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A meter just for the charging circuit?

Discussion in 'Charging and Infrastructure' started by garsh, Feb 10, 2017.

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  1. garsh

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    I'm starting to think about adding a 50 amp circuit and NEMA 14-50 outlet in my garage. I'd like to add some sort of meter just for that circuit, so I can keep track of just the electricity I use to charge my car.

    Ideally, I'd like a box with either an ethernet jack or wifi. Something where I can slurp the data and store it, so I can go back and look at the history.

    I found this article:
    EKM Digital Submeter Measures EV Charging Efficiency
    But the meter it talks about using sounds like it just has a digital readout.

    Alternately, I found this device:
    rainforest automation Eagle Energy Gateway
    Which sounds like it will do all of the networking/cloud stuff that I want, but it talks to your house's smart meter, so it will show usage of the whole house, not just the one circuit.

    Does anybody else have ideas?
     
  2. Badback

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    Like I responded to the other thread on this very subject: https://www.egauge.net/

    I have this device on my solar system. It is easy to install and setup. It generates its own web page and just needs a WiFi or an Ethernet connection to the Internet.
     
  3. KennethK

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    I can't find the other thread... but there is other information there

     
  4. Badback

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    • garsh

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      IIRC, the egauge was ~$500 and supported ~12 circuits, correct?
      Do you have to buy the taps (induction coils, whatever they're called) separately?
      How is historical information stored?
       
    • garsh

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      Another idea, posted by @KennethK in this thread.
      Slickdeals: Aeon Labs Aeotec Z-Wave Smart Energy Meter
      On sale for $17.50 & free shipping.

      Pros:
      • Uses a standard protocol (Z-Wave) for communication with HUBs.
      • Variety of HUBs available,
      • Can be powered via USB or four AA batteries
      • Very inexpensive
      Cons:
      • Not an all-in-one solution. Requires a Z-Wave HUB.
      • Z-Wave is a proprietary (not open) protocol (wikipedia).
      I'd feel better if the protocol were open, but given the proliferation of Z-Wave, I'm less worried about support disappearing anytime soon.

      This is a discontinued model. There is a new version available now.

      I found a thread where people are discussing these devices. TLDR: Not truly accurate. I'm not sure how much I care.

      It's not yet clear to me how I go from having the meter and a hub, and ending up with a website with power usage graphs and historical records.
       
    • garsh

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      #7 garsh, Feb 11, 2017
      Last edited: Feb 11, 2017
      I had some time this morning to also look more closely into @Badback 's suggestion.
      https://www.egauge.net/
      The EG3000 sounds like exactly what I want.
      Pros
      • Built-in webserver
      • Built-in storage for 30 years worth of data!
      • Ability to download data
      • Can measure up to 12 separate lines
      • Actually measures the voltage on each phase in addition to current running through the individually-monitored lines, to get a truly accurate power measurement.
      Cons
      • Price
      The meter costs $494.
      Then you need to buy a current transformer (CT) for each line that you want to measure. For a 240v line, you'll need two CTs. Since I'm not worried about "revenue-grade" accuracy, I can go with the least expensive option. For a 50a line, that would appear to be the JD-SCT-010-0050, which they sell for $35.
      Total price would then be $564.

      That's a lot of money initially, but it sounds like a very nice, expandable system.

      A review from TMC
       
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      • MelindaV

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        There was someone else around here that posted about their setup similar to what you are looking for.... was it @teslaliving ?
         
      • @gravityrydr

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      • @gravityrydr

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        Or as I've seen suggested by Model S users on other thread just use the trip B odometer
        and keep a running total. It would be nice if Tesla would give use a way to pull usage data to feed the nerd in us.
         
      • Badback

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        It would be better to monitor usage at the source, the output of the circuit breaker. This would include losses in the system and might alert you to any dangerous changes, like leakage currents.
         
