Can You Charge a Chevy Bolt at A Tesla Station

Can You Charge A Chevy Bolt At A Tesla Station?

No, you cannot. However, a J-1772 level 2 charger can fit in a Bolt or a Tesla, allowing both EVs to use the same J-1772 charging infrastructure. And more recently, Tesla fitted select stations with adapters for other brand EVs, including Chevy Bolt, and drivers have reported using them successfully.

Tesla superchargers and destination chargers use a Tesla-specific high-power connector that normally won’t charge a Chevy Bolt.

If you’re new to using chargers on the road (perhaps you’ve not ventured beyond your Bolt range), there are a lot of discussions you’re probably not aware of about charging with Tesla stations. In the last decade, non-Tesla EV owners have been on the lookout for Tesla’s move to allow other brands to use their charging network.

The general knowledge used to be that, as a Bolt owner, you can’t DC charge from a Tesla station using any adapter since DC charging the Bolt will only work at CCS stations. And the J1772 adaptor works for “Tesla Destination” AC level 2 charges only that you can find at hotels or restaurants.

But many things have changed in recent months, from the charging options update on the Tesla app to the Magic Dock to allow for supercharging Bolt EVs. In this article, I’ve attempted to break down the idea of charging a Chevy Bolt at a Tesla station, the things that are possible now, and those that aren’t.

First, let’s understand what Bolt allows with its EV charging specifications from other brands’ stations.

What plug does the Chevy Bolt use?

The Chevy Bolt has three types of chargers available for the car: the Level 1 charger, which you can plug into a typical household outlet; the Level 2 charger, which is meant for your garage if you have a full electric vehicle; and the Level 3 charger for traveling purposes.

Until recently, Tesla Superchargers were explicitly set up for Teslas only, while the Tesla destination chargers are level 2 AC chargers using standard protocol for charger-to-car communication. So, the Chevy Bolt can use one of those with a third-party connection adapter like this $110 Lectron-Tesla to J1772 Adapter.

Does Tesla Supercharging Work for Chevy Bolt?

Superchargers were previously only designed for Tesla vehicles. However, earlier this year, a new tab was created in the Tesla app (version 4.18.0 or higher) called “Charge your Non-Tesla,” which activates the Magic Dock at Tesla charging stations, allowing you to pull out the charger with the adapter to charge your non-Tesla EVs, including Bolt. It costs 49 cents for 1 kWh of power.

How to Charge a Chevy Bolt EV With a Tesla Supercharger

Tesla has retrofitted select stations with a “Magic Dock,” a CCS1 adapter placed on top of Tesla’s NACS plug that enables non-Tesla EVs to charge at a maximum rate of 250 kW.

Here’s how you can use a supercharger for your Bolt EV:

Step 1: Download the Tesla app and create an account.

Step 2: Select “Charge Your Non-Tesla” and find a nearby Supercharger site. Remember, the Chevy Bolt has its charger port on the front driver’s side compared to the rare driver’s side location of the Tesla.

So you have to park in a way that allows the cord to reach the Bolt’s charger port. This would mean taking up two slots in the charging park space.

Step 3: Add a payment method, select a stall, unlock the adapter, and plug in your car. Every Supercharger post has a label with a unique identifier.

For example, if you are taking the cable from post 3C, select post 3C in the Tesla app to begin charging.

Step 4: Tap “Start Charging.”

Step 5: Select “Stop Charging” to complete your session.

Alternatives for Charging Chevy Bolt EVs

Charging a Chevy Bolt at a Tesla station can be challenging because Tesla uses its proprietary charging network, the Tesla Supercharger network, specifically designed for Tesla vehicles.

However, if you can’t access a dedicated charging station, here are the best options I recommend you consider:

  1. Public Charging Stations: Look for public charging stations that offer universal charging options, such as CHAdeMO or CCS connectors. These charging stations are compatible with various EV models, including the Chevy Bolt.

You can use mobile apps like PlugShare, ChargePoint, or Google Maps to locate these charging stations near you.

  1. Non-Tesla DC Fast Charging Stations: Some third-party charging networks provide DC fast charging stations compatible with the Chevy Bolt. EVGo and Electrify America, for example. You can use mobile apps or websites to find the nearest compatible charging stations.
  1. Level 2 Charging: If fast charging options are unavailable, consider Level 2 charging stations.

These are slower than DC fast chargers but still provide a decent charging speed. Level 2 charging stations typically use a J1772 connector compatible with the Chevy Bolt. Many public parking lots, shopping centers, or workplaces offer Level 2 charging options.

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