BMW i3 Charging On Tesla HPWC – Video


BMW i3 Charging On Tesla HPWC

BMW i3 Charging On Tesla HPWC

With Tesla destination chargers popping up all over the U.S., wouldn’t if be swell if other electric cars could use those charge points?  (with permission of course)

Turns out that with the use of an adapter, other electric cars can indeed use the Tesla destinations chargers (Tesla HPWC):

“BMW i3 charging on a Tesla HPWC EVSE using my adapter. This adapter also allows most non-Tesla electric vehicles to charge up where Tesla HPWC equipment is the only option available. It only works with Tesla’s AC charging equipment. DOES NOT WORK WITH THE TESLA DC SUPERCHARGER! This adapter has been used successfully with the BMW i3, Nissan Leaf, Toyota RAV4 EV, and Ford C-Max Energi.”

The question of course is: Is this an infringement on Tesla technology and designated spots usage rights when installed in publically accessible areas?  Still, it would be a handy adapter to have at home/privately.

Via YouTuber – ngvconversion .

Categories: BMW, Charging

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69 Comments on "BMW i3 Charging On Tesla HPWC – Video"

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And how much there is Tesla destination charger around?
Not sure that is a lot of help, although every bit is useful.
The big bang is who would be the first major to share the supercharger network.

You can look here and filter for destination chargers.,-66.94,25.82,-124.39?search=destination%20charger,&name=us

The answer is; quite a lot.

Big bang as in good or bad?

If sharing supercharger network is like ModelS in that it’s one time prepay, then use as much as you like, it will be awful for everyone (long waits, etc).

But if it’s reasonable pay per use that’s slightly more than home charging at base electric rate for Tesla to recoup some cost, it will be fantastic for everyone, especially the upcoming large battery BEV. That should also allow to Tesla to recoup some cost for maintaining the chargers while new chargers are built out from Tesla’s high end car sales that include “free” charging. There will be fewer high end cars so the crowding caused by them would be much easier to deal with.

Well if someone takes a license to the Superchargers, they will have to pay for it. That will allow the build out to go even faster.

I bet to sell adapters like that would violate some fancy Tesla patent and is therefore illegal. On he other hand… didn’t Tesla say all there patents are (sic) belong to you (us)?

And why do you bet that? The HPWC protocol is said to be the same as J1772, just a different connector. This is almost certainly true, given than you can slap a simple adapter onto the end of a J1772 and plug it into a Tesla. Perhaps you’re mistaking this for a Tesla Supercharger? (Which I’ve seen various claims about, but nothing definitive.)

Individuals that make and use these unauthorized/unapproved adapters do not understand the risk they place themselves in, just for a few dimes, especially if the adapter’s use causes a vehicle or structure fire. Tesla and/or any owner of a HPWC cannot authorize a non-Tesla vehicle to charge by using an unapproved, unlisted Tesla/J1772 adapter; given the authority under which the HPWC’s are installed and approved for use. Also replacing the HPWC output connector with a J1772 connector is unapproved/unauthorized. Why? Because this electrical equipment is installed under the approval of the local building authorities and that requires all equipment to be Nationally Recognized Testing Lab (NRTL) listed, indicating it meets the electrical equipment standards (UL, etc.) and that the manufacture (Tesla) instructions for their equipment’s use must be followed. Tesla’s HPWC Installation Manual states: Warnings: “The High Power Wall Connector is designed only for charging a Tesla vehicle (excluding Tesla Roadster). Do not use it for any other purpose or with any other vehicle or object. Do not insert foreign objects into any part of the High Power Wall Connector.” Therefore, unless Tesla changes this instruction (to include the “Tesla Charging Only” signage) which is part of the legal authority… Read more »

That is a worthwhile point though of course unrelated to OP’s argument which related to supposed (“fancy”) patent violation.

Hold on a second here. “Violate Tesla patent” you say. Did not Musk say ALL Tesla patents are open for use?

If you look at the Tesla interface it’s actually J1772 pinout and signalling with a slight code modification to highlight a DC mode and higher current limit.

