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Barstow Supercharger

Barstow Supercharger

I travel frequently between Camarillo and Las Vegas. The Barstow Supercharger is key to my success in making the trek in a timely manner. I have noticed that on numerous occasions there have been as many as seven (7) Tesla's there. The problem. There are only four (4) charging stations. Secondly, when all four are taken, the charging to the vehicle can be as low as 75 miles/hour. Not a Supercharge at all.

Recommendation:

Build more Superchargers in this location with higher capacity to charge at the 285+/hour. Primm will not help me, as I will never make it from Camarillo.

Sam

Tâm | 13. April 2014

@sam

Excellent point.

By the way, what time and day of the week that you've experienced wait at Barstow Supercharger.

NKYTA | 13. April 2014

I asked this in another post, but are there still chalk line indicating that Tesla might expand to more bays in the back of that parking lot? It looked like chalk lines for at least 6 more spots...

Thanks.

NO2PTRL | 13. April 2014

Sam, thanks for the post, I am moving to Oxnard, on the harbor, and will have an even longer drive to Barstow. I did not know that the more vehicles that are charging the lower the charging rate, that is crazy.
That is the first time hearing of that, has anyone experienced that at other stations?

Like Tam asked, what days do you normally travel to Vegas and back?

NKYTA, I hope that you are right and I will check when I go up soon.

Burt Court | 13. April 2014

Just tonight was discussing this very SuperCharger. As a guy who has been going to Las Vegas since 1958 (actually Lake Mead) and who used Barstow twice last week, I saw the very problem you are experiencing. LA to LV and back is one of the heaviest traveled, touristy (touristie) freeways in the country, especially on week-ends and especially on three day holidays. Barstow will NEVER work until many, many more stalls, with lots of power are installed. And worst of all, they have somehow steepened the Baker Grade from Primm to Mountain Pass.

Tâm | 13. April 2014

@Sterlingllc1

It's well known, but if your Delivery Specialist doesn't inform you then you'll have to find out the hard way in real life.

Maximum kW / used bays

Each supercharger is usually hooked to 2 bays.

Such as Bay 1A, Bay 1B.

1 active car charging in bay 1B then that car gets 120 kW maxium.

If then there's another car just drove in and hooked to bay 1A, then the maximum kW that each could get is 120 kW / 2 = 60 kW.

SamO | 13. April 2014

Was at Barstow today and it was truly a shit show.

All 4 bays were full when I arrived. Two more people arrives 10 minutes after me so there were three of us waiting.

Charging speed never got over 195mph and it's making this trip a bit difficult.

Please Tesla.

Tâm | 13. April 2014

It could be that it's only busy during tourist time and idled most of the time.

In that case, the Engery Delivery may not show that it's so busy and hell. It may show that total Barstow usage is even less than Oosterhout in the Netherlands!

Thus, you need to tell Tesla not to look at total energy usage but also at owners' real experience.

Thus,if you could all please officially document your experience to:

Ownership@TeslaMotors.com

NO2PTRL | 13. April 2014

Tam,

Hell with the Delivery Specialist, this needed to be explained during the sales process when they where raving about charging 150 mile in just 20 minutes.
NO ONE IN THE STORE EVEN HINTED AT THIS.

These charging stations are looking more and more like the weak underbelly for Tesla.

#1. Charging time goes up when more than one car is charging!
#2. Not enough stalls for busy routes!
#3. Equipment in disrepair!
#4. ICE cars parked in charging stalls!
#5. Cars that are charged, owners are absent!

I know that it is free, but that was always included in the sales process and literature.
Tesla really needs to figure this out, you have 30,000 owners depending on these.

I for one would pay what is needed to hire a valet at every station, to jockey cars and maintaining equipment.

jjaeger | 13. April 2014

This is the funniest post in a long time. Thanks for the belly laugh.

Burt Court | 13. April 2014

I need a new job. Valet in Barstow. Really fits my skill level. Will work for tips, and wash your windows too...

NO2PTRL | 13. April 2014

But will you wax my car?

Mark K | 13. April 2014

Not bad Burt. The only valet gig with a $100K application fee.

Tesla has extensive SuperCharger data logs. If the Barstow site is chronically oversubscribed, they will definitely expand to meet demand. This is a high profile route.

Do all of you think more stalls at Barstow is the top priority, or would you rather have another site first that splits the distance?

