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Impact of Supercharging on Battery Life?

mfan

Member
Aug 23, 2019
15
2
California
I got my MY on Dec. 30th and qualified for the free 1-yr supercharging. Since I can't charge at home, I've been using superchargers exclusively and will likely be doing so for at least the next 8 months. I read that supercharging will shorten the battery life. How much damage will it cause? Is there a way to slow down the charge rate to minimize the damage? Thanks.
 

Pilot1226

Member
Dec 20, 2019
355
161
USA
Superchargers will taper down depending on where your state of charge currently is and other parameters (temperature).

I wouldn’t worry too much about it, and just use it to supplement your home/work/destination L1/2 charging solutions. In other words, don’t Supercharge to 100% and let it sit there at full capacity. Take what you need and get to your destination. It’s a supplement, not a replacement.
 
I read that supercharging will shorten the battery life. How much damage will it cause? Is there a way to slow down the charge rate to minimize the damage? Thanks.

Correct, but it's difficult to quantify. Also, after enough supercharging, you will begin to notice a slower max charge speed, even when ideal circumstances are met with cell temperature, outdoor temperature, state of charge, etc.

The amount of DC or AC power transferred is recorded so that when it eventually reaches so many kWh transferred via DC charging, it will begin to limit the max DC charge rate to preserve the health of the battery. Once you reach this point, the amount that it limits the charge rate will continue to increase as you continue to supercharge. The amount of kWh that it takes to reach that point is not as much as you may think.

While you can use urban superchargers to charge at a reduced rate of 72kW, it still counts this as DC charging.
 

Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
7,332
9,031
Boise, ID
First off, this was mainly an issue with the earlier packs in the Model S and X the first few years. I don't think there have been many reports of this with the newly designed Model 3 and Y packs. But then again, the Model 3 has only been out since 2018, so there is less data.

Anyway, do keep in mind how impacting this effect is. On the old S and X, 120 kW was about the fastest they could charge to begin with. When they started to get charging speeds reduced to about 90 kW, there was wailing and gnashing of teeth.

With the Model 3 and Y, they are designed for almost 250 kW max. If they got a similar one fourth reduction, that's still like 180kW. That's still a really fantastic charging speed! So even if the 3 and Y do start to see some capping of their max charging power, it's not going to be nearly as noticeable or inconvenient.
 

jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
4,399
4,582
Maryland
I got my MY on Dec. 30th and qualified for the free 1-yr supercharging. Since I can't charge at home, I've been using superchargers exclusively and will likely be doing so for at least the next 8 months. I read that supercharging will shorten the battery life. How much damage will it cause? Is there a way to slow down the charge rate to minimize the damage? Thanks.
It is better for the long term health of the battery if you limit the charging rate (also discharge rate) of a lithium ion battery to no more than 1C (where C is the capacity of the battery pack in kWh.) So if you plan to use your free Supercharging frequently it makes sense to seek out an Urban Supercharger. At 72kW maximum charging rate the Urban Supercharger is under 1C for charging the Long Range Model Y, Model 3 battery. Charging will be a bit slower than at a 120kW/150kW/250kW Supercharger but you will be putting less stress on the battery.
 

mfan

Member
Aug 23, 2019
15
2
California
It is better for the long term health of the battery if you limit the charging rate (also discharge rate) of a lithium ion battery to no more than 1C (where C is the capacity of the battery pack in kWh.) So if you plan to use your free Supercharging frequently it makes sense to seek out an Urban Supercharger. At 72kW maximum charging rate the Urban Supercharger is under 1C for charging the Long Range Model Y, Model 3 battery. Charging will be a bit slower than at a 120kW/150kW/250kW Supercharger but you will be putting less stress on the battery.

Thanks! I'll keep that in mind. Most nearby superchargers are Urban. I think my average rate over the last 8 recharges was around 50 kW. I also try to keep my battery between 25% and 85%, except on long trips. So far, the highest I have charged to was 95% and the lowest was 13%.

