Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 32 total)
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  • #62486
    Boronia
    Flatchatter

    What happens when there are two EVs (or more) in the building? Are they going to share that power point?

     

    #62488
    Jimmy-T
    Keymaster
    Chat-starter

    It’s a building with more than 100 units.  Looking at the picture in the SMH, there are many power points in the garage.

    Even so, it is very simple to put an in-line meter on a power source and a separate locked socket for anyone else that needed it.  The available technology is very advanced and inexpensive.  You can even access some meters using your credit card, phone or pass key.

    Strata Answers is running courses for City of Sydney informing people what their real choices are.  Saying ‘too hard” is not a valid option.

    • This reply was modified 2 months, 1 week ago by .
    #62493
    Sir Humphrey
    Strataguru

    A useful thing for an Owners Corporation to have is a staged EV charging plan. For the first few early adopters, it would not cause any problem to do something formalised but simple and temporary such as allowing the use of ordinary common property power points with conditions attached. Those conditions could include a simple kWh counter in line so that the EV driver can reimburse the OC for the costs or a reasonable estimate of costs based on milage.

    Another condition would be recognition that such arrangements are temporary until EV numbers are higher and a more sophisticated arrangement may be needed. More sophisticated arrangements could include a building load management system to share the available supply capacity among networked charging outlets by slowing down or stopping charging during the evening peak and speeding up charging as the demand from the rest of the building is reduced during the day and night.

    #62513
    StM@lo
    Flatchatter

    Here’s an Idea! Perhaps instead of telling Strata Communities their position is extremely short-sighted. Electric Vehicle Council CEO Behyad Jafari, and his organisation could be pro-active and research, and create a “standard bylaw” proposal that is compliant with strata law, and make it available to all!

    #62516
    Jimmy-T
    Keymaster
    Chat-starter

    Perhaps instead of telling Strata Communities their position is extremely short-sighted. Electric Vehicle Council CEO Behyad Jafari, and his organisation could be pro-active and research, and create a “standard bylaw” proposal

    Maybe because strata law isn’t his area of expertise.  Perhaps someone will pass his comments on to SCA or Fair Trading or the Property Commissioner or anyone who wouldn’t have to learn a completely new skill set just to ask the right questions. (oh, hang on, I think I kind of did that already).

    I am flabbergasted at the level of resistance there is to electric vehicles in this country, especially among politicians.  The recent reversal of sustainability measures proposed by NSW Planning is a huge retrograde step and a clear message to the strata community that our leaders think climate change and energy security aren’t serious issues.

    All it would take is for our invisible Fair Trading Minister to get one of her many minions to say: “Go ahead and fix a meter or two to the electricity supply, on a user-pays basis, and charge the owners for the energy used, until such times as you want to upgrade to full EV charging in your block.  We’ll sort out the legalities later.”

    If we need to have a by-law every time there’s a miniscule change to common property – and I’m not convinced a by-law is necessary in this case – we’ll be back in the stone-age before we know it.

    #62518
    Level_one
    Flatchatter

    We are currently encouraging the introduction of EV charging facilities across our entire Community of some 55 Strata and unmanaged use of common property power as in this example we would consider one of the least desirable routes to go and not to be encouraged. It would appear I need to note that I am a Lot Owner as part of a team looking to develop guidelines to assist Strata in providing EV charging facilities within our Community and have been dealing with many of these issues at the “Coal Face”.

    Generally the design load and usage factor on a common property supply can be very limited. In our case the power available in the garage is designed primarily to operate the garage door openers and it is assumed all will not be operating at the same time. This circuit has to power 32 door openers which is fine if only a small percentage are being used at any one time.  To use such a circuit for multiple EV chargers is not likely to be sustainable.

    I would also suggest that expecting that all users will confine there charging to off peak times is optimistic. Bear in mind that any power usage that impacts on the capacity charge for your common property supply takes 12 months to work itself out of the billing cycle so even if you had 3 chargers working  simultaneously for only 5 minutes in peak period it can impact on the billing for the next 12 months.  If the peak capacity charge is impacted by even one EV charger this reports to the Owners Corporation irrespective of whether the user pays for the kW used for charging. Refer to Ausgrid for the calculation of the Peak Capacity charge.

