EV Community Update

About to go EV, and there seems to be total confusion on the website on how to switch to the EV tariff. Is it still experimental? The button on About-Bulb-s-EV-Tariff says “Apply to join the EV tariff”, but only links to /electric-vehicles/ which lets me “Sign up to hear the latest on EVs at Bulb”. (Filling that in does no good, nothing happens.) Switching tariff is not an option on our account page. Pretty sure our meter got SMETS2 smartened around June: we have the option to go to 30-minute readings. /360060029071-Check-if-you-re-eligible-for-Bulb-s-EV-Tariff tells you everything you need to know, except how to switch.

May be easiest just to change suppliers…

Oh, and no links in posts? Fantastic. Welcome to the 21st century!

Assuming they’re still allowing customers onto the trial, someone from Bulb should be able to hit a button which makes the EV tariff option appear in your online account dashboard.

As you correctly said, clicking on the link to apply only takes you to a “sign up to hear the latest” form, which as you also said, does absolutely nothing in relation to applying to join the tariff.

Hey @h4yn0nnym0u5e,

Thanks for reaching out - so the tariff is still in Beta as we are expanding and ironing out the bugs to make sure we can offer the best possible tariff to our members.

Eligible members should be able to switch through their bulb account but it sounds like there’s an issue with yours :confused: sorry about that!

I’m going to send you a DM and we can work through it together if that’s ok?

We are still allowing members on to the trial we just need to make sure your account is 100% healthy before we make the switch :oncoming_automobile:

Cheers,
Campbell

Thanks Campbell!

So, for the information of others not privy to our DM conversation (which was very prompt), it turns out that meters can be:

  1. not smart at all
  2. smart, but only for your previous supplier
  3. smart enough for Bulb to let you have readings every 30 minutes
  4. actually smart enough for the EV tariff

We’ve got as far as 3, and Bulb’s “current roadmap is to have these sorted in the next couple months”. Here’s hoping!

My thoughts on Bulb EV tariff:
What a half-hearted attempt to supply a service. I have an EV with a small 42 kWh battery. Home chargers are a maximum 7.4 kWh, so I can’t even fully charge it within the tiny four hour period 2am to 6am, just 29.6 kWh. Today’s middle market cars have 60+ kWh batteries, so they would take two nights to charge. I don’t think the premium car owners with large batteries will be very amused to discover they will need three nights charging on the EV tariff.
Why couldn’t Bulb get a clue from the Economy Seven tariff that’s been successful since 1978?

You don’t need to fully charge your car every night @Monty unless your driving 200+ miles every single day.
When you had a petrol car or diesel car did you fully tank it up every night? I’m guessing not.
As long as you have enough for your journey that day with plenty over does it matter?
Every night when returning home you just pop the car on charge for a little top up.
I think it’s great to have them couple of hours reduced significantly for car charging.

So that would be somewhere in the order of 90-120 miles of range added, depending on how you drive (assuming consumption ranging between 3 and 4 miles/kWh).

How far do you drive each day?

Of course, you do have the option to charge for longer at home if absolutely necessary (eg you arrive home with a low %age charge and have another long trip to make in the very near future), and then some of that charging time would be at your main electricity rate. But that’s almost certainly still well below public rapid charging unit rates (which mainly range from around 30p/kWh to as much as 69p/kWh)!

…or look at it another way. I just did the calculation for our Zoe, 50kWh, 12000 miles / year, 4 miles / battery kWh, 80% charging efficiency so 3.2 miles / kWh drawn from the charge point.

This gives me an average of 10.3 kWh / day needed, so about 1hr23min. To got from zero to full would nominally be just over two nights’ charging (actually a bit more, as the charge rate slows near 100%). As noted by @stevefoster one could charge at the day rate if needed, but I certainly don’t expect to do that often, and it’s still cheaper than using dinosaur juice.

Still hoping for that meter update with a month or two, the EV tariff looks like working for me!

My MG has been on charge at work this evening (5 hours via 13A socket, so ~13-14kWh) for free, and then I went food shopping on the way home, and plugged it in at the supermarket (on a pod-point 7kW post) for a bit over an hour and got another 8kWh (for £0!) while there.

This is brilliant news @stevefoster :raised_hands:

Are you finding it a lot more common to come across EV chargers nowadays? Or have you just figured out where they all are in your local area?

I’m definitely seeing more and more pop up, but as I don’t have an EV, i’ve never looked directly for these. Are there any areas you seem to struggle more t find a charging station in?

–Daisy :bulb:

Zap-map [.com] is an excellent resource for finding EV charge points (and seeing whether they’re likely to be working or accessible when you want them).

A Better Route Planner [.com] is useful for planning long trips where recharging will be needed.

(I’d link to them, if that wasn’t currently disabled).

Woah, thanks @stevefoster these are really helpful and very cool! I’ve passed these onto my dad who has an EV, I know he’ll be very grateful :oncoming_automobile:

Hello can someone from Bulb help please. I had 2nd gen smart meters installed 6 weeks ago and still can’t get on the EV tariff. I phone Bulb every couple of days and always speak to a friendly person who says they will chase the EV team (or in some cases send a new request even though I must have ten requests open!), but literally nothing happens. I sometimes get a polite reply saying they will chase it, but again nothing happens after this. I have asked if it can be escalated, or can I raise a complaint about it, but again both of those questions are never answered. I have asked for help on Twitter yesterday now and haven’t heard back, as a last attempt I am asking for help here. I truly hope Bulb can sort this out, it cant be that hard can it. I have had an EV for 8 weeks now and its costing me so much more, I should have left Bulb a while ago really but keep thinking it will get sorted. I think 1 more week of waiting is my limit, then I’m off. Please help. Luke

Guessing that’s a no then

Hey @lukegibbons , It’s great to hear you want to get on the EV Tariff as soon as possible.

As you had a smart meter installed recently, we just need to wait until your first bill with your smart meter before we can trigger the change.

This is just because we need to make sure you’re smart meter is working exactly as it should be

I’d recommend checking back in a few weeks when your next statement comes through, and we should be able to switch you straight away then :grinning:

-Ed :oncoming_automobile: :zap:

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Thanks for the reply, really appreciate it. Ok will wait until the next bill is generated :grinning::+1:

Hi, i was accepted to be part of the new bulb ev charge point trial and had it fitted by a Siemens technician on Tuesday 26th Sept. According to the instructions I received from bulb I should be able to change my charging schedule via the app within 48 hours of installation. However, for some reason my app is not linking to the charge point which means I cannot make the most of the off peak rates on my ev tariff. I would appreciate if someone could tell me how do I go about getting my charge point to link with my app separately to enode (I have a vw id4 that doesn’t connect to it for some reason!) I’m under the impression that EDMI manufacture the trial boxes - is it them I need to speak to? So far emailed ev support 3 times and not had a response. Any help much appreciated thanks

Sorry if this has been asked / suggested before, but would Bulb consider increasing the time that the cheaper rate is available through the night on the EV tariff? EDF are currently offering 5 hours a night, from 12 midnight until 5 am. Bulb is currently 2-6pm but would 12 midnight until 6am be possible? It would really separate Bulb from the crowd and as EV drivers are likely more savvy when it comes to electricity tariffs, would surely online increase the customer base.