PlugShare is an online interactive service that helps electric car owners find an available EV charger when they are away from home. It includes a trip planning service that not only tells drivers where to find an EV charger along the way but also what amenities are nearby. It’s much nicer to enjoy a good meal while your electric vehicle is recharging than standing around in a deserted cornfield listening to crickets if there is a choice.
Sungevity is one of the top installers of rooftop solar in the US and is particularly active in the California market. Now the two companies have teamed up to give customers an important benefit — a free GE WattStation™ home EV charger for PlugShare members in California who go solar with Sungevity.
The Drive Solar program is designed to raise public awareness about the benefits of driving an electric car. A recent survey by the Union of Concerned Scientists found that 80% of drivers surveyed were unaware of the $7,500 federal tax credit for purchasers of electric cars. This was true even in California, which has more plug-in and electric cars on the road than any other state in the nation.
The program can save customers money as well. Often, a professional electrician needs to be hired to connect a solar panel system. An electrician also needs to be hired to install a home battery charger. With the Drive Solar campaign, an electrician can perform both functions at once. Time is money. Less time means customers need to spend less money to get the benefit of rooftop solar and a home charger for their EV. The savings can be $2,000 or more.
According to PlugInsights, which is PlugShare’s consumer research division, about 12% of drivers who acquired an electric vehicle in 2015 had rooftop solar. Solar power and electric cars are two ideas that go hand in hand. It would be great if other solar installers would adopt the Drive Solar model being pioneered by these two forward thinking companies.