Results From Workplace Charging Survey

NOV 18 2014 BY GRANT GERKE 32

Charging Infrastructure: Do You Have a Workplace Charging Station?

A new workplace charging survey points to employee satisfaction and new charging stations being added by employers despite expired financial incentives.

Looks like more employers around the U.S. are providing access to electric charging stations at workplaces and, specifically, via the workplace charging challenge led by the Department of Energy (DoE). At the Workplace Charging Challenge Summit on Tuesday, the vehicle technologies group inside the DoE released results from its recent survey of 117 workplace charging partners during the plenary session. The DoE conducted this survey in August 2014

The workplace charging partners are U.S. companies that have signed on to the DoE led effort, called EV Workplace Charging Challenge, which promotes the installation of electric vehicle charging stations or access to 120V outlets in parking garages and lots.

Workplace Charging Makes EVs More Suitable for All

Workplace Charging Makes EVs More Suitable for All

At today’s charging summit in Washington D.C., the DoE announced that there are 150 workplace charging partners, up from approximately 50 partners at this time last year, and there are more than 300 work sites with charging stations in 40 states.

“Workplace partners are working to promote this (charging) and make this access available to 600,000 plus employees with access at their worksite. That’s a huge footprint of people pulling in to work and being able to plug-in,” says Sarah Olexsak, workplace charging coordinator at the DoE.

This survey examines early experiences at the workplace and found that “81 workplaces reported an average of 10 kWH of electricity per charging station per day,” says Olexsak. This is from 81 work sites only, as 40 percent of the respondent partners were able to tell us (DoE) of their electricity utilization.” Olexsak adds the DoE will focus on working with partners to track their electricity better.

Are employees taking advantage of charging at work? Olexsak says, “90 percent of our respondents to this survey say these existing charging stations being fully utilized, at least, five days a week.” Out of the 117 charging partners in August, this survey had 80 percent response rate.

The workplace charging program is in year two and financial incentives at a federal level began to expire in 2014. So did that affect growth of charging installations in 2014?

“Prior to May 2013, 20 percent of employers took advantage of financial incentives. In the past year, it dropped to four percent. So even though of number of locations are up and there’s an expansion happening,” Olexsak adds.

Other highlights include:

● 80 percent of employers do not charge a fee to electric vehicle drivers, while fifteen percent charge a fee based on electricity usage and five percent pay a fixed fee.
● 60 percent of the DoE’s current workplace partners are helping other businesses with questions and challenges related to charging.
● Electric vehicle drivers are quite satisfied with charging stations being available at the workplace and have communicated their satisfaction to their employers.

To read more results of the study, visit http://1.usa.gov/1uLAfnm

Categories: Charging

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32 Comments on "Results From Workplace Charging Survey"

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Phr3d

Put 240V’s everywhere a customer can park.

Wonder if you can write off the electricity usage a cost of business..

Scott Franco

I agree. We don’t have a charger “because it costs too much”, but that is certianly because they went to chargepoint or somesuch and got an outrageous quote. Most employers who do provide this provide it free (%80 according to the article). So put in a 220v outlet or two, a fraction of the cost of a chargepoint type charger (which needs network communication and other support). Then the costs become much more reasonable.

220v portable chargers are widely available now, and cheap. There is no reason other than trying to make money off charging to put in a full installation. Even in that case a 220v only would save enough money that the need to “make back installation costs” would not exist.

Dan

The amount of money it costs to trench wiring to a surface-lot EVSE is substantial, on the order of $9000 per charger. And unless your company has the most ridiculously overbuilt parking lot lamps of all time, you can’t just piggyback them on lot lamps; you have to meet code.

Goaterguy

Sadly on this “sue happy” society we live in, if a customer or a customer’s kid is shocked by sticking a paper clip in a 220V outlet, the owner will be liable. The J1772 plug avoids being hot all the time but it cost money. Sorry but I don’t see this happening soon.

Spec9

120V is enough. I’d rather have 2xn 120v than n 240V outlets.

