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Electricity Rates for So Cal Edison (not good)

Discussion in 'California' started by firealarm, Jul 17, 2012.

  1. firealarm

    firealarm Member

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    Hello.. I just spoke to Southern California Edison and if you're in that area, the news is not great. I asked about rates for electric cars and wanted a better explanation than what was online. It boils down to this:

    Option 1: Use the same meter as your house meter and switch to the electric vehicle plan. This allows you to charge you vehicle between the hours of midnight to 6 AM at a reduced rate. The rate starts at 6 cents at level 1 then 12 cents for level 2. (this is for summer, slightly lower for winter) However, if you use much electricity during the day, 10 AM to 6 PM, (even having computers on, etc), your rate at level 2 gets an additional 50 cent penalty! She advised that if you use more than very very basic electricity to not use this option. So, if your work from home like me, it's a 100% no, have kids that come home, etc this is NOT a good option at all.

    Option 2: First, to use this option you have to have a separate meter for the car only. The cost for this, from what she has heard, is between 2 and 3 thousand dollars. Edison will then come out and install a meter after the electrician takes care of the installation. Once this has been installed, it you can charge you car only from 6 PM to 9 PM you get a reduced rate. The rate is 11 cents between those times. Any other time it is 28 cents in the summer and 24 cents during the winter. The 11 cents stays the same during the winter from 6 to 9 PM.

    All of the cost comparisons I've been reading have been much lower average cost, but if you are in CA with Edison, the rates can be pretty high unless you can charge at very specific times with a very specific lifestyle.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Have your employer install an EVSE/NEMA 14-50 at work and charge there instead of at home.
     
  3. shokunin

    shokunin P85 & S40

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    Just to note, that SCE has already moved some areas to Time Of Use rates with the installation of the smart meters. Going forward don't expect the current flat tiered structure to stay intact. Getting an EV and getting solar is going to speed up the ROI on a solar installation. I also usually work from home with a number of computers and disk arrays on during the day, so going TOU+EV plan the peak power rate is over $.50 kw/hr, a major bummer.

    We're planning on both a model S and Model X so tacking on an extra 500-600KWhrs even on the current tiered structure will push us into more expensive tiers. Either way it's a lose-lose on TOU vs current tiered structure.

    We're looking into solar to generate some excess KW/hrs during the day to sell back to SCE at peak hour rates, but then use the "credit" at super off-peak rates for charging. We would program the Teslas to charge from 1am-6am in order to take advantage of super off peak rates on the TOU-EV plan.

    Anyone recommend a good solar installer in the OC? I've had a number of companies over for their sales pitch but many seem like fly-by-night operations.
     
  4. SByer

    SByer '08 #383

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    Option 3: don't tell them you have an EV. Charge at night (at slightly higher rates, but still far lower cost-per-mile than an ICE) but make it up in negawatts during the day (switch out bulbs, get a smart(er) thermostat, bump the AC temp by two degrees).

    But the convince-work plan is definitely the best if you can swing it ;-). Tell them all the cool companies up here in the bay area are doing it.
     
  5. Lloyd

    Lloyd Active Member

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    I believe you also have additional meter and billing charges if you add the additional meter. Guess $ 25 per month.
     
  6. Timothy

    Timothy Driving on Sunshine

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    Santa Barbara, CA
    I have a grandfathered rate from SCE that is TOU (time of use.) High rates M-F 10-6; low rate other times. Rates higher in summer than the winter. We put in solar panels 3 years ago and have had a negative electrical bill for each of the subsequent years--in spite of having a Tesla Roadster the last year. Driving on Sunshine!

    We used REC Solar | Solar Power for Business | Solar Panel Installation for Home Owners and were happy with them. I'd also suggest checking Home Solar Lease Installation and see if a leasing arrangement works for you. And also check out One Block Off the Grid: The Smart New Way to Go Solar | Solar Panels, Solar Photovoltaic, Solar Cells, Solar System, Solar Power, Solar Energy, Solar PV a solar consolidator. They do projects where they find 50 people or so in an area who want solar installations and put a bid out to the various solar companies and get a better bid than you could get on your own--even after they take their commission. Be careful of small, local companies. As least hereabouts some have gone belly up leaving customers stranded. A bigger company is likely to be around for a while--and your solar installation should last more than 20 years! And get at least 3 bids to see the different things each contractor has to tell you!
     
  7. strider

    strider Active Member

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    Ugh. I switched to PG&E's EV TOU rate and it's worked out much better than the standard rate for us. But we're near the coast so no air conditioning and both my wife and I work during the day. Also PG&E seems cheaper - IIRC peak is $0.30 and midnight to 7:00 os $0.055 jumping to $0.11 in the second tier. Guess jus the peak rate is cheaper. Daytime power for us is just cable modem, 1 laptop, Tivo, and refrigerator so jacking that rate hasn't hurt that much and the cheaper nighttime rates have helped a lot. I have a 60-mile commute and my power bill went up $50/month w/ the Tesla. I was putting $240/month worth of premium in my Corvette for the same driving...

