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Public Charging Etiquette - Unplugging Teslas from J1772s

Unplug Teslas when all EVSEs are full?


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Please help me understand TMC unplugging best practices. I happen to live in an area where many houses are without power due to the recent storm in Virginia. Several of the public J1772 stations have been full and I have been unable to charge.

When Teslas are charging my understanding is that the port light flashes green until the Tesla is full and then turns solid green once the charge is complete. The only problem is that the port light goes out after a few minutes once the owner walks away.

I drive a Leaf and it is easy for anyone to see when my car is fully charged at any time. 3 solid blue lights on the dash mean the car is full. Here are the levels :

1 flashing 0-33%,
1 solid, 1 flashing 33%-66%
2 solid, 1 flashing 66%-99%
3 solid 100%

Why don't Tesla port lights stay on all the time? This would seem like an easy OTA update. Since Tesla wants to hide charging status should other electric car drivers just be able to unplug Teslas as needed?
 
Please help me understand TMC unplugging best practices. I happen to live in an area where many houses are without power due to the recent storm in Virginia. Several of the public J1772 stations have been full and I have been unable to charge.

When Teslas are charging my understanding is that the port light flashes green until the Tesla is full and then turns solid green once the charge is complete. The only problem is that the port light goes out after a few minutes once the owner walks away.

I drive a Leaf and it is easy for anyone to see when my car is fully charged at any time. 3 solid blue lights on the dash mean the car is full. Here are the levels :

1 flashing 0-33%,
1 solid, 1 flashing 33%-66%
2 solid, 1 flashing 66%-99%
3 solid 100%

Why don't Tesla port lights stay on all the time? This would seem like an easy OTA update. Since Tesla wants to hide charging status should other electric car drivers just be able to unplug Teslas as needed?
You should be able to tell if the car is actively charging by the Station indicators. I would never unplug a car unless it is completely finished charging. After that I would say fair game because the owner is being inconsiderate at that point.
 
You should be able to tell if the car is actively charging by the Station indicators. I would never unplug a car unless it is completely finished charging. After that I would say fair game because the owner is being inconsiderate at that point.

Most of the public ''free' stations I use are basic stations without a screen. I have no ability to know the current charge status. Why does Tesla hid this information?
 

AEdennis

Active Member
Jul 23, 2013
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959
Most of the public ''free' stations I use are basic stations without a screen. I have no ability to know the current charge status. Why does Tesla hid this information?

When I travel and charge at a Public Level 2 charging station, I put in a note with my number so that folks can contact me e.g. Need to unplug...
 
Teslas generally shldnt be hogging j1772s when other EVs will usually be more desperate for the charge.

I guess I am missing something because I am not understanding why a Tesla shouldn't be "hogging" a J1772 as compared to any other EV. Only once have I needed to charge at a J1772 and it was because I needed it and no other charging available in the area. I never thought for a minute that I would be considered as hogging it. ;-)
 

David99

Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
Jan 31, 2014
5,009
7,852
Nomad (mostly US)
This has been discussed many times over. What is fair? Who has priority? The car with the smallest battery, the car with the lowest battery level, the car that needs the most to get home, the person with the lowest income (when its a free station), the owner that has invested the most into solar power, the person that came first, the person that needs to charge the smallest amount, ...? Do you use a station if you don't really need it to show that the stations are being used or do you keep it free for others? Do you have the right to unplug someone based on your own needs over their needs?

You quickly see that there are many different and valid ways to look at it. There is no easy solution or simple rules. Just like in most situations in life, many things need to be considered and often a compromise is the only way to deal with it.

There is no simple rule. The only thing that really helps and solves all these issues is more charging stations so that none of it matters and everyone can charge.

To be a good person, leave a note with your cell phone number so if someone comes and really needs to charge, they can text you and you can give them priority. In many situations that's not practical. I'm not going to do that when I go to a restaurant with friends or to a show or movie.
 
Last edited:

bhzmark

Active Member
Jul 21, 2013
3,987
7,121
Hence my strategic use of the word "generally."
I guess I am missing something because I am not understanding why a Tesla shouldn't be "hogging" a J1772 as compared to any other EV. Only once have I needed to charge at a J1772 and it was because I needed it and no other charging available in the area. I never thought for a minute that I would be considered as hogging it. ;-)
 
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This has been discussed many times over. What is fair? Who has priority? The car with the smallest battery, the car with the lowest battery level, the car that needs the most to get home, the person with the lowest income (when its a free station), the owner that has invested the most into solar power, the person that came first, the person that needs to charge the smallest amount, ...? Do you use a station if you don't really need it to show that the stations are being used or do you keep it free for others? Do you have the right to unplug someone based on your own needs over their needs?

