chargeup
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Dedicated EV meter web site

Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:50 am

Hello,

Let me begin by saying I don't own a Leaf, but opted for a Volt. I know, this a Leaf forum, but we all have the same charging issues. I love my car but I was somewhat shocked to discover what it was going to cost me to charge this car where I live in Southern California. To gain 38 miles of driving I was looking at $4 for a fill up. To mitigate this expense I installed a dedicated Electric Vehicle meter yesterday and I am now enjoying .12 a kilowatt hour when charging from 9pm until noon. I was so intrigued by the entire process that I built out a web site dedicated to electric car charging.

Specifically, I have a section detailing the process to install the EV meter:

Start here: http://www.evelectricity.com/evmeters

Detailed installation experience: http://www.evelectricity.com/evmeters/install.php

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TomT
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Re: Dedicated EV meter web site

Wed Jan 23, 2013 10:04 am

Here in LADWP country the equation is different. I would have saved so little with a second dedicated EV meter (about 7.5 cents a Kwh rather than 10) that it made no sense to incur the cost of installing one since it would never pay back. Fortunately, though, our base rate is far less than what those in Edison and PG&E country must endure...
Last edited by TomT on Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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TonyWilliams
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Location: San Diego
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Re: Dedicated EV meter web site

Wed Jan 23, 2013 10:08 am

chargeup wrote: I love my car but I was somewhat shocked to discover what it was going to cost me to charge this car where I live in Southern California.


Interesting that you would build a website devoted to such a narrow segment of a narrow issue. Not everywhere has high priced electrical, and even in California, there are a multitude of electrical power providers, all with different rules and tariffs.

For instance, San Diego Gas & Electric had no problem placing a dedicated meter for my EV from my main box. Quick and easy. Also, those of us running 100% solar aren't going to be paying those outrageous peak charges for electrical, for those areas with that problem (and we certainly do at SDG&E). Our "Super Off Peak" Time Of Use is midnight to 5am.

The unit mounted on your garage wall is not really a "charger", but an overpriced electric supply safety box. It tells the car how much power it can provide, does some basic checks that everything is connected, and then supplies the power to the vehicle.

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Kataphn
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Re: Dedicated EV meter web site

Wed Jan 23, 2013 3:39 pm

TomT wrote:Here in LADWP country the equation is different. I would have saved so little with a second dedicated EV meter that it made no sense to incur the cost of installing one since it would never pay back. Fortunately, though, our base rate is far less than what those in Edison and PG&E country must endure...


Agree with Tom as we are also a DWP customer. We did not get separate meter for same reasons. It turns out that we charge several times to 80 % throughout the day since we both work from home and our usual is multiple short trips in the course of a day. Glad we are not confined to nighttime charging since we are getting maximum use of the car this way and it has become, by far, our primary car.
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Stoaty
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Re: Dedicated EV meter web site

Wed Jan 23, 2013 4:23 pm

Count me as another LA DWP customer who didn't bother with a separate EV meter. I spend so little on electricity for my Leaf (even at 15 cents per kwh for green electricity) that I wasn't really going to save much. I do most of my charging off-peak hours anyway, but do occasionally charge for short periods during the day.
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mynameisjim
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Re: Dedicated EV meter web site

Wed Jan 23, 2013 6:33 pm

I'm always amazed at the cost of electricity in California

GRA
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Re: Dedicated EV meter web site

Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:06 pm

mynameisjim wrote:I'm always amazed at the cost of electricity in California

Much of that can be chalked up to both strict smog requirements and Renewable Portfolio Standards. It always amuses me to see people complaining about high PG&E rates (in my area; feel free to substitute SCE/SDG&E/LADWP etc. as applicable), while at the same time urging legislators to increase the RPS % and boost subsidies for solar/wind. If you're required to buy electricity from more expensive renewable sources (often with a feed-through tariff to allow them to be profitable), then of course your rates will be higher than a utility that can buy power from the cheapest spot source. If we want clean air, we have to recognize that it comes with a price. TANSTAAFL applies.
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Boomer23
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Re: Dedicated EV meter web site

Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:51 pm

Hi chargeup. I appreciate your post and your site. We have sub-forums that are specific for various regions, and one for various utilities. There is a thread there for SCE. You might want to post a version of your OP on that SCE thread. Your report on the details of finding the right meter box and dealing with the utility and the electrician will be valuable to others, especially those new to EVs who are trying to work through the maze of choosing a rate plan for charging and figuring out how much it will cost them to charge an EV.

I opted for the single meter TOU rate TOU-D-TEV and I thought at first that you might have overlooked the advantages of that EV rate schedule. But in reading your opening page, I see that you are a heavy daytime (Peak) power user for various reasons, and that is the true killer for the single meter TOU plan. In your situation, I would have been forced to choose the two meter option, as you did.

