Tesla Caps Charging to 80% at Select High-Traffic Superchargers

  • Nick Jaynes has worked for more than a decade in automotive media industry. In that time, he's done it all—from public relations for Chevrolet to new-car reviews for Mashable. Nick now lives in Portland, Oregon and spends his weekends traversing off-road trails in his 100 Series Toyota Land Cruiser.

can be reached at nickjaynes@gmail.com
  • Nick Jaynes has worked for more than a decade in automotive media industry. In that time, he's done it all—from public relations for Chevrolet to new-car reviews for Mashable. Nick now lives in Portland, Oregon and spends his weekends traversing off-road trails in his 100 Series Toyota Land Cruiser.

can be reached at nickjaynes@gmail.com
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If you’ve ever tried to visit a Tesla Supercharger on a national holiday or in the proximity of a large regional event, you’ll know that wait times can become infuriating. Tesla realizes this. So it’s developed an update to help … sort of.

  • To improve throughput at its most heavily trafficked Superchargers, Tesla limits total State Of Charge to 80%.
  • Affected stations only account for 17% of total U.S. Superchargers.
  • 8% of stations limited 24/7; 9% limited only during peak hours.
  • Drivers on long routes that require a full charge can override the SOC cap.

Last week, Tesla quietly rolled out an update to some of its most heavily trafficked Supercharger stations, which would limit State Of Charge, or SOC (the total amount of charge your Tesla’s battery can receive), to top out at 80%. Owners who arrive at the station will be alerted to the charge limit, so they won’t be surprised when the charge abruptly ends, short of a full recharge.

According to Electrek, which was forwarded the internal memo announcing the policy shift, the update only affects 17% of all Superchargers in the U.S. Furthermore, only 8% will be capped at an 80% SOC at all times. The remaining 9% will be limited only during peak hours.

17% of all U.S. Supercharger stations will be limited to an 80% SOC. | Photo: Tesla

“80% SOC Limit will be enforced 24/7 at all impacted sites,” the memo read. “Please note, some sites will have 80% SOC limits enforced on a permanent basis while others will only be enforced on national holidays and to accommodate large regional events (e.g. Coachella).”

With the amount of potential charge these stations are capable of outputting adjusted down to 80%, Tesla expects the number of owners able to utilize the respective Supercharger stations to improve by 34%.

Smartly, Tesla engineers did design a way for owners to override the SOC cap. If the car’s trip planner routes the driver to the Supercharger in order to complete a long trip, the limit will be lifted for them. That is, only if more than an 80% charge is required for the driver to complete their pre-navigated route.


About the Author

  • Nick Jaynes has worked for more than a decade in automotive media industry. In that time, he's done it all—from public relations for Chevrolet to new-car reviews for Mashable. Nick now lives in Portland, Oregon and spends his weekends traversing off-road trails in his 100 Series Toyota Land Cruiser.

can be reached at nickjaynes@gmail.com
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