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Concerns about Tesla to non-Tesla charging adapters

TEG

Teslafanatic
Aug 20, 2006
21,945
9,124
Much of the discussion in this forum is technical in nature, but we keep bumping up against questions of 'fairness' and even 'legality' when discussing various adapters that could allow a Tesla vehicle to charge at non Tesla charging stations, or a non-Tesla vehicle to charge at a Tesla charging station.

Tesla offers adapters so that Model S & X can charge at Non-Tesla charging locations.

Such as CHAdeMO adapter to use CHAdeMO DC quick/charge stations at places like Nissan dealerships.
chad1.png


And a J1772 adapter to do lower speed AC charging at places like Nissan dealerships and public charging locations.
attachment.php?attachmentid=24263.jpg


For the sake of argument, let's assume that these adapters are safe, and only being used when the Tesla driver has permission from the owner of the station to use it.

Would it then be "fair" to think that a Nissan LEAF driver should/could have an opportunity to charge at Tesla HPWCs, or Superchargers if they got permission from the owner of the station?

I have seen comments like "that would be stealing since Tesla paid for the charging equipment and the power."
And "it wouldn't be safe since a car like the LEAF can't handle the power levels of something like a Model S."
And "Tesla has not approved their equipment for use by other makes of vehicles, so it isn't allowed."

Tesla chose to make a proprietary connector on their charging equipment, so that non-Tesla vehicles cannot plug-in.
Attempts to make adapters to the Tesla connector have been controversial.

I am starting this thread to collect up many of those comments that ended up in other threads.


Some related threads:

Supercharger to Chademo Adapter?

HPWC to J1772 adaptor

Photo evidence - Tesla Adapter to J-Plug-on-a-Mercedes-B-Class-EV

Overloading-a-NISSAN-EVSE-with-a-Roadster-UMC
 
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AmpedRealtor

Well-Known Member
Jun 30, 2013
6,414
4,098
Phoenix, AZ
It makes total sense to have a Tesla-to-J1772 adapter. This will allow all of the facilities with HPWC destination chargers to be used with J1772 capable vehicles. It also gives a two EV household with a Tesla the ability to charge the non-Tesla using the HPWC.
 

TexasEV

Well-Known Member
Jun 5, 2013
7,650
8,911
Austin, TX
It makes total sense to have a Tesla-to-J1772 adapter. This will allow all of the facilities with HPWC destination chargers to be used with J1772 capable vehicles. It also gives a two EV household with a Tesla the ability to charge the non-Tesla using the HPWC.
I don't know that Tesla would want HPWC destination chargers to be used with J1772 capable vehicles. One of the marketing benefits of giving them away to hotels, etc. was for guests to see Teslas being charged there. Not Leafs or i3s or whatever.
 

AmpedRealtor

Well-Known Member
Jun 30, 2013
6,414
4,098
Phoenix, AZ
I don't know that Tesla would want HPWC destination chargers to be used with J1772 capable vehicles. One of the marketing benefits of giving them away to hotels, etc. was for guests to see Teslas being charged there. Not Leafs or i3s or whatever.

This is just my opinion, but that doesn't seem very friendly or inviting. If a HPWC is just sitting there, why can't it be used to charge a Leaf or an i3? The idea is the more the merrier, right?
 

Larry Chanin

President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts
Aug 22, 2011
4,937
805
Sarasota, Florida
I don't know that Tesla would want HPWC destination chargers to be used with J1772 capable vehicles. One of the marketing benefits of giving them away to hotels, etc. was for guests to see Teslas being charged there. Not Leafs or i3s or whatever.

This is just my opinion, but that doesn't seem very friendly or inviting. If a HPWC is just sitting there, why can't it be used to charge a Leaf or an i3? The idea is the more the merrier, right?

It is my understanding that at some qualifying host locations the preferred practice has been for Tesla to donate J1772 chargers to accommodate other EVs. This arrangement is superior in that it doesn't inconvenience Tesla owners waiting for a VOLT to sip electrons at 3.3 kW on a 20 kW HPWC.

