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Question about different superchargers, how to tell them apart, and limit charging current.

elptxjc

Member
Dec 15, 2019
752
143
El Paso, TX
Hey gang, I already did a long trip on the new LR, so I have some experience with superchargers already. The ones I encountered on the highway looked the same, but didn't charge the same, even though we were by ourselves in all of them. Fastest charging was from 100+ to 140+ kW. And the ones in Austin charged from 60+ to 74+. And that's my first question: How many different chargers are out there? And how the heck can you tell them apart? I saw no labels or anything physically anywhere, and neither the app or car say what their charging rate is. I understand the As and Bs will cut it in half if 2 cars are charging, but it'd be nice to know in advance their charging limit.

My second question is I've read about even faster superchargers, like 200 something kWs (250?). I haven't seen any yet here in TX, but seems like a crapload of current, which can't be good for the battery. Nor do I see the need of ever needing such fast charging, so if I encounter any, and don't need to charge that quick, can you limit the charging thru the car? I can see the 'limit charging' button in my house, but it grays out when supercharging, so need to know if there's a trick to enable limit charging, and what amount is considered safe for the batteries (150kW?).

And finally, since I have free supercharging, and if I'm able to limit supercharger current, what would be a level that wouldn't damage the batteries if you do it more often than trips? I wouldn't mind watching a movie at a supercharger (2+ miles away from home), rather than home, where I could set the rate to maybe 50A max? Or the equivalent kW, which should be like 12kW, since 32A at my house shows as 8kW. Curious about that. Not that I'd do it all the time, but just curious :). Thank you.
JC

Thank you.
JC
 
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jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Nov 28, 2018
8,115
8,975
Riverside Co. CA
No, you can not limit the rate at which a supercharger charges yourself. It bypasses the onboard charger and charges the battery directly and the supercharger controls the amount of power it delivers.
 
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Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
6,097
7,069
Boise, ID
And that's my first question: How many different chargers are out there?
There are basically about three general types:
"Urban" The pedestals look way different, so they are easy to identify, and they top out at 72kW. Here's a picture:
Supercharger - Playa Vista, CA (LIVE 6 Nov 2020, 14 urban stalls)
"Version 2" These are the ones that are like 120 to 150kW max, and they do have the A and B sharing on each number.
"Version 3" These are the ones that are the 250kW max, and they are 4 on each cabinet. I think they use A, B, C, D?

can you limit the charging thru the car?
No--never. Superchargers are to get cars filled and move. They are to be quick in and out and you don't get to control or slow down the charging speed ever.

And how the heck can you tell them apart?
If you select on a Supercharger on the car's map, it will tell you, based on the max charging power available: 72, 150, or 250kW. But if you want an easy internet resource, this user-maintained Supercharger map at www.supercharge.info shows every Supercharger, and even ones under construction, and if you click on one, it will show details including what type and power level.
 

GtiMart

Member
Nov 13, 2019
724
585
Quebec City, Canada
Don't worry, if you don't supercharge too often it doesn't matter. And you won't see 250kW much anyway, it requires a very low battery state and high temperature, it doesn't last long. Even 150kW doesn't last that long. Look for charging profiles if you want to see the power curve depending on your battery percentage.
 

elptxjc

Member
Dec 15, 2019
752
143
El Paso, TX
Thank you very much guys. Makes sense you can't restrict power on superchargers; they'll continue to get busier and busier over time. So won't use them much, except when traveling. So what's the deal with the 250kW ones? Do they get split 4 ways if all 4 stalls are used? Curious about that. By the way, those should be brutal for the batteries, no? Hope I never have to use one of those. Even the 150kW seem like a lot. I like the 72kW ones in Austin; they're mild by comparison. Ha ha. Oh, and the map was great, but I'm sad there's nothing pending where I needed them, which is between Amarillo and El Paso; there's like a 400-mile empty square there, and no plans to build even one in the middle (Ruidoso, NM, or even Roswell, NM). Oh well. Hopefully other companies will build a rapid charger there.

Oh, one question about that guys. What's the deal with those 'destination' superchargers? You have to open the charge port from the car, right? Then what? Attach the J1772 adapter to the cable, and then the car? And to remove it? Do those have a button like ours? And does the adapter lock to the cable, and then the adapter to the car? If somebody can provide details, it'd be great, in case I need one. There's only one of those in Ruidoso, NM, which supposedly charges at 16kW, which is not that bad.. but I'd only use it if we go there, not traveling thru (like to go see my daughter to Amarillo). If we take the Tesla to see my daughter, we'd have to take a 120-mile detour thru Albuquerque; geez. Thanks again for all your help.
 

DaveRZ

Member
Nov 19, 2019
163
219
Murrieta, CA
Sounds like you're really concerned about protecting your battery. A lot of people here are. The fact is though, Tesla (and the rest of the industry), does tons of testing and constant tweaking to keep batteries working well. While conventional wisdom would be that car companies will only care about the components lasting the length of the warranty, it will serve no one if the Internet is alight with thousands of people with batteries dying prematurely. In other words, it's in everyone's (EV makers) best interest to keep EVs in a very positive light.

