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removing wall charger connector from stranger's car to charge my own car. Possible?

Discussion in 'Model 3: Battery & Charging' started by coolmanfever, Dec 27, 2019.

  1. coolmanfever

    coolmanfever Member

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    I drove to a high end mall in my area yesterday. There is a parking space reserved for Tesla cars in the basement of the mall because Tesla sale center happens to be in the mall. I see lots of model 3 parked there with wall connector charger plug in with fully charged battery to its set limit. My battery was low and I was hoping I can use one of wall connector chargers but they were all plugged in stranger's car. I wanted to unplug one of stranger's charger away from his car to charge my car. But these questions ran through my head to stop me from doing so:

    1. will sentry mode be activated and start recording when I attempt to unplug stranger's charger way from his car?

    2. will I be able to unplug the charger without stranger's keycard?

    3. Will the Tesla App alert the stranger once his charger is unplug?
     
    • Disagree x 4
  2. Sherlo

    Sherlo Member

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    Interesting that a 4th question didn’t enter your mind:

    4. Why do I deserve to unplug someone else’s actively charging car just because my “battery is low”?

    Do you mean their car was done charging and now they are getting charged idle fees to remain?
     
    • Like x 4
  3. coolmanfever

    coolmanfever Member

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    cuz his car is fully charged? Anything wrong sharing free public electricity? It's like borrow someone's outlet in starbuck once his phone is fully charged?
     
    • Disagree x 4
  4. ucmndd

    ucmndd Well-Known Member

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    He said specifically the vehicles were not charging.

    Seems obvious they’re talking about a HPWC / destination charger, not a supercharger.

    OP to answer your question, no, you can’t remove the charging cable if the car is locked. It is locked in the port.
     
    • Like x 2
  5. Sherlo

    Sherlo Member

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    Ok, gotcha. Took it that this was a SC (not free public) and they had set to 100% limit but not fully charged yet.

    Your call on how you want to handle the free public chargers.
     
  6. coolmanfever

    coolmanfever Member

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    Thanks. I am referring to silver wall connector charge offered for free
     
  7. Sophias_dad

    Sophias_dad Supporting Member

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    1) if sentry mode is enabled, it'll record you even walking near the car... without any regard to whether you touch the charge cable.
    2) >maybe<... if its pretty cold outside, the charge port unlocks when its done charging.
    3) if its actively charging and the button is pressed, charging will stop momentarily and the app will notify the owner. I don't think it'll unlock. If its done charging and is cold enough to leave the port unlocked, the owner won't be notified of the removal(although they would have been notified of the charge completion)

    4) You really shouldn't go unplugging the chargers of others. In this case(their car has finished charging), its probably okay but I still wouldn't. At the same time, I wouldn't leave my car connected to a public charger if its done charging, either.
     
    • Like x 1
  8. davewill

    davewill Active Member

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    He mentioned that there was a Tesla store there. I've noticed at my local store, the staff tends to just leave cars plugged in all the time. In fact, they don't even pretend that the plugs are available to owners. They have cones and tape up to block access.
     
    • Informative x 1
    • Like x 1
  9. eprosenx

    eprosenx Active Member

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    I wish that Tesla’s had a visual indicator on the car to tell folks if they were done charging or not.

    There are scenarios where it is acceptable to unplug others cars when they are done (I am thinking work charging situations where it is more cooperative). At least I should be a setting. I don’t really get why the icon by the charge port goes off on its own after a few minutes. Perhaps Tesla decided that calling less attention to the car was a good idea while charging.

    I am not sure it applies in this scenario, but in general I would like to see the etiquette evolve to allow taking a charging whip from a vehicle that is finished charging to charge your vehicle if the whip reaches to another spot. That seems like an efficient use of resources.

    There are also scenarios where I would be happy to give up the charge cable to someone else who really needed it even if I was not full. There is a place I frequent with free charging but I never *need* to charge when there. I have considered creating a sign saying “I am opportunity charging, feel free to take the whip if you need to charge”.
     