Larry
 

TexasEV

Well-Known Member
Jun 5, 2013
7,650
8,911
Austin, TX
This is just my opinion, but that doesn't seem very friendly or inviting. If a HPWC is just sitting there, why can't it be used to charge a Leaf or an i3? The idea is the more the merrier, right?
But why do you think it would just be sitting there? It would probably be taken by a PiP or something almost as useless, then how would you feel if you chose to stay at that hotel because it had Tesla destination charging?
 
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patrick42h

Member
May 20, 2014
134
44
Indianapolis
If Tesla wanted to make sure that an adapter like this couldn't be created, they should not have chosen the J1772 protocol for AC charging. I don't see what the big deal is. It's basically an inversion of the J1772 adapter that comes with the Model S. I am amazed that it didn't happen sooner.
 
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stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
10,998
6,112
Henry Sharp already makes a Model S (female) to Roadster (male) adapter that works quite well. I have one for my Roadster. No one seems to complain about these adapters...

See Model S to Roadster adapter - Page 47 for a recent post of a Roadster charging at the factory in Fremont.
That's still servicing Teslas. However, we don't know Tesla's reaction if it means non-Teslas would be regularly using HPWC they donated. Also if a Tesla owner comes up to a HPWC and sees a non-Tesla using it, the feedback to Tesla may be negative.
 
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TexasEV

Well-Known Member
Jun 5, 2013
7,650
8,911
Austin, TX
That's still servicing Teslas. However, we don't know Tesla's reaction if it means non-Tesla's would be regularly using HPWC they donated. Also if a Tesla owner comes up to a HPWC and sees a non-Tesla using it, the feedback to Tesla may be negative.
May be negative? I'd have the same reaction as if the spot were ICE'd.
 

dhanson865

Active Member
Feb 16, 2013
4,759
9,071
Knoxville, Tennessee
Also, for folks with the proper skills and tools, how hard can it be to take an impression (or 3D scan) of the head of the MS charging wand and manufacture the socket needed to do this? I'm sure they could sell hundreds of them to people who want to make these types of adapters (Tesla copyright/IP issues not-withstanding).

What copyright/IP issues? Didn't Elon Musk say all the patents are open for any company to use?
 
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Larry Chanin

President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts
Aug 22, 2011
4,937
805
Sarasota, Florida
That's still servicing Teslas. However, we don't know Tesla's reaction if it means non-Tesla's would be regularly using HPWC they donated. Also if a Tesla owner comes up to a HPWC and sees a non-Tesla using it, the feedback to Tesla may be negative.

That's true we don't know for certain what Tesla's reaction would be, but we can be fairly certain that building an adapter would be a lot less costly than donating J1772 chargers to certain host locations. Yet, the practice remains for Tesla to go to the added expense of donating J1772 chargers at certain destinations in order to ensure that their customers fully benefit from Tesla's HPWC donations. I'm guessing that if such an adapter was made by anyone else but Tesla in meaningful numbers it would be deemed a violation of the good faith use of Tesla's patents and Tesla would enforce their patent rights against them.

Larry

- - - Updated - - -

What copyright/IP issues? Didn't Elon Musk say all the patents are open for any company to use?

Not exactly. There are terms for the use of Tesla's patents even if licensing fees are not required. These terms are not in the public domain. It's strictly up to Tesla to decide which use of its patents are permitted. If they deem a use is not appropriate they will simply enforce their patent rights against the company/person.