    If I ever buy a house I'll definitely install solar but for now the TOU rate is working...
     
  8. Ardie

    Ardie Member

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    firealarm,

    Yeah, Southern California Edison rates are pretty stiff.
    There are roughly 3 options:

    a) Do nothing, and remain on the existing 5-tier residental rate. As you use more electricity, you hop up into the next higher tier. The amounts (in kWh) per tier will vary by region. My region's rates in central Orange County are Tier-1: $0.13, Tier-2: $0.16, Tier-3: $0.24, Tier-4: $0.27, Tier-5: $0.31. Ouch.

    b) Sign up for the (single meter) time-of-use rate, also known as TOU-D-TEV. There is a peak rate (10:00am-6:00pm), an off-peak rate (6:00pm-12:00m & 6:00am-10:00am), and a super-off-peak rate (12:00m-6:00am). There are also 2 tiers for each usage. And there are different winter and summer rates for all of this.
    Peak Tier-1 / Tier-2: $0.03 / $0.33
    Off-peak Tier-1 / Tier-2: $0.07 / $0.18
    Super-off-peak Tier-1 / Tier-2: $0.07 / $0.12
    (Note that you can take advantage of the off-peak and super-off-peak times in your household as well as the electric car.)

    c) Sign up for the (two meter) electric vehicle plan, also known as TOU-EV-1. Your existing meter is billed at your existing rate (probably the 5-tier rate mentioned above). You add a *second* electrical meter, and it is used *only* for the electric vehicle. There is a peak rate (12:00n-9:00p), and an off-peak rate (9:00p-12:00n). And there are different summer and winter rates.
    Edison will give you the 2nd meter for free (aren't they nice?), but you will have to pay for the installation.

    - - -

    Option (a) is by far the most expensive. Pumping some 25 kWh (or more) per day will certainly gain you Tier-5 status in no time. With this rate, your electric miles will cost about half of what it costs in gasoline miles.

    Option (b) is cheaper, and even more so if you diligently set up your car to recharge after midnight, when you get the super-off-peak rate. Whether it be their level-1 or level-2 rate, your electric miles will be roughly 1/4 the price of our gasoline miles.

    Option (c) is the cheapest, electric car-wise. A bit of a pain to set up the electric meter and the charging station (EVSE) on that line, and you don't get to save by running a thrifty household.

    - - -

    Option (d) might be to go solar. The typical solar panel setup does not feed electricity directly into the car or home, but instead feeds it to Southern California Edison (!) They buy the electricity from you (at the peak rate). You recharge your car from Edison's power (at the super-off-peak rate). The differential may mean that your electricity bill is $0.00.

    Find a solar panel company that you like (such as Verengo, Solar City, or Real Goods Solar). Have them put up solar panels. They can sell the panels or lease the panels. Their sales pitch is to lease it to you for the price of what you are saving in your electricity use, so your actual costs doesn't change. I know it may sound like so much sales hokum, but when you pencil it out, it begins to make sense in an odd sort of way.

    - - -

    Bottom line, lousy electricity rates or not, it sure beats buying gasoline...


    -- Ardie
     
  9. shokunin

    shokunin P85 & S40

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    Timothy, thanks for the information! I'll give the companies you linked to call.

    I was mainly dealing with Sunpower elite dealers, and even then, the reviews on the net were quite mediocre. Too many people "hopping" into solar as a side-business to their roofings, electrical, or general contractor business. I'd rather not take my chances that they'd still be in business 5-10, let alone 20 years from now.
     
  10. firealarm

    firealarm Member

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    Thanks for the info! I would ultimately go with Option C, however, there is another upfront cost added to the car. I may have to start with just using the standard meter and paying .31. My estimate to fill up a 300 mile battery would be about $28. Much higher than I thought.
     
  11. Timothy

    Timothy Driving on Sunshine

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    Well, in the interim, try option (b). Then just set your car's computer to charge not when you plug it in when you get home, but when the rates go down at night. That's what I do--always charge at the lowest rate unless there is a special reason to charge at a high rate.
     
  12. Lloyd

    Lloyd Active Member

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  13. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    Ontario, Canada does not have EV rates, but we are deployed 100% with smart meters and have TOU rates in effect. My "all-in" rates (including taxes, regulatory, loss adjustments and so forth) are: Off-Peak - 12.52 cents, Mid-Peak - 16.85 cents and On-Peak - 19.19 cents.

    Fortunately, my Off-Peak period runs from 7:00 PM to 7:00 AM and all day weekends and holidays so I effectively charge at 12.52 cents.
     
  14. Ampster

    Ampster Member

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    Decrease regulation of monopoly to get lower rates is the opposite of what happened in California in recent past. We actually did deregulate public utilities and our rates are higher. At this point I prefer to game the system by selling at high rates (solar generating) and buying at low rates (charging car at super off peak).
     