As others have said, and you've probably now noticed, supercharging does not occur at a fixed speed. It varies SIGNIFICANTLY depending on the state of charge of your battery, and the temperature of the pack, the cables, and the charging equipment. So when you see "250kW", that's only when all the ducks are lined up. In reality, your pack will need to be "hot" (around 120 degrees), and it'll need to be nearly empty (about 10% left). Then you'll only see those speeds until the pack reaches around 30%. Tesla is very good and managing the temp of the battery and only allowing the amount of charge that the batteries can safely handle at their current temp. I doubt most people will ever see 250kW during the winter, the battery doesn't get that hot. I personally have only seen 250 during the warmer months.

There are MANY, MANY people whose main method of charging is supercharging. People who live in apartments or condos, for example. No shortage of those here in Southern California. So they go fill up every few days. I haven't heard people complaining about it being a problem.

250kW is a lot of power, but remember that's divided by ~4400+ individual cells in the pack, and only for a few minutes before dropping down. The whole time the heating/cooling system is ripping full blast to keep all the cells at the right temp to receive the power. You really don't have to be concerned about supercharging. Do it when you need to, otherwise charge at home/work under normal circumstances.
 
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DaveRZ

Member
Nov 19, 2019
163
219
Murrieta, CA
To use a J1772 charger, just open your charge port (from touchscreen, from app, or by simply pushing on the cover when the car is awake). The J1772 plug has a manual pushbutton latch to unlock it (its very obvious when you see it). Snap the tesla adapter onto the J1772 plug Then plug the thing into your car. Do whatever you need to do to start the charger (this part varies by the equipment manufacturer, or if its electronically controlled by the owner - it MIGHT be automatic, but not always). When done charging, you can stop charging from the app, touchscreen, or the charger device itself (again, varies by manufacturer). Unplug everything (DON'T forget your adapter!). Very simple.
 

Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
6,097
7,069
Boise, ID
Oh, one question about that guys. What's the deal with those 'destination' superchargers?
Messed up questions here--hang on:
1. There's no such thing as a "Destination Supercharger".
2. All of the next sentences after this one you are asking about about how to use J1772 charging units, and @DaveRZ did answer all of that very well.
3. But the "Destination Chargers" you are asking about are not J1772. That's a program Tesla did to give actual Tesla wall connectors to hotels and such. They have the Tesla handle with the button. You don't use an adapter.
 

rrolsbe

Member
Feb 18, 2017
220
126
Albuquerque
Just a quick comment. I think Tesla in the past supplied some. probably not many, Destination/Wall Connectors to hotels with the J1772 interface. So it could be possible you might need to use the adapter even on a Tesla supplied/branded charging device.
 
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golferguy

Member
Jan 30, 2021
18
4
SE Florida
For clarification, you won't get max SuperCharger kW unless your car is around 20% SOC or less. So if you pull into a V3 charger at 50%, you won't see 200+kW at a V3, maybe 70kW? (can't recall exactly but it isn't much higher).

Same with V2, assuming no power sharing.

V2's won't always give you ~140kW, even if you pull in at say 15% SOC. Due to power sharing. A's and B's share. So try to avoid pulling into one that is sharing/in use already. If possible.

V3's don't share. That's their big advantage, In my experience.
Assuming a V2 without sharing and a V3, from 20% to 90% charging, the V3 is only about 5 mins faster. Due to power tapering off near the end which they both do. But if the V2 was sharing, then the V3 can save about 15 mins.

And outside/battery temperature will matter. Cold is no go good. I have seen on screen warnings at below 50F about reduced range during SuperCharging.
 

elptxjc

Member
Dec 15, 2019
752
143
El Paso, TX
To use a J1772 charger, just open your charge port (from touchscreen, from app, or by simply pushing on the cover when the car is awake). The J1772 plug has a manual push-button latch to unlock it (its very obvious when you see it). Snap the tesla adapter onto the J1772 plug Then plug the thing into your car. Do whatever you need to do to start the charger (this part varies by the equipment manufacturer, or if its electronically controlled by the owner - it MIGHT be automatic, but not always). When done charging, you can stop charging from the app, touchscreen, or the charger device itself (again, varies by manufacturer). Unplug everything (DON'T forget your adapter!). Very simple.
Thank you very much. The only point you didn't touch is how to unlatch the Tesla adapter from my car. Does it latch to the car, or not? If yes, I assume you need to pull the trunk mechanical cord, right? Thank you. The rest was very clear; thank you :).
 

wws

Member
Aug 11, 2014
926
947
Northern California
Thank you very much. The only point you didn't touch is how to unlatch the Tesla adapter from my car. Does it latch to the car, or not? If yes, I assume you need to pull the trunk mechanical cord, right? Thank you. The rest was very clear; thank you :).

If you are using the J1772 adapter: press and continue to hold down the release button on the J1772 plug. You should hear the car unlock the adapter. Then pull both J1772 plug and adapter out of the car in one motion. Then separate the plug from the adapter.
 
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