Larry
 
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stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
10,998
6,112
What copyright/IP issues? Didn't Elon Musk say all the patents are open for any company to use?
Elon didn't say he would tolerate everything. A reminder of the exact phrasing:
"Tesla will not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology."
http://www.teslamotors.com/blog/all-our-patent-are-belong-you

Here's a deep interview of what Musk meant (although it is paraphrasing):
What Musk described is very laid back. The other companies are now free to do as they wish. Within limits. Which is where the questions flooded in: what does Tesla mean by “good faith”? He gave two example scenarios that would not be good faith

As I mentioned earlier, doing a full-on clone of a Tesla automobile would be “bad faith”. That sort of concern borders on trademark law rather than patent law. A company which used Tesla’s patents, but then sued Tesla for using their patents, would be acting in “bad faith”
http://longtailpipe.com/2014/06/13/deep-dive-into-tesla-motors-pseudo-open/

While that doesn't directly cover the case here, I think Tesla can easily say that trying to copy their connector design in whole in order to charge a car at a charging station that Tesla intended to be exclusive to their customers is "bad faith". As Larry put it, Tesla went to the effort to adding additional J1772 stations in locations that wanted non-Teslas to be able to charge, so Tesla would appear to intend to leave HPWCs for Teslas only.

A B-Class and RAV-4 EV (which still uses Tesla tech) perhaps would still roughly fall within Tesla's intentions, but if a Leaf used something like like that, then things might be different.
 

mknox

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2012
10,103
1,894
Toronto, ON
It makes total sense to have a Tesla-to-J1772 adapter. This will allow all of the facilities with HPWC destination chargers to be used with J1772 capable vehicles. It also gives a two EV household with a Tesla the ability to charge the non-Tesla using the HPWC.

Exactly. I'd love to have a Tesla to J1772 adapter... basically the reverse of the one that comes with the car. I ended up getting a HPWC at home, but if I ever get a second, non Tesla EV it would be nice to be able to use it for the second car.

- - - Updated - - -

I don't know that Tesla would want HPWC destination chargers to be used with J1772 capable vehicles. One of the marketing benefits of giving them away to hotels, etc. was for guests to see Teslas being charged there. Not Leafs or i3s or whatever.

Have to disagree with that. A lot of J1772 stations were also donated and Tesla gives you an adapter to use them with the car. Why shouldn't the reverse be true? Tesla's mission, after all, is to accelerate the adoption of all makes of EVs so it shouldn't be an issue for them.
 

Larry Chanin

President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts
Aug 22, 2011
4,937
805
Sarasota, Florida
Have to disagree with that. A lot of J1772 stations were also donated and Tesla gives you an adapter to use them with the car. Why shouldn't the reverse be true? Tesla's mission, after all, is to accelerate the adoption of all makes of EVs so it shouldn't be an issue for them.

In theory Tesla has no problem with other manufacturers charging at Supercharger Stations provided that the battery is large enough to take that level of fast charging and if the manufacturer pays the "cost of admission". In my opinion the same principal would apply to HPWCs. That is, Tesla would not want other manufacturer's EVs that charge as low as 3.3 kW to be displacing Tesla owners at HPWCs that are capable of charging at up to 20 kW. As I mentioned upthread, I believe that Tesla would enforce their patent rights if sufficient numbers of adapters were being marketed for the purpose of tying up HPWCs with slow charging EVs from other manufacturers. As I stated earlier, Tesla is accelerating the adoption of other makes of EVs by donating J1772 chargers. They don't have to inconvenience their own customers by permitting the misuse of HPWCs via the use of an unlicensed adapter.

Larry
 

mknox

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2012
10,103
1,894
Toronto, ON
That is, Tesla would not want other manufacturer's EVs that charge as low as 3.3 kW to be displacing Tesla owners at HPWCs that are capable of charging at up to 20 kW. As I mentioned upthread, I believe that Tesla would enforce their patent rights if sufficient numbers of adapters were being marketed for the purpose of tying up HPWCs with slow charging EVs from other manufacturers. As I stated earlier, Tesla is accelerating the adoption of other makes of EVs by donating J1772 chargers. They don't have to inconvenience their own customers by permitting the misuse of HPWCs via the use of an unlicensed adapter.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but once these HPWCs are provided to "destinations", they become the property of the destination site owner and any policies around their use would be up to them, not Tesla. I see lots that are labeled as "for patrons only" and many are wired up for significantly less than the 80 amps they are capable of. Most I've come across are 40 amps or less.

