Charging an EV: How Much Electricity Does It Take to Charge a Tesla?

by Jun 21, 2023Electric cars0 comments

Understanding the Cost of Charging an EV in Canada: How Much Electricity Does It Take to Charge a Tesla?

Electric vehicles, particularly Tesla, have become increasingly popular among car buyers. However, potential EV owners often have questions about the charging process and associated costs. If you’re considering switching to an electric vehicle, you’re likely wondering how much electricity is required to charge a Tesla.


Unlike refueling at a gas station, estimating the costs of charging an EV depends on several factors. The amount of electricity needed to charge a Tesla varies depending on usage and the specific model. In this article, we will delve into the details of Tesla charging requirements, providing valuable insights and information. Whether you already own a Tesla or are thinking about purchasing one, understanding the electricity consumption is crucial for optimizing your charging experience.

Introduction to EV Charging

To understand the charging process of an electric vehicle, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the three different charging levels: Level 1, Level 2, and DC fast charging. Let’s explore each level in detail.


Level 1 AC Charging

Level 1 charging is the most basic and slowest option available. It utilizes a standard 120-volt wall outlet, commonly found in homes. With this level of charging, you can expect a range of approximately 5-10 kilometers per hour. While Level 1 charging is suitable for routine battery top-ups, it may take several days to achieve a full charge.

Level 2 AC Charging

Level 2 charging utilizes a 220-volt plug, similar to those used by large home appliances. This level of charging is the preferred choice for home charging due to its convenience and efficiency. With Level 2 charging, you can acquire up to 100 kilometers of range per hour. In other words, it can fully charge your electric vehicle overnight. Both Level 1 and Level 2 charging can be used for charge a Tesla at home.

DC Fast Charging

Level 3 charging, also known as DC fast charging (DCFC), offers a significantly quicker and shorter charging process. DCFC chargers can provide between 50 kW and 350 kW of power and are typically found in public spaces, dealerships, and businesses. Depending on the voltage capacity of the EV, they can recharge an EV battery to 80% capacity in anywhere between 15 and 45 minutes.


Tesla Superchargers

Tesla vehicles are equipped with a robust charging system that allows for convenient and efficient charging. The cornerstone of this system is the Tesla Supercharger network. Strategically located across various regions, these high-power charging stations provide Tesla owners with quick and reliable options for long-distance travel.

The Tesla Supercharger network employs advanced technology to deliver a significant amount of power to your vehicle in a short period. This ensures that you can charge a Tesla quickly and get back on the road with minimal waiting time.


Charge a Tesla

Charge a Tesla: Factors Affecting Electricity Consumption

The amount of electricity required to charge a Tesla depends on various factors. Let’s explore the key elements that influence the electricity consumption.


Battery Capacity

Tesla offers different battery options for their vehicles, including Standard Range, Long Range, and Performance models. The battery capacity directly affects the energy storage of the vehicle, with larger batteries requiring more electricity for a full charge.


Charging Speed

The charging speed also impacts electricity consumption. Tesla vehicles support different charging rates depending on the charging equipment used. Faster charging speeds draw more electricity during the charging session.


Charging Efficiency

Tesla has made significant advancements in charging efficiency, minimizing energy loss during the process. However, it’s important to note that some energy is still lost as heat, affecting overall electricity consumption.


State of Charge

The state of charge (SoC) refers to the current battery level. Charging from a low SoC to a full charge requires more electricity compared to topping up a partially charged battery.


Calculating Costs of Charging an EV

Contrary to popular belief, Tesla vehicles consume relatively small amounts of electricity despite their powerful features. On average, a Tesla electric car utilizes approximately 34 kWh of electricity per 160 kilometers. With a charging efficiency of around 94% and a discharge efficiency of 90%, the electricity consumed by a Tesla battery remains remarkably low, alleviating concerns about high electric bills.


To estimate the electricity consumption for charging a Tesla, you can use the following formula:


Electricity Consumption = Battery Capacity (kWh) * Charging Efficiency


Let’s consider an example. Suppose you own a Tesla Model 3 with a Long Range battery capacity of 75 kWh and a charging efficiency of 90%. Using the formula, the electricity consumption can be calculated as follows:


Electricity Consumption = 75 kWh * 0.9 = 67.5 kWh


Thus, charge a Tesla Model 3 with a Long Range battery from empty to full would require approximately 67.5 kilowatt-hours of electricity.


