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External Mount Sunpass and 95 Express HOV Exemption

Discussion in 'Florida' started by randompersonx, Dec 17, 2014.

  1. randompersonx

    randompersonx Member

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    Based on threads here and the official forum, it seems that there is a well known issue with Sunpass working through (most) windshields. The recommendation is to call and order the external mount Sunpass and install it in the nose-cone.

    There is also the HOV Exemption for ILEV vehicles which does include the Tesla, allowing you to use HOV lanes, including the 95 Express lanes in Miami-Dade county. The tolls here can be quite high ($10 at times), and the exemption is quite valuable.

    The 95 Express website states:
    "If you have a SunPass transponder you will need to indicate which type below so SFCS can provide you with a transponder shield. You will be responsible for shielding your SunPass transponder when using the 95 Express Lanes as a toll free-user or you may be responsible for any toll charges incurred. "

    My understanding of this means that there is therefore no way to shield the external mount only when riding the 95 Express lanes, and therefore this option is impossible.

    What have others done?
     
  2. robaross

    robaross P4550

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    I wondered the same thing since I am having WPB service center install an external sunpass behind the nose cone after Jan 1st. I just sent this to 95 Express: "I drive a Tesla Model S, which is exempt from express lane tolls. I have applied for and applied my sticker. However, an external sunpass is required due to a coated windshield. Since the external sunpass cannot be shielded, how do I receive the benefit of no tolls in the express lanes?" I will post any response I receive.
     
  3. Bill D

    Bill D Member

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    #3 Bill D, Dec 17, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2014
    Here's my experience - In Feb 2014, I installed my new external mount Sunpass transponder behind my nosecone and registered for 95 Express. I did not put the 95 Express sticker on my car (I keep it in the glove box). I only have the FL state HOV sticker on my car.

    Like you, I was concerned, but - I only use the 95 Express lanes about once or twice per month and I've checked my online Sunpass activity log after each use and I've never yet seen a charge for my 95 Express lane use, so they somehow know I'm exempt, but I don't know how.

    My external transponder works perfectly. I've driven several times to/from Orlando on the Turnpike and on the Beeline and other FL toll roads and every charge on my online activity log has been a TTOL (which means the automatic reader worked). I have never seen an ITOL on my activity, which is when the automatic reader fails and a human has to view the tag image. BTW, TTOLs show up in the online activity instantly, but ITOLs often show up in the online activity log much later, sometimes a day or two later.
     
  4. DJ Frustration

    DJ Frustration Model X Sig, Former Model S, Model 3 Res

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    Stop, stop, stop. There is absolutely no need to mount a Sunpass transponder anywhere on your car. I've been registered in the Sunpass system for nearly two years now of owning our Model S. If your car is registered in Sunpass with a transponder assigned to it, you do not need to have the transponder "communicate" with any Sunpass toll system. Instead they will take a picture of your license plate and bill you the Sunpass discounted rate. I've been doing this for a looooong time and have never been overcharged. The only time I pull out the transponder from our glove box is when I'm at the airport and I want to pay for parking using the Sunpass.

    Additionally, I'm registered for the 95 Express freebie and you need to shield your transponder anyways. Have never been charged for 95 Express.

    In summary, as long as you are registered in their system you do NOT need to use your transponder.

    A neat benefit is that I get Model S glamour shots of the back of our car by logging into the Sunpass website and clicking on account activity.
     
  5. Bill D

    Bill D Member

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    It sounds like the SunPass IT folks are one step ahead of the 95 Express instructions to shield the transponder because they simply never bill registered 95 Express vehicles whether they use a transponder or use Toll-by-Plate.

    Looking at the SunPass website and interactive map - http://www.floridasturnpike.com/TollCalcV3/index.htm - it seems Toll-by-Plate doesn't extend north of Ft Lauderdale and the toll prices charged are higher for Toll-by-Plate than using a transponder. If someone is a heavy toll road user or they travel north often, a transponder may be better. Other than that, Toll-by-Plate is all you need.
     
  6. Larry Chanin

    Larry Chanin Model S Perf Sig 1055

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    Hi,

    I have purchased one of those suction cup SunPass transponders. I found that if you velcro it to the back of the rear view mirror stalk it works everytime when going through SunPass toll booths. Since its easily accessible to you it is convenient to shield it on those occasions when you are on the 95 Express Lanes.

    Larry
     
  7. zzzzdoc

    zzzzdoc Member

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    Larry:

    Would a conventional stick-on SunPass sticker work on the Sunshine Skyway and Crosstown/Selmon SunPass tolls? I figure there's a pretty good chance you have used them living in Sarasota.
     