CU OPEC | 14. April 2014

Barstow upgrade is definitely overdue. It's one of the oldest SCs on one of the most traveled routes in the country. AND the distance between Barstow and Vegas kinda dictates that you have to hang around for a long time to get enough charge since there's no SC in Primm yet :(

redacted | 14. April 2014

Tesla people problems...

tes-s | 14. April 2014

Sounds like they need more and faster superchargers. Would be a great place for the 135kW superchargers - or even larger. Since it is shared with two stalls, and at peak times most chargers are shared, seems like a good thing to do.

Simply replacing the existing 90s with 135s is a 50% increase - assuming there is enough juice and all cables are large enough this would be a pretty simple swap (my guess is it will not be that easy unless they were planning on larger SCs when they did the install).

Possible location for battery swap?? Would be a nice buffer for the grid - sort of hard to charge so many batteries in 6 hours on Friday, and 6 hours on Sunday. But if you swap your battery on the way to Vegas, they have 36 to 48 hours to charge all the batteries over the weekend while people are in Vegas instead of 6 hours. And the bulk of the charging could be during low usage times, instead of peak Friday afternoon/evening time.

Burt Court | 14. April 2014

My Opinion is: With LA and Orange Counties so large, another location for chargers would be in order. Baker is too far going north, Victorville going south. Maybe a SUPER SUPERCHARGER with a car wash and valet parking(I still need the job) A 90 second battery pack exchange would work...

nbk7ak2 | 14. April 2014

Hey owners thanks for the feedback and comments. I am sure glad I'm not the only one experiencing the issue at Barstow.

I agree with many of the comments. The route between LA and Vegas is a major one. Help us all when the Model X comes out. It will be insane. I've said it before, if I pull in and there are 12 Tesla's waiting to charge, I will charge my car, turn around go home and get another vehicle.

I understand there are growing pains with a new technology, but there is only so much I will put up with. I love my Tesla, and want to enjoy it for the years to come.

Again, the 135kw idea posted by tes-s sounds sweet. As I really only need 200 mile rated range to get from Barstow to Las Vegas and Barstow to Camarillo (Oxnard mover, you will have no issues - Camarillo to Oxnard is only about 10 miles max).

For some of the other questions about when I am there. It really depends. Typically, Friday between 1 pm - 5 pm PST, and Saturday between 5 pm - 7 pm.

Although this last trip I stayed an extra day and was there around 9:30 am (4/13/14). That was a nice charge because I was in the bay with the Supercharge #28 and was getting 285miles/hour.

The total charge time from 30 miles to 211 was around 40 minutes, which is pretty good. I really only need 190 miles to make it home, albeit it will push it close. 211 was plenty, and pulled into the driveway with 30 miles to spare. That's going 70 - 85. If you push your P85 to 120+ forgetaboutit, and all bets are off!

Thanks to all and will check back soon.

Sam

shop | 14. April 2014

Lots of complaining here, but it does look like Tesla is working on it. They have a SC planned for Primm, NV.

tes-s | 14. April 2014

+1 @shop, but I don't think this is so much complaining as discussing. My bet is Tesla is all over this one - my guess is Primm, expansion of Barstow, and probably working on at least one other location.

info | 14. April 2014

I'm not sure that the division of power in Superchargers is equal. It is my understanding that the S/C's are in pairs, but the first car in gets the lion's share. When the first car is nearing full charge, the charge slows down and the second car gets more and more.

I had to use the Barstow supercharges the weekend before last. I arrived both coming and going with one bay available. There was no one who came while all the bays were full. I got there at 1:30 on Saturday afternoon and about 4:00 on Sunday afternoon.

If the Barstow is truly a problem, then maybe when you arrive to see waiting cars, a call to ownership will let them know that there is an insufficiency there. Tesla usually responds to our needs.

hsadler | 14. April 2014

I'm guessing Primm, expansion of Barstow, and possibly one between Barstow and LA.

So travel choices would be
LA - Barstow - Vegas
LA - Before Barstow - Primm - Vegas
LA - Before Barstow - Barstow - Primm - Vegas

Thinking second would be quickest, because of not having to charge to max.

When X comes out, SC's will be 10 miles apart.

GoBlue88 | 14. April 2014

I live in Carlsbad. It is 269 miles from my house to Primm on the 15-215-15 route. Even if they put a SC in Primm, I'd still have to stop in Barstow (I have a S85 on order). Not sure where another spot would make sense. Riverside or San Bernardino or Victorville?

