Jeff Myrom is an EV driver with not one, but two EVs in his garage. With two EVs to charge, he found an innovative solution to use only one charger. As Consumers Energy’s Director of Electric Transportation Customer Products, he walks the walk (drives the drive?) of EVs every day. We got a tour of Jeff’s garage and spoke to him about his EV journey.

EV Model
2022 Kia EV6
2023 Tesla Model  Y

Home EVSE
Grizzl-E Duo

WHAT GOT YOU INTERESTED IN DRIVING ELECTRIC?
“I really enjoy learning about new technology and clean energy topics. So, five years ago when I got the opportunity to drive a company Chevy Bolt EV, I took it and was immediately impressed with the driving performance and interior space.”

WHAT EV OR EVS DID YOU BUY OR LEASE AND WHY?
“After much research and a series of fortunate events, I bought a Kia EV6 in 2022. Originally, I was  debating between a Hyundai Ioniq 5 and a Tesla Model Y, but the Ioniq 5 was not being sold or serviced in Michigan. The Tesla Model Y had a higher price point in 2022 and wasn’t eligible for the federal tax credit at that time.”

[Editor’s note: The pricing and federal tax credit status has changed for 2024 and most Tesla models are eligible for some portion of the federal tax credit. Consider some online research for the latest.]

“I wasn’t considering the Kia EV6 as the roof looked low and I didn’t think it would have the headroom for me being 6’ 5”. But the headroom was plenty good, and it looked amazing, so the hunt began. I learned the EV6 was being sold in Michigan and that all Kia dealers could service it.” After some searching, he found one without dealer markup despite the EV6’s popularity.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR EXPERIENCE SO FAR?
“Fantastic! The vehicle is very comfortable, has lots of room in the rear passenger area, handles incredibly well in snow (better than my previous Subaru), and the 800 Volt battery architecture means that I often finish fast charging before EVs that were already charging when I arrived. The max rate of charge I’ve achieved is the advertised 240 kW and going from 20-80% state of charge in 18 minutes.”

HAVE YOU EXPERIENCED RANGE ANXIETY?
“No, but I’m also a person who is prepared and enjoys striking out into new areas, having done backcountry trips in quite remote areas. With a combined charging system vehicle, always do your trip research on PlugShare and find fallback options if needed. I have had some close calls where I showed up at a charging station that had only one functioning plug, and also had a strong winter wind reduce my EV down to 5% of the battery instead of the ~15% I was expecting up arrival, but I’ve never been stranded. If you don’t drive a Tesla, then be prepared, and do some research on PlugShare.”
PlugShare is a popular web page and app for finding public EV chargers, seeing photos of the surroundings and reading about recent user experience.

TELL US ABOUT CHARGING TWO EVS AT THE SAME TIME?
Jeff has since added a Tesla Model Y as his family’s second EV and now needed to charge two EVs at night. Knowing the importance to the grid to charge during off-peak hours (11 PM – 6 AM on weekdays and all day on weekends), he knew this might be a challenge.

“At first it may make you nervous that charging during those hours won’t be sufficient. But you’ll find that it is, and that off-peak charging will save you significant money in addition to the overnight charging incentive.”

In “Undercover Boss” style, Jeff used the Consumers Energy EV specialist service and electrician installer network incognito to have a single 240V 50A circuit installed in his garage. He chose the qualified Grizzl-E Duo EVSE (charger) that’s UL Listed and Energy Star rated and features a single 50A input plug and two J1772 plugs. Using smart power splitting, this EVSE can either split the 40A to two 20A power feeds thereby providing each car with about 5 KW of charging power. It can also be programmed to deliver all the power to one vehicle first, then charge the second sequentially. Using this innovative charging solution, a second charging circuit is not necessary for most two EV households.
In addition to claiming the $500 rebate on the charger installation, “I also enrolled in the Smart Charging Incentive program that rewards EV drivers $10 per month over 12-months who only charge super off-peak. Once you get used to the cost savings and capabilities of time of use rates with off-peak charging, you’ll never go back.”

HAVE YOU SEEN MUCH OF AN INCREASE IN YOUR ELECTRIC BILL RELATED TO EV CHARGING?
“Not really. Our home electric bill maybe increased up to $50 in some months, but my transportation fueling cost in total dropped by more than 50%. I only charge super off-peak, meaning weekdays 11PM to 6AM, and on weekends. The electric rates on Nighttime Savers during those time periods are equivalent to about $1.30 per e-gallon.”

Most EV drivers (and even most non-EV drivers) can save on their electricity bill by switching to the Nighttime Savers rate plan and shifting some energy use to off-peak hours… like programming your dishwasher to run after 11 PM. If you want to see what rate plan is right for you, contact us and we can run a simulation using your last 12 months of electricity use to see which plan saves you the most money.

IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SHARE?
“Internet research will only get you so far, and I’m seeing more and more misinformation coming out from the anti-EV pundits. Thus, I highly recommend coming out to an EV event or connecting with someone you know who drives an EV. There is nothing like getting behind the wheel and learning about real world experience from others. Maybe an EV won’t work for you, but a plug-in hybrid will, or you keep a vehicle of each fuel type in the garage; but I suspect that for most people a full EV will work way better than you imagine.”

Speaking of EV events, Consumers Energy usually has an info table at many of the Drive Electric Earth Day events coming up in April. Check them out to see if there’s a show near you.

If you can’t make it, find out more and connect with an EV specialist by filling out the form at the bottom of our website at consumersenergy.com/ev.