) if your driving at highway speeds (for me thats 70-80mph). Curious what the Rex, Volts etc do for this. I’m honestly not sure WTH toyotas charging mode is supposed to do except keep the battery pack from getting to low.
I tried this on a roadtrip before I found out that the prime will indeed recharge at 70 if on flat ground in hybrid mode. I can drive 200 miles in hybrid mode and end up a few percentage points higher while getting 60-65mpg.
 

RePete

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A bit OT, but for the others with PEV’s how does the charging mode affect your mileage while your driving. By this I mean the engine charging while driving and not regen from the brakes. Toyota has a “charging” mode that diverts a significant portion of the power to the battery, but absolutely kills your mileage (roughly 35mpg) if your driving at highway speeds (for me thats 70-80mph). Curious what the Rex, Volts etc do for this. I’m honestly not sure WTH toyotas charging mode is supposed to do except keep the battery pack from getting to low.
I tried this on a roadtrip before I found out that the prime will indeed recharge at 70 if on flat ground in hybrid mode. I can drive 200 miles in hybrid mode and end up a few percentage points higher while getting 60-65mpg.
The Volt has 4 modes. Normal, Sport, Mountain, or Hold. Hold uses the engine and maintains current charge. Sport is fun, but uses more battery.

Mountain builds charge if the batteries are depleted, but only up about 50%. The engine seems to run at a faster pace than it normally would. It doesn't save fuel, but is more designed to provide extra power for going up long inclines.
 

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I guess there’s more than one opinion on the matter. I evidently don’t share yours. 😂
Yes there certainly are lots of opinions on the subject. And thank you for the video from 2016. Here is one more recent. P.S. When I was in grade school in the mid 70's, we still had text books that said, "Someday we will put a man on the moon". :)

 
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kh54s10

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When I was looking at getting my car I did wonder whether I'd be stuck replacing the high-voltage battery someday.

While I was car shopping I spoke to a Volt owner who had driven his car for over 200,000 miles and had never had an issue with his high-voltage battery. He wanted to buy another Volt and have one of his kids start driving the old one when he got his license.

Then I saw this. The GM exec did exaggerate the claim, but even after they clarified what Barra meant, it still sounds like the batteries are pretty solid. And as I was looking for a new or gently used vehicle, and I only intend to put 120,000 miles on it (give or take) before selling/trading it, I figured I was in pretty good shape.
There are miles, recharge cycles and time... The differences on whether you would need to replace the battery in your time could vary dramatically.
 

kh54s10

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May I direct you to your own post, #101, where you mentioned EV carbon footprint. Last time I checked nuclear does not produce any carbon emissions so... thats 39% of the grid that is not producing CO2. I'm a big fan of Nuclear precisely because it isn't causing global warming. I think we should have more electricity made this way.

Ok how about this place.
or this one
or here
Nuclear has it's own problems, making it's "green" footprint questionable, but you are right it doesn't add to co2 footprint. I am torn on nuclear. It is clean, with a couple of exceptions it is safe, but there is the problem to do with storing the waste material.

But again semantics... Arguing over the percentage still doesn't negate that electric vehicles still contribute to co2 production.

2 of those three links do not say what percentage is recyclable, the third says near 100% But they are talking of all types of recyclable batteries. They also don't say what is in the rest, how toxic it may be and what they do with it.
 

Kent88

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There are miles, recharge cycles and time... The differences on whether you would need to replace the battery in your time could vary dramatically.
Sure there are differences, and odd things can happen. I could hit a deer with it tomorrow.

But it seems pretty rare that GM high-voltage EV batteries need to be replaced. And in many cases it seems like GM has owned up to it before it became a big issue for the vehicle owners.

Over 200,000 vehicles with batteries, and the replacements from suspected wear outs is a tenth of a percent.

I think it took me 8 years to rack up the kind of miles on my last car that it'll take for me to trade this one off. It's possible I'll have to replace the battery, but it seems unlikely.

Won't know until either it happens or I trade it. And heck, it might be that by the time my car's battery wears out that the price of new batteries will have dropped.

Edit: this is all about what I have seen / read about so far. Obviously these batteries won't last forever.
 
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I guess there’s more than one opinion on the matter. I evidently don’t share yours. 😂


enjoy:

I do think that it is interesting that the two videos reach two different conclusions. And this video does not take into account the building of the car and mining the lithium. That said it's still good information. Same with Solar Panels. I like the technology and what it can do though I think it is still not as
efficient as it needs to be to make a real difference.

While I would like an electric car it is not to be more green, its for the technology side of it. Though I don't really trust Elon Musk and Tesla's Privacy Policy, though it is far better than Google's (Lack of) Privacy Policy.
 

Kent88

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... This video does not take into account the building of the car and mining the lithium. That said it's still good information. Same with Solar Panels. I like the technology and what it can do though I think it is still not as
efficient as it needs to be to make a real difference.
Not really sure about the differences in pollution produced by building ICE vehicles vs EVs. I would expect that they're not very different.

Fossil fuel extraction and handling, isn't terribly clean, never has been.

I'm far from an expert on fossil fuel collection vs lithium mining.

And I don't think you'd get an argument from anyone that solar should become more efficient, but it's already pretty darn efficient, and has a lot of potential to become more efficient.
 

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Do some research into PragerU. The position the video takes on this isn't the least bit surprising. I don't know about the other one.
 
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NGD

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And I don't think you'd get an argument from anyone that solar should become more efficient, but it's already pretty darn efficient, and has a lot of potential to become more efficient.
They are actually quite inefficient. Best panels on the market currently are 20-23% efficient with an average loss between 0.5-0.8% efficiency per year. I wish it was better because half my home is shaded by tall redwood trees for half the day and kills any ROI I could get on purchasing a solar system.
 
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