An idea to free up a supercharger spot at a full SC

An idea to free up a supercharger spot at a full SC

Was just reading the thread about increased SC usage when the M3 arrives and how the SCs will be crowded.

Well, an idea popped into my head that would help those that arrive at a full SC location. You pull up, see that all the stalls are taken. On the charging screen, you select "Request stall", your car then pings Tesla, which in turn would know which car at that location is done charging and has been there the longest. So the system alerts/texts the owner of that car, that someone needs their spot. Once the owner acknowledges this notification, you get a notice in your car that an owner of one of the cars has been notified and should be arriving shortly to move their car. If the owner of the car that has been there the longest doesn't respond with "x" amount of time, the system then pings the next longest car.

Tropopause | 28. desember 2015

Make it so!

kawdennis | 28. desember 2015

How about a tow truck when the 1st driver doesn't move his/her tesla out | 28. desember 2015

You should get a job with Tesla. Maybe the owner of the car that is finished charging gets a text that says "if you don't remove your car within "X" minutes, the Supercharger will suck all the life out of your battery and refuse to put it back until you unplug and leave the space."

tes-s | 28. desember 2015

How about more stalls?

sentabo | 28. desember 2015

Nice idea. Even better would be that they ping the local charger that has been there the longest. Would hate to see someone on a road trip get hassled.

I do about 90% of my charging in my garage. Admittedly I have stopped at my local SC on occasion during off-peak hours. Even then it has been crowded a couple of times. On one occasion I took the last available slot. I had charged for about 5 minutes when another Tesla showed up and stopped to wait. I immediately stopped my charge to give him the spot in case he was a traveler. Hopefully other locals do the same (though doubtful).

sentabo | 28. desember 2015

@jordanrichard - Just reread your post and saw "done charging," so it wouldn't matter if it was a local or not. Your idea makes a lot of sense.

If none of them were finished with their charge it would be nice to find a way to get any local chargers to free up a spot.

WHitchings | 28. desember 2015

This idea will be even more needed once we get a lot of Model 3 folks online...

staze | 28. desember 2015

Great idea @jr. My notifications haven't been working and I kept forgetting to unplug/move my car at the hotel this weekend. I know there were at least 2 other MS guests there as well. The reserve/notification feature would be great.

jordanrichard | 28. desember 2015

sentabo, what you did is the proper thing to do, however if one isn't sitting in their car to see that there is someone waiting, you would have no idea.

As for getting a way for a "local" to disconnect in the scenario you posed, I don't think there is a way, other than Tesla texting each owner in an order based on when they plugged in and hopefully a "local" would relent.

Without Tesla knowing what you travel plans are, they can't decreed that you have enough charge and should give up your spot.

I think if Tesla started sort of a supercharger edict campaign, that would help.

WHitchings | 28. desember 2015

We have got to stop the local/traveler stuff at SCs. There will forever be a difference of opinion on that topic, per all the threads so far.

If you're at an SC, for whatever reason, and done charging, please open up the spot. This suggestion of Tesla pinging you is great and will solve a large number of problems if implemented.

Let's let the local/non-local thing die. If you're charging, be kind.

PhillyGal | 28. desember 2015

@WHitchings - +1

@jordan - Nice idea. Of course, if only humans were more well behaved, a simple campaign to remind people to MOVE AS SOON AS YOU'RE DONE would work.

Bluesday Afternoon | 28. desember 2015

I'm shocked! Your response, "How about more stalls?", implies there is a problem! I'm surprised by your request since there are no problems at/with Superchargers.


I like your idea! The financial resources to develop this system is far less than the battery swap idea.

MichaelN | 28. desember 2015

+!- excellent idea Jordan !!!

jordanrichard | 28. desember 2015

".... let's let the local/non-local thing dies" is why I didn't bring up in my original post.

One really only needs to move, if there is a need to move. This BTW applies to both "local" charging and road trip charging. In Glen Allen VA, the chargers are in sight of Chili's, but still a 5 min walk. If you are in the middle of dinner and your car is done charging, yet you see that you are the only car there, out of 8 stalls, would you stop eating to go out to the car and move it?

