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Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Fri Nov 26, 2010 11:22 am
by TimeHorse
I can't find a copy of NEC 2005 to see what precisely Chapter 2 says about this, but upon further digging, I see that my county inspector had the right regulation but was quoting the wrong manual. He is following the IRC (International Residential Code) rule E3501.2
IRC E3501.2 Number of services. wrote:A dwelling unit shall be supplied by only one service. "
I could not find verification for this, but I think the main difference with town-homes is that each unit is separated by a firewall which I guess if following code has a 2-hour burn limit. But again, I would love to read the letter of the regulations because I don't want for me or anyone else in the county to be mislead with respect to what is and is not to code in the Commonwealth.

Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Fri Nov 26, 2010 12:27 pm
by wwhitney
IRC E3501.2 Number of services. wrote:A dwelling unit shall be supplied by only one service. "
Sure, the NEC says the same thing (although there are a number of exceptions), and then it says that each service can have up to six disconnects. Does the IRC restrict the number of disconnects per service?

Wayne

Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Fri Nov 26, 2010 4:56 pm
by tps
wwhitney wrote:
IRC E3501.2 Number of services. wrote:A dwelling unit shall be supplied by only one service. "
Sure, the NEC says the same thing (although there are a number of exceptions), and then it says that each service can have up to six disconnects. Does the IRC restrict the number of disconnects per service?

Wayne
Maybe a structure may contain multiple "dwelling units".

Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Fri Nov 26, 2010 6:53 pm
by Smidge204
TimeHorse wrote:I can't find a copy of NEC 2005 to see what precisely Chapter 2 says about this, but upon further digging, I see that my county inspector had the right regulation but was quoting the wrong manual. He is following the IRC (International Residential Code) rule E3501.2
IRC E3501.2 Number of services. wrote:A dwelling unit shall be supplied by only one service. "
I could not find verification for this, but I think the main difference with town-homes is that each unit is separated by a firewall which I guess if following code has a 2-hour burn limit. But again, I would love to read the letter of the regulations because I don't want for me or anyone else in the county to be mislead with respect to what is and is not to code in the Commonwealth.

As a consulting engineer in the state of New York I've run into this a few times. Disclaimer: my experience is only with application of the code by New York State and local utilities. Of course, your local requirements may or may not be different since the NEC does not have any legal teeth by itself... but I would think most places adopt the NEC as their own, which is then enforced locally.


What you say is basically correct; the firewall makes all the difference. The idea here is that, if a fire fighter crew has to do their job, they will disconnect the electricity so their water hoses don't get someone killed. If there is more than one service entering a building, this creates problems because there is basically no way for the fire crew to KNOW that.

The exception to this rule is if the portions of a building serviced by different utility entrances are separated by an adequate fire wall.

If the issue is getting a separate electric meter for your charger then by my interpretation you will either need to fire-rate and completely isolate the garage and have the utility install a second meter and service disconnect, or install your own sub-meter. Sub-metering is by far the most sensible choice.

Hell, I'm amazed L2 chargers don't have that functionality build in already! (Or do they?) A Kill-a-Watt power meter costs 20 bucks 'merican, and you'd think they could add that functionality to the charger with their current prices.

wwhitney wrote:
IRC E3501.2 Number of services. wrote:A dwelling unit shall be supplied by only one service. "
Sure, the NEC says the same thing (although there are a number of exceptions), and then it says that each service can have up to six disconnects. Does the IRC restrict the number of disconnects per service?

Wayne
What this means is, you have a service from the pole or transformer vault that enters the building. You are allowed to split those wires to directly feed up to six disconnects. A common example is condos or office buildings: Service comes in to a trough and gets split into as many as six utility-owned meter pans (immediately followed by disconnect switches.)

But you need one and only one dedicated disconnect for each building or adequately fire-rated portion thereof.

Again, local code may or may not agree.
=Smidge=

Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Fri Nov 26, 2010 8:49 pm
by TimeHorse
Smidge204 wrote:As a consulting engineer in the state of New York I've run into this a few times. Disclaimer: my experience is only with application of the code by New York State and local utilities. Of course, your local requirements may or may not be different since the NEC does not have any legal teeth by itself... but I would think most places adopt the NEC as their own, which is then enforced locally.
Interestingly enough, New York is one of the few states, like the Commonwealth of Virginia, still on NEC 2005. I think the Firewall is the answer though and although a submeter is what I think makes sense, like they do in North Carolina, the problem in Virginia is also a State Corporation Commission issue -- the body that decides what the PU may charge its customers -- most states have them. Here in Virginia, our SCC has stated that all residences must use the same rate. So even though I could get a submeter on my home, I couldn't open a new account with a TOU rate with it because that would be a different rate than the rate charged by the main meter. In NC, they are allowed to charge different rates. Dominion Virginia is approaching the SCC with a proposal to allow for special EV charging rates based no doubt in large part my queries about the issue. Of course, part of this may also be to create a schedule for public L2 and L3 charging stations, opening the way to commercial, pay charging locations throughout the Commonwealth. There will be a request for comment and of course I will do my best to encourage the SCC to allow the differing rates for residences (this apparently only applies to submeters as a fellow board member in Virginia is able to install the different rated meters on separate structures, which is allowed). However, I will be against public L2 and L3 charging fee schedules unless they are very small, for obvious reasons.

Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Sat Nov 27, 2010 4:59 am
by Smidge204
TimeHorse wrote:Interestingly enough, New York is one of the few states, like the Commonwealth of Virginia, still on NEC 2005.
And what a pain that is! The newer NEC versions have updates for solar PV system tie-ins that makes designing and installing them a lot easier. "But the newer code says you can tie it in like this..." "We don't use the newer code." "But but..." :evil:

Our local utility offers time-of-use and net metering schemes, though if you have both they'll make you install two meters; one for TOU consumption ("incoming" power) and one for net metering back into the grid ("outgoing" power). I can only guess they'll charge you the TOU rate but credit you only with the flat/lowest rate possible. Bastards. You also can't net meter if you have a PV system larger than 10kW for residential, but 10kW residential is pretty big.

