Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register

Level 1 vs. Level 2 Charging Cost?

LanonJ

New Member
Jun 27, 2021
1
0
Bakersfield
Hey guys,

I just purchased my brand new Model Y 2 weeks ago and I’m down to 500 miles of the 1,000 I was given for the referral bonus or whatever. I’m stuck between upgrading to a level 2 charging solution or staying at level 1. I drive about 30-40 miles per day and I usually charge about 30-40 miles per night when I get home and if I miss a day or two and get down to 100 miles or so I just fully charge on my two days off and then go from there. If I miss that charging cycle I just drive to my charging station (7.6 miles out) and fully charge up then head home and usually have about 270-290 miles of range. My deciding factor is this:

If I upgrade to a level 2 charging station at home will that lower or increase my bill, versus if I just stay on the basic level 1 charging, or will it have no adverse change to my bill?

Im a newbie so when it comes to electricity and all that good stuff I just don’t get it. Like say I need to charge 100 miles on my car. That would take 20 hours (5 miles per hour) on my level 1. But on level 2 it might do it in half the time or maybe even faster then that. But does it cost the same thing to do both since it is giving me 100 miles either way. Or since the level 2 charging is faster and does it in half the time, does that make it cheaper? Trying to see if I am paying to just charge faster or if I am actually paying for efficiency in the long run since I will be charging 100% at home over the next 7-10 years.

To add to the equation, don’t know if this helps or I tried to switch to TOU and potentially go solar. However, my electric company PG&E said to stay on my current plan because I pay 0.17 cents for my baseline tier, 0.22 cents for tier 2, and 0.265 cents for high use regardless of how much I use or the time of day I charge. They did say going solar would be up to me on whether or not I can negotiate a cheap rate with the solar company. But that’s a different conversation for a different day. I just wanted to add how much I was paying just in case that changes things!

Weather: In the summer it gets about 90-108 degrees, and normally 80-95 on regular days so that may also be a factor as I lose range due to the heat as well.

If there is anything else that would help let me know. I want to be as transparent as possible, to ensure I get the answer I am looking for! Thanks as always and look forward to your responses!
 

Attachments

  • 7CB6FC60-0C0F-4614-96A3-2EEA4AFBCEF0.jpeg
    7CB6FC60-0C0F-4614-96A3-2EEA4AFBCEF0.jpeg
    1 MB · Views: 18
  • 5891FB2F-0C2A-4244-8BEF-78203F4E9C43.jpeg
    5891FB2F-0C2A-4244-8BEF-78203F4E9C43.jpeg
    837 KB · Views: 18

Consult

Member
Mar 22, 2021
45
23
Los Angeles, CA
I have a 50 gal aquarium that I keep heated to 84 and have lights that are on 10hrs per day in addition to all of the network items that are on 24x7. We are not a low energy usage household and our usage always had some tier 3 charges. Since we moved to the TOU plan that you have shown from SCE, our bill has dropped somewhat even with adding the Tesla charging. I charge late at night and we do things like washing clothes and dishes during the non-prime hours. It hasn't been that hard and our 4pm to 6pm usage is now about 22% of our total (incuding weekends). One caveat, we don't have air (we live about 1.5 miles from the beach), so we don't have that prime time hit.

I agree that having a battery would be ideal, but last time I checked the payback period was too long.
Hey, a fellow South Bay Tesla driver and possibly a Bruin as well? I just got my model y a couple months ago. Been mostly charging at home but been meaning to try out the 250 kw super chargers at del amo fashion center, just to witness it. The last time I was rolling into the mall, someone was just leaving one of those Volta spots so I just took that and L2 while I got some Lemonade lol. Any other cool Tesla things in South Bay??? (We actually just moved here from marina del Rey)
 
