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Would a Tesla make sense as an apartment owner with shared L2 charging?

I’ve seen past threads about this but feel it differs by situation. After test driving a model 3 I placed one on order immediately. Now I’m a bit unsure due to charging situation so I wanted to ask:

1. My apartment has 2 L2 chargers. 1 is occupied by a Nissan Leaf and the other is occupied by 2 different teslas who alternate.

The leaf is constantly parked there. I never see that stall open ever. I talked to building management about charging availability and apparently the owner of the Leaf is moving away this month. So probably won’t be an issue.

The 2 teslas are from a couple (one of them doesn’t live in the complex, but uses the charging since the other lives there). I know this because I asked building management.

Most of the time during Turo rentals I have been able to charge there. Usually if it’s not past evening it’s not taken up.

2. I have seen an electric car use a 120V in the garage, but none of the open parking spots has a 120V nearby. Also, building management could not tell me if it was allowed to use those outlets.

3. The building next to me is owned by the same property management company and I can use their chargers when they are open (9-5). They have 2 L2 stalls and I don’t know how often they are occupied.

4. There is also a blink charging place that isn’t a long walk with 1 stall but it isn’t free. $0.39 for blink members and $0.49 for non-blink members.

5. There is also city hall that is a 12 min walk that has 2 hours of free charging (2 L2).

6. And lastly there are 2 superchargers that are 15 min and 23 min drive away.

7. Since I live in a shared parking garage, if I left sentry mode on a lot of the time, I would probably lose a lot of charge. Would this be bad for the battery over time? Since it would be constantly discharging a good majority of the week?

I’m also considering turning it off while parked in my apartment to save on battery. And use it when I’m not there.

I also do not commute to work, I take a work shuttle. I use the car for the weekends and to get to the gym and stuff after work. The reason I don’t commute to work by car is because it costs $17 a day to park at work. The shuttle is free. My work does have L2 chargers.
 

Tam

Well-Known Member
Nov 25, 2012
11,064
10,066
Visalia, CA
...unsure...

If you want a Tesla that bad, you have just pointed out so many options to keep a Tesla even though some might be more inconvenient than others.

1. My apartment has 2 L2 chargers...
If your manager can make rules to accommodate all current and future tenants with the current 2 chargers.

All EVs must be arranged with management or a committee.

The allocations of how charging slots/time will be determined by the needs of all....

Management might want to ask EV tenants to contribute toward additional chargers...

2. I have seen an electric car use a 120V in the garage, but none of the open parking spots has a 120V nearby. Also, building management could not tell me if it was allowed to use those outlets.
Well, it's time to scout all the electric outlets and ask if only EV owners can be assigned to those.
3. The building next to me is owned by the same property management company and I can use their chargers when they are open (9-5). They have 2 L2 stalls and I don’t know how often they are occupied.
It's not a certainty until management can make rules.
4. There is also a blink charging place that isn’t a long walk with 1 stall but it isn’t free. $0.39 for blink members and $0.49 for non-blink members.
That's a nice compromise: More expensive than residential Time-of-Use Rate but cheaper than gasoline cars and comparable to Tesla Supercharger: $0.48 peak time, $0.24 offpeak time.
5. There is also city hall that is a 12 min walk that has 2 hours of free charging (2 L2).
That's a nice way to get exercise.
6. And lastly there are 2 superchargers that are 15 min and 23 min drive away.
Great backup solution. But first, work out with management so you can sleep/work and charge at the same time.
7. Since I live in a shared parking garage, if I left sentry mode on a lot of the time, I would probably lose a lot of charge. Would this be bad for the battery over time? Since it would be constantly discharging a good majority of the week?
It's wear and tear but I would not worry that it would be enough to shorten the life of your battery that much in decades and it would have zero effect on your 8-year/120,000-mile battery warranty.
I’m also considering turning it off while parked in my apartment to save on battery. And use it when I’m not there.
That sounds like a good plan if you don't plug your car.
...The reason I don’t commute to work by car is because it costs $17 a day to park at work. The shuttle is free. My work does have L2 chargers...
It's more expensive than free but it's not a bad price to charge your car at work for $17/day when you need to (since you might not need another charge for days).

In conclusion, you'll love your Tesla despite all of the above obstacles.
 
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tm1v2

Active Member
Oct 18, 2021
1,621
1,272
USA
@OliverD How upset and frustrated will you be if some evenings you can't charge at home?

Is there a supercharger nearby you can use as a backup when you can't charge at home?

How much does your building charge for L2 charging? How expensive is it per mile vs gasoline (with equivalent ICE car) or supercharging in your area?

Up to how many miles might you drive in a typical day when you use the car (not counting road trips)? Will you potentially be doing a lot of miles on back-to-back days and therefore *need* a charge some nights, or will you almost always be able to just wait an extra day or two to catch an overnight charging opportunity at home?

