Scheduled charging times

Scheduled charging times

The website mentions being able to plug in your vehicle but delay charging until a specified time. I am unable to find this menu on my recently delivered Model S.
Is this option functional currently? or is it to come with the next software update?

krogers | 24 dicembre 2012

This option is not in the current s/w release. Not sure which future release will have this...

bobgriswold | 27 dicembre 2012

This is a VERY big miss in my opinion. I have a variable rate electric plan with PG&E - my electricity rates during the day are $0.55/kWh, but after midnight it is $0.001/kWh. By not being able to schedule the charge times, this is going to cost me a LOT more money for each charge.

My Roadster (version 1.5 - 2008) had scheduled charging as a standard feature. Why did Tesla decide to de-prioritize this feature? I would MUCH rather have scheduled charging than alphabetized search in music, or auto-present for the door handles.

Please, Tesla - don't make loyal Tesla owners like me upset about this any longer and bring out this feature ASAP!

andrewb1974 | 27 dicembre 2012

Buy a timer prior to updates from Tesla is available.

farhad667 | 27 dicembre 2012

The Tesla Model S Charging page is kinda misleading on this:

It clearly advertises "Charge at Night" as an existing feature... even tells us to go to the touch-panel to set it. But, look there as we might, there's no mention of this. :(

Not sure how long this will take to implement. However, as a piece of UI courtesy, there should at least be a placeholder for "Charging at Night" somewhere on the touchscreen, as advertised. Then, when we select it, it could say "Sorry, still working on this feature. Hopefully coming by [date] :)"

This would at least acknowledge / inform owners of the issue, instead of sending us looking around the web for information about it... as I did and ended up here.

That said: Small issue overall. The car rocks and I'm very happy with it so far.

TikiMan | 27 dicembre 2012

Yes, I agree a software based charge-timer is a must! The best way it should be implemented is so when you say come home from work at 6:00pm, and plug it in, it 'trickle-charges' at a low amp rate until the time you have it set to do a full amp charge at off-off peak rate times (which is usually midnight to 6:00am or so).

Then if you want to just do a standard charge or max charge for an evening drive, you could just set it to ignore the timer.

I am not sure if this is how the Roadster works, however, by summer next year I really hope this is implemented in the MS, or I am going to be paying $0.39 to $0.50 per kWh.

Chuck Lusin | 27 dicembre 2012

SCE TOU-EV-1 is $.12kWh Off-Peak 9pm to Noon, and $.28kWh Summer and $.22 Winter.

jat | 27 dicembre 2012

I agree this is an important feature, but then so are many things like getting bugs out of existing software, adding a phone client, etc which are also important. I assume they are making prioritization decisions based on feedback from customers, so I am willing to wait (though if more things were open source then there are plenty of customers who could help).

If we are talking about desires for the eventually feature, what I would like in my ideal world would be the ability to set time periods and a minimum charge level that is maintained in that time period. For me, I would set it to 24 hrs/day, maintain a minimum charge level, so that if I get home with an empty battery it will charge enough so I can run local errands without waiting for the middle of the night. Then, I would have it set to fully charge during the middle of the night. Ideally, I could also set the charge rate per period (so the Model S and the LEAF could charge at the same time without tripping a breaker).

Not everyone will want that level of complication, so I would expect the default setting to be a simple timer, but the complicated UI could be hidden behind an advanced button.

Right now, I am on flat-rate rather than Georgia Power's EV rate which makes the super-off-peak usage (midnight-7am) to $.019/kWh, but it doubles the on-peak rate to $.19/kWh. So, the savings from charging at night, even two EVs, is totally offset by paying so much more for the rest of the usage. I currently spend about $15/mo on charging my LEAF ($25/mo in the summer), so even if I double that after adding the Model S I still lose money to switch to time of use billing.

I think the only way it makes sense for me is if I had a big battery that I charged in the middle of the night and ran much of the house off it during the day.

stevenmaifert | 28 dicembre 2012

It's one thing to add features that were never advertised, like creep and Homelink location awareness. Something else entirely when we pay for advertised features like WiFi, Flash memory storage, and Charge Timers that, 6 months into deliveries, still aren't unavailable.

jat | 28 dicembre 2012

@stevenmaifert - are you saying you wouldn't have bought the car if they had told you up front it would be months before those features were available?

stevenmaifert | 28 dicembre 2012 - Of course I would have still purchased the car. I'm just saying I think TM has an obligation to first make functional what they advertised about the car on their Website, and then surprise us with nice to have feature enhancements.

joshwetzel | 9 gennaio 2013

Agree with folks on this thread, the fact they are hyping "scheduled charging" on the main site yet don't support it at all in the software is a major issue IMO. For those on a special plan, it results in significant cost differences on charging.

