Plug Share
(click to enlarge)
Even More
Motel Chargers

In My Area

July 26, 2022

Mark D Larsen

Several years ago I posted a webpage about the electric vehicle chargers that Tesla had installed at the 3 Best Western Motels in St. George. Four years later I posted an update to show additional charging stations installed at other motels. It’s now been nearly three years since that post, and there are a half-dozen more locations where EV drivers can plug in around the St. George community, not far from the I-15 freeway. This map shows where they are located, with numbers that corresponding to the descriptions that I provide below.

PlugShare Map

NOTE: You can click on any of the following photos to enlarge them.

1. Comfort Suites
175 North 1000 East
St. George, UT 84770

The Comfort Suites is a fairly new motel which has two EVSE chargers along the front of the building, to the left of the entrance. Unfortunately, their spaces are not designated for EV parking, and it wouldn't surprise me if they ended up ICE'd by other guests.

These 7kW chargers are from a new provider that I had never heard of before: Noodoe EV. Unlike other motel chargers that I have reported on in my earlier posts, this company charges motel guests to plug in.

To access the service, you have to use your phone with the code on the small viewscreen. Unfortunately, the sun has baked the screens so badly that the code is hardly visible. Noodoe has thus also mounted a copy of the code on the side of the unit. It opens the company's website library where you can access its apps, and also see the prices above. You can apparently also use a charge card, Apple Pay, and Google Pay to start a charging session.

I was surprised to see that the rates were based on length of time connected rather than the more normal kWh used. I decided to get out my calculator and try to determine an estimate of what a motel guest might expect to pay for this service. Let’s say, for instance, that you’re on a roadtrip, the last time you charged was in Las Vegas, and you decide to check in to this motel overnight. I know from experience that you would have driven about 130 miles, using an average of 35 kWh to arrive at this location. If you plug in according to these rates, it would take nearly 6 hours to recuperate those miles and kWh.
(4 initial hours x $2/hr = $8) + (2 subsequent hours x $4/hr = $8) = $16 total charge
This, of course, assumes that the fee for subsequent hours stops when your EV has finished charging. I would hope that you wouldn’t have to also pay for remaining connected even though you’re no longer charging! If so, you’d have to get up in the middle of the night to go unplug your car!

2. SpringHill Suites by Marriott
122 North Green Spring Drive
Washington, UT 84780

The Springhill Suites truly is a brand new motel, which boasts four EVSEs in the parking lot in the front of the building. In this case the spots are marked for EV charging.

Once again, these are Noodoe chargers, two of them mounted side-by-side on each of the two poles. The code to access the app webpage is more visible on these units, right next to the barely readable screen. I would assume that customers would have to pay the same rates as at the Comfort Inn above.

Curiously, when I visited the site there was only one vehicle using an EVSE, a plug-in hybrid Jeep on a roadtrip from California.

Since the miles and kWh to reach this motel from Las Vegas would be about the same, I would again estimate that a guest would also have to pay about $16 to charge overnight.

3. WalMart Supercenter
625 West Telegraph Street
Washington, UT 84780

I have driven by this Walmart Supercenter many times, but only recently did I notice that Electrify America has installed four DC Fast Chargers in the parking lot near the entrance. It had been 5 years since the first DCFC was installed in this area, and I was happy to finally see more of them.

Three of these units sport dual CCS plugs touting a 350kW capacity. The fourth one, however, had one CCS plug rated at 150kW and one CHAdeMO plug limited to 50 kW. Unfortunately, none of the 350kW chargers were working! While I was there, several EV drivers stopped to plug in, discovered that the units wouldn't connect, and then left in an angry huff. Not a good sign!

The only service that was working was the 150kW CCS, where a Mustang Mach-E from Arizona was plugged in, yet the screen showed that the unit was only producing 30kW of power!

The woman in the Mach-E was frustrated, to say the least, as she was only trying to increase the 30 kWh in her battery to 40 kWh, so that she could continue her roadtrip to Cedar City and plug in there. We chatted for about 20 minutes, and by the time I left she had reached 39%. I felt bad for her, and all the other EV owners who attempted to recharge there that day, including one woman in a Nissan LEAF who had hoped to use the sole CHAdeMO plug, but couldn’t do so while the Mach-E was using the CCS plug.

IF (a big “if”) the 350kW chargers were working, and an EV could handle that much power, I estimate that it should take only 20 minutes to restore the miles and kWh used on a drive here from Las Vegas. As for the cost, the rates to plug into these DC Fast Chargers depend on whether one is a guest using a “Free Pass” (43¢/kWh) or is a “Pass +” member (31¢/kWh plus a $4/month fee). Again using my parameters for driving an EV here from Las Vegas, these are my estimates:

“Free Pass”: 35 kWh x 43¢/kWh = $15.05 total charge
“Pass +”: 35 kWh x 31¢/kWh = $10.85 total charge
(plus a monthly fee of $4.00)
It is very clear to me that these DCFC providers really do need to up their game and install reliable equipment, and be prepared to service them immediately if there is a breakdown, for there is a growing number of electric vehicles on the horizon and I would hate to see the movement fail because of such third-party negligence.

