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Brake failed and almost crashed

Black306

Member
Oct 14, 2019
592
854
Sacramento
Nobody has a borescope or endoscope they can poke down there and snap some photos of their steering rack? I don't have a Model 3 (waitlist!) so I cannot be of assistance :(

I'm curious what is supposed to be there to prevent the contact/rubbing.
I’ve got one. Already planning to check my car later. 😁 Haven’t tried taking snap shots with it though; it’s not a WiFi/BT model.
 
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Fernand

Active Member
Mar 22, 2019
1,558
1,566
Northern california
The thing that bothers me is the gradual realization that my Tesla is not entirely ... virtual. There are mechanical thingies, and pipes & hoses, and gaskets and bolts.

Now, if you follow Sandy Munro's teardowns, compared to say an Audi or Mach-e Mustang, Tesla vastly reduced the parts count, and the fewer parts, the fewer problems. And they keep eliminating more all the time. That's one way a 2021 is better than a 2018. But it's not entirely like in my initial dreams, with just a big battery, a few cables, motor(s) and computers. I was confident I'd drive my Model 3 "forever". Maybe a little less confident now. And I'll try out the emergency braking ;)
 

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
2,114
1,500
East Bay NorCal
The thing that bothers me is the gradual realization that my Tesla is not entirely ... virtual. There are mechanical thingies, and pipes & hoses, and gaskets and bolts.

Now, if you follow Sandy Munro's teardowns, compared to say an Audi or Mach-e Mustang, Tesla vastly reduced the parts count, and the fewer parts, the fewer problems. And they keep eliminating more all the time. That's one way a 2021 is better than a 2018. But it's not entirely like in my initial dreams, with just a big battery, a few cables, motor(s) and computers. I was confident I'd drive my Model 3 "forever". Maybe a little less confident now. And I'll try out the emergency braking ;)


IMO, the bill of material (BOM) on a Tesla is way less than even the simplest of ICE vehicles.

The obvious lack of a normal engine, clutch/torque-converter, transmission, differential (there is still a CV though) obliterates 90% of the parts that commonly fail/wear on ICE vehicles.

But also consider that...
The entire emissions system is gone...
the HVAC system is way simpler (especially with the heat pump)...
Even without a mega-casting the chassis is still pretty good compared to many competitor vehicles...
There are zero relays (I think... correct me if I'm wrong) and fuses...
Interior controls is just one monster touch screen instead of foddley knobs, momentary buttons, and levers. Hell there isn't even an ignition switch.

So yes, you still have issues with ball joints, suspension, some cooling hoses, doors, windows, steering rack, active and passive safety, tires and unfortunately this brake line problem. But a Tesla Model is soooo much simpler. And presumably easier to own in the long-run. Ironically the worst part of a Model X is the goofy-azz doors, which is a complexity that probably doesn't need to exist except Elon wants the X to be coooooooool.

The battery is the looming elephant-sized-repair, but so far the battery has proven to be fairly reliable across the model lines. Like I'm not seeing motor, inverter, and other crazy-weird EV-specific repairs in people's experiences so far. It's mostly nasty panel gaps and rattles... and in this once case a busted brake line.
 

snikt

Member
May 14, 2021
250
359
Denver, CO
The thing that bothers me is the gradual realization that my Tesla is not entirely ... virtual. There are mechanical thingies, and pipes & hoses, and gaskets and bolts.

Now, if you follow Sandy Munro's teardowns, compared to say an Audi or Mach-e Mustang, Tesla vastly reduced the parts count, and the fewer parts, the fewer problems. And they keep eliminating more all the time. That's one way a 2021 is better than a 2018. But it's not entirely like in my initial dreams, with just a big battery, a few cables, motor(s) and computers. I was confident I'd drive my Model 3 "forever". Maybe a little less confident now. And I'll try out the emergency braking ;)

It is still a car, it has thousands of parts. A brake system, suspension, HVAC system, powertrain, charging and battery stuff, etc..