How Tesla responds to these devices will show the sincerity of their commitment.

Seems like people block out the important part. Tesla said “good faith”. I’m not sure an adapter that uses Tesla destination chargers counts as good faith (esp. without permission). I know Tesla installs a separate J1772 when locations expect non-Tesla cars to charge there. So not sure if this adapter meets Tesla’s intentions.

I guess we’ll see what happens when this becomes a regularity and a Tesla owner pulls up to a HPWC and gets surprised that a non-Tesla is charging there.

Typical BMW driver… LOL

And how is that typical?

The video shows the spot has a sign that says “Tesla charging only”. I think his comment is on the entitlement stereotype of BMW owners (parking however they want despite signage; in this case charging where they are not supposed to charge).

What’s the point? There are at least as many L2 chargers as Tesla HPWP chargers. Also how is he paying for the electricity, is he just stealing it? If this adapter was for the Superchargers and there was a way to pay for the electricity I would be all over this but otherwise what’s the point?

The point is that you now can get a really nice looking (and affordable) EVSE for your home, and use it with all your electric vehicles.

Don’t forget, the HPWC can handle up to 80A or so (close to 20 kW), and is much easier/more affordable to install than a level 3 station.

I wish the adapter was for sale, I’d get a HPWC in a heartbeat.

The chargers are actually on the car and I don’t know of any on board chargers that are rated for anything close to 20 kW. The Tesla 220V charger is only rated for 10kW. The BMW I3 is L2 charger is only rated for 7.2 kW. Like I said, what’s the point.

Teslas can be equipped with dual on-board chargers for 20kW of capacity.

I read about I guy that converted his Ford Focus to CHAdeMO. He was also going to install a second L2 charger but he was also going to need a second L2 plug.

The point is that there no cheaper or better looking 80A level 2 charging station on the market.

While personally, I can only charge up to 30A, having a 80A charging station would future-proof the installation, especially if it’s compatible with every EV on the market.

The more of these stations are on PlugShare, the better.

Ideally (as mentioned in my other response), I would like to see a HPWC to level 3 adapter, which would make this even more interesting.

^^^^ Yay, someone gets it! Not sure why it’s so hard for people to comprehend.

I’ve been holding off investing in an EVSE installation in my garage for this very reason, like everything else Tesla, their EVSE’s are simply BETTER.

This not only future proofs my garage for 40 (or maybe 80) amp, it also future proofs it for a Model 3.

The HPWC is a 20kw device.

The HPWC is little more than an extension cord. The charger on the car controls how much power goes to the car.

Texas FFE, the HPWC is much more than “an extension cord”. Like all EVSE, there are several requirements:

1) Immobilize the EV while connected, even if the cord is severed
2) Dead front (no power at the connector until engaged and the EV says it is ready)
3) Communicate circuit current limits to the EV (to enable one connector to be used for any rating, unlike the wall of plugs and outlets at Home Depot)
4) GFI with limited automated retires (US only, not in Europe)
5) Wait time before restart after a power outage to protect the grid (something like 2 minutes, it used to be random)
…and on and on for dozens of pages.

Big deal, it’s an extension cord with a computer chip. What doesn’t have computer chips nowadays. The HPWC takes 220V AC power from the wall outlet and sends 220V AC power to the car. Like I said, it’s an extension cord.

@don – You can buy a 25′ cable with a J1772 plug attached that is rated for 75A for $345 at

The cable that comes with the HPWC can be removed and replaced with a J1772 cable.

The link is misspelled. I should be manzanitmicro.

D’oh! It should be

Nice. There are a number of Tesla destination L2 chargers in N. GA and N. Carolina so this would make mountain trips in the Leaf a bit easier. But I would want to know that Tesla is totally OK with this before buying the adaptor. As others pointed out, don’t want to steal power.

Tesla is offering free HPWCs (including installation) to institutions interested in its destination charger program. From that perspective, it does not seem fair business to have other manufacturers benefit from Tesla’s investment.

Tesla’s patents are open, but business is business. This has nothing to do with patents but with cost of doing that business.