SamO | 14. April 2014

mojave
baker
primm
ontario
victorville

NO2PTRL | 14. April 2014

Looks like we have to go on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, and avoid the week end.

amptsup | 14. April 2014

Luckily I arrived at the Barstow SC about 11AM Sunday on the way home from Vegas. When I arrived there was one other car finishing charging. Then a Volt showed up but could not connect (obviously) so he left. We went to one of the local restaurants for 30 minutes and when we came back, all four bays in use and 2 cars waiting. I left my spot right away to let the first waiting car in. This was my first experience using the Barstow and Vegas SC's for a weekend trip. It worked well for us but I could see that charger getting very busy on a holiday weekend.

GoBlue88 | 14. April 2014

Do people leave a card or piece of paper with a mobile phone number on their windshield while charging at an SC? I'd probably do this in case the bays fill up. A waiting MS owner could call me to let me know so I could move my car out of the spot for him/her if I am done charging.

I guess the other option would be to move the car once the app tells you it is done. Be nice not to have to do that though if all the spots aren't full.

TomServo | 14. April 2014

Question from a potential MS 60 owner, I assume the SC network will be expanded/upgraded as more Tesla's are sold?

NO2PTRL | 14. April 2014

I sure hope so.
Some here have said that new installations have slowed down, let alone upgrades. I am to new to know, but hope that that is not the case.

peter | 14. April 2014

I and a brother and 1st cousin begin a coast-to-coast trek (3 very young 70ish geezers) from Dunlap, CA (Fresno area) on May 10. 1st day will be SC stops at Tejon Ranch, then Barstow, then Vegas for 2 night stay to begin the trip.
Figuring 4 1/2-5 hours to Barstow from Dunlap, are there any recommendations from those with Barstow experience as to when the best arrival time for SC on that Saturday would be? I realize there are no guarantees but we are flexible with our start time and would like to optimize our timing. Thanks for any advice...

Tâm | 14. April 2014

@GoBlue88:

I always leave my cell phone on windshield when I leave my car charging.

I seldom see other owners do. But I've seen a very few do.

Obsoletion | 14. April 2014

I have left my number, but usually I keep my app open and either leave or move the car when I get to my needed charge level. In Barstow, we like to eat at Chili's while we charge and I usually get a table at the window where i can see the supercharging.... It's sometimes entertaining to watch the "show" :)

centralvalley | 14. April 2014

This was probably a poorly conceived Supercharger. The junction of I-15 and I-40 is one of the busiest junctions in the rural west. Traffic is not only flowing to and from Las Vegas, but also east across the desert towards Needles and The Grand Canyon.

Traffic not only comes from Los Angeles-San Diego, but also the Central Valley and Bay Area to head east or southeast. Unfortunately, Barstow is not a location with lots to do.

It might have been more prudent to have two Supercharger locations in the Barstow vicinity: One at the present location with 8 stalls, say, and a second one (4 stalls?) on I-40 around Newberry Springs for those headed east. It would also make the distance to Kingman slightly more manageable, so those folks not going to Vegas would not clog up the SC on I-15

This summer could be dicey at the Barstow Supercharger!

GAGSTESLA | 14. April 2014

NO2PTRL | APRIL 14, 2014
Looks like we have to go on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, and avoid the week end.

At least the rooms are cheaper!

NO2PTRL | 14. April 2014

That to...

PBEndo | 16. April 2014

@GoBlue88
Do people leave a card or piece of paper with a mobile phone number on their windshield while charging at an SC?

Everyone should, but not every one does.
I usually leave a card with my number on it on the dashboard. However, one time I forgot so I added my number to the inside of the chargeport door as a backup. I am not sure if anybody would notice it, but I figured it couldn't hurt.

Sharkdiver76 | 17. April 2014

I do hope they increase the number of stations in Barstow, I recently drove from San Diego to Vegas tues-sun, on tues only 2 other cars however on Sunday it was full and luckily car was leaving as I pulled in. With almost needing a full charge of about an hour to make trip it turns 5hr trip into almost 6 and if I would of had to wait an hour or so on other cars driving my tesla wouldn't be worth it on a rode trip to Vegas. Luckily I left late in the afternoon and didn't get rush of people that checked out at noon on the road from Vegas, while driving I kept thinking I didn't want to get passed by another tesla due to the fact that I might have to wait behind another car if already a line.

