Tesla drivers with home solar panels and a Powerwall charger now have a new option to exclusively charge up their electric vehicle with excess solar energy.
The automaker began rolling out the setting in May, under a rather idyllic name: “Drive on Sunshine.” The feature is now more straightforwardly dubbed “Charge on Solar”. it’s available to Tesla owners in the U.S. and Canada with newer vehicles which lanuched in 2021 and onward.
To initiative this new setting, simply open your Tesla app and search for "Charge on Solar" to get started. Go through the setup process and choose a few limits on when and how much power the charging system takes. You'll see a slider with a sun icon that you can drag to customize the charging limits.
For instance, you can charge your vehicle to 40% using the grid, and then it'll stop. When your system has extra solar power during a sunny day, it'll use solar charging from 40% to 90%.
According to Tesla, your vehicle will adjust charge power nearly every 10 seconds to match the system. That way, home energy consumption will align with any leftover solar power, which should prevent the vehicle from pulling power from the grid throughout the day.
The rise of EV and the ubiquity of solar panels have prompted countless dreamers to fancy that the two technologies will converge. Tesla isn't the first company to offer a system that charges EVs with spare power, but the deep integration within its app makes it easy for drivers.