So far, I'm a little disappointed at the charge rate of v2 & v3 supercharging stations, I have not yet seen sustained charge rate above 100 kW. The highest ever was only about 180 kW at a v3 station, and that was after setting it as the destination about 135 miles away and ran the battery down to 19% when I got there. The station had 20+ chargers and was nearly empty. The rate ramped up quickly to about 180 kW, but then steadily declined to about 60 kW when I stopped it at 85%. I think the average worked out to be about 85 kW, far, far less than the 250 kW rating of v3 chargers.
 

aerodyne

Nose cone car - to LR (Deferred to May)
Nov 19, 2018
3,771
6,164
Los Angeles
Youtuber Tesla Bjorn has reported slowing SuC speeds on M3 after 10000KwH of DC. It does not appear to get worse after that limit is reached.

Remember older MS and MX (Search Tesloop) were SuCed daily to 100% and some packs lasted well over 100,000 miles, then replaced under warranty.
 

GtiMart

Active Member
Nov 13, 2019
1,842
1,715
Quebec City, Canada
@mfan , do a Google search of "charging curve v3 [your car model]"... Here's one such graph here for a Model 3 long range I believe. 250kW is only up to 20% SOC then it starts dropping. Obviously your battery also needs to be hot enough to accept that much power so you definitely need to navigate to the supercharger so the car heats it up before you arrive. I think it needs to be well enough over 100F to accept that much power.
Note that these charging curves are not published by Tesla (I think they should) and are subject to change with software updates.
 

nvilletele

Member
Apr 18, 2021
18
11
SoCal
You should really be asking this in the Model S forum as the Model S battery (2013 Model Year) is different than the battery used in the Model Y.
Yes, I realized this a bit late, after I had already made my post. This thread came up as a suggested place to post my comment from the forum software, and I failed to immediately see it was related to Model Y.
 

jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
4,399
4,582
Maryland
You can ask the moderator to move your post.

As far as I am aware after 8 years any degradation of the Model S battery pack from frequent Supercharging including any reduced capacity, throttling back when Supercharging has already happened. Why not just enjoy the Model S.

In general, for lithium batteries, it is better for the battery if you limit the maximum charging rate (also discharge rate) to 1C where C is the total capacity of the battery. Charging at much over 1C will stress the battery. This is a why an Urban Supercharger (72kW charging rate) although a bit slower than the V2 Supercharger (120 to 150kW) or V3 Supercharger (up to 250kW) is better for maximizing the life and health of the battery. That said, Tesla has very sophisticated battery management protocols in place when Supercharging a Tesla vehicle so you really can't do anything to hurt the battery by Supercharging. The worst that would happen is that Tesla will throttle back the maximum charging rate to probably where your Model S is at now.
 

nvilletele

Member
Apr 18, 2021
18
11
SoCal
You can ask the moderator to move your post.

As far as I am aware after 8 years any degradation of the Model S battery pack from frequent Supercharging including any reduced capacity, throttling back when Supercharging has already happened. Why not just enjoy the Model S.

In general, for lithium batteries, it is better for the battery if you limit the maximum charging rate (also discharge rate) to 1C where C is the total capacity of the battery. Charging at much over 1C will stress the battery. This is a why an Urban Supercharger (72kW charging rate) although a bit slower than the V2 Supercharger (120 to 150kW) or V3 Supercharger (up to 250kW) is better for maximizing the life and health of the battery. That said, Tesla has very sophisticated battery management protocols in place when Supercharging a Tesla vehicle so you really can't do anything to hurt the battery by Supercharging. The worst that would happen is that Tesla will throttle back the maximum charging rate to probably where your Model S is at now.

Thanks, this is very helpful. Just to clarify, when you say total capacity, may I assume that is in miles? So in my case it would be 260 miles. But what does charging at 1C mean exactly? Does it equate to a speed of 260 miles per hour of charging?

