TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

Approaching a long neglected Roadster

Discussion in 'Roadster: Technical' started by wycolo, Sep 17, 2016.

  1. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    2,428
    Location:
    WY
    This is a 2010 Roadster 2.0 that has had no human contact for one year plus, depending on how quickly I can get there.

    It will have been 14 months since last charge (day 01). 12 months since plugged in (day 45) using 120v cable and extension cord at which time the screen said 'maintenance'. No further information except that 6 months ago it was still parked there. Car doors have been unlocked for 12 months. Could have lost 120v power at any time during the 12 months.

    Presumably the 12v battery is dead but it might be easier to apply a 10 amp test charge to it via the cigar lighter plug (with key ON?) before I attempt to remove the battery. Assuming a FAIL here, what is the best way to access and remove the 12v battery? Not even sure how to open frunk lid manually assuming that is the normal route to the battery - maybe release cables inside the cabin?

    Obviously we need a fully charged 12v battery for the system to turn the car ON. Then the dash will light up and we can see the state of the traction battery hoping that somehow the cells still retain some charge and can be salvaged. Or perhaps a message: 'bricked @time/date'. I will have a camera ready.
    --
     
  2. MileHighMotoring

    Joined:
    May 27, 2015
    Messages:
    790
    Location:
    Parker, CO
    I'd be far more worried about a bricked 53kWh battery ($20k) than the 12v which costs $50. If it's bricked, it cannot be recovered and must be entirely replaced. And sitting for 12 months without a charge, that's a distinct probability. In fact, I'd be shocked if it wasn't bricked.
     
  3. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2012
    Messages:
    2,722
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, California, United States
    #3 wiztecy, Sep 17, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2016
    Was the service plug pulled or APS inhibited activated? If not most likely you need a new ESS if the 110v charger and scheduled charge/storage mode charging failed.. There may be hope if that 110V stayed reliable and the system kept up with its checks... No way would I have trusted that 110v charger on my Roadster unless you wanted to just toss that pack.

    Best way to sleep the Roadster is to pull the ESS service plug or inhibit the ESS. It will stay dormant for some time, but as with every battery, life is lost while sitting though temperature swings.
     
  4. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2013
    Messages:
    10,399
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    That is a sad story. Naturally I want to know more details: how could a Roadster have been left to sit for over a year with no one checking on it?

    By "the screen said 'maintenance' " do you mean the screen warning saying it was time for the annual maintenance was displayed?

    As @wiztecy pointed out, it's very risky to leave a Roadster alone and dependent on the 110V charging cable working reliably for so long.

    I look forward to hearing your report as to its status.
     
  5. MLAUTO

    MLAUTO Member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2014
    Messages:
    315
    Location:
    SW Florida
    The ESS will last about 10 months if the disconnect plug was pulled with a full standard charge. So it is almost certain a brick and the ESS will need to be dropped. Connecting 12v will not give you any current data from the ESS if it is dead, any info shown will be from before it died, it might even be from the last time the key was on. The first brick I purchased stated 35 miles range when 12V was applied, and Tesla told me if the dash still showed 35 miles then the ESS still had a charge. I then bought the car on their wrong advice and ended up with a bunch of spare parts (which wasn't all that bad). The pack tested at less than 100V after I took it apart.
     
    • Helpful x 2
  6. hcsharp

    hcsharp Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,537
    Location:
    Vermont
    Good excuse to get a 3.0 battery upgrade.
     
    • Like x 2
    • Funny x 1
  7. MLAUTO

    MLAUTO Member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2014
    Messages:
    315
    Location:
    SW Florida
    One more thing- if it is that white one in Maryland, he does not have a clear title. He is trying to avoid paying sales tax and expects to reassign it in the dealer section, which is not allowed.
     
  8. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    2,428
    Location:
    WY
    > By "the screen said 'maintenance' " do you mean the screen warning saying it was time for the annual maintenance was displayed? [ecarfan]

    That makes sense!! I've been wondering this past year just what 'maintenance' might refer to, and hoping it might mean the battery had been disconnected in order to protect it as long as possible. No such luck; this was just a nag for annual service (sadface).


    > The ESS will last about 10 months if the disconnect plug was pulled with a full standard charge. [MLAUTO]

    I did not know of this plug of course but am curious to see just where it is. Never saw this discussed on TMC. And that explains why my 18650 flashlight cell here was at 3.4v after one calendar year of very little usage and then charged right back up to 4.0v.


    > No way would I have trusted that 110v charger on my Roadster unless you wanted to just toss that pack. [wiztecy]

    That is how I routinely plugged in the Roadster when away on trips since the MS would at the same time be plugged into the 40A EVSE. With a full Standard Charge the Roadster could last for over 3 weeks even if the 120v cable GFI'd out the next day. The MS likewise could cycle off for some reason and after 10 days be in jeopardy, but that was the best I could do. Actually a few times I gave it a 240 mile charge then set the charge level back to ~225 miles for maximum survival in case I'd be gone 10 days or more. 'Or more' in the present case has unfortunately turned into 14 months.


    So that ESS is bricked. Now I just have to worry about the MS whose EVSE was discovered OFF back in April and my neighbor on his last visit pushed the RESET button. But the likelihood of this Clipper Creek unit still providing a charge is miniscule. The Tesla chargers can reconnect themselves but once clicked off this evse just sits there awaiting a human reset.

    To add to my woes I went into the MS menus a month before my trip and turned internet access OFF (it had always been ON but I was responding to a security scare here on TMC). If I had left it alone Denver Service could have checked the car's status remotely, as could I since getting back online 6 months ago. Oh well.

