Taking Charge

Tom Namovich, a Great Lakes Energy (GLE) member, decided to embark on the electric vehicle (EV) journey and purchased a Chevrolet Bolt EUV. However, when he drove from his primary residence in the Detroit area to his cabin in northern Michigan, Tom quickly realized some challenges in his journey.

EV charging stations are fewer and farther between in rural areas, and there weren’t any charging stations in the vicinity to recharge once he arrived at his cabin. Tom prepared to make do with a 120V charger but found it charged extremely slow at three to four miles per hour (mph). This was far from ideal, especially for someone who valued efficiency and convenience. The prospect of upgrading to a 240V fast charger, which could deliver over 20 miles per hour of charge, was much more appealing.

Several factors, including the rebate requirements, influenced Tom’s purchase of a ChargePoint smart charger. Tom discovered GLE’s Energy Wise program through a mailer and a Michigan Country Lines magazine article. Intrigued by the potential rebates for EV chargers, he explored the program further and joined a few social media groups that discussed EV chargers. He learned that a smart charger, which connects to Wi-Fi, was necessary for a rebate, which helped narrow his options down to three viable choices.

Purchasing the ChargePoint smart charger online for about $500, Tom also benefited from a partial installation cost coverage by the auto manufacturer, General Motors, as part of an EV incentive program. With the addition of an Energy Wise rebate from Great Lakes Energy, Tom’s net expenditure on the charger and installation was reduced to just a few hundred dollars.

Navigating the Energy Wise program’s website was a breeze for Tom. He found the information he needed effortlessly and was pleasantly surprised by how straightforward the rebate application process was. “The process couldn’t have gone any easier,” Tom remarked. “Between filling out the application, submitting it, and receiving the rebate, it was a surprisingly short amount of time.”

Having the charger installed at his cabin transformed Tom’s charging experience. Instead of taking days to achieve a full charge, he could now do it in just a few hours. This upgrade was particularly beneficial for his trips from southeast Michigan to Charlevoix, allowing him to easily start each journey at full charge.

Reflecting on the entire process, Tom noted, “I probably would’ve installed one anyway, but taking advantage of the rebate really helped time it right and sped my decision up. And you don’t know how long the rebates will be around.”

His testimonial highlights the ease and efficiency of the Energy Wise program, making it an excellent resource for other GLE members considering EV charger installations.

Tom took charge and, with the help of Energy Wise, turned what could have been a costly upgrade into a seamless and economical transition.

Smart EV Chargers

Utilizes advanced technology and connectivity to control how and when an EV receives power, considering electricity costs, availability, and the owner’s needs. Allowing operators to oversee, regulate, and modify energy usage.

“The process couldn’t have gone any easier,” Tom remarked. “Between filling out the application, submitting it, and receiving the rebate, it was a surprisingly short amount of time.”
The GLE Energy Wise program rewards members for their energy optimization efforts with rebates to help offset the cost of purchasing energy-efficient products and systems.

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