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Supercharging availability?

Discussion in 'Model S: Battery & Charging' started by Vic4Model3, Aug 7, 2016.

  1. Vic4Model3

    Vic4Model3 Member

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    San Mateo Supercharger wake-up call has shaken my confidence on Supercharger availability while traveling.

    San Mateo has 8 SC slots which were all, not only fully occupied, but had a lot of Teslas hoovering around, me included. Even if San Mateo had 20 SC slots, that wouldn't be enough. I had enough charge to get home, so after my second unsuccessful attempt to find an open SC slot gave up and drove home.
    But my take-away was SC availability should not be taken for granted. Now I'm questioning an upcoming trip to Roseville and SC availability. SC availability seems like a big deal now.

    Anone else concerned about the impact of the Model 3 release on future SC availability, even though M3 SC will be an option?
     
  2. msnow

    msnow Active Member

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    Yes, absolutely.
     
  3. SoccerMan94043

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    Happened to me in Dublin three weeks ago on a Sunday; I've only tried to use an SC twice and the first time I got the last slot in Dublin. I guess the bay area is getting saturated and Elon may need a bit of focus back home.
     
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  4. Macbest

    Macbest Member

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    I'm very concerned about it. One of the reasons I went with a 90 vs a 60
     
  5. SoxFan2004

    SoxFan2004 Member

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    I tried to charge in Darien, CT and there was no availability and 3 cars waiting... Not good!
     
  6. Zythryn

    Zythryn MS 70D, MX 90D

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    I'm not concerned about the impact of the Model 3 nearly as much as the impact of people stopping to charge when they have enough range to get home.
    I wonder how many of the people there were locals stopping there because it is "free"?
     
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  7. dabbler

    dabbler Member

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    I haven't experienced this phenomenon here in the central states, WI, IL, IN, OH. It certainly is more prevalent in higher population dense areas. Northern Chicago / Highland Park have some SC access availability issues.

    I am still meeting people and explaining the whole "charging" situation whether it is at home, public or at an SC. People around many parts of rural Wisconsin don't know or have been "misinformed" about electric cars in general. I wish someone or some news service would educate people about this great concept of EV car ownership.
     
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  8. TaoJones

    TaoJones Beyond Driven

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    Not at all concerned about the impact of the Model 3 through 2019. Systemically, the network is vastly underutilized.

    The biggest concern at present is ICEing by our own.

    But there are enough threads about this.
     
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  9. Boatguy

    Boatguy Member

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    What's worrisome is the OP and other's use of an SC when it isn't needed. SC's are intended for long distance travel, not local charging. If you have enough battery to drive home with a comfortable reserve, there is no reason to be at an SC at all.

    From the Tesla website: "Superchargers are used for long distance travel"

    The OP lives in San Jose and was trying to use the San Mateo SC, only 25mi away. Perhaps it was just to try out the SC experience, which is certainly understandable for a new owner such as the OP (try the factory SC's on a weekend, they are even closer to your home than San Mateo), but clearly not every San Mateo SC user was just trying out the experience.

    When taking long distance trips I've only had to wait for a slot once, and that was for 15min in Rocklin 10 days ago when there were a bunch of cars driving home from the Gigafactory grand opening.

    Elon has already made it clear that the Model 3 will not come with free SC access, but certainly more SC's are needed to accommodate more cars. That said, my belief is regulation of "local" charging (e.g, within 50mi of home) would free up a lot of SC capacity.

    Tesla knows where we live, how much capacity in our batteries, and where/when we're using an SC. I think it is inevitable that they will limit SC charging to ensure compliance with the intended usage of Superchargers.
     
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  10. TaoJones

    TaoJones Beyond Driven

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    This false assertion persists and it is unfortunate. Tesla has committed to DENSITY as well as to DISTANCE for over 2 years now.

    I'm not sure if it's ignorance or willful persecution, but it needs to stop.

    Non-garaged locals have been, are, and will continue to be welcomed by Tesla with open arms.

