indyflick
Posts: 505
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"Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 10:40 am

One of the EV FUD talking points circulating presently is that the'll cause your electric bill to shoot through the roof. I first heard that last summer, about the time we decided to purchase a LEAF. As a result, I set a goal to reduce our electrical usage by 1.2 mega watt hours over a 12 month period. That sounds like a lot, but we did achieve the goal and we did it without installing solar panels or fundamentally changing our lifestyle. So to reduce 1.2 mega watt hours in a year, it means you need to reduce an average of 100 kWh per month or 3.3 kWh per day, now that seems more achievable doesn't it? Here's what we did.
  • - Hang clothes to dry on the clothes rack - usie the electric dryer as little as possible
    - Use whole house fan, instead of air conditioner
    - Only run full loads of wash
    - Close vents to all rooms, except the main living area, and only air condition that area (reduced area to cool by 50%)
    - Use air conditioning to reduce humidity to about 50% (you'll need a hygrometer) turn it off regardless of the temperature. Use fans in the rooms you are occupying
    - Use CFL or LED in all lighting you use regularly
    - Check your refrigerator temperature settings. We keep ours at medium. Keep your freezer full but not overstuffed
    - Eliminate vampire power. We unplug the TV at night and no charger is left on after it has charged the batteries.
Tools help. You can't manage what you can't measure. We use an indoor/outdoor wireless digital thermometer/hygrometer. That way we know when we need to shut down the whole house fan, when the temperature outside exceeds the temperature inside. We also have a smartmeter from SDG&E and it's tied into Google Powermeter. So we can see our hourly electrical use and this is summed daily, weekly, and monthly.

Below is a post I read from another blog. It appears this guy was thinking along the same lines. He mentions the term "Negawatts", I think that is a great term!
Charles Whalen on another blog wrote:In the 5 and a half years that my wife and I have been driving our Toyota RAV4-EVs, one of the most frequent questions I’ve gotten from people is ... “How much did your electric bill go up when you got your electric cars?”

People are always confounded and have a puzzled look on their face when I answer that our electric bill actually went DOWN after we got our EVs. How could that be possible, they wonder?

Well, the answer is that we undertook a whole series of household energy efficiency upgrades at the same time that we bought our two EVs, with a result that the amount of electricity saved by all the energy efficiency upgrades was greater than that used for charging our two EVs, such that the net effect ended up being a net reduction in electric consumption.

And that’s without having even done any solar (yet).

So, yes, it's actually possible to produce all the electricity needed to charge an electric car solely from "Negawatts".

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evnow
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Re: "Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 11:59 am

We used about 600 kwh last month. I paid about $60 in variable charges - including some $8 for "green energy".

If I drive 1,000 miles a month I'd use 250kwh. So my electricity bill would go up by $25.

In my current car, 1,000 miles would be 50 gallons or about $150 a month in gas.

So a net saving of $125 per month because of Leaf.

Even if you paid 30 cents / kwh, in some areas, you would still be spending only half the money on electricity compared to gas.

We don't need to be "defensive" on this issue at all.
1st Leaf : 2/28/2011 to 5/6/2013
2nd Leaf : 5/4/2013 to 3/21/2017
Volt : 3/25/2017 to 5/25/2018
Model 3 : 5/10/2018 to ?

smkettner
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Re: "Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 12:22 pm

Using my current standard rate the marginal cost is 24 and soon 27 cents KWH
Additional 200Kwh would be $48 to $54. Compare to $150 to $200 in gas for the truck.
With a TOU plan the cost may add little to nothing as we are very off peak users of electric.
1 bar lost at 21,451 miles, 16 months.
2 bar lost at 35,339 miles, 25 months.
LEAF traded at 45,400 miles for a RAV4-EV
RAV4 traded in for I-Pace Dec 2018

LEAFfan
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Re: "Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 1:54 pm

smkettner wrote:Using my current standard rate the marginal cost is 24 and soon 27 cents KWH
Additional 200Kwh would be $48 to $54. Compare to $150 to $200 in gas for the truck.
With a TOU plan the cost may add little to nothing as we are very off peak users of electric.
If we didn't use our pvs, the rate would be .07/kwh (off peak) X 8kwh daily ave.= $ .56/day = $17/mo. = $204/yr. :D

indyflick
Posts: 505
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Re: "Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 3:43 pm

The way I look at it that I'm trading efficiencies for LEAF miles. Year over year I've "banked" 1.2mWh in reduced electrical consumption through efficiencies. That 1.2mWh gets me 4800 LEAF miles at 4 miles per kWh. And it's even better on the grid because the 1.2mWh per year I save is predominately during peak times. The 1.2mWh I'll be using to charge the LEAF will be on super off-peak (12:00am to 6:00am) time.

