Electric Vehicle Charging Station: Bring your Tesla (or Volt!) to Spokane. . .

The Odell House Lodging, operated as a B&B, offers furnished apartments for both short and longer stays.

http://www.theodellhouse.com/

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Built in 1898, on the Registry of Historic Places, the house has a history of cutting edge technology: telephone, gas, electric and public sewer from its inception–it now has an electric vehicle charging station.

(Never mind laying hens and an organic vegetable garden for guest use. And a very comfortable Gazebo to sit in and read or check your mail;)

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What do you need to charge your EV here at the Odell House?

First, we need to know you are coming so the right area for your car will be clear and ready.

Call us 8 AM to 8PM and ask if it is available.  (It probably is.) 509 879-4619

Or, you can reserve the charger yourself:  https://reservations.frontdeskanywhere.net/odellhouse/

(We put a default cost of $10 on the reservation form.  Charging is free to our guests and they will not be billed.  We really do appreciate donations from folks who just drop by to charge.  Power is pretty inexpensive here, but as you probably know, it costs over a thousand dollars just to install these chargers. Amusingly, the only “drop-in” charger who did not generously assist our cause of helping their travels, was a pair of “investigative journalists” who arrived in a donated Tesla model S, sporting a large dent. :(  They were promoting their new movie about fracking.  We gave them a pass on cheapness, not being particular fans of fracking ourselves, but are still entertained by the memory.)

What’s the equipment like?

40 amp 240 volt (NEMA 6-50P) plug, supplying GE Watt Station charger.

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Our design was for overnight guests, who in less than the time it takes to get a decent sleep, can have a fully-charged car for travel the next day.

Where are we located?

On the map below, left side at the star, just west of downtown Spokane.   The nearest exit from I-90 is Maple/Walnut WA I-90 EXIT #280  We are only ten blocks from the highway: north on Walnut, left on Second,  right on Cannon and cutting over two streets north will get you to First.

The circle on the map (5,6,7,8,9)  below is where the very nice places to eat are at at Cannon and Pacific.  The MAC museum would be #4 on our map. The corner of Spruce and Second by the Coeur d’Alene Park is the bus stop both to downtown and the airport. Route 60.

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We are a very convenient place to stay: ten blocks from the highway, twenty from downtown Spokane, a superb walking neighborhood.

That said, people now do sometimes drop in for an electric top-up to reach the new Tesla super chargers in Ritzville, or Ellensburg:

From “running on empty” in a Tesla, you only “need” two hours at the Odell House to gain 62 miles fuel to get to Ritzville

(I’d want a little cushion on that distance on a highway, particularly traveling from the west to east where there is a bit of a climb.)

Of course if you have stayed overnight with us and drive thoughtfully, you’ll have more than enough to skip Ritzville and refuel in Ellensburg

We are not ready to talk yet about travel more than 100 miles east of here. Right now (September 2014) the nearest super charger to the east is 540 miles away in Billings.  Billings, MT I-90 exit 443 Billings Big Horn Resort

(Lots of welders and RV parks in the meantime.)

And keep in mind that there are very little, if any, fast charging opportunities in Pullman, so plan accordingly. (If any one knows differently please let us know!)

 

More on equipment: we have a “normal” 240 V 30 amp level 2 fast charger, that works directly with the Leaf or Volt needing no adapters.  Teslas seem to come regularly with the right ones–even on maiden voyages.

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The picture above was taken during installation–you will note there is a plug hanging down to the left side of the charging unit.  A few hours later there was a 240 v 40 amp “welding type” outlet just to the left of it.

(NEMA 6-50P)

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You CAN unplug our charger to use proprietary Tesla adapters to get the full 40 amps.

If you want to access the 40 amps that the wall plug provides, you will need a male adapter that would work with this type of set up–and of course a long enough cord to reach the car.

In reality, using the provided charging station seems to deliver the roughly 30 miles of juice per hour that is promised from these welding type of plugs.  People have done it both ways–30 amps and 40 amps.

Using the equipment as provided at 30 amps seems the most reliable.  The Watt Station sometimes takes a couple of resets to come back on after being unlpugged, so if you do unplug it, make sure you’ve got the right cords!

 

Where to park? Two options. We sit on a corner and have two drives that can access the charger.

Option #1 2325 West First drive.

A Tesla, charging on the left rear, is easiest to charge by backing into the 2325 West First Avenue gated drive. This is the dedicated drive for unit B.

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This is an example of the correct parking placement for the Tesla–quite close to the porch and garden wall. There is enough cord for this–but not a lot to spare.

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Option #2 the 105 South Poplar Street Drive

Volt below, charging on the right rear is easiest in the 105 South Poplar Street location.

 

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As is the Leaf, which can pull in easily forward in the Poplar drive.

If you rent unit C, or no one is parking in the space for unit C–where the dark blue or black car is shown below–it is possible to back a Tesla in close enough to access the cord.  But it is close.   First Ave is the easier location, near unit B.

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 Why do you want to charge your car here–or stay?

If we do say so ourselves, we are a great place to charge your EV.  (And actually, other people have said this, though secretly wishing for an even faster and covered service. )

Why so great a charging place?

To charge, one has of course to leave the car plugged in.  While that car is plugged in you will be within three  blocks of public transportation, walking distance to places to eat and shop, and across the street from a museum.  http://odellhouselodging.wordpress.com/2013/03/31/local-places-to-eat-and-drink/

Getting to downtown or the airport is easy.  Some individuals have actually left cars here to charge while away for the weekend on flights from the Spokane Airport.

If you visit in summer there is also a play ground in the nearby park with a fun water feature for your shorter friends.

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Rick and I have a Leaf (Nissan all-electric vehicle) which in real practice has a range of about 75-80 miles–given typical Spokane terrain and weather.  We admire the cross country trekkers who appear every now and then with an  EV.  We hope you will be one.

 

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Ten blocks from the highway, on the most western edge downtown of Spokane–and all slightly down hill. . .  :)

(We understand range anxiety. . . .)

 

 

 

3 thoughts on “Electric Vehicle Charging Station: Bring your Tesla (or Volt!) to Spokane. . .

  1. No images in WordPress links above.

    If you REALLY want to attract Tesla visitors, get a(n) HPWC installed. Can take up to 100A input, though it will also handle 50A (80 or 40 continuous).

  2. Great information–and it could happen. What we did put in was what Tesla said would be comparable with the high end ‘Vegas Hotels, who actually want you to be able to charge the car–not just look green to all the folks who do not drive one. Thanks for your comment.

  3. I hope you were able to get the sales tax you paid for the watt station and on the labor and wiring, refunded. You can obtain the forms for the refund from the Department of Revenue. The relevant law is RCW 82.08.816 (Exemptions “Electric vehicle batteries and infrastructure”. It will expire 1-1-2020. 8.9% of $2000 is worth the phone call and stamp.

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