Probably way less than any ICE vehicle though
 
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Oct 31, 2019
272
403
Murica
Doing this through my phone…so excuse the formatting.

I believe folks are correct - the brake line was rubbing on the steering shaft. On my car, there’s a black plastic holder for the gang of brake lines. It is “pressed” into a hole in the uninody- similar to any regular ole plastic wire loom holder in all automobiles.

Mine was actually a quarter of the way out…and I pushed it back in.

You can see it in the attached photos.


1D9AD6ED-72FE-4757-A8CF-21C9F5CFC0FC.jpeg4F5FEF41-19AA-434D-976C-C14D142ADFD7.jpeg55A70FAE-3542-494E-BB9E-76935DF2E59A.jpegED00C1AB-76EA-4C1A-B8D6-F465F5A30678.jpegA4C3993A-D3C5-402E-BF20-BA57D7783B7B.jpegE9A7295E-26F6-4FF6-9ECE-B5F97770B398.jpeg

You can see it in the attached photos.
 

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
2,114
1,500
East Bay NorCal
Doing this through my phone…so excuse the formatting.

I believe folks are correct - the brake line was rubbing on the steering shaft. On my car, there’s a black plastic holder for the gang of brake lines. It is “pressed” into a hole in the uninody- similar to any regular ole plastic wire loom holder in all automobiles.

Mine was actually a quarter of the way out…and I pushed it back in.

You can see it in the attached photos.


View attachment 687438View attachment 687439View attachment 687440View attachment 687441View attachment 687442View attachment 687443

You can see it in the attached photos.


Do you think that without the black plastic clip, the brake line's natural tension running through the vehicle will pull it toward the steering column?

1627075145538.png
 

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
2,114
1,500
East Bay NorCal
Recall betting pool?


Lol depends on whether someone will Tweet Elon about this.

The good (or bad depending on POV) of this situation is Juno didn't actually hit anything. So there is no traffic incident, no injury, no death, no damaged property, and nothing saved on the event data recorder. So the likelihood NHTSA investigates is very low since people evidenced in this thread that some think brake failures are "normal".

But maybe a chassis/steering engineer at Tesla will look into this and assess whether it was a one-off weird situation with a lot of bad things leading to Juno's outcome. Or maybe every time that plastic clip fails, the result is a reasonable chance of rubbing against the steering column. In this latter case, Tesla may implement a voluntary recall in advance of any known injuries. I don't know Tesla's track record for pre-emptive recalls, but most automakers wait for some death and liability potential before they do anything that could be costly.
 
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Oct 31, 2019
272
403
Murica
Do you think that without the black plastic clip, the brake line's natural tension running through the vehicle will pull it toward the steering column?

View attachment 687457
I looked at it for a little bit longer - answer is no.

The distribution block where the 4lines come out of is secured to the unibody. I applied pressure left and right, and it re-centered itself to original position.

Something else happened to OP’s for the line to be rubbing. Considering Tesla changes things on the fly, who knows how it is secured in OPs car.

For reference, the picture the OP shared appears to be taken from underneath the vehicle. I didn’t track the lines past the steering column, and I’m not going to remove the under tray, but it’s possible the problem could be how the line is secured on the other side (in OP’s car) towards the firewall (is it still called a “firewall” in a Tesla? :p ).
 

holeydonut

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
2,114
1,500
East Bay NorCal
I looked at it for a little bit longer - answer is no.

The distribution block where the 4lines come out of is secured to the unibody. I applied pressure left and right, and it re-centered itself to original position.

Something else happened to OP’s for the line to be rubbing. Considering Tesla changes things on the fly, who knows how it is secured in OPs car.

For reference, the picture the OP shared appears to be taken from underneath the vehicle. I didn’t track the lines past the steering column, and I’m not going to remove the under tray, but it’s possible the problem could be how the line is secured on the other side (in OP’s car) towards the firewall).

Thanks for taking the extra time to investigate! TMC and its users are awesome!