You quickly see that there are many different and valid ways to look at it. There is no easy solution or simple rules. Just like in most situations in life, many things need to be considered and often a compromise is the only way to deal with it.

There is no simple rule. The only thing that really helps and solves all these issues is more charging stations so that none of it matters and everyone can charge.

Why do Teslas hide the fact that they are 100% charged? If you are full I should be able to unplug. There is no good reason to dim the charging light on the port. This is especially true with power outages.
 
Why do Teslas hide the fact that they are 100% charged? If you are full I should be able to unplug. There is no good reason to dim the charging light on the port. This is especially true with power outages.
Nobody knows for sure but the general consensus is that so it doesn't attract attention.
 
All the public J1772's I've ever used have at least 2 idiot lights, power and charging.
That seems to be the case with the public EVSEs I use as well.

This local public EVSE does have a flashing light to show active charging.

Model S at Ridgway EVSE1991sf 3-1-18.jpg

When I'm using the only plug available I try to remember to put my "OK to unplug" frisbee with my phone number on my dash. Unlike in the big cities, where people fight over charge stations, the ones out here in the boondocks are 80% state funded (from a fund that all plug-in cars pay into via a special registration fee) and little used. I try to use them so that people see them getting used — I did help pay for them, after all.

It is a different world here than in cities with hundreds to thousands of electric cars, many of them short range and needing a charge, and dozens of Level 2 charge stations.
 

David99

Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
Jan 31, 2014
5,009
7,852
Nomad (mostly US)
And to me, that is just rude. A charging station is not meant to be a parking lot, just bcos it happen to be in one. (But then I'm not an owner yet.)

Public chargers are usually rather slow. You need many hours to charge a Model S/X/3. Going to a movie for 3 hours is well within the charging time. It's not rude to charge your car even if it takes longer. In my city they limit charging time to 4 hours which is fair. I never let my car sit for longer than 4 hours even if it wasn't charged as much as I wanted.
 
Public chargers are usually rather slow. You need many hours to charge a Model S/X/3. Going to a movie for 3 hours is well within the charging time. It's not rude to charge your car even if it takes longer. In my city they limit charging time to 4 hours which is fair. I never let my car sit for longer than 4 hours even if it wasn't charged as much as I wanted.


It seems rude and rather arrogant of Tesla and Tesla drivers to not let others know that the car is fully charged. They could be sitting all day like at an airport or work parking lot. I don't know if I have ever seen a note or 'frisbee'. Maybe we can make some to sell on TMC for example :

For Tesla drivers - common courtesy :

"My car is probably fully charged but you wouldn't know it so please unplug me if you need some juice."

For Leaf drivers :

"Your Tesla probably is fully charged so I unplugged you. When you see 3 solid lights on my dash you will know I am fully charged."
 
It’s not rude or arrogant. You seem to have a chip on your shoulder. I have a Leaf and a Model S, I’ve never thought about unplugging a Tesla, or a Leaf, that , to me, is what seems awfully arrogant.

It’s almost certain that at a public J1772 location that doesn’t have an indicator (do those really exist?? I’ve never seen one) that a Tesla is not fully charged because it takes for freakin ever to charge a Tesla at 30 amps. If they need the charge then they have a low battery and it’s going to take a very long time to get to full (or 80% or whatever it’s set to).

Don’t unplug. First come first serve rules when you have incomplete information otherwise.

-Jim
 
It’s not rude or arrogant. You seem to have a chip on your shoulder. I have a Leaf and a Model S, I’ve never thought about unplugging a Tesla, or a Leaf, that , to me, is what seems awfully arrogant.

It’s almost certain that at a public J1772 location that doesn’t have an indicator (do those really exist?? I’ve never seen one) that a Tesla is not fully charged because it takes for freakin ever to charge a Tesla at 30 amps. If they need the charge then they have a low battery and it’s going to take a very long time to get to full (or 80% or whatever it’s set to).

Don’t unplug. First come first serve rules when you have incomplete information otherwise.

-Jim

It seems like the issue is really between the Tesla driver and Tesla NA. If Tesla doesn't care to provide this information why should you care if you are unplugged?
 

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