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        • Matthew Morgan

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          I use an Efergy Engage meter to monitor my whole house usage but the same unit could provide what you are looking for. It has a remote monitoring unit and a separate remote unit that connects it to the internet. However, all the other suggestions here are great as well.
           
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          • KennethK

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            Thanks for the input Matthew. I was looking at that one, but it always helps to hear from someone that has the device.
             
          • @gravityrydr

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            Has anyone used this? Looks promising, but $299 is a lot more than I want to spend.

            https://sense.com

            [​IMG]
             
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            • TrevP

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              How do you like it so far? Looks affordable, does it track things correctly?

              I'm wondering how accurate it would be for tracking a HPWC
               
            • garsh

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              The idea is sound. I used to have a TED-5000G to monitor my whole house, and I was able to recognize some major things, like the dryer. I could easily imagine that a computer could be trained to pick out even more patterns from the overall usage of electricity.
               
            • Matthew Morgan

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              #17 Matthew Morgan, Mar 2, 2017
              Last edited: Mar 2, 2017
              Over the past two years I've had Efergy Engage, it has gotten a lot better. There online portal is awesome and I can pull reports for energy usage every 5 minutes or energy usage over the year.

              For example, for the accuracy question here is the Efergy usage last January vs what my utility reported.

              APS.PNGEfergy.PNG
              For the hourly graph, here is the comparison

              APS Hourly.PNGEfergy Hourly.PNG
              You can notice the refrigerator cycling on and off from 10 AM to 4 PM :)

              Also, when I use a single plug energy use monitor like the Belkin Conserve, I can switch on a 150 watt load and the Belkin Conserve/Efergy Engage will read within a couple watts of each other.

              Real Time usage.PNG
              There are two downfalls in my opinion, one is my own fault and not the fault of the system.
              1. It can't distinguish which way the energy is flowing so when my solar is producing more than my house loads, the Efergy Engage won't tell you that your'e backfeeding. The clamps used for reading the energy flow aren't designed to distinguish direction so not really the fault of the unit. This "fault" of the system is noticeable when you're comparing the graphs above. The Efergy Engage unit will typically report higher usage because of the backfeeding into the grid that happens during the day.
              2. The unit will bottom out at 200 watts meaning it won't tell you if you're total load is 50 watts or 150 watts, it will read out 200 watts for both. However, anything above 200 watts total load is pretty accurate.

              I would definitely purchase again.
               
            • Matthew Morgan

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              If you want to login into the online portal, I can send you my login/password thru private message so you can play around.
               
            • arnis

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              #19 arnis, Mar 6, 2017
              Last edited: Mar 6, 2017
              I've also considered some high tech stuff but after all, graphs are all pointless. Load is stable
              and it lasts as long as charging. Instead of wasting money I just had the most reliable and cheap and effective
              way to count kilowatt-hours for 14€. I even preferred LCD version but guy said that they are not as reliable
              as mechanical versions (no need for flash memory). As I want it to last 5+ years I chose that.
              Simple DIN meter right next to the 16A EVSE breaker. I could have installed that in the EVSE housing but
              the 30m cable between main box and EVSE is not 100% efficient. Therefore the closer to the main power meter the better.
              Meter can be loaded up to 40A. I charge at 16A so definitely not problem.
              I think I will add one more for my house heat pump.
              [​IMG]
               
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              • garsh

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                I've managed to procure two old TED 5000 MTUs and Gateways. I'm going to make use of these.

                Unfortunately, the Footprints software that comes with it is pretty limited. It only shows per-minute data for the last half hour. You can only view historical data at hour granularity. The good news is, the gateway presents a simple web-server interface for obtaining data. I can just send a request to:
                http://<My TED Gateway IP Address>/api/LiveData.xml​
                And it will respond with a nicely-formatted XML page full of the latest data.

                Does anybody know of any software packages that are designed to poll devices for this data, store it, and present a nice interface for examining it? I'd prefer something that runs on Linux.
                 

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