Energy Support

Utility Rate Plans

The Tesla app allows you to add your utility rate plan for more accurate value calculation estimates and system optimization. Rate plans, also known as utility tariffs or your price of energy, generally determine how much you pay for your electricity from a utility. One of the benefits of a Tesla solar system is reduced energy consumption from the grid, resulting in lower utility bills. Having an accurate rate plan helps your Tesla solar system to maximize savings.

Mobile App Features

The Time-Based Control feature uses your rate plan and machine learning to optimize how your Powerwall charges and discharges. This helps maximize the value of energy generation and lower the cost of energy consumption, often referred to as load shifting.

The Solar and Energy Value cards estimate the amount of energy generated by your solar system. These values are calculated based on the time of day and amount of solar generation, energy consumption and energy exported to the grid, in addition to value generated by load shifting.

Setting Up Your Rate Plan from List

We support a comprehensive list of predefined rate plans for utilities in the United States. To confirm your rate plan, check your utility bill, utility website or call your utility provider for assistance.

Step 1: From the home screen, open the ‘Settings’ menu.

Step 2: Tap ‘Utility Rate Plan.’

Step 3: Tap ‘Start,’ or if your system already has a rate plan, tap ‘Start Over.’

Step 4: Select your ‘State.’

Step 5: Select your ‘Utility.’

Step 6: Select your ‘Rate Plan,’ and then tap ‘Save.’

Note: If we do not have your rate plan on file, we will continue to add support for more rate plans over time. For California customers, learn more about the Net Billing Tariff and if it applies to you.

Custom Rate Plans

If we currently do not support your rate plan, you can build a custom rate plan in Tesla app. Elements of a custom rate are outlined in the table below:

Flat Rate Some rate plans may use flat rates, where the cost of your energy does not change based on the time of day.
Time Periods Your utility energy price differs throughout the day based on energy supply and demand. Periods are typically referred to as "Off-Peak," "Super Off-Peak" (lower-priced periods with lower energy demand), "Peak" or "Mid-Peak" (higher-priced periods with higher energy demand).
Seasons Utilities may adjust energy pricing across seasons to account for energy supply and demand shifts.
Weekends Some rate plans may have special weekend schedules, such as a “Super Off-Peak” period, used when energy is at the lowest demand during the week. Weekends refer to Saturday and Sunday.
Pricing Your rate will have the cost of importing (buying) or exporting (selling) energy.
Net Energy Metering Net Energy Metering (NEM) is a type of plan which allows you to offset your grid usage with energy produced by your solar system. Typically, NEM plans have similar pricing for buying and selling energy, but some plans may have a small difference between buying and selling energy.
Feed-in Tariff A feed-in tariff (FIT) is an element of a rate plan for selling excess solar energy back to the grid at a flat rate, often at a lower value than the cost of buying energy. If you have a FIT, you can set it in the ‘Sell’ price of your rate plan.

Setting Up a Custom Rate Plan

Step 1: From the home screen, open the ‘Settings’ menu.

Step 2: Tap ‘Utility Rate Plan.’

Step 3: Tap ‘Start,’ or if your system already has a rate plan, tap ‘Start Over.’

Step 4: Tap ‘More Options.’

Step 5: Tap ‘Custom Rate Plan.’

Step 6: Enter your ‘Utility Provider’ name and ‘Rate Plan’ name.

Step 7: Select either ‘Time of Use’ or ‘Seasons’ depending on your rate pricing structure.

Step 8: If your rate uses ‘Time of Use,’ tap ‘rate periods’ and drag the slider to edit time periods. Tap ‘Add Time Period’ to add a new period. Multiple peak periods are supported. Repeat this step for weekends.

Step 9: If your rate uses ‘Seasons,’ set your season using the handles. Use ‘+’ or ‘–‘ to remove Seasons. Up to three seasons are currently supported. Enter the ‘rate pricing’ for this season. You can set a unique ‘buy’ and ‘sell’ price for each time period, depending on your rate plan.

Step 10: Repeat steps 8 and 9 to account for all time periods and seasons.

Step 11: Review the summary screen, and then tap ‘Save.’

Feature Availability

Adding a rate plan, viewing Solar and Energy Value cards and using Time-Based Control for rate plans requires Tesla app version 4.2.0 or later. Additionally, some rate plans have elements that require Powerwall Firmware 21.39.

