Meet Henry: The Tesla driver who cut his charging costs and environmental impact with solar panels

March 3, 2023
James Pratley

When Henry moved to a new neighbourhood, he realised that he was missing out. 

25% of his neighbours had solar panels installed and - as energy prices jumped - they were enjoying cheaper energy bills and greater energy independence by harnessing California's abundant sunshine.

With a newborn child, Henry realised he could spend his money in far better ways than on his energy bills.

For him, this just wouldn’t do.

Taking action

Henry and his wife Sharon are extremely conscious of their impact on the environment - especially as new parents. 

Sharon is trying to live sustainably by composting, reducing and recycling as much as possible.

Solar panels felt like a great way for Henry to help play his part.

Saving money was also an important factor, and he knew that solar panels could help lower his monthly bills.

As a software engineer, he took a methodical approach to his research; carefully calculating the best way to make a return on his investment and reduce carbon emissions within his means.

He got quotes from several providers, and ultimately chose Tesla Solar for its great price and quality.

“Solar has been great! Finally, I can use my panels to charge up my Tesla and I don’t even have to do anything. The app just takes care of it all. I love seeing how much I’m saving each month”.

Going all-electric

Purchasing a Tesla vehicle was the natural next step in Henry’s mission.

Henry opted for a Model Y, which provided the extra space he needed for his family in the years to come.

Best of all, he could use the battery to capture his solar generation at home.

Henry with his Tesla on a sunny day in California

Now he had all the parts to achieve his goal of offsetting his energy usage, which ultimately served his ambition to be greener and reduce costs in order to support his family.

But, annoyingly, Henry found that he wasn’t soaking up all of the power that his solar panels were generating, which was increasing his payback period.

A perfect coincidence

Henry started following Tesla Owners of Silicon Valley - California’s biggest car club - to get the latest updates, hints and tricks for his Tesla.

When he heard about an event at the nearby Tanforan Mall, he thought it may be worthwhile, so he went along.

That’s where Henry found and downloaded the app.

He wasn’t sure what to expect but quickly realised that the app was able to save him a lot of money.

Henry simply connected his Tesla Model Y through a secure login, added his energy rate details, and told the app when he needed his car ready by each day.

He watched the savings roll in.

“If it’s saving me money, it’s good. Right?”

But, Henry’s interest really piqued when he found the Solar Charging feature.

Tesla Owners Silicon Valley event, where Henry found the app

Meant to be

Finally! Henry now had a way to capture 100% of his excess solar generation and route it into his Tesla.

Best of all - he didn’t have to purchase any additional hardware. The app would automatically optimize every charge for him.

This allowed Henry to always get the cheapest and greenest charge for his Tesla. All he had to do was plug his vehicle in when he got home, as usual.

As Henry only drives the car a few days per week for work, grocery shopping and family trips, there are many hours each week when it’s parked up, plugged in and able to recharge with solar power.

Henry is now seeing significant savings on his energy bills every month.

“The fact that it’s software makes it smooth and simple. My favourite part is the stats page, where I can see how much I’ve saved quickly”.

Thinking ahead

Henry’s clean energy journey isn’t over just yet.

He is hoping to change his second car to an electric vehicle when he can, and he’s also considering a heat pump. 

By going 100% electric, Henry knows he’ll have a lot more control, allowing him to reduce his imports from the energy grid even further.

“I want to offset everything”, he says.

Ready to drive on sunshine?

Want to save money and carbon on your own EV charging costs? 

Download the app to get started for free today or check out our savings calculator to see how much you could save.

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