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Tesla launches new feature to help solar homeowners charge with excess solar power

Tesla is launching a new feature to help homeowners with rooftop solar to charge their Tesla vehicles with excess solar power.

Over the last few years, Tesla has made it clear that it is more interested in controlling a power load rather than bidirectional charging, which has become popular in the EV industry.

Earlier this month, the automaker made waves when it announced a plan to offer unlimited overnight charging for $30 per month. That’s all about controlling the load from electric vehicle charging.

Now we have learned about Tesla going after controlling electric vehicle charging in another way: charging from excess solar power.

A new update to the Tesla mobile app showed new code revealing a feature focused on allowing Tesla vehicles to charge from excess solar power:

The feature is not showing on the consumer-facing side of the app yet, but the code talks clearly about optimizing charging for owners with solar power:

“Plug in your vehicle at home during the day to charge using the excess clean energy generated by your solar system.”

It makes it sounds like you can link your car to a specific solar site, and when plugged in at the site, Tesla will monitor when the car can charge from excess solar – likely meaning that the car won’t be prioritized, but if there is excess solar, it will charge.

Top comment by Andrew Gladwell

Liked by 26 people

This is a good move, long overdue.

Here in Blighty we have been able to do this for ages - there is a company here called MyEnergi that makes the Zappi charger, this monitors your solar output and your consumption and permits you to charge your car with any excess, rather than exporting it to the grid, for which there is not a great payment available. Far better to fill your car with free electricity than defer it to later and pay extra, at much higher prices than you usually get for export.

Even if you charge cheaply overnight, cheap is still more than free.

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We can likely expect the new feature to be accessible in an upcoming Tesla mobile app update.

Electrek’s Take

There are not a lot of products that go better together than electric vehicles and solar power. Who wouldn’t want to be driving on sunshine?

I think there’s still room to optimize the use of the two products together, and that’s a good example.

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