Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register

A mouse ate my Tesla

Fidalgo

Member
Jun 12, 2020
38
42
Anacortes, WA
My 5-month-old Tesla Y started going haywire when it lost its battery coolant. Turns out that mice had nested behind the Frunk and chewed through the coolant hose. I could drive the car to the Service Center, but non-warranty repair is a twenty dollar hose and more than $700 in labor, plus two weeks! (No parts, so have to be ordered. Sigh.) Apparently this is not uncommon, especially with electric cars. Have had ICE cars for 22 years in same driveway without a problem. Internet theories:
- Absence of a noisy, hot combustion engine encourages rodent nesting.
- EV battery warming when parked encourages rodent nesting.
- Soy-based wire insulation, which is more recyclable, smells like catnip to mice. Present in most cars these days, EV or not.
- Can happen to any car, EV or not.

Wonder if anyone else has had this problem and found a solution? Thinking of trying to stick rodent-repelling odor bag ("Fresh Cab") in the behind-frunk area where washer fluid is.
 

jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
3,207
3,181
Maryland
You may have better luck parking your vehicle inside a garage. (LPT: Don't store pet food in the garage.) Usually rodents eat, chew through wire harness insulation; your Model Y is the first I have heard of a rodent munching on a coolant line.

According to the all knowing, all seeing interwebs the most effective way to keep mice out of your car is with mint: a scent that naturally repels the rodent. Of all the mint-emitting products on the market, a clean and effective solution is Victor® Scent-Away™ Natural Mouse and Rat Repellent Packs™.

Some say that the scent of Irish Spring soap will also repel rodents.
 
Last edited:

Silicon Desert

Active Member
Oct 1, 2018
3,598
3,493
Sparks NV / GF 1
Right, it is not just an issue with EV cars. Newer ICE cars have the same problems because of use of cheaper materials that rats love to chew.
What caught my attention is a $700 labor charge. WOW.
 

qdeathstar

Completely Serious
May 17, 2019
3,417
2,432
VB
My 5-month-old Tesla Y started going haywire when it lost its battery coolant. Turns out that mice had nested behind the Frunk and chewed through the coolant hose. I could drive the car to the Service Center, but non-warranty repair is a twenty dollar hose and more than $700 in labor, plus two weeks! (No parts, so have to be ordered. Sigh.) Apparently this is not uncommon, especially with electric cars. Have had ICE cars for 22 years in same driveway without a problem. Internet theories:
- Absence of a noisy, hot combustion engine encourages rodent nesting.
- EV battery warming when parked encourages rodent nesting.
- Soy-based wire insulation, which is more recyclable, smells like catnip to mice. Present in most cars these days, EV or not.
- Can happen to any car, EV or not.

Wonder if anyone else has had this problem and found a solution? Thinking of trying to stick rodent-repelling odor bag ("Fresh Cab") in the behind-frunk area where washer fluid is.

I got a street cat to hang out. Only had rabies once
 

srlawren

Member
Aug 3, 2020
994
658
Vancouver, BC, Canada, Eh?
According to the all knowing, all seeing interwebs the most effective way to keep mice out of your car is with mint: a scent that naturally repels the rodent. Of all the mint-emitting products on the market, a clean and effective solution is Victor® Scent-Away™ Natural Mouse and Rat Repellent Packs™.

@jcanoe this is actually great news, since peppermint is one of my favorite aromas (and tastes). Silly rodents don't know what they're missing!
 
  • Funny
Reactions: RubberToe and ArtK

Fidalgo

Member
Jun 12, 2020
38
42
Anacortes, WA
You may have better luck parking your vehicle inside a garage. (LPT: Don't store pet food in the garage.) Usually rodents eat, chew through wire harness insulation; your Model Y is the first I have heard of a rodent munching on a coolant line.

According to the all knowing, all seeing interwebs the most effective way to keep mice out of your car is with mint: a scent that naturally repels the rodent. Of all the mint-emitting products on the market, a clean and effective solution is Victor® Scent-Away™ Natural Mouse and Rat Repellent Packs™.

Some say that the scent of Irish Spring soap will also repel rodents.
Thanks for this!
 

jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
3,207
3,181
Maryland
@jcanoe this is actually great news, since peppermint is one of my favorite aromas (and tastes). Silly rodents don't know what they're missing!
Mint extract is a mixture of spearmint and peppermint, whereas peppermint extract is just that. Mint brings a bright, bold flavor to recipes. On the savory side, spearmint is usually the mint of choice, however when it comes to sweet, peppermint is the herb of choice as it pairs well with chocolate and citrus flavors.
 
  • Informative
Reactions: qdeathstar

srlawren

Member
Aug 3, 2020
994
658
Vancouver, BC, Canada, Eh?
Mint extract is a mixture of spearmint and peppermint, whereas peppermint extract is just that. Mint brings a bright, bold flavor to recipes. On the savory side, spearmint is usually the mint of choice, however when it comes to sweet, peppermint is the herb of choice as it pairs well with chocolate and citrus flavors.