Are you planning to stay at your current home long term, or potentially looking to move anyways in the not too distant future?

What do you mean by "turning it off?" The car will always be "off" when parked of course. I'd definitely avoid unnecessary battery drains like Sentry Mode and Always Connected when parking overnight without charging.

This sounds doable but you really need to know your own tolerance level for dealing with those times when you need a charge and can't get it at home. If you'll be pissed and frustrated with the situation, don't do it.
 
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@OliverD How upset and frustrated will you be if some evenings you can't charge at home?
Not very upset, as long as I can charge there at least 1-2x a week.
Is there a supercharger nearby you can use as a backup when you can't charge at home?
Yes, it’s written in the post. One is 15 min away (but not open 24 hours) and the other is 23 min away (24 hours).

How much does your building charge for L2 charging? How expensive is it per mile vs gasoline (with equivalent ICE car) or supercharging in your area?
They don’t charge. It’s free. The rule is if you aren’t charging you need to GTFO the spot. But obviously the leaf doesn’t follow this rule (I think mainly because there aren’t many EV owners in my apartment until now, but who knows).
Up to how many miles might you drive in a typical day when you use the car (not counting road trips)? Will you potentially be doing a lot of miles on back-to-back days and therefore *need* a charge some nights, or will you almost always be able to just wait an extra day or two to catch an overnight charging opportunity at home?
Hmm I would say around 10-15 miles on weekdays and since I like to go out on weekends maybe like 30 miles. In the summer I plan on going on hikes in Seattle so that will probably require more miles. Like Mt Rainier natl park is 60 miles away. Or a road trip to Leavenworth is 70 miles away. But not counting all that I would say 10-15 on weekdays and 20-40 on weekends erring to lower end of that range.
Are you planning to stay at your current home long term, or potentially looking to move anyways in the not too distant future?
Nah I plan on moving whenever. I’m not attached to it. Also I may switch jobs, so the $17 a day parking isn’t permanent. I’m in my mid 20s so there’s a lot of time to move around. I do like my current apartment tho.
What do you mean by "turning it off?" The car will always be "off" when parked of course. I'd definitely avoid unnecessary battery drains like Sentry Mode and Always Connected when parking overnight without charging.
Turning off Sentry mode is what I meant.
This sounds doable but you really need to know your own tolerance level for dealing with those times when you need a charge and can't get it at home. If you'll be pissed and frustrated with the situation, don't do it.
Worst case scenario there are apartment buildings with dedicated spots. But Tesla is my dream car so I think it would be fine. Worst case scenario I sell the car for more money than what I had bought it for?
 

tm1v2

Active Member
Oct 18, 2021
1,621
1,272
USA
Sorry for missing the nearby superchargers in your first post!

I think you'll be fine with a Model 3. I say go for it!

I'll note that 23 mins each way just for supercharging would kind of suck (if the closer one is closed and you don't have an errand to combine with the supercharger) but it sounds like extra charging excursions should be pretty rare.

Also if it turns out you can use those 120V outlets, that will actually keep up with 10-30 miles/day no problem. Especially if you can let it start charging right away and not wait for off peak.
 
With your amount of driving I think you should be fine charging with the L2 whenever it’s available, which hopefully should be at least once or twice a week.

Keep in mind winters would reduce range so you would need to charge more when it’s cold.

On weekends when you need to go farther you can always hit up the superchargers on your way out and back into town if the L2 chargers aren’t available.
 
With your amount of driving I think you should be fine charging with the L2 whenever it’s available, which hopefully should be at least once or twice a week.

Keep in mind winters would reduce range so you would need to charge more when it’s cold.

On weekends when you need to go farther you can always hit up the superchargers on your way out and back into town if the L2 chargers aren’t available.
How bad is supercharging every week?

Also I guess maybe yeah best option would be to not use sentry mode in my garage. Worst case scenario I guess I’ll ask for my apartment cameras if something did happen.
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Moderator
Nov 28, 2018
14,685
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Riverside Co. CA
OP to answer your thread question, the answer depends on how many hoops one is willing to go through, or checks and balances. You already have all that worked out, so you at least know what you are signing up for.

I personally would not do it, but that doesnt mean I dont think YOU should. I have a very low tolerance for doing things that would make things more complicated for me, at least on purpose.

For full disclosure, I am a person who has a model 3 performance, just recently sold my wifes X3 and bought her a model Y performance, and even though I already had 1 tesla wall connector in my garage, put another one in, in power sharing mode, so that I can have both cars plugged in at the same time without moving the cable back and forth.

Anyway, you are right that if you use sentry mode, you will be using roughly 15-20 "miles" a day of range, just sitting there, so if you only drive on the weekend, monday - friday you likely will lose 75-100 miles with the car just sitting there. You also will be going from something like 90% to 20%, which people know but tend to forget when they are doing their range calculations.

