Charging setup when outlet is off the right side of the car?

Charging setup when outlet is off the right side of the car?

I'm going to park against the right side wall of my garage, where the electrical outlet will likely be. Am trying to think of ways to easily access the back left charging outlet on the Model S without having to squeeze around to the other side of the car along the wall every time. Has anyone come up with a handy solution, especially since the garage door will block access for anything dropping down from the ceiling? Run something retractable along the floor? Have a bar that swings over above the parked car from the wall? Ideas welcome!

rwang | 3 novembre 2012

Great question. I was thinking about hanging the charger from a retractable pulley above the garage as My garage is about a 14 foot ceiling. It'd make it easy if I ended up w/ 2 cars.

rwang | 3 novembre 2012
mrspaghetti | 3 novembre 2012

It'd be a lot simpler to just have the outlet installed on the left side.

TikiMan | 3 novembre 2012

I am in the same boat. I deliberately installed my NEMA outlet high up on the right, so I would have extra length to rig up something like a pulley set-up or something. My problem is the car-plug part would need to clear my roll-up garage door, when it is in the open position. Thus, I like the idea of a counter-weight and pulley system (similar to the pix of the Karma in the tesla-motors-club link), so I can set the hight perfectly.

Does anyone know where you find counter-weights (like on a grandfather clock), that would perfectly balance the cable weight, but not over-weight it to the point where it would put unnessassary stress on the charging plug and lock?

jbunn | 3 novembre 2012


Yes. Cut a piece of pvc water pipe - half, three quarter or one inch to length, with a pvc cap on the bottom. Fill it with lead shot. Scuba diving stores, or sporting good stores where you can buy powder and shot for reloading shotgun shells. Drill a hole in the top cap, put tht string through, and knot. When you get the balance right, glue the cap on. Otherwise, what you want is called a "sash weight", but you will need to trim it which will be much harder.

DouglasR | 3 novembre 2012
ChasF | 4 novembre 2012

Back in to the garage instead of pulling in. I started doing this months ago and I like it much better. It solves the problem having your receptacle on the opposite side and is also more fun to drivel out of quickly. Think Batcave :-)

mrspaghetti | 4 novembre 2012


Batcave, or fugitive :-)

jat | 4 novembre 2012

Isn't the cable long enough to plug in anyway? The portable charger for the LEAF is plenty long enough to traverse the length of the car.

jerry3 | 4 novembre 2012

The UMC cable is 18 feet, the HPWC is 25. That makes the UMC just about long enough if you park close enough to the passenger's side (assumes you're backing in and the outlet is on the passenger's side). Remember you lose about five or six feet vertically depending upon how high up the 14-50 is mounted. (The HPWC should have enough length for most situations.)

Brian H | 4 novembre 2012

Holy Hot Getaway, Batperson!

I can just see you, exiting your driveway at 50 mph and climbing ...

Michael23 | 4 novembre 2012

It's long enough to park either way I think. Sometimes I back in and sometimes I go head first, but I put the outlet for backing in. Meausre to make sure though.

dborn | 4 novembre 2012

Charge ports on both sides of the car? What about right hand drive? Australia, India, England, South Africa, lots of othe smaller countries, Hong Kong, New Zealand.

jerry3 | 4 novembre 2012


The way the charge port is now is perfect for right-hand-drive countries.

portia | 5 novembre 2012

Hmm, @jkwolfe, I don't think it's a problem, my outlet is also on the right side of the garage, past the rear of the car, which I pull in head first into the garage. I have plenty of space on the right side of the car, but I never have to walk between the car and the wall to reach the cable. Just make sure it is reachable when you are standing behind the car.

The cable is long enough to reach the left rear charge port. The NEMA 14-50 outlet is maybe 4 feet off the floor, and I just run the cable on the floor when charging, and reel it back into a pile when not charging.

TikiMan | 5 novembre 2012

Anyone using a 'tool-balancer' for the charging cable?

The pulley / counterweight idea is good, however, this might work even better...

loco | 5 novembre 2012

Park backwards?

Brian H | 6 novembre 2012

yeah, it's been mentioned that that makes for fast fun getaways, too.

David Trushin | 6 novembre 2012

If you put the outlet on the inside of the outside wall, the one with the door, then it is an easy reach to run the cord to either side. I have a 3 car garage and plan to have an outlet in the middle and on the side with the two wide so that I can park in any slot (and of course have an outlet for our second Tesla).

mrspaghetti | 6 novembre 2012

You know, it's not a big deal to run conduit and have an outlet on both sides of your garage.

jkwolfie | 6 novembre 2012

Lots of good ideas - thanks! Just to say, my "custom" homebuilder did not build a garage fit for humans. I have less than a foot of space between the right side of my car and the right wall of my three car garage -- passengers cannot exit the right side of my car when parked. Backing into my space would be both dangerous and a deathtrap for the driver. My wife needs the middle spot of the garage so that kids can enter/exit both sides of her car. Far left side of the garage needs to be our storage area (we have no basements in Texas). So...

Not sure I get the weight/balance contraption yet, but it looks promising. Especially if there's some retractable cord to attach to lift it out of the way when not in use.

Probably just makes me appear too lazy to walk around my car every time I park! I can't wait!

TikiMan | 14 novembre 2012

I just got my new 'tool-balancer' (retractable pulley cable / wheel). It can handle from 1 to 3.5 lbs of tension, so my fingers are crossed it will work with the 'Tesla charge connector/cable'.

