A battery is the most expensive component of a Tesla (or any electric vehicle). So before you consider getting one, you probably want to know how long a Tesla battery lasts. A Tesla battery goes approximately 303 to 405 miles on a full charge and is reported to last about 300,000 to 500,000 miles over its lifespan. This article will explain how ranges vary between Tesla models, why different cars have different ranges, and how many miles various Tesla batteries last.
On average, a Tesla battery lasts 347 miles on a single charge
Tesla car models all have different estimated ranges – from the Model Y Performance at 303 miles to the Model S at 405 miles
Tesla's stated ranges are estimates, and factors like your driving style and the weather conditions will impact how long your battery actually lasts
A Tesla's battery life is supposed to last between 300,000 and 500,000 miles
You can power your electric car battery for free by charging it with solar energy generated right at home – use the EnergySage Marketplace to compare quotes.
On average, Tesla car batteries last for 336 miles on a single charge. The lowest-range Tesla, the Model 3, lasts for 267 miles, while the longest-range Tesla, the Model S, lasts for 405 miles. These are stated mileage averages by Tesla, so it's definitely not a guarantee that your Tesla will get exactly the range listed below. Factors like your driving style and the weather will impact how many miles your Tesla battery lasts.
Why do Tesla models vary by range?
Several factors affect the overall range of your Tesla, with the model being a primary reason. For example, the affordable Model 3 has a smaller internal battery. On the other hand, the long-range Model S has great acceleration and a larger, more efficient battery. It's important to note that with a greater range comes a higher cost. More specific factors will also impact your actual range compared to the standard range listed.
With more and more offerings each year, Teslas come in many different ranges on a fully-charged battery:
How long do Tesla batteries last? Ranges by car model
Model And Version
|Model 3 Long Range||358 miles|
|Model 3 Performance||315 miles|
|Model S||405 miles|
|Model S Plaid||396 miles|
|Model X||348 miles|
|Model X Plaid||333 miles|
|Model Y Long Range||330 miles|
|Model Y Performance||303 miles|
All Tesla models have impressive ranges, especially compared to other electric vehicles on the market. With Tesla's network of chargers growing around the country, you can take most on long road trips and feel relatively comfortable getting where you need to go. For a daily commuter, the Model 3 will perform just fine and might need charging every few days. Either Model S option provides tons of range for longer road trips, so you can travel without stopping at Superchargers – Tesla's large network of super-fast charging stations – too many times along the way. It also has other options like AWD, which can affect charging rates but have greater performance.
After seeing the various Tesla model's battery longevity, you may wonder why they vary so much. Like conventional gas-powered car makers, Tesla's car models each have elements that make them unique and subsequently impact how long their batteries last. Most importantly, battery size and car model each play a big part in determining a Tesla's specific range.
As a general rule of thumb, a bigger battery means more energy storage and a longer range. For example, the Tesla Model S has a 98 kilowatt-hour (kWh) battery, while the Model 3 is equipped with an 80.5 kWh battery. This makes sense, as the Model S has a much longer range than the Model 3 (405 miles vs. 315 miles, respectively).
At the end of the day, electric cars that use their stored energy more efficiently will get more mileage out of their battery. Aerodynamics, friction between tires and the road, drivetrain efficiency, car weight, and more all play a role. A Tesla model with state-of-the-art drivetrain technology (usually in newer models) and low weight will use stored electricity more efficiently than a model with an older, less efficient drivetrain and a bulkier frame.
On Twitter, Elon Musk explained that Tesla car batteries should last for 300,000 to 500,000 miles or 1,500 battery charge cycles. That's between 22 and 37 years for the average car driver, who, according to the Department of Transportation (DOT), drives 13,476 miles per year. One Tesla owner has reportedly driven his Tesla Model S over a million miles, according to CleanTechnica. Though that Tesla battery has lasted, the owner reports having replaced his Tesla motor several times.
How long does a Tesla battery warranty last?
It's one thing to know how long a Tesla vehicle's battery could last, but it's another to know how long it should last with reasonable performance. The 300,000 to 500,000 miles mentioned by Elon Musk on Twitter isn't the same as Tesla's battery warranty.
A new Tesla battery and drive unit warranty covers two things:
Length of time or miles driven (eight years or 100,000 to 150,000 miles driven, depending on the model), whichever comes first
A guaranteed battery capacity of 70 percent of its starting capacity during the warranty period
So, for the Model S, Tesla says that if your car holds less than 70 percent of its original battery capacity after driving it for eight years or 100,000 to 150,000 miles (whichever comes first), you're eligible for "any repair or replacement necessary to correct defects in the materials or workmanship," for free.
Tesla car battery warranties by model
Battery Capacity Retention
|Model S||8 years or 150,000 miles||70%|
|Model X||8 years or 150,000 miles||70%|
|Model 3||8 years or 100,000 miles||70%|
|Model 3 Long Range||8 years or 120,000 miles||70%|
|Model 3 Performance||8 years or 120,000 miles||70%|
|Model Y Long Range||8 years or 120,000 miles||70%|
|Model Y Performance||8 years or 120,000 miles||70%|
Source: Tesla website
Tesla's battery warranty is pretty comparable to other popular EV models:
Nissan Leaf EV: eight-year or 100,000-mile warranty, guarantees 75 percent of battery capacity
Toyota EVs: eight-year or 100,000-mile warranty, guarantees 70 percent of battery capacity
Ford Mustang Mach-E EV: eight-year or 100,000-mile warranty, guarantees 70 percent of battery capacity
The lowest mileage warranty available from Tesla currently is their Model 3 warranty at 100,000 miles for eight years. For context, that's 12,500 miles a year, 240 miles a week, or 24 miles a day.
