Backup Gateway Questions

Backup Gateway Questions

Installation of our Tesla Energy solar panels and two Powerwalls has just been completed. We are awaiting the followup inspections, so the system is not operational at this time. I have some questions about using the Backup Gateway (BUG) that the installers could not answer, and phone calls and emails to Tesla are so far unanswered. (Phone support is always "assisting other customers," and leaving my phone number has not resulted in a callback.) So, I am posting my questions here. (My intention is to use the cellular and wired ethernet connections, and not the Wifi connection.)

1) My android Tesla application, which we were already using for our Model S, does not "see" our system, even though the BUG is powered up. The Tesla electrician says that it should work, but it is not. Instead, the app displays sales information for a solar system. How can I get the app to connect to our system?

2) The BUG is presumably a Wifi access point. Like every other access point I've ever had in our house, can I enable standard security features (e.g. hide the SSID, enable MAC filtering, encryption)?

3) Can I disable/turn off the Wifi interface completely so that it is not broadcasting anything?

4) Is there a user manual for the BUG?

5) It appears that I am able to access some kind of web interface via the wired ethernet connection via our PC web browser. The Tesla electrician was unsure, but thought that this was for service technicians only. Is this interface usable for normal system configuration and control by the user (me)?



cwied | April 7, 2018

My powerwalls didn't show up in the app either until I self-registered them:

The gateway is not a wifi access point. It presents a wireless network purely so it can be configured wirelessly. Connecting to its SSID does not give you access to the LAN or internet. I don't believe the Wifi can be turned off as that's the fail-safe way of configuring the gateway if the ethernet goes out.

There's a user manual, but it may not have the kind of information you're looking for. See here:

The web interface allows you basic interaction without going into the setup wizard. The setup wizard is designed for service technicians, but you can get into it by using "S" + your serial number as the password. Don't change anything you don't understand in the wizard. It does contain the settings for basic operation modes as well as the backup reserve percentage. It is not intended for normal configuration and control, but some of us have scripted against this interface to avoid the lag associated with the app (settings changes can take > 15 minutes to be applied).

mcdonalk | April 8, 2018

cw_tesla: Thank you for excellent and succinct reply.

vloschiavo | April 9, 2018

I agree with cw_tesla - it's pretty hard to break anything via the web UI and the setup wizard that is accessible there. It's built that way on purpose since most electricians aren't software experts too.