Tesla Model S Owners & Service Manuals

Tesla Model S: Charging

General

The Tesla Model S is an electrically powered vehicle. Energy is stored in the battery, which is a sealed unit containing Lithium-ion cells producing up to 1500 A of energy at up to 400V.

As the vehicle is driven, the battery is discharged. The touch screen, instrument cluster, and smartphone app inform the driver of the state of charge and the expected remaining range.

The vehicle can be charged using:

  • Mobile Connector: Included with the vehicle. Allows the vehicle to be plugged into a 240 volt outlet or a 120 volt outlet. Charges at up to 31 miles of range per hour of charge.
  • Wall Connector (WC): An optional Wall Connector is permanently installed on a 240 volt circuit and can be supplied with up to twice the amperage as the Mobile Connector if the vehicle is equipped with dual chargers. Charges at up to 62 miles of range per hour of charge.
  • Supercharger: Tesla Superchargers are used to quickly recharge the battery on long trips. A Supercharger can charge approximately half the battery capacity in 20 minutes. Supercharging is an optional feature for some models.

Charging times vary based on the voltage and current available from the power outlet. Charging times also depend on ambient temperature and the vehicle's Battery temperature. If the Battery is not within the optimal temperature range for charging, the vehicle will heat or cool the Battery before charging begins.

The vehicle is designed to be plugged in when not in use. There is no advantage to waiting until Battery level is low before charging; the Battery performs best when charged regularly. When plugged in, the vehicle wakes up as needed to automatically maintain a charge level that optimizes the lifetime of the Battery.

Discharging the Battery to 0% can permanently damage the Battery. To protect against a complete discharge, the vehicle enters a low power consumption mode when the charge level drops to 5%. In this mode, the Battery stops supporting the onboard electronics to slow the discharge rate.

Note: When the low power consumption mode is active, the auxiliary 12V Battery is no longer being charged and can completely discharge within twelve hours. If this occurs, the 12V battery needs to be jump-started or replaced before charging the vehicle.

Charging Precautions

Warning: The electrical circuits in the vehicle work on several different voltages. In addition to 12V circuits, the battery can produce up to a, potentially lethal, 400V, with a high current flow. It is imperative that all the instructions regarding electrical safety are followed, whether in this Manual, the Owner's Manual, or on labels attached to components on the vehicle. Always observe and obey the instructions; they are there for your safety.

Warning: Take special care with high voltage wiring (identified by the orange outer sleeving), their connectors, or the components connected to the wiring.

Warning: Never work on a vehicle while it is charging. The high voltage circuits will be live.

Warning: Never touch, cut, or open an orange high voltage power cable or high voltage component unless the vehicle electrical isolation procedure has been performed and you have confirmed that there is no high voltage present.

Warning: Never assume that the vehicle is shut off because it is silent. To ensure all circuits are isolated always perform the vehicle electrical isolation procedure.

Warning: After disabling the vehicle, power is maintained for 90 seconds in the SRS system and 1 minute in the high voltage electrical system. If the disabling procedure cannot be performed, proceed with caution as there is no assurance that the high voltage electrical system and/or SRS are disabled. Never touch, cut, or open any orange high-voltage power cable or high voltage component until after the battery has been disabled.

Warning: Never cut into the sealed battery enclosure due to the high voltage and electrocution risks.

Warning: The Wall Connector should only be installed and tested by a Tesla certified electrician.

Warning: Never try to modify the cables or connectors on the Wall Connector or mobile connector.

Warning: Always ensure that the Mobile Connector is located in a clean and dry area during use.

Warning: Never use an extension cable with the Mobile Connector.

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