Tesla Home Charger Cost: How Much To Charge At Home?

by Conner Mckay

One of the benefits of electric cars is that you can charge them at home when not being used, so you don’t have to stop at a gas station on your commute. If you’re thinking of buying a Tesla, you’re probably wondering how much will a Tesla home charger cost?

There are several ways you can charge your Tesla at home. And yes, you can charge it with your existing outlet at home. We’ll discuss all the potential solutions and the costs. Here’s our table of contents to help you navigate:

Tesla Home Charger Cost: Using A Standard Outlet

Before we get into installing a Tesla wall connector for your garage, consider sharing your Tesla by using a standard outlet. Yes, if you have an outlet in your garage, you can charge your Tesla by using that. This is what’s often referred to as Level 1 charging. Although it won’t be the ideal solution if you want to charge quickly.

Every Tesla comes with a Tesla Mobile Connector, this includes a NEMA 5-15 adapter that can connect to your garage’s standard outlet. This means you can simply plug your Tesla into your home, and you can charge it at no extra cost. Well, except for the electricity that you need for charging the car.

Anyway, apart from that, it’s completely free and doesn’t need extra work. Keep in mind that your standard outlet only supplies between 110 – 120 volts, meaning charging won’t be fast. It usually gives your Tesla about 4 miles worth of range per hour of charging.

So, if you charge it overnight for eight hours, you’ll get an extra 24 miles of range at the very most. Not a lot, but perhaps not a big deal if you live nearby a Tesla Supercharger or your office is near one.

As mentioned, this requires no extra cost or work. But how much will it add to your electricity bill? We won’t bother you with the exact maths. According to electrek, it’ll cost around $0.14 per kWh. If your Tesla has a 100 kWh battery, this means it’ll cost you around $14 to fully charge it.

Keep in mind that these standard outlets are not energy efficient. So, it might be anywhere between $14 – $17 to fully charge your Tesla. Still, cheaper than filling up a tank of gas, no?

Tesla Home Charger Cost: Using A Dryer Outlet

For those unfamiliar, a hairdryer typically requires a different outlet with an output of 240 volts. Hairdryers, and other dryers in general, need a more powerful outlet to supply enough power for the heating elements.

Now, you can use this outlet to charge your Tesla at home as well. And since it has more output, it’ll charge your Tesla faster than the standard 120v outlet. It’ll give your Tesla anywhere between 12 – 30 miles of range per hour of charging. This is often referred to as Level 2 charging.

Of course, you’ll need to install it first if you don’t already have one in your garage. The cost to install a dryer outlet is usually between $250 – $500. However, it may be higher, especially if you need to upgrade your home’s main panel. In this case, it’ll add anywhere between $500 – $4,000 to the total cost.

Additionally, you’ll need to buy a different adapter for your Tesla. This can either be the NEMA 10-30, 14-30, or 15-30 depending on the plug type of the dryer outlet.

It’s a good idea to buy an original Tesla adapter, rather than buying one from a different brand on Amazon. You’ll find Tesla sells all sorts of adapter on their website, and it costs between $35 – $45.

Can I Install The Dryer Outlet Myself?

We don’t recommend you do this yourself if you’re not a professional electrician. Working with electricity is always dangerous, even more so without the proper knowledge, tools, and safety equipment.

The video above is a little lengthy, but it will give you a good idea of the amount of work that goes into installing a new outlet in your home. We recommend finding an electrician to do the job for you.

As mentioned, this will cost between $250 – $500 on average. The exact cost will vary depending on where you live. And whether or not your home needs an electrical panel upgrade. Again, find an electrician and ask for a quote to get a more accurate estimate.

Tesla Home Charger Cost: Tesla Wall Connector

This is probably the reason why you’re here, to find out the cost of installing a Tesla home charger. Or as Tesla calls it, the Tesla Wall Connector. So, how much will it cost? Tesla quotes the installation is anywhere between $750 – $1,500 for a straightforward installation.

