Most of Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA)’s Model S owners are affluent people. A recent study by Opower reveals that electric car owners are consuming “gobs of electricity” while most of us dream of owning an electric car one day. Most EV owners live a large life. They have bigger houses, more amenities, and are more likely to have a rooftop solar system that sends energy back to the utility grid.
Utilities offer incentives to owners of Tesla and other EV owners
Households with electric cars consume a lot of electricity to get charged up for the next day. That could pose a real problem in the long run. As EVs go mainstream, utilities will have to urge customers not to plug in during peak hours of energy demand. Huge electricity demand in the afternoon is known to destabilize the electric grid.
Therefore, utilities in several states including Texas, California and Georgia have started offering incentives toward off-peak our car charging. People who sign up for this program get discounted electricity between midnight and 7:00 a.m. Data collected by Opower show that these incentives have worked well. Opower has the database of more than 50 million households. It provides a software to utilities that helps them become more efficient.
Tesla owners still consume more electricity
In many households with electric cars, power consumption rises four times the typical levels at night. The data includes EVs including Tesla Model S, Nissan Leaf and other plug-ins. Opower compared data from 2,000 households in the western U.S. that charge their vehicles at night, to data from about a million typical households.
Between midnight and 7:00 a.m., households with EVs consume three times as much electricity as non-EV owners. Energy use in EV households spikes around midnight, and begins declining toward 6:00 a.m. Interestingly, EV owners still consume 21% more electricity than their peers during the day. That may be because they have larger homes and bigger amenities.
Tesla shares fell 3.15% to $215.65 at 12:15 PM EDT on Tuesday after a Model S crash in California.