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Sam Villella over 4 years ago

Xcel Energy could be doing so much more to increase proliferation of EV's and to control the manor in which their load is added to the grid. The public expects them to be the leader in this task and to be an expert on EV's.

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steven bradbury over 4 years ago

I found that getting the EV meter installed from Xcel was not particularly easy, partly my issue with capacity limitations on my house panel, but Xcel also didn't seem to have any idea what I was asking for. It took many calls and forms filled out before I found someone to help me.

The bill is also ridiculously complex to read, I opted in to the wind power program which just adds another level of complexity onto the bill.

I think they could be doing a better job, make it easier to participate in this program and make the bill easier to read.

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Mark Hanson over 4 years ago

Xcel's current requirement to have a separate meter and service line for the EV TOU rate is overburdensome. With the much higher upfront cost and the monthly charge for the meter, there is little incentive, perhaps even a disincentive to participate.

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Derek Burns over 4 years ago

The fact Xcel requires a separate meter and service line for their EV TOU rate makes it a non-starter. This requirement is unnecessarily expensive when the same goal could be accomplished with a simple sub-meter system.

Please encourage Xcel to remove the separate meter and line requirement. Participation in this program would increase significantly if that were to happen.

Thank you

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Joel Acker over 4 years ago

I agree with the previous commenters about the disincentive that Xcel is creating by requiring a separate meter & service line. This requirement is what has prevented both myself & my parents from taking advantage of Xcel's EV rate plan for our EVs. The requirements for a separate meter & service line mean that it would cost more to participate in this program.

Other local utilities, such as Dakota Electric, go the route of subtractive metering for their EV rate plan. They seem to have a higher adoption rate among EV owners. Perhaps the PUC could study what they have done & recommend that other utilities imitate their lead. Great Rivier Energy has also done a better job with EV education & encouragement to their member cooperatives. It might be worth studying their activities as well as a good example of how to promote EV rate plans.

EV rate plans should be a win-win. The utility wins by shifting demand to the overnight hours. The ratepayer wins by reducing the cost of charging their EV. Unfortunately, Xcel has created structured their EV rate plans in such a way that they are a lose-lose proposition. Xcel loses by not shifting more demand to the overnight hours when the wind is blowing the strongest to generate clean electricty and the EV owner loses by not being able to save money on the costs of charging their EV.

Based on talking with other EV owners, I would guess that Xcel would probably have at least 5 times the number of participants in their EV rate plan if it used subtractive metering instead of requiring a separate meter.

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Justin Dritz over 4 years ago

A sub metering solution for EV would be helpful. I have a separate 200 amp service to my garage for some hobby work, I would still need to a separate meter for the EV or go entirely to TOD. There is little incentive to so with the peak penalty rate that I would occasionally incur.

Several times I've called for clarification on various plans, the reps seems clueless as to how EVs play into the picture. Before I got my first PHEV and had called about possible rates, they were ill prepared to discuss future use and could only evaluate my current consumption, even though I could tell them almost exactly how much additional Kwhrs I was going to consume via charging. I'm very interested in ensuring I can charge off peak for the benefit of the system and do so when able, but the programs from Xcel leave little reason to do so for both financial and ease-of-use reasons..

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Tom Ezdon over 4 years ago

The requirement for a separate meter their EV time of use rate makes it cost prohibitive. This requirement is unnecessarily expensive when the same goal could be accomplished with a simple sub-meter system.

Please encourage Xcel to remove the separate meter and line requirement as well as to be more informed so that when we call or want to participate, they know what the program is.

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James Ehrler over 4 years ago

I will add my voice to those saying that the separate meter makes this a very unattractive tariff.

As I said when this first became obvious as part of Xcel's plan, with the high load EV’s put on the system it is in Xcel’s interest to manage that load effectively and to make it in the consumer’s interest to help. By mandating that the consumer install a second meter socket (and panel?) next to the current socket you are creating a financial disincentive to spread the load PLUS adding inconvenience. The rate savings you offer as an incentive could have a payback that would extend to longer than the lease or ownership of the car! Unlike a water heater or air conditioning unit, vehicles are not locked into a given location for their life. So the payback has to be within a reasonable period of time given car ownership patterns among EV users.