I was thinking it would be great if possible to reserve a spot or know of when other owners are leaving places like Vegas on a Sunday that way someone could plan their trip a little better, I would much rather hang around the hotel pool then wait for an open sc at Barstow. This is a trip I take several times a year and after first experience I certainly wouldn't drive my tesla if I was going to Vegas on a Friday afternoon and was in rush to get there just with the uncertainty of an available sc.

Red Sage ca us | 17. April 2014

I do think that most of the original Superchargers were likely scouted to eventually become Superstations, with expansion in mind. I think that a site as busy as Barstow should probably be expanded to 20 units if possible.

I do believe that with the release of Model X, a lot of these expansions will take place at current Superchargers.

I expect that the massive roll-out of Superchargers will precede and accompany the release of Model E. That's when you'll start to see four-to-eight space Supercharger locations every 10-15 miles throughout Greater Los Angeles along the major freeway arteries.

I'm thinking they would be along the 5, 405, 110, 710, 605, 57, 55, & 15 for primarily North/South travel.

For East/West routes, they would appear on the 210, 101, 10, 60, 105, & 91.

Orange county would probably be fine having the 405 and 5 covered, in addition to the aforementioned 91, 57 & 55.

Riverside & San Bernardino probably wouldn't need more than the 215, 10, 91, & 60.

But for now, it seems that there probably should be a new Supercharger set up at the Ontario Mills Mall, at the intersection of the 10 & 15. That might relieve some of the congestion at the Barstow location. At least people wouldn't have to top off by quite as much when they got there.

Burt Court | 17. April 2014

WOW, Red Sage, I want what ever you are drinking. Greater LA every 10 - 15 miles. That would cost Tesla somewhere between a zillion and gigazillion !!! And thats just the land costs...

diegoPasadena | 17. April 2014

As a Tesla driver, I'd of course love to see what Red Sage predicts, but as a stockholder, I would definitely not. It is not at all what Tesla promised or even has in mind, as I understand their strategy. The goal is not to make our daily driving free, nor should it be. The goal is to make our long distance driving possible. As an added bonus, it is also free.

Red Sage ca us | 17. April 2014

Just following through on what has been written here and elsewhere.

People want Tesla Motors to be successful. They realize that will come to fruition as they sell more cars. They know that a major part of that goal will come to pass with the release of the Model E.

But they worry that current Supercharger locations may already be overtaxed by the Model S, and the Model X isn't out yet. Beyond that, those who will purchase the Model E in major cities may not be homeowners, but renters in apartments instead. Not all of them will be able to charge overnight, and quite a few may not be able to charge at work.

Naysayers of the ICE persuasion will point to the ready availability of gas/diesel stations and the lack of infrastructure to support an influx of electric cars.

How the hell do we shut them up?

Simple. By building that infrastructure.

I mentioned earlier that it would be a good idea to team up with Carl's Jr or In-N-Out Burger locations, perhaps both, throughout California. They each tend to have their own parking lots, and locations near major freeway interchanges. Here, take a look at this map of Carl's Jr restaurants. Every other location along the 405 FWY seems to be roughly 10 miles apart.

Both Carl's Jr and In-N-Out Burger locations tend to be gathering spots for car guys. From Drag Racers to Cruisers, Classic Car Lovers to Import Tuners... They all congregate there. I'm pretty sure that some of them have rotating events where they just go from one location to the next, week after week, month after month, with arrangements made with management at each place.

So these would be good companies to approach to install Superchargers. Good food, good service, in a safe environment. Both of them are California based firms too, so it keeps everything in the family.

In states East of the Mississippi River, Carl Karcher Enterprises owns the Hardee's franchises.

If In-N-Out Burger won't work with them, Tesla could try the Rally's Burgers restaurant chain instead, which is part of the Checkers chain of stores out of state. Though those seem to be much less present. Maybe White Castle instead?

What I'm saying is this... Chevron has teamed up with McDonald's to co-brand locations all over the place. It would be a good idea for Tesla Superchargers to be associated with Carl's Jr in a similarly cohesive manner.

