Electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla Motors Inc. has announced it will send out replacement wall charger adapters to customers following an investigation into a garage fire involving a Tesla Model S sedan and its wall-mounted charging system last month.
Investigators of the Nov. 15 Irvine, Calif. fire said in a report that the Tesla-supplied charging system or the connection at the electricity panel on the wall of the garage could have caused the fire.
“The fire occurred as a result of an electrical failure in the charging system for an electric vehicle,” the Orange County Fire Authority said in its report.
The report emphasizes that the cause of the fire is unclear, but suggests “the most probable cause of this fire is a high resistance connection at the wall socket or the Universal Mobile Connector from the Tesla charging system,” which was plugged into a 240-volt wall socket.
Tesla maintains that the fire was not related to the vehicle or its charging system.
“We looked into the incident,” Tesla spokeswoman Liz Jarvis-Shean said. “We can say it absolutely was not the car, the battery or the charging electronics.”
“The cable was fine on the vehicle side. All the damage was on the wall side. A review of the car’s logs showed that the battery had been charging normally, and there were no fluctuations in temperature or malfunctions within the battery or the charge electronics.”
According to Tesla CEO Elon Musk, fires and overheating adapters are “very rare events, but occasionally the wiring isn’t done right.”
“We want people to have absolute comfort, so we’re going to be providing them with an upgraded adapter,” he said of the company’s plan to mail out wall charger adapters in an interview with Bloomberg. The new adapters will reportedly include a thermal fuse that will shut off if it gets too hot.
The garage fire is not related to several road fires involving Tesla Model S sedans that took place earlier last year.