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240v through the 5-15 plug?

Discussion in 'Model S: Battery & Charging' started by Electric Joe, Feb 2, 2017.

  1. Electric Joe

    Electric Joe Member

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    Does anyone know what happens if you use both flat prongs of the Tesla NEMA 5-15 plug adapter with hot wires to effectively send 240v through the UMC? I'm too chicken to try it. I figure the UMC might see the 240v and use it at up to 15 amps, or it might self-destruct because it was expecting only 120v since the 5-15 adapter was detected.

    I ask because I have access to a 240v low amp outlet at work and I'm wondering if I can make a simple adapter that the UMC's 5-15 would plug into.
     
  2. Sparky

    Sparky Member

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    #2 Sparky, Feb 2, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2017
    It sounds like you want a 6-15 adapter, which Tesla sells. If so, I recommend buying that.
    Then, you should be able to pull 12A at 240V.
    However, I've successfully used a Tesla NEMA 5-20 adapter (one sideways plug) in a 240V NEMA 240 20A outlet (6-20?). It was a garage outlet that has a whole-house vacuum which runs on 240V.
    The Tesla EVSE seems to only care about current limits for the particular adapter not the 120 or 240 voltage. I used the 5-20 since I couldn't get a 6-20 at the time and I wanted the current to limit at 16A max.
     
  3. davewill

    davewill Member

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    It will work fine with the car pulling 12a @ 240V. The 6-15 adapter is available and would be better choice to accomplish the same thing. Some people use the 5-20 adapter at 240v as that is the only path to getting 16a @ 240v.
     
  4. Barry

    Barry Active Member

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    Bad idea to use a 5-15. Bad stuff can happen by accident. Reminds me of a trip to eastern Europe about 15 years ago where I saw the standard, round prong, 240VAC connector being used for headphones! :eek:
     
  5. SomeJoe7777

    SomeJoe7777 Marginally-Known Member

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    The UMC will have no problem with it, but 5-15 outlets aren't tested or rated for 240V. Could be a hazard. And it's not code-compliant, of course.

    Like others have said, better to use a 6-15 outlet and adapter.
     
  6. ⚡️ELECTROMAN⚡️

    ⚡️ELECTROMAN⚡️ Fritterer and waster of hours in an off hand wayer

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    I would strongly suggest you get the proper adapter. They are only $45. It's not like the parts to build an adapter are free. I'm an electrician and I have the spare parts lying around collecting dust. I was going to make a 6-15 adapter that the 14-50 Tesla adapter can plug into. That way I can set the charging amperage to 12A for a 6-15 outlet and 16A if I'm plugging into a 6-20 outlet. I'm only making the adapter to have on hand for very rare occasions. That sounds a little sketchy to use the 5-15 for 240 volts, though. I would buy the proper adapter from Tesla if I was going to be using it on a daily basis. Especially if I was plugging into an outlet at work.
     
  7. miimura

    miimura Active Member

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    Overseas, I have seen regular 5-15 type outlets labeled as 240V and it frankly scares me. There is a reason that we have sockets that mechanically differentiate for voltage.

    Any home-made adapter that adapts one socket to another like 6-20 to 5-20 should be clearly labeled and kept in the car when not in use. Since there is a Tesla adapter for 6-15, it should be used with a proper 6-15 socket instead of re-wiring a 5-15 socket to 240V or using a third party or home-made adapter.
     
  8. n2mb_racing

    n2mb_racing Member

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    Here you go, easiest option:
    Tesla — NEMA 6-15

    Though, you can get slightly faster charging (11 mi / hr vs 8 mi / hr) and about 3% higher charging efficiency by charging at 240V @ 16A using the NEMA 5-20 UMC adapter, but then you'd have to make a custom adapter.
     

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