  10. bpjones

    bpjones Member

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    Like @davewill said, I would bet that those spots are reserved for the Tesla Store to power their test drive fleet and are not intended nor available to the public. That’s how they work in my area as well.

    Yes, you’ll be recorded. No, you won’t be able to disconnect the charger while the car is locked. Yes, a push message will be sent alerting the owner that the charging has been interrupted.

    In summary, not a good idea to mess with other people’s property.
     
    • Like x 2
  11. Sophias_dad

    Sophias_dad Supporting Member

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    Not clear why you need one on the car... the HPWC has the dancing green lights, and even J1772 bases seem to have a light indicating whether they are actively charging.

    I agree that it would be nice to have a setting whereby the cord would unlock when done, or even before done(optionally)
     
    • Like x 1
  12. ucmndd

    ucmndd Well-Known Member

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    A few times when I’ve parked in destination spots where I knew I was going to potentially be there longer than I needed to actually charge, I’ve left a note with my phone number in the window asking people to text me if they need to charge and I would unlock the charge port remotely from the app. Only had someone take me up on it once.
     
    • Like x 4
  13. eprosenx

    eprosenx Active Member

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    Yeah, the scenario would be random J1772 stations that are not very obvious as to charging status. I think the ones at my datacenter show as “charging” any time it is connected to my car, whether or not it is done charging or not.

    The Wall Connector is obvious as you point out...
     
  14. Akikiki

    Akikiki A'-Lo-HA ! y'all

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    There was a sign there that stated "Free public charging"?

    OP, since you already helped us by telling us there's a Tesla Store in that mall, those were probably demo cars for test drives. And even it those were privately owned cars plugged in, unless you have the car owner's permission and the Tesla store employee/manager's permission, you have no business "helping yourself.". That's EV charging etiquette.
     
  15. Akikiki

    Akikiki A'-Lo-HA ! y'all

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    There are common sense procedures that you can adopt and maybe it will rub off on others in your area. Place a sign or placard in the window of your car with info such as when you started charging, when you expect this charge to be complete and maybe your cell phone number. Encourage the next charging person to call your cell and request you unlock your charge port so they can remove the wall connector or supercharger cable.

    If its at work, you should gather everyone in a huddle and get agreement among the users on rules for unplugging each other's cars and how to get the car unlocked.
     
    • Like x 1
  16. Matsayz

    Matsayz Active Member

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    I read a post earlier today with a similar idea, the owner charges regularly at a free charger (HPWC) and has his cell number in the charge port door for when the car is done charging and someone else wants it. They just text him and he unlocks the charger.

    I thought it was a neat idea but also... just go unlock plug your car when it’s done. The masses will have to figure this out and it’s going to get ugly before it gets better.
     
  17. Akikiki

    Akikiki A'-Lo-HA ! y'all

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    #17 Akikiki, Dec 27, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2019
    Like this: Sorry its so small. Pulled it off the site where I had it made. Hope its useful. I've given away my last one, so I don't have a larger one to take a fresh pic of.
    charge card.jpg
     
    • Like x 1
  18. mat.

    mat. Member

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    • Like x 1
  19. eprosenx

    eprosenx Active Member

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    Thanks for the link to that. I had seen it before. I want to make a few tweaks.

    First off, optimally it would have a Tesla shaped cutout. :)

    Second, for a Tesla on the opportunity charging one there may need to be instructions on not trying to remove the plug since it is locked in (J1772 handle can be removed from the adapter though)

    I also disagree with the “never unplug another EV” note. In public charging locations I am OK with folks unplugging a J1772 handle if you can be certain the other party is complete with their charging and you need it. There is no reason to monopolize a spot if charging is complete. Frankly, that person is being a jerk by taking up a spot after being done charging. (obviously this assumes there is a safe place to park)

    I also don’t see the point in limiting your charge. If you are plugged in and have remaining battery capacity you should be taking a charge. Sitting there tying up a spot and not charging is silly. What would make more sense is to limit your *time* at a charger by moving your vehicle. If a high use spot, only charge to what you need...

    So I love the concept and the hangers, but I guess I would like to modify them slightly.
     

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