Alan Campbell

Aside from home charging, workplace charging is the second most important charging option.

Not only does it allow an EV owner to work at a range up to and over 80% of their vehicle max range, it essentially extends the range of the plug-in vehicle by the one way commute range.

This is a great way to maximize the range of an EV.

Sublime

Workplace charging or not, I wouldn’t recommend anyone get a BEV unless it can do a round-trip commute. What happens when the workplace EVSE is down? What happens when you get to work and there’s an emergency or you forgot something and it would be best to turn around immediately?

Cavaron

Public fast charging is the answer to these one or two occasions a year… but what if a crazy scientist releases a Zombi-virus AND lithium eating bacteria? Man, you would be really screwd with an EV then, better don’t buy one…

Sublime

I have a LEAF, because I can do a round trip commute well within it’s range. Public fast charging isn’t readily available outside a couple pockets around the country.
If you buy an EV, relying on workplace charging, you’re setting yourself up for disappointed and stress IMO. Get a Volt or i3 REX.

James B.

Or a Ford Fusion Energi, like I did…

Robert Weekley
Sublime, what if you get to work and have to go home and are out of gas and realize you forgot your wallet after you fill up at the gas station? Do you Wait for police or Drive away and get nailed later? What if the Gas station sign reads $000 – meaning – they have no Gas? What if they just got robbed and the station is all taped off – Police – do not enter? What if…. Etc.??? There are always – what if’s! What if the traffic lights aren’t all green when you leave home – do you stay home? So – because you think you might not have a solution, to a some times emergency – you should stay on a Gas or Diesel Powered car in case you forget something at home and need it at a morning meeting? That’s what they invented Planning and Checklist for – if its important, that is! On the other hand, what if – you don’t have a house, but rather a Condo or Apartment? Then – You are saying – don’t buy an EV, but Workplace Charging access says – now you can buy an EV, using Work… Read more »
Thomas J. Thias
110V AC Outlets! North Of 1.5 Billion 110V AC Outlets In North America. ALL EVs USE THESE To Refuel/Charge! Standard 9 hours in the employee, executive or corporate parking lot effectively doubles the all Electric Range of the Chevy Volt Extended Range EV and Stunning Cadillac ELR Extended Range Electric Luxury Coupe to 65 to 90 miles daily depending on temperature, terrain and technique. Same range extending, 110V AC Outlet Workplace Charging/Refueling perk goes for ALL Electric Fueled Vehicles at more then 23 OEM offerings available to purchase or lease now. ALL EVs Draw 12a or less on the 110V AC Outlet. The GM Voltec Platforms default to 8a or less but owner can opt in up to 12a per charge. Plug in an upscale coffee maker, space heater or shop fan, 12a draw is standard use for most single use 110V AC Outlets. (Have an electrician check socket and circuit long term demand, of course) So, an additional 30-55 All Electric mile gain per day, for bout a buck a day, as a recognized employee perk, in lieu of the heavy traditional tax payer supported car pooling fed programs is an added benefit in the avoidance of gasoline use.… Read more »
James B.

Or the Ford Fusion Energi… 20 miles on electric, 600+ miles with added gas engine.

I charge on 110 in under 5 hours, about 2 on 240.

In summer I get form home and to home, with workplace charging, on electric. Winter not so much. After 1.5 years, I’m still over 90% electric.

