CarCharging Implements kWh Pricing in Pennsylvania

NOV 14 2014 BY MARK KANE 24

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The Public Utility Commission of the State of Pennsylvania approved owners and operators of EV charging stations to implement kilowatt hour (“kWh”) pricing within the state.

Thanks to this permit, CarCharging can implement its kWh pricing in Pennsylvania, and that’s what it did by announcing Blink Level 2 access from $0.39/kWh to $0.49/kWh depending on status Member/Guest instead of $0.04/min to $0.06/min.

This does not apply to DC fast chargers, which for some reason have kWh pricing only on the West Coast.

Michael D. Farkas, CarCharging’s Founder and Chief Executive Officer stated:

“We applaud the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission for their decision to permit per kWh pricing given that it is both practical and appropriate. Pricing by kilowatt hour is the fairest, and most attractive, method by which consumers can charge their cars, as it directly ties with the electricity consumed. We believe states which accept this methodology are leading the way in supporting cleaner, more environmentally-friendly transportation alternatives for decades to come.”

In Pennsylvania, CarCharging operates more than 140 charging stations including several on the PA turnpike and in major cities such as Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.

Here is the full list of states and prices:

What is the fee to charge at a Blink Level 2 station?

StateBlink MemberĀ Blink Guest
District of Columbia$0.45/kWh$0.55/kWh
New York$0.49/kWh$0.59/kWh
All Other States$0.04/min$0.06/min

What is the fee to charge at a Blink DC Fast Charger?

StateMember RatesGuest Rates
All Other States$6.99/session$9.99/session

Categories: Charging


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24 Comments on "CarCharging Implements kWh Pricing in Pennsylvania"

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Well, since I have a Volt these prices seem kind of high at over $5 per gallon equivalent. Since I’ve never found a free charger around here I only charge at home.

Same here.

My 2013 is 10 months old, about 9000 miles total. Almost 7000 electric miles all from my garage.

$.50/kwh for a level 2 is an outrage. 10 cents per for a DCFC might be justified if you consider the cost of the charger. At these prices I too would only charge at home.

I think that’s the point. At least some public chargers should be reserved for people who *need* them. Higher prices accomplish that, thus reducing range anxiety. Those in need will gladly pay $.50/kwh when their alternative is being stranded. But the fee should also be based on time to discourage squatters.

Equipment and property costs money, and since to have enough chargers to be useful they must be usually free, then the cost is amortised over relatively few charging hours.

If it is not paid for by subsidy, then it is going to cost at this sort of level.

When it costs this sort of level, your business plan is wrong. It’s total normal for new businesses not to make any profit in the first years, if you haven’t included this in your calculations, your business is very likely designed to be a quick one shot profit and run away scam.

How many businesses have you started using this model? How many were successful? I ask, since it sounds like a recipe for failure.

Its cheaper to burn gas….

I have only used public chargers for 250 miles out of 15,000 miles on my EV. The rest of my miles are powered by electricity from my home. I am willing to pay these prices if the station is always working and available when I NEED it. I have a balance ready and waiting on Blink, ChargePoint, and SemaCharge, just in case I need it sometime. It’s like insurance against getting stranded when I have to take an last minute trip beyond my single charge range.

Only when you ignore all the environmental and health consequences of burning gas…

At least he didn’t say “At that price, it’s better to burn gas”.

Yikes, if you consider that an EV does ~3miles/kWh, this price is equivalent to a car that does 20mpg at 3$/gallon.
Emergency use only!

Except at “emergency use”, I’m surely getting 5 mi/kwh since I’m driving slow and not braking. Heck I get 5 usually so in an emergency I might get 6-7.

So using 6 is equivalent to 40 mpg. Since this would presumably be a less than monthly event and for just a few miles, $.50 a kwh doesn’t sound too bad.

I stopped for a free charge yesterday just because it was so cold and I wanted a drink anyway. Stayed for about 10 min for 1 kwh. I paid more than $.50 for the drink.

This particular charger is 5 miles from my house right at the junction of interstates. So I would never need more than 1 kwh. $.50 on an semiannual basis is pretty good to get 5 more miles in range.

That’s the whole idea. Give an EV owner 10 cents worth of “free” electricity and they will shop in your store/mall. You don’t need to charge for the electricity because the shop owners will make profit on something else. Is this not the idea behind convenience stores like 7-11?

The words in the blink ad in the article is wrong. It should say:


And Blink is the correct word for the company. I blinked several times in astonishment after seeing those prices.

I achieved 80% electric miles on Volt just charging at home. No change for me at those prices.

I wouldn’t mind paying that much if it was from a clean source.

U kiddin’ me? You can get your own windmill and produce electricity for a quarter of that price.

I’ve actually thought about how the charging would work and be priced in the future. There is no doubt that not everyone can charge an EV at home. Where I live about half of us lives in apartments. The other half in houses.

I guesstimate a 20% increase in price per kWh compared to at home. That would be acceptable from a customer’s point of view. But then the chargers has to be really fast (like 150 kW and upwards) to be able to make some money from it. Or else there can’t be enough cars during a day that pay for a single charger station.

It is a “rip off”. But I think it is a good thing since Battery car owners keep complaining about other people “hogging” those L2 stations. With this kind of prices, those battery car owners can have them all to themselves.

If they don’t use them, then eventually those L2 chargers will go ahead and battery car owners will complain that there aren’t enough of those L2 stations.

So, the only possbile model is DCFC only and L2 only at certain commercial locations to encourage patron usage by paying for them through shopping.

Most people forget fuel stations don’t make money off of selling fuel. Their profit is in beer and cigarettes. I agree that the only way for charging to be sold in a way that makes sense is if the provider has another source of income to defray the cost of infrastructure. Businesses which expect customers to remain for an hour or longer — restaurants, shopping malls, movie theaters, etc..

Charging a reasonable fee makes sense, but this business model only works if people are willing to pay the fee. People are used to free or cheap rates to charge at public sites.

When Blink raised their rates on L2’s by 140% (in Tennessee) back in September, my takeaway was that they only want EV users to use them when it is absolutely necessary. The DCQC rates aren’t as bad, especially considering the speed of the charge. Now, if only they can keep their equipment operational, and provide more coverage.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

Charging for charging’s sake is not a business model. Charging as an attractor for folks to come by your business and stay awhile, thus increasing the chance that they buy something that offsets the (minimal) cost of charging, that’s closer to the mark.

Seems to me ChargePoint has the right idea, providing management and billing services to customer-owned equipment and letting them set whatever charges they want (or none at all, or membership in an affiliate group with its own price schedule).