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Making a Vacation Rental EV Ready

IchDochNicht

Member
Sep 4, 2016
305
216
Bay Area, CA
I could use some advice on how to best go about this... Last year, I bought a run-down codo in San Diego, 100ft from the beach. Had it gutted, rewired, and completely rebuilt from scratch to the latest standards. Now it is partially our own vacation spot, and partially vacation rental (managed by an agency).

The building has an underground garage, in which I have two tandem spots. There is currently no power available anywhere near my two spots. But I want to install an EV charger.

The President of the HOA is super supportive of me installing the charger. His wife has a Model 3, which helps. :)

But there are some challenges with the building's electrical set-up. The power meter for my unit has a 90Amp fuse only. It powers the condo, including electric heat, stove and dryer (there is no gas in the building). Since there is not enough capacity to hard wire a charger, the electrician offered me the following options:

1. Get an additional meter installed, from which he can route the power. I hear this can take months and potentially cost crazy money. Not sure, if it's easier when a such meter is dedicated to an EV charger.

2. Install an intelligent switch for the EV charger that monitors power consumption in the condo, and directs power to the EV charger only when condo power consumption is below 80% for a period of time. The moment, the condo's use reaches 80% again, it would deactivate power to the EV charger. I'm not sure, if the percentage would be adjustable.

#1 would require two permits: A Meter Permit and an EV Charger Permit, while #2 would only require the latter, and therefore would be faster to complete. I absolutely dread the San Diego Construction Prevention Agency (aka Building Department), which we found difficult to work with during the rest of the renovation.

For the charger, I have a Juicebox Pro40 with a J-1772 plug. I think that's probably the best option, considering that I may have guests with EVs other than Tesla. And I would think that most Tesla owners carry a J-1772 adapter in their car anyway - is that a fair assumption?

I would like to get some opinions on whether it is worth going through the trouble of installing an additional meter, or if the intelligent switch option is sufficient. Any other thoughts would be welcome.



PS: While this is not about the condo itself, here are some links in case you want to visualize where this would go:
- Airbnb
- VRBO
 

DriveMe

Member
Aug 12, 2017
754
1,300
NE OH
First of all, you need to find out (measure) your typical (as well as peak) energy consumption by your condo. Determine whether your 90A line is going to be sufficient for your purposes or not. How often are you going to reach that 80% threshold with EV charging in progress. Based on that, you can then decide which option to choose.

That DCC-9 sounds like a good choice, but only if it’s not going to be turning the circuit off too often.
 
Last edited:

ewoodrick

Well-Known Member
Apr 13, 2018
5,285
4,270
Buford, GA
A NEMA 14-50 is often the best solution. If this isn't possible, just install a 20A 120V plug. There should be enough DC Fast chargers in the area to handle any heavy lifting when needed.
 
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IchDochNicht

Member
Sep 4, 2016
305
216
Bay Area, CA
If the dryer is in the garage, you could get a Dryer Buddy. It is probably the cheapest option.
Unfortunately, that's not an option. The electrical room is not super far, so running conduit from electrical room to parking spot is not too bad.

A NEMA 14-50 is often the best solution. If this isn't possible, just install a 20A 120V plug. There should be enough DC Fast chargers in the area to handle any heavy lifting when needed.
NEMA 14-50 is the goal. Then plug-in the JuiceBox.

Yes, there is a Tesla Supercharger at the Fashion Valley Mall. But it's still a pain to go and charge offsite everytime. Particularly when you are tryin to leave for a 400+ mile drive home.

First of all, you need to find out (measure) your typical (as well as peak) energy consumption by your condo. Determine whether your 90A line is going to be sufficient for your purposes or not. How often are you going to reach that 80% threshold with EV charging in progress. Based on that, you can then decide which option to choose.

That DCC-9 sounds like a good choice, but only if it’s not going to be turning the circuit off too often.
How can I - or my electrical contractor - measure this? I'm not an electrician or engineer.

I would not expect it to hit peak energy all that often. The condo has no AC (not needed at the beach), and it's unlikely we'll run the dryer (in the unit), stove, or heaters very much. The latter may be a bit of a limitation in the winter time, but probably not all night.
 

IchDochNicht

Member
Sep 4, 2016
305
216
Bay Area, CA
Finally had my first guest with a Tesla Model 3. Otherwise, I've been the only one using the charger so far.

I'm thrilled that people use electrons instead of dino juice and hope this makes a small contribution for a better world.

Since I started this thread:
- We got a new listing page on Airbnb
- Airbnb added a search filter for "EV Charger"
- We created a Facebook Page where people can Like and follow our constant improvement progress
- We listed the charger on PlugShare

Hope we'll see more guests with Teslas in the near future!
 

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