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Newbie- Model S need set up advise for charging

Discussion in 'Model S: Battery & Charging' started by nthebrk, Dec 14, 2016.

  1. nthebrk

    nthebrk New Member

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    First, is there a way to search the forum? If so, let me know.

    Okay, I live in old home, I really just want to use existing dryer Nema 14-30 receptacle 30 amp. I will be moving in a year
    and I don't want to spend a lot on electrical upgrades. The dryer receptacle is 18 feet from the car, the 12 foot standard cord is 4 feet too short. Does anyone have advise about some type of extension cord?

    Also, can I split the wire to dryer receptacle and have 2 of them. They will never be used at the same time. Just
    convenience so I don't have to plug and unplug.

    If someone knows of a thread, direct me to it.

    I am anxiously awaited delivery.
     
  2. msnow

    msnow Active Member

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    Here's the extension cord (Camco) many people use Tesla UMC Extension Cord via Camco 50 AMP 30' PowerGrip

    Here's a thread:
    50 AMP Extension Cord--important to Have??
     
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  3. S85D

    S85D Member

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    You can make your own extension cord/adapter. Order the 10 foot dryer cord and 14-50 receptacle from Amazon. I would recommend leaving the cord at 10 feet but you can shorten it to whatever length you want. Read the instruction manual below to see what wires go to the receptacle. It should not take your more than 15 minutes to build your 14-30 to 14-50 extension/adapter cord. You will plug the Telsa 14-50 adapter into the yellow 14-50 receptacle. This would allow you to be 22 feet away from the receptacle.

    You can buy 14-30 to 14-50 adapters on Amazon but they may only be 4 feet in length and you may end up being a couple of inches short. I built the same adapter and keep it my car when I am traveling. I also have many other adapters that I built so I can usually find places to charge when I am away from the Superchargers.

    Here is what you need:

    NEMA 14-30 Dryer Cord - Amazon.com: Certified Appliance 90-2028 4-wire Dryer Cord (10ft): Home Improvement

    NEMA 14-50 Receptacle - Amazon.com: Camco 55353 50 AMP Female Replacement Receptacle: Automotive

    Instructions - http://cosmacelf.net/Home Made Adapters.pdf

    One word of caution. You must manually dial down the amps below 30 amps on the 17" charging screen or you will pop the circuit breaker. The 14-50 adapter on the Tesla power cord expects 50 amps and the Tesla will try and pull 50 amps (actually only 40 amps). I have used the same 14-30/14-50 extension/adapter cord at my friends house and I had to lower the amps to 22 amps to keep the breaker from popping. I believe this is discussed in the instruction manual.

    All circuits are designed to pull 80% of the amperage on the breaker. If you install a 100 amp breaker to handle the charging of a Dual Charger Model S, the charger will only pull 80 amps. On a 30 amp circuit, you could dial in 24 amps (80% of 30 amps) and it would probably not trip the breaker.

    To search in the TMC forum, click on the magnifying glass at the top right corner of the black horizontal bar.

    You could splice another 14-30 receptacle into the existing one so that you would not have to unplug the dryer. This is probably against the electrical code because if someone turned on the dryer while you were charging the car if the breaker did not trip, you could start a fire. You would need 8-10 gauge wire a female 14-30 receptacle, conduit if you were going to mount it external to the wall, and a steel box and receptacle cover plate. I would discuss this with an electrician before you do it.

    One last thing, there is an old style and new style 30 amp dryer plug, one has 3 prongs and the other has 4 prongs on the plug. Check your dryer cord to see which one you have. You probably have the old style plug.
     
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  4. gregd

    gregd Active Member

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    Short answer is yes, but it depends on your comfort with doing electrical wiring, and comfort with technically violating the electric code.

    ** DISCLAIMER ** There are risks if you do this, so be warned. If it worries you, get an electrician to help. They aren't all that expensive, and their work adds to the value of the house.

