Tesla Blocks Gas Car Access To Superchargers With Trick Device

JAN 15 2019 BY MARK KANE 50

There is a physical solution, but it’s the last that should be considered.

A new old-school solution to prevent ICEing (blocking charging spots by internal combustion engine vehicles) has appeared in the news recently.

As you can see above, at one of the Tesla Supercharging stations in China, access to the parking spot at the charger is guarded by an iron bar. Only Tesla drivers, equipped with popular WeChat app, can scan the QR Code and get access to park and charge. This way no other car can simply park and block the station.

We are not sure whether it’s Tesla’s idea (as some sources say) or rather the owner of the garage, which seems to be more likely.

Is it a good solution? Well, we are not fans of such methods. There are alternatives in the form of no parking for unauthorized cars, combined with the ability to tow the car or get a ticket from the police. All forces should be put on-board to develop a simple formula/rule to deal with ICEing globally. If that doesn’t work, then maybe stations owners can spend more money on physical barriers. Lastly, at this site now, EV drivers will need to deal with some apps, which are less convenient.

Source: Electrek, xautoworld.com

Categories: Charging, Tesla

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50 Comments on "Tesla Blocks Gas Car Access To Superchargers With Trick Device"

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QR Code is vulnerable to grafiti, they should have used wifi and authenticate wirelessly.

In the UK we already have the ANPR database of all the different vehicles and their emissions/tax bands, so by simply driving into central london, the cameras pick you up and determine your type of vehicle, if it’s EV or not, and so on. This is part of the low emission vehicle exemption to various taxes in the city.

Since the UK already has a database of electric vehicles, these same cameras could simply be installed in the EV bays. Any non-EV parked in those bays would be automatically billed a hefty fine. As for people who park there in an EV but don’t charge, a solution could easily be drafted that penalises them, too. For any Americans reading this, in the EU cars must have both front AND rear plates, so the camera idea would work if they park forward or backwards in the space.

The barrier idea isn’t terrible either, but it could work in combination with the ANPR/camera idea to operate far more smoothly than a silly QR code which is of course useless if your phone battery died or you don’t have a smartphone.

Unfortunately, many paranoid Americans would raise bloody hell if cameras were tracking their vehicles. Because of this paranoia, many wonderful features implemented by more progressive countries to make daily life more convenient can’t be implemented in the U.S.

You mean something like the cameras at every U.S. toll plaza that take a photo of you and your license plate?

Every time I go to the supermarket I frequent, I constantly see people parked in handicap spots without proper plates/placards…If that isn’t bad enough, there are known doctors who will issues plates to anyone who pays a fee but that’s another topic…Some feel rules were made to be broken and often these people do not stay parked long enough receive a ticket or be towed…

In addition, the scofflaws that are a problem here, will not be deterred by this weak solution. All they have to do is move the white cones and park between the barriers, effectively blocking two Teslas from charging. People that regularly refuse t follow rules won’t have problem with this at all.

Yeah, I was thinking those barriers are too small. They should run across most of the width of the stall to prevent exactly the antisocial tactic you describe.

I do think that using the tire flattening barriers at parking lot exits would be very effective. 🙂

I was Tesla-ed at a CCS charger in Columbus, OH. It was parked in an EV only spot with a CCS charger it couldn’t at. But it was conveniently located at the front of the store.

I get more “iced” by Tesla than ICE cars. In fact, I’ve been ICED 2 times, but Tesla’d out of CCS dozen times.

You should shame these Tesla owners by posting pics of the offending Tesla vehicles with their license plates visible on social media and perhaps on a dedicated thread at Tesla Motors Club.

You Californian’s seem to be a very tolerant bunch. In NYC, people who park like jerks or block other cars in often return to find their cars now have what is colloquially referred to as “NYC pinstriping.”

Usually (always?) the other charger is taken by some free charging Leaf/i3/Maven Bolt tapered to hell, so my anger is distributed.