The cost of electricity varies based on your location and the specific tariff you are on. To calculate the EV charging cost, multiply the electricity consumption (in kilowatt-hours) by the electricity rate per kilowatt-hour.


Charging a Tesla in Different Provinces in Canada

Home charging costs vary from one province to another in Canada, as well as according to your energy company’s rates. We can take the three major provinces where EVs are currently sold the most as our examples for calculating the charging costs: 


In Ontario, where the electricity rates are set at 7.4 cents per kWh during off-peak hours, suppose you own a Tesla Model 3 powered by a 53-kWh battery; it would cost you anywhere between $3.9 and $4.00 to fully charge your Tesla overnight from your home charger.


In Quebec, Hydro Québec’s rates are set at 7.3 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) during the first 2,480 kWh consumed. A similar scenario cost you anywhere between $3.80 and $4.00 to fully charge your Tesla from your home charger.


In British Columbia, where electricity costs 11.43 cents per kWh during the first 1,350 kWh consumed, expect to pay anywhere between $5.00 and $6.00 for an overnight home charge.


Charging a Tesla at home is the most affordable and convenient option for most electric vehicle owners. The best practice when owning an electric car, including a Tesla, is to plug it in the evening before going to bed and unplug it in the morning, similar to charging a smartphone.

Typically, EV buyers purchase a level 2 (240-volt) home charger for this purpose. The charging cycle usually takes between 8 and 12 hours, depending on the model you own. As the charging occurs during off-peak hours, energy consumption rates are typically lower.


Cost of Charging: Tesla Supercharger and Public Chargers

When you’re on the go, you’ll need to rely on public charging stations to recharge your Tesla. Fortunately, Tesla has a well-established Supercharger network that allows you easily locate these chargers through the Tesla app or your car’s infotainment system.


Tesla offers different rates and deals for the Supercharger service. For example, Tesla had provided a free one-year trial to new Model 3 buyers. Typically, Tesla rates hover around 56 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh), although actual rates vary at each charging station based on their power capabilities.


If you’re not using a Tesla Supercharger, public chargers are also available. However, keep in mind that some of these chargers may require a special adapter to connect to your Tesla.


Rates for public charging installations typically vary between different companies. Some bill you per kWh, while others, like Quebec’s Electric Circuit grid, charge per minute or hour. As of now, EV owners in Canada typically pay no more than $20.00 to charge their cars on a public charger.


Tesla Charging Costs vs. Gasoline Expenses

Comparing the cost of charging a Tesla with traditional gasoline expenses, electric charging proves to be more cost-effective. With the current average gasoline price of $3.66 per gallon, it would cost approximately $45 to fill up a 12-gallon car tank. Assuming a fuel efficiency of 50 kilometers per gallon, a full tank would provide a range of 480 kilometers.


On the other hand, driving a Tesla for the same distance would cost only about $20, resulting in over 40% savings. It’s important to note that these calculations are based on current national averages and may vary over time.


Other Factors Impacting EV Charging

Studies have shown that temperature significantly affects the battery efficiency of Tesla vehicles. During colder months, the range of your Tesla is likely to be reduced compared to warmer seasons. Batteries operate most efficiently within a specific temperature range, similar to how your phone’s battery depletes more quickly in cold weather. To mitigate this, Teslas are equipped with onboard heaters to maintain optimal battery temperature. It’s important to note that the energy used for heating the battery is separate from the energy used for propulsion.


Charging Time for Tesla

The time required to charge a Tesla depends on the battery capacity and charging wattage. For example, using an 11.5 kW home charger, a Standard Range Model 3 with a 50 kWh capacity will take approximately 4 hours and 20 minutes to charge. Models with a capacity of 100 kWh will take around 8 hours and 41 minutes. These charging speeds can be significantly accelerated when using a Supercharger at a local charging station.


In conclusion, understanding the electricity consumption of charging a Tesla is crucial for optimizing your charging experience and managing your energy consumption. We have explored the various charging options provided by Tesla, the factors influencing electricity consumption, and how to estimate the amount of electricity required. By making informed decisions and utilizing the available charging infrastructure effectively, you can enjoy the benefits of owning a Tesla while minimizing your environmental footprint.


