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What are your most commonly used electrical outlets you charge from when away from home?


  • Total voters
    63

antdun

Member
Mar 8, 2018
74
100
Utah
Over many road trips I've assembled a flexible solution to charging my Tesla from varied electrical sources up to 50 feet away (15 meters) and I created a video outlining my solution which you can watch below. It's liberating for me knowing I can charge from varied sources of electricity especially where camping, or towing where supercharging is less common. This solution could potentially be expanded of course to charge from virtually all common outlet types. These are just the outlets I've run into so far. I'm curious to know what outlet types you have all charged from. What should my next adapter be?

 

miimura

Well-Known Member
Aug 21, 2013
6,550
6,360
Los Altos, CA
If you're going to include Supercharging, you should have included CHAdeMO too.

I have Mobile Connector adapters for 14-50, 14-30, 10-30, and 5-15 but I've never had to use them. I've always managed to find a Supercharger or J1772 station to use when away from home.
 
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antdun

Member
Mar 8, 2018
74
100
Utah
If you're going to include Supercharging, you should have included CHAdeMO too.
You make an excellent point. I'm primarily talking about level 2 charging using the mobile connector in this post and video, so I should not have included supercharging since it's not an "adapter". Apparently I can't edit the poll anymore. :( Otherwise I'd swap out Supercharging for the CHAdeMO adapter.

Like I said in the video I did a nearly 4,000 mile road trip with just supercharging and the 5-15 adapter. For road trips to populated areas and along interstate routes then that's all that's needed. That being said my other trip to Orlando which was nearly 6,000 miles it was primarily along interstate routes, but I still charged at people's homes because it saved me time not having to hang out at a supercharger. In Texarkana Texas there's even a supercharger in town and I didn't bother to go to it because it was more convenient to charge at the relatives home we were staying with and the energy cost was not significant. And if you pay for supercharging then charging at someone's home is cheaper.
 

Albert E

Member
Mar 21, 2021
12
2
Dallas
If you're going to include Supercharging, you should have included CHAdeMO too.

I have Mobile Connector adapters for 14-50, 14-30, 10-30, and 5-15 but I've never had to use them. I've always managed to find a Supercharger or J1772 station to use when away from home.
I am interested in charging at supercharges. Trying to go camping to Lawton Oklahoma from Dallas but I am finding no tesla supercharges but a supercharger in Lawton. It uses the chademo so I guess I purchase the one tesla sells, right? This is the first time I venture out so no nothing about charging away from home. Anything else I need? If we end up at a cabin with a wall outlet what would I need? I have a model 3 and on Tuesday we are having a model y delivered for my wife :) we are full converts :) but I am afraid that I am going to have to rent a car to do this trip and that is not something my wife expected when trading her ICE vehicle. Thoughts? Recommendations?
 

Albert E

Member
Mar 21, 2021
12
2
Dallas
I am interested in charging at supercharges. Trying to go camping to Lawton Oklahoma from Dallas TX but I am finding no tesla supercharges anywhere near Lawton. There is a non tesla supercharger in Lawton. It uses the chademo so I guess I purchase the adapter that tesla sells, right? This is the first time I venture out of town so know nothing about charging away from home. Anything else I need? If we end up at a cabin with a wall outlet what would I need? I have a model 3 and on Tuesday we are having a model y delivered for my wife :) we are full converts :) but I am afraid that I am going to have to rent a car to do this trip and that is not something my wife expected when trading her crappy ICE vehicle. Thoughts? Recommendations? What adapters do I need to purchase besides the ChaDemo adapter? Thanks
 

miimura

Well-Known Member
Aug 21, 2013
6,550
6,360
Los Altos, CA
I am interested in charging at supercharges. Trying to go camping to Lawton Oklahoma from Dallas TX but I am finding no tesla supercharges anywhere near Lawton. There is a non tesla supercharger in Lawton. It uses the chademo so I guess I purchase the adapter that tesla sells, right? This is the first time I venture out of town so know nothing about charging away from home. Anything else I need? If we end up at a cabin with a wall outlet what would I need? I have a model 3 and on Tuesday we are having a model y delivered for my wife :) we are full converts :) but I am afraid that I am going to have to rent a car to do this trip and that is not something my wife expected when trading her crappy ICE vehicle. Thoughts? Recommendations? What adapters do I need to purchase besides the ChaDemo adapter? Thanks
This trip doesn't look like much of a problem. I just plugged it into aBetterRoutePlanner.com and there is a Supercharger on the way in Henrietta, directly on the way from Dallas to Lawton through Wichita Falls. If you charge to 86% in Henrietta, you should be able to make it to Lawton and back to Henrietta.

