Tesla Won’t Charge at Supercharger? [Here’s How to Fix]

So if your Tesla is not charging at supercharger then there are a few quick checks you should do first.

In simplest terms, it could mean that either Tesla supercharger is not working itself or some glitch in the vehicle, charging connection, or any payment issues.

Sometimes it happens that Tesla charges at other level 2 or level 1 charger but won’t charge at the supercharger.

The most common message you can get on the Tesla display when Tesla is unable to charge at the supercharger is “charging equipment not ready“.

It is quite frustrating that, going on some road trip relying on the superchargers for the juice, and it doesn’t work on time leaving you in between empty roads.

So let’s look into what you can do if you face Tesla charging problems at supercharger.

It is like you tick-mark troubleshooting steps one by one and you will reach the solution that works.

So here it is.

Why won’t My Tesla Charge at Supercharger?

Charging equipment is not ready

The most common cause of Tesla supercharger not charging is improper connection. And so Tesla will show ‘Charging equipment not ready’ error on screen.

So here are some really quick things you can try (You might have already tried some of these). This can solve some connection issues while supercharging your Tesla.

Reinsert the Plug (This is too a simple you might have already tried)

Remove the charging plug from the charge port and Reinsert it properly.

If that doesn’t work then,

Clean Charge Port and Charging Plug

If some dust, debris or moisture is present in the charge port or plug then it might be causing the connection issue

So remove the charging handle, clean the charge port and the plug with a soft cloth and then check.

You can gently clean it with cotton or earbuds.

You can also do a gentle air blow with a blower or with your mouth inside the charge port and plug. It can also remove some dry specks of dust inside.

Charging in too Cold Weather?

If you see some snow frozen in the charge port or if too cold temperature then it can also cause supercharger connection issues.

So do as explained below then try to charge again.

Defrost Tesla

Defrosting Tesla will evaporate the snow or moisture inside the charge port and solves connection issue

You can defrost Tesla from the Tesla app or in-car touchscreen display.

Under climate controls, you can turn on the Defrost option.

Defrost will take around 30 minutes.

This will also precondition Tesla’s battery.

Or you can do preconditioning of Tesla as well instead.

Now try charging and see.

Precondition Tesla Battery

Under climate controls either in the Tesla app or in-car display touchscreen, you see a “fan” symbol.

Just tap on it and it will start preconditioning the Tesla.

It will automatically get turned off once preconditioning is done.

Note: In case you already have scheduled departure to the Tesla supercharger before 30-45 mins of distance then there is no point for you to look into the defrost or precondition option. Tesla has already done that once you reach the supercharger.

If cold weather causing the charging problems then this should solve the issue.

Now if it does not work then check the below things.

Verify that the Supercharging Station is Working

If the Tesla supercharger is not working then it’s not the issue with the car.

If you see that other cars are charging there already or check the charging was working on the charging stall where you are.

If Tesla supercharger was working then it was not a problem with the supercharger.

But if you can’t check that or nobody is around to ask to then just check with nearby supercharging stalls whether you can charge there.

Or you can contact the supercharger support number listed on each supercharger stall to confirm whether the supercharger is in working condition.

If you can’t confirm that and if you have some juice leftover, you can drive to nearby working superchargers and check there.

(Important: If still the same issue at other supercharging stations and if you have enough SoC to drive nearby and much time then, just for the matter of situation find some level 2 or level 1 charger nearby and have enough juice.)

Else you have to contact Tesla roadside to tow it to a nearby service centre.

But, if you confirmed that the supercharger is working then it is likely possible that now your Tesla has some glitch. This can be resolved with a simple process. I will discuss it in a later section here.

But before heading to resolve the Tesla glitch just check a couple of things related to payment.

Tesla Supercharger Payment Issues

Just confirm that you have an active payment method added to your Tesla account. You can check it in your Tesla app account>Charging>Manage Payment section.

The payment method should be active and working. If it has been modified then the same has to be updated in your Tesla account.