  15. Chris1howell

    Chris1howell Member

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    Option 1 - works out really well if you have solar and EV... You get credit at the high rate and consume at much lower rates.
     
  16. simplesolar

    simplesolar Member

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    Go Solar and get on TOU-EV. Depending on how much your bill is. You can wipe all that out with not that big of a system. PM me if you want more info on solar and TOU-EV rates.
     
  17. RandyS

    RandyS Fan of Elon

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    Lloyd, I wouldn't really phrase it that way...The issue is that some people are paying less than the cost to serve them (which is subsidized by other ratepayers), and some people are paying much more than their fair share (upper tiered rates have been loaded with all recent rate increases and lower tiers have been left at below market rates due to legislation). The whole issue about rate reform is to try and make it so that people pay more towards the correct amount for what they're using or services they're getting. They probably won't touch low income rates since everyone seems to want to keep those in place...So it's not necessarily about "lower electricity rates" but a more equitable distribution...
     
  18. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Active Member

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    My suggestion would always be to go TOU or real-time because they better reflect the true economics of electricity. I don't know your current system in detail, but it really seems unwieldy and it should be eliminated. The one thing I disagree with the petition on is that you shouldn't protect people from the real costs of electricity. If basic costs are high, that means welfare and minimum wages should be affected, not electricity bills but increases generally shouldn't be hidden. Cross-subsidy just encourages inefficiency and discourages effective use.

    So, think of the S and your other use seoarately. Model S charged at night will be cheap, solar ca be installed to help with the high daytime costs and then you can seek efficiency improvements to help lower other use. Eliminating vampires, improving home insulation, efficient appliances, avoiding hot appliances during hot days to lower A/C load etc. Note also that when you have TOU you have the opportunity to peak shave by moving other electricity use to off peak. For example, having switched our supply to TOU we now do dishwashing and laundry off peak.
     
  19. Timothy

    Timothy Driving on Sunshine

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    So I put in a Solar system 4 years ago and it was big enough to zero out my electrical bill. Then I got the Roadster and I still zeroed out. As it turns out I use 80% of my electricity in off peak hours, so TOU is great for me. For some reason I had a rate schedule called TOU-D-2 for several years before I put in the solar system. I was able to keep it 'grandfathered' in when SCE made changes. Since I zeroed out, I really didn't pay much attention to it. Peak was 10-6 M-F, off-peak the rest of the time.

    Then this spring I got a notice that TOU-D-2 had been discontinued and that I was arbitrarily switched to TOU-D-T, a new rate schedule, that though still TOU, was tiered. I tried to run numbers to see where that would leave me, but I had difficulty getting it accurate and it was a lot of work. Since the peak is tiered, I don't get as much credit for generating as I did before, and the hours are less advantageous. I figured I would be as much as 40% in the hole.

    I called SCE hoping they could run my numbers through their computer and give me some answers. After all, my data is all captured on their smart meter, and could be plugged in to a computer program to easily see what my bill would be on the new rate plan, right? Wrong! They wouldn't do it.

    So I called my solar installer, REC. They ran my numbers originally and sized my system appropriately. I sent them my last year's bills, and asked them what size system on the new rate plan would it take to zero out. I figured that was the best approximation I would get. I haven't heard back yet.

    My wife has put up with my car addiction ever since my MG-TD in college. I have driven a sports car for over 40 years now. MGs, Fiat Spiders, and for many years an Alfa Spider--and then the Tesla. Now she decided she wanted to get into the act and her FIAT 500e was delivered last week--and she now is an aficionado also!

    So now 2 EVs to charge. We probably will charge 10,000 miles a year between them at home--the rest of our miles on the road or in an ICE for trips. So how does that affect our electrical consumption? We called SCE and they said if TOU-D-T worked for us (I think it does--though probably not as good as TOU-D-2) that the EV TOU rate would probably work even better.

    Here are the current SCE rate schedules (Summer only as with solar that is where I get the biggest bang for the buck):

    TOU-D-T
    Peak M-F 12-6pm.
    tier 1 $0.28 tier 2 $0.47

    Off Peak --all other times
    tier 1 $0.12 tier 2 $0.36

    TOU-D EV
    Peak 10-6 (different hours) M-F
    tier 1 $0.31 tier 2 $0.47

    Off Peak 6 pm to midnight and 6 am-10 am
    tier 1 $0.12 tier 2 $0.27

    Night -Midnight to 6 am 7days a week
    flat rate $0.09

    So the cars, dishwasher, and some of the laundry can be timed to use electricity after midnight. How will it all work out? I'll tell you in a year!
     
  20. Ampster

    Ampster Member

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    I am on the SCE TOU DTEV rate and I have solar. That rate plan works for me. I didn't have to wait a year to find out either. I saw it on my first bill. Also you can see it on sce.com on an hourly basis.
     

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