There are several things you should know about charging your Tesla at home
How to Charge
Charging is easy for anyone who has a garage or carport with electric service. I’ve been driving electrically for four years. My first electric car was a Chevy Volt. I got it in 2017. I could have bought the Bolt EV, but I was chicken so I went with the Volt plug-in hybrid. It was nice getting my first 50 miles on any given day by electricity. I used gas only after the battery ran down. Most days, I didn’t use any gasoline. My gas mileage, according to my app was around 200 miles per gallon. I never bothered to get a 220-volt level 2 charger for my garage. An ordinary 110-volt circuit worked fine with the charger that came with the Volt. Even when the battery was fully discharged at the end of the day, it would be full by morning.
When I bought the Tesla, since it was during the pandemic, I did the same thing. I just plug the Tesla into the 110-volt wall socket using the charger that came with the car. You gotta remember that if you don’t drive much, you don’t have to worry about not having enough time to fill the battery by morning. Once the pandemic ends, I’ll get an electrician to put in a 220-volt plug for the Tesla. The Volt can stay with its 110-volt circuit.
People who live in an apartment and who don’t have access to an outdoor electric socket probably shouldn’t get an electric car yet. Eventually, there will be infrastructure available for you, but not now. Once you start driving electric, you’ll never want to go back.
How Long Does it Take to Charge?
The time needed to charge depends on how much you drove during the day and how much you expect to drive the next day. If you didn’t drive at all, something that happens often during the pandemic, it doesn’t take any time at all to charge. Tesla recommends that you not charge to 100% unless you’re about to set out on a long trip. I set my car to charge to 80%. I have my charge cable plugged in to a 15 amp circuit, and the car is set to draw 12 amps. My screen tells me that the battery is gaining 6 miles of range for every hour of charging. So with the 110-volt circuit, the Tesla charges at about the same rate as the Volt. When the pandemic ends, I’ll get an electrician to wire up a 60 amp circuit to the circuit breaker box, and I’ll install a level 2 charger. That will allow me to gain around 30 miles of range for each hour of charging. The state of Maryland and the electric company will cooperate to give me a tax break that will save me about 30% of the cost of installing the level 2 charger.
What do you need?
What you need depends on what you already have. Remember, we’re talking about someone who lives in a house with either a garage or a carport. If you keep an electric dryer in or near the garage or carport, just use the charger that comes with your Tesla. It has the adapter for a 110 volt receptacle, If you have a dryer circuit close to or in your garage, just buy the proper adapter from the Tesla store and you’re in.
What does it cost?
Otherwise, you’ll need an electrician to install the proper circuit for a 220 volt receptacle near the place where you plan to park the car. Then you can still use the charger that comes with the car, or you can spend about six hundred dollars and buy a wall mounted charger. As far as what the electricity will cost, it’s less than gasoline. This website estimates the cost of electricity needed to charge a Tesla.
What it says is that it costs around $3.00 to get 100 miles of electricity for a Model 3 and around $4.24 to put 100 miles of electricity in a Model X. So if you’re not getting around a hundred miles to the gallon of gas, electricity is cheaper than gas, and you don’t need to go to a gas station. You don’t even need to bother with charging stations unless you’re on a road trip. You just plug in when you get home, and your car is charged to 80% in the morning.
Henry Farkas is a retired country doctor. He bought his Tesla Model 3 in the middle of the pandemic.
Don't miss out!
Subscribe to our newsletter to be the first to know about Tesla's upcoming features and new software updates.
Tesla introduced a wrap-around ambient lighting strip to its new Model 3
If you look up ambient lights for Tesla, you'll see several ads for third-party light kits. Perhaps this is why Tesla added its own Ambient Lights feature to the new Model 3. So, let's get enlightened.
Tesla's ambient lights are thin light strips that are embedded in each of the vehicle's doors near the top edge. It also curves around the dashboard near the windshield, giving passengers a near 360-degree light effect.
Tesla new ambient light feature is available on the new Model 3 (2024+), and will be available on the Cybertruck in a similar manner. With a refresh ongoing for the Model Y, known as Juniper, it will likely also have ambient lights. That just leaves out the most luxurious flagship vehicles, the Model S and X, for now.
The Model S and Model X could be due for a minor refresh that would not only add ambient lighting, but also include a front-bumper camera that the Cybertruck has and the new Model 3 is expected to have in the near future.
