Study finds nearly a quarter of electric car-charging stations were non-functioning in Bay area

A recently published study found that over 27 percent of electric vehicle charging stations in San Francisco were not working as intended. This comes at a time when gas prices are at an all-time high in many states and the Biden administration has been encouraging consumers to switch to electric vehicles in their hesitancy to expand fossil fuel production.

The study was conducted by a retired bioengineering professor at the University of California Berkeley, David Rempel, along with the help of volunteers from Cool the Earth, a non-profit dedicated to reducing global carbon emissions. To assess the reliability of public electric vehicle charging stations, Rempel and his team evaluated 181 public charging stations around the city which contain a total of 657 charging plugins.

It was found that 22.7% of electric vehicle plugins were non-functioning or unresponsive due to blank screens, payment system failures, network failures and broken charging connectors. For a charging station to be evaluated as functional, it had to charge a vehicle for 2 minutes or must already be in use by a customer.

The team even included a second evaluation where 10% of the unresponsive charging stations were re-visited for a second test 8 days after the initial study was conducted, and no change in functionality was observed. Another 4.9% of electric vehicle charging stations had to be classed as inoperable simply due to the charging cable being too short to connect to the vehicle.

The data on charging station functionality in the study, called the Reliability of Open Public Electric Vehicle Direct Current Fast Chargers, conflicted greatly with the reports from the electric vehicle service providers which estimate an uptime of 95 to 98%. Due to this alarming discrepancy in data, Rempel concluded that “The findings suggest a need for shared, precise definitions of and calculations for reliability, uptime, downtime, and excluded time, as applied to open public DCFCs [direct current fast chargers], with verification by third-party evaluation.”

Dave Rempel told the San Francisco Chronicle that there is one option if a charging station is not functional as customers can call a support number to bring the charging station back online, but that can add another 10 to 20 minutes to the process.

“That shouldn’t be the case,” he said.

The state is “is committed to and investing in improving charging access and reliability, and working with the charging industry, automakers, standards organizations, community organizations and other stakeholders,” the California Energy Commission (CEC) told Fox Business.

The CEC also said it’s working with other state agencies to “improve the customer experience at charging stations and increase access, especially for lower-income and disadvantaged communities.”

It’s important to note that Tesla charging stations were excluded from the study.


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12 thoughts on “Study finds nearly a quarter of electric car-charging stations were non-functioning in Bay area

  1. I don’t think it’s the not the only thing non functioning in the Bay Area!

  2. Once owned a dual tank pickup truck. Each tank held 26 gallons. I could go a month on one 15 minute fill up. How long will it take an EV to give me more than 600 miles? Even if charging stations are working as we are told they are supposed to work?
    MY time is worth something.
    So is YOURS.

  3. Not to worry, Nancy will get the funds from Joey’s 1.9 TRILLION dollar Waste as much money as we can infrastructure boondoggle, 19 stupid Republicans helped pass. Soon there will be free charging stations for every wealthy Democratic donor in the bay area. Nancy knows how to take care of her own.

  4. Which is only 1/4 of the number of non functioning dem officials in California!

  5. The best part is it is more expensive to drive an electric car in California than it is to drive a gasoline powered car. And if the people of California thought blackouts were bad before, wait until there are more electric cars using up the capacities of the grid. They will have the choice of hot water or charging their car from coal burning power plants. They can’t do both. There is not enough power available. FJB

  6. Add to that is California has no more available power, my county (Humboldt) just told anyone trying to get a new power hook up to the grid not possible no more power to be had! Asked when a hook up would be available and was told between 5 and 10 years! Southern California just said they are having problems finding enough power for the power needs it already has… Where do they think millions of cars are going to be charged? This fantasy. I wish I wish will not make this happen! Bring back our fossil fuel! Today a gallon of regular is $6.29 gallon diesel is $6.99! And for what more libturd agendas!

  7. “estimate an uptime of 95 to 98%.”

    95 to 98% or 73% or lower? Close enough for government work.

  8. WTF do the underserved communities( big scumRat cities) need charging station for, the poorest communities cannot afford a regular car much less an electric car,,,just another way for the scumRats to steal more taxpayers monies,,,,,,,FJB,,,,

  9. The CEC also said it’s working with other state agencies to “improve the customer experience at charging stations and increase access, especially for lower-income and disadvantaged communities.”

    Well, maybe I’m not 100% up to date on things, but are there a lot of these expensive EVs in lower income and disadvantaged communities? Or is this just another ridiculous talking point in the name of equality and fairness?

    1. Talking points. Bay area is not cheap, no such thing as low-income unless you count the homeless camps who don’t own cars, let alone EVs.

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