I remember when I bought my first car. Of course, it came from the dealer with hardly a mouthful of fuel, so my first stop was a fuel station. This is where I wish I had read the manual, as my fuel filler cap was a strange one. Putting the key in and twisting didn’t help, neither did twisting the actual cap. But after a few minutes of embarrassment I finally got it open.
I knew how to fill the car because I’d seen my parents do it thousands of times. But what would I have done if my car was electric and I was at a charger? This is where these guys come in! For a lot of people, the Model 3 will be there first electric car, so let’s go through how to charge it in the video below.
This is the easiest way of charging your Tesla. Just look on the map in the centre screen and they’re shown as red and pale red dots. The pale red dots are the ones you can’t reach on the charge you have, the red ones are the stations you can. If you click on an individual dot, it will tell you information about the station for example how any of the chargers are being used and the amenities available at the site.
Level 2 Charger
This isn’t very common due to the slow rate of charge. You’l more than likely get around 15miles per hour of charge. Some of these also charge you to use them – so use these sparingly as a last resort. These don’t show up on the in-car map, but you can find these by using the app ‘PlugShare’.
The Act Of Charging
Superchargers will simply plug into your Tesla, just make sure you know how to open the charging port. On the Model 3, you simply tap the left side of the rear light which covers the port. If you’re using a general charger, for example a Level 2 charger, you’ll need the Tesla adaptor before you plug it in. You’ll also need to make sure you’ve paid if necessary.
Why You Shouldn’t Charge Your Battery to 100%
Lithium Ion batteries – the type you find in your Tesla – don’t like to be fully charged. This will reduce the lifespan of your battery and therefore reduce range. Teslas let you set a cutoff while charging, so instead of charging to 100% you can charge to 80 or 90 instead. I guess you’re now wondering why Tesla let you charge the battery to 100% if it damages it. Well, they don’t. When your battery says 100%, it’s more like 95-98. They’re good like that.
If you’re driving your Tesla daily, then follow the car’s guidelines and charge it to 70-80%. If you’re doing a one off long haul, then feel free to charge it higher than that. Just don’t make a habit of it.