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A mouse ate my Tesla

I've had ongoing rodent problems (SoCal, San Diego County); something chewing through the cables that come from the undercarriage innards to the wheels, rendering advanced systems offline. Multiple visits to Tesla for repairs, first was gratis, 2nd and 3rd cost me money, but never as bad a bill as yours. Now I regularly wipe all exposed cables with Peppermint oil and have the ultrasonic flashing rodent box thingy on every night. Haven't had anymore problems (knock on wood).
 
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.
I know your Model Y wasn't a primary target (unless the mouse was looking for a synthetic high), but it is probably a good time to clean out your garage of ALL your easy-to-get-to food snacks & secure your food staples (if they're shelved on some unenclosed storage racks or cabinets)...
 
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Re: "Some say that the scent of Irish Spring soap will also repel rodents."
funny thing: my wife put Irish Spring in socks under the deck to repel rodents. so of course it just stunk of Irish Spring. Rodents chewed through the socks and ate the Irish Spring. I figure they LOVE Irish Spring and put out the rumour that they don't just to get their supply.

RE: Have had ICE cars for 22 years in same driveway without a problem.
My sister-in-law lives close to you on Saturna Island. Rodents have nested in and wrecked her Mercedes several times. Parked outside.
 
Rodents need to chew. My girlfriend's garden hose was chewed to bits one night by raccoons. I sprayed her new hoses with Windex - it's been at least three years - no more chewing. There are still plenty of raccoons around and whatever I put on must still be there.
The thing about Windex is it's got ammonia in it, ammonia is a Base (opposite of acid), when it's dry it's inert, get it wet it's slippery and burns (if it's in your mouth). And whatever it smells like dry they won't even nibble. These hoses have been left our for the three years, rain, water, dirt.
Maybe Tesla should ammonia spritz the hoses after installation. I think you could even just spray a bit around the outside without having to jack up the car.
 
A decade ago, our BMW X5 had some wires chewed and maybe a hose weakened. The electronic thingies are useless once the rats/mice have made a home or found a spot they like. I ended up putting one of those electric rat zappers under the hood of the car (which I left slightly ajar to remind me to remove it before driving!). We caught a few mice and then one day caught a big rat. After that, no more damage.
 
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.
Had a friend that had the same problem with his Mercedes.

The mechanic told him the hoses casings were made from nut shells which attracts rodents. Wonder if Tesla is using the same hose manufacturer.

Cheers
 
Re: "Some say that the scent of Irish Spring soap will also repel rodents."
funny thing: my wife put Irish Spring in socks under the deck to repel rodents. so of course it just stunk of Irish Spring. Rodents chewed through the socks and ate the Irish Spring. I figure they LOVE Irish Spring and put out the rumour that they don't just to get their supply.

And here I thought Irish Spring would repel everything and everybody... our Canadian rats apparently are made of sterner stuff... :rolleyes:
 
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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.
My 2015 Model S was also attacked by a rodent soon after I bought it. The car arrived during winter so the problem wasn't discovered until summer when it dawned on me that my Model S didn't have bad air conditioning, it had no air conditioning. A rat had built a nest in a similar spot in the Model S and had bitten through a cable supplying power to the aircon. I've wrapped all exposed cables in stainless steel wool, it breaks their teeth so it's a good deterrant
 
This happened to my model 3 too last month here in Frisco TX. What is really really strange is that the exact same issue happened to my friend's model 3 who lives a mile away from my house a day after it occurred on my car. What are the odds. Both of us had to get our cars towed to Plano service center and both had to pay $316.26 each for the repair.
 

StealthP3D

Well-Known Member
Dec 12, 2018
12,218
123,595
Maple Falls, WA
Rodents shredded the sound/heat insulation on the engine side of the firewall in my 2000 Volvo S80 T6. They also liked to get up on that nice warm engine on cold nights and leave their little droppings up there to develop a wonderful smell the next time the engine was run.

I decided this wasn't going to happen to our Tesla Model 3's so I put a single rodent bait feeder near the cars and they eat the poison bait instead of the cars! No problems since. I don't like to poison animals (even if they are rats) but having them eat your car and leaving their potentially disease-ridden droppings everywhere is even more distressing.
 
We have put Irish spring soap in our RV and it works great at keeping out vermin. You have to put multiple bars throughout though.

Service centers vary a lot depending locations and this is no different than any other car manufacturer. Mine in KC has been fantastic and easy to work with. Parts issues are also similar with other car manufactures. People's expectation of Tesla is unrealistic sometimes as BMW, Mercedes and any other car manufacture all have similar issues.
 
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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 don't know where you live. But anyone living in the deserts of Southern California, Arizona, Nevada, or New Mexico is familiar with the packrat's love of nesting inside cars left out of garages, during which they love to chew rubber hoses and wires. Some types of cars actually have a soy product in their rubber, making them irresistible.

My wife is from southern Arizona, so she insisted that when we recently built our house in the desert, that we had to spend the extra money for a garage. Her brother, with an open carport, trapped many dozens of packrats before giving up.

We would never park my Tesla or Prius overnight outside in the open.

But when others visit us, or when we have to park our non-EV cars outside, we deploy a blinking light called a rid-a-rat inside the engine compartment. It attaches magnetically to your hood, and blinks every 30 sec or so, apparently annoying the hell out of the rat.

I doubt that smells could protect you. But I did find that a realistic fake snake helped keep them out of an irrigation box.

Good luck
 
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An update on my earlier report that a rodent - I found a dead mouse in the driveway -

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.

I had a mouse in my glove box so now use Altoid candy metal boxes with holes poked in the top and cotton balls soaked in peppermint oil. Works well. Use them in the glove box and trunks. Use them all around my house, shop and in my Highlander. And have traps with nut butter and a bit of dried cranberry. They pretty much stay away now! Remember to refresh the peppermint oil every 4-6 weeks!
 
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Do we really need this annoyance?
 
Had it happen to a Honda Odyssey (the day we were leaving for a 12 hour trip - some vermin chewed the ABS sensor). 2 BMWs, and a VW. With a BMW Z4, I was getting in the car and I could hear some weird noise from the engine compartment. It was right after a rain. I popped the hood and the most foul, cruel, and bad tempered rabbit I’ve ever set eyes upon was staring through my soul. There was a standoff, and then the bastard jumped off and managed to scratch the front fender down to the primer with his claws during his flee. I put in one of those strobe light ultrasonic annoyance systems in the MY, but I’m fully expecting to see a rave next time I pop the frunk.
 
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