    There are a wide range of solutions from relatively simple to more complex that ensure that EV charging can be retrofitted without any negative impact on the existing power supply to the overall complex and also ensure that user pays for power which is in the best interest of all Lot Owners. Buildings have already experienced brownouts with the installation of induction cooktops and so the emphasis of being able to install chargers without any increase to the design load is a key factor in getting approval.  Connecting chargers without load management into the common property supply is not seen as a way to help allay the fears of the uniformed.

    The NSW DPIE will shortly be releasing a document that has been prepared in conjunction with the OCN that will outline many of the available options.

    DPIE – Technical Guidelines for Making Residential Buildings EV- ready

    In my particular case we have both air conditioning compressors and Lot Owners meters located in the basement garage and with the appropriate interlocks the Lot Owner can use his own metered power within the design capacity of his supply to charge his EV. An excellent solution where available as 100% Lot Owner funded and 100% paid for on his own electricity bill and no impact on the OC peak capacity charge.

    This may require a bylaw to run cabling through common property from the meter/compressor to his garage but this option can be a totally user pays model and relatively inexpensive to implement considering the benefits to both the Lot Owner and the Owners Corporation. In many cases within our Community it is not possible to even get a 50% vote at a meeting because of concerns raised by non-informed owners about the risks associated with EV charging. These can be financial risks associated with the use of common property power but more commonly the impact on insurance premiums of which I am unaware of any facts to support this concern.

    Certainly in other cases where access to the Lot Owners metered power is not available a more sophisticated common property system might be required but even in this situation for a relatively small expenditure by the Owners Corporation there are options to install EV charging without any negative impact on the overall building supply.

    Keep a look out for the DPIE publication when released and assess what options might be applicable to your building.

     

    • This reply was modified 2 months, 2 weeks ago by .
    #62522
    Jimmy-T
    Keymaster
    Chat-starter

    We are currently encouraging the introduction of EV charging facilities across our entire Community of some 55 Strata and unmanaged use of common property power as in this example we would consider one of the least desirable routes to go and not to be encouraged.

    Congratulations on embracing the issue across the buildings you manage and good luck with wrangling the myriad options and issues that will be presented.  But less face it, the strata manager concerned could have handled this better.

    Generally the design load and usage factor on a common property supply can be very limited . In our case the power available in the garage is designed primarily to operate the garage door openers and it us assumed all will not be operating at the same time. To use such a circuit for multiple EV chargers is not likely to be sustainable.

    Yes, but this wasn’t an application for multiple chargers, it was for ONE. The tenant was advised to get the landlord to go to the hassle and expense to get a by-law (unnecessarily).

    I would also suggest that expecting that all users will confine their charging to off peak times is optimistic.

    Realistic, not optimistic. Most people using low-voltage trickle chargers do so when they are at home in the evening.  Also this is ONE person. If there were more wanting to do it, you would presumably adapt your policy and limit the usage until the system could cope.

    This may require a bylaw to run cabling through common property from the meter/compressor to his garage but this option can be a totally user pays model and relatively inexpensive to implement considering the benefits to both the Lot Owner and the Owners Corporation.

    I don’t think so. Section 110 of the Act specifies the installation of  electrical cabling and power points as a minor renovation only requiring approval which must not unreasonably be refused.

    Section 132B of the Act actually specifies installation of EV charging as a sustainability measure, not requiring a by-law, per se, but a Sustainability Special Resolution which only requires a simple majority vote.

    On the question of multiple use, that’s something that can be estimated as single users increase in numbers to a limit established by an electrical engineer. As the take-up is increased, more sophisticated systems can be introduced before the building is browned out.

    We shouldn’t let perfect be the enemy of good.

    • This reply was modified 2 months, 2 weeks ago by .
    #62545
    Level_one
    Flatchatter

    It would appear I need to clarify my previous post as I have been actively involved with looking at a wide range of solutions to assist Strata install EV charging across our entire Community of some 55 Strata and unmanaged use of common property power as in this example we would consider one of the least desirable routes to go and not to be encouraged. Certainly for one user it might appear as a simple solution but is not a long term solution and when proposed here has not even had enough support to be passed under Section 132B. It would appear I need to note that I am a Lot Owner as part of a team looking to develop guidelines to assist Strata in providing EV charging facilities within our Community and have been dealing with many of these issues at the “Coal Face”.