However, this depends on the layout of your garage and the existing electrical system in your home and garage. Tesla states that things like a long wire run, cable management, and pedestal installation will add to the cost. Additionally, you’ll need to check if your home’s main electrical panel needs upgrading as well to support the charger.

Tesla Home Charger Cost Breakdown

The current charger (Gen 3 Wall Connector) itself costs $495 at the time of writing. As mentioned, a straightforward installation will cost $1,500 at most. This includes the cost of wiring, installing a new circuit breaker for the charger, the charger itself, and labor.

The largest cost will probably come from upgrading your home’s main electrical panel and power service if you need to upgrade them. Most homes have a 100 amp service. However, it’s recommended that you upgrade to a 200 amp service for the main panel if you don’t already have it.

This is especially true if you have other heavy electrical appliances in your home, such as a fridge, microwave, and air conditioning. You will easily go over the limit of your home’s power service if you use these appliances and install a home charger.

According to Home Advisor, upgrading to a 200 amp panel will cost somewhere between $750 – $2,000. Meanwhile, a 400 amp panel costs between $1,500 – $4,000. You’ll need to check with a professional electrician for a more accurate estimate since every home is different.

However, as a rough estimate, you’ll need to prepare at least around $2,500 to upgrade your home’s panel and install the Tesla home charger.

Tesla Wall Connector Specs

The Tesla Wall Connector has a 24 feet cable, multiple power settings, and is waterproof so you can install it outdoors if you don’t have a garage. It can also connect to WiFi and you can wirelessly control it, such as restricting charging access. Additionally, it comes with a 48-month (4-year) limited warranty

The main thing you’re wondering about is probably the charging speed. The charging speed of the Tesla Wall Connector will depend on the amperage of the circuit breaker that you install for the home charger.

According to Tesla, the Wall Connector can work with a 60 amp breaker with a maximum output of 48 amps. This will deliver anywhere between 30 – 44 miles of range per hour depending on the model.

Tesla Home Charger Cost

However, note that each Tesla model has its own maximum amperage. This determines the charging capabilities of the car itself. For example, a rear-wheel-drive Tesla Model 3 has a maximum charge rate of 32 amps. This means that even if the charger can supply more power, the car will not take any more than its maximum amperage.

You should check the maximum charging capability of your Tesla before proceeding with any work. You can do this by tapping on the lightning bolt icon on your Tesla’s touchscreen.

One last thing you should note, you won’t be able to install a 60 amp circuit breaker if your house only has a 100 amp power service. Electricians will insist you install a 20 amp breaker at most, which limits the charging speed of the Tesla Wall Connector.

So, you can still install the charger with a 100 amp power service. However, you won’t get the full charging speed. With a 20 amp circuit breaker, you’ll get about the same charging speed as a 240-volt dryer outlet.

Tesla Wall Connector Installation

So, let’s say your home’s electrical system can support it, and the installation costs are within your budget. How do you install a Tesla Wall Connector at your home?

To install the wall connector, you’ll need to find an electrician as Tesla themselves doesn’t provide the installation service. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Find an electrician. Thankfully, Tesla has a find electrician tool to make it easier for you. Simply enter your location, and it will return results for recommended electricians near you.
  2. Request a quote from the electrician. Tesla recommends installing a 60 amp circuit (if your car can support it). Some electricians may be able to give you a quote by email, making the process faster and easier.
  3. Once you have a quote and found an electrician you’re happy with, order the Tesla Wall Connector from Tesla’s website. This costs $495, and another $425 if you want a pedestal with it.
  4. Afterward, forward the shipment confirmation to your electrician so you can schedule your installation.

That’s it, the process is fairly straightforward and sounds simple enough. And thanks to the find electrician tool from Tesla, it makes finding an electrician that knows how to do it much easier. But what if you want to do it yourself?