I guess I can’t really see how it’s not fair for other people to use Tesla destination chargers, since while Tesla does pay for the installation, they do not pay for the electrical usage. And by the flip side of this, Tesla’s come with J1772 to HPWC connectors, so by that token Teslas shouldn’t be allowed to use non-Tesla chargers.

Just seems like everyone was cool with Teslas having a walled garden of HPWC destination chargers, and using the normal J1772 public chargers and CHAdeMO stations.

“Just seems like everyone was cool with Teslas having a walled garden of HPWC destination chargers, and using the normal J1772 public chargers and CHAdeMO stations.”

While some Tesla owners may be small minded, narcissistic, or self serving I think the majority see Elon’s mission of doing whatever it takes to drive EV adoption and supporting it.

This clearly means NOT creating walled gardens when avoidable. Many like the idea of an adapter like this.

Personally, I’m ecstatic. I’ve been holding out on an installed EVSE for this very reason. I’d much prefer adapting a Tesla EVSE to J1772 than a J1772 EVSE to Tesla. It’s a much neater solution for all kinds of reasons.

We need DC fast charge adapters. There are already a lot L2 to CHADEMO conversions. We need adapters and conversations to take advantage of the Tesla Supercharger network. Jack Richard of EVTV said he wants to start working on conversations to Superchargers. Maybe we will start to see some progress on this front soon and the Superchargers will start opening up to non-Tesla vehicles.

Now THAT would be stealing. Supercharging is tied to the VIN/serial # of the Model S/X anyways, so just having an adapter won’t do the job anyways (and salvage vehicles aren’t cheap/worth the effort imo).

I think what would be more interesting is a HPWC to CHAdeMO (and CCS) to adapter, so vehicles such as the existing electric vehicles could benefit from the 20kW charging speed the HPWC offer.

Nobody is suggesting stealing electricity. Hopefully anybody that works out a Supercharger adapter will also work out with Tesla how we can pay for use of the chargers.

Yeah now that would definently be crossing a line. Using a charger that is up for public usage that is rolled into the overhead of the business offering it. Example being a lot of the hotels that have HPWC’s but no J1772 EVSE, using the adapter would be totally morally sound. But the SuperCharger network was built, installed, and the energy costs are covered by Tesla, so that’s shady.

Also the SuperChargers do have VIN tracking, hence the nasty-grams that some people were getting for over using the network.

We are not talking about any shady business here. There are already CHAdeMO conversions. The main difference between a CHAdeMO charger and a Supercharger, besides the power output, is the way payments are processed. CHAdeMO chargers are pay for service while Superchargers are pay for lifetime. Putting in a Supercharger conversion in a non-Tesla EV is going to cost several thousand dollars. Anybody that is going to lay down that kind of money would have no need or desire to steal electricity. Tesla has said they want to share their technology. Allowing conversions that can use the Superchargers would be a great way for Tesla to promote electric vehicle adoption plus it would help Tesla pay for their charging infrastructure.

“There are already a lot L2 to CHADEMO conversions…”

There are? Where? I want one!

Since the sign clearly states “Tesla charging only” this is stealing. He should have tested it at a friend’s house or with Tesla’s permission, or at least slide a dollar under the front door of the store.

The adapter looks well built though and would be nice if staying at one of those B&B’s that are getting HPWC installed.

The B&B’s also install Clipper Creek J1772 units that are provided by Tesla along with money towards the installation. Now if someone makes a CHAdeMO to CCS adapter (hint, hint, BMW/VW/GM) that would really increase the value proposition 🙂

That looks like the Salt Lake City location, simply because it’s been in the news a bit (anti-Tesla dealership-protectionism nonsense).

+1 for ingenuity, -100 for not working with the owner of the outlet, quite obviously. I think there’s probably a market for destination charging like hotels, AirBnB, etc., but many of those places got the Tesla HPWC for free, and should be reasonably concerned that this uncertified proof-of-concept hardware is a void of the service warranty of the HPWC. Next step is to get Tesla Motors to certify your adapter, otherwise, this will be relegated to a successful solution to those ignorant of the risks.
Possible risks include shorting out the device, starting a fire, damaging the vehicle, and damaging the HPWC.