Yeah, it stands to reason if the line wasn't secured to the firewall (or as every auto engineer will want to correct me... a cross-car beam)... then there was no way that plastic clip was going to stay in place and prevent the rubbing. I guess I'll add this to the list of things to check when I take delivery of the Model 3...
 
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Fernand

Active Member
Mar 22, 2019
1,558
1,566
Northern california
The close-ups are great. But WHERE is this?

Now as to brake failure, this is the only one reported? Other than the fake stuff in China. Of course it was a most disturbing failure. But I think we're getting paranoid.

I was at the Service Center, and a guy with a new Model Y was hassling them about a "gap" by the left headlight, it was maybe 1/16" or less off from ideal alignment. In fact, I'm not even sure it was off. Come on, folks. This is what happens when criticism gets out of hand. The guy read the forums, and started going over his car with a magnifying glass. Then Consumer Reports says that Teslas have all sorts of complaints, like that. Not good. These are mass-produced machines. Want that angelic touch? Try a Rolls Phantom.
 

Gauss Guzzler

Member
Dec 27, 2020
456
563
Thousand Oaks, California
Recall betting pool?
Keep in mind this is literally a one-in-a-million failure. Recalls are triggered when there are hundreds or thousands of failures per million car. Tesla will surely investigate this at the factory and may add an assembly step to check this or even update the clip if necessary.

I'd bet that someone yanked on that brake line, not only pulling it out of the clip but also bending it so severely that it was left with residual force pressing it against the steering column. Likely not a manufacturing defect so to speak.
 
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Daniel in SD

Well-Known Member
Jan 25, 2018
6,902
9,787
San Diego
Keep in mind this is literally a one-in-a-million failure. Recalls are triggered when there are hundreds or thousands of failures per million car. Tesla will surely investigate this at the factory and may add an assembly step to check this or even update the clip if necessary.

I'd bet that someone yanked on that brake line, not only pulling it out of the clip but also bending it so severely that it was left with residual force pressing it against the steering column. Likely not a manufacturing defect so to speak.
Could be, or there could be thousands of cars with the brake line rubbing against the steering column. I've seen enough automative recalls to be paranoid. haha.
My wild guess is that a factory worker mangled the line and installed it anyway. I think even a one-off error is still a manufacturing defect.
 
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Tranquil Rage

Member
Dec 14, 2020
44
74
Buffalo Butt
Do you think that without the black plastic clip, the brake line's natural tension running through the vehicle will pull it toward the steering column?

View attachment 687457

Yes, it's very likely that the inherent tension in the hard lines coupled with vibrations transmitted through the chassis will cause the lines to move without the retaining bracket. With this being a safety issue, it's also very likely that this has been escalated to Engineering and under investigation to identify whether it's a design/manufacturing defect. I wouldn't be surprised if a service campaign (at the very least) is issued to inspect that bracket. I'm going to inspect both of my Model 3s shortly to see if the bracket is unseated or missing.

Also, I hope that this demonstrates to some of the morons who questioned Junos earlier (I saw at least one post insinuating that he was a troll), that Tesla is not infallible and can have serious defects just like any other car. In engineering, we always try to foresee these types of failure modes and mitigate them, but sometimes flaws manifest themselves in the field and must be resolved/redesigned after the fact.
 
Oct 31, 2019
272
403
Murica
The close-ups are great. But WHERE is this?

Now as to brake failure, this is the only one reported? Other than the fake stuff in China. Of course it was a most disturbing failure. But I think we're getting paranoid.

I was at the Service Center, and a guy with a new Model Y was hassling them about a "gap" by the left headlight, it was maybe 1/16" or less off from ideal alignment. In fact, I'm not even sure it was off. Come on, folks. This is what happens when criticism gets out of hand. The guy read the forums, and started going over his car with a magnifying glass. Then Consumer Reports says that Teslas have all sorts of complaints, like that. Not good. These are mass-produced machines. Want that angelic touch? Try a Rolls Phantom.
Is this your first car forum? This is what car enthusiasts do. As far as “where exactly is this” - it’s the steering shaft of the vehicle that connects the steering column to the rack and pinion. To me, that’s self explanatory - can’t help you if you don’t know where that is.

