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120v for Model 3

120v for Model 3

Hello all,

I'm wondering if the Model 3 can be charged using a standard 120 volts outlet (North America)? I know it won't charge as quick as a 240 volts outlet but for some people, they don't have the choice, especially for those who live in an apartment building with exterior parking.

PaceyWhitter | May 20, 2016

It will probably be possible, but difficult unless your commute is short.

mos6507 | May 20, 2016

Musk has already encouraged apartment dwellers to lean on Superchargers as their primary charging method. He just doesn't want those who CAN charge at home using Superchargers this way.

SUN 2 DRV | May 20, 2016

Yes, at around 4 miles per hour. That will be sufficient for very patient people or short commuters.

Badbot | May 20, 2016

plug it in when you get home and 10-12 hours later you got 50-60 miles to go.
then charge it all weekend.

Just try it when your done the next day you know.
if it is not enough then call electric installers for a 14-50 wall plug.
2-3 hundred unless it is FAR from your parking place.
do not tell the guy bidding on the install what it is for.
then you get the price to install a wall plug instead of what he thinks EV drivers can afford.

rharris | May 21, 2016

ShinraCorp: Yes, all Teslas can charge on 120v. But for 200mile+ range, you will want something faster. If you can not install a NEMA 14-50, then I recommend you look at buying a 120v re-joiner such as a Quick220. It can combine two 120v outlets to create a 240v @ 12A, enough to charge your car up 8 miles per hour.

See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEyOZ842Tzs

Badbot | May 21, 2016

things like Quick220 you should remember half of the 120v outlets are on 1 leg of your 220 call it leg A.
you need to join to a outlet on leg B or you just overload the outlet and trip the breaker.

I have seen as many as 8 outlets on 1 breaker.

topher | May 21, 2016

110 Volts * 15 Amps = 1650 Watts = 1.65 kW * 80% = 1.32 kW * (215 Miles / 55 kWh) = 5.2 Miles Range per Hour.
110 V * 20 A = 2.2 kW * 80% = 1.76 kW * 3.9 M/kW = 6.9 MRpH
110 V * 30 A = 3.3 kW * 80% = 2.6 kW * 3.9 = 10.3 MRpH
220 V * 40 A = 8.8 kW * 80% = 7.0 kW * 3.9 = 27.5 MRpH
220 V * 50 A = 11 kW * 80% = 8.8 kW * 3.9 = 34.3 MRpH

Thank you kindly.

mntlvr23 | May 21, 2016

Thanks topher! My college electrical engineering class is slowly coming back to me. I might just understand this yet. EE was a required 5 credit (5 day/week) class outside of my discipline. I met my future wife in that class during the first week, and can't say that I paid much attention to the professor after that.

ir | May 21, 2016

Also be careful to use a dedicated 120V circuit. The car will draw 80% of the breaker's limit. Sounds obvious but I've seen EVs try to double-up on the same outlet and are puzzled why neither are charging.

In an apartment garage setting, a whole chain of outlets could be on the same circuit. You wouldn't want to have a charge rage incident with your neighbors.

jordanrichard | May 21, 2016

ShinraCorp, don't worry about it. For your driving needs, a 120 outlet may suffice. 2 years ago when we visited our daughter in NC, we plugged into the 120 outlet on her deck. We parked the car at 6 pm and by the time we used the car again the next morning, there was 68 miles added.

So, as I said, don't fret about it.

SUN 2 DRV | May 21, 2016

topher: I think that's a bit optimistic. It doesn't include the loss due to charging inefficiency which at the lower charge rates can be very significant. I think the 110V numbers will actually be about 20% lower.