Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register

Learn from my mistakes... lookback at my botched installation (NorCal PG&E Territory)

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,516
892
East Bay NorCal
OMG... I was granted PTO today!

1616443434175.png


Like.... everyone should get solar and ESS. The process is sooooo easy!

You just need a year of your time, and people on TMC to help you every step of the way!

Now comes the 18 month wait to see if the SGIP folks actually grant me that large-scale resi rebate...
 

jboy210

Supporting Member
Dec 2, 2016
5,097
3,169
Northern California
OMG... I was granted PTO today!

View attachment 647072

Like.... everyone should get solar and ESS. The process is sooooo easy!

You just need a year of your time, and people on TMC to help you every step of the way!

Now comes the 18 month wait to see if the SGIP folks actually grant me that large-scale resi rebate...
Congrats. And it only took twice as long as gestating a human!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Electrph

jedmo

Member
Sep 9, 2020
115
49
Northern California
OMG... I was granted PTO today!

View attachment 647072

Like.... everyone should get solar and ESS. The process is sooooo easy!

You just need a year of your time, and people on TMC to help you every step of the way!

Now comes the 18 month wait to see if the SGIP folks actually grant me that large-scale resi rebate...
Nice man! I am still waiting....Tesla came on Thursday to take their ridiculous pictures with the tape measure to show the measuring tool and the distance from the gas riser and the closest AC/DC unit, which was the solar disconnect...
 

SMAlset

Well-Known Member
Mar 4, 2017
9,067
9,786
SF Bay Area
I've probably spent too much time in corporate; but are there state or federal grants for programs to help disadvantaged classes of homeowners investigate/learn where their energy is going so they can make smarter decisions? PG&E has the CARES and FERA programs to give low income folks cheap rates (hence why the blended rate across California isn't so bad). But these programs don't actually help someone learn what is happening in their home. It just gets the homeowner the blah propaganda around lowering the brightness of a TV to save power or to jump in a pool.

Back in 2011 or so, Energy Upgrade California was actually pushed by the PUC as a effort to help homeowners improve the efficiency and comfort of their homes. They'd help with discounted HERS tests, do energy audits, provide incentives for upgrades etc. But because it was implemented as a "pull" approach (educate contractors to trickle down benefits to homeowners) it was fairly ineffective at helping low income or seniors. It basically became a way for wealthy folks to get discount on huge home improvement projects.


Now Energy Upgrade California is just the sounding board for the CPUC to tell people to reduce using energy from 4pm to 9pm. So much for helping people understand how to make real, beneficial changes to their homes.

But, I feel like the spirit of what they the project was trying to accomplish in 2011 was noble. I wonder if there are still programs someone like "Margaret" can reach out to in order to get some help to figure things out. I guess we can invite her to post on TMC, but that doesn't seem like a scalable/structured approach.

I can attest the stupid nasty grams from PG&E don't actually help you figure out what is "wrong". Because PG&E makes it seem like your house is the problem the whole time, so you'll feel like you suck. Of course it's your fault for not having the perfect brand new home. But if you compare your energy use to the national average. you'll end up well below national EIA targets. And it turns out PG&E just loves to screw with people this way.

I don't have as negative opinion of PG&E's efforts to assist homeowners with reducing energy costs. I'm pretty sure in our PG&E bills we've seen that you can call and have PG&E do an energy audit for you. Pretty sure that's free too. I know my mom's utility back east also offers a program like this to spot areas of concern or make suggestions on making homes more energy efficient. Suppose suggestions can also be as simple as weather stripping, caulking aroud windows and doors, adding that shrink film to single pane windows in the winter to add a layer of air insulation, garage door insulation for homes with livable space above the garage, solar shades or window tinting. Lots of ways actually.

PG&E also has an online Home Energy Checkup for tips to improve your home's energy usage. They also publish online an 2021 Residentail Rebate Catalog. Their Home Money Saver Residential Rebates Program on appliances can help as well. Some of those energy upgrades may need to go through a contractor which you mentioned above when having products installed. When we update our old furnace/AC unit I hope there will be rebates available for it but we'll be going from a 10SEER unit to something much better rated so that alone will save us money/kWs over the year. Think right now the rebates are just thermostate and water heated related but could be wrong.

I think if people want/need help they need to be proactive and ask their utility company, appliance and hardware stores themselves as to what is available as a first step. The onus falls on the renter/homeowner as it should be as a consumer.
 
