Electric vehicles have been gaining popularity in the car market for some time now and Tesla still remains at the top of the list of manufacturers. Tesla owners don’t have to pay for gas, but they do have to pay to charge their cars.
Charging a Tesla’s cost depends on electricity rates, charging speed, and battery capacity. Typically, it ranges from $8 to $20 for a complete charge.
How Much Does It Cost To Charge a Tesla at a Charging Station?
The cost to charge your Tesla at a charging station can range from free to $43. Several factors can change this cost, the most important being the size of your Tesla battery pack and your location. After all, different-sized batteries take different amounts of time to charge and the cost of electricity varies by location.
The amount of money you’ll pay to charge your vehicle at a charging station largely depends on the charging station you use as well. Prices at Electrify America stations range from $0.31 to $0.43 per kilowatt hour. However, some charging stations, like Volta stations, are ad- and retailer-supported, and they are completely free to use.
Considering most Tesla vehicles have a 50 kWh battery, the cost to charge the vehicle at a charging station ranges from absolutely free to $21.50. However, if you have a 100kWh battery, it may cost up to $43 to charge your vehicle at a charging station.
Is It Expensive To Charge a Tesla at Home?
In the United States, the cost of electric utility services varies greatly depending on your location. For example, consumers in Idaho pay just over $0.11 per kWh while consumers in California pay over $0.25 per kWh. However, the national average cost of electricity per kWh is $0.16. Considering this average cost:
- A 50 kWh Tesla battery costs about $8 to charge.
- A 100 kWh Tesla battery costs about $16 to charge.
On the other hand, if your home has solar power, your cost will be substantially less.
How Much Does It Cost To Charge at a Tesla Supercharger?
Tesla Superchargers are the next big thing in electric vehicle charging and although Tesla doesn’t share its pricing, several reviews suggest it costs an average of $25 to fill up at Tesla Supercharge stations. Tesla currently operates more than 40,000 Level 3 Superchargers around the world. They’re capable of extra-fast charging speed, giving Tesla drivers between 162 and 200 miles of range in about 15 minutes.
Unfortunately, Tesla doesn’t share the fee it charges at its Supercharger stations, likely because that fee changes by location. Nonetheless, Tesla charges by the minute, and the rate per minute depends on which of the four charging speed tiers it offers.
How Much Does Charging a Tesla Affect Your Electricity Bill?
The effect charging your Tesla will have on your electric bill largely depends on two factors:
- Electricity cost per kWh in your location.
- How much you drive.
Simply put, the more your energy company charges you for electricity, the more it will cost you to charge a Tesla at home. Moreover, the more you drive, the more you’ll need to charge.
The average American drives about 1,200 miles per month. Teslas have between 50 and 100 kWh batteries with the average Tesla range being around 267 miles. With the average cost per kWh in the United States being $0.16, the average increase to your electric bill if you charge your Tesla at home 100% of the time would be somewhere between $35.92 and $71.84.
Keep in mind that these are broad averages. Drawing on the examples presented, if you live in California, you’ll likely see a much higher increase to your electricity bill than someone who lives in Idaho would.
Considering that the average size of a gas tank is between 13 and 16 gallons and the national average cost of gas according to AAA is $3.45 per gallon as of Feb. 9, 2023, it costs between $44.85 and $55.20 to fill up a car with gasoline. As such, it’s significantly cheaper to charge most Teslas. You may want to consider going green and saving a few bucks on transportation in the process.
FAQFind answers to the most common questions about charging Teslas below.
- How much does it cost to charge a Tesla for one hour?
- The cost per hour largely depends on where you charge. If you're at a Supercharger, it wouldn't make sense to charge for one hour, as you'll likely fill up in about 15 minutes. What really matters is the cost per kWh, which varies based on your geographical location and whether you charge at home or use a charging station.
- Do you have to use the Tesla Charging network?
- You can charge Teslas at various other charging networks in addition to the Tesla Charging network. However, you may need an adapter to do so.
- Is it cheaper to charge a Tesla at home or at a Supercharger?
- It is typically cheaper to charge a Tesla at home than it is to charge your vehicle at a Supercharger or any other charging station. That is, unless the charging station is ad- and retail-supported, making it free to use.
Jessica Moore contributed to the reporting for this article.
Information is accurate as of Feb. 9, 2023.
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- SaveOnEnergy. 2023. "Compare Electricity Rates by State."
- Way. "What Is the Capacity of a Car’s Gas Tank?"
- InsideEVs. 2022. "Tesla Now Has Multiple Battery Options: Which One Should You Choose?"
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