Upvote 0

dolfs

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Mar 8, 2021
65
68
Mountain View, CA, USA
CA electricity is very expensive! Here in the SF Bay area in the traditional tiered plan prices average about $0.29 if you do not go into tier 3. For our household, which is about 9,000 kWh per year, switching to TOU does not look like it will make a big difference unless we (a) make an effort to run various devices off-peak (outside 4PM-9PM), and (b) try to pre-cool the house during the night with open windows and off-peak times with AC as necessary to avoid running AC during peak (our heating is gas-based).
TOU rates are $0.28/0.35 off peak (tier 1, tier 2) and $0.34/0.42 in peak summer times, and $0.23/0.30 resp. $0.25/0.32 in peak winter. So basically in summer when your peak usage is likely to be the worst, your delta between the tiers is 7 or 8 cents per kWh and another step like that comparing off-peak vs. peak.
I'll be switching to solar soon with a system sized to come close to net 0 including charging a MY for about 5,000 mi/yr and having some excess production for increased future use. Due to peak hours we will likely not come to net 0 during the peak so it will still be important to watch when using certain devices and charge car during off peak. Battery just to arbitrage the peak usage seems not economically worth it. Most batteries last only 10 years according to specs and can cost s much as $10,000 for a 12 kWh battery or such. If your battery can totally net out your peak usages you must over produce that much during the day times to make it cost $0.00 instead of the $0.34. If that is about 10 kWh (which seems high), that will net you $3.40 per day or about $1,200 per year.. So that battery will take you about 8-10 years to recoup, and then you'd have to buy a new one. If you use less than 10kWh during peak, it will take even longer. In reality you are producing some energy during at least the first part of peak (although not peak production), so you would not have to arbitrage that anyway.
If you want to battery to bridge possible power outages, that math goes out the window (but then you may need more than one battery). You are investing in a convenience and that is much harder to value precisely.
 
Upvote 0

TravelFree

Member
Mar 23, 2020
799
709
Jacksonville, Florida
Our electric rates here are a flat 12.9 cents a KWH 24/7 365days a year. This includes all taxes and other fees. It was 11.9 cents two months ago but they increased one of the fees due to Federal government shutdown of well sites that triggered a spi8ke in fossil fuel charges. Still, compared to what others are paying we have it cheaper.

Last week I got a notice from our power company that they are planning a TOU rate discount for owners with Home EV charging. Details will be sent to me in July on how to sign up for the program. I don't know yet what the special rate will be or how they plan to measure it. Only way I can see it working is if all my electricity use is in the discounted hours, not just the EV charging use. But to qualify for the TOU, I will probably have to prove I own at least one EV car and have a home charging.

Our house is central heat and air 2000 sq ft with a swimming pool pump and electric chlorinator that runs every day. We consume about 1100 KWH per month. Spring and Fall we get a break on the bill as the HVAC barely runs.

Also, I try to take advantage of my free Supercharging on both cars most of the time. I haven't spent more than $45 in electricity to charge for two years. With gas cars we were spending $82 a month. Before Teslas we had Nissan Leaf and that also had free lifetime DC fast charging perk.
 
Upvote 0

spokey

Member
Aug 8, 2020
703
261
Flagtown
Everytime I read about EVs/charging, the article seems to use .12 as a national average. So you're a bit above average. Given mine is high teens and a few here (CA?) report in the .20s or more, where are the single digit rates that must be around to average .12 nationwide?
 
Upvote 0

iamnid

Member
Dec 4, 2019
718
686
Riverside, CA
Just do yourself a favor and get L2 charging at home - be it a 14-50, 6-50 or similar with mobile connector or a full-blown dedicated unit like a wall connector. You'll be happy with the convenience of charging the entire car over a few hours as opposed to an entire day.

And to the previous poster (@spokey ), there's no need to turn your level 2 charger down from 32A or whatever the max your circuit allows to give the car an "easy charge." It isn't any harder on the car to charge at 40A vs. 12A, you're just wasting time and an (albeit almost negligible) amount of extra energy lost to heat during the longer charge time.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Daekwan
Upvote 0

cjxmtn

Member
May 22, 2021
164
199
SoCal
Yes. Electricity here is horribly expensive, I think it's due to being mandated to buy only renewable energy sources, which are costly. The pennies per kW you pay is probably due to Natural Gas/Coal/Oil sources. As much as I'm for green energy, dare I say I'd rather be paying for non-renewable?
You're not kidding, before I had my EV I was paying 34 cents per kw non peak and 47 (or something close) during peak.. with EV I'm paying 17 peak/34 non-peak.. my parents in northern AZ and coworkers in NV are paying around 5cents non-peak.
 
Upvote 0

Daekwan

Member
Mar 9, 2021
87
89
DC
240V is more efficient than 120V and is, therefore, less expensive.

a 5-15 outlet will charge the MY about at about 3 miles per hours, one hour on charge is 1,440 watts

a 6-15 outlet (240v, same amperage) will charge at about 10 miles per hour, one hour on charge is 2,880 watts

So for twice the wattage you get 3+ times the charge. Reason? Mostly because the AC to DC conversion in the car is more efficient at 240v.
Surprised I had scroll this far to see this answer.

