Will you buy an electric or hybrid car next?

Yes, we’ve never had an issue. We’re in MA. We’re close enough to many gas stations that if a hurricane is coming people gas up. Many people where I live (rural) have gas in canisters for various things around their farms or for their tractors. And people tend to hunker down during very bad weather ( mostly Winters). I don’t recall any gas pumps going out for any length of time. Then again, power’s usually out for an hour or two at most. During Sandy, power went out in some places but not on our street. And no gas issues.

I have noticed more people with generators and solar over the last 15 years. We really don’t have an ongoing issue with electric/oil/gas issues. I don’t think the grid has ever been overloaded like CA or other Western states.

That is a very good point. I had NEVER thought about the need for electricity to power the gas pumps.

My electrical panel upgrade and addition of a charging station has been a raving success. Even our kids are excited about quickly both cars (EV and PHEV) charge.

This discussion makes me really want to consider solar. If there is an electrical failure here that is long-lasting, it means all cars (EV, PHEV, gas, and I guess even hydrogen) are at risk.

Something to consider for next year!


Very tough right now to get someone to install/get the right panels. Might be different in your area. We’ve been trying for 2 years.

Amen. It was a nightmare.

My electrician, who is GREAT, could not get a solar-ready 200 amp panel from any of his suppliers. On a whim, after dropping D at school, I stopped at an electrical supply store on the way home. Lo and behold, they had ONE 200 amp solar-ready panel. I called my electrician from the store, and he talked to the fellow at the shop. My electrician said “Buy it right now!”. Even if it didn’t work for me, he had tons of other customers who were looking for this kind of panel and he would be happy to buy it from me.

Then, we couldn’t find the hub to go with the panel. It’s just a piece of metal, with nothing fancy. My electrician couldn’t source, and I scoured all the Home Depots and Lowes within a 50-mile radius. I found a grand total of one store (a Home Depot about 40 miles away) that had the hub we needed. Needless to say, I drove there the next day and got one.

Finally, I decided to go the extra mile (so to speak) and get a charging station. I had been looking at ChargePoints since late last year. Now that we had everything, I thought, let’s get this too, with a 60amp station. Of course, Amazon, which used to sell it for approx $600 was now selling it for more than $900. Again, I searched the internet and found one from an electrical supply company on the East Coast for the original approx. $600 price

It is VERY difficult. I speak from very recent experience. But, working together with my electrician and both of us working at sourcing stuff, it worked out. We finally went live with our station this summer (having to deal with permits, city inspections, and the electric company), but it all worked out in the end.

Honestly, in the Bay Area, our biggest issues with the grid are fires and earthquakes. For fires, the electric company (PG&E) will shut down the electricity if conditions warrant (usually very dry and high winds), but that hasn’t happened in 2 years now. For earthquakes, well, that’s a different issue altogether…

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You know, I was yammering away at getting the ELECTRICAL panel. By chance, were you talking about SOLAR panels?

Yes, solar. But the same applies across the board. People who want to install geothermal are looking at more than 100K ( I’ve sent a few friends to our installer)and 1 year runway. People are interested in alternate energy but supplies and installers haven’t kept up.

Some gas stations do have battery backups, but when their batteries go out…

That’s good (and bad) to know. I wasn’t aware that there was a lack of solar panel supply. It may be because of our very bad relations with China.

So, maybe solar is a project for TWO years from now. :smiley:

We’ve had EVs for 7 years now and never had a problem with getting juice to 'em. We have a level 2 charger installed in the garage (just plugs into the same 220 that our stove is on on the other side of the wall) and during the many power outages we have had over the past 7 years (usually just a few hours, but sometimes 24-48 hrs) our car has been fine because it’s already charged up. In fact it’s a great place to go get warm or cool in the garage (no worries about carbon monoxide fumes with an EV) or to charge phones or we could even use an inverter to run other appliances (we have an inverter, but have never used it). Usually we just keep the fridge shut and hope the power will come back on soon. Haven’t had a major event in several years, but it’s pretty sweet to have that massive battery there if you need it.


You’ll want battery to go with your solar if you want power during outages.


Would suspect that there are not all that many gas stations with battery backups!

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My DS#1 installed solar panels on the house that he is currently selling in CA. When he was just charging one EV his utility bills were IIRC nonexistent, but with 2 kids and 2 EVs, he has had to actually pay an electric bill. Hoping the solar panels are a good selling point!


It’ll depend on region (areas where there are a lot of hurricanes, for example) and whether the gas station is a “mom and pop” operation versus owned by a larger ownership group.

You would be surprised though.

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Posted this on another thread so sorry for the duplication. Study regarding optimal charging of EVs out of Stanford. They recommend day charging at charging stations and work, not at home at night.


Re: solar panels. Our project got postponed not because the panels were not available but because the project manager assigned to us by the installer was a real moron and could not apply for a permit… A higher unemployment might not be a bad thing.


This is a funny piece. We are on a TOU plan with PG&E, with the lowest rates between 12 midnight - 3pm. So, this piece recommends charging at late morning/early afternoon?

That fits fine with our rate plan and lifestyle.

Thanks for making the case!

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I think they’re trying to make policy (rate) change for PG&E. It was the claim for lower carbon emissions at the charging station that puzzled me. To be honest I haven’t read the study yet so I’ll report back when I have a minute.

In all seriousness, the very low TOU rate that we have has such flexible hours, it’s no problem.

The most recent issues with electricity usage curbs in CA had to do with the excessive heat a few weeks ago. We had no outages, and did fine given the 15 hours we have at the lowest rate.

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In my average driving around in our EV since we’re empty nesters I can easily go a week or more w/o charging. I did plug in tonight ‘cause it was down around 160 range (a little more than half a “tank”) and I like to keep it a little more charged. Usually try to keep it between 60-80% if we’re not on a road trip. So if we have a power outage I’m pretty set.


With our Wallbox, my husband plugs his X only when he is down to about 60-80 miles and no extraordinary driving (like retrieving our cat from a specially vet) is in the plans. :slight_smile:

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