Brian H | 9 gennaio 2013

just keep comparing it to gasoline $/mi.

xenogeek | 9 gennaio 2013

Not having scheduled charging means more $$ out of my pocket. Yes, I would prioritize this feature over some of the others that don't have a direct impact on my monthly bills.

ian | 2 febbraio 2013

Without this feature I may be spending more in Electricity than I did in Gas. I like the idea where I can set no charge times and trickel charge times (bounded by AMPs and max miles) and max charge times.

The most basic implementation of this feature needs to exist.

A more advanced way to look at the trickle time slots would be to know what the total charge time needs to be, what part of that does not fit into the max charge window, then trickle only the delta. This puts the car at max miles (or the most for the least) in the time allotted.

jat | 2 febbraio 2013

Since they have released the Android app and it has the ability to get the current state of charge and initiate charging, it should be easy to use that functionality to build timed charging outside of the app. Ie, a job computes when the charge needs to start to finish by a selected time and initiates the charge at that time.

The app connects over HTTPS to make these requests, so it will take a bit of time to work out without Tesla's help, but it will happen.

Vlnprof | 3 febbraio 2013

Not sure if this ultimately will have an affect with the folks at Tesla, but you might go to the forum "Prioritized Software Enhancement LIst" and vote for #101. s4.

jat | 3 febbraio 2013

I have proof of concept code to use the remote protocol that the Android app does and can compute the time required to charge and initiate charging at the proper time to finish by a designated time. Not ready to distribute though -- see the Android app thread for more info.

Brian H | 3 febbraio 2013

This is the #1 app feature wishlist item, I think. The only real available workaround so far is low charging rate so the finish is about when the car is to be driven.

teddyg | 3 febbraio 2013

Wow I am surprised this was available on the Roadster but not the Model S??? Tesla really dropped the ball here but I am sure this has to be on the list for future software upgrades...Tesla will make this right I am sure.

teddyg | 3 febbraio 2013

In the meantime I think you can buy a relatively inexpensive timer connected to your outlet which will only feed energy from that outlet at the time specified.
Still this should be built into the car so it can be programmed from the touch screen.

jat | 3 febbraio 2013

@teddyg - good luck finding such a timer that will support 50A@240V.

shs | 3 febbraio 2013

One can certainly use a contactor to switch 50A@240V with a 120V timer, but when I proposed this earlier someone questioned whether the car would respond properly to plugging in a "dead" charging cable and then having the voltage suddenly appear at some later time. Someone else suggested that the car might even explode under these circumstances, but I am pretty sure they were kidding;-)

In any case, if someone can trip the 50 amp breaker on the charging circuit, connect to the car and then set the breaker at some later point, we might be able to know whether this is a possible solution to scheduling charging for a time when the rates go down. I don't have a MS yet, so someone else will need to do the test and report back whether their car charged properly when the voltage appeared, and also whether it exploded or not.

jat | 3 febbraio 2013

@shs - I'll test that after I next drive my car to discharge the battery some.

I agree you can use a contactor or an industrial relay, but that isn't going to be as easy as what teddyg was suggesting.

DouglasR | 3 febbraio 2013


I believe I was the one who questioned whether the car would charge if the line suddenly became live. However, someone else pointed out that most public charging stations are set up to repower after an outage, and that the car would resume charging. I agree, however, that we can't be sure until someone tests it.

jat | 4 febbraio 2013

@shs, DouglasR - the car does indeed begin charging if you plugin a dead line and then later turn on the power. Of course, you will have to unlock the charge port yourself since the power cord will have no power.

bsimoes | 4 febbraio 2013

My location is just getting set up with electric smart meters and they are revamping telephone poles and wires while they are doing this. (Not bad when you figure we just got house numbers when the nationwide 911 push happened about 15 years ago!) Anyway, when I was talking to the man from the power company, I asked him whether we would have an adjustable rate scale depending on time of day usage. He said that they were working out the price structure, but then he was telling me that we would be able to decide what we wanted to run when and be able to pre-set the timing with these meters. I'm wondering if those of you who already have this technology don't already have the ability to pre-set charge times. It wouldn't have to come from the car, but instead, be accessed through your home computer. Perhaps it's worth a call to your power company.

shs | 5 febbraio 2013

jat, Thanks so much for testing this concept and reporting the results. That is good news. If an official version of scheduled timing is not available by the time I get my MS, I'll route my charging circuit through a contactor with a 110V control circuit.

fluxemag | 5 febbraio 2013

This is a big concern for me because I don't want to exceed the capabilities of my service panel (200A). If I have it set to charge from 12-6AM, there's a very low likelihood we'll be cooking with all the lights, computers and televisions on, or that I'd be working in the garage. It would also mean I wouldn't have to come back out before bed to plug in and get cheaper rates.

But for $400 you can get this:

craig.tesla | 5 febbraio 2013

fluxemag: That panel says it's only rated for 8kW, which is only 40A at 240V. Probably ok, but for 8kW you can get a lot cheaper, like this one:

shs | 5 febbraio 2013

I would think one could get a 50A 240V contactor for well less than $100.

jeroens | 10 febbraio 2013

Seems to be in 4.3 (apparently starting to roll out soon)