  8. Brightonuk

    Brightonuk Member

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    That's good news so now I need to remove the bumper mount transponder I installed a few months back :cursing:
     
  9. Larry Chanin

    Larry Chanin Model S Perf Sig 1055

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    Hi Alan,

    In theory the stick-on SunPass should work on those tolls, since my suction cup SunPass works on those roads. However, the Model S has a metalic tint embedded in the windshield that blocks the radio frequency of the stick-on SunPass and I have not been able to sucessfully get it to work attached to my windshield even when it was mounted over the black area next to the rear view mirror.

    Larry
     
  10. zzzzdoc

    zzzzdoc Member

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    Great. So glad I bought one earlier this week.

    In fact, the black area is significantly smaller on the D (with the new camera up there), so I'm not too hopeful.

    The stick on works on all my other cars. But they don't have metallic windshield tints.
     
  11. Lawsteve

    Lawsteve MCATDT

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    Good luck. I tried the stick on in several spots behind my mirror and around the black film area. It never worked. I now have the external mount device behind my nose cone. It took 5 minutes for the service center to install and works great. I do not use the S Fla 95 Express lanes.
     
  12. Bill D

    Bill D Member

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    According to a recent article in the Ft Lauderdale Sun Sentinel, our 95 Express Lane toll exemption will end in Sept 2017.

    In fact, it appears that all nationwide exemptions for HOV lanes may also end in Sept 2017 - Alternative Fuels Data Center
     
  13. zzzzdoc

    zzzzdoc Member

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    Where do you get the external mount device? I saw a brief mention of it on the SunPass website, but no links or more specific information about it.

    Will the new electronics / radar in the P85D get in the way of this solution?
     
  14. Bill D

    Bill D Member

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    #14 Bill D, Jan 3, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2015
    I mounted mine dead center on the front of the steel bumper behind the nosecone with its printed phone number 888-TOLL-FLA facing forward, which is also the number I called to order it.

    I believe the P85D electronics/radar is all below the steel bumper, but I'm not sure if it would interfere.

    Here's an interesting list of cars with SunPass windshield transponder problems (MS is the last one listed) - Special Windshield Mounting Tips
     
  15. Larry Chanin

    Larry Chanin Model S Perf Sig 1055

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    Hi Alan,

    I bought my SunPass with suction cups at Publix. I believe it was $25.

    I can't definitively answer your question regarding the P85D electronics, but I doubt it will be a problem.

    Larry
     
  16. Racerx22b

    Racerx22b Member

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    #16 Racerx22b, May 19, 2015
    Last edited: May 19, 2015
    Just spent 20mins on the phone with Sunpass. They said there is NO WAY you can prevent being charged for the 95 express lanes with a bumper mount sunpass. They said to call them to get charges removed.

    My wife will not buy into the system of going with no surpass and relying on the license plate reading system so this is a PIA.

    Jason
     
  17. DJ Frustration

    DJ Frustration Model X Sig, Former Model S, Model 3 Res

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    This is precisely why there is no need to mount a sunpass anywhere in a Model S.

    Just make sure the transponder is linked to your license plate on the Sunpass website. Then all you need to do is keep it in your glove box for the infrequent times that you travel somewhere that isn't using license plate readers (aka airport Sunpass Express lanes). Simply open your pano roof (or window) and hold the Sunpass transponder up. Bada bing.

    Been saying this for years now.
     
  18. Bill D

    Bill D Member

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    I have an external transponder and I'm registered with 95 Express. I can't explain why this happens, but here's what I see:

    I don't use the 95 Express lanes often but after each time I do, I check my activity log and I've never seen a charge for 95 Express lane use. It's possible my transponder failed to work but I've driven several times to/from Orlando on the Turnpike and on the Beeline and other FL toll roads and every charge on my online activity log has been a TTOL (which means the transponder worked).

    I just now looked at my log and saw my first ITOL (which means the transponder failed and a human had to view the tag image). It was not on 95 Express. It was in Miami, $0.30 for the 87th Ave ramp onto 836 eastbound on April 1, but it wasn't posted until May 10 (over 5 weeks later). This is the first ITOL that I recall ever seeing on my log.

    The next time I use the 95 Express lanes, I'll check my log and post what I see. The mystery continues....
     
  19. jbcarioca

    jbcarioca Active Member

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    I do have a nosecone mounted Sunpass, but I also have a similar technology parking sticker for my condominium, and they do not offer an external mount. On my P85D, mounted precisely on the upper right hand area above the mirror (from drivers perspective) that access pass works every time. I experimented with other location within the cross-hatched black area and they did NOT work. I am convinced YMMV because the exact area that works seems not to be identical for all P85D even.
     
  20. Larry Chanin

    Larry Chanin Model S Perf Sig 1055

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    Hi Jason,

    Another option is as I described earlier. Based on jbcarioca's remarks it should work for the newer cars.

    With the transponder being Velcroed to the back of the rear view mirror stalk it is easily accessible. So on those occasions where you are on the HOV lanes remove it and place in in the glove box or a foil bag. When you need it for other toll situations stick it to the mirror stalk. It has worked 100% of the time for me when mounted as described.

    Larry
     

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