Charging Electric Cars with Solar Panels: What Home & Business Owners Should Know

May. 13, 2019

With gas prices rising and energy independence becoming more attractive than ever before, many people in Massachusetts and throughout the country are making the switch to electric cars, or electric vehicles (EVs). You probably know that owning an electric car can reduce or eliminate the trips you take to the gas station, but did you know it can also help you qualify for valuable incentives  — and get you on the path to using clean solar energy?


Massachusetts Incentives for EV Charging

In the state of Massachusetts, there are incentives for homeowners, building managers, and businesses who are considering making the switch to an electric vehicle or investing in EV charging.


MOR-EV incentives

Through the Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles (MOR-EV) program, you can earn up to $1,500 in rebates for the purchase or lease of an electric car and up to $450 in rebates for the purchase or lease of a zero-emission motorcycle.


Federal income tax credit

Here’s one you can take advantage of even if you don’t reside in the state of Massachusetts. You can earn an income tax credit of up to $7,500 from the federal government when you purchase an electric or hybrid vehicle.


MassEVIP grants

For multi-unit dwellings (MUDs) and workplaces, the Massachusetts Electric Vehicle Incentive Program (MassEVIP) is offering grants of 60% for the cost of Level 1 or Level 2 EV supply equipment, up to $50,000. Eligible entities include MUDs with 10 or more residential units, as well as workplaces with 15 or more employees on-site.


Eversource incentives

Eversource is offering to cover 100% of implementation costs of thousands of new charging stations across the state of Massachusetts. Implementation costs include trenching, a transformer (if necessary), a dedicated service meter, panels, conduits, and necessary wiring — for up to ten Level 2 chargers. Customers are still responsible for covering the costs of purchasing and installing the charging stations.


Reading Municipal Light Department rebates

For homeowners, the Reading Municipal Light Department (RMLD) is currently offering a rebate up to $500 to those who purchase and install a Level 2 charging station. (Level 2 charging stations use a higher-output power source than conventional Level 1 stations and therefore charge EVs much more quickly.) Receive $500 for networked or “smart” station and $100 for a non-networked station.

For commercial building managers and businesses, the RMLD is offering a rebate up to $1,500 to those who purchase and install a Level 2 charging station. This rebate covers up to 50% of any out of pocket expenses, including equipment and installation costs.


Charging Your Electric Vehicle with Solar Energy

While switching to an electric car can reduce your reliance on fossil fuels significantly and save you on energy costs in the long run, pairing your EV charger(s) with solar can take those benefits even further. Charging an electric car with solar panels allows you to power your car with free energy from the sun, rather than with unpredictably priced electricity from the power grid. Plus, if you install more solar panels than are needed to charge your electric car, you can also use your solar panels to generate clean electricity for your home.


“How many solar panels are needed to charge an electric car?”

Many of our customers ask how many solar panels are required to charge an electric car. This number can vary depending on the size of your car’s battery, your car’s mileage rating, how far you drive every day, and the efficiency of the solar panels you install; but a typical range is about 10 solar panels for an average 25-miles-per-day commuter. Many residential solar PV systems have 20 to 30 solar panels, which is more than enough to handle an electric vehicle’s charging needs.

Our solar experts can help you design a system that is precisely sized to suit your home electricity and electric car’s needs. If you’re not quite ready to install a larger system now but want to take advantage of SMART incentives and the Federal Solar Tax Credit before they disappear, we can even help you install a smaller solar PV system that is “add-on ready” for when you are ready to expand your system.


Interested in EV + Solar? Talk to Boston Solar

If you’re considering making the switch to an electric vehicle and taking your energy independence even further with solar panels, get in touch with the team at Boston Solar. We’ve helped numerous customers charge their electric cars with solar, and we can even help you install your solar powered EV charger. Plus, as the #1 residential solar installer based in Massachusetts, and with over 3,800 residential and commercial installations under our belt, we know a thing or two about helping customers go solar while taking advantage of statewide and federal incentives.


Interested in using clean, renewable energy to power your car? Call 617-858-1645 or contact us to learn more about pairing an electric car with solar!

Charging Electric Cars with Solar Panels: What Home & Business Owners Should Know

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