Frequently Asked Questions
EVs offer many advantages. Federal tax credits up to $7,500; less money spent on your total household energy budget; and lower maintenance make them cheaper to own or lease. The cost per mile to drive a typical EV is lower than driving a typical gasoline or diesel-powered vehicle. EVs are quick and fun to drive. They provide environmental benefits such as reduced emissions and noise. EVs can also use high occupancy vehicle lanes with just the driver on board. For those able to charge at home, it is more convenient to charge in your garage than go to a gas station.
Currently, a federal tax credit is allowed for the purchase of NEW qualifying Electric Vehicles. The minimum credit amount is $2,500 and may be up to $7,500 based on each vehicle’s traction battery capacity and the gross vehicle weight rating. The credit will be phased out for each manufacturer in which a minimum of 200,000 qualified Plug-in Electric Vehicles (PEVs) have been sold by that manufacturer for use in the United States. Tesla is one example that has reached the cap and is no longer eligible for the credit.
For more details on federal & state incentives, please visit the U.S. Department of Energy web site at https://afdc.energy.gov/laws or call (877) 337-3463 or visit the Hawaii State Energy Office web site. Consult your personal financial advisor or tax preparer if you have questions.
Hawaii Energy is administrating a rebate for dual-port networked Level 2 charging stations and DC fast charge stations. These types of charging stations are commonly used in commercial buildings or multi-family dwellings.
EVSE installed before the end of 2020 are eligible for a federal tax incentive for 30% of the cost up to $1000. General information can be found here: Tax credit for 30% of the cost up to $1000 extended retroactively for charging stations installed January 1, 2017 – December 31, 2020.
Smart Charge Hawaii program is offering discounts on the purchase of a smart charging station from EnelX through the end of 2021.
Find Hawaii dealerships with Certified EV Experts for details about the EV you are interested in for vehicle pricing, batteries, charging specifications, safety, special programs, and other details. There are also links various resources on our "Resources" page such as the Consumer Guide to Electric Vehicles.
If you are thinking of purchasing an EV, start by understanding the difference between a hybrid, plug-in hybrid and battery electric vehicle. Each has advantages and disadvantages, so it's important to find the one that fits your lifestyle. Things to consider are the distance of your commute and how you will charge the vehicle.
Several charging options are available. In some cases, a simple 120-volt Level 1 plug-and-cord set using a standard outlet may be all you require. In other cases, you may want to purchase a faster Level 2 charger. Your EV dealer or manufacturer can help you make this decision and your EV may come with a Level 1 or Level 2 charging cord. If you choose to install a Level 2 charging station, consult a licensed electrical contractor. As with all electrical upgrades, your county building department must approve plans and sign off when the installation is complete. More information on these topics is on our "Electric Vehicle Basics" page.
For residential service, Hawaiian Electric can only provide necessary service on the utility side of the meter. Please consult a licensed electrician for additional electrical work. Consider requesting quotes from a few electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) installers. Hawaii Energy’s Clean Energy Allies list is one resource that can help you find local installers.
Under a pilot project, Hawaiian Electric has installed public DC fast charging stations at publicly accessible sites which may best assist EV drivers and the commercial site. Interested commercial customers should contact the GoEV program at GoEV@hawaiianelectric.com or 808-543-GoEV (4638).
Any business can provide charging to customers or employees for a fee or as a service. If your business wishes to do so, please consult a licensed electrical contractor or contact the GoEV program at GoEV@hawaiianelectric.com or 808-543-GoEV (4638). Hawaiian Electric does not need to be involved unless you require a new or upgraded electrical service. Your licensed electrical contractor will know if Hawaiian Electric needs to be involved.
Yes, enrolling on a TOU rate does not change your NEM status. Any excess power you send from your renewable energy installation (like solar panels) will be credited to your account at the same rate you would pay if you took power from the grid at that time. Customers providing excess power under the mid-day TOU-RI will be credited at the lower Mid-Day rate. In addition, any power taken from the grid between 5-10 PM can draw from those credits, but it will be at the higher peak TOU-RI rate.
If you enroll in TOU-RI for the household (Whole-House TOU-RI), Hawaiian Electric will replace your existing meter with a time-of-use meter at NO charge.
Under TOU-RI, there is no additional fee for residential customers adding a second meter for EV charging only (Separately Metered TOU-RI). Customers without a utility bill (such as tenants of a master metered condominium) may install a new metered service for EV charging only at their place of residence. These customers will be subject to a $11.50 monthly customer charge for this new account. Customers pay for all electric upgrades (if needed), and Hawaiian Electric will install a new time-of-use meter at NO charge.