    Thanks everyone for the good advice.
    --
     
  9. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2012
    Messages:
    2,722
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, California, United States
    ...with some luck, lots of it, you're 110v didn't crap out (the GFCI portion fails on those things, hence why I don't trust them) and the line voltage stayed on. You never know unless you test it out. It sounded like you didn't know if it had juice or not, correct? I'd still go with the plan of trying to get it up and running by replacing the 12v battery. You may be able to pull voltage from the back back by the PEM access cover if you know what you're doing with a multimeter without needing to install the 12v cell.

    The Model S has some cushion since Tesla wanted to address the bricking Roadster issue in the past and give people confidence if these cars are left unattended. Really a design flaw in the beginning for that they didn't do this with the Roadster.... But the Model S will go into a deep sleep which prevents vampire drain that runs down the cells as well as other things that gobble energy. I believe 3 months was the time it could live, I don't know the exact number here, but it was good insurance to recover the pack in most cases. I don't think it was a year, but if your breaker cut in the end it'll you hope in that case.

    Good luck and hope things turn out well when you do physically check them out.
     
  10. MLAUTO

    MLAUTO Member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2014
    Messages:
    315
    Location:
    SW Florida
    If it's a brick and ends up for sale, let me know.
     
  11. ModelX

    ModelX Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2012
    Messages:
    923
    Location:
    Orem, Utah
    Wishing you the best of luck! Let us know what you find out.
     
  12. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    2,428
    Location:
    WY
    > If it's a brick and ends up for sale, let me know. [MLAUTO]

    The brick or the car? For the 3.0 battery upgrade I think they expect my complete unmolested core.

    If they aren't strict about this it might be fun to extract any usable cells and either use them for an off grid project or put them back in usable strings, i.e. a ~6kwh Roadster pack that could only go seven miles or so max. Then I could continue to drive it to the PO, 6 miles round trip, which is the majority of all trips I ever made with it anyway. It would feel right at home and perhaps improve over time.

    Has anyone worked on a Roadster batt? I don't think I've ever seen one opened up; I have no idea of the cell structure or layout except that it is thick and vertical.
    --
     
  13. spaceballs

    spaceballs Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2013
    Messages:
    538
    Location:
    Sammamish
    I've worked on my roadster batteries before, it's a pain to get the ESS out and back in though as you need two post lift, custom lift adapters, plus a hydraulic lift table.

    Depending on how low the cells get I've been fully able to recover a ESS from what the car considers a bricked state with my own custom tools before. Hoping your ESS still has enough power to wake it self up and able to charge!
     
  14. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    2,428
    Location:
    WY
    Denver Service worker told me he can perform the out-in procedure in one hour. I assume they use a small electric fork lift.

    Question appears to be at what % does the car say: that's it, too many dead strings for us to handle!! But that leaves lots and lots of perfectly salvageable cells ripe for the taking.

    Any inside photos or sketches to share?
    --
     
  15. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2013
    Messages:
    10,399
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    Keep in mind that your bricked ESS may well be more valuable intact (to use as a trade in on a new 3.0 battery) than as salvageable parts.

    Once you determine your battery's state I suggest you contact Tesla and find out if they will take it in exchange for a 3.0 battery (plus a lot of money, of course :)
     
  16. petergrub

    petergrub Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2016
    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
    There's a 2.0/2.5 ESS pack and sheets on eBay if you're looking for pictures.
     
  17. hcsharp

    hcsharp Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,537
    Location:
    Vermont
    The Denver Service tech doesn't know what he's talking about. Are you sure he didn't say "...in one day"?

    It's very difficult to salvage or replace individual cells. They're potted in epoxy so you pretty much have to replace the entire sheet that contains any dead cells. That's what Tesla does.

    If you want to salvage your pack then you should look into doing what spaceballs did when he recovered one that was discharged below the level that the Roadster can safely charge. I don't advise working on the pack yourself unless you have a lot of experience and safety equipment for working with high voltage.
     
  18. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2012
    Messages:
    2,722
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, California, United States
    #18 wiztecy, Sep 20, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2016
    ...also cells that are "recovered" don't return to their previous healthy state. They become weak, will charge up as well as discharge faster compared to when they were healthy before they shutdown. Works for something to get around temporary and short-term, but not long-term.
     
  19. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    2,428
    Location:
    WY
    Definitely one hour. Talked to him for a bit standing next to the fresh batt in crate that he was all set to install. This guy is a treasure what with being there, apparently, from day one and getting dibs on the Roadster jobs. When I get to that Shop he will be the first one I'll look for, assuming I can poke around the bays first. Tesla's listed time is something like 3 out and 3 in (from memory) according to him but that allowance is for first timers.

    Roadster cells being different from MS cells: As I said I've not ever seen any detail about the Roadster batt, only MS. And that being mostly from @jehugarcia on UTube who had good luck salvaging 'MS' cells and getting them back to 'full service', those being out of a Smarty Car in fact.
    Talking with both HQ Service and Denver Service it definitely appears to be the case that no deal for a new 3.0 Batt upgrade is possible if I open up my ESS. So my option here is either the 29k upgrade or have Gruber-EV install a used-good ESS. Thanx to @petergrub for that tip.
    --
     
  20. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2013
    Messages:
    10,399
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    Don't you have a third choice: have Tesla install an original style used ESS? Or does Tesla no longer offer that?

    Of the two choices you pose, the first seems clearly the best to me.
     

Share This Page