Home » Tesla Smoking While Charging? (DO THIS IMMEDIATELY!)

Tesla Smoking While Charging? (DO THIS IMMEDIATELY!)

You might be concerned if you notice your Tesla smoking while charging, and you are right to be concerned. However, in some cases, this is a normal phenomenon.

In some cases, this is a normal thing and you shouldn’t be worried. In some other cases, you need to stop charging immediately and seek for help.

In this guide, I will discuss:

  • The common causes of smoking in Tesla while charging
  • How to recognize the type of smoke – when to be worried and when to not be worried
  • Safety measures, insights and what to do depending on what you see

If that sounds good, let’s dive right in!

Tesla Smoking While Charging: Common Causes

There are various causes of smoking in Tesla while charging.

1. Overcharging and Overheating

The charging process of a Tesla can sometimes cause the battery to heat up. This increased heat may lead to overcharging and overheating of the battery, resulting in smoke emission.

It’s essential to monitor your Tesla’s charging process and ensure it doesn’t overheat to prevent this issue.

2. Battery Problems

An overcharged or damaged battery can be another reason why your Tesla smokes while charging. The breakdown of the battery’s chemicals due to excess heat may cause smoke release.

To avoid battery-related problems, always ensure the battery is in good condition and properly maintained.

Tesla emits smoke while using supercharger

3. Faulty Charger

A faulty charger can also lead to your Tesla smoking while charging. A malfunctioning charger may not provide the correct voltage or current, causing the batteries to overcharge or overheat.

If you suspect charging issues, consider checking your charger and replacing it if necessary.

4. Electrical Short

An electrical short in your Tesla’s charging system can cause smoking while charging. Shorts can result from damaged wiring, connectors, or other electrical components.

Inspecting your vehicle’s electrical system and addressing any issues can help prevent smoking caused by electrical shorts.

Recognizing Types of Smoke in Tesla

When you notice smoke coming from your Tesla while charging, it’s important to identify the type of smoke.

In this section, we will cover three types: white smoke and steam, water vapor, and chemical-based smoke.

1. White Smoke and Steam

White smoke and steam can sometimes be seen coming from the front wheel arches, headlights, frunk, and front bumper of your Tesla while it’s charging especially during cold weather. It usually lasts for a few minutes before it stops, so there’s no need to panic.

The steam is actually produced due to the warmth created by the battery and the cold air. This may lead to condensation, resulting in steam formation as the air becomes saturated with water vapor.

2. Water Vapor

Water vapor is another possible cause of smoke seen while charging your Tesla especially with a supercharger. During the charging process, the battery warms up, resulting in humidity from the cold air forming condensation on the battery pack and turning into water droplets.

Under these circumstances, the rapid charging process accelerates the evaporation, causing the appearance of white smoke or steam in the cooler air. This cloudy or misty appearance might be confused with white smoke.

Tesla emits white smoke while charging with supercharger

This type of smoke is also not a cause for concern, as it’s simply a natural reaction to the changing temperature conditions.

Ini addition, Tesla’s vehicles are equipped with various safety features, one of which is the thermal monitoring system, which can detect changes in temperature and protect the batteries during charging.

In cases where white smoke is present, it is usually just water vapor and not indicative of a more severe issue.

3. Chemical-Based Smoke

Chemical-based smoke can potentially be a more serious issue. Certain conditions, like a faulty charger or an electrical short, might produce chemical-based smoke with a distinctive odor.

This type of smoke is typically thicker in appearance, and could be accompanied by signs of overheating such as a burning smell.

If you notice this kind of smoke and suspect that it may be chemical-based, it’s important to cease charging immediately and consult a professional to ensure the safety of your vehicle.

Insights from Tesla Owners, Technicians & Tesla Service Center

Let’s look at some of the insights from many Tesla owners and technicians.

Experiences of Model 3 & Model Y Owners

Many Model 3 and Model & owners have occasionally noticed white “smoke” coming from their vehicle while charging. As a Model 3 or Model Y owner, you might come across this phenomenon when using a Supercharger, but it’s generally not something to be alarmed about.

In most cases, this smoke is actually steam, resulting from water evaporating from a wet or moist surface due to rapid charging, causing condensation in the cooler air. This is especially common during cold weather with high humidity or damp conditions.

However, if you find that the “smoke” has a strange odor or is becoming excessive, there might be a more significant issue at hand. In such cases, it’s recommended to reach out to Tesla support or a mobile technician if this occurs with your car.

Advice from Tesla Technicians

Tesla technicians are aware of cars releasing “smoke” while charging, and they maintain that this is sometimes a normal occurrence. However, excessive smoke or an unusual smell may warrant further investigation.

Aging batteries or those that have experienced extensive use might generate more heat and therefore more “smoke” during the charging process. In these cases, consult with a Tesla technician to evaluate the condition of your battery and ensure it’s not a safety concern.

Tesla Service Center Reports

Tesla Service Centers have dealt with cases where smoke has been reported during charging. They have often determined the cause of the smoke and provided necessary fixes.

For instance, there has been a case where the Service Center found the problem to be caused by an issue with the vehicle’s cooling system. The problem was resolved by repairing the cooling system, which then allowed the car to charge without any further smoke.


When charging, the battery can heat up, which might cause the appearance of smoke due to evaporation or steam forming from moisture. This usually occurs during cold ambient temperatures and humid or damp conditions.

However, if you notice excessive smoke or a strange odor, it could indicate an issue. Your Tesla’s battery may overheat, causing the chemicals to break down and release smoke.

In these scenarios, it’s essential to stop charging immediately and get in touch with Tesla support to investigate the matter and avoid potential safety hazards.

When in doubt about the safety of your Tesla, always err on the side of caution and consult with a Tesla mobile technician or support team to troubleshoot and resolve any issues related to smoke emissions during charging.

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