The car also will also likely not get its rated range, especially when driven in short trips.

All that to say, you are right to plan on NOT using sentry mode when you are parked at home, and you may be charging more than you think / are planning to charge. Saying that, however, you already know where to charge, and have backup plans, so it sounds like something you want to make work. Its a great car, I still like mine (enough that I bought my wife a model Y as I said), but I personally dont have the tolerance to own an EV without being able to plug in at home. Plenty do, but that isnt for me.
 
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I am in a very similar situation as you- 3 shared free level 2 chargers and a supercharger a few minutes away. As long as you are a little more conservative with some of the features (turning off sentry mode like you suggested is a big one) I don’t think you’ll have any issues. I too have a very short commute and get away with charging once a week on the community charger, and if for some reason I am pressed for time just swing by the supercharger on the way home.
 
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Fellow Oliver I wouldn't really care about sentry mode it's not something for daily use it's for when you park somewhere unsafe. If someone keys your car and you see them who really cares the cop isn't going to hunt them down and they're not going to flash a card with their name and address. I put it on in parking lots when i'm out shopping incase there's a hit and run but when I'm at home it's not needed.
If you can get at least a 120 outlet somewhere you could get 55 miles back per night or so. I picked up my M3 and couldn't get my charger installed for a couple weeks. I did the 120v every night and I have a 100 mile commute. I slowly lost a little but grabbed a cup of coffee twice at a wawa to top off at a super charger for 10-15 minutes and had no problem making my commute in the morning.

Home L2 charging is fantastic but if you don't commute far and can at least get 120v regularly that would be nice. You don't need to go completely full everyday at a supercharger you could just work in your morning coffee or something. Honestly just 10-15 minutes per day or here and there gets you a lot of range.

Personally I wouldn't buy an EV if I couldn't plug in somewhere regularly. I probably would if I could get even 120v at home. it wasn't so bad even with my very long commute. So if you have access to anything and really want a tesla I don't think it's to bad. But only you can say what you'd put up with.
 
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Fellow Oliver I wouldn't really care about sentry mode it's not something for daily use it's for when you park somewhere unsafe. If someone keys your car and you see them who really cares the cop isn't going to hunt them down and they're not going to flash a card with their name and address. I put it on in parking lots when i'm out shopping incase there's a hit and run but when I'm at home it's not needed.
If you can get at least a 120 outlet somewhere you could get 55 miles back per night or so. I picked up my M3 and couldn't get my charger installed for a couple weeks. I did the 120v every night and I have a 100 mile commute. I slowly lost a little but grabbed a cup of coffee twice at a wawa to top off at a super charger for 10-15 minutes and had no problem making my commute in the morning.

Home L2 charging is fantastic but if you don't commute far and can at least get 120v regularly that would be nice. You don't need to go completely full everyday at a supercharger you could just work in your morning coffee or something. Honestly just 10-15 minutes per day or here and there gets you a lot of range.

Personally I wouldn't buy an EV if I couldn't plug in somewhere regularly. I probably would if I could get even 120v at home. it wasn't so bad even with my very long commute. So if you have access to anything and really want a tesla I don't think it's to bad. But only you can say what you'd put up with.
Yeah I’ll try asking the apartment if I can get a spot near a 120V outlet and use that. I’ll contact them tomorrow.
 
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Yeah I’ll try asking the apartment if I can get a spot near a 120V outlet and use that. I’ll contact them tomorrow.
Good luck. You definitely wont be disappointed if you can make it work especially in CA. I used to go to LA for work god damn is the traffic bad there I would have killed for autopilot at the time. I don't know how anyone makes it to work.
 
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If you just use the car for gym and weekends then it sounds like you won’t be driving too much to charge everyday.

Just use super chargers and your apt charger when you can.

I would also talk to management about charging time limits if the stalls are always taken by the same car
 

RayK

Safety Score 92 (Getting better after 400mi drive)
Apr 5, 2016
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Hmm I would say around 10-15 miles on weekdays and since I like to go out on weekends maybe like 30 miles. In the summer I plan on going on hikes in Seattle so that will probably require more miles. Like Mt Rainier natl park is 60 miles away. Or a road trip to Leavenworth is 70 miles away. But not counting all that I would say 10-15 on weekdays and 20-40 on weekends erring to lower end of that range.
Good luck. You definitely wont be disappointed if you can make it work especially in CA. I used to go to LA for work god damn is the traffic bad there I would have killed for autopilot at the time. I don't know how anyone makes it to work.
@OliverD Seattle, Mt. Rainier and (a) Leavenworth are all located in WA. Your profile say "Irvine, CA". Something does not compute.
 

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