    Further, and I'm sure it's the case in Northern California just as it is in Southern California, long and horrible commutes are not unusual. 75 miles each way is not unusual. Now, who might be interested in an EV with sufficient range? People with long commutes. Who are more likely to have long commutes? The non-garaged.

    And there you have it.

    The network is 97% underutilized.

    The Model 3 won't be a problem easily through 2019 and probably not even then. Just do the math. An average of an extra 1,000 cars per state per year is not a big deal.

    2/3 of homes in America have garages. The prevalent belief is that people are more lazy than they are cheap - and that those who have charging at home will use it to wake up each day with a full charge rather than to wait in line.

    Another funny thing about locals - they're generally smart enough to not get gas at the neighborhood Costco on Fridays or Sundays - you typically won't see them at local SCs on Fridays or Sundays for the same reason. But you will see tons of people leaving or coming back from out of town travel.

    No amount of poo-poo advocacy or handwringing will change any of the above or the clear and present concern that is an actual problem - and that's ICEing by our own. Everything else, including the persecution of non-garaged locals, is just noise, and is antithetical to Tesla's mission as well.

    The network isn't even half built yet, and that's just for openers. A few saturated SCs in areas of greatest density do not constitute a calamity, present or future. And persecuting locals who don't have garages won't help.

    ICEing by our own - primary, clear and present problem.
    Livery - a possible distant secondary problem as they can use density SCs 3x/day.
     
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  11. Boatguy

    Boatguy Member

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    If that was the case, wouldn't Tesla remove the references to "long distance travel" which are repeated throughout the discussion of Superchargers? And why, or how, could Tesla commit to provide free power to all owners which is your thesis?

    I agree that the the 1/3 of owners without a garage need a solution; I was one of them for over a year with my i3 charging on a 110v outlet, but I don't see any evidence, statements by the company, statements by Elon, or anywhere else that Tesla's answer to "no garage" is Superchargers. I see repeated references to "long distance".

    Where is the evidence of "open arms"?
     
  12. Az_Rael

    Az_Rael Active Member

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    This might actually make Model 3 users MORE likely to use the system when not "needed". If folks have to pay a fee, they will want to get their money's worth. I know if I paid, say, $2000, for the lifetime supercharger package for the 3, then I would be tempted to use them whenever possible. To get my money's worth.

    Even if I bought one of the hypothetical smaller packages, (that may or may not exist), I would want to use up ALL of my credits/time/whatever on the system.

    Now, pay PER use would not drive more supercharger traffic - then I would only use a supercharger when absolutely needed in my Model 3.

    It will be interesting to see the details of the packages when they come out.
     
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  13. TaoJones

    TaoJones Beyond Driven

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    Heh. The non-garaged don't "need" a solution - they *have* a solution as provided by Tesla today and it works just fine. Characterizing it as "free" is a canard, and tangential to begin with.

    Putting aside that the entire SC network has been paid for with ZEV credits (despite the weak leadership in CA), and will continue to stay abreast and ahead of demand, the fear concerning the Model 3 "deluge" is also misplaced.

    So back to garaged versus non-garaged for a moment. Of *course* the garaged should charge at home. And they do. In fact, most Model S/X owners don't use SCs with any frequency whatsoever.

    Most people who try to persecute the non-garaged perceive that the non-garaged are "getting away with something". At this stage of the game, we're all early adopters and Tesla's policy of inclusion is one that all parties would do well to adopt. That's the response I got when I called prior to purchase, and frankly it surprised me. Not only was I invited to use the (at the time) one SC in the county, but was told there were more coming. And sure enough, in 6 weeks, one became three and as we all know, the network isn't even half done yet. And yet, when we finally get L2 charging here, I'll be first in line for it. Why? Convenience. I'm happy to pay what I am sure will be an exorbitant fee for a dedicated parking space with a charger because I, like most people, am more lazy than cheap.

    Lastly, of *course* Tesla positions SCs primarily for distance use. In part, that's because the majority of the network is distance-oriented. Look at supercharge.info. Ask anyone who's visited 100 or 200 SCs how many times they've had to wait for a charge.

