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hturnerfamily

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I left on a 250 mile trip today, towing our 3,000lb camper, with the Lightning PRO... and while powering the camper from the truck, with ProPower,
to the Far NORTH GEORGIA mountains. The elevation change was 1,500 feet higher from start to finish.

Americus, GA to Young Harris GA....
250 miles via 'google maps' shortest/fastest route, but I chose the more 'scenic' and more leisurely US27 'rural' route, 315 miles.

1.3 miles per KWH for the majority of the trip, somewhat hilly in many areas, which equates to about 127 maximum towing miles... to 0% state of charge.
1.2 miles per KWH for the last 50 miles mostly due to some stringent 'top of Georgia' elevation changes, from 1,200 to over 2,000 feet...

average 20 cents per mile Charging costs
- all but one Charge Stations were CHARGEPOINT, most of them hosted by GA POWER. The Chargepoint app works perfectly on all, just tap your phone. Chargepoint sends you a text/email about your charge KWH and costs when finished. The other, an EV GO, is also in the 'Chargepoint network', so the same app works for it, nice.
- PLUG N CHARGE did not seem to be available with Chargepoint, although the FORD PASS APP shows it as 'in network'. Then, I realized that Ford's app requires you to check in with IT first, to ACTIVATE the Chargepoint station BEFORE you get out and plug in. It's not 'really' simply Plug N Charge, the app is still required. This also means that FORD will be charging you for the costs, NOT Chargepoint directly. I found that using the Chargepoint app was just as easy.
.....COLUMBUS GA Chargpoint 125/62.5 KWH
.....CARROLLTON GA Chargpoint 125/62.5 KWH
.....ROME GA Chargepoint 125/62.5 KWH (I found that NONE of these 125kwh 'shared' Chargepoint stations actually provided anything close to that, even with no one else at the station next to it - why, I don't know, but that certainly slows your progress. I've not seen a station yet that would provide 150 to 170kwh speeds as we've seen by some.)
.....CALHOUN GA EV GO at 50 KWH

average speed, maybe 55-60, mostly 4-lane roads/highways
temps - low 70's to start, mid to high 80's in the later parts of the day
winds - none to light
accessories: music, always.... air conditioner, maybe 1/3 of the trip, and a small amount of phone charging.

the truck pulled effortlessly and had no feeling of any 'weight' behind it
the first 100 miles was in 'Normal' drive mode, which allows for easier 'coasting' when lifting off the pedal
the next 215 was in 'Tow' mode, which simply provided quite a bit more 'regeneration' when lifting off the pedal, a bit like 'one pedal' driving


o.k., so it works, which is great, and which is expected, but...

Here's the REALITY of long-range travel, in general, but ESPECIALLY when towing: It's not as simple as that.
A)
you find yourself CHARTING your course of travel by WHERE the DC Fast Chargers are located, NOT necessarily by the 'normal' route you would have taken.
B)
all Chargers aren't always EMPTY when you arrive, and you are at the mercy of the number of chargers, and how LONG someone else is going to be charging.
C) all Chargers aren't necessarily DESIGNED for a large truck, much less with a TOWED TRAILER attached. *
D) since you'll never let your battery fall to 0%, obviously, your mindset has to change to using a combination of how low you are comfortable letting it get to before you charge, and WHERE the Chargers are located. Charger locations are going to be the BIGGEST concern, as they are NOT on every corner of every town.

If you are camping 100 miles from home, one stop will be easy. If you are traveling 250 to 300+ miles, you'll find yourself searching for Chargers as a much more critical aspect of the trip. And you HOPE each one is operational when you arrive.
Warning: If you have your spouse, and/or young children with you, it's going to be a LONG day.


Some stories:

1) I had to pull into stations 'sideways', rather than the typical 'pull up/back in' orientation that most Chargepoint stations are designed with.

2) I found that everyone does not necessarily KNOW that your are an EV, and that you are pulling in to 'charge' your vehicle - they may think that you are just a truck, or a truck and a camper, looking for a place to park. One Tesla owner saw me pull in sideways, with the nose of my truck right at her passenger door, and yet she 'thought' I was just parking. I eventually tapped nicely on her window and asked if she was almost finished charging, and she was SURPRISED that I was needing a Charge space.

3) I found that all stations are not located/oriented in 'convenient' places to maneuver into, much less park a big truck and trailer - most were designed for 'compact' EVs, like the LEAF or BOLT, who have no problem with curbs and sharp turns. Chargepoint locations are also typically TWO stations, right NEXT to each other, rather than spaced out, with a parking space or room in between. That's no issue for most, but we'll find that it can be more problematic for a big truck with another vehicle already parked there., or looking to 'squeeze in' next to us.