    We have a 10-30 outlet in the garage for our dryer (so, likely an older home than yours). I created effectively a 2-slot outlet strip by buying a replacement dryer cord from the local big-box home store, and wired it pin-for-pin to a pair of new 10-30 outlets. The new dryer cord plugs into the wall (so I'm not modifying the house electrical), and the dryer plugs into the first new outlet. The car plugs into the second one (I have the 10-30 pigtail for the mobile connector). You would do the same with 14-30 cords and outlets. The outlets are mounted to the wall to keep everything more or less safe. Ideally put the wires between the new sockets into conduit. Be sure to use sufficiently heavy wiring between the sockets (#10), and also verify that the car is set to charge at no more than 24 amps (80% of the 30 amp circuit). You can make the wire between the sockets as long as needed (within reason) to get the second outlet closer to your car's charging port. Mine are about 10' apart, for exactly that reason.

    And, yes, be very careful not to run both at the same time. The breaker (at least, if you are lucky!) will trip. I leave my car plugged in whenever it's in the garage, and it WILL / DOES begin charging on its own as needed to maintain the battery. So be SURE to unplug or disable charging on the car whenever using the dryer, otherwise the car may (will!) decide to begin charging right in the middle of your laundry cycle. My car is a Roadster, and the charging cord has a very handy switch at the car to disable the charge pilot signal. I flick that off whenever doing the laundry. The outlets we are discussing here aren't very robust to things being plugged and unplugged frequently, so I'd either disconnect the car, or do something at your EVSE to disable the charging, whatever is appropriate, vs unplugging the EVSE from your new outlet.

    ** END DISCLAIMER ** For the record, I'm getting a new 14-50 outlet in the garage; electrician is scheduled for next week, weather permitting.
     
  5. AAARSINIC

    AAARSINIC Member

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  6. Rocky_H

    Rocky_H Active Member

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    Sheesh, the person right up front said he has a 14-30 outlet. Tesla has a 14-30 adapter. So no, I'm not sorry for downvoting those comments suggesting converting to 14-50 extension cords.

    Anyway, @nthebrk , there are a few possibilities here. This service from Quick Charge Power can lengthen the mobile connector that comes with the Tesla. They have a few different lengths available, but the longest at 30 feet costs $130. That solves the length issue easily, but would still require plugging and unplugging for your dryer.
    Tesla UMC extension

    I have seen the Dryer Buddy idea suggested before, but I don't recommend it. It is not an A or B type of transfer switch. Both are connected to the circuit at the same time, and there isn't anything that prevents them from both drawing at the same time, tripping your breaker. I would not want to rely on that as daily charging. Electric code is trying to keep one device to one circuit on these types of circuits for good reasons. But, they do have a 14-30 splitter one that is $142, so if you schedule the car to charge at night, that could work.

    With some electrical work (and cost), I think you can do that the right way instead of the Dryer Buddy way. From the 30A breaker, you would need to get a transfer switch so that it will select either of two 14-30 outlets so only one is connected at a time. That should be compliant with electrical code, but it would be a little inconvenient to have to remember to flip that switch from the car to dryer and back.

    What I might suggest as probably a best option is to check if your electrical service at your house can support adding just an additional 20 or 30A circuit? At 240V and even 20A, that might be not too expensive and is a good rate for overnight charging. You could get a Tesla wall connector installed on that, and when you do move, you can take the wall connector with you, which is still good to have.

    Or, if your daily driving is pretty low miles, you could maybe just get by charging from a 120V wall outlet for a year. Plenty of people do that with Leafs and other short range electric cars. Just because the Tesla has more miles doesn't mean you always use them every day. And maybe there are other charging resources in town if you do need to fill up a bit more than the 120V outlet would do overnight. If you have one of the 20A type of 120V outlets (called a 5-20), then Tesla sells an adapter for that kind to get a bit higher charging rate which would be well worth it. This page can be used to identify different types of outlets if you need to.
    NEMA connector - Wikipedia
     
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  7. msnow

    msnow Active Member

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    Sheesh did you ever overcomplicate things. All he needs is a 14-30 adapter and a Camco extension which can be reused on road trips after moving. He doesn't want to add circuits and do wiring in a house he's moving from. Also, not a good idea to put this on the same circuit as the dryer. My advise would be plug and unplug as needed. Keep it simple. ;)
     
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  8. mkspeedr

    mkspeedr Member

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    I bought a 50 foot cord and a couple of adapters. This allows totally flexibility.
     