240V is alot more efficient. Using Teslamate for my Y which I tend to charge on both 120 & 240V (30A dryer outlet)... I find that most 120V charging is about 81% efficient.. and the 240V is about 96% efficient. While the 120V charging may be easier, more convenient & definitely cheaper upfront for most people (because you do not have to pay an electrician to install a 14-50 outlet or wall connector). The reality is over time using 120V to keep a daily driven EV charged is going to be a lot more expensive in the long run. Alex on Autos wrote an excellent article explaining this.. and it's more expensive than you think.. about $200 more every year for the typical EV daily driver.

If you daily drive or plan to daily an EV in the future. At a minimum, go ahead and pay up for 240V NEMA 14-50 outlet in your garage/driveway. The efficiency savings alone will pay for the installation cost in the long run. And for those on a peak/off-peak plan, who will be able to fully charge during just the off-peak hours when electricity is the absolute cheapest.. the 240V installation will pay for itself in just a couple years.

Its going to suck but I came to this same realization over the past month as Im about to pay an electrician about $2000 for the installation of a new 100A subpanel + Tesla wall connector + 14-50 outlet in my garage. The idea is the WC can quickly charge my Tesla at home now.. and the 14-50 outlet is to future proof things in case my wife decides to buy an EV in the next couple years or I trade my Tesla for another brand of EV.
 

Attachments

  • Screen Shot 2021-06-28 at 12.16.01 PM.png
    Screen Shot 2021-06-28 at 12.16.01 PM.png
    302 KB · Views: 6
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Schulz1983
Upvote 0

spokey

Member
Aug 8, 2020
703
261
Flagtown
Just do yourself a favor and get L2 charging at home - be it a 14-50, 6-50 or similar with mobile connector or a full-blown dedicated unit like a wall connector. You'll be happy with the convenience of charging the entire car over a few hours as opposed to an entire day.

And to the previous poster (@spokey ), there's no need to turn your level 2 charger down from 32A or whatever the max your circuit allows to give the car an "easy charge." It isn't any harder on the car to charge at 40A vs. 12A, you're just wasting time and an (albeit almost negligible) amount of extra energy lost to heat during the longer charge time.
could you explain that? It's counter intuitive to me. Seems like you'd have a higher / worse temperature at a higher amperage. At a lower amperage I'd think heat dissipation would keep the battery cooler. Also, every household nimh or li-on charger has recommended charging slower for longer life. I always charge my li-on AAs as low amperage as the charger supports. Is that wrong?
 
Upvote 0

TravelFree

Member
Mar 23, 2020
799
709
Jacksonville, Florida
Its going to suck but I came to this same realization over the past month as Im about to pay an electrician about $2000 for the installation of a new 100A subpanel + Tesla wall charger + 14-50 outlet in my garage.
Yikes! Why do you want a sub panel? Is your Garage detached? I sure hope you got competing estimates to just add a NEMA 14-50. Sub panel is overkill unless required and probably to just raise the price of the job.

It was stated earlier that price of copper has skyrocketed so I did a quick check. Here's what I paid:

In 2019, I paid $165 for 60 ft. of Romex 6-3 w G. The NEMA 14-50 receptacle and box was $26. The 50 amp breaker was $12 = $203.00

The only thing that went up in price was the wire. 60 ft of Romex is now $360. ~= $398.00

I needed 60 ft run because my main is on the other side of the house.
 
Upvote 0

Schulz1983

Model Y LR AWD: Matte PPF, Vossen HF-1
May 14, 2021
584
393
High Ridge MO
could you explain that? It's counter intuitive to me. Seems like you'd have a higher / worse temperature at a higher amperage. At a lower amperage I'd think heat dissipation would keep the battery cooler. Also, every household nimh or li-on charger has recommended charging slower for longer life. I always charge my li-on AAs as low amperage as the charger supports. Is that wrong?
Batteries need to be a certain temperature to charge. Sometimes when it is cooler outside, a 110 doesn’t heat the batteries enough so you waste more energy trying to warm the batteries to charge them. I don’t know all the knowledge behind it but 220 does charge more efficiently than 110. Engineering explained has a video on YouTube if you want to get into the nitty gritty on it.
 
Upvote 0

73Bruin

Member
Nov 7, 2020
225
116
Torrance, CA
Yes. Electricity here is horribly expensive, I think it's due to being mandated to buy only renewable energy sources, which are costly. The pennies per kW you pay is probably due to Natural Gas/Coal/Oil sources. As much as I'm for green energy, dare I say I'd rather be paying for non-renewable?



And the central AC is the biggest hit on the electricity bill (besides the EV). No AC = days with way less than 10kWh usage, but AC pushes that to 20-30. But even with the EV addition, its still cheaper than gasoline by a longshot. I remember having to fillup once a week at $70.00 or so, definitely don't miss those days.