Net Billing Tariff (NBT)

Some of California’s largest utility companies will be billing customers under NBT (Net Billing Tariff, also referred to as NEM 3.0 or Solar Billing Plan). Customers can now select the NBT rate plan in the Tesla app. Check with your utility if you are on NBT. If so, follow this process to select NBT as your utility rate. When reviewing your NBT rate plan, you can press and hold the chart to see different import and export rates by time period.

Powerwall’s intelligent, customizable software is designed to maximize your Powerwall’s value by leveraging peak hours when credit rates are more favorable than the lowest export prices. This approach is designed to produce the most optimal return from your Powerwall. Learn more about Tesla’s solution to NBT.

Note: NBT rates are not able to be edited or customized. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Utility Rate Plans

How can I check if I have the rate plan features in the Tesla app?

On the ‘Settings’ menu of the app, if you see a dedicated ‘Utility Rate Plan’ section, your home has access to the rate plan features. Conversely, your rate plan selection will disappear from the Time-Based Control section, as full rate plans support is a core feature for Powerwall, across the app and system behavior.

If I change my rate plan in the Tesla app, does that change my utility bill?

Changing your rate plan in the Tesla app does not change your rate plan with your utility. Contact your utility if you wish to switch to a new rate. Similarly, switching your rate plan with your utility does not automatically update the rate plan in your Tesla app.

Can I edit my rate plan to find additional savings with my utility?

You can edit your rate plan in-app to estimate potential value changes when you change your rate plan with your utility. Some utility rates available to select in-app may have additional qualifications that your utility requires, such as EV or medical rates. Remember to return to your original settings afterward.

How accurate is Solar Value and Energy Value?

While we expect these values to be fairly accurate, all values presented in the Tesla app are estimates, not guarantees. These values may vary from other calculations, such as those in your utility bill, for several reasons. These may include factors like aggregation, taxes and local fees, meter inaccuracies, data gaps, energy usage, non-bypassable charges, transmission or service fees, rounding, etc.

Why did my Powerwall reduce charging and discharging during the winter?

In Time-Based Control, Powerwall uses your rate plan to optimize for economic value generation. In the winter, some time-of-use plans have too similar prices during off-peak and peak periods to economically load-shift, so you may see reduced daily use of your Powerwall. If you prefer to maximize the daily use of your Powerwall, consider switching your home to Self-Powered mode, with a higher backup reserve to account for seasonal reduction in solar production.

Can I edit rate plans to change the behavior of Time-Based Control?

Yes, you can edit buy and sell prices to influence the behavior of Time-Based Control, but doing so may cause unexpected behavior, reduce the economic value of your system and reduce the accuracy of your Energy Value card. We strongly advise that you only build rate plans which closely match your utility rate. For example, lowering the sell price of energy in your rate plan during off-peak can discourage Powerwall from exporting excess solar, where possible.

Does Powerwall support tiered rates?

Some rate plans use baseline or tiered rate elements. Tesla does not support rate plans with these elements at this time. As part of getting solar, your utility may have changed your rate plan from a fixed rate or tiered rate to a time-of-use rate plan — confirming your rate with your utility is recommended.

When will my Powerwall get support for rate plan features and Solar and Energy Value cards?

These features are being released on a routine basis as we monitor performance and make adjustments to improve accuracy. As with other software updates, availability of these app features may vary, with a phased user rollout.

I just updated my rate plans in-app, but I didn’t see Power Flow change?

It may take up to 15 minutes when your system is in Time-Based Control for you to notice system behavior changes as a result of updating your rate plan.

My rate plan or utility is not available on the list — how do I set up my rate plan?

Set up a custom rate plan, using information from your utility website. We plan to add more rate plans over time.

Does Utility Rate Plans support Tesla Electric?

Tesla has drawn from our deep expertise in energy markets to develop Tesla Electric, a retail electricity provider that allows you reduce your utility bill while supporting your community with clean energy. Currently available in Texas, Tesla Electric also allows you to monitor what rates you will pay when you consume electricity and when you export power to the grid. These rates will automatically be configured when you enroll in Tesla Electric as Tesla keeps your utility rate up to date for you.