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Supercharger Etiquette

ps83v18

EVentuallyEVeryV
Mar 12, 2021
106
112
Mississippi
So .... new owner here. Been to a couple superchargers so far.

I think I basically understand that it’s best to choose a stall that is not adjacent to another vehicle, to avoid sharing power and thereby slowing both of us down.

But unsure of which stall to choose when all alternating spots are taken. I assume whichever I choose will result in sharing with my neighbor ...... and slowing them down or possibly annoying them. So what is the recommended approach?
  • Random?
  • Park next to car with no driver present?
  • Avoid parking next to cars where driver is giving me the stinky eye?
  • Interview each driver to find out who is just about done?
On one of my supercharging sessions, I was the fifth car to arrive at an 8-stall charger. I randomly backed in next to someone. They sort of looked at me ..... maybe smiled a little ..... not sure ......... maybe they just noticed my nice fresh temporary tag .............. but unhooked and drove off after about 5 minutes. I noticed later that on the other side of me, there was no one in the car. Maybe that would have been a better choice?

Is there an approach that is widely accepted?
 

Sophias_dad

Supporting Member
Jul 29, 2018
1,125
1,039
Massachusetts
I have never been to a busy supercharger, but I'd think given the choice between being in the B spot next to a person actually waiting in their car and the empty car, I'd pick the B spot next to the empty car. The person waiting is probably in a hurry, while the person away from their car is off grabbing dinner or shopping or something. After the first 30-40 minutes of charging or so the charge rate is likely to have dropped enough so you adding in as a B-user won't affect the A user anymore.
 
Last edited:

Chisale

Member
Sep 28, 2019
229
213
Ohio
I agree with Sophias_dad. For their reason and for another. The person sitting in the car is likely to leave soon. Otherwise they would probably be doing what the others are doing. Walking around and getting a soda or something.
 

ZippyDC

Member
Dec 2, 2019
37
21
Nevada
If you parked next to a spot with no one there that means the car will be there for a long time. This also means that you will be sharing with this car for a long time and with slow charge.

Wouldn't you rather use the spot next to someone that is leaving soon....the spot with the driver in the car?

Bottom line is there is no right or wrong answer to it and I would not feel guilty using any spot.

Sometimes I just leave the car to plug in and get in the car to watch Netflix.....half an hour or more.
 

jpfive

Supporting Member
Oct 31, 2019
502
472
Pensacola, FL
One thing I just learned the other day are the spots you don't have to back into should be reserved for Teslas towing something (as they would be unable to back into a spot).
That never would have occurred to me, but it makes sense. Where is that written or posted? I've been driving Teslas for two years now. I've never seen one with a tow - though I know they're out there. I think a better solution might be to take whatever's available, especially when the station is crowded. Yield it for one who is towing, or if one shows up after you hook up, go over and communicate to them how long you will be - and that you will direct them in when you are finished, or when a back-in spot opens up for you.
 

wynnek

Member
Feb 15, 2021
47
27
33190
That never would have occurred to me, but it makes sense. Where is that written or posted? I've been driving Teslas for two years now. I've never seen one with a tow - though I know they're out there. I think a better solution might be to take whatever's available, especially when the station is crowded. Yield it for one who is towing, or if one shows up after you hook up, go over and communicate to them how long you will be - and that you will direct them in when you are finished, or when a back-in spot opens up for you.
Go to about 9:15
 
Oct 31, 2019
245
316
Georgia
When all alternating spots are taken, I try and spot the car with folks in it and who appear to be getting ready to go - idea if their charging profile is tapering down.

I’ve experimented with charging next to older Model S/X versus 3/Y, and I’ve had more success getting charge rates above 75kW immediately when charging next to older Model S/X. Downside is they are usually charging longer, while the 3/Y folks are in and out in 15-20 mins.

Just my observation.
 

jpfive

Supporting Member
Oct 31, 2019
502
472
Pensacola, FL
Go to about 9:15
Thank you very much for the helpful video. One of the things I love about this forum.

Something that I still find confusing is which numbers are paired. To start with, I avoid parking adjacent to another car. Then I note the charge rate. If it is reduced, I get out and walk the stalls to see the numbering pattern and try again if open stalls allow it.

I have to say, though, that when I am travelling, and at an interstate SC station, I will use a drive-in stall if there are no others available, and no tow/bike-rack cars waiting. After all, we are all trying to get somewhere. If one of these cars show up in the meantime, I will communicate my intent to them to vacate when another stall opens or to alert them when I have reached the lowest charge level that allows me to resume my trip. I don't consider that to be unfair. At local/community supercharging sites - which I rarely use - it now becomes convenience charging and I would probably see that differently. In fact I'm sure I would now that I have seen the video. Thanks again for the information.
 
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Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
6,271
7,324
Boise, ID
Something that I still find confusing is which numbers are paired. To start with, I avoid parking adjacent to another car. Then I note the charge rate. If it is reduced, I get out and walk the stalls to see the numbering pattern and try again if open stalls allow it.
Ah, yes, it helps to know and tell people about how the pairing actually works with the numbers and letters. I see a lot of people keep repeating not to park next to another car, but that's not always correct.

Each number corresponds to one of the charging cabinets, and the A and B share the power on it--always. But the physical placement of the stalls depends on how the contractors decided to install them. So in some locations, you will see them in a row like this:
1A 2A 3A 4A 5A 1B 2B 3B 4B 5B
Seems like another sensible kind of order, right? Got all the A's first, and then all the B's. But that means that 2A and 2B, which share power, are 5 spaces apart, rather than next to each other. These kinds of layouts are a minority of locations, though, so I think a lot of people just haven't seen them yet, so keep saying "next to each other", because that's all they've seen.
 

Needsdecaf

Active Member
Dec 16, 2018
1,173
1,494
The Woodlands, TX
Ah, yes, it helps to know and tell people about how the pairing actually works with the numbers and letters. I see a lot of people keep repeating not to park next to another car, but that's not always correct.

Each number corresponds to one of the charging cabinets, and the A and B share the power on it--always. But the physical placement of the stalls depends on how the contractors decided to install them. So in some locations, you will see them in a row like this:
1A 2A 3A 4A 5A 1B 2B 3B 4B 5B
Seems like another sensible kind of order, right? Got all the A's first, and then all the B's. But that means that 2A and 2B, which share power, are 5 spaces apart, rather than next to each other. These kinds of layouts are a minority of locations, though, so I think a lot of people just haven't seen them yet, so keep saying "next to each other", because that's all they've seen.

Yeah, the Supercharger I most frequent in Corsicana TX is laid out in an L shape. It's a little goofy. Took me a few to figure it out. It's laid out like this:

..................................1A 2A 3A 1B 2B 3B


4A

4B

5A

5B


The confusing part is that you drive in from either ends of the L, so the first chargers you see are 5B or 3B.
 

DanDi58

Member
Jun 22, 2020
917
696
Dayton NJ
I went to the SC in Littleton MA this past Saturday. It had 9 of the 12 stalls filled, with the 3 empty spots being just random. I just picked one and backed in. No idea which car it was paired with.
 

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