Addendum: To be fair, I should add that, two days later, these Electrify America DCFC units were again working, but not a full capacity due to the heat. According to one owner who was charging, apparently EA had reset their software via the internet. I happened to see a Hyundai Ioniq 5 plugged in there, and the screen showed that it had taken 34 minutes to deliver 38 kWh and reach 80% after arriving with 34%, for a cost of $15.91. Not Supercharger speed, but not bad at all!

4. Ramada by Wyndam
1440 East St George Boulevard
St. George, UT 84790

This Ramada Inn isn't particularly new, but only recently has it starting offering EVSE charging for its guests. The four spots were marked, though not very clearly. My guess is that Noodoe EV had apparently approached the Ramada when arranging to install its chargers at the Comfort Suites and SpringHill Suites above, targeting motels that were close to the I-15 freeway.

I would also imagine that they have arranged with the Ramada to facilitate NooDoe’s very same connection requirements and payments, charging travelers from Las Vegas about $16 to plug in overnight. Having never heard of this company before, I can't help but wonder how many other EV charging startups are now trying to get some skin-in-the-game…?

5. St. George Regional Hospital
2557 East 1480 South
St. George, UT 84790

Since moving to this area, we have gone to the St. George Hospital numerous times through the years for appointments, lab tests, emergencies, even surgeries. It was only recently, however, that they decided to put in some EVSEs for patients to use when visiting their facilities. There are four plugs on two poles to the west of the Women's Complex of the hospital, but the spaces are not marked for EV use only.

These 6.3kW charging stations are from ChargePoint, a provider that I know very well, having plugged my previous Nissan LEAF into them many times when in Las Vegas for National Drive Electric Week. Best of all, patients can plug into these stations free-of-charge, a nice courtesy of the hospital and ChargePoint.

Having EVSEs at this hospital makes perfect sense. After all, it serves patients from not only the immediate area, but also outlying communities that are one or even two hours away. For example, if EV owners from the towns of Virgin, Springdale, Kanarraville, or Mesquite, NV, had to drive there for appointments, plugging in for an hour would restore the miles and kWh from their 40-mile journey. And if someone from Kanab had to have outpatient surgery, it would take about 2 hours to recharge their EV for the 80-mile trip home.

6. Dixie Power
120 Sugar Leo Road
St. George, UT 84790

Unlike most of Utah, St. George has its own electric utility company, Dixie Power. The utility has installed two ChargePoint DC Fast Chargers to the rear of their main building, each one with plugs for both CHAdeMO and CCS. The four parking spaces in front of them are designated with signs for “electric vehicles only.”

These units are capable of generating 62.5 kWh, although I would bet that the CHAdeMO plug would be limited to 50 kWh. They are obviously not as fast as the 350 kWh Electrify America chargers up above, but at least these are working just fine! I was perplexed that the frustrated EV owners at Walmart hadn't then gone here to recharge, but I remembered that they probably received a couple of years of "free" charging when they bought their EVs, and prefer to use that perk rather than paying for a fast charge here.

The rates quoted by Dixie Power were 50¢/kWh plus 8¢/minute for parking. This seems rather odd to me, but I again got out my calculator to estimate what a traveler from Las Vegas would end up paying. The charge would be the highest in the area, but still less than the $12 or $13 one would likely pay at our local Tesla Superchargers. And because of the lower charging rate, it might take as many as 40 minutes to replenish the kWh and miles driven.

(35 kWh x 50¢/kWh = $17.50) + (40 minutes x 8¢/min = $3.20) = $20.70 total charge
Dixie Power has some of the lowest electricity rates in the nation, much lower than what Rocky Mountain Power charges most Utahns. For example, its residential rate is approximately 7.25¢ per kWh. Since they can actually make a profit off of such a rock bottom rate, what it costs them to produce the electricity must be very low indeed. I can therefore well imagine that they’re making quite a nice profit off of EV drivers who plug into their ChargePoint DCFC stations.

While I’m glad to see more charging stations in our community, I am worried about how providers are going about offering those services. Perhaps I’m just too accustomed to Destination Chargers like the ones I helped install in my suburb, which are free to the public. It thus irks me to now see motels charging guests to plug in for a lowly Level 2 charge in their parking lots. I am also concerned to see that DC Fast Chargers have prices notably higher than at Superchargers, and even moreso that these third-party stations are breaking down so frequently. If we really are going to make the transition to electric vehicles to help mitigate the climate crisis, we have to do better than this. Otherwise, we’re cutting off our nozzle to spite our plug.