Tesla Wall Connector DIY Installation

Again, we don’t recommend doing electrical installations yourself unless you have the proper know-how. But if you’re interested in knowing what the process entails, here’s a video:

Essentially, you’ll want to figure out how to wire the charger to your main electrical panel first. The video above uses PVC tubing to cover the wiring of the charger. If you want to plant the wires in the ground or inside a wall, that’s going to cost a lot more money.

There’s a total of three wires; two hot wires and one ground wire. Connect the two hot wires to the circuit breaker, and the ground wire to a grounding screw. Afterward, connect the wires inside the charger to the appropriate slots. Note that you should always turn off the breaker every time you’re working with your house’s electrical system.

Then turn on the breaker, and use a multimeter to test if all the connections are working properly. Afterward, turn the breaker off again, and install the charger. It’s fairly simple: install the cover, and tighten several screws.

Once the installation is done, you’ll need to connect the charger to your WiFi. This allows for the charger to receive firmware updates automatically to make sure it stays up to date and working properly. Afterward, plug the charger into your Tesla and see if it works.

Note that Tesla does not provide the wires, circuit breakers, or any of the tools and devices necessary for the installation. If you want to do the job yourself, you’re going to have to make a trip to Home Depot and buy these things on your own.

Tesla Home Charger Cost: 3rd Party Options

At this point, you might be wondering if there are home chargers from 3rd party brands that might be cheaper than the Tesla Wall Connector. And yes there are, here are some that EV enthusiasts often recommend:

  1. ChargePoint Home Flex EV Charger. Up to 37 miles of range per hour of charge, depending on the car. 23-foot long cable, and can be installed outdoor. Comes with a 3-year warranty and 24/7 customer support, but costs a hefty $978 just for the hardware.
  2. JuiceBox EV Charger. About the same charging speed as a Tesla Wall Connector, but it has voice control via Alexa. Works with almost any EV, but costs $698 before installation.
  3. Emporia Smart EV Charger. Compatible with any EV and can charge as fast as Tesla’s Wall Connector. Comes with a 3-year warranty, control via an app, and costs slightly less at $399 before installation.

If you have a Tesla, we think it’s better to just use the Tesla Wall Connector than any of the 3rd-party chargers. It’s been designed to work specifically with your Tesla and is generally cheaper than most 3rd-party chargers out there.

Additionally, you can charge other EVs using a Tesla Wall Connector with the help of an adapter. Overall, we don’t see any incentives to use a 3rd-party charger if you have a Tesla.

Charging Multiple Electric Cars At Once

Several Gen 3 Tesla Wall Connectors can be connected to the same circuit breaker and share the power between up to six Wall Connectors. This is thanks to a ‘Power Sharing’ firmware, which intelligently manages the power-sharing between connectors that are connected to the same WiFi network.

This is very helpful if you have limited power service at your home. However, it does mean the connectors will have to split the power. As a result, charging will be slower. Additionally, we think it’s a very expensive solution. You’ll have to buy two Tesla Wall Connectors, which costs $990 just for the hardware before installation.

We believe a better solution would be to use a dryer outlet and use a power splitter such as the NeoCharge Smart Splitter. You simply plug it into a 240-volt dryer outlet, and it will split power to charge two electric cars.

Granted, it still costs a hefty $499, but it’s still cheaper than buying two Tesla Wall Connectors. And you don’t have to do any extra work, apart from installing a dryer outlet if you don’t already have one. It’s available in three different plugs, which are the NEMA 10-30, 14-30, and the 14-50 version costs an extra $50.

The product page states that it has several charging configurations. You can set it by setting the maximum amperage your car takes, which you can do in your Tesla. Or there’s also an app for the splitter that you can use to remotely configure it.

Overall, we think this is the better – and definitely cheaper – solution to charge two EVs at once. It’s still quite expensive, but it’s a smart splitter that will ensure you can safely charge two EVs at once.

Tesla Home Charger Cost FAQ

We’re sure you have a lot more questions about installing a home charger and charging your Tesla at home. Here are some answers you might find helpful:

Is A Tesla Home Charger Worth It?