Tesla introduced a wrap-around ambient lighting strip to its new Model 3
The ambient light settings allow you to light up the interior in a color that reflects your mood or preference. Under Controls > Lights > Accent Lights, you are handed the freedom to choose virtually any color to adorn the interior of your Tesla.
You have control over whether the ambient lights are on, off, or set to an "Auto" setting, though not fully clarified, seems to promise intelligent lighting adjustments akin to our control over dome lights, offering a reduction in reflections during drives.
While the ability to control the brightness level seems missing, Tesla did include color presets, letting you curate a series of your favorite colors.
It should be noted that the changes are confined to the light strips on the doors and dash, steering clear of the footwell lights and other interior lighting.
With Tesla, we can be assured there will be enhancements to this feature in a future update. In fact, the Tesla community is already busy coming up with useful suggestions. Some owners thought Tesla should take advantage of the lighting to provide driver feedback, such as automatically changing the ambient lighting to a red hue when there's a vehicle in your blind spot. Tesla could also glow the light strip on a door if it's not closed properly, or use the lighting to provide feedback when Sentry Mode is enabled.
Other uses could be more fun, such as cycling the light through various colors when the 'Rainbow Road' easter egg is activated.
Ambient Lighting in Action
While the possibilities are endless and Tesla engineers will surely have fun coming up with creative uses for the feature, the biggest improvement we can hope for in the near future is the ability to adjust the light intensity.
Tesla's new Model 3 received a host of exterior and interior upgrades
Tesla outdid itself with the refreshed Model 3, known as the Highland. Despite all the fantastic upgrades, something is missing - the Performance version or perhaps the Plaid. The letter "T" has shown up on vehicle certificates in Europe, and despite Elon Musk's sense of humor, it is unlikely this is a Mr. T reference.
Deciphering the 'T'
A new document shows the new Model 3 Performance will have a dual motor
eivissacopter / X
Diligent scrutiny of the European Type Certificate, issued by the Dutch vehicle authority RDW and shared on the TFF Forum, revealed a subtle yet pivotal alteration — including the letter 'T' in the eighth digit of the Model 3 Performance's VIN.
This seemingly minor detail, indicative of the vehicle's motor/drive unit type, sparked curiosity and speculation on the forum. Could it be a tri-motor setup to usher in a new Plaid version of the Model 3? This vehicle has already got endless amounts of zip, but three motors? May The Schwartz Be With You!
This could also explain the Model 3+ badging that was spotted during the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) in China inspection of the refresh. However, the regulatory filings highlighted just two distinct variants of the car: a rear-wheel drive (RWD) with a 194 kW motor and an all-wheel drive (AWD) dual-motor setup that combines to deliver a formidable 331 kW of maximum power.
Initial conjectures leaned towards the possibility of a tri-motor setup, drawing parallels with the Plaid variants of the Model S and Model X. However, a deeper dive into the certification document clarified that the Model 3 Performance retained its Dual Motor setup, dispelling the possibility of a tri-motor upgrade.
Strategic Enhancements: A Glimpse into Potential Upgrades
Given the documented specifications, it becomes plausible that Tesla has strategically enhanced one of the dual motors, potentially aligning it with the advanced motor found in the Model S/X Plaid. This modification is poised to augment the top-end speed and acceleration of the Model 3 Performance, addressing its comparative limitations in extended races against traditional gas-powered supercars.
Meanwhile, the Model 3 refresh has become the new Bigfoot of the roads of North America, with rare sightings posted on social media. However, it appears the continent is excluded from the initial launch of the Model 3 Highland. Internal communications within Tesla suggest North American enthusiasts might have to exercise patience until 2024.
TeslaFi is a service that logs your drives and charging sessions so that you can later refer back to them. We highly recommend checking them out if you use your car for business trips and would like to keep track of reimbursements, if you like to see how much you spend on charging or if you just love statistics. View their about us page and see everything they have to offer!
The EV Universe newsletter reports distill more than 100 EV news sources into a 10-minute read every week. We cover both Tesla and the rest of the EV industry. Join over 3,000 EV geeks like us and subscribe to the free weekly newsletter here.
Tesla Android Project enables you to run Android apps in your Tesla. The platform is Open Source and you can deploy it on your own Raspberry Pi 4. Consider supporting the initiative by donating or purchasing the Compute Module 4 Bundle that delivers the best experience. Get $20 off by using the code: NotATeslaApp