What to know about adding an EV charger to your home
Adding a large electric load to your house, such as a level 2 EV charger, heat pump, heat pump water heater, or induction range may require upgrades to the electric service (your circuit breaker box) and / or the Washington Electric Co-Op transformer serving your house, at your own cost. Adding large electric loads without taking account of the capacity of the existing transformer may lead to emergency outages, and additional cost to the member causing the outage.
Supply chain delays have impacted transformer shipments, which may affect members’ ability and timing to add new large electric loads to their homes. Call WEC at 802-224-2329 or toll free at 1-800-932-5245 if you are considering adding an electric vehicle or other large electric load to your home. WEC can assess your current transformer load and provide guidance on next steps.
Why do we need to shift power?
WEC gets 100% of its power from renewable sources, a source of pride for our co-op members. Recent advancements in communication technology means the co-op can reduce costs by shifting energy use to get the most benefits out of renewable energy, but we need your help!
When peak demand is high it causes increased operational costs and that can impact electricity rates. Most electricity is used when we get home and settle into our evening routines (dinner, laundry, TV, etc.).
The solution: shift the times that grid-enabled devices in WEC homes use energy. Technologies like electric vehicles (EVs) can be enabled to flex their usage patterns to times when utility costs are lowest and powered by the cleanest sources. If we can shift energy use to a different time of the day, we can keep rates lower for everyone.
What is Project PowerShift?
- An opportunity to test a new, exciting technology that will help the co-op reduce costs and maintain our 100% renewable status
- Participating members can currently receive a Level 2 EV Charger that will charge your car at the most energy efficient times
- When a peak energy demand event is predicted, a signal is sent to your grid-enabled device or EV charger that will optimize what time of day it uses energy. These devices will help avoid using energy during the peak times.
- Your EV charger will be able to charge your battery when operational costs are lower and the electric grid is powered by cleaner sources.
- Watch the video for a helpful explanation
What are EV Chargers?EV Chargers are also known as EVSEs or Electric Vehicle (EV) charging stations, electric recharging points or just charging points. The Level 2 chargers that are that are enrolled in Powershift will use energy when it's less expensive, shifting usage away from peak energy times.
What to expect when you participate
Your EV charger will default to charge at specific times, though you will be able to override this setting on a case-by-case basis if necessary.
Help us harness the power of grid-enabled devices that keep energy costs lower for all WEC members.
Want to learn more? Read our Frequently asked questions.
Complete this form to learn more
Devices are available on a first come, first served basis. Space is limited. Fill out this form to hold your spot.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a PowerShift event?
Participants have their EV chargers set up to flex how energy is used during a PowerShift event. During a PowerShift event, WEC will enable your electric vehicle charger to use energy when utility costs are lowest and powered by the cleanest energy sources, and not draw from dirtier sources when energy demand is at its peak. Be part of a 21st century electric grid, working with your member-owned co-op to lower costs for all members and push down our peak demands together by sharing the “storage” capacity available in level 2 chargers.
How does it work?
Your EV charger will be on a daily schedule that shifts away from peak energy demand hours each day. Your EV charger will be throttled down during this time and charge your battery when costs are lowest. You will still be able to override your EV charging time if need be.
Do energy peaks occur daily or does it only happen once in a while?
Energy peaks occur daily, but the costly ones are monthly and annually. Because forecasting these peaks is difficult, EV chargers will default to charge between 10PM and 3PM the next day (a daily setting) to avoid peak times.
How do I get an ESVE installed and what will it cost?
WEC is providing the Level 2 charger to participating members and members are responsible for the cost of installation. Chargers must be installed by licensed electrician and the installation must meet code requirements. Installation is estimated to be around $250 - $800 depending on the complexity of the installation and any code deficiencies which must also be remedied.
I already have an EV charger at my home, can I participate?
Yes. If you have a qualified Level 2 charger at your home, you can connect to the pilot program. Call Efficiency Vermont to find out if your charger qualifies.
Are EV chargers eligible?
At this time eligible EV chargers must be ChargePoint Wi-Fi enabled products.
Does PowerShift shift energy costs from one member to another?
No. PowerShift is intended to keep members utility usage and bills the same. If successful, WEC is expected to save operational costs from this effort. These operational costs will help reduce rates for all members.