HPWC’s are not metered, and my guess is that this kind of hardware, if successful, is going to lead to metered HPWC’s to protect Tesla’s investment.

No it wouldn’t be “swell” as the author of the blog post says. Tesla gives these away to hotels, restaurants, and other destinations and pays towards installation too, FOR MARKETING PURPOSES. It’s so people see Teslas charging there and get interested in the car. If this use by other EVs becomes more prevalent, I would expect Tesla could find better things to spend its marketing budget on and Tesla owners won’t be seeing more of these amenities.

A rising tide raises all ships. I know of a hotel that has about a half dozen Tesla chargers and only one L2 charger. If I attempted to spend the night at that hotel and the one L2 charger I needed was in use I would want to use one of the Tesla chargers. The hotel pays for the electricity, not Tesla. Any hotel guest that can use those chargers should be allowed to use them.

But the chargers were donated by Tesla (likely including the J1772 one). He’s saying if people abuse it (and Tesla owners complain) Tesla will likely find better use of their marketing dollars and stop expanding the network or place additional restrictions. While non-Tesla owners can brush that off, ultimately it is the Tesla owners that are hurt.

That hotel likely used up all of the low hanging fruits in terms of available capacity for EV charging. 12 HPWC’s is more than a 1000 amp panel at 208V. What are the chances that the hotel would be able to expand with more J1772 ports once they realize that the majority of plug-in vehicles on the road aren’t Tesla? My guess is that Tesla Destination Charging hosts don’t realize they are needlessly blocking out non-Tesla cars by going with Tesla’s EVSEs instead of generic EVSEs. The free EVSE (~$800) is peanuts compared to the overall cost of the project.

Tesla also provides $1500 per connector to go towards installation and an optional J1772 EVSE per two HPWC installed.

They aren’t simply donating only the HPWC.

No, not quite.

Tesla’s HPWC running on 208 volts is a relatively low power factor (86.6%) load running 1 or 2 at a time; whereas 12 of them running equal 80 amp loads (12 teslas each with dual chargers – seeing as they are the most popular configuration this is a most common occurence) are actually 100% powerfactor and the above load would be 554 2/3 amps.

Before someone says ‘huh?’ what is going on is the next HPWC down the line fully complements the leading or lagging current of the HPWC to the right or left of it. So the end result is that it appears to the power line as running a few big light bulbs.

Since I don’t have the legal agreement before me of the Bed & Breakfast and Tesla Motors, INC, they may not have to run full power (and if the case where each HWPC is running on 208, it is by definition 16.64kw and not 20 anyway).

If they set up each HPWC to be 40 amps maximum, then quite obviously that would halve the maximum loading.

40 isn’t so bad. Its when the business owner decides to give each car 15 amps at under 200 volts (i.e., under 3 kw/vehicle) like they do at the new, trendy “I-SQUARE” faciltiy in Irondequoit, NY (subburb of Rochester), that it tends to frustrate even those of us with wimpy chargers in our cars made even wimpier here.

There is quite a discussion on TMC about this. HPWCs being promotional items for Tesla’s at destination locations / hotels. Not sure Tesla travels will appreciate pulling up to HPWCs where J1772 cars are using it.

Some safety considerations as well as some of the experienced engineers have pointed out with his physical design.
TMC post above: “…hire an attorney to pursue me on this issue. I’m using my real name [Noel Ingle Park City, UT LEAF owner] on the post. Should have no trouble finding me.”

Tesla Only sign clearly shown in video as well:

I think Tesla Motors could care less. My life is in danger from radical fundamentalist Tesla fanboys. They’re chasing me down the street with their trophy wives tennis rackets.

My question is if Tesla builds the charging station but you the building owner are paying for the power. Then I see nothing wrong with using this. Not to mention Tesla really is the only one building high powered level 2 charging stations.

