Photo above – JuiceBox Home EV Charger
EV Club member, Vincent Giordano, has utilized the Eversource incentives to buy a level 2 home EV charger and participate in the incentive to charge off-peak. In the 2-part post below, also published in the Ridgefield Press, he describes his experience and how the incentive worked for him. Vincent is a member of the Ridgefield Action Committee for the Environment (RACE).
The process whereby consumers have been accessing these incentives has not always been without hurdles, but we have been receiving reports from consumers that the utilities have been responsive in addressing issues. The club has a description of the program on its incentives page. The incentives he describes from Eversource are also available, with some small differences, from United Illuminating. So, take it away, Vincent…
Level 2 Home Charger
If you have an electric vehicle (EV) or are thinking about buying one, Eversource will help you pay for an electrical upgrade, a networked level 2 EV charger, and for charging the EV. Hard to believe – but it is true. Eversource currently has a program to rebate up to $500 for a wiring upgrade to 240 volts for your EV charger, another $500 for purchasing a network-ed level 2 EV charger, and up to $300 per year if you sign up for the advanced managed charging program.
Why is Eversource offering these incentives? It is because they realize the huge impact EVs are going to have on the grid and the importance of managing the demand for power. According to CT DMV data, Ridgefield residents own more than 515 EVs and there are more than 30,000 registered EVs in CT. Having networked EVs allows Eversource to minimize EV charging when the grid is under pressure. In the future, with bidirectional charging, Eversource will also be positioned to buy power back from EVs.
I didn’t need to upgrade my electric wiring so I passed on the wiring rebate. However, since I ran over my charger cord with the snow blower this past winter, a new and improved EV charger was intriguing. In April I purchased one of the Eversource approved EV chargers, a JuiceBox. Then I attempted to apply for my $500 rebate and to register for the advanced managed charging program. I would like to be able to report a seamless rebate and registration process. But in truth, it was more convoluted and difficult than it had to be. Thankfully, each time I ended up in some administrative trap or do-loop, the Eversource EV team came to my rescue.
This week, I received a $500 rebate check, and in October I should be receiving a gift card with the managed charging payment. The demand response season is June – September. If you are interested in these rebates, a good starting point is the Eversource FAQs for the managed charging program.
With CT’s grid 90 percent renewable energy by 2030, transitioning from fossil fuels to CT’s grid will help to save the planet and reduce US reliance on dictators with huge oil reserves and territorial ambitions.
December Update and Managed Charging
I just received a $95 check from Eversource for charging my Chevy Volt for 5 months (May to September). During those months I used 693.43 kWh of electricity to charge my car. At 10.45 cents per kWh, my cost was $72.46. So the $95 check more than covered my outlay. And now that I understand the programs better, I could have earned even more.
In an earlier article, I explained the fantastic Eversource rebate program for electric chargers and any needed electrical upgrade. In this article, I share my experience with Eversource’s charging programs. There are more than 600 electric vehicles registered to Ridgefielders and just 90 of us are enrolled in Eversource’s charging programs.
Our family has a 2016 Chevy Volt plug in hybrid. It is our day to day; go-to vehicle. Other than in the coldest months, the Volt has a 60-mile range which easily meets all our local travel needs. We go about our business and charge at home. Starting each day with a full charge. When I read that Eversource would pay up to $300 per year to charge our car, I decided to give their programs a try.
There are two programs. A baseline and advanced charging program. The baseline program rewards participants who shift at least 80% of their charging to off-peak periods. Off-peak charging is charging outside of the hours of 3 pm to 9 pm on weekdays. If, in a given month, you manage to charge 80% or more during the off-peak period, you earn a $10 incentive for that month. That’s a potential earnings of $120 annually. There is an additional incentive for participating in optional Demand Response (DR) Events. These events can happen between June and September and only occur on non-holiday weekdays. You must participate in all optional DR events in a given month in order to receive the $20 incentive during DR Season. Full participation in all four months of the DR Season, and you earn an additional $80. The baseline tier incentives are capped at $200 per year.
The advanced charging program gives Eversource more control over your charger. You are rewarded for partnering with them to coordinate your charging. You are required to create a charging schedule and to do your best to not override this schedule. You specify how much of a charge you would like and by when (e.g. 100% charge by 8 am). The charging schedule is created at the time you enroll via energy hub. Hang onto that email if you want to change your schedule in the future. Participation in the advance program pays the participant $25 per month, capped at $300 per year
So how did I earn $95. It turns out that I just missed the off-peak goal in May (76% vs. the 80% goal). In June, I missed the goal again (66% vs. 80% goal), but I didn’t opt out of any DR events in June so I earned $20. In July, I joined the Advanced Program and earned the advanced Tier incentives for July, August, and September ($25/month = $75). Thus a total of $95. For our charging habits, the advanced charging program seems to be just fine.