Wouldn’t it be great if you could charge your Tesla with a longer cord?
You’ve probably even seen them lying around your garage next to where you park and charge your Tesla at night.
If you haven’t thought about it yet, you might be wondering if you can charge your Tesla with an extension cord.
Here’s what you should know before you try to charge your Tesla with an extension cord, even if you’re eager to plug everything in and give it a try.
You can charge your Tesla with an extension cord, but the company says you shouldn’t because it could cause a fire. However, you can buy extension cords that are made to work with Tesla chargers.
When it comes to how to charge them, Tesla cars are pretty flexible. You can even charge your Tesla while you’re on the road by using a generator.
If you’re thinking about trying to charge your Tesla with an extension cord, pay close attention to the information below.
Can I Use an Extension Cord to Charge My Tesla?
Since the answer to this question can sometimes seem to be both yes and no, let’s start by talking about the type of extension cord your Tesla needs to charge.
Remember that most standard extension cords are made to be used with low-current electronics and appliances. Electric vehicles, however, are not in this group.
Some people say that because this method can take several hours to charge your Tesla, it puts too much stress on the extension cord, making it more likely that it will get too hot and damage the insulation around the wires inside the cord.
We suggest that you buy a set of adapters from Tesla to avoid this risk.
The kits, which come with many different adapters, are made to fit many different types of standard outlets.
Once the adapters are in place, the charging rate can be changed to fit whatever is being charged, which in this case is your Tesla.
You should be fine as long as you plug one end of the cord into your Tesla, the other end into the charging station, and the charging station into an outlet.
Safety Considerations and Upgrades to Extension Cord Charging
Even if you are very careful when you use an extension cord to charge your Tesla, you should always keep safety in mind whenever you use a Tesla accessory.
The gauge of your extension cord is the first thing to consider.
For the best results and the most safety, you should use an extension cord with wiring that is 12 gauge and insulation that is a higher gauge.
If you do this, the cord will be strong enough to carry the current without getting too hot.
Next, don’t choose the longest extension cord you can find. Look for a cord that is no longer than 25 to 30 feet.
This is important because longer cords cause more voltage drop and resistance, which makes it more likely that the device will overheat.
Lastly, you should choose an extension cord that can be used both inside and outside.
Since Tesla’s charging parts are made to work in all kinds of weather, so should your extension cord.
Extension Cord Charging Timelines
If you decide to charge your Tesla with an extension cord, it will take different amounts of time.
Level 1 charging uses a 120V outlet and is the default setting for all electric cars on the road right now, including Tesla.
If you choose this option, your Tesla will add between 2 and 6 miles of range for every hour that it is plugged in.
Depending on how far your car can go on a single charge, this could take several days.
If you have a 240V outlet at home, you can use an extension cord to move up to Level 2 Charging.
If you do this, you can get anywhere from 14 to 35 miles of range per hour of charging.
But before you try this at home, make sure your extension cord will work with a 240V outlet.
If you do that, you might be able to charge your Tesla in less than eight hours.
Does the Extension Cord Affect Charging?
Yes, the length of the extension cord you use to charge your Tesla does change how it charges.
Certain extension cords are recommended for use with Tesla and other electric vehicles because this is so important for getting your Tesla charged up right and keeping things as safe as possible.
The Camco Power Grip Heavy Duty Outdoor 55195 is the extension cord that Tesla and other EV owners use the most.
This cord is one inch thick and 30 feet long. Its wires are made of 100% pure copper.
It has a coating that keeps fires from starting and a PVC sheath that can make charging your Tesla much safer.
Along with the extension cord, the wall sockets where the cord will be plugged in also affect how your Tesla charges.
Pay close attention to the wall socket you want to use, whether you’re at home or somewhere else.
If there are stains or burn marks on the outlet, it is likely broken.
Also, make sure the contacts are tight and not loose. Loose contacts can also be dangerous.
When choosing an extension cord, you should also make sure it has an easy-to-use plug, can be plugged in and out of a socket quickly and easily, and fits the types of outlets you will be using.
If you don’t pay attention to this detail and buy a bulky extension cord, the plug-in and maybe even your Tesla could be damaged if you have to struggle to plug in or unplug it.
Think of trying to fill a car’s gas tank with an eyedropper as an example of how choosing the right extension cord can affect how well your Tesla gets fully charged.
If you use an extension cord that can only safely transfer a certain amount of current back and forth, you may only be able to use a 110V outlet, which means it could take up to 100 hours to get a full charge.
But if you have a heavy-duty cord that can handle more work with its electricity, you can charge your Tesla in less than a half-day.
Is Waiting for a Full Charge My Only Option When Using an Extension Cord?
Not even close. Even though your Tesla might be able to go up to about 300 miles at a time, most people don’t drive that far in a single day.
In fact, research shows that most people only drive about 30 miles per day, which is about one-tenth of Tesla’s maximum range.
Even if you have to use a 110V outlet and a less powerful extension cord, your car will probably be charged enough in a few hours to let you go to work, run errands, and do other things.
If you take your Tesla on business trips, vacations, camping trips, or other trips, you should always bring the best extension cord with you so you can charge it.
So, whether your car is outside at a campground or in a hotel parking lot, you will be able to charge it quickly.
You’ll have to decide for yourself if you’re comfortable charging your Tesla with an extension cord, but having the right type of cord and any adapters you might need can make the process safer and easier.