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NEMA 5-20 option?

Discussion in 'Model S: Battery & Charging' started by SeanTek, Oct 15, 2012.

  1. SeanTek

    SeanTek Member

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    Hi everybody; first post.

    I took stock of my garage situation and have determined that installing a 240V / 50A NEMA
    14-50 outlet (40A effective) is not economically viable. However,
    installing a NEMA 5-20 outlet (16A effective) would not only be viable,
    but would charge the Model S 33% faster than the standard NEMA 5-15
    outlet (12A effective, or 5 mi/hr). It may not be a huge difference, but
    that difference adds up to 20 miles over the course of a 12-hour
    overnight charge.

    Does anybody know if NEMA 5-20 is an option for the Model S charger, and
    what the downsides or caveats are? NEMA 5-20 is listed for the Tesla
    Roadster, but not the Model S.
     
  2. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    I think so. You can just plug the 5-15P adapter into the 5-20R. At least with the Roadster, you could then tell the car to pull 16 amps. But really, do you want to regularly charge your Model S with only 120 volts?
     
  3. agileone

    agileone CDN P#40

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  4. SeanTek

    SeanTek Member

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    Well, the thing is that on the Charging Model S page, NEMA 5-20 is not listed (in contrast to the Roadster documentation).
     
  5. SeanTek

    SeanTek Member

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    Well, the Charging Model S page makes no mention of the NEMA 5-15 socket, in contrast to the Roadster documentation.
     
  6. strider

    strider Active Member

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    Working off my hazy memory I don't think the current Model S's allowed the owners to change to 16A but could just be a software update that could come later.

    I would only assume that the adapters listed here will be available for Model S:
    Charging Model S | Tesla Motors

    Any chance you could get a 10-30 or 14-30 installed? This would dramatically increase your charge rate.
     
  7. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    5-20 is NOT available. I'll try to remember to see if I can up the amperage while on the 5-15 but I doubt it. I've let Tesla know it would be nice to have. They're prioritizing which adapters to make based on demand, so let them know if you want it.
     
  8. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    I just tested with the 5-15 on my Model S (software 1.9.11). While it defaults to 12A, it *does* let you dial it up to 15. Not the 16 you can get with 5-20 but if you have a 20A circuit it looks like you can safely increase it to 15A.
     
  9. SeanTek

    SeanTek Member

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    Thanks cinergi. Can you tell that it is actually effective? For example, if it takes 5 hours to add x charge using 12A, it should take 4 hours to add the same x amount of charge using 15A. Just simple math.
     
  10. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    It was a shared plug in the complex and I didn't want to risk tripping anything so I didn't let it continue for more than a few seconds. When I have access to a 120V plug that I know is dedicated, I can give it another shot and see ...
     
  11. napabill

    napabill Active Member

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    "Your Delivery Experience Specialist will offer you a choice of 240 volt outlet adapters when you take delivery."

    Does this mean TM will provide just one, or two if needed. I have two homes, one with a newly installed 14-50 and a 10-30 dryer plug I plan to use in the second home.
     
  12. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

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    They give you a 5-15, 120V adapter and one 240V adapter. I asked for two 240 adapters, a 14-50 and a 6-50 and they gave both to me.

    Because there is a 10-30 in my hangar, I asked to order one of those adapters. Even though the 10-30 is on the web site, as of now, it does not exist in the Tesla parts system and I couldn't order one for now. Its pretty easy to make a cheater cord for the 10-30p to 14-50r, but be aware that the 10-30 does not have a ground, only a neutral, so the ground pin on the 14-50 won't have a place to connect. In my cheater cord, I connected the ground in the 14-50 to neutral. This is not good practice according to current electrical code, but its my cheater cord for me to use, and I felt that it was safer than not connecting the ground at all. BTW, your dryer plugged into the 10-30 connects ground to neutral. Make your own decisions. Also, when you use the cheater cord, you will have to manually limit the Model S to 24 Amps via the 17" controls. Luckily, it remembers the location and you only have to do that once.
     
  13. napabill

    napabill Active Member

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    At this point I'm not sure if my winter place has a 10-30 or 14-30 dryer plug. If it is a 14-30, do you think that adapter is available from Tesla? I'm going down there next week so will know for sure then. And my "S" (P83) is not due until we return the first of December.
     
  14. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

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    If the install was within the last 20 years or so, it is probably a 14-30. See Charging Model S and click on the "Adapter Guide" tab. The 14-30 is listed by Tesla so if not available now, it will hopefully be available someday.

    The only difference between the 14-30 and the 14-50 is the shape of the neutral pin. See NEMA 14 connector Because the Model S UMC does not use the neutral of a 240V connection, and if you are brave, you can just cut the neutral pin off of your 14-50 adapter; it will then fit in a 14-50 and 14-30 receptacle. As with the cheater cord, you will have to manually tell the S to only use 24 Amps at locations where you plug into a 14-30.

    Good Luck!
     
  15. stephenpace

    stephenpace VIN S00219

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    I got a notification from Tesla yesterday that the Model S 14-30 adapter should be available soon, perhaps 3 weeks, with the 10-30 available sometime in January. You'll be able to buy them from the website.
     
  16. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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    NEC 1996 is when the ground requirement was introduced, and adoption is generally 3 years behind in most jurisdictions, so anything built after 1999ish should have 14-30. My 1991 home has a 10-30 for a dryer outlet.
     
  17. SeanTek

    SeanTek Member

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    I wanted to resurrect this thread since I want a Tesla to make a NEMA 5-20 adapter. :rolleyes: There are instructions at the end of the PDF here http://cosmacelf.net/Home%20Made%20Adapters.pdf but I want the real thing--it's safer in any event.

    What's the best way to petition Tesla to get them to pay attention?
     
  18. Cosmacelf

    Cosmacelf Active Member

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    Who knows? I sent the ownership email a polite email about this and other charging adapters a few weeks ago and essentially got a form letter reply. Every single popular consumer company has products that people want to adapt/change/extend. That's why you have cell phone jailbreaking, etc. For now, all we can do is make our own adapters...
     
  19. rdrcrmatt

    rdrcrmatt Member

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    which really isn't all that hard at all. I've made plenty for my RV in odd situations.
     
  20. SeanTek

    SeanTek Member

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    The thing that bothers/concerns me the most is setting the amperage manually prior to charging. What happens if you forget, or are lazy? (I am more interested in the lazy part :biggrin: )

    It would be nice if someone, i.e., an aftermarket vendor, could figure out what pins or electronics are built into the Mobile Connector adapters to signal the maximum amperage for that adapter, so that different adapters could be made.
     

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