I see lots of photos of Tesla blocking CCS, yet they still occur. It’s wasted effort. A guy came back while I was still there, but he wasn’t apologetic at all, so I gave him a piece of my mind. He’ll probably still do it, though.

A while ago I saw an ICE parked at a charger. I presume another EV owner before me noticed that the charger was ICED and left a nice big loogie on the driver’s window. Apparently, the same or different person tried to spit on the driver’s door handle, but alas their aim was off and that loogie missed its mark by a few inches. While crude, I wonder if this act if aggression (with no lasting physical damage) towards the ICEing car did indeed deter its owner from ICEing an EV charger again.

https://static01.nyt.com/images/2012/01/19/nyregion/JPSTICKER/JPSTICKER-jumbo.jpg In NYC, when a car isn’t moved for alternate-side street cleaning, it very rarely if ever gets towed and gets a parking ticket only if a parking enforcement agent drives by. Many times, the approximately $40 ticket is not that much more than a parking garage, especially if you’re going to be gone for the rest of the day. Some people play the odds of not getting a parking ticket verses paying exorbitant parking garage rates. To deter cars from parking during street sweeper hours, the NYC Dept. of Sanitation came up with the “Sticker of Shame.” The street-sweeper driver had a stack of 8” by 10” bright yellow stickers that he applied to the rear-door window of offending cars that said: “THIS VEHICLE VIOLATES NYC PARKING REGULATIONS. As A Result This Street Could Not Be Properly Cleaned. A CLEANER NEW YORK IS UP TO YOU.” The sticker was in effect a scarlet letter. About 400 or so a day we’re applied to cars. The Sanitation Dept made sure it was VERY DIFFICULT and time consuming to remove. You couldn’t just easily peel off the sticker as the glue was VERY STRONG and would easily rip before peeling. Only… Read more »

EV charging stall etiquette is something for which our society hasn’t yet come to a consensus. Until it does, leave a note on the offending car explaining what the rules of charging etiquette ought to be. Preferably a polite (if firm) note. As they say: “You catch more flies with honey than vinegar.”

I see Evannex has a nicely written “Courtesy Notice”. We EV advocates could copy the text but get the slips printed and cut apart at a print shop; Evannex’s $13 fee for such a package seems rather inflated!


“Keying” a car or otherwise vandalizing it may not convey the message you want, as well as risking violence or criminal charges if you’re caught at it. In fact, I’d argue that it’s counter-productive. It risks causing a public perception of EV drivers as at least jerks, if not criminals.

I got blocked on a CCS by a leaf that was not charging at all. It is not particular to a particular car. It is just stupid entitled people who think EV parking means entitlement. There were plenty of L2 charging spots to take, but they took the CCS. It had stupid written all over it.

Why? What did you write it with?

And THAT is the problem with these urban charging stations. They should be located as far from the front door as possible, then only people that really need to charge will actually park there. I recently went to a local Kohl’s and they had an empty charging spot right next to the front door with free complimentary charging, complete with a “Kohl’s cares” sign. I could have parked there and got a few free miles, but I drive a Bolt and certainly didn’t need to, so I parked in a regular spot. So did a conscientious VW eGolf driver. When I got out of the store, a BMW i3 was in the spot and hooked up to it. Did he need the charge, or just didn’t want to walk? Who knows. I do know though if the charging station was located as far as possible form the door, then we would know.

I do realize though, that putting the charger at the front is likely often the cheapest option for the store, or whoever is footing the bill. Running power long distances under ground gets expensive. I’m not sure what exactly the solution here is.

Not saying that you’re wrong, logically and objectively, but the store owner isn’t going to want to pay to install an EV charging stall as far as possible away from his store. No, he’s going to want it right in front of his store, because he’s paying for the installation in order to attract more customers to his store.

I agree that a better spot for charging is anywhere other than the front of a lot. Unless on a road trip you shouldn’t have to use it, and then wouldn’t you rather fast charge?

