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Washington State Good To Go Pass - best installation location?

ChadS

Last tank of gas: March 2009
Jul 16, 2009
3,337
2,700
Redmond, WA
I think the best method is to let your senator and representatives know you don't think this solution is acceptable. I emailed mine. If they hear from enough constituents, they will lean on the DOT. My senator agrees this "solution" is bad (he called it "crap") and said he would look in to it.
 

ibdb

Any excuse for a road trip
Apr 29, 2015
435
254
Puyallup, WA
I think the best method is to let your senator and representatives know you don't think this solution is acceptable. I emailed mine. If they hear from enough constituents, they will lean on the DOT. My senator agrees this "solution" is bad (he called it "crap") and said he would look in to it.
I absolutely agree that contacting your legislators is critical to getting their attention towards any kind of solution.

I contacted the 3 legislators from my district, plus one other who is not (Magendanz). Rep. Magendanz responded, suggesting that there ought to be a cloud based way of handling this on the fly using existing technology instead of waiting for something to go wrong and trying to fix it manually after the fact. My own legislators, however, have yet to respond or even acknowledge the message. I have had regular personal interactions with 2 of the 3 legislators who represent me and expect more from them than this. The 3rd, however, has yet to respond personally to any message I've sent during the time since she was elected, so I didn't expect much.
 

ChadS

Last tank of gas: March 2009
Jul 16, 2009
3,337
2,700
Redmond, WA
By the way, HERE is the easy way to find contact information for your senator and representatives in Washington.

I don't contact mine a lot, but this seems really egregious.
 

wdolson

Supporting Member
Jul 24, 2015
7,556
10,098
Clark Co, WA
I could pitch in and contact my reps with our story. It's minor compared to what you guys are dealing with, but little is going to happen until the legislators outside the Seattle area start paying attention.
 

MikeBur

ManualPilot
Dec 8, 2014
1,373
721
Seattle, WA
Thanks all, going to see what gtg say tomorrow and that will guide the tone of my emails whilst still bring pointed about how "crap" the current system is.. ;-)
 

N8DGR8

Member
Jan 14, 2015
148
168
Seattle, WA
Well, I checked my Good to Go account today and it seems as if they are posting photo enforcement in batches. My trips on 9/28 and 9/29 which I had set my Flexpass as HOV just showed up as photo enforced tolls. Looks like my hack with the Flexpass on the back of the front license plate isn't working. I may try to mount the Flexpass in a weather resistant enclosure on the front of my license plate and use duct tape or some other adhesive to see if that will work. The main problem with that will be someone stealing the pass from the front of the car if I leave it visible.

Or I'll go with the solution that Francis posted by putting it on the rear window.

I have my pass in a plastic bag, zip-tied to the crash bar, just behind the nose cone. The 520 bridge has no problem reading my pass. I leave the pass set in HOV mode. There have not been any HOV charges. The only time I use the HOV lanes is with my kids in the car.
 

kashiraja

Member
Jun 30, 2012
17
0
Kirkland, WA
Not to mention the requirement that the flex pass must be visible to traffic officers.


Is this a requirement for sure? I haven't read everything in detail. But, I don't know if the police officers really need to use that to determine whether which mode you are in. When you drive underneath the toll check point and you are in HOV mode then there is a white light that blinks on top of the beam where the antenna is mounted. The police officer only has to look for a car passing by and a white light and if there aren't enough people inside, he can pull them over. I noticed a highway patrol man was parked between the lanes couple of miles north of WA-522 on I-405 just waiting. He was not far enough up near the lane to be able to use a speed gun.

- - - Updated - - -

Unfortunately, I too see a charge for the toll for 9/27 so my solution may not be working too. We drive the 405 with HOV mode quite often so I probably will see 3-5 more charges soon. Darn! :mad:

I will post if I see more charges.

If the PASS ID shows up right away in the "last toll transactions" then it should have read the tag correctly. If not, then the photo enforced fee will eventually show up I assume...?

So if I got your posts correctly. It doesn't detect when in the rear window? I notice the antenna mounted overhead the lane is tilted slightly forward so it is pointing down but slightly toward the front of the car as you are approaching. (Maybe 20 degrees off vertical axis.). If this is the case it would be in the shadow when in the rear window.
 

PhilBa

Active Member
Apr 20, 2013
1,382
68
Seattle
Yes, the flex pass needs to be visible so an officer can determine if you are cheating by operating a single occupancy vehicle in the HOV lane with HOV mode set.
 

Blurry_Eyed

MS Sig #267, MX Sig # 761
Dec 29, 2011
588
307
Well I think I have an interior solution that is acceptable to me, but this will only work for older Model S cars. I have a low VIN # car and the location where my rearview mirror is mounted to the front windshield has a spot where the Flex Pass can be mounted and work. My GTG account just posted the transponder reading for this past Tuesday (the first day I tried the new location) and it did read the pass. Once I get a few more data points confirming the location works, I'll get it mounted properly. I'm just using blue tape for right now.