Last edited:

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,516
892
East Bay NorCal
I don't have as negative opinion of PG&E's efforts to assist homeowners with reducing energy costs. I'm pretty sure in our PG&E bills we've seen that you can call and have PG&E do an energy audit for you. Pretty sure that's free too. I know my mom's utility back east also offers a program like this to spot areas of concern or make suggestions on making homes more energy efficient. Suppose suggestions can also be as simple as weather stripping, caulking aroud windows and doors, adding that shrink film to single pane windows in the winter to add a layer of air insulation, garage door insulation for homes with livable space above the garage, solar shades or window tinting. Lots of ways actually.

PG&E also has an online Home Energy Checkup for tips to improve your home's energy usage. They also publish online an 2021 Residentail Rebate Catalog. Their Home Money Saver Residential Rebates Program on appliances can help as well. Some of those energy upgrades may need to go through a contractor which you mentioned above when having products installed. When we update our old furnace/AC unit I hope there will be rebates available for it but we'll be going from a 10SEER unit to something much better rated so that alone will save us money/kWs over the year. Think right now the rebates are just thermostate and water heated related but could be wrong.

I think if people want/need help they need to be proactive and ask their utility company, appliance and hardware stores themselves as to what is available as a first step. The onus falls on the renter/homeowner as it should be as a consumer.


While I agree that there are some programs to help address topical / easy stuff, The root cause of most of the high-energy nastygrams is simply that PG&E sucks. Yes, those links you provided can help shave a few kWh off on in month, but there's something more systemic that is wrong than some band aid recommendations. But PG&E and folks always point to band aids as fixes the lazy homeowner isn't doing to get their costs down.

As I've mentioned in other threads, after buying this house and moving in, I started getting PG&E's letters about how crazy of an energy offender I was. Reading their materials, I thought my home was built out of swiss cheese, and my family was flushing energy down the toilet as the least efficient morons to walk the earth.

I did everything within reason on their stupid audit.

I got brand new 20 SEER ACs... everything energy-star certified... LED bulbs everywhere... HERS tests... put timers on all lights that may be left on, wrapped my hot water heater, put the heat-reflective crap in my limited attic space, installed an attic fan, blah blah blah. Imagine if I didn't have the resources to put $40,000 of new appliances and upgrades into my home. I'd just be left blaming myself and my stupidity.

But after spending all that money, the problem kept happening. PG&E wouldn't let up. Every month "did you know you SUCK???" I'd ask my neighbors about it, and they said the only way they got PG&E off their backs was to never run the air conditioning, blackout shade all their windows, stopped washing the dishes, and limited the drier only to linens and sheets. Of course nobody wants to live like the 1930s, so they just pay their sky-high energy bill and keep having PG&E tell them they sucked.

Well guess what, the problem isn't me or my neighbors. The Problem is PG&E. If I use 700 kWh in February, I get hit with their nasty gram. 700 kWh is like nothing. If I go up to 1,400 kWh in the summer, that's still below the national average for homes with air conditioning! PG&E gaslit my ignorant self into thinking I was the problem. The problem is PG&E and their BS. But while I was stupidly fumbling around wondering if I could save a few bucks turning down the brightness of my TV to save on power, I wasn't paying attention to PG&E and their huge waste. This distraction is what PG&E wants. Homeowners blaming homeowners for poorly managing their home energy footprint is what PG&E wants.

Homeowners simply shouldn't have to sit in the dark, staring at a wall to get their energy bills down thinking they themselves are the problem. The "Margaret" in the article basically said her bill went from $90 and doubled. What isn't clear is if her kWh usage also doubled. Assuming she has a energy problem that isn't clear to her, then PG&E's checklist of "help" simply doesn't support a homeowner to "fix" that sort of problem. So she sits in the dark and stares at unclean dishes and wet clothes because folks tell her that her own behavior is at fault. It's just stupid.
 
Last edited:

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,516
892
East Bay NorCal
PG&E also has an online Home Energy Checkup for tips to improve your home's energy usage. They also publish online an 2021 Residentail Rebate Catalog. Their Home Money Saver Residential Rebates Program on appliances can help as well. Some of those energy upgrades may need to go through a contractor which you mentioned above when having products installed. When we update our old furnace/AC unit I hope there will be rebates available for it but we'll be going from a 10SEER unit to something much better rated so that alone will save us money/kWs over the year. Think right now the rebates are just thermostate and water heated related but could be wrong.

FYI, the rebates have severely diminished now. You probably got your HVAC partially subsidized under the old "energy upgrade california" program I mentioned a few posts ago. Those programs helped many homeowners (and helped some contractors upsell people to some ridiculous upgrades). But it was very costly for the state and ultimately I think only about 40,000 homes benefited.