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  9. S85D

    S85D Member

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  10. AAARSINIC

    AAARSINIC Member

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    I thought the drybuddy PLUS resolved this issue of double drawing.
     
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  11. Rocky_H

    Rocky_H Active Member

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    You call it simple. I call it dangerous, and that's why I cannot recommend that for daily charging. That Camco extension cord is a 14-50. So how are you suggesting using that? It seems like you and @S85D are confirming that you are suggesting to him to do it the unsafe way, by plugging the Tesla 14-50 adapter into that Camco 50A cord and then adapting the other end of it to the 14-30 outlet on the wall. That Tesla 14-50 adapter will think 40A is allowed to be drawn from that circuit and relies on you dialing down the current in the car to 24A or less. The car is supposed to remember that lower setting for that location, but there are way too many times that the current resets to 40A for several reasons: a software update makes it forget the setting, or the car loses track of its GPS location a little and goes back to the 40A default, or, or, or. This has happened plenty of times, and if you are lucky, it will trip the breaker. That is something that is maybe OK to have and use for a once in a while thing on a trip. And yes, I do have one of those cords and have used it a couple of times, but I would never recommend that to someone for daily charging use for a year or more. It's not reliable enough to be safe for your daily charging.

    This is exactly why people were so angry with Tesla not offering a real 30A adapter. You need that to correctly set the top limit of 24A for these kinds of outlets. And without that available, people start suggesting stuff like this, incorrectly using a 50 amp adapter for daily charging on a 30 amp circuit and relying on the car to remember a software setting, which gets accidentally lost too often, causing an overdraw and hopefully tripping a breaker rather than starting a fire. If he wants the lowest cost and no electrical work, to do this properly and safely, he would need to get the wire and build a 30A capable extension with 14-30 plug and outlet ends. Then, he can use the real 14-30 Tesla adapter to plug into it to limit the current. But, that plugging and unplugging every few days when you want to use the dryer is going to get old and cumbersome really quickly.

    The other methods I suggested are first of all more safe, and secondly, more convenient, but yes, they do cost a bit more.
     
  12. Rocky_H

    Rocky_H Active Member

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    Oh, you are quite right. I was reading through the descriptions of the regular Dryer Buddy. I didn't notice that there was a Plus version, which has that either/or lockout feature. Yes, that is a good option then, because it would let someone use the real Tesla 14-30 adapter and keep from double drawing the circuit. It is $281 for that double 14-30 version, though, and it probably wouldn't be needed when he moves, so it's money wasted. So I might start considering a wall connector at that point, depending on how much the electrical work would be, since he can still keep the wall connector and use it at the new house. If it's close to the panel, that might be less than $200, and having a wall connector is a nice bonus for the future.
     
  13. msnow

    msnow Active Member

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    Here is a 30 AMP Camco.
    Amazon.com: Camco 55197 30 AMP 50' PowerGrip Extension Cord: Automotive
     
  14. AndreSF

    AndreSF Member

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    I would go with NEMA 14-30 Tesla adapter, 14-30 extension DIY (dryer cord, plus 14-30R) and pluging/unplugging as needed. I don't see Tesla NEMA 14-30 adapter in the online store at the moment...

    Good luck!
     
  15. Rocky_H

    Rocky_H Active Member

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    Yeah, pretty good, but that doesn't have the kind of plug/outlet he would need. That is also for campers, so it is TT-30, which the travel trailer outlet. To use it, he would need two homemade adapters, one for each end, to convert it to 14-30.
    So yeah, if you're going to need to make adapters anyway, you might as well just make your own cord. The Tesla 14-30 adapters are not in the store right now because of the recall that they have going on at the moment. They are having to replace all of them that are out there, so they cannot spare any for new sales for now.
     
  16. AndreSF

    AndreSF Member

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    Not all NEMA 14-30 adapters need to be replaced. Newer models (with gray insert vs original black) are ok. I have one of those, and service center told me those are not going to need to be replaced.

    NEMA 14-30, 10-30, 6-50 Adapter Recall
     
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