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johnr
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Re: "Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 8:46 pm

I practice similar techniques which reduce the energy use significantly. CFL lights, check. Line drying clothes, check. Keeping the refrigerator full and the temperature not too cold, check. Another thing that helps a lot is opening the windows at night when the temperature gets cooler outside than in, and closing them when the reverse happens in the morning. No whole-house fan here, but everyone has windows - that, and a $10 indoor/outdoor thermometer from W-Mart is all it takes ;) It's amazing how much energy can be saved without any sacrificing comfort just by doing a few smart things. :)

Since I'm already minimizing our electrical usage, when I get my electric car the electric bills will inevitably go up a little ... but the money spent on gasoline will go way down! 8-)
My trip to Mineral King and the value of regen

Charging stations, electrical adapters, and portable CHAdeMO quick chargers

2011 upgrade: Fossil < Leaf. 2014 upgrade: Leaf < imiev. 2017 upgrade: imiev < tesla. Done upgrading.

smkettner
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Re: "Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 9:16 pm

johnr wrote: Keeping the refrigerator full and the temperature not too cold, check.
I wish the fridge would come with a timer to keep the compressor off during peak daytime rates.
1 bar lost at 21,451 miles, 16 months.
2 bar lost at 35,339 miles, 25 months.
LEAF traded at 45,400 miles for a RAV4-EV
RAV4 traded in for I-Pace Dec 2018

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abasile
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Location: Arrowbear Lake, CA

Re: "Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 9:38 pm

In a house like ours with multiple computers (which are relative energy hogs), it really helps to put computers to sleep or "hibernate" when they are not in use. Configure computers to automatically go to sleep when idle, if possible. Doing this has significantly reduced our electric bills. Replacing our old fridge with a new, Energy Star unit also made a very noticeable difference, even though the new fridge is a lot larger.

At this point, we are using about 300 kWh per month ($38 with Southern California Edison), and I'm not sure how much lower we can go. We don't have AC, as our summers are not too hot and our home is relatively well insulated. Our clothes dryer is gas heated. I've been swapping CFL bulbs for LEDs, which are expensive but should still pay off faster than solar panels.

Once we get a LEAF, I anticipate that our electric bills will be close to $100 per month, assuming about 10,000 miles per year of driving. This is roughly based on SCE's plug-in car rate calculator. This does seem expensive, and isn't greatly cheaper than gasoline for our 30 mpg car. The upside is that solar panels will then make economic sense for us (they currently don't).

indyflick
Posts: 505
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 8:18 am

Re: "Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 9:41 pm

johnr wrote:I practice similar techniques which reduce the energy use significantly. CFL lights, check. Line drying clothes, check. Keeping the refrigerator full and the temperature not too cold, check. Another thing that helps a lot is opening the windows at night when the temperature gets cooler outside than in, and closing them when the reverse happens in the morning. No whole-house fan here, but everyone has windows - that, and a $10 indoor/outdoor thermometer from W-Mart is all it takes ;) It's amazing how much energy can be saved without any sacrificing comfort just by doing a few smart things. :)

Since I'm already minimizing our electrical usage, when I get my electric car the electric bills will inevitably go up a little ... but the money spent on gasoline will go way down! 8-)
Looks like you're all set John. The one thing I would say about the whole house fan is that it not only brings the cool air in faster than an open window, but it also exhausts the intense heat from the attic. We have a simple one in our hallway which works very well. I saw a really nice one in an article that was installed in the middle of the attic an had individual ductwork to each room. You could open or close any vent you wanted. Very nice system but like 5x the cost of what mine was. Probably best for new home construction.

DaveinOlyWA
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Re: "Negawatts" - Preparing for Your New Electric Car

Sat Sep 18, 2010 9:47 pm

Already have an electric car and currently" burn" thru about$ 10 a month. The Leaf will play a much bigger. Role so hoping to at least double that to over $20 a month, but even if i went over$ 40 a month that would still be an estimated$ 25 a month cheaper than gas which also does not account for the average of$ 15 a month in other maintenance costs.

Keep in mind, the car being replaced has a lifetime 52 mpg.
2011 SL; 44,598 mi, 87% SOH. 2013 S; 44,840 mi, 91% SOH. 2016 S30; 29,413 mi, 99% SOH. 2018 S; 25,185 mi, SOH 92.23%. 2019 S Plus; 13,705 mi, 93.41% SOH
My Blog; http://daveinolywa.blogspot.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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