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Home charging, is it worth it?

David29

Active Member
Supporting Member
Aug 1, 2015
2,385
2,032
DEDHAM, MA
If the five minutes is walking time, it might be a non-issue. You can get a little exercise walking back and forth. What about security? Can you leave the car there and not worry about it, running errands nearby while it charges? or do you need to sit there with it for the time to charge? And when you say a "Tesla charging station," do you mean a Supercharger or a destination charger? Makes a huge difference in charging time.
I can tell you that I had no home charging for the first 11 months I owned my Model S, because of the complications getting permission to install a charging station in my condominium parking lot. Like you, perhaps, I was only a couple of miles away from a Tesla service center that has a group of Superchargers. Even with only having to charge 2 or 3 times a week, hanging around the Superchargers got old very fast, especially in the winter. Being able to charge at home is, to me, a practically essential part of the EV experience.
 

ucmndd

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2016
8,370
16,311
California
Charging at home and having a “full tank” every morning is perhaps the #1 convenience of an EV.

Charging at a public station as your only means of energy, even a super convenient one 5 minutes away, is a pain that I would not endure if I didn’t have to.

Circumstances dictate cost, but there are many many many ways to charge at home, most of which cost far less than 1500 pounds, and any of which would be more convenient than needing to drive to an off-site charger.
 
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You will be able to get a 7kW (32A) charger installed for something like £300-400 (rolec or podpoint), using the OLEV grant, so it isn't as expensive as you think.
Alternatively if you know a sparky, or are competent yourself, fitting a RCD, a length of 6mm cable and an interlocked 32A commando socket (which you then use with your UMC which came with the car) will do the same charge rate and will cost <£100 in parts. Obviously you need to do this properly but if you've wired sockets, lights etc. then there is nothing more to it. (you can even get a ground spear earth if you want to be *really* to the book).
Other thing to consider is that supercharging is not the best for your battery, and so doing it exclusively will have a negative impact compared to just using it when you need to.
Sitting in the car away from home for any number of minutes gets very boring. it's so much easier to just plug in when you get home and have a full (or however much you need for the day) charge in the morning. I did 2 months without a home charger (lived in a 3rd floor flat so couldn't even 3-pin it) and it was painful. Even if the supercharger is 5 mins walk from home, when you get home late in the evening, having to stay up to go and collect the car an hour and a half later won't be any fun. you can't leave the car all night plugged in to a supercharger.
In summary I would definitely get a home charger - and get on a tariff that gives you cheap-rate charging for a few hours a night. the minor increased cost compared to free supercharging is definitely worth it for the convenience.
 
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Recently bought a p90Dl 2016.
I have a Tesla charging station 5 mins from my home.
Weighing up my options and think it’s not worth me spending £1500 (or whatever they cost) to install at my home when I have one down the road for free.
wondering your opinions and if you think they are worth it?


The short answer is Yes. Charging at home is perhaps the greatest individual benefit of owning an EV.

I would suggest you shop around for options because 1500 seems a quite high price, in any locale. Does that include retrofitting your electrical service? The cost of installing a standard 240V plug that allows you to use the mobile connector should not normally be nearly so high. You really do not need to purchase the Wall Connector to charge your car.
 
You will be able to get a 7kW (32A) charger installed for something like £300-400 (rolec or podpoint), using the OLEV grant, so it isn't as expensive as you think.
Alternatively if you know a sparky, or are competent yourself, fitting a RCD, a length of 6mm cable and an interlocked 32A commando socket (which you then use with your UMC which came with the car) will do the same charge rate and will cost <£100 in parts. Obviously you need to do this properly but if you've wired sockets, lights etc. then there is nothing more to it. (you can even get a ground spear earth if you want to be *really* to the book).
Other thing to consider is that supercharging is not the best for your battery, and so doing it exclusively will have a negative impact compared to just using it when you need to.
Sitting in the car away from home for any number of minutes gets very boring. it's so much easier to just plug in when you get home and have a full (or however much you need for the day) charge in the morning. I did 2 months without a home charger (lived in a 3rd floor flat so couldn't even 3-pin it) and it was painful. Even if the supercharger is 5 mins walk from home, when you get home late in the evening, having to stay up to go and collect the car an hour and a half later won't be any fun. you can't leave the car all night plugged in to a supercharger.
In summary I would definitely get a home charger - and get on a tariff that gives you cheap-rate charging for a few hours a night. the minor increased cost compared to free supercharging is definitely worth it for the convenience.
This is really helpful. Thanks. Didn’t realise that will charge the same rate as a normal charger. That’s brilliant, I’ll speak to a sparky
 

bob_p

Active Member
Apr 5, 2012
3,738
2,947
Where is this?
In Texas, there are multiple websites that compares the various electric plans available in each area, which includes fixed rate plans, plans with free periods (nights, weekends), renewable, buyback, ... There was even a plan that purchased electricity at the same wholesale prices as the power companies - but that plan was discontinued when customers where hit with $9000/KWh charges during the Texas freeze.