IMO charging at retail locations is stupid and will phase out in favor of a model closer to that of gas stations with true fast charge capabilities. Coffee shops or restaurants along major travel routes, however, I can see that being a reasonable spot to charge. Still shouldn’t be the best spots.

I agree that it would be nice to have EV charging placed at the back of the parking lot. Unfortunately, many times high powered electricity is often near the store. An expensive conduit would have to be placed underground in order to move the charging station to the back.

The problem with these parking spots is that in many cases it just say “ev only”. It should be made clear that they are for ev charging not ev parking.

I absolutely agree that better signage is needed. Something that makes it very clear, such as “FOR EV CHARGING ONLY. PLEASE MOVE CAR AFTER CHARGING”

There is a current argument over on the IEVs forum about charging etiquette and Tesla Destination Chargers. Those really need clear signage, such as “PROPERTY OF BATES HOTEL — FOR CHARGING OF EVS ONLY — ALL GUESTS’ EVS ARE WELCOME”

That would make it clear that (a) The charger belongs to the property owner, not to Tesla, and (b) the Destination Charger is not exclusively for charging Tesla cars, even if one of the chargers has a Tesla logo on it.

Of course, the property owner has the right to set rules on who can or can’t use the charger, so they should dictate their own sign. The problem is that most Tesla Destination Chargers, or at least ones which have photos posted to the Internet, don’t clearly indicate who can or can’t use the chargers. In many cases there’s no signage at all.

Easier deterrent, license plate capture and billing of vehicles that block the space. I mean they already charge people for overstaying in the spot while charging, might as well make a buck off people being jerks.

No, people have been parking illegally for a while now (“centurion, sorry you cannot park your chariot here”), nor can you expect security to be that car knowledgeable.

The solution is simple. If you are parked there and not charging, you get towed. If you are parked there and connected, you get some grace, but not several hours worth.

Something about having to go retrieve your car really causes people to think.

That ‘barrier’ appears to be only 12″ tall or so. A jacked-up truck could clear that. Or just run over it with the tires.

Yeah, pretty sure that dinky little bar wouldn’t fair to well getting knocked by the diff housing on a pickup truck.

Yeah, it definitely needs to be a larger barrier, both higher and wider. Especially if the “hobby” of knuckle-dragging coal-rollers using their pickups to deliberately block Tesla Supercharger stalls keeps spreading.

Spikes work wonders.

Not many brodozers in China.

Yeah, good luck against brodozers, lol.

This is Not a Good Idea ! When all those ICEHOLE Idiots Blocked the Tesla chargers the police should have been called to charge the ICEHOLE Idiots with trespassing , tow their ICE Cars away, Then Fine & Jail the ICEHOLE IDIOTS for a day , to cool their Heels . I Believe , they would then get the Message and perhaps put an STOP to this Ridiculous Brain Dead Nonsensical Behavior .

Or just have the cops show up, ask them to leave, and give them a warning. Going full nuke on them will just reinforce their anti-EV bias.

“reinforce their anti-EV bias.”
LOL…we are way past that point…

That’s about as realistic as thinking a KKK member will suddenly stop being a bigot if you politely explain to him that people of color are human beings, too.

Police in the U.S. generally won’t respond to parking infractions on private property. Security guards hired by the property owner seem to be the only enforcers, but they have no real power other than calling a towing company. However, it can take hours for a tow truck to arrive where I live, so few cars parked where they shouldn’t be are towed.

Also, property owners don’t want to piss off customers, so written warnings are usually issued which do nothing to fix the problem.

Yup. If it’s just a sign posted by the property owner, it has no force of law. I suppose in the case in question (not the one in this article), the police might have arrested the coal-rollers for disturbing the peace, and might have had their vehicles towed if the property owners said they were trespassing. But unless there is an actual State law or municipal ordinance against parking a non-EV in an EV charging stall, then I think that’s gonna be pretty far down on the average policeman’s list of priorities, even if they could come up with some legal justification for impounding the vehicles.