Or is this not a function of miles, but rather of kWh or the like? I am a bit clueless in this respect, I am afraid.

In any event, when I supercharge, regardless of the total kW of the charging station, the car never charges faster than 75~80 kW or around 240 ~250 mph of charging. So I would think it is already taking care of the max 1C by itself, throttling back the max charge as you mentioned.

EDIT: OK, duh, I just realized that my battery capacity (in my P85+) would be 85kW, so I assume that would be C. Is that right? Since I have never seen my car charge actually charge at 85kW and is always less, I suppose I really have little if anything to worry about . . . . (Or have I not gotten the electrical units finally straight?)
 
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Thanks, this is very helpful. Just to clarify, when you say total capacity, may I assume that is in miles? So in my case it would be 260 miles. But what does charging at 1C mean exactly? Does it equate to a speed of 260 miles per hour of charging?

Or is this not a function of miles, but rather of kWh or the like? I am a bit clueless in this respect, I am afraid.

In any event, when I supercharge, regardless of the total kW of the charging station, the car never charges faster than 75~80 kW or around 240 ~250 mph of charging. So I would think it is already taking care of the max 1C by itself, throttling back the max charge as you mentioned.

C-rating is used to describe the charging/discharging profile of a battery, where C is the capacity (usually in amp-hours, but it is often described in kWh as well).

So if you refer to a 1C charge rate, and you're dealing with a 100kWh battery capacity, your charge rate will be 100kW. 2C would be 200kW and so on.
 

aerodyne

Nose cone car - to LR (Deferred to May)
Nov 19, 2018
3,771
6,164
Los Angeles
Thanks, this is very helpful. Just to clarify, when you say total capacity, may I assume that is in miles? So in my case it would be 260 miles. But what does charging at 1C mean exactly? Does it equate to a speed of 260 miles per hour of charging?

Or is this not a function of miles, but rather of kWh or the like? I am a bit clueless in this respect, I am afraid.

In any event, when I supercharge, regardless of the total kW of the charging station, the car never charges faster than 75~80 kW or around 240 ~250 mph of charging. So I would think it is already taking care of the max 1C by itself, throttling back the max charge as you mentioned.

Yes, us owners of charge gated 85 packs can take solace in the fact that 1C which is 77Kw or less, is good for our packs....
 

Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
7,332
9,031
Boise, ID
In general, for lithium batteries, it is better for the battery if you limit the maximum charging rate (also discharge rate) to 1C where C is the total capacity of the battery. Charging at much over 1C will stress the battery.
I have seen the studies on that, though, and those are assuming no temperature control, because the heating up from fast charging is what causes most of the damage. If the system is doing active cooling to keep the temperature down, they can go pretty high above 1C rates while still preventing most damage.

EDIT: OK, duh, I just realized that my battery capacity (in my P85+) would be 85kW, so I assume that would be C. Is that right? Since I have never seen my car charge actually charge at 85kW and is always less, I suppose I really have little if anything to worry about . . . . (Or have I not gotten the electrical units finally straight?)
Yes, the 1C means refilling the battery's capacity in 1 hour. So you got it, to leave the mph part of it out. Just look at 85 kWh capacity at 85 kW power level is about 1 hour is about 1C rate. (There's nuance to that, because the recharge curve isn't straight linear, but that's the general idea.)
 
Yes, the 1C means refilling the battery's capacity in 1 hour. So you got it, to leave the mph part of it out. Just look at 85 kWh capacity at 85 kW power level is about 1 hour is about 1C rate. (There's nuance to that, because the recharge curve isn't straight linear, but that's the general idea.)

That's a confusing way to think about it from my perspective, after all, a 1C charge rate takes longer than an hour because you're referring to the peak rate only.. The time it takes to refill the batteries' full capacity is dependent on the size of the top buffer. The C rate is purely how fast a battery can accept power, it does not define how long it will take to fully charge.

Now, in terms of discharging, one can use the C rating to easily understand how long a battery will last.
 
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