    Generally the design load and usage factor on an individual common property supply can be very limited. In our case the power available in the garage circuit is designed primarily to operate the garage door openers and it is assumed all will not be operating at the same time. This circuit has to power 32 door openers which is fine if only a small percentage are being used at any one time.  To use such a circuit for multiple EV chargers is not likely to be sustainable.

    I would also suggest that expecting that all users with unmanaged access to the common property supply will confine there charging to off peak times is optimistic. Bear in mind that any power usage that impacts on the capacity charge for your common property supply takes 12 months to work itself out of the billing cycle so even if you had 3 chargers working  simultaneously for only 5 minutes in peak period it can impact on the billing for the next 12 months.  If the peak capacity charge is impacted by even one EV charger this reports to the Owners Corporation irrespective of whether the user pays for the specific kW used for charging. Refer to Ausgrid for the calculation of the Peak Capacity charge.

    There are a wide range of solutions from relatively simple to more complex that ensure that EV charging can be retrofitted without any negative impact on the existing power supply to the overall complex and also ensure that user pays for power which is in the best interest of all Lot Owners. Buildings have already experienced brownouts with the installation of induction cooktops and so the emphasis of being able to install chargers without any increase to the design load is a key factor in getting approval.  Connecting chargers without load management into the common property supply is not seen as a way to help allay the fears of the uniformed.

    In my particular case we have both air conditioning compressors and Lot Owners meters located in the basement garage and with the appropriate interlocks the Lot Owner can use his own metered power within the design capacity of his supply to charge his EV. An excellent solution where available as 100% Lot Owner funded and 100% paid for on his own electricity bill and no impact on the OC peak capacity charge.

    This may require a bylaw to run cabling through common property from the meter/compressor to his garage but this option can be a totally user pays model and relatively inexpensive to implement considering the benefits to both the Lot Owner and the Owners Corporation. In many cases within our Community it is not possible to even get a 50% vote at a meeting because of concerns raised by non-informed owners about the risks associated with EV charging. These can be financial risks associated with the use of common property power but more commonly the impact on insurance premiums of which I am unaware of any facts to support this concern.

    Certainly in other cases where access to the Lot Owners metered power is not available a more sophisticated common property system might be required but even in this situation for a relatively small expenditure by the Owners Corporation there are options to install EV charging without any negative impact on the overall building supply.

    For the currently available information relating to NSW refer

    Refer https://www.energysaver.nsw.gov.au/reducing-emissions-nsw/electric-vehicles/electric-vehicle-ready-buildings

    If you reference this link you will find an extensive source of information to assist all those looking forward to be able to provide EV charging facilities to the majority of their residents.

    #62551
    Jimmy-T
    Keymaster
    Chat-starter

    You have me at a disadvantage. I thought you were the boss of the strata management firm that blocked the installation.  Apologies for that.  My previous response will be toned down accordingly. And good on you for trying to solve a tricky but ultimately resolvable problem.

    #62552
    Jimmy-T
    Keymaster
    Chat-starter

    I was thrown by the idea of 30-plus gate openers.  I thought it was one gate opener for 30-odd drivers. Even so, there are systems that will direct the power where it’s needed, at any given time, so that even if half a dozen vehicles emerge from their garages at the same time, like a scene from Thunderbirds, the system will temporarily divert the power from the charging vehicles to the gate openers.

    Similarly, if half a dozen cars are being charged and one of them is finished, the system will divert the freed-up power to the other chargers.

    • This reply was modified 2 months, 2 weeks ago by .
    #62554
    Level_one
    Flatchatter

    Thanks for the follow up. We should all be on the same page trying to ensure all Lot Owners have access to EV charging facilities as in the years to come they will all need it.

    We had a situation very similar to the Dr’s in our building where a Lot Owner placed an order for a Tesla with the intention of using the door opener power circuit to charge without seeking any approval. He did then indicate he would be happy to re-imburse an estimate of the power usage but got very little support from the vast majority of Lot Owners to do this.

