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2012 MS Keyfob Detection Issues

Hoping someone can shed some light on the issue I'm having with my 2012 S:

Borderline constant keyfob not detected with key in pocket.
If approaching from the front of the car, handles don't present, but approaching from the rear does.

While in the car fob frequently isn't detected unless I put the key toward the rear seat.

Happens with both fobs, replaced batteries in both.

Is there a front fob sensor that may be faulty that someone could direct me to?
 

DerbyDave

Active Member
Jul 2, 2020
1,697
974
Kentucky
You can check to see if the key fob sensor on the car is working even if you have a failing or failed battery. The following is from:

First Models

Model S open early
In the earliest versions of the Model S, the back of key fob is to be placed against the passenger side front fender, somewhat below and to the right of the emblem, as shown in the image. When the fob is recognized, the door handles will extend as they do normally.

The instructions in newer models note that if the car does not respond, first try repositioning the fob. Failing that, try removing the dead battery from the fob and go through the process again. This last bit really shouldn’t be necessary.

Note that it will take several seconds for the car to recognize the fob.

Newer Models

Tesla Wiper Spot
The concept is the same in the newer Model S, but the location is changed. However, it remains on the passenger side. Place the key fob near the base of the passenger side windshield wiper. The image to the right shows the exact spot that worked in the model we tested, and we tried several. Then press the driver’s door handle. The handles will extend if it is recognized, but it took a full 20 seconds in the car we tested. Try repositioning the fob if this fails. If it continues not to be recognized, try removing the battery and go back through the process.

Be patient – it took a full 20 seconds for the car to recognize the fob in the model we tested!
 
You can check to see if the key fob sensor on the car is working even if you have a failing or failed battery. The following is from:

First Models

Model S open early
In the earliest versions of the Model S, the back of key fob is to be placed against the passenger side front fender, somewhat below and to the right of the emblem, as shown in the image. When the fob is recognized, the door handles will extend as they do normally.

The instructions in newer models note that if the car does not respond, first try repositioning the fob. Failing that, try removing the dead battery from the fob and go through the process again. This last bit really shouldn’t be necessary.

Note that it will take several seconds for the car to recognize the fob.

Newer Models

Tesla Wiper Spot
The concept is the same in the newer Model S, but the location is changed. However, it remains on the passenger side. Place the key fob near the base of the passenger side windshield wiper. The image to the right shows the exact spot that worked in the model we tested, and we tried several. Then press the driver’s door handle. The handles will extend if it is recognized, but it took a full 20 seconds in the car we tested. Try repositioning the fob if this fails. If it continues not to be recognized, try removing the battery and go back through the process.

Be patient – it took a full 20 seconds for the car to recognize the fob in the model we tested!
I appreciate the info, I'll look in to a few of those areas.
 

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