4) the EASIEST charge location with the EV GO, set within a large parking lot at a OUTLET CENTER MALL, where you could drive up/next to it on EITHER SIDE, with LONG cables... they should ALL be like this! A RIVIAN was there, and we chatted for a while, but he didn't take long... thank you Rivian.

5) EXPECT people to approach you... it's GOING TO HAPPEN, and especially when you are a LARGE TRUCK, towing a CAMPER, parked SIDEWAYS, maybe even blocking TRAFFIC. Oh well.

ProPower powered the camper the whole trip, with an extension cord from one of the 20amp bed outlets. Running an RV absorption Fridge, a mini compressor fridge, and three fans, the draw was about 280w constant, and up to 350w for several minutes each time the compressor fridge kicked on.

One annoyance, though, is that the LIGHTNING requires that you have the truck 'running' in order for ProPower to operate, although you MUST turn the truck OFF in order to start charging. Yes, you can then turn the truck back ON while charging is underway, which is mandatory since your MUST have air conditioning while you wait(!), but why the ProPower cannot stay on, at least for a set number of minutes after the truck is turned off, is something Ford should update. It's not a deal breaker, but when you 'restart' the truck, you also have to go thru several annoying alerts that require your input, such as 'an outlet in the bed is open, do you want to continue providing power to this outlet?', etc., even though you still have ProPower 'active'...just little aggravations.

For those of us considering using ProPower for extended times while not in the truck, such as while powering your camper, you CAN turn off the center screen. There is actually a physical BUTTON on the pro, mixed in next to the radio/music controls, that allow you to change or turn off the screen. Also, on the DRIVER screen, you can change it to 'CALM' mode for a much simpler and less cluttered appearance. This is also the ONLY screen that shows the Battery % while driving, otherwise you only see the 'status bar/circular indicator'.


Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... lightning-charging-chargepoint-with-camper-



Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... camper-rear-view-monitor-



Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... propower-while-traveling-



Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... driver-screen-



Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... lightning-charge-settings-screen-



Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... chargepoint-app-charging-speed-



Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... ford-pass-app-charging-info-
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Last edited:

adoublee

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Most all Chargepoint DCFC have 200A limit. Multiply 200 times the pack voltage to see max potential power - never gonna get near 125kW with these chargers and a "400V" vehicle, making them a bit of false advertising.
 
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hturnerfamily

hturnerfamily

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Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... LIGHTNING CHARGING CHARGEPOINT WITH CAMPER.JPG


Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... CAMPER rear view monitor.JPG


Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... ProPower while traveling.JPG


Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... Driver screen.JPG


Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... Lightning Charge settings screen.JPG


Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... Chargepoint app CHARGING speed.PNG


Ford F-150 Lightning 250 mile trip report: Lightning PRO - TOWING 3,000lb Powered Camper... Ford Pass app Charging info.PNG
 

Beaux

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I passed you on highway 53 in Calhoun yesterday afternoon. Although I wasn't in my lightning. Pretty cool to see you towing! I haven't seen many others in the wild yet.
 

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Maquis

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Note: Plug & Charge is only supported on EA so far.
 

cvalue13

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Goes to show perhaps that EV towing rang eis going to be WILDLY dependent on chosen speeds (relative to a given load aero-profile)
 

Griddlez

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Exceptional write up. Thanks for all the nitty gritty details. Us camper towers appreciate it.
 
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hturnerfamily

hturnerfamily

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actually, as for 'Plug N Charge', it worked perfectly for CHARGEPOINT, and shows as 'In the Blue Oval Charging Network' on the FOrd PAss App, but what I didn't realize is that you have to 'activate' that specific charger before the 'Plug N Charge' will then work - once you turn off the truck, get out and plug in the Chargepoint, it recognizes it and starts on it's own.
 
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hturnerfamily

hturnerfamily

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I passed you on highway 53 in Calhoun yesterday afternoon. Although I wasn't in my lightning. Pretty cool to see you towing! I haven't seen many others in the wild yet.
oh no!! I'll never turn 'right' when leaving that outlet mall again(!).... my mistake trying to take the 'back road short cut' to Hwy 53... I strolled down the road to meet up with Union Grove Rd, but before I could get there, there were what seemed like HUNDREDS of Semi Trailer Trucks backed up 1/4 mile from Union Grove. At first, I had no idea why, I couldn't see beyond the truck in front of me. Then, I realized I was coming next to a LOVES TRAVEL STOP, which seems to be in a not-so-great location, with all this new truck traffic coming and going on what was once an old 'rural' road. Some truck had broken down right as it entered the entry to LOVES, and was strangling all the other truck traffic trying to get in and out, and,..... well, after a few choice words, but with no way now to 'back out' of the situation, 15 minutes of my LIFE later, it finally got moving.

so much for that short cut. : ) I was heading to FAIRMOUNT, then ELLIJAY, and to Young Harris.
The Ellijay CHARGEPOINT fast charger is showing as out of service, which is what had forced me
to stop in Calhoun in the first place.
 

