Css attributes

What is the Tesla CSS Charging Adapter and who needs it?

In September 2022, Tesla launched its Combined Charging System (CCS) adapter in the United States, pricing the device at $250.

If you’re a Tesla driver, you might have been anticipating this release for some time. Or maybe you didn’t know this was coming.

Either way, the adapter could be a game-changer when charging your Tesla.

But what exactly is a CCS adapter? What does it do? Who needs it? Is it worth the price? Which Tesla models is it compatible with?

Big questions! Let’s discuss the answers.

What is a Tesla CCS adapter and what is it used for?

Picture: Tesla

While Tesla’s charging network is formidable, it doesn’t cover every square mile in the United States. This is where the CCS adapter comes in.

Tesla isn’t the only company providing charging stations in the United States. However, without the right adapter, plugging your Tesla into a third-party port is like trying to plug a kettle into a phone jack. Go ahead, try it.

The CCS adapter solves this problem by making Tesla’s charging port compatible with third-party networks. It does this by attaching it to the end of the charging cable before connecting it to your vehicle.

Now, when your vehicle runs out of electric fuel, you no longer need to be within range of a Tesla Supercharger. Any charging station will do.

The CCS adapter can theoretically charge at speeds of up to 250kW. The actual speed will depend on the third-party network. However, in desperate times, slower charging is better than no charging at all.

Who needs a Tesla CCS charging adapter?

The Tesla CCS Adapter could be useful when:

  • Driving long distances
  • Live in an area where Tesla charging stations are rare
  • Third-party resorts offer cheaper prices
  • Want more flexibility when it comes to charging options

If you travel long distances, having the option of charging your vehicle at a third-party station can be useful.

tesla css combo charing adapter on purple background
Image: KnowTechie

Have you ever run out of charge or gas while passing a station and decided to move on to the next one only to realize you won’t make it? Many of us have been there.

If you drive a Tesla, being able to charge at a third-party station could save you from disaster.

Likewise, living in an area that Tesla hasn’t yet covered with charging stations could be problematic. In this case, the ability to plug into any hole could make life much easier.

If you’re concerned about the price of charging at a Tesla station and third-party networks offer a better deal, the CCS adapter could save you some money. Choice drives competition.

Finally, if you just want a little more flexibility when charging your Tesla, the CCS Adapter may be just what you’re looking for.

tesla compressor
Image: Unsplash

Is Tesla’s CCS Adapter Worth the Price?

When deciding if the CCS adapter is worth the price, you need to ask yourself these questions:

  • Will I use it?
  • Will it make my life easier?
  • Can I afford it? (if you own a Tesla, the answer is probably yes)

If you answered yes to all three questions, the Tesla CCS adapter is probably worth the cost. However, not all models are compatible with the device.

Which Tesla models are compatible with the CCS adapter?

If your Tesla is running software 2021.40 or later, you can check compatibility through the control panel.

Here’s how to check if your Tesla is compatible with the CCS adapter

  1. Go to SettingsSoftwareAdditional vehicle information
  2. Check the CCS adapter support entry to see if the hardware is installed. You should either see Enabled if installed or Not installed otherwise
tesla css charing adapter compatibility screenshot
Image: KnowTechie

Additionally, you can also log in to your Tesla Account to check compatibility.

If your vehicle is not CCS-capable, don’t worry. The adapter’s product page on the Tesla Store hints that the upgrade could be available in early 2023.

Is it time to buy a Tesla CCS adapter?

tesla combo css 1 charging adapter
Image: KnowTechie

For many, Tesla’s CCS adapter is a welcome release. Compatibility with third-party charging stations has the potential to make your life easier.

For others with easy access to the Tesla Supercharger network, the adapter may not be necessary. However, it could still come in handy in an emergency.

Should You Buy Tesla’s CCS Adapter? If you own a Tesla, of course, that doesn’t hurt. But this is not entirely necessary.

Do you have any thoughts on this? Report the discussion to our Twitter or facebook.

Editors recommendations:

Matt is an Australian writer with a degree in creative and critical writing. Before starting his studies, he worked in technical support and gained valuable knowledge about technology and its users. He is also an editor and author coach at Dean Publishing.