DaveMart
Solar arrays over parking lots at work in most of the US are the most efficient way possible of charging BEVs and PHEVs. That is because you are not fooling around transforming the power back and forth to send it to the grid, but putting it much more directly into the battery. It is part of the reason why I object to the wholly inaccurate claims of some that they are running their car on solar power when they are doing no such thing, but providing power to the grid when they have it available from a home solar array, and charging their cars at night from the grid not their solar arrays. That loose terminology obscures the advantages of putting the solar array in the best place for the purpose, which is where the car is parked when the sun is shining. In addition covering the parking lots reduces heat hitting the car in the summer, which of course cuts down the need for cooling it down again using power, and also gives the batteries a far easier time of it as they don’t get too hot. Of course, it is also a more efficient use of land, as… Read more »
Mark Hovis
“It is part of the reason why I object to the wholly inaccurate claims of some that they are running their car on solar power when they are doing no such thing, but providing power to the grid when they have it available from a home solar array, and charging their cars at night from the grid not their solar arrays.” I agree wholeheartedly with your assessment of solar parking and I have no problem correcting a single word of “running” with “offsetting” your car with solar. However, the constant correction without pointing out the advantages to grid is equally misleading. I am a PV as well as an EV advocate and spend a great deal of time trying to educate people that they are “offsetting” not only their car but their household usage AND that offsetting is good. I further explain that there will hopefully come a time when there is more solar energy being sent to the grid than the utility can use. This has happened in parts of Hawaii but we are most likely decades from that happening in most areas. I further explain that it is highly probable that by then, the storage options will have… Read more »
DaveMart
I have absolutely no problem with the real advantages to the US grid almost everywhere of solar. In fact, I have calculated that as a whole the US could use at minimum 250GW nominal, 50GWe actual, with solar, as that is around the excess of summer peak demand over winter peak. That is an amount hugely in excess of present production, and so amounts to pretty unstinting advocacy of solar at the latitude of the US. In my view however it is the mindless meme that ‘solar is good’ which leads to enormous waste of resources. Nothing is so great that it can’t be made an evil by misapplication. So solar panels end up being plonked in places where it ain’t sunny where it is useful, such as in the UK and Germany, and so even in areas where it is sunny enough, such as the US and the more so the further south you go, you still end up with non-optimal siting and the missallocation of subsidies etc. For the US it is probably around 30% at least more efficient to put solar arrays over work parking places than in homes. Deliberate miss-statements that cars are being ‘powered by… Read more »
Mark Hovis
The workplace can be more efficient or it can be less efficient. Calculating your efficiency, as you well know, is accomplished in two easy steps. First plug in your address to an application like PV-Watts. I know you favor a different one, just pick the one you like. Secondly, practically every solar installer is equipped with a device to calculate annual shading. It is much more productive in educating these two points than nay-saying the what-ifs. You are smarter and better than that Dave. I have no problem correcting the terminology, but I would argue that the we spend a ton of money on far more wasteful indulgence from all forms of entertainment from stadiums to the lottery, than worrying about the inefficiencies of solar even when installed improperly. As for a poor installation, that also implies that an installation is permanent. I often explain that with the proper racking, I can remove the panels from your roof faster than you can move that piano in the corner. Point being that a poor installation is not permanent and can be corrected. “Generally speaking”, if you a) have followed the two steps above and calculated that you are in an area… Read more »
DaveMart

‘Implying that it is wrong is promoting an agenda’

And claiming that a car is powered by solar when the power has never been anywhere near a solar panel is NOT promoting an agenda?

The inaccuracy is quite deliberate, and with the deliberate purpose of promoting an agenda.

Thomas J. Thias

David, do you mean something like this”

Link Goes To thousands of parking lot Solar EV Filling Stations. Protection from the elements is a plus! LOL

Link Goes To Solar EV Filling Stations- Google Images-
https://www.google.com/search?q=solar+parking&biw=1333&bih=661&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=fdlsVNy1DMz8yQSWsIDwBg&ved=0CAYQ_AUoAQ

Pure Driving On Sunshine!

