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Thread: Can the Tesla be an emergency generator?

  1. #1
    Member rekoh's Avatar
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    Can the Tesla be an emergency generator?

    I was reading this article, and it got me thinking: Can the tesla be an emergency generator?


    here is the article:
    These kits turn your Prius into an emergency generator

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    Yes and no. Once you find a UPS with a similar voltage to the battery pack, you would have a fixed amount of time to run the unit and generate 120 V power. The reason it's better in a Prius is, the engine automatically starts as the traction battery voltage drops, providing power until you run it out of fuel... Well, there's nothing to recharge the battery pack in the Tesla... Also, I'm fairly certain Tesla would not be thrilled cycling the pack with this type of usage, I think there is even language in the warranty about not using it for this type of application.
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    Petroleum is for sissies ChadS's Avatar
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    I agree with Mitch. It's technically possible, but Tesla definitely frowns on it. Probably because they don't want somebody using it regularly and putting a whole bunch of extra cycles on the battery they are warranting.

    Perhaps someday they could sell a kit with a time monitor and/or a high enough price to allow this, but I doubt it's high on their priority list.
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    Member Bipo's Avatar
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    Nissan sells an electric box that converts DC frombthe battery (via CHAdeMO) into domestic AC. It costs about US$ 4.000 (€ 3.000).

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    Model S 03182 ElSupreme's Avatar
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    Nothing right now. But I plan on bolting my old 85kWh pack somewhere in my garage when I get a replacement, and using it as onsite power. Then I will buy electricity at cheap rates to charge it, then during peak times use battery instead of grid power. Coupled with Solar I could see a 50-75% drop in power costs. Not to mention helping out the power company a bunch by leveling their power.

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    Burrito Founder brianman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElSupreme View Post
    Nothing right now. But I plan on bolting my old 85kWh pack somewhere in my garage when I get a replacement, and using it as onsite power. Then I will buy electricity at cheap rates to charge it, then during peak times use battery instead of grid power. Coupled with Solar I could see a 50-75% drop in power costs. Not to mention helping out the power company a bunch by leveling their power.
    So I take it you're not doing the BRO (which involves trading in your old pack for the new one).
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    At one point I saw a very explicit statement/quote from a Tesla exec (either Elon or JB) that Model S could not be used as a standby power source. I don't know if that was short-term or long-term, or due to a technical issue or just the company's feeling. I imagine the latter...

    It seems simple -- especially if you have supercharger hardware -- to connect a unit that would close the contactors to the battery and provide the ~350VDC via a cable attached.

    It's a dangerous amount of voltage and current, for sure, and sizing an appropriate inverter might be a bit expensive.

    To keep power company linemen safe, it takes some safety equipment to ensure that you're not sending a voltage into the grid. You either need an automatic transfer switch or an interlock which prevents the generated power by the standby source from being sent onto the grid. This is why home solar installations don't operate when other power isn't present. All of this stuff makes the integration with your home power system more complex -- it is likely something that Tesla just doesn't want to get involved in.

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    This concept was covered in the excellent documentary Carbon Nation by Bill Kurtis (sp?)
    But not specifically to Tesla.

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    Member ToddRLockwood's Avatar
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    This is mentioned in the Model S warranty as something that will void the warranty...

    • Using the vehicle as a stationary power source (see page 3 of the vehicle warranty)
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  10. #10
    Model S 03182 ElSupreme's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brianman View Post
    So I take it you're not doing the BRO (which involves trading in your old pack for the new one).
    Nope. I want my old battery. Plus I don't really have $12k I want to drop right now.

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