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“Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Tue Sep 14, 2021 5:13 pm
by Skyking6976
I honestly had no clue what keyword to use searching for this ;)

So the wife runs in the store, it’s still pretty warm outside so I sat there in “park” with the A/C on. And I waited… Battery drain was just a percent or two. I felt so guilty and wondered if that damages the car? Watched those cool “how to” videos on the screen while I waited.

Oh…on a related note can you sit in the car when it’s being charged? I glanced at an article that read like you should stand next to the car with a fire extinguisher so…

Thanks in advance…

Re: “Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Tue Sep 14, 2021 5:19 pm
by Arm
Bro...can I make a recommendation for you? Relax...enjoy your car. You're worrying about piddly stuff that has no bearing on the car's reliability or longevity. You will drive yourself mad. Feeling guilty about the car running the A/C :shock:

But be careful about sitting in the car while charging...it might explode. :lol:

As Biden would say "Come on man!"

Re: “Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Tue Sep 14, 2021 5:36 pm
by Skyking6976
Gotcha…

Re: “Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Tue Sep 14, 2021 7:07 pm
by eNate
Yeah, if you think about it a little differently from a gas engine, the AC is doing nothing it wouldn't be doing if you were driving, and actually less, because there are lower cooling demands when the battery isn't under load.

The system is doing the same thing when you climatize the cabin for departure. It sits there "idle" either heating or cooling while bringing the cabin to temp.

And taking a nap in a charging car is fine.

Re: “Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 8:44 am
by Skyking6976
eNate wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 7:07 pm
Yeah, if you think about it a little differently from a gas engine, the AC is doing nothing it wouldn't be doing if you were driving, and actually less, because there are lower cooling demands when the battery isn't under load.

The system is doing the same thing when you climatize the cabin for departure. It sits there "idle" either heating or cooling while bringing the cabin to temp.

And taking a nap in a charging car is fine.
Thank you Nate. When I was doing the one and only charge I thought why not sit in the car with the AC on and familiarize myself more with the iDrive system, etc. while the system is charging. Didn’t seem I could do that but I was frazzled anyway from previous stops where the charger didn’t work.

Re: “Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 9:35 am
by eNate
Hey, no problem, EVs required a slightly tweaked mindset after a lifetime of gasoline engine familiarity, customs, best practices, etc.

I remember grilling my workplace EV expert (BMW 1-Series ActiveE, followed by a Kia Soul). I couldn't wrap my head around these cars being able to adequately heat the cabin and defrost the windshield without absolutely decimating the battery.

Re: “Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:17 am
by Arm
eNate wrote:
Wed Sep 15, 2021 9:35 am
Hey, no problem, EVs required a slightly tweaked mindset after a lifetime of gasoline engine familiarity, customs, best practices, etc.

I remember grilling my workplace EV expert (BMW 1-Series ActiveE, followed by a Kia Soul). I couldn't wrap my head around these cars being able to adequately heat the cabin and defrost the windshield without absolutely decimating the battery.
You'll find that this car has a lot of glass and gets hot during sunny days or even when the sun is out in the winter. The A/C sometimes isn't up to the task fully on very hot days. My new car came with tint on the rear windows so it helps a bit but my past i3's had no tint and the amount of glass on this thing just lets the sun shine through.

Re: “Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Thu Sep 16, 2021 5:55 am
by Skyking6976
That’s interesting Arm. It was 88° yesterday and I thought to myself how well the AC was keeping the car cool at only the low fan setting on auto. Maybe it’s because the car is brand new. As a former lifelong Texan yeah…I’d be curious what August would be like in Houston driving an i3 but so far very impressed with the cooling.

Since the screen doesn’t come on while charging I assume it’s because BMW assumed people would be charging their car as needed in the garage or driveway at night after work. Not intended to be driven on cross country trips so there’s no need to have the screen on while charging.

Re: “Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Thu Sep 16, 2021 12:28 pm
by Arm
Skyking6976 wrote:
Thu Sep 16, 2021 5:55 am
That’s interesting Arm. It was 88° yesterday and I thought to myself how well the AC was keeping the car cool at only the low fan setting on auto. Maybe it’s because the car is brand new. As a former lifelong Texan yeah…I’d be curious what August would be like in Houston driving an i3 but so far very impressed with the cooling.

Since the screen doesn’t come on while charging I assume it’s because BMW assumed people would be charging their car as needed in the garage or driveway at night after work. Not intended to be driven on cross country trips so there’s no need to have the screen on while charging.
I should have clarified. The A/C will cool the car but there is so much glass on the car that you really feel the radiative heat of the sun coming through even with the A/C cranking. It's really no different than the sun beating down on a house with lots of window area for great sunlight but not so great for radiative heat coming in.

Re: “Idle” With A/C OK?

Posted: Thu Sep 16, 2021 1:09 pm
by alohart
Arm wrote:
Thu Sep 16, 2021 12:28 pm
The A/C will cool the car but there is so much glass on the car that you really feel the radiative heat of the sun coming through even with the A/C cranking.
In the tropics with higher average sun angles than in the middle latitudes, I feel more heat radiating down through the roof than entering through the side windows. The black CFRP roof absorbs infrared radiation that is re-radiated down into the cabin due to little if any heat insulation between the roof and headliner. The A/C cools the cabin air well while the top of my heat feels warmth from above.