Follow the below steps to add or modify the payment method.

Add Payment Method in Tesla App

You can add a payment method in Tesla app by following the below steps,

  1. Open Tesla app
  2. Tap on the profile picture located on the top-right corner
  3. Tap on ‘Charging
  4. Tap on ‘Manage Payment Method
  5. Tap on ‘Add payment Method’.

Otherwise, you can also add a payment method from your Tesla account.

Add Payment Method in Tesla Account

You can also add a payment method from your Tesla account if you don’t use or have access to Tesla app. Follow the below steps for that.

  1. Log in to Tesla account
  2. Go to ‘Manage
  3. Click on ‘Payment
  4. Select ‘Add Payment Method
  5. Follow the prompts to enter payment method details
  6. Click on ‘Save

If you need to change the payment method then first remove the old payment method then add new one.

You can add American Express, Discover Card, JCB, MasterCard, Visa, or Diners Card as your payment method in the Tesla app.

In case you are using free credits to charge at supercharger then check the below things.

Tesla Free Supercharging Balance

If you are using free supercharging credits as Tesla gives with ownership or with a referral program.

If you have used all of the balance then it can cause the Tesla supercharger to not charge your Tesla.

To see if you have free supercharging available, follow the below steps:

  1. Open Tesla app
  2. Tap on ‘Specs and Warranty
  3. Here you can see the free supercharging status for your Tesla.

Or you can follow the below steps to check if free supercharging credit balance is available,

  1. Open Tesla app
  2. Tap on the profile picture located on the top-right corner
  3. Tap ‘Refer and Earn
  4. Tap ‘History

Here you can see if Tesla free supercharging is available for you.

(Note: Free supercharging is valid only for the first 2 years from the delivery date and is only available for the first owner and can’t be transferable to another vehicle or owner.)

If you don’t see any free supercharging available then it means that it is expired. Once it has expired, it won’t show in the Tesla app or your Tesla account.

So if you run out of free supercharging then your regular supercharging fees will be applied.

Now if you don’t have any free supercharging left or expired then you have to set up a payment method in the Tesla app to charge at the supercharger.

Then supercharging fees will be automatically processed from the payment method you have set up.

If you haven’t set up payment method then Tesla won’t charge at supercharger.

What if you couldn’t add Payment Method?

Pay After Supercharging Session

In case you can’t add or can’t do a payment method set up due to whatever reasons in either Tesla app or in Tesla account and go for supercharging Tesla then you will be prompted to enter the payment method on the in-car display once you complete a supercharging session.

This is a one-time payment you can make for the supercharging session. This is different from the payment method you add to your Tesla account.

Note: For this to happen you need to have the latest software updated in your Tesla. I explained how to update software in later a section here.

You will see the touchscreen like this in the below image once the supercharging session is done. To pay for the supercharging session follow the below steps,

  • Click on the ‘Payment method required‘ button

(Note: If you can’t click on that button then contact Tesla customer support about the supercharging issue)

Charging method required Tesla in car display add payment method for supercharging 1
Payment Method Required – Tesla in-car prompt to add a payment method for supercharging
Source: Community

2. Then here, you need to add a payment method

Tesla in car add payment method for supercharging
Tesla in-car display add payment method prompt
Source: Community
  • Now, click on ‘PAY NOW’
Tesla in car add payment method for supercharging step 2 pay now
Pay for Tesla supercharging session
Source: Community
  • Now, wait for a few moments to complete the payment
in car ad payment complete for supercharging session
Payment complete for supercharging session
Source: Community

Once payment is completed, you won’t face any supercharging issues for your Tesla next time.

Any Past Payment Due for Supercharging?

But, in case you don’t pay for the supercharging session then you can’t charge Tesla at supercharger next time without adding a payment method.

So next time you need to add a payment method beforehand charging Tesla at the supercharger. Only then your Tesla will charge at the supercharger.

So yes, if any payment for the previous supercharging session is pending then you won’t be able to charge Tesla at supercharger until you pay the due payment.