Since we already had a 5 kW solar system installed 5 years before we got the LEAF, and since we don't use much daytime power, it became clear to me that we'd do very well on the single meter plan and charging the LEAF after midnight. In fact it worked out even better than I dreamed it would. Though we use a few thousand kWh per year more power than we generate, the TOU feature gives me an annual bill of close to zero for all power use.

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mikeEmike
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Re: Dedicated EV meter web site

Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:22 pm

Kataphn wrote:
TomT wrote:Here in LADWP country the equation is different. I would have saved so little with a second dedicated EV meter that it made no sense to incur the cost of installing one since it would never pay back. Fortunately, though, our base rate is far less than what those in Edison and PG&E country must endure...


Agree with Tom as we are also a DWP customer. We did not get separate meter for same reasons. It turns out that we charge several times to 80 % throughout the day since we both work from home and our usual is multiple short trips in the course of a day. Glad we are not confined to nighttime charging since we are getting maximum use of the car this way and it has become, by far, our primary car.

I'm also a DWP customer. I opted for the TOU rate. I agree, it doesn't make sense for everybody, but I think it will in my case. I can't say for sure yet because the DWP hasn't been able to get the meter to communicate with their billing department, so I'm still stuck with the regular tiered rate on my bill. Anyways, if all works out, I should see a difference because I have a small (2kW) set of solar panels that will offset a lot of my usage during the day (mainly from AC) during the summer when the high rates are in effect. The additional meter didn't cost me anything extra out of pocket. I went with the DWP's rebate program for installing an EVSE instead of the Blink project. I was able to roll the cost of the meter installation into that.

I certainly wouldn't consider it a deterrent from charging during the daytime, if needed, but given the option, I prefer charging at night. It's better for the grid and the LEAF batteries, during summertime at least. The lower cost of electricity for me is (or will be) a nice bonus.

wlegro
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Leaf Number: 022916
Location: L.A. CA > Eugene, OR

Re: Dedicated EV meter web site

Sat Feb 02, 2013 10:12 am

mikeEmike wrote:
Kataphn wrote:
TomT wrote:Here in LADWP country the equation is different. I would have saved so little with a second dedicated EV meter that it made no sense to incur the cost of installing one since it would never pay back. Fortunately, though, our base rate is far less than what those in Edison and PG&E country must endure...


Agree with Tom as we are also a DWP customer. We did not get separate meter for same reasons. It turns out that we charge several times to 80 % throughout the day since we both work from home and our usual is multiple short trips in the course of a day. Glad we are not confined to nighttime charging since we are getting maximum use of the car this way and it has become, by far, our primary car.

I'm also a DWP customer. I opted for the TOU rate. I agree, it doesn't make sense for everybody, but I think it will in my case. I can't say for sure yet because the DWP hasn't been able to get the meter to communicate with their billing department, so I'm still stuck with the regular tiered rate on my bill. Anyways, if all works out, I should see a difference because I have a small (2kW) set of solar panels that will offset a lot of my usage during the day (mainly from AC) during the summer when the high rates are in effect. The additional meter didn't cost me anything extra out of pocket. I went with the DWP's rebate program for installing an EVSE instead of the Blink project. I was able to roll the cost of the meter installation into that.

I certainly wouldn't consider it a deterrent from charging during the daytime, if needed, but given the option, I prefer charging at night. It's better for the grid and the LEAF batteries, during summertime at least. The lower cost of electricity for me is (or will be) a nice bonus.


Hi Kataphn - we got our new 2012 Leaf SL on Thursday, now using the outside 110v socket with an extension cord. Our house is 80 years old and our garage is too small for the car. I don't know the amps on the cord so I'm buying a 12-gauge today. It's a Rube Goldberg setup: extension cord plugged into the socket outside the garage door, runs through the space between door and frame into the garage, hooked up to the charger inside the garage so it won't be stolen, then the charger cord goes back outside to the car. But it's working - just takes a long time, but then I figure I'll just hook it up every time we return from a trip no matter how short. And there's a free charger at Glendale Nissan about 3 miles from our house in Silver Lake.

But I'm wondering how much your installation cost (if you don't mind saying), what kind you got and how the whole process went. I visited the AV site and saw what was available. First I'm getting the free DWP consultation - the $2000 rebate is still available, and there's also a federal tax credit of 30% (if I've got the details right). If central air needs 220-240v, that might be the only such line we have (gas appliances & hot water) - and it's downhill from the street and pretty far from where we park in front of our house. The Nissan dealer said AV has a $1999 package including installation - don't know if that would cover our particular situation. We're perfect for solar but can't afford it right now - the Leaf might be our only way to feel warm and fuzzy about not burning gasoline. (I'm thinking of a bumper sticker - "My other car is a Prius" because it's true.) Our model Leaf has a 6.6 port, and I wonder if the various options of chargers handle that. Obviously, I'm on a steep learning curve here. Kind of overwhelmed by all the details - I mean, the owner's manual is now my bedtime reading. :?

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