I wouldn't because my car sitting there is not stopping anyone from charging from one of the 7 other stalls. Now, if they were all taken up, then I would, but I would only know that because I can see the chargers from the restaurant. Actually I would only see them if I was seated on the right side of the place. Not all SC stalls are in site of where you may be, hence the idea of a notification that essentially says, all of the stalls are taken and someone needs one.

lph | 28. desember 2015

How about also using the autominous driving (it will be on private property). Along with the automatic wand charger under development, you could just get out of the car and go do your stuff, and the car will ping when the car is ready and be parked in a regular parking stall nearby.

Sam_S | 28. desember 2015

Very good idea jordanrichard.

tes-s | 28. desember 2015

@Red - no problems, just opportunities.

I do think the best way to free up a supercharger spot at a full SC is to add another stall.

akikiki | 28. desember 2015

great idea jordan.

Realure | 28. desember 2015

How about allowing you to unplug their charged car so it can autonomously find another spot to wait with the okay by Tesla and/or the owner. This would be the best use of summoning feature.

teslagiddy | 28. desember 2015

Tesla app already has a "charging complete" notification option. People using superchargers should enable that option. It should be embedded into our culture: stalls are for charging only, not parking.

EVino | 28. desember 2015

I've gotten cynical about these ideal ideas. It takes just one bozo to screw up the rotation. Least common denominator will raise Murphy's Law. In 50 years they'll have robotic arms that will come to your stall. In can be here in 2 years if Elon wills it.

jordanrichard | 28. desember 2015, more spots are always a great idea, as long as Tesla is allowed to expand the number of stalls at their existing locations. This of course cost more money/time. So I look at this idea as a stop gap for those high demand times. Admittedly the closest thing I have seen to a full house at a SC site was in Sept 2014, when we made a trip to NC. It was at the Hamilton NJ site and 7 of the 8 stalls were taken.

Of course since then the number of Tesla's on the road has gone up.

Teslagiddy, yes the app tells you when you car is done, but it doesn't ell you if someone is waiting for a spot.

Burt Court | 28. desember 2015

JordanR, a really good idea, and some other peoples not so good. But I've become less and less positive that humankind will ever learn enough thotfulness. A few years from now when there are twice as many S's out there plus the 3's, its going to be fun. I have been to two SC's with a consierge (sp) and that system works well when/where needed. Fortunately for me, I don't travel on holiday week-ends. Sounds like a horrible experience!
old burt

AoneOne | 28. desember 2015

Small suggestion: Use either the car's charging port lights or the supercharger's lighted sign to indicate that the car is done charging. Then you know that when your car is done everyone else will know it too. That will encourage drivers to move their cars as soon as possible.

Yes, it's just social pressure, and some will not care, but it should provide a benefit well beyond the cost of implementation. I just hope it doesn't incite charger-rage.

tes-s | 28. desember 2015

more spots are always a great idea, as long as Tesla is allowed to expand the number of stalls at their existing locations.

True. Another supercharger location nearby would work as well. I'm still optimistic that queuing can be infrequent enough (like at gas stations) to not require an extensive queue management system. Perhaps currently-open stalls in nearby (75 miles?) superchargers?

wallyho | 28. desember 2015

I have a great idea. Once it charges fully. It waits about 10minutes then it immediately goes into draining the battery and once draining starts (since the car talks to tesla when charging) it marks this car and location so if they replug into this sc within the next 2 hrs it will continue to discharge the battery. This way it encourages people to leave right away.

sbeggs | 29. desember 2015

Great idea.

jordanrichard | 29. desember 2015

Well, I was just thinking of a simple solution that could be done via a software update, without having re-wiring stalls to flash or reengineer the SC to be able to suck battery power back out.

Besides, even if it could be rigged to draw energy out of the battery as a penalty for leaving your car there, why penalize someone like that if there is no one waiting for a stall?

Made in CA | 29. desember 2015

@Aoneone - I love it! Maybe use three colors - pulsing green to show it is charging, green to show it is at 80% or above, and some other color when it is just sitting there no longer charging.

Of course, all of this info for each stall should also be available on the Tesla app.

Bonlaw | 29. desember 2015

teslagiddy Wrote : "DECEMBER 28, 2015 NEW
Tesla app already has a "charging complete" notification option. People using superchargers should enable that option. It should be embedded into our culture: stalls are for charging only, not parking."