Unfortunately, it does not lock the cable, once retracted to the proper length, thus it will continue to put about a 1 lb of tension on the charging cable when it is locked into the charging-port. I hope it doesn’t cause wear on the connector or charge-port lock with 1 lb of constant pull tension, while it charges for five to six hours a night. However, at least it will be a upward angle tension.

Either way, I will let you guys know if it works, after I get my car tomorrow (fingers crossed).

TikiMan | 15 novembre 2012

UPDATE... I hooked up the 'tool-balancer' to my charging-cable, and so far, it's working perfectly! When I unplug the charging-cable, it retracts up to clear both my car and my head. If anyone is curious what my setup looks like, send me the info on how to upload a photo here, and I will upload some photos.

markapeterman | 15 novembre 2012

Definitely want to see a photo!
But I am not forum savy enough to help :(
Thanks to TikiMan and whoever can explain the process.

Brian H | 15 novembre 2012

Save the photos onto some online service, then snag the URL for each (some, like Flickr, have a specific procedure for linkable URLs). Then use standard HTML here:

<img src="[URL here]" width="xxx" height="yyy">

The width and height bits are optional, depends on whether the source is too big or two small for this forum. Keep xxx and yyy in proportion to the pixel count ratio on the original to avoid distortion.

Brian H | 15 novembre 2012

typo: two too small

Brian H | 15 novembre 2012

the simplest URL copy system is to right-click on the image and select 'Copy image URL' from the context menu that comes up. But not all photo/image sites allow that; they have special procedures you must follow.

Chuck Lusin | 16 novembre 2012

I have been thinking to installing the outlet above the cars, like 8 or 9 feet inside of the door. Then use a 6 foot piece of aluminum U bar to lay the cord into. Use a strong arm to pull the bar down and have like 3 feet hanging past the end, which would plug in to the car. When done charging, just unplug and let the cord float back up. I have not yet worked out the exact numbers, and want to make the LEDs on the charger still visible, even though it is not really needed. If Velcro straps are used, then the mobile charger could semi easily be disconnected from the ceiling. My county want the outlet at min 16 inches from the floor and not higher than 48 inches. I have to still think about this.

TikiMan | 16 novembre 2012

Let's see if this works...

TikiMan | 16 novembre 2012

Trying again...

Klaus | 16 novembre 2012

Drop the NEMA 14-50 on the right side of your garage near the opening. Then just reach in before closing or after opening the door to plug/unplug.

TikiMan | 16 novembre 2012

Another try...

Klaus | 16 novembre 2012
TikiMan | 16 novembre 2012

That worked! :-)

Here is another view...

TikiMan | 16 novembre 2012

...and another...

TikiMan | 16 novembre 2012

...another view...

TikiMan | 16 novembre 2012

One more...

So, in a nutshell, I am using the following things to do this...

-2x Screw-in metal open hooks (for hanging the cable from the beams).
-1 Screw-in metal eye hook (for hanging the 'tool balancer' unit)
-1 Spring Snap (to connect the 'tool balancer' unit to the screw-in metal eye hook.
-1 Large un-lockable plastic zip tie (for connecting the 'tool balancer' cable to the Tesla charging cable handle.
-1 Small plastic zip tie (for connecting the 'tool balancer' cable to the Tesla charging cable stop adjustment).
-1 Large rubber-coated bike-rack hook (to cradle the Tesla charging display (thing with lights neat the NEMA plug, as seen in the first pix)
-1 'Tool-Balancer' unit (Note: The unit I am using is a Pneumatics BL02 Heavy Duty Mechanical Tool Balancer, 1 - 3.5 Pound Load Capacity, set at 1 lb)

Disclaimer: This is completely my own idea, and not in any way sanctioned by Tesla. I take no responsibility for issues with this set-up, if you decide to try it on your own.

mrspaghetti | 16 novembre 2012

If you're happy with it, that's great. It still seems like a lot more trouble to me than just putting the outlet on the other side though.

Klaus | 16 novembre 2012
TikiMan | 16 novembre 2012

My reasoning for my set-up is primarily because I have a very tight garage when both cars are in it, and very little room to walk around when the garage door is closed. With this set-up, it takes me only a few seconds to engage and degage the cable when I need to, without opening my garage door, or walking around the car, to re-coil up the cable.

Plus my life is all about efficiency (time is money!)

Brian H | 16 novembre 2012

Even at home!? How much do you earn/charge every hour watching TV or on the Web? And sleeping and eating? ;) And making ... never mind!

TikiMan | 16 novembre 2012

@Brian, Trust me, after my LA freeway commute, the LAST thing I want to do is uncoil a charge cable. I didn't buy a Model S for just kicks... (well, a little ;-)

Brian H | 17 novembre 2012

Motivate yourself with a big image of someone pumping gas in a gale or blizzard!

david_gelfand | 11 dicembre 2014

TikiMan -

david_gelfand | 11 dicembre 2014

Do you know an online place to order the 1 Large rubber-coated bike-rack hook (to cradle the Tesla charging display (thing with lights neat the NEMA plug, as seen in the first pix)? Is this the part that holds a NEMA 14-50 outlet?

Thanx for any suggestions. We'd like to try it! I found several places for the balancer

Bighorn | 11 dicembre 2014

zombie alert

NKYTA | 11 dicembre 2014

I've got time.

Everyone knows that American zombies originate in those sparsely populated western States.

Roamer@AZ USA | 11 dicembre 2014

NKYTA, Why else did you think we all own guns.......