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

Possible to use Tesla Solar Subscription on an "as-needed" basis?

heytae

Member
Mar 9, 2015
147
60
Cupertino, CA
We've had our 4.5kWh PV system for 8 years, and 3 Powerwalls for the past 7 months. During the winter months, I learned that our PV system is a bit undersized for our needs. Summer time is proving to be no issue, as I expected.

I'm considering adding a 2nd PV system, mostly for the winter months, using the Tesla Solar Subscription during just the months we want it. To charge our Powerwalls faster during short, cloudy days. Let's say, stop the subscription during the late fall/winter time, then restart it as the days get longer in spring. I may just end up keeping it running all year long, depending on the results, and selling more of the excess to PG&E will help somewhat offset the medium-sized $130/month. Net-net over the past 5 years, we've been using more power than generated each year, by an average of 1400 kWh/yr. I'd like to aim for being net zero or generating more for the grid.

1) I know Tesla allows one to stop subscribing and just leave the system on the roof, but should one want to start/stop multiple times in a year, has anyone tried/done that? Guessing it's a simple process either via the app or a phone call.

2) Has anyone started with a subscription, then bought their system after a few months? Was the purchase price any higher than compared to buying it at the beginning, due to the installation expenses that Tesla incurred? How much more was it, if any?

3) Since the purchase price just went down 2 days ago (on 6/19), does anyone think that the subscription price may also be adjusted down soon? If so, what are the chances that Tesla would allow existing subscribers to get the new price or should I wait to see if that happens?

4) Since there's no installation cost to me, this seems like a no-brainer for my case, but maybe I'm missing something. Is this a cock-a-mania idea? =)

Thanks!
 

SMAlset

Well-Known Member
Mar 4, 2017
9,067
9,786
SF Bay Area
I can't imagine they want to play games with turning systems on an off. JMO. That would be like leasing a car and not driving it while away on business trip and not wanting to pay for the lease during that time. Lots of people looking to have solar and PWs installed besides.
 

cwied

Member
Jan 13, 2015
870
621
San Mateo, CA
It's pretty clear that Tesla would not be a fan of this strategy. From the agreement, it looks like they could charge you $2500 to remove the system after you cancel: https://www.tesla.com/sites/default/files/CT_Energy_Subscription_Agreement_08142019.pdf

I don't think they have any obligation to turn the system back on again after you cancel your subscription, and you'd probably have to enter into a new contract, so they have plenty of ways of recouping their costs. I would only get the subscription if you think you want it on all the time.
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Nov 28, 2018
8,864
9,869
Riverside Co. CA
I can't imagine they want to play games with turning systems on an off. JMO. That would be like leasing a car and not driving it while away on business trip and not wanting to pay for the lease during that time. Lots of people looking to have solar and PWs installed besides.

This is my gut feeling as well, that there would be no chance they would let someone only subscribe during part of the year and turn it off and on. I dont think its like a netflix subscription (which is what you are thinking of it as, with a subscription that OP can start and stop).

I think of it more like a car lease with an early termination (panel removal) fee, or not, depending on when you got the subscription.

With that being said, OP, I believe you are likely a pretty tenacious person (given the NGOM issue you were willing to pursue and wait out), but I dont see what you are asking as even possible. It makes no sense from a tesla point of view to allow it, IMO. Let us know if you find out something different.
 

heytae

Member
Mar 9, 2015
147
60
Cupertino, CA
Thanks for your thoughts. Yeah, I don't know yet if there'd be an issue with it or not. Tesla seems to be confident that customers won't want to unsubscribe once they're "hooked" on solar, which I agree. But just to be clear, at most, it'd be turning off the system then resuming it again once a year. Or possibly just keeping it on all year round.

I don't think there's an issue with it technically and contractually speaking, but I'm in the process of getting a current copy of the agreement to verify if there are restrictions. Tesla rep has verbally said that one can stop and restart at whim but we'll see. And I'm under the belief that since their subs are month to month, any term including price changes, can be changed in the future.

Does anyone with a subscription have any insight into this? If anyone's interested in the outcome, I'll post it here. Thanks.
 

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