    Yet 97% of the handwringing and poo-poo advocacy is about the 3% of the network that is actually regularly utilized. Those would be the density SCs - and frankly the only ones at issue are the ones that serve both density and distance and some of those are in underserved areas (see the OC and North County).

    The problem I have with the blind persecution is that a) castigating the garaged is analogous to crafting solutions in search of a problem, and b) castigating the non-garaged is antithetical to Tesla's mission.

    And typically there is zero mention of livery. Livery will use SCs up to 3x/day. Your average local might use an SC 1-2x/week.

    For context, have a look at what Nissan just did with their free charging program. Many Model 3 owners will resemble Leaf owners who don't go out of a 50-mile radius. And Leaf owners now charge for "free" as well.

    All will be well. No abject castigation necessary. The vast majority of the garaged charge at home. The non-garaged are already self-leveling just as Costco gas station users are self-leveling. Most Model 3 owners aren't going to use SCs locally either. Last stats I saw showed that 90% of Model S users don't use SCs frequently. Let's figure high and say that 30% of Model 3 users will.

    30% of 50% of 500K by year end 2019 is 83K. Figure 40% in CA which leaves an average of 1,000 cars per state per year. And that's if 100% of US cars enable SCing - which is far from what is going to happen. However, since we presume that SCing can be enabled post-sale, we might as well plan for it.

    You either believe Tesla can manage that or you don't. I believe they will manage it just fine and without adding friction in the form of poo-poo.

    Systemically, the network is in excellent shape today and that will continue.
     
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  14. TaoJones

    TaoJones Beyond Driven

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    There's that word again. Depends upon how you define free.

    Many M3 owners won't use SCs and will happily not pay for it. Think of them as Leaf clones.

    Further, many M3 owners will in fact have "free" SC usage presuming the higher packages include it.

    One can certainly envision, as with AP today, a 30-day trial or some sort of annual plan.

    But what will not fly is poo-poo. People who say "Oh, I'll use SCs once in a blue moon." Actually, you'll use them perhaps 15-20 times during a single round trip from LA to Portland with time built in for sightseeing. Do that once a year for 5 years and exactly how much money do you save after 100 poo-poos versus just paying up front?

    Lastly, your point is well-taken regarding the garaged grabbing a quick top-off at an SC before heading home. This will lessen as activity increases. Again - you'll see usage at SCs primarily from distance travelers and from the non-garaged. And that's exactly what Tesla expects.

    The question in my mind is how much of a fire Elon and the Feds can light under private enterprise and municipalities to build out infrastructure in the next 4 years. Because by then it won't be just Tesla in the game. But Tesla will have the best network and the garaged STILL won't use SCs locally to any significant degree :).
     
  15. Canuck

    Canuck Active Member

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    Then you must have missed this...

    tesla-supercharging-note-1.jpg
    tesla-supercharging-note-2.jpg
     
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  16. msnow

    msnow Active Member

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    Not only this but I recall a tweet from Elon after the massive reaction to the M3 saying that the SpC network would have to be built out substantially to accommodate the growth. There's no doubt that in many areas it's underutilized but in the more popular areas and routes it may need to be increased.
     
  17. Boatguy

    Boatguy Member

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    Yes. Let's keep in mind the first post in this thread by the OP.
     
  18. AndreSF

    AndreSF Member

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    Yeah, Bay Area has a few of these locations IMHO, however, OP really did not need the charge, or he would have just stopped circling the lot, waited his turn and got the charge needed to continue his trip. Easy and convenient? Perhaps not as much as a completely empty station, but still doable.
    No need to panic, Sundays are busy travel days, plus locals, I guess, like to shop at Whole Foods near San Mateo Supercharger :)
     
  19. TaoJones

    TaoJones Beyond Driven

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    Bwhahahahahahaha. Oh, that's rich.

    It's one thing to get caught asserting that there's a problem with local charging by posting a picture of a distance SC during a holiday weekend.