Remember, as you embark on your electric vehicle journey, the charging process is just one aspect of the overall experience. Embrace the efficiency and innovation of Tesla’s charging solutions and explore the world of sustainable transportation.


As always, Carnex can provide you with detailed information about buying and owning electric vehicles in Canada.

Carnex is the top online EV expert in Canada for buying and selling electric vehicles.

Looking to buy an electric vehicle and want to save money? Get the best electric vehicle deals at Carnex!

Visit Carnax today and discover the best deals on EVs.


More from Carnex Blog:

The Benefits and Drawbacks of Buying a Used EV in Canada: What You Need to Consider

Should you charge your electric vehicle every night? Here are what you should know

Will Buying an Electric Vehicle Save You Money?

Learn more about the benefits of buying from Carnex. We believe that all clients deserve to know the good and bad of what they’re buying. Because we wanted to know these when we bought cars. That’s why at, we will proudly display every detail every step of the way. Browse all the best cars, automobile buying tips, auto insurance, young drivers, driving techniques, auto industry trends from Carnex Blog.

Top 8 Most Affordable Used Electric Vehicles in Canada

Electric vehicles account for about 5% of new automobile sales these days. While this is still far from a majority, it does mean that more and more...

Top 6 vehicles that owners keep the longest

Which vehicles are kept the longest by car owners? And how long will you plan to keep your car? Automotive research firm has compiled a...

6 Signs You Need to Take Better Care of Your Vehicle

Whether you own a brand-new model or an old vehicle, you will need proper maintenances from time to time. Since it will not only keep your vehicle...

The Top 7 Reasons to Buy a Used Electric Vehicles in 2022

By entering 2022, electric vehicles are becoming super popular in Canada as people become more mindful of climate change. Driving an electric...

How Well Do Used Electric Vehicles Hold Their Value?

With the boycott of diesel and petroleum vehicles by 2035 driven by governments worldwide, EVs are getting more and more attention today. While...

How to Buy a Used Electric Vehicle Online in Canada

Since the pandemic, there has been a shift in consumer patterns as well as consumer habits that has caused a change in the methods employed to...

10 Best Electric SUVs You Can Buy in Canada

In recent years, electric vehicles have grown in popularity in Canada as environmental concerns have grown. An increasing number of Canadians are...

5 Mistakes to Avoid When Selling Your Used EV in Canada

The Top Mistakes to Avoid When Selling Your Used EV in Canada Selling a used car is never easy, and sellers can miss out on thousands of dollars if...

Tesla Road Trip: All You Need To Know For A Great EV Road Trip in Ontario

Tesla Road Trip: All You Need To Know For A Great EV Road Trip in Ontario   Road trips are an enjoyable and memorable experience, and choosing...

Who is Carnex?

Carnex is an online EV dealer built for Canadians to buy and sell electric vehicles. Our mission is to provide Canadians with an alternative and transparent way to buy and sell used electric vehicles and to accelerate the transition to a sustainable green future. is Canada’s first e-commerce platform for used Electric Vehicles. Carnex is the leading Online Car Dealership in Ontario, with the company’s headquarters located in Toronto, Ontario.
Carnex is the fastest and cheapest way to buy a car online. We deliver to your door and collect your old car without extra charges. Buy Now-Pay Later Financing is available.

Why buy from Carnex?

Carnex is trusted by over 18 million buyers to find amazing discounts on used EVs and new EVs in their neighbourhood. Carnex specializes in electric vehicles, and we make the effort to make sure your EV purchase from us will be worry-free. Our skilled EV technicians perform a comprehensive diagnostic on all of our electric vehicles at Carnex because your satisfaction is very important to us. will help you find the best EV bargains among the listings across Canada, and we’ll provide you with the vehicle history and comprehensive reviews for each EV.

Why Choose Us

We choose to only sale quality and zero-accident used vehicles. We are so confident in our cars that we will shamelessly show you all the perfections and imperfections of the vehicle – from the Chasis pictures to chipped paint spots.

We also offer a 9-day no question asked return policy and an 100-day in house mechanical warranty to make your purchase risk-free.

Get In Touch

9 + 12 =