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Monthly Archives: July 2017

HID Lights

Before you begin installing your HID lights, make sure that the crews are installed in their respective holes. This will prevent possible mishaps during the assembly process, since the screws might unpredictably go in at an angle, which consequently makes it much harder to turn and install the screws later on. Immediately installing them in their housing can prevent these problems from ruining your day.

Now that you have done the screws, the first step to installing your HID lights is to remove the battery’s negative cable. Remove the headlamp’s top cover, and manually position the door in the mid-position to remove it. Look for the manual override knob on the inside corner of each headlamp, and raise it to remove the bezels and top cover easily. Next, remove the headlamp assembly using a 10mm socket and ratchet, and once you’ve removed the assembly, use a sharp razor knife to score the aluminum headlight. Once the headlight assembly is out of the way, slash the aluminum headlight bucket with a fine razor knife. The scored ribs must be removed to install the new HID headlight assembly.

Next, get your aluminum rib and break it off. After doing the first headlight bucket, tighten your vise grips when grabbing the aluminum to make sure that the edges are cleanly cut. Run the razor knife again if the aluminum does not break in your first try. After this, use a piece of two-sided tape to attach the ballast to the inner fender and strengthen the ballast by adding screws. Don’t cover the serial number on the backside in case you need to replace your ballast. And also, make sure the headlamp assembly fits without frictions happening on any of the cut aluminum ribs.

After you’ve done this, put the screws by reaching around the sides of the headlamp bucket. Make sure to place some soft rags or blankets around the hood and fender to prevent falling pieces from rubbing and scratching the headlamp housing on the paint.

Now you can install the screws to firmly hold the ballast on the inner fender. Don’t exert too much force when putting the screws in place because the inner fender is light and prone to breakage. Once all the screws are placed, secure them carefully. Be extra careful in this process, too. The screws can cut into the plastic and break off the plastic mounting ears.

Now loosen the coolant reservoir and remove the battery protector to route the wiring under the battery tray. The battery protector pops out easily. Just press the plastic pushpin along the windshield edge to pull it out. Then, tie the cross wire harness in place by using tie-wraps. Make sure that you are careful around the hood hinges, as the wiring can be nipped if you leave it unlatched.

Voltage Drop Testing

1. Connect your DVOM negative lead to the battery’s negative post.
2. Connect your DVOM positive lead to the battery’s positive post and measure its voltage. Record this reading.
3. Connect your DVOM positive lead to the positive side of the load being tested, as close to the load as possible.
4. Operate the circuit, and record your measurement.
5. Connect your DVOM positive lead to the negative side of the load being tested, as close to the load as possible.
6. Operate the circuit and record your measurement.

Let’s take a closer look at these steps. First, we want to test the integrity of the ENTIRE circuit so placing your test leads at the battery is a must. You can make an extension lead for your DVOM so you can always connect to the battery ground terminal with your negative meter lead. Second, it is important to know the source voltage available. If the battery is weak to start with, your circuit is already working with a handicap. Even better is to measure source voltage with the engine running, and use that as your baseline.

Energy Costs of Electric Cars

Petroleum prices have jumped during the last year and everybody is feeling the pain at the pump. Not a single soul is concerned about filling up the batteries of his next electric car with electricity. After all, you just plug the car into the next receptacle and there seem to be no appreciable costs.

Joe owns a Corvette, a high performance car manufactured by General Motors, which according to the car manufacturer drives 25 miles per gallon.

Joe’s monthly commute is 1000 miles, he drives very carefully, and actually achieves 25 MPG on his daily trip going to work and running errands. At $4.00 per gallon at the pump he is paying $160 for gasoline every month.

Joe is thinking about buying the Tesla, an electric sports car. He tried to find the cost of electricity for driving this car. He could not find any data anywhere. Joe knows that he must explain to his wife why he needs to save energy and money before buying the Tesla, a new, very fast electric sports car.

The Tesla will accelerate faster than his Corvette. There is no doubt that an electric vehicle can have a faster acceleration than a gasoline car. Electric motors and liquid fuel engines are just two different devices converting electric energy or petroleum fuel energy into mechanical energy. Electric motors can generate much higher torque at the wheels at much lower turning speeds.

In comparison, electric motors will have several shortcomings, too. They certainly will emit more pollutants and more carbon dioxide as long as coal is used for producing electric power. Overall energy efficiency of the electric car, from power plant to the road, is still worse than that of a modern automobile propelled by an advanced combustion engine.

The biggest drawback of electric cars is the small number of miles they can drive after a complete recharge. Additionally, the charging of an empty electric battery will take forever, high performance batteries are expensive, and will only have a limited life expectancy.

What about energy costs for driving an electric car compared to a gasoline powered car? Both vehicles will have to store energy. The electric car stores electric energy in its battery, the combustion engine powered car stores energy in the form of gasoline or diesel fuel in its fuel tank.

Now let us take a comparative look at the cost of storing and paying for enough electric energy or liquid fuel energy to drive 100 miles. Let us assume that both cars will have the same power requirements to drive 100 miles. In this respect the match-up between Tesla and Corvette is perfect. But how do we compare prices at the gas station with utility costs at the receptacle?

Energy contained in gasoline can be converted into mechanical energy only at the limited energy conversion efficiency of a typical heat engine. The Corvette engine will have an energy conversion efficiency of about 35%. (Fuel fired engines may eventually reach 50% peak energy conversion efficiency after decades of future advancements). Conversion efficiency of electric power from the receptacle into stored energy first and into mechanical energy later is much higher at about 85%.

About Tesla Electric Car

Ever since the early days of automobiles over a hundred years ago, electric cars have always been considered to be dull and boring. Oh sure, an electric car was fine if you only had a short commute or had to shop at the local grocery and couldn’t get there by foot or bicycle. But they were slow, ugly and hardly more than glorified golf carts.

But two Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning, have changed all that forever. They’ve designed an electric car that’s exciting to drive and gorgeous to look at!

The Tesla Roadster is a 100% electric, two-seater convertible that goes from zero to 60 mph in about 4 seconds, with a top speed of around 130 mph. It also has no clutch and a wide, flat torque curve, which means no matter which of the two gears you’re driving in or how fast you’re going, acceleration is instantaneous.

Whether you’re at a stoplight or on the interstate and want to pass the car in front of you, just step on the pedal and off you go like a shot.

The Toyota Prius, on the other hand, which is the best selling hybrid, takes over ten seconds to go from zero to 60. Of course, the Prius isn’t a sports car, but this comparison will give you an idea of just how efficient and well engineered an electric car can be. For example, the Tesla electric motor has only one moving part, yet it still cranks out 248 hp.

The car’s energy comes from 6,831 lithium ion batteries. These are the same batteries you use to charge your laptop or cell phone. It comes with a portable charging pack – in case you’re traveling more than 125 miles from home – and the batteries only take about 3 1/2 hours to fully charge.

By the way, the batteries are recyclable and Tesla guarantees them for five years or 100,000 miles.

However, if you want the thrill of owning the new Tesla, it’s going to cost you a 100 grand. But, if all goes according to plan, the price will come down as more cars are sold. They’ve already got a second more affordable sports sedan in the works.