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Weekend trips and charging

Weekend trips and charging

I just reserved an X. But I have some questions as to what Advice Tesla gives to EV customers about charging on trips. For instance, if I go to the coast for a long weekend, should I ask the hotel if I can charge up at night? Do I bring and extension cord? Do I offer some money for the electricity? Or if I drive 2 hours to visit family, do I run an extension cord outside their house to the curb to charge at night? Is it ok to do this in the rain?

Or should I just simply do a search for fast chargers and stop along the freeway for an hour? I mean, it just seems that the charging issue must be addressed, our minds should be put at ease with these sorts of questions.

Tom Muadib | August 4, 2013

Congratulations on reserving your Model X. As a Model S owner who has just completed a two week, 3000 mile road trip from San Diego to Vancouver BC and back, let me reassure you regarding what a great choice a Tesla is for extended road trips. It's quiet, smooth ride and comfortable seats make long trips a joy. By the time you take delivery of your X next year, enough superchargers should be installed to make getting from most any two points in the US a breeze; however, extended EV travel does take a bit of planning to ensure that you have appropriate charging options at hotels, especially in areas without supercharger coverage.

Here are my suggestions for EV road trips:

1) Always bring your Mobile Connector and all adapters (J1772, NEMA 14-50, standard 110V). An extension cord is also a good idea. I find the Recargo website or mobile app paticularly helpful in locating charging alternatives.

2) If you need to charge overnight at a hotel, confirm the exact type of EV charging that is available and ask to reserve the charger for the night. Hotel personnel are not always completely knowledgable/honest regarding this information. The following site is a great resource for EV Charging Hotels: http://dcubed.com/evmap/ Most hotels that have EV charging offer it for free, as well as discounting or waiving hotel parking and valet fees.

3) Be aware of factors that can affect driving range including those that you can control (speed, rapid acceleration and braking, use of heating/air conditioning) as well as those you can not (elevation, wind). With some planning and as more superchargers are brought online, you should have no problem with range anxiety.

ian t.wa.us | August 5, 2013

Great post thanks Tom!

Praskal | August 5, 2013

This is excellent advice. You have helped out my mind at ease. I am pretty damn exited for 2014 and the year of the X.

Brian H | August 5, 2013

Another guideline: every chance you get, Max Range Charge. You'll be drawing it down immediately, and will never regret having too much range.

Panoz | August 9, 2013

No one answered the question about using the mobile charger in the rain...is it safe? And what's the typical daily range most people taking trips have experienced?

negarholger | August 9, 2013

@Panoz
- UMC in rain is maybe a good question for Tesla
My yake on it this
- the car connector ( UMC, J1772 and SC ) do have power disconnected - so that side should be safe
- at RV parks the 14-50 is always powered, but has a circuit breaker. I would turn the circuit breaker off rain or shine before connecting the UMC to the 14-50 and then turn it on again.
- the UMC box should not be in a puddle off water, also with heavy rain I would put some cover over it.

Typical range for our weekend trips is 150 to 250 miles. From all directions I know were my bailout chargers are about 20-30 miles from home in case I am running low.