Tesla battery degradation
Tesla EVs use lithium-ion batteries, like other EV batteries. Tesla's battery technology is similar to other large and small rechargeable batteries: as time goes on, a battery loses some of its ability to hold a charge over the battery's lifespan. Think of how a brand-new smartphone's battery life compares to one that's a few years old –by continuously recharging and draining your phone's battery; you'll cause it to lose some of its ability to hold a charge.
Your Tesla battery will deteriorate similarly, which isn't an indicator of any product flaw. All batteries lose some of their ability to hold a charge over time after extended usage, whether it's an electric vehicle battery, a home energy battery, or a rechargeable AA battery. This is why Tesla offers a warranty that guarantees a certain percentage of battery capacity over a set period.
Tips to increase your Tesla battery's life
Here are some tips compiled from Tesla support and drivers to support good battery management. These can help decrease your Tesla battery degradation and increase its overall lifespan:
For everyday charging, use a low-voltage charger like the Tesla Wall Connector.
Generally, you want to keep your Tesla battery from getting too full or empty. However, if you have a rear-wheel drive Tesla, you should regularly charge your EV to 100 percent whenever possible. For a front-wheel drive Tesla, you'll usually want to cap your regular charging at 90 percent or less of the total battery capacity for daily driving.
Use extremely fast Superchargers (DC charging) only when necessary. The fastest Superchargers heat your battery substantially, so overusing them can decrease your battery's life.
As long as your Tesla battery is under warranty, Tesla will repair or replace it at no charge. However, if your battery needs to be replaced after the warranty expires, you would be responsible for replacing it, and it is one of the most expensive parts of a Tesla.
In the same tweet mentioned above, Musk claims it would cost between $5,000 and $7,000 to replace a battery module – but remember that the Tesla battery pack contains multiple modules.
The reality of real-world Tesla battery replacement costs may vary, depending on how many modules you need to replace. Electrek looked at real-life Tesla battery cost examples, noting that they've seen Tesla owners get service quotes for battery pack replacements as high as $20,000 to $30,000.
One EnergySage team member previously had an issue with a Tesla Model S battery not properly charging after four years of ownership. Because the battery was covered in the warranty period, their local service center replaced it with a new battery pack at no cost after testing the battery. Getting a replacement battery can be a bit of a process and take time. You'll likely need to take your Tesla to the nearest service center, and they'll run tests (or may even need to send it to the Tesla factory) to confirm the issues and if it's repairable. They sometimes may install a loaner battery pack to take your battery packs out and send it off for further testing.
One of the most common questions about Teslas and electric cars, in general, is about EV charging. With a generally lower range than traditional gas-powered cars, how can you ensure you're charged up and won't get stranded? In reality, this is likely not a problem for most car owners – you don't travel far enough at once or into remote enough places without access to an EV charger. According to the U.S. DOT, the average driver drives only 37 miles per day, which is well below most Teslas' average range per charge.
Granted, if you have a long commute, you may need to charge daily or top off your battery to make it home. Whether it's at your home with a Wall Connector, at a Tesla Supercharger, or using Destination charger locations, you'll most likely be able to get your Tesla fueled up just fine. Check out our Tesla charging guide to learn more.
How long does it take to charge a Tesla?
It can take anywhere from an hour to 12 hours to fully charge a Tesla – the time it takes varies by model and type of charger (wall outlet, high-powered wall outlet, wall connector, or Supercharger). Standard outlets are the slowest, providing about three miles of range per hour, while Superchargers are the fastest at about 30 minutes for a full charge. Somewhere in between are wall connectors, which take roughly eight to ten hours for a full charge, depending on the car model.
How much does it cost to charge a Tesla?
The cost to fully charge a Tesla also varies by model. For the four base models the company offers, here are the estimated charging costs for one full charge:
• Model 3: $9.62 to fully charge
• Model S: $18.29 to fully charge
• Model X: $18.30 to fully charge
• Model Y: $113.58 to fully charge
Learn more about Tesla charging costs (and how they compare to fueling a traditional car).
How much do Tesla cars cost?
A Tesla currently costs between $47,690-$129,990, depending on the model. At the more affordable end is the Model 3, and at the top end of the range is the Model S Plaid.
How far can a Tesla go on one charge?
Currently, the farthest you can go on one charge with a Tesla is 405 miles, which you get with the Model S.
If you're looking to lower your Tesla charging costs, the best way to do so is by going solar! On the EnergySage Marketplace, you can compare quotes from pre-screened installers to find a solar system that fits your needs at the right price. You can also explore other Tesla products, like a Tesla Powerwall for energy storage needs, on our Marketplace. If you're planning to charge an EV at your home, be sure to make a note in your account so solar panel installers can help you size your system accordingly – that way, you'll be able to power your car with renewable energy generated right at your home!
This article was previously published on September 5, 2022, and has been updated.