Kleist | 17. April 2014

@Burt Court and @diegoPasadena

not at all will it cost gigazillion... long term superchargers will be a profit center.
phase zero - put plugs and grid connection in a network across the nation to enable long distance travel
phase one - add storage to lower demand charges ( that is what the gigafactory is about - right now it is more profitable to put the few available cells in cars then into storage )
phase two - add solar ( in 2019 it wil cost him a quarter of the 2013 prices )

It is a devious, but certain plan. Solar energy and battery prices are falling fast while fossil fuel cost will go up. Elon just has to sit it out for the economics to come to him.

erici | 17. April 2014

"I know that it is free, but that was always included in the sales process and literature."

I have the solution to the problem of fully charged Tesla's sitting plugged in (blocking the bays).

1) Supercharging remains free
2) Parking a fully charged vehicle at the bay is $5 penalty per minute

That way, if you cost somebody else a 30 minute wait it will cost you $150 fine from Tesla.

The charging can remain free, but why is it free to park your vehicle in that charging bay for another 30 minutes after the charging is done?

Red Sage ca us | 17. April 2014

I suspect that before long, charging will be really, very fast...

Think, "Snakt! Ding... Ding... Ding... Ding... Bong! Sh-Clakt!" Done.

That is another way to tell naysayers to shut up.

Bighorn | 18. April 2014

Red Sage
Carls Jr already has a relationship and has co-located superchargers.

GAGSTESLA | 18. April 2014

I like that this tread keeps getting bumped. It's probably the SC I will use the most.

tmschmelzer | 18. April 2014

We were at Barstow supercharger today, returning to LA from Vegas. One open space when we arrived at 12:15 pm. Very shortly thereafter a line 3 deep formed.

We had lunch at the adjacent Chilis and were speaking with the manager. We talked about the superchargers, wait times, etc., and he said that Tesla had reserved four more spaces in the Chilis parking lot and would have four more operational approx. July. Apparently Chilis is quite happy with the extra business they are getting from the superchargers and was happy to let Tesla have four more spaces.

As for charge time, with all spaces full, we went from 70 to 265 in 1.5 hours (P85).

mdemetri | 18. April 2014

@tmschmelzer - Wow!!! That is great news. Barstow desperately needs more SC stalls.

We also were returning from Vegas today (going back to Orange County), arriving at Barstow ~45min after you (~1pm). When we first arrived, all stalls were occupied, but a kind soul came shortly afterwords and moved his car. Even though there were three other cars, we shot straight up to ~190mph charging. In contrast, we only got 75 mph when we first plugged in on the outbound trip at Barstow, when there were three other cars charging (note that we got ~290mph at the Vegas SC when we were alone charging, A battery). This suggested to me that the other cars were either finished charging or squeezing out the last few miles to get a max charge (which is very very slow). I do not blame anyone for this as you require a near full charge to get to Vegas from Barstow, especially with the winds today.

After 1hr, we went from ~50 miles to 220miles and returned to find 3 cars waiting!!!!!! We left quickly to alleviate the line. Clearly more stalls are needed and July cannot come soon enough.

GAGSTESLA | 18. April 2014

@mdemetri

It is a 157 miles from Barstow to Las Vegas. Do you drive a 60 or an 85? Close to getting an 85 and actually was thinking with the right conditions, possibly going from San Bernardino to Vegas (225 miles) without the stop in Barstow. Not possible?

mdemetri | 18. April 2014

@GAGSTESLA - yes, it is only 157 miles from Barstow but there are several major climbs that are frequently associated with high winds. Elevation and winds eat miles fast. We left Barstow with 245 rated miles and arrived in Vegas with 50 rated miles (we have a P85). Nearly 200 rated miles to go 157 miles. That was driving at ~75-79 mph, but with high winds. On the return trip, we left with 254 rated miles and arrived in Barstow with 53 rated miles, doing 75-79mph. Again ~200 rated miles to go 157 real miles. If you slow down to 65-70mph, then it would be easier on the miles, but you would not be keeping up with traffic.

I think San Bernardino to Vegas (225 miles) is to far of a stretch, especially if you have to also climb the Cajon pass. It might be doable in an 85kwh if you drive slowly (~60-65mph), but it would create range anxiety. Remember that the battery does not like being depleted to zero or close to zero.

However, having said this I would not let this stop you from getting the car.m It is amazing and the superchargers work very well (when available).

Bighorn | 18. April 2014

So Barstow is a bit of a gamble--isn't that the point of using it in the first place?

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