If you have any access to a plug at the cabin, you just need the Mobile Connector that came with the car. Using a 120V wall outlet will make sure that you can add a little bit of charge and you won't have to worry about losing range while you're there.

 

doghousePVD

My grandfather’s car
Dec 3, 2018
650
600
New England, USA
Keep in mind the 5-15 120V charger adds only a trivial amount of energy. Overnight adds at best about 40 miles, depending on weather, Sentry off, car is not woken unnecessarily, etc. It mostly is a break even with vampire discharge.
 
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Ostrichsak

Active Member
Sep 6, 2018
3,628
4,196
Colorado, USA
Keep in mind the 5-15 120V charger adds only a trivial amount of energy. Overnight adds at best about 40 miles, depending on weather, Sentry off, car is not woken unnecessarily, etc. It mostly is a break even with vampire discharge.
Based on the average owner's commute, this "trivial" 40 miles would make it so that the average driver would need only charge once every 2-3 days. I would hardly call that trivial. I would recommend plugging in every night anyway if that's your only method just to be safe but the point is that it's more than adequate. Most vampire drain will be 10-15% of that rate which still makes charging every other day plenty for the average commute. As long as the owner's commute doesn't exceed the ~40mi round-trip by too much this solution is viable assuming the ability to recover whatever small amount above that that's used each day on the weekends.

We're so jaded by the faster options that this most universal method seems pointless by comparison but you'd be surprised by how many owners are functioning just fine on 15A/120v for daily use. For many users, it works just fine. For lots of users it would be cost prohibitive to add a 50A/240v to the point where ownership may not make sense. Often times it's due to the relation of electrical service to vehicle location or many other factors. It's doing a disservice to these potential owners to make it seem like 15A/120v can't possibly meet their needs if that's all they have available.

Sure it's not ideal but it's perfectly serviceable so long as you fall within and plan properly for the limitations of said solution. I still tell everyone I know who's thinking about getting one to plan for a 50A/120v if possible but there are other options if adding that is cost prohibitive.
 
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mociaf9

Active Member
Oct 18, 2018
2,884
5,957
CA
We're so jaded by the faster options that this most universal method seems pointless by comparison but you'd be surprised by how many owners are functioning just fine on 15A/120v for daily use. For many users, it works just fine. For lots of users it would be cost prohibitive to add a 50A/240v to the point where ownership may not make sense. Often times it's due to the relation of electrical service to vehicle location or many other factors. It's doing a disservice to these potential owners to make it seem like 15A/120v can't possibly meet their needs if that's all they have available.

Sure it's not ideal but it's perfectly serviceable so long as you fall within and plan properly for the limitations of said solution. I still tell everyone I know who's thinking about getting one to plan for a 50A/120v if possible but there are other options if adding that is cost prohibitive.
Totally agree with the underlying point. But for many of the people who are relying on 120V/15A, they could very easily switch to 240V/20A (or 240V/15A) because often times the wires to the outlet in the location they are using are already sufficient to provide this without need for rewiring. You can get up to ~3x improvement in effective charging speeds for basically the cost of a new two-pole breaker, a new receptacle, and a new UMC adapter for a NEMA 6-20 receptacle. Total project cost is maybe $35 plus the cost of the adapter.
 

Albert E

Member
Mar 21, 2021
12
2
Dallas
This trip doesn't look like much of a problem. I just plugged it into aBetterRoutePlanner.com and there is a Supercharger on the way in Henrietta, directly on the way from Dallas to Lawton through Wichita Falls. If you charge to 86% in Henrietta, you should be able to make it to Lawton and back to Henrietta.

If you have any access to a plug at the cabin, you just need the Mobile Connector that came with the car. Using a 120V wall outlet will make sure that you can add a little bit of charge and you won't have to worry about losing range while you're there.

Thank you for the advice.
 

Ostrichsak

Active Member
Sep 6, 2018
3,628
4,196
Colorado, USA
Totally agree with the underlying point. But for many of the people who are relying on 120V/15A, they could very easily switch to 240V/20A (or 240V/15A) because often times the wires to the outlet in the location they are using are already sufficient to provide this without need for rewiring. You can get up to ~3x improvement in effective charging speeds for basically the cost of a new two-pole breaker, a new receptacle, and a new UMC adapter for a NEMA 6-20 receptacle. Total project cost is maybe $35 plus the cost of the adapter.
Agreed. This is a great option with minimal investment of time and money if the infrastructure will allow & the owner is able to install or has access to someone who will do so inexpensively.
 