Other Payment Method Related Issues

Check Payment Method Status

If you have already set up the payment method earlier then it is recommended to check whether the payment method you had set up is there without any issue.

Or the payment method has been removed unknowingly or due to whatever reasons.

Forgot to Update the Latest Payment Method?

See whether you have recently made any changes to your card or if the card you use has expired. If so you have to add updated payment method in your Tesla account.

Not Enough Fund

Not having enough funds available can also cause the issue.

In such cases again Tesla will not charge at supercharger.

If any issue with the payment method or funds like those above then sort it out and try again to supercharge your Tesla.

It should work now and Tesla should charge at the supercharger now if payment was causing the problem earlier.

Confirmed – No Payment-Related Issues

Now, if you see there is no issue in the payment method or you have fixed issues with either the free supercharging balance or payment method and still Tesla not charging at the supercharger then there is probably some glitch in the Tesla car itself.

Due to any glitches in the Tesla system, Tesla won’t charge at supercharger.

There are a couple of ways you can remove any glitch from the Tesla system as explained below.

Remove Tesla Vehicle Glitches

Soft Reboot Tesla

(It is also called Soft reset Tesla)

The soft reset Tesla can remove any minor glitches in Tesla’s computer system that might be causing Tesla charging issues with the supercharger.

You can just try a soft reboot first and see if that solves Tesla supercharging issue.

Steps to Soft Reboot Tesla:

  1. First Park the Tesla and turn on “P” or park mode
  2. Now, Press and hold both scroll wheels over steering wheels
  3. Keep buttons pressed till the screen goes out
  4. Then release the buttons
  5. Now wait for the Tesla logo to come on screen
  6. Once Tesla logo comes on screen that means soft reboot Is completed.

It can take around 30 sec to 1 minute to complete the soft reboot.

Now check whether Tesla charges at the supercharger.

If Yes.. then Good to Go..!

If No..! Then try Hard Reset as explained below.

Hard Reboot Tesla

(It is also called Hard reset Tesla)

The hard reset Tesla can remove any alerts, warnings, or errors in Tesla’s computer system that might be causing issues in supercharging Tesla.

Steps:

  1. First Park the Tesla and turn on “P” or park mode
  2. Now, press the brake pedal and scroll wheels together
  3. Now, the Tesla display will turn off (Keep both pressed)
  4. Still, Keep the brake and scroll wheels pressed until the screen comes in again
  5. Once the Tesla screen turns on, the hard reset is complete.

Now just again try to connect the supercharger to Tesla and see if that works.

If Works.. Good to Go..!

If No..! Then the only one ‘Culprit’ could be causing it now!

Everything at Proper Place? – Look at This Underestimated Issue

I have seen many Tesla owners having all the above things in the proper place and still not being able to charge Tesla at supercharger.

And they reach out to the service center. At the service center, they do this thing I am going to tell you here and it solves the supercharging problem.

You can avoid visiting the Tesla service center this way saving your time, energy, and money. It works in most of the cases.

This is the most under-estimated factor most Tesla owners miss, it is Software Updates.

Software Updates

If you have an older version of software in your Tesla then any bug or glitch can cause Tesla charging issues at the supercharger. (And you won’t even notice it).

Then you need to update the Tesla software and check. You can do this later if you manage to charge at nearby level 1 or 2 chargers or have enough charge, as software updates can take around 30 minutes to complete.

Install Latest Tesla Software

Steps to update Tesla system software:

  1. Head on to Tesla touchscreen or Tesla app
  2. Go to the ‘Software’ tab
  3. Check, whether any software updates are available and pending to install
  4. If software updates are available then you will receive a notification on the screen display with an installation option.
  5. If software update is available then just install it right there.

This is the thing Tesla service center people do at first!

(Note: To install software updates in Tesla, the Tesla car should be connected to your phone’s Wi-Fi with an active internet connection.)

Now, wait for the update to complete.