Actually, I would pay somewhat more to go to all green power, but that isn't an option as the city I live in, is staying with SCE, while other cities have become joined in CCA's that offer lower rates than SCE and green power options.

I don't know where in Socal you live, but the tiered billing rates for SCE (at least) take into consideration where you live in setting their baseline. If we lived a couple of miles to the east, our energy baseline for tiered rates would be much higher and reduced our bill substantially.
 
Upvote 0

ATPMSD

Member
Mar 12, 2021
294
295
Atlanta, GA
new 100A subpanel + Tesla wall connector + 14-50 outlet in my garage

Seems like expensive overkill. If you run a 60-AMP 3-wire circuit you will be fine. If you then want to remove the wall connector you can install a 14-50 plug in its place and change the breaker to a GFI 50-amp. Probably $150 total cost.
 
Upvote 0

73Bruin

Member
Nov 7, 2020
225
116
Torrance, CA
Also, you can also convert a standard 5-15 (120V, 15A) outlet into a 240V 6-15 outlet IF you can do all of the following:

1. First you need to ensure you are using a dedicated circuit. If the circuit serves any other outlets or lights you need to disable them.
2. Replace the single pole 15A breaker with a dual-pole 15A breaker. This means you will need two open slots side by side.
3. Wire the black wire to one breaker and the white to the other (put a piece of Red tape on it), leave the ground connected
4. Replace the 5-15 (120V) outlet with a 6-15 (240V) outlet, again red tape on the white wire
5. Buy a 6-15 adapter from Tesla
Will this actually pass an inspection?
 
Upvote 0

Daekwan

Member
Mar 9, 2021
87
89
DC
Yikes! Why do you want a sub panel? Is your Garage detached? I sure hope you got competing estimates to just add a NEMA 14-50. Sub panel is overkill unless required and probably to just raise the price of the job.

It was stated earlier that price of copper has skyrocketed so I did a quick check. Here's what I paid:

In 2019, I paid $165 for 60 ft. of Romex 6-3 w G. The NEMA 14-50 receptacle and box was $26. The 50 amp breaker was $12 = $203.00

The only thing that went up in price was the wire. 60 ft of Romex is now $360. ~= $398.00

I needed 60 ft run because my main is on the other side of the house.
My garage is attached, but located on the opposite side of the house from my main panel which is also located underground (basement). So I basically had three options:
  • Install single new circuit run of 75' 4/3 romex + wall connector + 60A breaker (no future proofing)
  • Install two new circuit runs: 1) first run 75' 4/3 romex + wall connector + 60A breaker and 2) second run 75' 6/3 romex + NEMA 14-50R (future proofing)
  • Install new 100A subpanel in garage using 1ga aluminum service wire + two 6' runs 6ga THNN in conduit to wall connector + NEMA 14-50R (future proofing)
It is a 66' run of ANY wire to reach the garage from my main panel box in the basement. So every option is basically $1000 or more. With copper wire being so expensive 75' of 4/3 romex installed with the breaker starts at $1000. Doing two runs is basically $2000. Where as installing the 100A subpanel uses 1ga aluminum service wire which is cheaper and gives me a ton of options in the future. That $2000 price also includes a county permit on all the electrical work which is $500 by itself.. so its really only about $1500 for the actual parts & labor.

While its certainly cheapest to do a single run, you have to keep in mind that only covers charging one vehicle. What happens if/when my wife decides to get an EV? Then we are looking at sharing a single charger, installing some type of switching equipment to share two chargers or calling an electrician back out to run a second new circuit and paying another $1000.

The 100A subpanel in the garage now means I can add as many short runs in the garage as needed for rather cheap and do so using conduit outside the wall. Could add more 15A or 20A outlets (builder only gave us one outlet) around the garage wall for handheld tools & tools. It even allows adding a third 240V option.. like installing a 14-50 outlet outside the garage wall if I were get something like a Cybertruck that does not fit inside my garage. Which means that vehicle can only be charged in the driveway.

The 100A subpanel in the garage is the most cost effective solution that future proofs against everything I can think of over the next 10 years. If there anything I regret is not thinking like this when we built this home just 8 years ago. Chances are the builder could have installed a single or couple 240V outlets in the garage really cheap with the home was built in 2013. Really regret not considering what I might need in the garage for the next 10 years and now Im paying for it. Wont make that mistake again.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Schulz1983
Upvote 0

73Bruin

Member
Nov 7, 2020
225
116
Torrance, CA
Hey, a fellow South Bay Tesla driver and possibly a Bruin as well? I just got my model y a couple months ago. Been mostly charging at home but been meaning to try out the 250 kw super chargers at del amo fashion center, just to witness it. The last time I was rolling into the mall, someone was just leaving one of those Volta spots so I just took that and L2 while I got some Lemonade lol. Any other cool Tesla things in South Bay??? (We actually just moved here from marina del Rey)
Definitely a Bruin (class of 73 as if it wasn't obvious). I used the 250w chargers at Del Amo a lot when I had free supercharger miles. It is probably the southern most charger in the area. I have also used the one off of Pier Ave in Hermosa. It's actually on Ardmore. There is another on Marine but it was the older 150w chargers the only time I went there.