KD5MDK

Member
Oct 8, 2012
73
12
Longhorn Country
We're so jaded by the faster options that this most universal method seems pointless by comparison but you'd be surprised by how many owners are functioning just fine on 15A/120v for daily use. For many users, it works just fine. For lots of users it would be cost prohibitive to add a 50A/240v to the point where ownership may not make sense. Often times it's due to the relation of electrical service to vehicle location or many other factors. It's doing a disservice to these potential owners to make it seem like 15A/120v can't possibly meet their needs if that's all they have available.

Sure it's not ideal but it's perfectly serviceable so long as you fall within and plan properly for the limitations of said solution. I still tell everyone I know who's thinking about getting one to plan for a 50A/120v if possible but there are other options if adding that is cost prohibitive.
I bought my Model 3 in February 2019 and figured I would do 120v charging until I had a chance to get an electrician to put in a 14-50. I could charge at work if I wanted to (in the 1.5 months that was relevant for me) but most of the time I didn't and it worked just fine. Since then I've been fine with no additional charging except on long trips, and even with biweekly visits to state parks the only time I needed to Supercharge was once when I had made a long trip mid-week and hadn't charged since then so needed to top up before departing Saturday. It really is just fine, overall.
 

DeltaOne

Member
Mar 19, 2021
167
103
Mount Airy, MD
I'm only on day 4 of Tesla ownership, but 120 volt charging has been fine. We're retired, so no getting home late and having to leave early. The last two days the car has finished charging around 2 or 3 am, in plenty of time for anything we need to do the next day.

I did have a 240 volt outlet installed, but the NEMA 14-50 adapter I ordered from Tesla won't arrive for another week.
 

Ostrichsak

Active Member
Sep 6, 2018
3,628
4,196
Colorado, USA
I bought my Model 3 in February 2019 and figured I would do 120v charging until I had a chance to get an electrician to put in a 14-50. I could charge at work if I wanted to (in the 1.5 months that was relevant for me) but most of the time I didn't and it worked just fine. Since then I've been fine with no additional charging except on long trips, and even with biweekly visits to state parks the only time I needed to Supercharge was once when I had made a long trip mid-week and hadn't charged since then so needed to top up before departing Saturday. It really is just fine, overall.
This helps to verify the larger point I was trying to make: people who don't know much about EVs think that to own one means investing thousands of dollars in some sort of charging solution at home. I hear this a TON when I'm being bombarded w/questions. It's near the top of the list and before I owned them I, too, thought that I would need a $5k solution to charge up at home.

This is a thing of the past but keep in mind that most ICE vehicle owners are used to 4-8 year production cycles. Any advancements made will be showcased in the next "all-new model" which could be years away. This advance at a snail's pace but this is how most all consumers have come to know cars. In their minds, crap they read about last year is still valid and we who own Teslas specifically know better. We know that they've been knocking over hurdles month after month for a decade now. That's a lot of leveled hurdles.

The average consumer doesn't know this. I want people to know that you can literally walk into a Tesla dealer and drive a new car away w/o any previous planning or infrastructure just like you would an ICE car. It's what people have been doing for decades. Nobody worries about where the nearest gas station is when making an ICE purchase and I'd like this stigma to die around needing to do the same for EVs.

Of course you can always get better but the basic and most universally available solutions for charging will work for all but the heaviest of drivers. This is not a well-known fact in the general populace. People are always amazed when I explain that I've had the fancy charging stations sitting in a box because I bought them thinking I needed them but the adapters that come with the car and basic outlets have been plenty for our needs for a 2 (and in some cases, 3) EV car home.

It may not be ideal but when we compare it to driving out of your way on a day when you don't have the time to do so then standing in the bitter cold rain/snow at some sketchy gas station that was "on-the-way"ish to wherever you were now running late for while some sketchy transient asks for change which distracts you so you get gas all over your hand and are likely now the subject of the latest internet hacking credit card theft breach.... is it really any worse?

Again, I'm not saying that a small upgrade isn't a bad idea... especially something like the NEMA 6-50 for a few shekels. I just don't want to crap on how viable the standard and most universal solution is for most to stress that point. I'm not saying people here are I just see it a lot in the community of those of us who understand the platitudes a lot better than the average ICE driver who stumbles upon the same text because they care more than most to actually educate themselves on the topic. For most, that becomes an instant deal breaker when it takes something as necessary as energy to propel a car forward and improves it overall.
 

jboy210

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Dec 2, 2016
5,466
3,468
Northern California
I am interested in charging at supercharges. Trying to go camping to Lawton Oklahoma from Dallas TX but I am finding no tesla supercharges anywhere near Lawton. There is a non tesla supercharger in Lawton. It uses the chademo so I guess I purchase the adapter that tesla sells, right? This is the first time I venture out of town so know nothing about charging away from home. Anything else I need? If we end up at a cabin with a wall outlet what would I need? I have a model 3 and on Tuesday we are having a model y delivered for my wife :) we are full converts :) but I am afraid that I am going to have to rent a car to do this trip and that is not something my wife expected when trading her crappy ICE vehicle. Thoughts? Recommendations? What adapters do I need to purchase besides the ChaDemo adapter? Thanks
There are a couple of other adapters you can use. CrazyPostman's channel goes through his "fun" with the CCS chargers near Lawton. He really is a postman in the area and is really good at answering questions.
 