All it takes is for common courtesy - on a trip yesterday plugged in at SC. As soon as we received the notification we left the mall and opened up the stall. Not difficult. You basically know how long it will take to get to the charge desired.

Also used the new independent SC app and checked in along the way so that others know what they can expect.

Every bit of information and courtesy will help.

PBEndo | 29. desember 2015

If the location layout allowed for it, I would like to see the Superchargers placed between parking spots so 2 cars could access each cable from opposite sides. Then, if the cable would unlock when the desired charge level is reached, another car could start charging before the first car owner returns.

AoneOne | 29. desember 2015

@PBEndo: Indeed, if the car showed that it was done charging and could be unplugged, then the cable could charge the car in the adjacent stall.

Take a look at the Somerset, PA supercharger: 6 spots, in two rows of three spaces, backing against the other row. There are 6 supercharger pylons in a single row located along the median between the two rows of parking spots.

With a little adjustment, those six spots could be served by only three pylons, and the other three pylons could be moved to serve another six spots.,-79.0773711,107m/data=!3m1!1e3

AoneOne | 29. desember 2015

One further idea is to supply four charging cables from each supercharger stack instead of today's two cables. Instead of 1A, 1B, 2A, 2B, etc., we'd have 1A, 1B, 1C, 1D, 2A, 2B and so on, doubling the number of stalls and pylons, but maybe not adding much to the electronics cost. The third and fourth cars to plug into a given stack would charge quite slowly until the first cars had finished charging, but the additional spaces would virtually guarantee that every supercharger is operating near capacity, even if the occasional careless owner were tardy removing his or her fully-charged car.

It essentially automates PBEndo's suggestion above.

donaldmeacham1 | 29. desember 2015

Sounds like a good idea that could be easily implemented via software.

Jama | 29. desember 2015


Makes sure its flatbed.

tes-s | 29. desember 2015

+1 @AoneOne. But if they have the parking spaces available, why not simply power them fully with 135kW (or 150kW) per each two stalls?

If Tesla doubled the supercharger output, and shared it across 4 stalls instead of 2, wouldn't that pretty much eliminate the impact of one stall being ICEd or occupied by a charged Tesla? The other 3 stalls should be able to pull the full capacity most of the time.

nishin.raj | 29. desember 2015

Great idea!! I love it

AoneOne | 29. desember 2015

@tes: No doubt, full stacks would be better, but they'd cost more and require an upgrade of the electrical supply.

How about Tesla just adding more power to existing high-usage superchargers and unpair the stalls? That would make a real difference at peak times.

It seems that we could make a matrix of designs:

Pylons/Stack (Stack power):
2 (135 kW) upgradeable with more pylons to
3 or 4 (135 kW) upgradeable with more power to
3 or 4 (270 kw) upgradeable with still more power to
1 (100 kW)

Spaces per pylon:
1 (today) upgradeable with changes to the asphalt to
2 (back-to-back)

Charging progress/completion notification with software-only upgrades:
Owner via App (today) or
Patrons of that supercharger via car charging status lights or
Also cars navigating to that supercharger or
Cars considering navigating to that supercharger

Cable Removal:
Owner only (today) upgradeable w/ SW to
Anyone (once charging is complete)
Automatic w/ robotic cables.

If the property owner and the landscape are compatible, the two-stalls-per-pylon w/ unlocking upon completion, would be the easiest improvement.

If that's impractical (many pylons are hard up against the edge of the lot) adding more power, so each stall can charge at full power, would make the best use of the available landscape, at a cost in electronics and utility infrastructure.

The other variants (like four pylons per stack) only make sense for new or expanded locations: they don't help current installations.

Even with these variations, I'm confident that we haven't invented something beyond Tesla's imagination and I expect that Tesla's choice to continue with two pylons per stack and just add more capacity via expansion or new locations is a careful balance of cost and customer satisfaction.

Tstolz | 29. desember 2015

The solution depends on what the problem is. If cars at a Supercharger location are all charging and no spots are available, more stalls may be needed. If all stalls are taken and sme owners are simply 'parking' then notifications ... or more ... would be appropriate.

I'd suggest automatic notifications 5-10 minutes or so before charging is complete plus notifications when charging is complete ... with the expectation the owner moves the car regardless if someone is actively waiting or not. These are not parking stalls .. they are charging stalls. In other words what we have should suffice.

