From frost quakes to Chicago Public Schools closing, everybody across the city is feeling the effects of Chicago’s extreme weather over the last week. For Tesla drivers, however, things are getting particularly tough.
According to the National Weather Service, Chicago spent over 35 hours in subzero temperatures at the start of this week. Such frosty conditions are beyond uncomfortable for many of us doing all we can to stay warm but for Tesla owners, the temperatures are either sapping batteries at extraordinary rates or rendering them useless altogether.
The consequence has been a pile-up at public electric vehicle charging stations across Chicagoland with many becoming Tesla graveyards over the past couple of days.
Tesla owners have sat in long lines at Supercharger stations and then experienced charge times of more than double their usual expected duration.
For others, the results have been even worse with car batteries dying altogether and the vehicles consequently becoming immobile and having to be towed or abandoned.
Tesla has yet to comment publically on the issues though a Cold Weather Best Practices page can be found on the Tesla website with advice for those driving in frigid conditions.
Here Tesla writes that it recommends “using Trip Planner to navigate to a charging location for at least 30-45 minutes before arrival to ensure optimal Battery temperature and charging conditions. If the drive to the charging location is less than 30-45 minutes, consider preconditioning the Battery before driving.”
“By using Trip Planner to navigate to a Tesla charging location, Model 3 pre-heats the high voltage Battery to ensure when you arrive at the charger, the temperature of the Battery is optimal and ready to charge. This reduces the amount of time it takes to charge” it continues.
Tesla also writes that for vehicles equipped with a heat pump the thermal system may produce odorless steam from the front of your vehicles while charging at a Supercharger in cold temperatures. “This is normal and not a cause for concern” they assure.
[Featured image from Shutterstock]