Recent spikes in energy pricing have sharply drawn into focus both the cost and sustainability of our energy supply. V2G (Vehicle to Grid) EV Charging, which essentially uses EVs as a flexible battery source, could be a game changer providing a win-win solution for both EV Driver homeowners and the National Grid and has been pioneered by INDRA.
This is not tomorrow’s world technology, it’s a solution which is already being trialled in the real world and at a time when homeowners are seeing their energy bills escalate, it’s a solution which can give consumers payback right now.
INDRA’s Founder Mike Schooling explains how homeowners can benefit from V2G based on his real-life experience.
“We’ve been trialling Vehicle to Grid (V2G) EV Charging at home for a while and it’s been working brilliantly. At home there’s three of us with average energy consumption habits typical of most busy families. We plug in our Nissan LEAF cars at home using our INDRA V2G smart charger and it means we’re charging and purchasing energy to charge the car at off peak times. Most days we don’t consume all the energy that’s stored in the car and that’s when V2G kicks in, either by returning energy back to the grid when the grid needs it at times of high demand, or using the energy stored in our EVs for V2H (Vehicle to Home) energy to feed back into our home and power our home electricity consumption.
Effectively it means we’re using our own Nissan LEAF cars as dynamic electric storage units, which takes pressure off the grid. It doesn’t compromise the use of our EVs so we can still jump in the car for the average 30 mile journeys we do most days. So V2G is saving my family money on our home energy bills, plus the excess energy we’re able to transfer back to the grid for just three days in September has given us £40 back in payback, whilst of course assisting the grid in managing energy flow during peak demand. If we can help the National Grid to avoid high spikes in demand, we can help prevent our energy source of last resort – coal fired power stations – from needing to be activated, so it’s a massive win to support carbon reduction.
It might sound complicated, but we really don’t need to do very much – just plug in our cars while we are at home and let the INDRA V2G smart charger and app do the work behind the scenes. Because of the energy price fluctuations, at one point we were able to purchase energy at 22p per unit, and then sell it back when it was most needed by the grid at 240p per unit.
The great news is this is all accessible technology using EVs, which is currently being beta tested in the real world and is available right now for EV cars with CHAdeMO connections. We own a seven-year-old Nissan LEAF EV car, which has a small 24kWh battery, and a newer version of the Nissan LEAF model that has a 62kWh battery. An average household uses 10 units of energy on a typical day, which means that even our smaller car can store and provide enough energy for the household’s needs for more than two days. Our newer car can store more than six days’ worth of electricity for the family of three.
As the UK and homeowners look to future solutions for energy sustainability and affordability, V2G and V2H offers a viable solution that will help homeowners, the grid and the environment, so it’s exciting to raise awareness of this exciting and very accessible technology.
If you would like to find out more about the launch of INDRA’s next phase of Vehicle to Home or Vehicle to Grid chargers, please get in touch.