I have no idea if owners 'ICEing' stalls is an issue, but if it is, I suppose Tesla could look at revoking Supercharger privileges from these people and/or have them towed. It certainly isn't reasonable to park in a fueling stall ... gas stations certainly would not put up with it!

Burt Court | 29. desember 2015

Regardless of how many pylons/cables, it seems the biggest problem is real estate. Whats it take, 200+ sq ft per parking space plus turn in area.

mrspaghetti | 29. desember 2015

An even simpler variant of this very good idea: whenever the last supercharger is plugged in, text all owners at that location letting them know it's now full.

Dwdnjck@ca | 29. desember 2015

One thing that has not been mentioned on this thread is "unplug and go," when you have enough to make your next charging opportunity. Use the bottom half of the battery to charge at a higher rate, and spend less time topping off. Don't waste time "topping off" if you don't need to. Two 30 minute changes will get you farther than a one hour charge.

tes-s | 30. desember 2015

How about Tesla just adding more power to existing high-usage superchargers and unpair the stalls? That would make a real difference at peak times.

Not that much, unless most people are coming in empty and only charging for 20 minutes. 135kW or 150kW superchargers shared across 2 stalls would help - 120kW dedicated per stall is overkill.

Where there are 2 supercharger cabinets next to each other, they could be replaced with a "double-wide" 240kW supercharger that is plug-compatible - two power feeds and four pedestal feeds.

That is a more efficient sharing design than the current superchargers. Even if they don't retrofit older superchargers, they could deploy those going forward. Same power requirements, same number of parking spaces, but better throughput.

tes-s | 30. desember 2015

I'd suggest automatic notifications 5-10 minutes or so before charging is complete plus notifications when charging is complete

I get those now through my iPhone app.

tes-s | 30. desember 2015

One thing that has not been mentioned on this thread is "unplug and go," when you have enough to make your next charging opportunity.

Not only a time saver for the driver, but also good supercharger etiquette:

"When others are waiting, please leave when you have sufficient charge to travel to your next charging destination."

Tstolz | 30. desember 2015

tes-s ... Re current notifications. You got it! We have the tools we need right now.

Your current phone notifications 10 minutes before and when charging is complete should suffice.

Move your car when you are notified. These are charging stalls not parking stalls.

Tesla should consider revoking Supercharger privileges from owners who insist on 'parking' at Superchargers if this is a problem.

Parking at Superchargers is not reasonable behavior ... gas stations would tow you for doing this.

tes-s | 30. desember 2015

Your current phone notifications 10 minutes before and when charging is complete should suffice.

"Should" being the operative word. Even without notifications, people should have a good idea of when their car will be charged so they can come and move it.

jordanrichard | 30. desember 2015

Ok, so this thread has sort of gone off the rails. The "problem" only exists when someone pulls up needing a charge and all spots are taken. Otherwise it is not a problem, even if all the cars that are plugged in have stopped charging.

As I asked earlier, how many people here would interrupt their meal to hike all the way back to their car to move it, hike back to the restaurant to finish their cold lunch/dinner, if there were say 5 other stalls open for someone else to use?

The whole point to SC etiquette to is to not inconvenience another Tesla owner. Well, if there isn't another owner waiting for a stall, no one is being inconvenienced.

How does one know there is someone waiting for a stall, when you are not in sight of the stalls, a notification from Tesla.

Tstolz | 30. desember 2015

Dude ... just move your car when it's done. It takes but a moment. We simply need to develop the mindset that all charging stalls are for charging ... no parking ... no excuses ... it's really quite easy to do this as a small courtesy to others.

This goes for at any charger btw not just Superchargers. Moving your car when charging is complete needs to be a basic norm for all EV owners ... just like it is a norm to not ICE gas station pumps.

This issue is also why I think successful future EV charging busnesses models will be based on time connected btw. In this type of model if you want the right to park in an EV charging stall when you are done charging (ie to finish your dinner or whatever) .. no problem ... but you will pay for that right!

Damien.mccormack | 30. desember 2015

How about develop a capability like a 'meshed network' so that Tesla cars parked near eachother could share charge with eachother? Of course this would require owners to agree to share, but this is simply a function of an app and 'human factors'.