Unfortunately, how these plans are compared can be very confusing - because the price they post on the comparison websites are based on assumptions that probably won't apply to any customers.

For example, the Free Nights plan (9PM to 9AM) lists the estimated cost at $.117/KWh. But this is based on an assumption that 45% of the electricity is during the free nights period.

With our solar panels and PowerWalls - and scheduling charging of our S and X during the Free Nights period, we are using 77% of our electricity during the free nights period - which reduces our effective cost to less than $.05/KWh!

Since we have Smart Meters in Texas, someone should provide a tool that takes the actual usage from the preceding 12 months and then calculates how much the electricity would have cost under the various plans - so customers could easily figure out which plans worked best for them.

But... The industry has no incentive to do that, and seems to prefer advertising that makes it difficult to compare the various plans for a specific home.

For anyone with solar panels and PowerWalls (or other energy storage), they should use smart meter data to compare the various plans - especially those with free periods - because it could be much cheaper than getting a fixed rate or buyback plan.
 
  • Informative
Reactions: dark cloud
Recently bought a p90Dl 2016.
I have a Tesla charging station 5 mins from my home.
Weighing up my options and think it’s not worth me spending £1500 (or whatever they cost) to install at my home when I have one down the road for free.
wondering your opinions and if you think they are worth it?
I installed a Tesla wall charger as soon as we bought our car in 2019. Think of the cost as an investment. As more places legislate EVs, the cost will not only be convenient (I love it...plug in and charged the next morning) but a selling point if you move. There was a rebate for installing the charger, as well as I put solar on the house 5 years ago.
 
In Texas, there are multiple websites that compares the various electric plans available in each area, which includes fixed rate plans, plans with free periods (nights, weekends), renewable, buyback, ... There was even a plan that purchased electricity at the same wholesale prices as the power companies - but that plan was discontinued when customers where hit with $9000/KWh charges during the Texas freeze.

Unfortunately, how these plans are compared can be very confusing - because the price they post on the comparison websites are based on assumptions that probably won't apply to any customers.

For example, the Free Nights plan (9PM to 9AM) lists the estimated cost at $.117/KWh. But this is based on an assumption that 45% of the electricity is during the free nights period.

With our solar panels and PowerWalls - and scheduling charging of our S and X during the Free Nights period, we are using 77% of our electricity during the free nights period - which reduces our effective cost to less than $.05/KWh!

Since we have Smart Meters in Texas, someone should provide a tool that takes the actual usage from the preceding 12 months and then calculates how much the electricity would have cost under the various plans - so customers could easily figure out which plans worked best for them.

But... The industry has no incentive to do that, and seems to prefer advertising that makes it difficult to compare the various plans for a specific home.

For anyone with solar panels and PowerWalls (or other energy storage), they should use smart meter data to compare the various plans - especially those with free periods - because it could be much cheaper than getting a fixed rate or buyback plan.


Just fyi, you can go to smartmetertexas.com and download your electricity consumption. You can get the exact readings of your smart meter in 15-minute increments for as long a period as you like.

For example, I was able to plot my average electricity usage across each 15-minute interval for all of 2020 - you can see that I start charging my car at 2:00am every morning.
You can easily use that data to evaluate the cost of different electricity plans. One reason that the electric providers don't do that for you is that they do not have access to your usage data; only the provider you do business with has that information.
 

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bob_p

Active Member
Apr 5, 2012
3,738
2,947
I download the Smart Meter Texas data every month to monitor our energy usage - especially with a plan with free hours or days, that's the only way to really tell how well you are doing - or to use the actual data to project costs under alternative plans.

When comparing plans, I found the price listed on the comparison sites were not representative of what we would have paid under those plans.

I suspect most people are unaware they can get the actual data - in 15 minute intervals.

It's been very helpful for us - and helped us reduce our electric costs an additional 50% after installing our solar panels and PowerWalls.
 
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dark cloud

Active Member
Apr 14, 2018
2,203
2,570
BC
Recently bought a p90Dl 2016.
I have a Tesla charging station 5 mins from my home.
Weighing up my options and think it’s not worth me spending £1500 (or whatever they cost) to install at my home when I have one down the road for free.
wondering your opinions and if you think they are worth it?
And maybe, in a few years, this could happen at your supercharger as well?

 

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