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Tesla owners reveal how they mine for Bitcoin and Ethereum with the electric car's battery and GPU

A Tesla Model 3 used for mining crypto (image: Siraj Raval)
A Tesla Model 3 used for mining crypto (image: Siraj Raval)
A couple of enterprising Tesla owners have been using their electric cars to mine for cryptocurrencies or privacy tokens like Monero. According to them, the most profitable way to mine for crypto with a Tesla is to use a hacked firmware and hook graphics processing units directly to the electric motor. One Tesla Model 3 owner reveals that this way he was able to net up to $800 a month in Ethereum when the cryptocurrency was at its record price.

Teslas, or any fully electric car, for that matter, are basically a giant computer on wheels, thought one Model 3 owner, and decided he can use the EV to mine crypto. Siraj Raval used every trick in the mining book - from connecting video cards to Tesla's battery, through hooking up their Apple Mac mini M1 to the 12V socket. He says that he was able to net $800/month in Ethereum's price heyday this way. According to him, the most profitable way to mine for crypto with a Tesla car is to use "a mix of hacking into Tesla’s internal computer, plus plugging GPUs directly into the car’s electric motor."

Another Tesla owner, Chris Allessi, has gone even further. Since he got his Tesla before January 2017, he is entitled to a lifetime of superfast charging for the EV, and has used the free electricity from the car's battery to dig for Bitcoin with a Bitmain Antminer S9 directly. Alternatively, he has also tried hacking the Tesla's firmware and mining via the car's screen and browser by setting up a webpage that lets him dig for the Monero privacy token. "It was no big deal," comments Alessi - Wisconsin’s first electric car dealer and a tinkerer by nature - "I could run the mining program within the browser."

How much did he make this way with his Tesla? A $10 worth of bitcoin for 60 hours as Tesla's GPU has a rather paltry 10 MH/s hashrate. Siraj Raval fared better, as he buys his GPUs used off eBay, mines for about 20 hours a day, and stakes the crypto with an exchange that gives him a good interest rate. This way he was able to net $400 to $800 a month while mining for crypto with his Tesla Model 3 last year. Still, according to Mr. Alessi, the whole Tesla Bitcoin mining exercise is just a proof of concept and not worth it in the long run:

Why would you want to put that kind of wear and tear on a $40,000 to $100,000 car? Did it work? Yes. Did it mine anything worthwhile to be able to be profitable in any way, shape, or form? No.

Get the AntMiner L3+ 500MH/s Litecoin Miner on Amazon

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Daniel Zlatev
Daniel Zlatev - Tech Writer - 259 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2021
Wooed by tech since the industrial espionage of Apple computers and the times of pixelized Nintendos, Daniel went and opened a gaming club when personal computers and consoles were still an expensive rarity. Nowadays, fascination is not with specs and speed but rather the lifestyle that computers in our pocket, house, and car have shoehorned us in, from the infinite scroll and the privacy hazards to authenticating every bit and move of our existence.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2022 01 > Tesla owners reveal how they mine for Bitcoin and Ethereum with the electric car's battery and GPU
Daniel Zlatev, 2022-01- 9 (Update: 2022-01- 9)