    But for you to follow up that gaffe by now posting what has been roundly regarded as the worst public communication ever distributed by an intern at Tesla, and to do so as a response to my quote advocating for a lack of friction/poo-poo/pay-per-use has got to be the best non-sequitur yet.

    And since you posted that disaster of a letter, do refer to the part about occasional local usage. Because that's what non-garaged locals do - use SCs occasionally. I used to turn left at a light weekly to wait in line at the Costco to get gas - why in line? Because the pumps closed at a given hour. Now I turn right at the same light, charge and get work done while so doing. No line, no muss, no fuss. So simple.

    That letter served as a great reminder for the garaged to not be asshats. But as you will also recall, the distribution of that letter was an unmitigated failure that resulted in lots of apologies being issued from SvC managers.

    Did the letter go to livery? We don't know - but it should have. Did it go to the garaged who thought they'd skate and not install chargers? No way to know. But it did go to people who had never used SCs or if so only rarely.

    Meanwhile, the non-garaged will continue to use SCs judiciously and generally at non-peak times. And we will continue to educate referred new owners who have garages to line up a 14-50 or HPWC install at least 30 days prior to chariot delivery (accounting for permit(s) and such), and to remember to switch rate plans a billing cycle early (which is to say on time) as well.

    And through it all, there will be an exclusionary minority who will opine that the non-garaged shouldn't buy EVs. At whom, especially now with Nissan's doubling down with their "free to charge" program, I will continue to point and laugh - and with great amusement and pity in the process.

    Now, with that said and in the spirit of equal time, here's a bone for those concerned about the garaged not charging at home - which again, by any measure, is a valid concern except that it's not supported by much other than anecdotal evidence. Two garaged friends, whose families have 5, count 'em, 5 Model 3 reservations and they're not done yet, each asked why they should bother installing chargers as they both live within a few blocks or miles of SCs. You can imagine the conversation that ensued - at the end of which they each now have an appreciation for the value of their time and for the peace of mind and, wait for it, the enhancement to domestic harmony that at-home charging will bring.

    For you see - the #1 initial concern voiced by spouses (after the money thing) was "What if we run out of battery/charge/electricity?" The smiles that crossed their faces when they realized they could wake up with a full charge each morning and not have to pump gas ever again (bonus) would light up a room. And just like that, the one-time cost of installation was not a big deal.

    Most garaged locals won't use SCs just as they don't use SCs today. And one of the interesting things will be to see how many M3 owners elect to not SC-enable their cars at all. Because half of the aforementioned 5 reservations were "granted" because the M3 will either replace a Leaf or be a 2nd car in an SUV/minivan household.

    Tesla already has a scalable model and can build SCs ad libitum to meet demand.

    What will be interesting is to see, finally, who emerges as #2 in promulgating better infrastructure. Right now, it looks like Nissan with their NRG/evGo partnership. Whole Foods nearby now has ChADeMo/L2 pairs, and Costco has 8-10 new L2s that I *think* are NRG/evGo. Add to that the excellent AeroVironment full-strength, fully-functional ChaDeMo unlimited use plan for $19.95/30 days, and you may see M3 owners opt for that instead of SC enablement. Presuming of course that the cars are unlocked to allow ChaDeMo use without having to enable SC use (which seems entirely doable).

    None of this takes into account faster charging and larger batteries, either. In 5-10 years, people will wonder what all of the fuss was about. "Oh, Grandpa - you had to plug in a cable yourself to charge the car? That's so last decade!"
     
  20. ZBB

    ZBB Emperor

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    We just completed a 4600 mile road trip that touched 9 states and one Canadian province. We charged at 29 different Superchargers (plus 3 CHAdeMOs and a few HPWCs and J1772s, and one RV Park).

    At nearly all Superchargers we were the only car charging, a couple had 1-2 others and plenty of open stalls. The only one that was full was Dublin -- and we pulled into the last open spot (so no waiting...)

    I am not concerned about Model 3 growth. Tesla has shown they will add capacity in areas that need it...
     

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