Portable solar panels are easy to use. Therefore, many travelers bring their solar panel system with them when travelling to remote areas.
You can instantly build your solar system with a few solar panels lying on the ground or placed on your RV under direct sunlight.
However, the charge generated by a solar panel would not be sufficient to charge Tesla batteries fully.
It requires more power than what usually the portable solar panel can produce.
Within this article, I will talk about the various aspects of the portable solar panel and how you can use them to charge your Tesla car.
Remember that you must understand how solar panel works and the amount of charge each solar panel would generate in bright sunlight.
This would help you to calculate the exact requirement of the portable solar panel system.
Can I charge a tesla with portable solar panels?
Technically charging a Tesla car with the Portable solar panel is possible. However, the number of solar panels required to charge the panel will be varied. The Tesla car has a huge battery pack, and it requires a good power source to fill the batteries rapidly. The low voltage power supplier would take 8 to 10 days to charge the Tesla.
With a 5kW solar panel, you will be able to charge the Tesla P100 battery pack in 20 hours at the optimal sunlight hitting the panel.
Realistically, if we consider the amount of sunlight you will be to capture in a day, it would take you around 3 to 4 days of direct sunlight to charge the tesla car.
Considering the continuous, sunlight in any location is impossible, so practically your Tesla batteries would take 10 days or more to charge the full battery pack.
The low-end portable solar panel is not efficient, they may help you charge home appliances or the cell phone. But to charge the large battery pack it would take days.
Sometimes it becomes an impractical solution to charge the Tesla with the portable solar panel.
However, if you have to set up multiple solar panels on your home rooftop or in the backyard on the shed, the amount of energy it generates may help you gain some charging percentage during day time.
Do not expect that your Tesla batteries would be charged fully in one day. Being optimistic about the thing is a good thing, but optimism would not help you get the job done in the mathematical world.
Calculating the amount of power each solar panel can generate would help you decide how many portable solar panels you would require to charge a single battery pack.
How many portable solar panels does it take to charge a Tesla?
We will take the example of the portable solar panel that produces approximately 1 kWh a day of AC electricity. If you use this system to charge the Tesla car batteries, you would require astounding 75 portable solar panels kept under direct sunlight to power the Tesla Model S at its full capacity.
You might need a solar firm to set up the 75 portable solar panels to charge one Tesla car every day.
Watch this video tutorial to charge the Tesla batteries using the Portable Solar Panel.
How to setup portable solar panels for Tesla?
Setting a portable solar panel to charge Tesla is quite easy. You would require a tesla charging grid directly connected to the solar panel system’s output connection. You can also use the third party power converter to convert the direct current generated from the portable solar panel to AC output.
Here is the step by step guide to setup your portable solar panels for Tesla
1) In the first step, you have to set up the portable solar panel near the Tesla. If you are charging your car at home, placing the solar panel on the rooftop or the car shed would produce a sufficient charge for the batteries.
Find the place which comes under direct sunlight. The idea is to capture as many solar rays as on the solar panel.
2) Once you decide the place, assemble your portable solar panel in the home. For people who are using the portable solar panel during the travel, you can set your solar panel around the car facing the panel to the sun.
Use the portable power converter to convert the direct current before connecting the power jack to the solar output.
3) Now you are done with the setup. Your portable solar panel will start generating electricity, and you will be able to track the charging process using your Tesla App.
Portable solar panels are known for the low power production device, so do not expect facilities such as fast-charging stations.
The capacity of the portable solar would decide how much energy the panel would produce per hour. 2-3 solar panels would give you the needed charge during the day and help you keep your Tesla alive for several days without taking it to the nearby charging station.
Can you use multiple portable panels to charge the tesla?
Multiple solar panel systems are interconnecting with each other multiplying the electricity generation capacity. The solar panel is designed for future expansion. You can easily connect as many solar panels as you want to increase the power supply. You get the higher output to speed up the Tesla car charging process.
Depending on your region’s location, the amount of solar rays that your city receives may defer. For example, in the USA, the average daylight is 7 hours per day.
On sunny days, you get 7 hours of charging in a single day.
Suppose we calculate each solar panel’s capacity. In that case, you will get to know that the power generated through each solar panel is negligible you would require the setup of up to 75 solar panels in rows connected to power your Tesla car from 0% to 100% capacity.
Also, there are another aspect of the power generation such as the angle of the solar panel, cleaning the panel every few days, and many other things that may cause the problem to the portable solar panel need to take care to keep your solar panel system in the full performance mode.
So it is not a practical solution to use the 75 solar panels to charge your Tesla car when you are on holiday.
It would be best if you had a better solution to get your Tesla charge using solar energy. A portable solar panel to charge tesla would work in the home base solar panel system.
Your rooftop setup would keep generating solar energy throughout the day, and when you come back home, you can keep your car on charging mode using the power stored in the battery pack.
These batteries would have filled the energy during the day, which now powering your Tesla car.
When you wake up in the morning, you have your battery charge at a sufficient level without needing to use your power grid.
This way, you will use renewable energy to power your home and Tesla Car.
What is the alternative option to charge a Tesla with a portable charger?
The most common way of charging the Tesla car is using the home-based charging station. Set up your solar panel system on the roof and let it generate power throughout the day and store the energy into the backup battery pack.
You can use the batteries to charge your Tesla car at night. You do not have to visit the nearby charging station or wait in the queue at a public charging station using the home base power station.
The home base solar power station saves your time, and you will be able to your tesla car at its optimum level without spending time at the public charging station.
For people who use the car for travelling to the job, the home-based power system would allow them to save time.
It will give you a real electric car experience and save a good amount of money you may pay to the electricity board.
Using a home base station would also save on electricity bills because your home applies would be powered by the backup battery pack.
When you away from home, the solar panel keeps pumping the energy into the batteries. Use Tesla Wall connector to charge your batteries.
Hope the above guide on the portable solar panel to charge tesla car would have helped you understand the dynamic behind setting the clean energy setup.
Tesla is working on the home base solar power station with an improved battery pack. However, the existing setup is also working as usual.
Still, the future solar panel would make the product more efficient, and you will be able to charge your car at the optimum capacity in a single night.
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Eng. Matthew Joseph Nandirio is the Founder of walkingsolar.
After graduating from the University of Houston in 2002, matt started working as a Solar Electrical Engineer for several multi-national solar energy companies.
He has a wide range of experiences including solar system requirement analysis, planning, maintaining, debugging and even solar device development through research.
He now shares his 20 years of expertise through his articles on the walkingsolar website.
Further, he is also the author of two books on Solar Technology, “Solar Power for Villages” and “DIY Solar System for Dummies”.