Sky high electric bill - 2018 Honda Clarity Forum
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-23-2019, 05:59 PM Thread Starter
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Sky high electric bill

We got our Clarity about a month ago (2018 plug-in hybrid). Our electric bill this month is roughly $200 more than last month and the same month last year. Is this normal?? I did not expect this at all. It's been a hot month (so probably using more energy to run A/C in the house), but not THAT hot. We use the regular 120v plug and usually have to fully charge it each night. We're charging during non-peek hours though (night).

Last edited by srsharp; 09-23-2019 at 06:07 PM.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-23-2019, 10:55 PM
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We got our Clarity about a month ago (2018 plug-in hybrid). Our electric bill this month is roughly $200 more than last month and the same month last year. Is this normal?? I did not expect this at all. It's been a hot month (so probably using more energy to run A/C in the house), but not THAT hot. We use the regular 120v plug and usually have to fully charge it each night. We're charging during non-peek hours though (night).
Did you switch rate plans since last year or were you already on the same time of use plan? Time of use plans save money for any charging done during off-peak, but not as much as you might expect because in most states many of the tariffs are charged based on kWh, in other words the electric usage part of your bill gets the lower rate during off-peak but many of the tariffs are at the same rate regardless of what time of day it is.

Also most time of use plans have a pretty steep penalty for any electrical use during weekdays during the summer, so if you use house A/C at all during the day it can offset much of the savings you get from charging at night.
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-24-2019, 01:29 AM
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Originally Posted by srsharp View Post
We got our Clarity about a month ago (2018 plug-in hybrid). Our electric bill this month is roughly $200 more than last month and the same month last year. Is this normal?? I did not expect this at all. It's been a hot month (so probably using more energy to run A/C in the house), but not THAT hot. We use the regular 120v plug and usually have to fully charge it each night. We're charging during non-peek hours though (night).
Doing some rough "ballpark" arithmetic: Clarity has a 17kW battery - charging from empty to full every night for 30 nights is 510kW. That would come to about 40 cents/kW - which is higher than Hawaii's rate and Hawaii has the most expensive electricity in the nation at 32.45 cents/kW. So I'm guessing there are a number of things contributing to the rise in your bill.

My utility just installed "smart" meters on houses - and we all saw a rise in our bill. The utility says it's because the new meters are more accurate...
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-24-2019, 09:07 AM
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My utility just installed "smart" meters on houses - and we all saw a rise in our bill. The utility says it's because the new meters are more accurate...
I've had this happen twice in the last two years - new meters => higher electric bills.

2018 Honda Clarity Touring PHEV - Forest Green w/Tan interior (wife's car)
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-24-2019, 09:25 AM
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OP where are you located ? What is your local cost per kW hour ?

Hate to see what a BEV car will do.....
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-24-2019, 10:44 AM
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I have had my Clarity about 12 months and have 16,000 miles on it. My electric bill is about $35 higher than prior to having the Clarity. Electric rate are $.06 per kwh in the winter and $.12 per kwh in the summer.
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-24-2019, 10:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Kerbe View Post
Doing some rough "ballpark" arithmetic: Clarity has a 17kW battery - charging from empty to full every night for 30 nights is 510kW. That would come to about 40 cents/kW - which is higher than Hawaii's rate and Hawaii has the most expensive electricity in the nation at 32.45 cents/kW. So I'm guessing there are a number of things contributing to the rise in your bill.
Clarity only uses about 14 kWh of the battery so that would work out to about 47 cents/kWh.

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My utility just installed "smart" meters on houses - and we all saw a rise in our bill. The utility says it's because the new meters are more accurate...
I assume your rate plan also changed to time of use? If so that's likely where you are seeing the difference. TOU plans don't always save money it depends on how much electricity you are able to shift away from peak.

In Georgia the standard rate including taxes is 11 cents/kWh. Although during the summer any amount over 650 kWh is 16 cents and since I am usually already over 650 then basically 16 cents is the rate I was paying for charging during summer, 11 cents the rest of the year.

I now have a time of use plan and I pay only 5 cents / kWh including taxes from 11:00 pm to 7:00 am. So I limit all of my charging to those hours. I also run my house A/C pretty heavy from 3:00 am to 7:00 am to suck any remaining heat out of the house while it is very cheap to do so.

Outside of those hours the rate is essentially the standard rate, but with one big catch, during the summer from 2:00 pm to 8:00 pm Mon-Fri the rate including taxes is 33 cents which is basically triple the standard rate. If I were to run A/C during those hours it would be a huge hit on my bill. But since I cool the house down to 71 in the early morning hours and then maintain 74 up until 2:00 pm, I can completely shut off AC from 2:00 pm to 8:00 pm and even on the hottest days it only gets to about 78 by 8:00 pm, then I turn A/C back on.

Not everyone will do what I am doing, but if someone runs AC during peak hours on a time of use plan they may not realize how much that afternoon/early evening AC is costing them.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-24-2019, 10:52 AM
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I have had my Clarity for 12 months and 16,000 miles. About 90% of my miles are electric and I can charge at work twice a week. My electric rates are $.06 in the winter and $.12 in the summer per kwh. My average bill is about $35 higher than before the Clarity. Obviously your experience will be different depending on how you drive and how many of your miles are electric vs gas.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-24-2019, 11:28 AM
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We've been driving an average of about 900 miles a month on electricity for 6 years (Fit EV, Clarity Electric). Our bill is about $25/mo for the electricity used to charge the car. We are not on TOU, and our incremental electricity cost is ~$.11 with taxes, fees, etc.

Gary

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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Unread 09-24-2019, 07:28 PM
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I assume your rate plan also changed to time of use?
Nope - we have one rate all day.

My Nest thermostat knows when I'm home - when I leave it allows the temp to rise or fall to a predetermined level: 80 in cooling season, 60 in heating season.
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