I don't know of any cool Tesla things in the South Bay. I have been hunting for free Level 2 chargers but I haven't found any yet. My daughter lives in San Pedro and there is a free level 2 charger on the public street her apartment is on. Just need the J1772 adaptor. I have found a lot of non-Tesla chargers that are no longer in service (e.g. at Costco).
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Consult
Upvote 0

jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
3,273
3,261
Maryland
Will this actually pass an inspection?
It should; the key take away is that you can only convert a 120V circuit and receptacle to 240V when the circuit terminates at a single location (this could be a junction box or a receptacle.) The circuit breaker rating does not change, if it was originally 15A it remains 15A. The neutral wire (normally the white wire) gets repurposed to be the second hot (120V) lead. The ends of the neutral wire are wrapped in electrical tape (using a color such as red) that tells the next electrician who works inside the panel or at the junction box or receptacle that the white wire is hot. The single pole circuit breaker gets replaced with a double pole circuit breaker of the same amperage. The receptacle is changed for the equivalent 240V receptacle, i.e. 6-15 (240V) for 5-15 (120V) or 6-20 for 5-20. You can't increase the amperage rating of the circuit or leave the 120V receptacle in place as these would be dangerous code violations.

Why do this at all? When you double the voltage of the circuit from 120V to 240V the maximum available power from the circuit is instantly doubled. The maximum power available from a 120V/15A circuit (derated to 80% when charging a plug in vehicle) is 120V X 12A = 1.4kW. For 240V circuit it is 240V X 12A = 2.8kW. For a given amperage the number of hours required to charge each day at 240V is half the time needed when charging at 120V; If you need 10 hours to charge at 120V you would only need 5 hours at 240V. Having used 120V charging 10 hours is on the edge of how many hours you may have available to charge during the week if you commute to a day job. 5 hours can easily fit into the time between midnight and 05:00 or 06:00.
 
Last edited:
Upvote 0

Daekwan

Member
Mar 9, 2021
87
89
DC
Seems like expensive overkill. If you run a 60-AMP 3-wire circuit you will be fine. If you then want to remove the wall connector you can install a 14-50 plug in its place and change the breaker to a GFI 50-amp. Probably $150 total cost.
60A breaker plus 75' 3-wire run of 6ga wire is a minimum of $1000 parts/labor and does NOT include a permit.
 
Upvote 0

spokey

Member
Aug 8, 2020
703
261
Flagtown
Batteries need to be a certain temperature to charge. Sometimes when it is cooler outside, a 110 doesn’t heat the batteries enough so you waste more energy trying to warm the batteries to charge them. I don’t know all the knowledge behind it but 220 does charge more efficiently than 110. Engineering explained has a video on YouTube if you want to get into the nitty gritty on it.
So it sounds like it might be better to charge at a higher rate in the winter and lower during the summer as the batteries can get too hot
 
Upvote 0

jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
3,273
3,261
Maryland
So it sounds like it might be better to charge at a higher rate in the winter and lower during the summer as the batteries can get too hot
Neither 120V or 240V power directly warms the battery pack in the Tesla Model Y. The battery pack is warmed by coolant that is circulated through the electric drive unit motors. The motor stators are powered by the high voltage battery and only use ~360V AC power.

In winter it is best to complete charging shortly before driving because the battery pack is already partially warmed. The battery does warm some from being charged but most of the warming is due to the motor stators heating up, warming coolant that is then circulated through the battery pack. The battery does not charge unless the temperature of the cells within the battery pack are first warmed to 50F (10C.) If you precondition the Tesla shortly after charging has completed the battery pack will already be close to 50F, only needs to be warmed to 68F (20C) to be fully warmed for driving.
 
Upvote 0

ATPMSD

Member
Mar 12, 2021
294
295
Atlanta, GA
For a given amperage the number of hours required to charge each day at 240V is half the time needed when charging at 120V; If you need 10 hours to charge at 120V you would only need 5 hours at 240V.

240v is more efficient than 120v and so you get something like 3x or more on the charging speed. Check out this table

 
Upvote 0

Products we're discussing on TMC...

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top