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Tesla inconsistency and timelines for PTO...

brian.c

Member
Apr 7, 2021
104
57
Rocklin, ca
Getting a bit frustrated at this point. So long story short we signed up early March for solar only. The entire process has been slow, drawn out, and zero communication. I had been discussing with a neighbor about me adding more solar, he then decided to order, also through Tesla. His order was placed about 1.5 months after mine. His process seemed to go very smooth, and actually had an install date scheduled before mine. He ended up changing the date for a week after my install happened. So I am already thinking, wow, how did your process go so smooth. My inspection happened last Monday, 10 days ago, passed, no issues. Next day paid our bill, since then nothing has happened. Get a text from my neighbor today, "I just got PTO from PG&E today!". Said he had inspection yesterday, got docs from PGE today, signed, and received PTO. So now I am wondering whats going on with my account, call in... Still, nothing has been submitted, says they were waiting on docs which came in on Tues (25th), then tells me its another 7-10 days for them to gather their paperwork to submit to PG&E, and expect at least 45 days for PG&E to review. I am at a loss for words on this whole process. How 2 jobs, 2 doors away, can be so different.
 

aesculus

Still Trying to Figure This All Out
May 31, 2015
4,471
2,539
Northern California
I am at a loss for words on this whole process. How 2 jobs, 2 doors away, can be so different.
I had the exact same experience south east of you about 30 miles. My neighbor got theirs months before mine and mine was installed before. I know mine had errors because I talked to PG&E multiple times to figure out what went wrong.

My guess is that we had the same person. :-(
 

wjgjr

Active Member
May 11, 2020
1,254
998
Silver Spring, MD
A lot of what you describe seems, unfortunately, to be fairly typical for Tesla. In particular, the lack of communication is a big issue. As to the rest, it may be luck of the draw with which advisor and other employees happen to be assigned to your account.

You do say something about "adding more solar" - do you have an existing system? I wonder if this caused Tesla some confusion or errors in submitting proper paperwork to the utility. Also, did you have any changes in your design during the process? If your neighbor's install did not change but yours did, that could explain it. Tesla seems to be good about getting initial permits filed but can be slow with making updates, where needed. Of course, this is just speculation, and the real issue is the lack of communication you note, as better communication could let you know where there are legitimate issues causing a delay, or, at the very least, not have you worrying that your paperwork is lost in the system.
 

brian.c

Member
Apr 7, 2021
104
57
Rocklin, ca
I had the exact same experience south east of you about 30 miles. My neighbor got theirs months before mine and mine was installed before. I know mine had errors because I talked to PG&E multiple times to figure out what went wrong.

My guess is that we had the same person. :-(
Ugh, I would be fine if they just submitted the paperwork. When I see posts that took months to even submit, that is unacceptable. If I was not required to pay, then no big deal. Up to this point I have been tolerant of the slow process, but once I paid my tolerance dropped. I was also annoyed that the Tesla rep kept telling me that its impossible to get PTO in such a short time, yet I see many others getting PTO in a few days after inspection. My neighbor clearly got PTO in a day.
 

brian.c

Member
Apr 7, 2021
104
57
Rocklin, ca
A lot of what you describe seems, unfortunately, to be fairly typical for Tesla. In particular, the lack of communication is a big issue. As to the rest, it may be luck of the draw with which advisor and other employees happen to be assigned to your account.

You do say something about "adding more solar" - do you have an existing system? I wonder if this caused Tesla some confusion or errors in submitting proper paperwork to the utility. Also, did you have any changes in your design during the process? If your neighbor's install did not change but yours did, that could explain it. Tesla seems to be good about getting initial permits filed but can be slow with making updates, where needed. Of course, this is just speculation, and the real issue is the lack of communication you note, as better communication could let you know where there are legitimate issues causing a delay, or, at the very least, not have you worrying that your paperwork is lost in the system.
I wonder about the adding extra solar, because yes we did add a second system. There also were changes at install, that slowed the inspection because they had to resubmit to the building department. From my talking with Tesla, they never submit anything to PG&E until the project is completed so I would assume, once the inspection was signed off, its ready to submit to PG&E. When you call in, they give no reason, can't tell you what they are waiting on, just simply say its being worked on.
 

brian.c

Member
Apr 7, 2021
104
57
Rocklin, ca
Today was informed Tesla is backlogged 90+ days on PTO submissions. After multiple calls, multiple times being told it would be submitted in 7-10 days, the truth comes out. Not only that but says PG&E is also backlogged another 45 days. So he claims they are minimum 135 days for PTO.

So now there is a concern we are not approved prior to Nem 3... So if you are looking at solar with Tesla, I would highly suggest looking elsewhere until they get this under control. I am going to keep calling back over the next week if nothing happens, after that we will dispute the payment with credit card company. They have no concern for their customers, and the rep was not even apologetic at all. He simply said, he was notified by higher ups, that is the way it is.
 

SaveOurPlanet

Member
Jan 6, 2018
242
147
San Francisco
I understand your frustration, though I passed city inspection 2 days after solar roof install completion, Tesla had to resubmit an after-the-fact review request to the city due to changing of Delta inverter to Tesla inverter. That is a minor change so it is just a paper review by the city and revised permit. PG&E PTO application was not submitted until a new reviewed permit was approved by the city. I called PG&E every other day checking on status. Tesla finally got everything together and application was submitted roughly a month after installation, but my install was clean and fast with no complications. PG&E told me it would be approved within 5 business days unless there are issues with the documents submitted, PTO was approved in 3 days after submission. Hard to believe there would be a backlog with PG&E.
 

aesculus

Still Trying to Figure This All Out
May 31, 2015
4,471
2,539
Northern California
Today was informed Tesla is backlogged 90+ days on PTO submissions. After multiple calls, multiple times being told it would be submitted in 7-10 days, the truth comes out. Not only that but says PG&E is also backlogged another 45 days. So he claims they are minimum 135 days for PTO.
I am pretty sure nothing prevents you from submitting the PTO yourself. You will need Tesla to give you the Single Line Diagram (they may have already), and good luck getting the $150 application fee costs back from Tesla. I did one for a solar install a contractor actually did and even started the application for.

