Why Is My Tesla Only Charging at 16 Amps: Troubleshooting

Owning a Tesla comes with the convenience of charging at home, ensuring your electric vehicle is ready for the road. However, encountering charging issues can be a frustrating experience.

One common concern among Tesla owners is the perplexing situation of the car only charging at 16 amps instead of the expected higher rate.

In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the possible reasons behind this issue and explore the troubleshooting steps to resolve it.

Understanding the Problem

Tesla owners have reported instances where their vehicles, equipped with a NEMA 14-50 outlet for home charging, suddenly start charging at a mere 16 amps, significantly below the expected rate.

This anomaly raises concerns about the charging efficiency and prompts users to seek solutions.

Possible Causes

Several factors could contribute to a Tesla charging at a reduced rate. Understanding these factors is crucial for effective troubleshooting. Some potential causes include:

Connection Issues:

A common culprit for reduced charging speed is poor connectivity. Ensure that the charging cable is securely plugged into both the Tesla and the NEMA 14-50 outlet. A loose or improperly connected plug can lead to a decrease in charging amperage.

Wiring Problems:

Issues with the home charging infrastructure, such as faulty wiring, can impede the flow of electricity. Inspect the outlet, and if possible, have a professional electrician examine the wiring to ensure it meets the necessary specifications for charging a Tesla.

Temperature Concerns:

Cold weather may affect the charging speed, but it should not cause a significant drop to 16 amps. However, extreme temperatures can impact battery performance. Ensure your Tesla is parked in a reasonably temperate environment during charging.

Software or Firmware Issues:

Check for any available software updates for your Tesla. Outdated firmware can sometimes lead to unexpected glitches in charging behavior. If an update is available, install it and observe if the issue persists.

Charger Malfunction:

The Mobile Charger that comes with the Tesla may have internal faults. If possible, try using a different charger or visit a public charging station to rule out issues with the Tesla Mobile Charger.

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Power Supply Issues:

If you’re charging at home, check if there are any issues with your home electrical supply. Ensure that the circuit breaker for the charging outlet is not tripped.

Charging Settings:

Check the charging settings on your Tesla. Some models allow you to adjust the charging speed. Ensure that the charging current is set to the maximum supported by your vehicle.

Also read: What’s the Best Amperage to Charge Tesla? (To Prevent Battery Degradation)

Troubleshooting Steps

Now that we’ve identified potential causes, let’s explore the step-by-step troubleshooting process:

1. Check Connectivity:

Ensure a secure connection between the charging cable and both the Tesla and the NEMA 14-50 outlet. A firm click should be felt when plugging in the charger.

2. Inspect Wiring:

Examine the outlet and wiring for any signs of damage. If you suspect wiring issues, consult with a qualified electrician to assess and rectify the situation.

3. Review Environmental Conditions:

Take note of the temperature during charging. While Teslas are designed to handle a range of temperatures, extremely cold conditions may impact the charging process. Consider warming up the garage or parking space.

3. Update Software:

Check for any available software updates for your Tesla. Follow the update process outlined in the vehicle’s interface and ensure that the firmware is current.

4. Try an Alternative Charger:

Test your Tesla with a different charger, either from a friend or at a public Level 2 charging station. This will help determine if the issue lies with the Tesla Mobile Charger or the car itself.

5. Contact Tesla Service:

If all else fails, reaching out to Tesla Service is a prudent step. They can conduct remote diagnostics and, if necessary, guide you through further troubleshooting or schedule a service appointment.


Experiencing reduced charging speeds in your Tesla can be perplexing, but by systematically addressing potential issues, you can often identify and resolve the problem.

From checking connections to reviewing environmental conditions, following these troubleshooting steps will help ensure your Tesla charges at the optimal rate, keeping you on the road with confidence in your electric vehicle.

If challenges persist, don’t hesitate to seek assistance from Tesla’s dedicated service team to get your charging back on track.