#DrivingOnSunshine
#SolarParking

Best-

Thomas J. Thias

517-749-0532

https://twitter.com/amazingchevvolt

Spec9
“It is part of the reason why I object to the wholly inaccurate claims of some that they are running their car on solar power when they are doing no such thing” You are right Dave . . . when people have solar PV and EVs they are often not driving their cars directly on sunshine . . . WHAT THEY ARE DOING IS EVEN BETTER THAN THAT. The grid has massive amounts of excess capacity at night often that electricity is just wasted because it is hard to throttle coal & nuke plants. However, during the day, there are often shortages of electricity. This forces utilities to fire up “peaker” plants that are often inefficient. Having lots of solar PV prevents this from occuring and prevents such ‘peaker plants’ from needing to be built. Thus, EV owners that charge up at night instead of on their daytime PV electricity are doing a communal good thing. I fail to understand why you never seem to grasp this. Oh, and you are wrong about the parking lot solar structures. They virtually all convert to DC to AC and AC back to DC for charging. It is not a big deal because… Read more »
Bill Howland

I have under 10% loss of juice going to the battery of my cars that originally came from my solar panels. Big Deal. Its not worth the added complication to do anything differently, especially since most of the loss is with the existing charger inside
the car itself which I have little access to.

David

I charge my Volt at my office – my company (SunTrust Bank) installed 8 solar-powered charging stations at a new garage they built last year. During the week, I mostly don’t even need to charge at home. Unfortunately, out of 2,000+ employees at this location, I am the only user of these free charging stations.

James B.

Think of it as a build it and they will come. On a lark… a building in my work complex put in a charger and BAM, there were 10 cars that could use it and a Leaf that sit there over the weekend evenings.

I got a PHEV because I can charge at work, it went from a nice idea to actually reducing significantly my costs. I went form $130 in gas a month to $10. Geant my electric bill went up about $30 year over year.

Thomas J. Thias

Her is the pdf to the Department of Energy ‘Workplace Charging Challenge’ Progress Update -‘Employers Take Charge’

Hat tip to @AutoGrant!

Link Goes To DOE Report 2014- pdf

http://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/2014/11/f19/progress_report_final.pdf

Best-

Thomas J. Thias

517-749-0532

https://twitter.com/AmazingChevVolt

alohart

One of the arguments of EV naysayers is that if we all bought EV’s, we’d have to increase generating capacity significantly. EV advocates argue that most EV charging would be done at home at night when excess generating capacity is available. Now workplace charging is being advocated. EV charging would occur during peak hours when generating capacity could be stretched to the limit. If I am an EV owner who could charge for free at work, why would I charge at home where I must pay for the electricity? The incentives seem wrong unless PV electricity is used for workplace charging or the cost of workplace charging is at least the cost of the electricity consumed.

ModernMarvelFan

That is true.

I think workplace charging should be provided. But It should NOT be “free”. Free encourages the “bad behaviors” that you described. It should be a fee based on to encourage only those who need it to charge. This will double the approximate useful range of typical plugin car.

Bill Howland

Hummm, I wonder why people worry about bad behaviors at 1.4 kw loading, but give Tesla a pass at 120 kw loading, and some posters think that is not nearly enough (PM for instance wants 1000 kw per car). To save any criticism, Let me state here I’m not picking on Tesla for their supercharger’s use of electricity, since they are paying the agreed upon electric bill and it is no business of mine to say that anything should change on that score.

I, of course, posted what corner of the parking lot are we going to put the 85 mw power plant for 85 cars?

Murrysville EV

After more than 2 years driving a Leaf, I’m still the only person I know who has an EV, or even a plug-in vehicle. It’s lonely.

I suggested installing a charger at the office after getting the Leaf, but this was quietly ignored. In hindsight, the office managers were right to ignore the request as it would have been a waste of money catering to just one employee with a leased car.

My round-trip commute is only 18 miles, so it’s not like I need to fill up. Nobody should plan an EV purchase with that expectation.

James B.

Keep trying. There are a few web pages that give you the ammunition to argue FOR a charger. Maybe today it is for you, but tomorrow if could be for many others.

Electricity >> gasoline for the environment, foreign oil and refining, think of it as employee perk that may attract people to work there. How many of those ADA spots are in use everyday?

If you stop asking, they’re going to stop trying to care.

Bill Howland

When I was working for a big corporate name, I’d have been glad if they provided a parking spot for the car; I couldn’t even think of worrying about plugging it in.

As it was, I was basically expected to find my own parking at my own expense. On my own time.