I'll take some pictures of the location and post it here. Unfortunately, I think newer cars with the Autopilot hardware (Camera mounted in rear view mirror) will not be able to use this position. In those cars I believe the mounting post for the rear view mirror covers up the area where it works.
 

Francis Lau

P-1456
May 27, 2012
518
3
Bellevue, WA
I think the rear window location is working. I had a charge on day 1 but that was when I had the flex pass mounted higher. Since that first day, I had mounted it lower and there has not been charges since day 2 of tolls taking effect. We drive the toll lanes with the HOV setting almost everyday. I will post a pic of locations that works.

- - - Updated - - -

Here is the location that works.

2015-10-11 17.34.25.jpg
 

S4WRXTTCS

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2015
5,464
6,218
Snohomish, WA
I'm not sure I understand why the rear window would be better than the front window. From my understanding a metalized windshield is used for UV protection and to reflect IR. So why wouldn't all the windows on it have the same coating?

I absolutely loathe the 405 good to go system, but I do admit it "attempts" to solve the key problem with them. It's people constantly merging in and out of them. The other issue that it doesn't solve is HOV lanes are supposed to incentivize people to ride share. But, it doesn't really do that when kids count. If kids didn't count it would certainly reduce the amount of Tesla owners with issues with it.
 

Alysashley79

Active Member
Oct 4, 2013
1,201
513
Seattle(ish) WA
I was told that the back window is metalized on the older "classic" cars due to the rear facing seats (since all the cafe could be retro fitted) I've tried this dumb pass in several locations and it doesn't work. Off to Bellevue I go.
 

Francis Lau

P-1456
May 27, 2012
518
3
Bellevue, WA
I was told that the back window is metalized on the older "classic" cars due to the rear facing seats (since all the cafe could be retro fitted) I've tried this dumb pass in several locations and it doesn't work. Off to Bellevue I go.

I have a fairly low VIN - 14xx, and it works for my car. I just drove in the HOV lane a few minutes ago and I saw the white light flash when I drove under the sensors.
 

ibdb

Any excuse for a road trip
Apr 29, 2015
435
254
Puyallup, WA
I received a response from WSDOT's Toll Division that aligns with what others have said with a little new information:

We have a Good To Go! program in place just for vehicles like yours. The program requires you to have your vehicle verified at one of our three walk-in centers, equipped with a license plate pass that is registered with the program, and tested to ensure it is in operational order.

If you travel as a carpool trip, you can avoid the toll by contacting the Customer Service Center within 45 days from your HOV-eligible trip to get the toll refunded to your Good To Go! account. I recommend this option rather than holding a Flex Pass out your window or through your sunroof.

Vehicles with metalized windshields are indeed a challenge area in the toll industry for select vehicles, and we have researched what other toll agencies are doing in this regard. We found that in Washington DC very few vehicles are involved and they have put in place a similar approach to have a driver call for HOV trips to be removed from their account. We plan to operate in this manner on I-405 for an interim period to assess how many drivers are affected. We are also investigating a mobile app or process similar to what Atlanta or Miami does to declare the trips to be made in advance which will be HOV and should not be charged.
 

Blurry_Eyed

MS Sig #267, MX Sig # 761
Dec 29, 2011
588
307
I think I finally found a location and orientation that works. But I have a very low VIN car, so it will only work with cars who have windshields that have a spot to the right of the rear view mirror (Looking at it from the drivers seat) which has no metalic coating.

I'll post a picture when I have a chance. I oriented the pass upside down and in the horizontal position. It has been recording my toll trips properly and also exempting us from fees when we have the pass switched to 'HOV'. I also tried orienting the pass vertically, so the HOV/Toll slider was at the bottom and the pass sensor was at the top of the windshield. That orientation worked when I had the pass in the 'Toll' position, but the sensors would not pick up the pass properly in the HOV mode and was charging me photo fees.
 

rgregg

Member
Oct 8, 2015
16
0
Seattle, WA
I've had my switchable pass in the trunk the last couple of days as I was trying to figure out a good place to install it still. Logged into my account today and it was read properly every time I went over the bridge (4 trips so far). I have a brand new Model S, so I don't know if they changed the back windshield or not, but it definitely seems to be working. Even buried in my bag in the trunk, the system had no problem reading my tag (and since I don't have a license plate yet, that's the only way it would pick up my account).

That isn't a convenient place to switch the pass if you wanted to use the HOT lanes as car pool, but at least it saves the extra charge they tack on for "pay by plate".
 

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