Can You Use a Portable Generator to Power a Tesla

Tesla motors are the gold standard of electric cars. They have revolutionized how people view electric vehicles and set a standard for luxurious cars.

Electric cars are vehicles powered by electric motors containing energy gotten from rechargeable batteries.

Tesla builds efficient, sleek, and beautiful-looking cars that run on clean energy. All Tesla models are built to reach high speeds and offer high-speed acceleration. When you invest in a Tesla,  you can expect maximum performance.

How do Tesla cars work?

tesla car

Like all-electric cars, the primary energy source for a Tesla car is electricity, making them excellent choices as far as keeping the earth’s environment safe is concerned. There is no doubt that fragile amounts of carbons are emitted from the wear of tires and brakes, but these are far less when compared to the burning of fossil fuels.

Unlike hybrid cars, the batteries of Tesla cars cannot be charged while running them. Thus they have to be fully charged before the vehicle moves.  The charged batteries generate energy that powers the motor of the vehicle and, in turn, moves the car as a whole.

The batteries in most electric cars, including Tesla models, are Lithium-ion based. This type of battery is chosen because of its high power and because it emits high energy density.

Because every electronic device runs on electricity, it would have to be charged. Electric cars are often charged from charging stations. These stations are often owned and installed by homeowners. There are also public charging stations similar to gas stations. Each car comes with its unique charging plug because there is yet to be a universal charging plug for all electric cars.

The interval between charges depends on the battery capacity as well as the capacity of the charger. For instance, many Tesla motors have about 250Kw charging, taking up to 30 minutes to charge fully.

Yes! You can charge your Tesla with a Portable Generator

Looking at your users’ manual, you are specifically told not to charge your Tesla with a portable generator. But we both know life happens, and we cannot help some events.

Everyone needs a Plan B, and your generator serves as an alternative for times when there is a power outage. It might sound contradictory that vehicles made not to run on fossil fuel can be charged with fossil fuel-powered generators. But it is a backup plan that can come in handy when you are stranded in a remote area.

You want to read this before you start charging Your Tesla with a Generator

The good news that you will not have to be stranded in places with power outages comes with clauses. You are not able to use all portable generators to charge a Tesla. Certain factors go into choosing a generator to charge your vehicle. These include:

1.      A clean sine wave

Your portable generator must give off outputs with a clear drawn sine wave. The charging system of a Tesla can detect if the wave being generated is pure or not.

Clearly, your best bet would be charging with an inverter. There are inexpensive inverters that generate modified sine waves. These do not count as pure waves as they are shaped more like squares than the curved sine wave.

On noticing an impure wave, the safety features of the vehicle would not allow your car to get charged till the power is stable. This is advantageous to you as a power surge could lead to damage to the systems of your car.

2.      Your portable generator must be grounded.

Grounding of your generator is a precautionary method to avoid shocks, sparks, and irregularities in electric systems.

For many generators, the frame or body build would suffice. But for generators without, an adapter plug can be used. This would serve to bridge the earth and the neutral points.

You could help your generator get grounded by driving a metal rod to the earth and connecting it to the generator.

If the charging system of your Tesla notices that the grounding of the portable generator is not properly done, it will not charge your vehicle. All of these serve as safety measures, so your Tesla is not damaged by electric surges.

How can I charge my Tesla using a portable generator?

Noting all these precautions, you can commence charging just as you would with regular power. You power up the generator and have your charging plug connected to your vehicle.

It is advised that you begin at a low charging rate and gradually increase with time. You can keep adjusting till 28-30 amps. Eyes on not overloading your generator!

The power of the generator would determine how quickly your vehicle would charge. To get a full charge, you might have to charge overnight. For instance, you might spend 24 hours using a 4KW generator to fully charge your vehicle.

Seeing, however, that using a portable generator is a back-up plan, you might not need a full charge and may fire up as soon as you have enough power to continue your journey.

In Summary

Yes, a portable generator can be used to charge a Tesla. Although, it is not advisable from your user’s manual because of the inconsistent power many portable generators give off. If the power produced is right, it can be an excellent alternative.

You must ensure the type of generator being used conforms to all the energy requirements, such as having a good sine wave output and being properly grounded. No doubt it would take a while to get a good charge, but it can be trusted to get you out of a tight situation.

A handy generator would still need regular servicing. You would definitely still need gas to power this generator.

You would be able to carry a generator along with you as you travel or have one handy at home. Bear in mind that charging while driving is not possible, so it will still require you to turn off the engine and wait a while till you have sufficient power for your trip.