Not so, Clipper Creek builds good quality high amp level 2 charging stations. This is what Sun Country Highway uses in Canada and they’re starting to install them in the US.

unfortunately the CC Chargers are not networked or controllable in a useful manner so are good for personal ownership but not really great for V1G/V2G or network applications.

“Good news everyone!”

ClipperCreek now offers network-enabled charging stations (using eMotorWerks’ JuiceNet):

Hopefully the rest of the line will adopt the tech as well.

Tesla has been talking for years about letting other manufacturers use the Tesla chargers but nobody has taken Tesla up on their offer. Tesla must have a business model that will allow conversions to use the Tesla chargers. Jack Richard talks about capturing Supercharger CAN codes. If the Tesla Superchargers poll for VIN when charging then the conversion chargers could provide VIN related to an account set up with Tesla. If Tesla allowed you to pay $2,500 to use their Superchargers for life of your Leaf, I3, whatever would you pay it?

Where can we buy it?

Not available yet but Jack Richard hosts

I assumed you were talking about Supercharger conversions. I don’t know where you can find the HPWP adapter.

Maybe the adapter can indeed be used successfully with the aforementioned vehicles…but unless the respective manufacturers okay it, I imagine doing so immediately voids the warranty on the car.

Just because you add an aftermarket mod to your car that doesn’t mean your warranty will be void. There is actually a law that says that a manufacturer can not void the warranty unless the manufacturer can prove the aftermarket device caused the failure.

If this is at all safe or fine with Tesla, why do they incur the added expense of supplying a ClipperCreek to the destination charging locations and not just put an adaptor or J1772 on the end of the Tesla charging station?

I say people who are using the Tesla station are screwing things up for Tesla owners and the rest of us.

Just my opinion.

Back in 2011 the Nissan salesman told me I could only charge my Leaf with their Aerovironment EVSE or it would void my warranty too.

Good point, Alan.
I have seen a few of these Destination chargers now and every time I’ve seen them I’ve noticed that there’s also a Clipper Creek or two. So, it seems Tesla is using these for the J1772 portion. Pretty generous! Why would we ruin a good program by mis-using the Tesla station?? Also, I see no need for the Clipper Creeks to be networked in these cases? Are the Tesla stations?

For Tesla destination chargers Tesla doesn’t give the site a free Clipper Creek charger, those are purchased by the property owner ( I know this from experience, been through the process of getting a destination charger, and I’ve seen my fair share of locations that only have a HPWC).

The policy is that for every two HPWC installed, you get one optional free Clipper Creek charger. Don’t know what happens though if you install only a single HPWC.

I’ve spoken to a couple different inns/b&b owners who have one of each, both were given to them by Tesla.
Perhaps it’s not a hard and fast rule, however.
If it were up to the property owner I doubt they’d all be going with Clipper Creek as the additional. But Clipper Creek makes the pole that Tesla is using; I’ve seen a number of photos and it’s clearly clipper creek’s branding, so perhaps they strongly suggest or the pole is only compatible with clipper creek?

Theft, pure and simple.

I don’t see this as being a big deal, since the business owner pays the electric bill, and it frees up an otherwise unavailable 32 amp docking station for the next guy.

What WOULD cause a RISE out of Tesla, is for someone to come out with a gadget to spoof the stationary supercharger stall so that it turns on the DC for a non-tesla vehicle. Here Tesla *IS* paying the electric bill, and would definitely be considered ‘Theft Of Service’ if they were caught doing it.

They are using Tesla’s proprietary design of the charger and using a charger that is usually donated by Tesla for destination charging for Model S/X owners.

Besides that? not much

The HPWC is not a Supercharger, its a 19.2kW EVSE that uses standard J1772 signaling, which is why the Tesla J1772 adaptor is a simple convertor and not the monstrosity that is the Chademo adaptor.

Per the terms of the Destination Charging program, Tesla provides the HPWC while the business owner pays for the electricity. That being the case, I think it would be up to the business owner if this is OK or not. I would assume, in most cases, as long as the person charging is a customer, the business owner would not complain.