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actually, as for 'Plug N Charge', it worked perfectly for CHARGEPOINT, and shows as 'In the Blue Oval Charging Network' on the FOrd PAss App, but what I didn't realize is that you have to 'activate' that specific charger before the 'Plug N Charge' will then work - once you turn off the truck, get out and plug in the Chargepoint, it recognizes it and starts on it's own.
Sorry in advance for asking this silly question: Can you elaborate on what you mean by ‘activate’? Newbee here….
 
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hturnerfamily

hturnerfamily

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sure... I found, maybe by accident, that you can look at the same CHARGEPOINT charger in the Ford Pass App, and can see that it says 'in network', and a Blue LINK then shows to allow you to ACTIVATE that Plug N Charge station. I suppose it works the same for Electrify America, but I can't say because I've yet to use one.

Now, that's what I saw on my Ford Pass App, and it worked, as I had been using Chargepoint's own app to simply swipe at the station. I was surprised it worked.

What I didn't really like, though, is that the Ford Pass app usage means that FORD is going to charge/bill you for the amount, NOT Chargepoint, even though it is a Chargepoint station, and you may have an account with chargepoint. Using the Ford app is bypassing the Chargepoint direct link, which also means you don't get the 'on screen' diagram of your charging speeds, etc., you just get an email later showing some details.

I like the basic 'idea' of a single APP for Plug N Charge, but if most of the charging apps are already easy to use for you, it's no big deal one way or the other.
 

Firestop

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sure... I found, maybe by accident, that you can look at the same CHARGEPOINT charger in the Ford Pass App, and can see that it says 'in network', and a Blue LINK then shows to allow you to ACTIVATE that Plug N Charge station. I suppose it works the same for Electrify America, but I can't say because I've yet to use one.

Now, that's what I saw on my Ford Pass App, and it worked, as I had been using Chargepoint's own app to simply swipe at the station. I was surprised it worked.

What I didn't really like, though, is that the Ford Pass app usage means that FORD is going to charge/bill you for the amount, NOT Chargepoint, even though it is a Chargepoint station, and you may have an account with chargepoint. Using the Ford app is bypassing the Chargepoint direct link, which also means you don't get the 'on screen' diagram of your charging speeds, etc., you just get an email later showing some details.

I like the basic 'idea' of a single APP for Plug N Charge, but if most of the charging apps are already easy to use for you, it's no big deal one way or the other.
Thank you! Trying to best understand how this all works with the various apps/networks as I plan a cross country trip from Oregon to KC…….I expect to see many different charging networks……
 

Beaux

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oh no!! I'll never turn 'right' when leaving that outlet mall again(!).... my mistake trying to take the 'back road short cut' to Hwy 53... I strolled down the road to meet up with Union Grove Rd, but before I could get there, there were what seemed like HUNDREDS of Semi Trailer Trucks backed up 1/4 mile from Union Grove. At first, I had no idea why, I couldn't see beyond the truck in front of me. Then, I realized I was coming next to a LOVES TRAVEL STOP, which seems to be in a not-so-great location, with all this new truck traffic coming and going on what was once an old 'rural' road. Some truck had broken down right as it entered the entry to LOVES, and was strangling all the other truck traffic trying to get in and out, and,..... well, after a few choice words, but with no way now to 'back out' of the situation, 15 minutes of my LIFE later, it finally got moving.

so much for that short cut. : ) I was heading to FAIRMOUNT, then ELLIJAY, and to Young Harris.
The Ellijay CHARGEPOINT fast charger is showing as out of service, which is what had forced me
to stop in Calhoun in the first place.
My lightning came from the dealer in Ellijay. They have a charger at the dealership if you run low on options.

That whole exit is crazy now. There are a ton of new warehouses with more coming. Then last year bucees opened up right across from Loves.

I've also discovered that charging is not great in North Georgia. It was tough going until I got my charge station pro at home.

Enjoy your trip and sweet setup!
 
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hturnerfamily

hturnerfamily

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thanks, and yes, with the Chargepoint/GA POWER DC Fast Charger down for some time at Ellijay's Welcome Center, it leaves a BIG WIDE gap to reach far north Georgia/western NC where we like to visit, and have a son at college in Young Harris.

With that said, I just installed a NEMA 14-50 at his camper he lives in, so as long as we can 'get here', while towing, the charging will happen here for pennies on the dollar. If not towing, no worries.
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