@jcanoe sure. Never been a spearmint fan but peppermint is the bestest and yes your pairings spot-on. It also is excellent as a peppermint mocha!
 

Watts_Up

Active Member
Mar 4, 2019
3,625
2,451
In a galaxy far, far away
Right, it is not just an issue with EV cars.
Newer ICE cars have the same problems because of use of cheaper materials that rats love to chew.
What caught my attention is a $700 labor charge. WOW.
I recently watched this video showing how to remove a Model 3 battery.
I noticed that there are (I believe) 18 hoses around the battery, and the access to them is not easy.
I think Tesla charge about $150 per hour labor, so about one person job for four to six hours
to inspect the hoses and replace the battery coolant?

 
  • Helpful
Reactions: Silicon Desert

laservet

Member
Mar 9, 2020
340
218
Williamsburg, Virginia
Mice chewed the wiring harness and into the HVAC ducts of my BMW, and that car spent half it's time in my garage, the other half of each day sitting in the parking lot in front of my office. Cost me over $400 for repairs.
 
  • Like
Reactions: hcdavis3

Souper72

Member
Jun 7, 2020
21
22
Portland
My 5-month-old Tesla Y started going haywire when it lost its battery coolant. Turns out that mice had nested behind the Frunk and chewed through the coolant hose. I could drive the car to the Service Center, but non-warranty repair is a twenty dollar hose and more than $700 in labor, plus two weeks! (No parts, so have to be ordered. Sigh.) Apparently this is not uncommon, especially with electric cars. Have had ICE cars for 22 years in same driveway without a problem. Internet theories:
- Absence of a noisy, hot combustion engine encourages rodent nesting.
- EV battery warming when parked encourages rodent nesting.
- Soy-based wire insulation, which is more recyclable, smells like catnip to mice. Present in most cars these days, EV or not.
- Can happen to any car, EV or not.

Wonder if anyone else has had this problem and found a solution? Thinking of trying to stick rodent-repelling odor bag ("Fresh Cab") in the behind-frunk area where washer fluid is.

MY 4 month old also had a coolant leak with two hoses on order, approaching two weeks. Not sure what caused it. Initial SC response was fitting not installed correctly at factory. I should know more when I hopefully pick it up next week.
 

artnalex

Member
May 31, 2020
212
141
Los Angeles
Approx. 10 yrs ago, my BMW X5 had rodent damage as well (chewed thru wiring). I used to park in driveway near an orange tree (which attracted rodents). Lesson learned.
 

Souper72

Member
Jun 7, 2020
21
22
Portland
MY 4 month old also had a coolant leak with two hoses on order, approaching two weeks. Not sure what caused it. Initial SC response was fitting not installed correctly at factory. I should know more when I hopefully pick it up next week.
Just picked up my car today. SC believes rodent knawed on coolant lines. Two lines needed to be replaced. Time to setup some traps in the garage.
 

Fidalgo

Member
Jun 12, 2020
38
42
Anacortes, WA
An update on my earlier report that a rodent - I found a dead mouse in the driveway - had chewed a hole in my battery coolant line, causing a warning on the screen that the Model Y needed service. Systems such as auto steer, music, navigation, heat, and the ability to charge began to fail. When I drove the 65 miles to the Service Center in Lynnwood, WA, the car limiting the freeway speed to 58 mph. Fortunately, I had enough range.

My Service experience was mixed. First, they want you to text through your phone, which was different than other car dealers but I got used to it. The initial appointment was two weeks away, however, by which time the car would have been dead. So I ended up calling, using the phone tree to reach service, and they agreed I needed to drive in while I could. They had to order a hose (seemed like it should have been in stock), then re-order because they got the wrong one, and then order a different one as well. Total fix time was 16 days but because it was finished late Friday and they are closed weekends, I got the car back in 19 days. Way too long, but they kept me updated. Tesla needs more SCs.

Cost (because the damage isn't covered by warranty) was $1,142.58, with insurance probably covering all but the $250 deductible. Tesla provided a loaner Chevy Malibu through a nearby Enterprise lot, which made me appreciate my Y!

So, rodent damage is a headache to be avoided. At Tesla's advice, I put dryer sheets sprayed with peppermint in the mechanical area behind the trunk. I've also installed a battery operated rodent repellent: lights and sound. Hope they help.
 

wycolo

Active Member
May 16, 2012
3,095
429
WA & WY
Inexcusable that the MY, or any newish Tesla has rubber hoses exposed to rodent damage. At the least all unenclosed hoses should be covered with slip-over metal braid. I would email Elon about this, seriously.

My 2012 MS had ground squirrels in the frunk, also they chewed into AC compressor harness ($136-US). My Subaru got all washer hoses ruined. Why they don't add rodent pukeola to the rubber mix, why??

Aloha from Guemes.
--
 

Products we're discussing on TMC...

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top