Paranoid? No - removing the frunk takes 5minutes. It took me longer to craft the post and attach the photos.

Someone’s steering column just rubbed a hole through a brake line. You better bet I’m going to take 5 minutes out of my day to make sure mine isn’t rubbing.

You can look up my post history - I can’t stand the panel gap criticisms folks put these cars through, but something like this is a little bit more important than panel gaps.
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Nov 28, 2018
10,380
11,723
Riverside Co. CA
Yeah this is quite a bit different than panel gaps and such.

Also, I hope that this demonstrates to some of the morons who questioned Junos earlier (I saw at least one post insinuating that he was a troll),

I also am the one who suggested near the beginning of this thread that I had some skepticism (post #18), and I also explained WHY I had that skeptiscm (posts 18 and 26) ,mentioned that people should hold off on judgements, etc (post 31), then, when OP posted screenshot of their communication with tesla (post 34), thanked them for doing so in the thread (post 38).

No one (me included) said "it cant happen, tesla is infailable, etc" thats projecting. What I said was "I am skeptical because this wouldnt be the first time someone posted something just to get people riled up, it would be nice to see something showing the car actually went to service".

We have been past that for quite some time, in this thread, relatively speaking, however. All that happened by post 38, and your post was post 175, so that discussion had long since been over with.

I also want to say (again) Thanks to @junos12 for sharing what they were told from the SC, including pictures, for interested people to look into.
 

Dolemite

is my name
Sep 19, 2019
1,353
1,649
Seattle, WA
Doing this through my phone…so excuse the formatting.

I believe folks are correct - the brake line was rubbing on the steering shaft. On my car, there’s a black plastic holder for the gang of brake lines. It is “pressed” into a hole in the uninody- similar to any regular ole plastic wire loom holder in all automobiles.

Mine was actually a quarter of the way out…and I pushed it back in.

You can see it in the attached photos.


View attachment 687438View attachment 687439View attachment 687440View attachment 687441View attachment 687442View attachment 687443

You can see it in the attached photos.

I looked at it for a little bit longer - answer is no.

The distribution block where the 4lines come out of is secured to the unibody. I applied pressure left and right, and it re-centered itself to original position.

Something else happened to OP’s for the line to be rubbing. Considering Tesla changes things on the fly, who knows how it is secured in OPs car.

For reference, the picture the OP shared appears to be taken from underneath the vehicle. I didn’t track the lines past the steering column, and I’m not going to remove the under tray, but it’s possible the problem could be how the line is secured on the other side (in OP’s car) towards the firewall (is it still called a “firewall” in a Tesla? :p ).
Checked this out, too - seconded on all counts. Mine was also a little "backed out," but it literally makes no difference due to how stout the lines are. In fact, it seems like the brake lines are holding the clip in... not the other way around.
 
Last edited:

Black306

Member
Oct 14, 2019
592
854
Sacramento
Well, looks like the OPs damage was here...

IMG_3347.JPG


My I-have-no-other-information-to-go-on-therefore-I'm-not-an-expert-in-the-situation-so-take-the-following-information-with-a-grain-of-salt guess? The brake line wasn't clipped to the upper plastic piece and was somehow bent in the direction of the steering shaft. Could be during assembly. Could be post delivery repair. Could be post accident repair. Could be...

IMG_3378.JPG
 
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Rmchrger

Member
Feb 21, 2021
94
174
Arlington, Washington
Checked mine, brake line is clear. Thanks Op for the update and picture. Only difference I see in others pics is (what I think is a grey dust boot) that has slipped down the steering shaft a bit. Black306 it looks like I can see the grey boot in your first pic all the way to the right (in the pic), further down than mine is. It slides easily so I'm going to try and slide it back up into place. Better said than done tho, its tight in there...
20210723_171842.jpg


20210723_173704.jpg
 

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