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Charging with 110v outlet

I'm getting my MS in a few weeks! does anyone have any experience charging primarily with a 110v outlet? I don't drive more than 20mi/day on avg, and I rent my house and am debating whether or not to install a 240v outlet or not, as i may move in the near future. Any advice much appreciated!

If you drive <20mi/day you should be ok. During the work week I charge only at work during an 8hr shift from a 110 outlet. I only live 6 miles from work. I usually get ~30 miles of charge in 8 hours.

According to Tesla looks like about 3.5 hours. Although that calculator shows 120v not 110v.

I've had my S for a week, and used a 110v for a few days until my NEMA 14-50 was installed. 110v doesn't cut it. Trust me, you will be driving your S a /lot/ more than just to and from work. Get the 240v NEMA 14-50.

Load up once a week at a high-power chargespot, and "hot the fort" at home with the 110.

Duh. "hold the fort"

Obvious solution is to start with the 110v, see how it works for you for a few weeks and if its not good enough get the 240v outlet installed.

Are there any LevelII charging options in your area? You could lean on public chargers to bridge the gaps if more miles are needed etc.

You should be fine. I have been living with 110V for a couple of weeks. More info on my blog:

You should also consider climate. If its really cold where you live, less power will be available to the battery. But I would try the 110 first. You can change later, and Blink and Chargepoint get you 20 mi per hour for a buck.

And you probably will drive more... its so fun!

Agree with others that you will want to drive more after you get your S. I lived with 110V for a week, you can expect about 25 miles back overnight at about 2-3 mph. Even if you don't need more than that, you will be cutting it close and it will be in the back of your mind. So much happier with my NEMA 14-50, it was liberating.

Reidcarolin. IMO, I recommend installing a Nema 14-50. The 110V will just cover your daily trips with overnight charging . The day you decide to take a longer you will understand the need for 240V charging. I took a 90 mile trip and plugged in at a 110V and it took 20 hours to add 40-50 miles of range! MY home charging takes 3-4 hours to recharge 90 miles of range. The best $500 I ever spent.

You won’t always drive just 20-30 miles in a day.

@reidcarolin's problem is he rents the house.
110V is soooo slow!
Do you have a dryer plug?
That is still a challenge. You need an adapter for the dryer outlet, not easy. You also probably need an extension cord. Yes, it is safe, if you buy one that can handle the current. Lots of forum discussions on outlets, dryer plugs, extension cords.

We used a 110 plug at a friends house and got 3 miles/per hour of charge. we didn't drive our car much while there so it was fine..

If the landlord will let you, even if you spend money for a 14-50 outlet that you won't take with you, it shouldn't be that significant an expense compared to the car.

You should be able to get the 240V outlet installed from $250-500. Well worth it in my opinion, especially considering the price of the car.

I too, could survive day-to-day with just 110V outlet charging. However, there could be those days when you do end up driving 100 miles. What about when friends or family are in town and you're showing people around, giving them rides etc? What about the weekend you're doing a home project and you end up making several trips to the store? Or you're going shopping for something big and "permanent", like furniture, and so you want to drive around and actually look at things in a bunch of different stores?

110V isn't going to cut it in those situations.

I am also charging at 110 and I'd like to understand why Tesla advertises 5m/h even though it seems that most using 110 get 3m/h - as I do. I'd based some decisions on 5, and while 80% of that was quite workable 60% is cutting it close enough that it weighs on my mind and I find myself "warning" people about (my) reality. That can't be good for Tesla.


You could live with the 110v but you better have a nearby public charging station somewhere you don't mind hanging out....a bar or restaurant where you can kill an hour or two occasionally because as everyone has noted here, you are just going to (1) drive this car more than you think and (2) drive more aggressively given its so much fun and that will burn more of the energy up. And trying to catch back up to a full charge at 3 miles an hour when you are half empty is a full weekend of being parked at 110v.

@david.cheney - the 5mi/hr rate is in ideal miles, just like the 62mi/hr for the HPWC. You probably have your display set to rated miles, and with roundoff that gets you to 3mi/hr. Also, it depends on the exact voltage you have.

@xbill, looks like I'm gonna be spending weekends at the bar, at least till I get 220 ;)

If you have access to two different 120V receptacles which happen to be on different legs of the breaker panel, then you could build an adapter that would more than double the amount of power you can charge at. Basically you would get two 25' 12/3 extension cords, chop off the receptacle ends, wire them into one NEMA 14-50 receptacle. You would end up being able to charge at 240V, 16A if the two circuits were on 20A breakers, as opposed to 120V, 12A now. So 3.8kW versus 1.4kW charging...

Any reason why you are charging at 120V?

@shop, I am a renter at a place with a detached garage 60 feet from the house, with 15 feet of asphalt and several extents of concrete between. Using 220 was not a plan B.

Tesla's page (linked in my post above) says simply this: "110 V / 12 A 1.4 kW 5 MILES OF RANGE PER HOUR OF CHARGE" (their CAPS). They do not use the word IDEAL nor qualify the 5 in any fine print.

If I bought an ICE vehicle and got 60% of the rated mileage - while driving conservatively on the flat highway at 75 degrees - you can bet I'd be unhappy.

I trusted their claim at 5. I left 20% wiggle, and I can even live with it down 40% from what I had expected - but customers "living with" 60% of claim is NOT gonna build your market.

I also understand that I am working on the lower edge here. Clearly I reached when I bought this - I did buy a 40 - and perhaps I've simply "adopted" too early.

What else electrical is in the garage? I'm wondering if there are two circuits that you can use to make a home made 240v adapter by plugging into two different 120v receptacles.

Also, is the plug you are plugging into protected with a 15a or 20a breaker?

@shop, thought it was 20 but nope, only 15 (yeah I am giving up on an adapter). Not seeing a separate circuit but this thing is not labeled clearly so I'll look more thoroughly later. Or maybe I can convince the neighbor :)

potentially useful link to an 2x120->240 adapter

Those 2x120V adapters are nice. A bit on the expensive side. I actually am halfway through building a 120V to 240V adapter (terminates in a NEMA 14-50 end) with two 25' extension cords, so it'll reach 50' between the plugs. I was going to abandon it as I realize I really needed/wanted a heavier duty one to also handle TT-30 plug ins. I'll sell it to you for cost if you find you can use it.

An electrical panel that isn't labeled properly? Say it isn't so! I swear electricians do it on purpose so they get called more often. Do hunt around for another circuit - even a yard plug on the exterior of the house or garage. It would end up doubling your charge speed.

@shop - my local codes require the panel to be labeled -- when I had my main panel replaced, I told the electrician not to bother as I would generate my own printed labels, but he said the inspector would fail the install if they weren't labeled when he came.

@david.cheney - I'm sorry you feel mislead - talk to Tesla about it, so at least they will update their website to avoid future confusion. You can probably also sell your car for more than you paid for it (after the tax credit) since you can't buy a 40 any more, though it might not cover the sales tax that was paid.

Anyone tried those 2x120 adapters? And can you plug them into outlets on the same circuit? Ie a top/bottom outlet? I'm guessing not.

No you can't use a 120x2 adapter on a duplex plug. The two receptacles have to be on different circuits (breakers) and each breaker must be on a different 120V leg.

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