Tips, Tricks & Trends

How Much Does It Cost to Use a Tesla Supercharger?

The Tesla supercharger stations are the pinnacle of electric vehicle charging stations. Unfortunately, the prices of these can vary widely. It depends on a few different factors, including location, time, price of electricity, and the speed at which you want to charge.

Tesla supercharger locations

A row of Tesla superchargers at a station
A row of Tesla charging stations with an electric vehicle plugged in | Philipp Schulze/picture alliance via Getty Images

Tesla has over 20,000 superchargers strategically placed around the world. These superchargers are meant to make long trips and cross-country travel easier.

Because the stations are placed in convenient locations, the prices for each one can vary. These numbers are just estimations to give a potential cost for charging at a Tesla supercharger station.

You can check the going rate for your area using the U.S. Energy Information Administration list. This shows the prices throughout the U.S. for the past two years for residential, commercial, industrial, and transportation industries.

Current Automotive pulled some prices off the Tesla website, which we can use as an example. If you choose to charge per minute, it is $0.26 per minute above 60 kW. Under 60 kW, it is only $0.13. If you charge by kWh, it is $0.28 per kWh drawn from the charger.

For example, if your car requires 40 kWh to recharge and the rate is $0.28, your charge will cost $11.20. If the rate drops and you are only charged $0.18 per kWh, that is only $7.20.

The time at which you charge can also impact the price. Peak-hour prices will be higher than prices in the middle of the night when electricity use is lower.

Can you get Tesla supercharging for free?

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There are a few ways to get some free charging from Tesla. One of the ways is to participate in the Referral Program. Tesla says you can get 1,000 miles of free supercharging with each person you refer that purchases a new Tesla.

“Our goal is to build the best clean energy products and help Tesla owners share their excitement and experiences with others. As an owner, with the Referral Program, you’ll earn awards every time your referral link is used by your friends and family when they transition to sustainable energy and grow our community.”

Tesla

If you own a Tesla, you can open the app to find your referral link. This offer also applies to solar panel purchases.

Tesla also runs specials occasionally that will include free supercharging. According to Electrek, all Model 3 and Model Y vehicles sold in December of 2020 received one free year of supercharging. This was to push the sales of the vehicles at the end of the year.

Tesla has occasionally offered such incentives toward the end of the quarter to ramp up sales. So, plan to buy your Tesla near quarter-end!

Don’t rely on superchagring

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Supercharging should be used sparingly. Because the process is faster and stronger, it can wear down your battery if used too frequently. It is better (and cheaper) to charge in your own home overnight.

You can charge at home by installing a charger somewhere convenient or just plugging in with the Tesla-provided plug. If you have a charger with an app, you can schedule your car to charge overnight when electricity is cheaper.

The Tesla wall connector is sold for $500 and can be installed right in your home. It can add up to 44 miles of range per hour. This translates to 11.5 kW or a 48 amp outlet.

The wall connector can charge more than one car at a time for added convenience. It is compatible with the Model S, Model 3, Model X, and Model Y.