My boomer neighbor (dude with all the propane tanks) has the identical floorplan as my house. He did the full audit and spent thousands of extra dollars to make his home energy efficient under that old energy upgrade California program. His contractor used the "savings" from the incentive to upgrade his HVAC to the topest-of-top-of-the-line that was available from Carrier at the time. Like two all-variable-speed-condensers-and-air-handlers-with-every-bell-and-whistle-imaginable-plus-crankcase-heaters. It didn't really matter to his bottom line bill. He still asks his wife to sit in the dark when it's 100F outside because the AC is too expensive to run. And he's on the medical baseline.

If I were that guy, I'd just set my two baller ass AC's to 72F all day long and tell PG&E to shove it... but instead he listens to PG&E's propaganda and doesn't want to be an energy waster.

You are correct, the current residential rebates are only for smart thermostats, heat pump water heaters (which you will want to avoid like the plague if PG&E is already crapping on you for high electricity usage), and gasoline backup generators to run a well pump.
 
Last edited:

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,516
892
East Bay NorCal
Whohooo PG&E moved my SGIP from the "Reservation Request Form" (RRF) Step 1 into the "Proof of Project Milestone" (PPM) Step 2.

Assuming they actually accept everything in PPM then it's on to Technical Review. I hope they don't send yet another person out to my house to inspect the installed gear (and disconnects).

So excited....
 

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,516
892
East Bay NorCal
No joke, PG&E has requested a field inspection of my system. They’re sending out someone to test everything and take photos.

I’m sure he will appreciate these disconnects as much as I do.

@Vines have you heard of any customers going through all this? Didn’t think so.
 

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,464
423
auburn, ca
No joke, PG&E has requested a field inspection of my system. They’re sending out someone to test everything and take photos.

I’m sure he will appreciate these disconnects as much as I do.

@Vines have you heard of any customers going through all this? Didn’t think so.
I hope they do not like me as much as they seem to like you
 

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,516
892
East Bay NorCal
I get the feeling you specifically are on some list / spreadsheet at PGE and they are like "mwahahaha.... lets keep @!$$%[email protected]#$ with Mr. @holeydonut ..... I know we never send anyone for inspection right before PTO but for THIS guy? Roll the truck!!!!":cool:

Lol.. you are almost there it sounds like.


Lol, they're going to roll another truck now that I have PTO to confirm that the system is operating as permitted and per the NEM2-MT interconnection agreement. This new roll is for SGIP purposes.

I'm sure in 2025 they'll roll yet another truck to make sure I didn't deposit the SGIP rebate into a North Korean bank account.
 

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,464
423
auburn, ca
Lol, they're going to roll another truck now that I have PTO to confirm that the system is operating as permitted and per the NEM2-MT interconnection agreement. This new roll is for SGIP purposes.

I'm sure in 2025 they'll roll yet another truck to make sure I didn't deposit the SGIP rebate into a North Korean bank account.
I just do not understand what they are trying to do to you
 

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,516
892
East Bay NorCal
I just do not understand what they are trying to do to you

They’re intentionality harassing me to make going green as difficult and time consuming as possible. The PG&E people that I’ve had at my house have accused sunrun of abusing their position and installing shady systems and screwing homeowners.

That “cantankerous” person that was at my house said I was being duped by Sunrun. He also added that PG&E has no interest in profiting from me, but my going green does take away from pg&e’s ability to operate fairly (which is part of their guaranteed profit). PG&E is interested in keeping their monopoly since PG&E knows energy better than Sunrun. So getting energy from PG&E is safer and better.

It’s all a steaming pile of crap intended to make any project the worst possible experience. None of my neighbors want to get solar now because they don’t want to put up with this crap. It’s now been over a year since the project started. I’m just a stubborn SOB so I’m fighting every step of the way and doing whatever it takes to get this system in.
 
  • Like
Reactions: dabreutx

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,464
423
auburn, ca
They’re intentionality harassing me to make going green as difficult and time consuming as possible. The PG&E people that I’ve had at my house have accused sunrun of abusing their position and installing shady systems and screwing homeowners.

That “cantankerous” person that was at my house said I was being duped by Sunrun. He also added that PG&E has no interest in profiting from me, but my going green does take away from pg&e’s ability to operate fairly (which is part of their guaranteed profit). PG&E is interested in keeping their monopoly since PG&E knows energy better than Sunrun. So getting energy from PG&E is safer and better.

It’s all a steaming pile of crap intended to make any project the worst possible experience. None of my neighbors want to get solar now because they don’t want to put up with this crap. It’s now been over a year since the project started. I’m just a stubborn SOB so I’m fighting every step of the way and doing whatever it takes to get this system in.
So far I guess I am lucky, zero issues from PGE. Was surprised by SGIP which is why I only have 5 batteries instead of 7. :(

But, until I get PTO, shall see. I missed a few things in my NEM stuff yesterday and wrote the installer. Will see what happens.