To rescue this situation the PUC and Xcel should look to mitigate/offset the cost to the consumer for the second meter, whether by allowing sub metering, lowering requirements, providing rebates, or doing the work themselves.

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Tom Thies over 4 years ago

I called a few months ago about installing a separate meter for reduced rate EV charging. Finally spoke with someone in your meter dept. who could answer my questions. Yes, I already have a 50 Amp plug in my garage with a 240 Volt charger. The cost for my electrician to install the wiring for your separate meter and fuse box, the additional monthly fee and the much higher rate to charge my car during peaks times a few times per month did not make financial sense. I already pay extra for the Windsource Program. Sounds like Dakota Electric has a good off-peak EV rate. I would consider signing up for this program if you used sub-metering.

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Joe Hays over 4 years ago

I agree with all the previous comments, especially concerning the hassle of installation, the extra costs, the lack of knowledge within Xcel on their various programs, the length of time to get the meter installed and requirement for an extra meter (and charge) for this service.

I am one of the Xcel customers that opted NOT to sign up for their Electric Vehicle Rate Plan program because of the extra charges and fees. Instead I opted for the whole house Time Of Day meter which did not entail an additional fee for the installation of the meter. This program replaced my current meter with a new TOD meter and provides incentives to use more electricity between 9pm-9am than between 9am-9pm. The electricity rates are 8.5 times higher between 9am-9pm then they are between 9pm-9am. This is working for us, but I know it will not work for many households.

The installation process was overly burdensome and confusing, for both myself and the Xcel people I spoke with during the process. It took a few different phone calls before I was able to find someone that when about the programs and was able to assist. It took over one month to finally get my meter installed. On top of this, the payback period is longer than I will own my current electric car, so financially, this was a loss instead of an incentive to sign up for the program. From talking with other owners and the people at Xcel, my experience has been the same for the TOD program as those that use the Electric Vehicle Rate Plan.

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John Dunlop over 4 years ago

The high cost of installing a parallel meter makes the Xcel EV rate infeasible.

On the other hand, Xcel’s Time of Use rates can be a great option for EV owners. Electricity cost for off-peak periods is only 3 ¢/kW.h, though on-peak periods range from 16.5 ¢/kW.h (winter) to 20 ¢/kW.h (summer). The off-peak period is from 9 p.m. to 9 a.m. daily, as well as during every weekend day and the six major holidays. We have been the TOU rates (and charging our EV only during off-peak periods) for the past six months, and our electric bill is 27% less than it would have been under the Xcel standard rates.

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Chris Meier over 4 years ago

I agree with many of the commenters above. I am not so concerned with the specific technical implementation, I think the main issue is unreasonable cost to us for a benefit to Xcel. TOD is a non starter, I have an electric range/oven and air conditioner and am on saver switch. I will not wait until 9pm to start making a dinner in the oven for Xcel's benefit. What is my incentive to join the EV rate, pay thousands so that I don't increase Xcel's afternoon load when I return from work or errands? I would save just a dime or a quarter per day. On savers switch I save by allowing Xcel to throttle my A/C. Why isn't there a similar program where Xcel can reduce or increase my EV charge rate to better balance demand to supply? I am aware that others are working on this technology, and not just for EV; electric water heating for example. Please form an EV panel from the commenters listed here to advise on replacement programs or adjustments to existing programs.

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Chris Meier over 4 years ago

The EV schedule customer charge per month of $5 seems high, when only $5 of electricity is purchased per month at the $0.033 rate. Effective rate to switch to EV schedule is then 6.6c per kwh, hardly a bargain after laying out thousands to switch. Again, where is the incentive for EV owner/customer to help out Xcel?

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