Dharmanos

New Member
May 13, 2021
1
0
Spring city PA
Most commercial 110 outlets are 20 amp. I got the 5-20 adapter and have used it quite a bit. I also added a T-blade adapter to my kit. Sometimes I have to dial down the charging from 16 amps to 15 but it’s still faster than 12 amps with the standard 5-15 adapter.
 

Tman317

Member
Apr 1, 2021
36
13
Indianapolis
I had 240V/20A in my detached garage for my saw. I just installed a second 6-20 outlet for charging. I think it should be sufficient. Funny thing is the feed wire is 10-2/wg which would allow 24A charging, however Tesla's 10-30 installation instructions indicate it needs a neutral wire and no ground required. That seems a bit strange since the 6-20 only needs a ground with no neutral. Also the wall charger doesn't use a neutral. Not sure why some charging setups would use a neutral and others not. Perhaps the 10-30 can be used with a ground wire not a neutral wire.
 

wws

Active Member
Aug 11, 2014
1,046
1,162
Northern California
I had 240V/20A in my detached garage for my saw. I just installed a second 6-20 outlet for charging. I think it should be sufficient. Funny thing is the feed wire is 10-2/wg which would allow 24A charging, however Tesla's 10-30 installation instructions indicate it needs a neutral wire and no ground required. That seems a bit strange since the 6-20 only needs a ground with no neutral. Also the wall charger doesn't use a neutral. Not sure why some charging setups would use a neutral and others not. Perhaps the 10-30 can be used with a ground wire not a neutral wire.

The obsolete 10-series and modern 14-series have a neutral so they can support appliances that use _both_ 120V and 240V. For example the range in your kitchen might use 120V for the clock and lights, and 240V for the heating elements. A 6-series is 240V only.

You should install a 6-30, rather than a 10-30. Tesla doesn't offer a 6-30 UMC adapter, but evseadapters does: NEMA 6-30 Adapter for Tesla Model S/X/3/Y Gen 2 – EVSE Adapters
 

dgpcolorado

high altitude member
Apr 25, 2015
2,688
4,052
The Western Slope, Colorado
At home I use a 14-50 outlet, usually with a Gen 2 MC plus modified 14-30 adapter (I cut off the neutral pin so that it fits both 14-30 and 14-50 receptacles). 24 amps at 240 volts (= 5.76 kW) is plenty for home charging. Haven't bothered to buy a 14-50 adapter for my Gen 2 MC but I have a Gen 1 MC with the 14-50 adapter.

14-50 receptacle and meter1578sf 2-17-16.jpg

^ Home 14-50 outlet (the meter was for my previous car, a LEAF, but I don't pay attention to it anymore). Installation cost of the 14-50 receptacle was about $120 by a professional electrician — I had him use 6 gauge wire. Could have done it myself but chose not to.

14-30 adapter with neutral pin removed2352crop 3-26-20.JPG

^ Gen 2 MC 14-30 adapter, for use in both 14-30 and 14-50 outlets. It limits current to 24 amps, which is convenient when using it with my TT-30 to 14-50 adapter. Tesla doesn't use the neutral pin for anything.


On the road, other than Supercharging (I've supercharged my car more than 550 times on road trips), I use campgrounds with 14-50 ("50 amp" in RV lingo) or TT-30 ("30 amp") RV pedestals. That modified 14-30 adapter plugs-in to 14-50 outlets or my old TT-30 to 14-50 adapter. I could buy a TT-30 adapter for my Gen 2 MC from evseadapters.com but don't really need it. I've charged my car at campgrounds dozens of times over the years — campgrounds are my favorite place to stay on road trips because they are inexpensive and I can start the day with a full (or mostly full on TT-30) charge. I especially like to camp at state parks because the campsites are usually nicer than those at commercial RV parks. To find campgrounds, RVparky.com is a good resource because it has excellent filters as well as reviews.

My Model S-60 can handle a full length air mattress in the back. If I don't want to pay for a camping spot for just a few hours I just sleep in the car at roadside rest stops, same as the truckers do.

I have a homemade 10-30 to 14-50 adapter to use with my parents' old-style clothes drier outlet but they moved and I haven't used it since. In more than 100,000 miles of Tesla driving, most of it on road trips, I've never used a NEMA 5-15 outlet.
 
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