I installed two 80 amp J1772 stations at my office, mainly so Teslas can take full advantage of the power, but I certainly wouldn't turn away a Volt charging at 15 amps. If the speculated Tesla to J1772 adapter were available, and I had installed HPWCs as opposed to J1772 stations, I would have no problems allowing other EVs to use them as the owner of the stations.

Lots of Teslas charge up at GM, Ford, Nissan dealerships and such. Surely those stations were put in for Volts, Focus EVs and Leafs, but in many (admittedly, not all) cases they are open to EVs of other makes as well.

To me, it seems silly to differentiate Tesla Level 2 charging to all other Level 2 charging. If Tesla is truly interested in accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles, we're all going to have to get along.
 
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dhanson865

Active Member
Feb 16, 2013
4,759
9,071
Knoxville, Tennessee
In theory Tesla has no problem with other manufacturers charging at Supercharger Stations provided that the battery is large enough to take that level of fast charging and if the manufacturer pays the "cost of admission". In my opinion the same principal would apply to HPWCs. That is, Tesla would not want other manufacturer's EVs that charge as low as 3.3 kW to be displacing Tesla owners at HPWCs that are capable of charging at up to 20 kW. As I mentioned upthread, I believe that Tesla would enforce their patent rights if sufficient numbers of adapters were being marketed for the purpose of tying up HPWCs with slow charging EVs from other manufacturers. As I stated earlier, Tesla is accelerating the adoption of other makes of EVs by donating J1772 chargers. They don't have to inconvenience their own customers by permitting the misuse of HPWCs via the use of an unlicensed adapter.

Larry

Since Tesla sells cars with only a 10KW charger I think it is disingenuous to state that Tesla doesn't want sub 20KW cars charging on a HPWC. You could argue about 6.x KW, 7.2 KW and if they are close enough to 10KW but complaining about a car with a 9.x or 10KW charger on a HPWC just seems hypocritical.
 
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gg_got_a_tesla

Model S: VIN 65513, Model 3: VIN 1913
Jan 29, 2010
6,534
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Redwood Shores, CA
Lots of Teslas charge up at GM, Ford, Nissan dealerships and such. Surely those stations were put in for Volts, Focus EVs and Leafs, but in many (admittedly, not all) cases they are open to EVs of other makes as well.

To me, it seems silly to differentiate Tesla Level 2 charging to all other Level 2 charging. If Tesla is truly interested in accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles, we're all going to have to get along.

Amen. This topic has been discussed before with the same arguments from both camps. Unless the property explicitly forbids non-Teslas from plugging in, any other EV with this adapter should be allowed to charge from an HPWC.

These "privileged tiers" of charging rights are not a good thing, whether from a vanilla J1772 or from an adapted HPWC.
 
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stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
10,998
6,112
It's all fine and dandy talking about altruistic causes and what should happen, but ultimately those HPWCs were donated for use by Tesla customers, not other EVs (Tesla deliberately donated separate J1772 for other EVs). When a Tesla owner pulls up to find another car charging using such an adapter (at 3-6x slower rate), I'm not sure they would be perfectly fine with that. And if Tesla hears complaints about it, I don't think Tesla will hesitate to assert their design patent / trademark rights in regards to the Model S connector/socket.
 

mknox

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2012
10,103
1,894
Toronto, ON
When a Tesla owner pulls up to find another car charging using such an adapter (at 3-6x slower rate), I'm not sure they would be perfectly fine with that.

But are you saying it's perfectly fine for a Tesla to use a J1772 station with the Tesla adapter regardless of who the intended audience of that station was?

EDIT: Case in point: There is a shopping center near me with a HPWC and 2-J1772 stations. If the HPWC is occupied, can I use the J1772 station?
 

gavine

Petrol Head turned EV Enthusiast
Apr 1, 2014
2,611
2,173
Philadelphia, PA
No one is saying that Tesla needs to make this adapter.....I don't expect them to. If they did, you would undoubtedly have Leafs, etc. trying to plug-in at Superchargers. However, third parties should be able to make them. I'm quite surprised no one has done it yet. There's obviously a market for it.
 

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