Regarding rates for public charging, it would also make sense that whatever they cost to use would be TOU. Presumably it actually costs the utility more to generate electricity during peak hours so it makes sense to charge more per kWh. I agree that the utility rates for these stations should not be special, so the only way costs could increase to "stupid" levels is if private owners of the stations decided to gouge people. Good luck with the RFC when that rolls around!
=Smidge=

Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Sat Nov 27, 2010 4:14 pm
by wwhitney
Smidge204 wrote:What this means is, you have a service from the pole or transformer vault that enters the building. You are allowed to split those wires to directly feed up to six disconnects.
I agree.
Smidge204 wrote: But you need one and only one dedicated disconnect for each building or adequately fire-rated portion thereof.
I disagree, as far as the NEC goes. You can have up to six disconnects per service. They have to be grouped in one place, but killing power to everything the service feeds may require flipping up to six switches. For example, if the service feeds only a main panel, and the main panel has six or fewer breakers in it, it does not require a main breaker under the NEC.

Cheers, Wayne

Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Thu Apr 14, 2011 4:39 pm
by Pipcecil
Ok, I wanted to give a heads up to all your Texas Leaf (and future Leaf owners) on the eVgo system in Dallas & Houston (mostly focused on Dallas)

Firstly eVgo launched their first station in Dallas at the beltline and montfort drive at a Walgreens. For those that know the area, its off the DNT near addison.

eVgo is planning to install at least 20 stations this year with a total roll out of over 100 by 2012 (I think thats about right).

Each station is divided by 2 types - the "Freedom Station" and "Convenience Station". Convenience stations are Level 2 chargers that are only accessible when the business it resides with is open. The Freedom Stations are open 24/7 and offer level 2 AND level 3 chargers! (compatible level 3 chargers on the leaf). This means Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston will have a system of level 3 chargers available, almost more then any market!!!

eVgo has 3 separate plans you can purchase, a Home plan that is $49 per month which includes the installation and EVSE equipment. the Mobile Plan is $79 a month and includes all of the Home Plan plus unlimited charging at charging stations. The final plan is the Complete Plan for $89 that includes all of Mobile Plan plus all electricity used while charging your vehicle. All plans come with a 3 year agreement.

For breakout cost, the EVSE with installation would end up being $1764 (cheaper than going through Nissan - plus no interest if your rolling your EVSE into your leaf cost as an option). As for cost of electricity, it averages here at 11 cents per kW, meaning that if you charged your leaf from near 10% to 100% for about 20 days a month that still $50 dollars, more costly than the complete plan. The Complete Plan requires your electric provider either be: Reliant Energy, TXU Energy, Direct Energy, Green Mountain Energy Company (this all means you must be serviced by Oncor). If you do not get your electricity through these providers you must switch if you wish to use the Complete Plan. If you are not provided by Oncor utilities (i.e. on a co-op) you cannot participate.

For the access to the level 2 and 3 evse chargers, you MUST have the Mobile or Complete plan with eVgo. You cannot use these stations as a per use cost. To charge, when you register with eVgo, you are given a fob key. This fob key will activate both the level 2 and level 3 EVSEs.

Currently I live in a co-op area, HILCO. I am working to get a deal with eVgo and HILCO to allow us southern DFW people access to the complete plan (go go power of the consumer!).

So, take what you will, Dallas and Houston will have an extensive charging station network (especially the rare level 3s!), but it comes with the requirement of signing up with eVgo. Personally, I am excited and hope I can help facilitate this deal between eVgo and HILCO so I can go with the Complete Plan (best deal IMO).

Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Wed Apr 20, 2011 7:23 am
by adric22
Pipcecil wrote: For the access to the level 2 and 3 evse chargers, you MUST have the Mobile or Complete plan with eVgo. You cannot use these stations as a per use cost. To charge, when you register with eVgo, you are given a fob key. This fob key will activate both the level 2 and level 3 EVSEs.
This whole thing seems crazy to me for several reasons:
  • Most people are going to already have a Level-2 charger in the home (like me) so why is there no plan available just for accessing the public chargers without having a home unit from EVgo?
  • Why all of the level-3 chargers? My leaf doesn't have the level-3 and so far every leaf owner I know also does not have it.
  • Top it off with the fact that the level-3 charger seems to be mostly a Nissan thing as I don't think any other manufacturers are using that.
  • Why can't they be made to be pay-per-use? That would make so much more sense for people like me who might need a charge on a freak occasion, but don't want to pay a monthly fee of $79 just to know it is available.

Re: eVgo Charging Stations ... a pricing strategy gone wrong

Posted: Wed Apr 20, 2011 12:02 pm
by KeiJidosha
Pipcecil wrote:So, take what you will, Dallas and Houston will have an extensive charging station network (especially the rare level 3s!), but it comes with the requirement of signing up with eVgo. Personally, I am excited and hope I can help facilitate this deal between eVgo and HILCO so I can go with the Complete Plan (best deal IMO).
If this was an option in California, I'd sign up. Like most, I’d prefer free, but the free legacy chargers here are few, and maintenance is slim. I don't think the free model is sustainable. I would rather pay for ubiquitous chargers, than be tethered to my garage by a free pay model. I see future competition being between a subscription and pay per use business models. Infrequent users pay a higher per-charge price, subscribers get the buffet. This is also an attractive model for those without a garage or assigned parking.