Charging basics for electric vehicle newbies: Tesla's approach and tips simplifying charging in North America
## Charging Basics for Electric Vehicle Newbies
### Understanding EV Charging and Tesla's Approach
As more people reserve electric vehicles like the Tesla Model 3, understanding the basics of charging becomes essential. Bjorn Nyland, a Model S owner in Norway, has made numerous informative videos about his Tesla experiences on his YouTube page. One video, in particular, explains the fundamentals of electric vehicle (EV) charging and how Tesla approaches it. This video is especially helpful to those starting from scratch with their first EV.
It's important to remember that voltages and plugs differ between North America and Europe, so the necessary adapters will be supplied with every Tesla (J1172 adapter and Nema 14-50 come with the UMC). The CHAdeMO adapter costs extra if you want to use level 3 charging other than a Supercharger. It's likely that Tesla will also create a combo CCS adapter soon.
### Simplifying Charging in North America
North American EV drivers benefit from having less complexity when it comes to charging. For the most part, you can make do with what is supplied with the vehicle (the J1772 adapter, the UMC with a NEMA 14-50, and "regular 110V plug"). To use a supercharger in the US and Canada, simply pull up to a supercharger and plug in (assuming your Tesla is enabled for use).
US and Canadian Tesla owners have the option to further complicate and provide more flexibility in charging by obtaining adapters for the UMC and purchasing the CHAdeMO adapter from Tesla. At the start, like the Roadster before it, Tesla provided many adapters to allow the Model S to plug into various common 240V and 120V outlets available in North America. Since then, they have pulled back on the availability of Tesla-supplied adapters (many have been pulled, like the NEMA 6-50 (Welding) adapter) that is the "other" maximum amperage plug that Tesla has made for the UMC.
## Charging Tips and Considerations
### Charging in Hot Enclosed Areas
Be cautious when charging in hot enclosed areas like your garage. As the car cools the battery, it creates a lot of heat buildup in a closed garage. This causes more cooling and slows the charging process. It's best to charge in an open area so heat won't build up. In the winter, the added heat could be beneficial, but it can be problematic in hotter temperatures.
### Adapters and Connectors
Before purchasing a new electric vehicle, confirm the type of charging connectors required for your region. For example, Ontario EV chargers use J1772 for Level 2 and CHAdeMO for Level 3. If this is the case, you should purchase a CHAdeMO connector when buying your EV.
The J1772 adapter being mentioned is a completely independent device (not part of the UMC). The Model S and Model X include one with purchase, and extras are available on the Tesla website as well. The Roadster was built before the standard, and Tesla does sell an adapter, but there are other recommended options. It's expected that the Model 3 will come with one J1772 adapter in the US and Canada since those are the standards for these countries.
If you're moving or planning to install a charger at home, consider keeping your EVSE on the wall and getting an extra J1772. Some people carry one and keep one at home near their Chargepoint CT-500 for Tesla use. However, if you have a new HPWC, this might not be as important.