I’m rather fuzzy on the subject, but I think the property owner could actually have an easier time getting vehicles towed off his property, but then he’d have to pay for the tow, wouldn’t he?

You “ICEHOLE” – So where is “GET JOHNNY DANGEROUSLY !!!” ?? hehe. The movie where all the crooks mangled the cussing so bad it got a better movie rating!

JOHNNY DANGEROUSLY (to child caught shoplifting): Don’t forget, crime doesn’t pay.

Johnny, dressed in his tux, climbs into his fancy limousine.

JOHNNY (looking into camera): Well, it paid a little!

This sounds like a problem that mostly exists in the minds of EV owners. I’ve only ever seen an “EV only” parking spot at the airport in Boston, and they were smart enough to not give it the choicest spot, which helps prevent this. Do realize that right now EVs are still a rich persons game. Giving the choicest parking spots to those with the most money is pretty obnoxious on the rest of society. I can’t fault people for lashing out against it on occasion by “ICIng” since they are essentially protesting the current state of extra privilege and subsidization of the rich that is being fueled by Western governments right now when it comes to electric cars. I have said it before and I’ll say it again: If you want EVs to be adopted by the masses, you need to make them as cheap and easy to use as possible and do our collective best to avoid making them obnoxious right now while that is not the case. Giving the spots right next to the entrance to EVs just rubs everyone else’s noses in the fact that certain people with the wealth and privilege to own such things… Read more »

Cool story. I’ve been driving plug-ins exclusively for nearly seven years now. Many of the charging stations I frequent are in fact located at the back of the parking lot, and are not the “choicest” spot, and yet I’ve seen them iced dozens of times over the years. I suppose the Mitsubishi i-MiEV I was driving was the ultimate symbol of elitism and privilege, and I simply got what I deserved. Being ignorant, or an @$$hole on purpose, by icing and potentially causing a young family to be stranded (has happened to me!) to prove some ridiculous point is, once again…. to come full circle here…. a cool story.

“If you want EVs to be adopted by the masses, you need to make them as cheap and easy to use as possible…”

Outside China, startups which have tried to make and sell EV passenger cars “as cheap as possible” have all gone out of business. Every one of them, from Aptera to CODA to Th!nk to ZENN.

But hey, if you think you can do better, then by all means create your own EV startup and show us how it’s possible to stay in business selling EVs at a loss. 🙄

Tesla sells to a higher priced market, not because of snobbery or a sense of entitlement, but because that’s the only way that a dedicated EV maker can make enough money to stay in business. And until the costs for EV powertrains (including the battery pack) come down significantly, that is the only way for an EV startup to have a successful business.

“There is a physical solution, but it’s the last that should be considered.”

Why is a simple and effective way to prevent ICEing of EV charging stalls the last solution which would be considered?

I certainly would love to see this become standard! With an optional tire slasher to be deployed to fight those knuckle-dragging coal rollers who deliberately block Tesla superchargers with their pickups because they think it’s fun. 😉

Move the cone and block 2 spots

This is China. I’m sure they are not trying to solve for Trucks intentionally blocking spaces vs. other cars just taking the spaces because they are convenient to park in, and don’t care about people trying to charge.

The fact that it is WeChat and not the Tesla app tells you that this is a local chinese solution.

The barriers don’t work with high ground clearance trucks in the USA.

If people are parking on purpose to block spots, this won’t stop them. They can just part across the ends of two spots with these barriers in place, or park between them. You’re going to have to keep making the barriers bigger until they prevent any and all work-arounds. Mean people are pretty creative, unfortunately.

All sites have to do is is enforce the rules/laws that are in place. Tow at 5x the normal cost at owners expense.

Couldn’t they just move the white cones and park between the iron bars?