Tesla makes fully sustainable EV charging a reality with ‘Charge on Solar’ technology

  • Tesla launches ‘Charge on Solar’ in the UK, enabling zero-cost vehicle charging using surplus solar energy.
  • Available through Tesla App update (version 4.30.5) in Europe, promoting clean energy practices.
  • Easy setup, including features like Scheduled Charging and Powerwall integration for optimised operation.

Revolutionising zero-cost charging with Tesla ‘Charge on Solar’ breakthrough

Tesla has introduced a groundbreaking feature in the UK, termed ‘Charge on Solar’. This innovative addition enables Tesla vehicle owners with a Powerwall and solar infrastructure to charge their electric vehicles using surplus energy, eliminating extra costs. The feature comes as part of a recent software update, specifically embedded in the Tesla App version 4.30.5, presently accessible in European countries, including Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, and the UK.

To utilise Charge on Solar, users must ensure compatibility with the requisite hardware and software. This involves owning a Tesla vehicle (Model S, Model 3, Model X, or Model Y, with exclusions for 2012-2020 Model S and 2015-2020 Model X), a Powerwall with solar on-site (Powerwall firmware 23.12.10 or higher), and the Tesla app version 4.30.5 or higher. This integration allows users to tap into clean energy sources for their vehicle charging needs.

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The setup process is straightforward. Users navigate the Tesla app, select their vehicle, tap ‘Charge on Solar,’ and follow the prompts to set charge limits and location. The app introduces a sun slider for seamless adjustment of charge limits sourced from solar and the grid.

Additional features and integrations:

Scheduled Charging is an additional feature augmenting user flexibility. This function permits users to charge their vehicle’s battery with excess solar power until a designated time, after which the vehicle can seamlessly transition to charging from any available source up to the lower charging limit. This scheduling capability is particularly advantageous for those on time-of-use rate plans, optimizing solar energy consumption during daylight hours and shifting to grid charging during off-peak periods.

Tesla’s Powerwall, a home energy storage solution, cohesively integrates with the system across various modes. Storm Watch prioritises charging from any available source in anticipation of severe weather events. Backup Reserve ensures that the Powerwall charges to a predetermined percentage before utilising excess solar power for the vehicle. The Self-Powered mode optimises charging operations, allowing the vehicle to charge on excess solar until reaching the set limit.

Solar charging represents a notable stride towards sustainable and economically viable EV charging. Tesla owners now have the opportunity to embrace an integrated ecosystem, seamlessly merging solar energy, Powerwall storage, and electric vehicle charging in an environmentally conscious manner. This development signifies a tangible step forward in total clean energy transportation. Could we see technology like this used to cover the roofs of depots in the future?

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