    I did raise at an OCN webinar whether we could use the A/C compressor power existing in the basement garages for EV Charging and Ross De Rango who was then at NHP picked up on this and developed an EV readiness box that can be used to monitor the load on the relevant circuit and use the power for either the Air Conditioner or EV charging but not both. This box can also be configured for use where the Lot Owners Meter is in the basement garage which may be a more common application. Not sure whether the installation of cable trays though the entire basement might be considered a minor modification to enable these options but some buildings might require the addition of cable trays to comply with AS3000. We now have bylaws in place in our building that enable all Lot Owners to source their own metered power for EV changing providing they have an appropriate interlock/load management module. (approx $1000)

    So the message really is rather than provide a band aid solution that will benefit perhaps a couple of privileged users look at a whole of building solution. It may mean you have to make an annual provision in a capital works program to get there down the track.

    We have had another building in our Community that has made the case that providing EV charging facilities in their building will enhance the value of individual apartments and they have implemented a whole of building solution for an approx cost of $1200 per lot across 30 Apartments where there is currently only one EV user.

    As indicated in other Strata even where an EV charger installation using Lot Owners power has been proposed with all costs  totally paid for by the Lot Owner it has not been able to achieve 50% support at a meeting so education of the uniformed is perhaps the first priority rather than an easy fix.

    Perhaps the new NSW Strata Hub needs to have an indication of whether the Strata is “EV Ready” or not. If this could come in from the 1st of July it might provide an incentive for Strata to be proactive. 

    #62560
    Gerry03
    Flatchatter

    Our strata committee received a request to use a common property power socket to charge a battery for an electric bicycle.

    We were directed to section 117 in the SSMA which allows an owners corporation to enter into an agreement with an occupier for the provision of services.  No special resolution or bylaw is required although we were recommended to carefully document the agreement, including the charges.

    The occupier agreed to install an in-line meter for billing purposes and the strata committee was able to approve the minor works.

    #62562
    Jimmy-T
    Keymaster
    Chat-starter

    Perhaps the new NSW Strata Hub needs to have an indication of whether the Strata is “EV Ready” or not. If this could come in from the 1st of July it might provide an incentive for Strata to be proactive.

    It will be interesting to see what information the strata hub has and doesn’t have (like strata managers’ and committee chairs’ contact details, for instance).

    #62616
    brentclark
    Flatchatter

    An Owners Corporation can enter into an agreement with an Owner or an Occupier of a lot to provide amenity or service to the Owner or Occupier of the lot. This doesn’t require a motion or a by-law. This can include supply of electricity from a general power outlet connected to the common area/houselights meter.

    In the case of a general power outlet on common property (which is not located in a private carparking space/cage or garage), which is not to be changed physically in any way, an end user agreement could be used for cost-recovery by the Owners Corporation where:

    1. the Owner or Occupier supplies at their own cost a temporary $25 plug-in/unplug electricity meter
    2. the Owner commits in the agreement to plugging in the temporary electricity meter for each charging session and then plugging the EV charging cable into the plug-in electricity meter and then unplugging the temporary electricity meter after each charging session
    3. the Owner commits to re-imbursing the Owners Corporation for the kWh consumed in each charging session on a periodic basis e.g. quarterly

    This approach has been used with electric vehicles such as Hyundai Kona’s charging in strata apartment buildings in NSW.

    If the EV in question is a Tesla, then a free third party smartphone application can be used to record the kWh of each charging session to assist with cost-recovery purposes, without the need to even spend $25 on a temporary plug-in power meter.

    #62626
    sleepless in strata
    Flatchatter
    (from NSW)

    At the outset it is important to consider what most owners would want for EV charging both now & into the future & aim to set up accordingly. The committees responsible for navigating this future planning must consider alternatives that are fair &  in the best interests for their building situation.

    A thoughtful approach up front will hopefully prevent pain further down the road.

    Setting up agreements like those suggested requires ongoing management. Who will do this and at what cost?
    Certainly would recommend any agreements made have timeframes written in.

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