You can create an account on PG&E NEMS website and submit the PTO all online. Then you can test the validity of the 45 day delay of PG&E. At least you will eliminate Teslas time and maybe some errors too.
 
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jboy210

Supporting Member
Dec 2, 2016
5,203
3,238
Northern California
You might call PG&E and see what is going on. When we paid our bill after passing inspection Tesla sent the application for PTO to PG&E within minutes based on when we received confirmation/welcome email from PG&E. Then for 5+ week PG&E and Tesla ended sending additional paperwork back and forth over various issues. Each time ate up a week or two. In the end, we got PTO 5-6 weeks after passing the final inspection. Both PG&E and Tesla took a while to answer our questions about the status, but both did.
 
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Gizmo35

Member
Aug 4, 2019
149
153
San Diego, CA
I feel the pain. I think I am going to call tesla after the holiday weekend and ask them to send. Me everything I need to submit PTO myself. At this point, it would be cheaper to eat the application cost rather than continue to pay my electricity bill every month. Insp has been complete since April 13th. No PTO application submitted to date. I would be a little more tolerant with the wait if I wasnt required to pay right after inspection, which I did in cash.
 
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brian.c

Member
Apr 7, 2021
104
57
Rocklin, ca
You might call PG&E and see what is going on. When we paid our bill after passing inspection Tesla sent the application for PTO to PG&E within minutes based on when we received confirmation/welcome email from PG&E. Then for 5+ week PG&E and Tesla ended sending additional paperwork back and forth over various issues. Each time ate up a week or two. In the end, we got PTO 5-6 weeks after passing the final inspection. Both PG&E and Tesla took a while to answer our questions about the status, but both did.
Tesla told me on multiple calls, they have not submitted. First 2 calls said would be submitted within a week or two, third call they said 90 days is the new timeline. This just for submitting the paperwork.
 

brian.c

Member
Apr 7, 2021
104
57
Rocklin, ca
I feel the pain. I think I am going to call tesla after the holiday weekend and ask them to send. Me everything I need to submit PTO myself. At this point, it would be cheaper to eat the application cost rather than continue to pay my electricity bill every month. Insp has been complete since April 13th. No PTO application submitted to date. I would be a little more tolerant with the wait if I wasnt required to pay right after inspection, which I did in cash.
This is also my plan, will be calling next week to try and get any paperwork needed to submit. The $150 fee is less then one month electricity in the summer time. The website says 1-6 weeks for permission to operate, so if I am unable to get done by then, I think the only other options would be to start filing a complaint with the state contractors board. Its fine if it takes them 3 months to file, if I have not paid.

These kinds of tactics is what will kill the company, I have been a big supporter, convinced 2 people to go solar with them. I will no longer support or refer anyone, for car or solar. Cybertruck was also pretty high on our list for our next ev, not anymore.
 
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tconvert

Member
Mar 21, 2021
73
139
SF Bay Area
I am in a similar boat. Had added solar + my first powerwalls added in March ( to some existing solar, already have the right meter type). Inspection had a glitch (they had old diagram) but was passed within 2 weeks. I paid Tesla in full a very large sum April 9th ish after inspection was approved by city. I keep checking with PGE and they say nothing submitted. I have been asking the project manager over and over, and every Friday i get automated messages saying they are working on it. They still have not submitted to PG&E the interconnect agreement. I am losing many hundreds of dollars every month until I can leave it fully on. Powerwalls at least they left on. Tested it several times and works fine, powerwalls and added solar, power even went out once. There can't be much of an excuse for simple form filing at this point to give me what I paid for. Maybe they can't hire fast enough I guess.
 

tconvert

Member
Mar 21, 2021
73
139
SF Bay Area
I got an unprompted messaging today explaining heavy demand driving the delays. They expect to move it along next couple of weeks. It was nice to hear something, and I can sympathize with demamd/workload being the issue. Probably a lot folks scared by CA fires and PGE constantly cutting power… that they bought solar/powerwalls like I did.
 
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holeydonut

Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
1,866
1,253
East Bay NorCal
I got an unprompted messaging today explaining heavy demand driving the delays. They expect to move it along next couple of weeks. It was nice to hear something, and I can sympathize with demamd/workload being the issue. Probably a lot folks scared by CA fires and PGE constantly cutting power… that they bought solar/powerwalls like I did.


Yeah, for me... Sunrun had their executive in charge of policy on the news to publicly throw shade at PG&E for relentless delays granting PTO during 2020. PG&E responded by slowing down PTO even further since there is no fine or penalty for PG&E failing to deliver PTO requests in a timely manner. Just remember, things can always go worse than what you're already experienced when PG&E is involved. Of course the absolute worst would be if PG&E blows up your house and subsequently sets your corpse on fire.
 

aesculus

Still Trying to Figure This All Out
May 31, 2015
4,471
2,539
Northern California
PG&E responded by slowing down PTO even further since there is no fine or penalty for PG&E failing to deliver PTO requests in a timely manner.
One PG&E solar employee told me they have to respond to requests within 30 days. I don't know if that was a goal or a PUC requirement.

And if they respond that they need additional information, the 30 day clock restarts when the new information is returned. So you can easily see how between Tesla and PG&E, time can build very rapidly if they both delay.
 

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