We believe most people don’t need a Tesla home charger. This is because the average commuting distance for most people is about 40 miles per day. This means you don’t need fast charging when charging your car overnight. In most cases, using a dryer outlet to charge your Tesla overnight will suffice.

There’s even less reason to install a home charger if you live near a Tesla supercharging station. Their superchargers can give your Tesla 200 miles of range in just 15 minutes, much faster than even the Tesla home charger. Not to mention, Tesla superchargers are sometimes free.

Note that we don’t recommend using fast charging all the time. Fast charging will heat the battery. This can induce faster battery wear, shortening its lifespan.

If you want our advice, charging your Tesla via a dryer outlet seems like the sweet spot. In most cases, it won’t cost more than $500. And it will be reasonably fast so that you’ll have enough mileage in your Tesla to do your commute the next day.

How Should I Charge My Tesla?

To extend the lifespan of your Tesla’s battery, you should charge between 40% – 80%. Charging your Tesla – or any other electronics with lithium-ion batteries – to a hundred percent can reduce the battery’s lifespan. You should only charge it to 100% if you’re going on a long trip where you need the maximum mileage.

Otherwise, best to not let it go completely flat or fully charge it. Managing temperature is also an important thing, which is why you should always charge your Tesla indoors or in a shade. We recommend reading our article about Tesla battery lifespan to learn more.

Does A Tesla Wall Connector Need To Be Connected To WiFi?

No, you can use the Tesla Wall Connector without connecting to WiFi. However, it’s still recommended so that the device can receive firmware updates to stay up to date and ensure optimum performance.

How Long Does It Take To Install Home Charging?

A straightforward job will take several hours at most. But upgrades to your home’s main panel and other additional jobs such as planting the cables inside a wall or underground may take more than two days to finish.

Can I Install Home Charging If I live In An Apartment Or Condo?

Apartments and condos are required by law to allow EV charging. Incentives may even be available to alleviate costs, check the U.S. Department of Energy website for more information.

Can I Install A Tesla Supercharger At Home?

No, the Tesla supercharger requires dedicated transformers and utility connections that are not available for residential use. So, the fastest charging you can get at home is by using the Tesla Wall Connector, which is Level 2 charging and slightly faster than using a dryer outlet.

You can easily find a Tesla supercharger by going into ‘Settings’, then ‘Navigation’, and then ‘Trip Planner’ on your Tesla’s touchscreen. Most supercharger stations are open 24 hours a day, and many users have stated they’re reliable so you can use them almost any time.

Tesla Home Charger Cost: Wrap Up

To summarize, there are three ways you can charge your Tesla at home. The first is to use a standard 120-volt outlet, which gives your Tesla about 4 miles of range per hour of charging.

Then the faster and still reasonably affordable option is to use a 240-volt dryer outlet, which can give anywhere between 12 – 30 miles of range per hour of charging, depending on your Tesla’s model and battery size. It’ll cost you at most $500 in most cases to install a dryer outlet.

The fastest possible option would be to use a Tesla Wall Connector, provided that your home has a 200-amp power service. Otherwise, you won’t be able to install a 60-amp circuit breaker, which will limit the charging speed of the Wall Connector. Under ideal conditions, the wall connector can give you up to 44 miles of range per hour of charging.

A straightforward installation of the Tesla Wall Connector will cost $1,500 at most, according to Tesla’s estimates. But if you need to upgrade your home’s power service to 200 amps (which is recommended), you can expect the total cost to be at least $2,500.

Tesla Home Charger Cost

We think the best overall option is to use a dryer outlet to charge your Tesla. Not only this is cheaper, but you can also use a power splitter to charge two EVs simultaneously for less than half the cost of installing two home chargers.

Additionally, most people don’t need the charging speed of a Wall Connector. A dryer outlet will suffice and will give you enough range for your daily commute after charging overnight. Considering that Tesla has an excellent charging network across the United States, there’s even less reason to install a dedicated home charger. Hopefully, this has been a helpful article for you.

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