Now, we do know some of the solar outfits have been a little shady at times, do you not think?
 

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,516
892
East Bay NorCal
So far I guess I am lucky, zero issues from PGE. Was surprised by SGIP which is why I only have 5 batteries instead of 7. :(

But, until I get PTO, shall see. I missed a few things in my NEM stuff yesterday and wrote the installer. Will see what happens.

Now, we do know some of the solar outfits have been a little shady at times, do you not think?

Everybody is shady lol. But one has a government granted monopoly and craps on everybody in Northern California. And the other purports to help people get energy independence while signing unsuspecting people into whack loans and leases.

I get it, PG&E doesn’t like me, and they don’t like Sunrun. And Sunrun doesn’t like PG&E much... and I’m pretty sure Sunrun doesn’t like me.

I just want some goddamn solar and batteries. PG&E didn’t let me only get 2 Powerwalls, so I got 3 with the help of SGIP. Why they need to personally inspect my system while everyone else doesn’t experience this shows how petty the nations largest utility can be if it suits their ego.
 

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,464
423
auburn, ca
Everybody is shady lol. But one has a government granted monopoly and craps on everybody in Northern California. And the other purports to help people get energy independence while signing unsuspecting people into whack loans and leases.

I get it, PG&E doesn’t like me, and they don’t like Sunrun. And Sunrun doesn’t like PG&E much... and I’m pretty sure Sunrun doesn’t like me.

I just want some goddamn solar and batteries. PG&E didn’t let me only get 2 Powerwalls, so I got 3 with the help of SGIP. Why they need to personally inspect my system while everyone else doesn’t experience this shows how petty the nations largest utility can be if it suits their ego.
But, seems PGE did help you if you have 3 batteries now :)
 
  • Funny
Reactions: dabreutx

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,516
892
East Bay NorCal
But, seems PGE did help you if you have 3 batteries now :)


No, the California legislature that came up with the SGIP helped me out (and presumably are helping you as well). PG&E as the administrator has been trying really hard to prevent me from getting it. Specific to the SGIP process:

1) They made me abandon E-TOU-C to go to EV2-A even though my MIL is on some equipment that qualifies for medical baseline
2) They requested a "max out your house demand" test, even though it's not actually expressly written on the SGIP docs.
3) They requested a separate "discharge data" to be provided in 15 minute intervals
4) They are now sending someone to my house to make an independent assessment because they don't trust the County inspectors to have done their job

Yeah, so maybe others had to do #2, but nobody else seems to have done the things #1, 3, 4.
 

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,464
423
auburn, ca
No, the California legislature that came up with the SGIP helped me out (and presumably are helping you as well). PG&E as the administrator has been trying really hard to prevent me from getting it. Specific to the SGIP process:

1) They made me abandon E-TOU-C to go to EV2-A even though my MIL is on some equipment that qualifies for medical baseline
2) They requested a "max out your house demand" test, even though it's not actually expressly written on the SGIP docs.
3) They requested a separate "discharge data" to be provided in 15 minute intervals
4) They are now sending someone to my house to make an independent assessment because they don't trust the County inspectors to have done their job

Yeah, so maybe others had to do #2, but nobody else seems to have done the things #1, 3, 4.
SGIP or course does not say for 2 you do a max test. You send them in 12 months of green button data, and they just look for the max 1 hour
use. If it is more than batteries requested, (which is only needed for over 2), then its a non issue. But if more, like I and others had, we had to provide data we used that much. Totally fair IMO.

So, you are not on medical baseline in your house? If so, you can keep E-tou-c

No idea on 3

4, well, man, what are they hoping to find?
 

Vines

Active Member
Jul 20, 2018
1,876
2,204
Silicon Valley, CA
No joke, PG&E has requested a field inspection of my system. They’re sending out someone to test everything and take photos.

I’m sure he will appreciate these disconnects as much as I do.

@Vines have you heard of any customers going through all this? Didn’t think so.
Actually this is happening to something like 10% of customers, and everyone who dares to question the mighty utility lol. It used to be triggered every NGOM, but I think you never had this requirement? Can't quite remember if you bought yours when they still required this or afterwards.
 

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,464
423
auburn, ca
Actually this is happening to something like 10% of customers, and everyone who dares to question the mighty utility lol. It used to be triggered every NGOM, but I think you never had this requirement? Can't quite remember if you bought yours when they still required this or afterwards.
What is PGE checking for? what issues have they found?
 

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top