Once the software update is completed, then now try to supercharge your Tesla.

You will see most probably that now Tesla supercharging will work.

If it worked… That’s all!

But even after the software update if you still are not able to charge at the Tesla supercharger then there is surely some deeper damage to some parts in your Tesla charging system, which you can’t do anything just by yourself.

But still, there is one doorway for you if you are falling into that scenario. Here it is.

Below 10% SoC before Supercharging?

(If this isn’t your story, then a solution awaits you in the next section)

Now, in case you reach the supercharger and Tesla has already gone below 10% of battery level and you see Tesla is not charging at the supercharger then this is a different thing. It is not a problem.

If you have a too-low SoC below 10% or around then you won’t see your Tesla charges right away at the supercharger.

In that case, due to low SoC Tesla Battery management system is preventing sudden supercharging at too low SoC to protect the battery and avoid damage.

Tesla will take its own time to prepare battery conditions to accept supercharging.

In this case, you just plug in the supercharger and wait for 20-45 minutes.

You will see Tesla starts supercharging after some time.

However many Tesla owners don’t wait much or wait for a few minutes and conclude that Tesla is not charging at a supercharger.

So if you see it starts charging later then… Good to Go..!

But, if this is not your case then only the last option is available for you. Here it is.

Contact Tesla Customer Support – At Last

Still, if you see that Tesla is not at all charging at the supercharger then it is time to contact Tesla customer support.

They will be able to access certain things in your Tesla and recommend any steps or can ask to schedule an appointment at the Tesla service center.

Also, if you are stuck between remote highways then you can call out Tesla roadside assistance

They can tow your vehicle to the nearest Tesla service center.

Consistently suffering from Tesla Supercharging Issues?

In case you frequently face Tesla supercharging issues then probably it is time for a service.

Tesla is Charging Slow at Supercharger

Again this is the issue falling within the criteria in which it is best to contact Tesla customer support.

But many Tesla owners have faced this and some insider things came up on the surface which is not officially stated by Tesla otherwise.

It is said that ‘After too many DC or supercharging cycles Tesla system automatically slows down the speed of supercharging to protect the battery as a protection mechanism.

Tesla supercharging with time and a certain frequency degrades the Tesla battery’s health.

But again this is not ALL of why Tesla slowly charges at supercharger.

This is just one of the probable reasons if you face this situation. It needs a whole different article to cover this topic of slow charging issues at superchargers.

Conclusion

So I have shown you what to do from simple quick fixes to some technical fixes if Tesla is not charging at the supercharger.

I hope you have found this guide helpful.

Then see you in the next article!

Summary

Why is my Tesla unable to charge at the Supercharger?

The issue could range from,
1. Improper connection
2. Too cold ambient temperature
3. Payment method not properly set up
4. Unpaid or due balance
4. Some internal glitches in Tesla
5. Using an older version of software
6. SoC is below 10%
7. Faulty supercharger

To solve all of the above problems I have given a detailed guide on each in this article.

What to do when Tesla says charging equipment is not ready?

It means a connection is not properly made between charging connector and Tesla charge port. To solve this you can disconnect the charger and reconnect again by fully inserting charging connector in charge port. Also if there’s dust or debris inside charge port or charging connector it will show this error. So you need to clean it with earbuds or a cotton cloth or with just a gentle mouth air blow.

Steve
Steve

An engineer turned entrepreneur, being a Tech-enthusiast I am passionate about helping people understand and embrace the potential of technology in an insightful manner. At EV Chargers Guide, I help EV owners to navigate the Electric Revolution by providing in-depth guides to overcome their EV charging challenges and helping to make the Best choice selecting Charging Equipment for their EVs.

2 Comments
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  1. Yea I had to wait for 30 mins before proper charging started. Battery was just about to deplete totally. never let it go below 10%. It takes lot of time in charging.

  2. My free balance got used and I had to set up payment method in my account. I just forgot it’s just limited credits there on supercharger.

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