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Cautionary tips for new drivers of the Tesla

RidgeRunner

Member
Aug 21, 2020
116
48
houston
We have had the model Y for two months now. all of my concerns that I've inquired about over the past year have proven to not be a problem. I thank everyone that has responded to my questions and concerns here on this forum. Here are a few observations I've made that may provide some safety to your driving as it is very different.

1. Use the turn signal every time without exception whether anyone is around or not. Establish a solid habit for all lane changes and even pulling out of your own driveway. Turn signal indication is necessary for Tesla's idea of blind spot monitoring to work.
2. Always look in the side mirror before changing lanes. Other recent automobiles have audible tones that you may have easily relied on. first look in the cabins rear view mirrors for fast approaching autos (you may be going 60 mph they may be going 80). next look in your properly adjusted side mirrors. (
) While returning your eye to what's in front of you quickly glance at the screen, if there is a red car in the lane your changing into there is a car there.
3. when you stop at a light be careful that your foot is not ever so lightly on the gas pedal. You may be unaware that you are ever so slowly rolling into the car infant of you. get foot off the pedal and listen for the click if in hold "mode".
4. If you use the "traffic aware cruise control" part of auto pilot on a slower road like a parkway around 45 mph be aware that when you disengage it you will abruptly stop. The slower you are going the more abruptly you will stop and the person behind you will not be prepared for that, So when disengaging get back on the throttle quickly so that you do nonstop abruptly.
5. don't turn off of a thoroughfare abruptly as this will result in irritated horn honks or worse from the vehicle behind you. I do not know how quickly or when or if the brake light comes on in regenerative braking. Its best to bypass the turn and go around. After seeing where the store entrance is just pass it up and come to it again but slower.
6. when backing out be very cautious Other new automobiles have radar with audible tones that you may have easily relied on. Use the screen and be sure you are actually looking and paying attention to the image on the screen. While the screen has excellent clarity and wide angle it is easy to be thinking about something else.
7. Be careful about moving around or reaching for things while driving. The the steering gear ratio is 20 to 1, not 30 to 1 like the car you are used to driving. you can easily be in the other lane before you know it.
8. Set the camera to record on "honk" and test it out. You WILL have a situation where a crazy will cut you off in your lane or whatever other situation and it is nice to see what actually happened later.
 

Johnny Vector

Member
Jun 21, 2020
298
491
Maryland
Regarding #4: If you think the Tesla slows abruptly when canceling TACC, you should try a Chevy Bolt! When I got the Model Y, one of my first thoughts is that it's much more gentle about returning to pedal control when canceling TACC. The Bolt instantaneously goes into pedal-control mode. Fortunately I had it first so I had gotten in the habit of pressing the accelerator until the car starts to speed up, and only then disengaging cruise control. In the Tesla I don't have to match speed anywhere near as precisely.
 
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GtiMart

Active Member
Nov 13, 2019
1,840
1,711
Quebec City, Canada
All good comments. Really, most of this applies to all cars, not just a Tesla. As for regen issues, if you drove a manual before you would be more used to this. Same for not touching the gas pedal at a stop, you would have needed to hold the brake in a manual anyway. For steering ratio, I've found american cars to have less responsive steerings than most other makes. I believe your comment is just because of that. My Tesla's steering ratio isn't worst than my previous Subaru WRX.
 

RidgeRunner

Member
Aug 21, 2020
116
48
houston
All good comments. Really, most of this applies to all cars, not just a Tesla. As for regen issues, if you drove a manual before you would be more used to this. Same for not touching the gas pedal at a stop, you would have needed to hold the brake in a manual anyway. For steering ratio, I've found american cars to have less responsive steerings than most other makes. I believe your comment is just because of that. My Tesla's steering ratio isn't worst than my previous Subaru WRX.
Steering ratio: yeah on test drive I didn't like it. Now I like it a lot.
Gas pedal at stop, I was just amazed at how it gradually kept inching up and thought OOoooo I better pay attention and watch out for that. maybe its better to not do hold mode, what do you think?
same for the region braking. Haven't driven manual for a long long time.
 

RidgeRunner

Member
Aug 21, 2020
116
48
houston
Regarding #4: If you think the Tesla slows abruptly when canceling TACC, you should try a Chevy Bolt! When I got the Model Y, one of my first thoughts is that it's much more gentle about returning to pedal control when canceling TACC. The Bolt instantaneously goes into pedal-control mode. Fortunately I had it first so I had gotten in the habit of pressing the accelerator until the car starts to speed up, and only then disengaging cruise control. In the Tesla I don't have to match speed anywhere near as precisely.
Tesla better in so many ways. I love it!
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Moderator
Nov 28, 2018
12,553
15,008
Riverside Co. CA
All good comments. Really, most of this applies to all cars, not just a Tesla. As for regen issues, if you drove a manual before you would be more used to this. Same for not touching the gas pedal at a stop, you would have needed to hold the brake in a manual anyway. For steering ratio, I've found american cars to have less responsive steerings than most other makes. I believe your comment is just because of that. My Tesla's steering ratio isn't worst than my previous Subaru WRX.

I dont find the steering much different than all the BMWs I have had over the years either, with the exception that on those, if possible I put them in sport steering, and on my model 3P i use "regular" instead of sport steering and it feels the same as my wifes BMW with sport steering enabled.

On the OPs post I didnt quite understand point #5 (as to how it relates to a Tesla, I mean). Most of the rest of the other cautions seem to be around the fact that tesla does not have traditional blind spot monitoring, or rear cross traffic alerts (and rear visibility is challenging until you get used to it).
 

pkitch

Member
Mar 9, 2020
264
99
Atlanta
I dont find the steering much different than all the BMWs I have had over the years either, with the exception that on those, if possible I put them in sport steering, and on my model 3P i use "regular" instead of sport steering and it feels the same as my wifes BMW with sport steering enabled.

On the OPs post I didnt quite understand point #5 (as to how it relates to a Tesla, I mean). Most of the rest of the other cautions seem to be around the fact that tesla does not have traditional blind spot monitoring, or rear cross traffic alerts (and rear visibility is challenging until you get used to it).
I thought the same regarding the steering, surprised to learn that Teslas (and presumably BMWs) have such faster steering.
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Moderator
Nov 28, 2018
12,553
15,008
Riverside Co. CA
I thought the same regarding the steering, surprised to learn that Teslas (and presumably BMWs) have such faster steering.

Getting off topic here so I will not continue with the steering discussion too much more, but I didnt mean to imply "all" BMWs. The ones I got always had the sport options, if available (sport suspension or adaptive suspension, larger wheels, M sport styling and if applicable OEM motor tune, etc).

My wifes 5 series she had in 2016 had what I thought of as "sloppy" steering, and every time I get a rental car I feel like I am in a 1950s movie sawing the steering wheel back and forth because the car will not go where I want it. All in what you get used to, just like suspension.
 

RidgeRunner

Member
Aug 21, 2020
116
48
houston
I thought the same regarding the steering, surprised to learn that Teslas (and presumably BMWs) have such faster steering.
yeah #5, I did make an abrupt exit off the main thoroughfare and got a honk behind me. I didn't think it was that abrupt though. its probably like GitMart said: applies to all driving. But it did cause me to wonder how or even if the regen braking gives a red brake light. I've decided to "go around" in these situations where the turn off comes before I expect it.
 

Dennisis

Member
Supporting Member
Feb 11, 2020
787
735
Tucson
yeah #5, I did make an abrupt exit off the main thoroughfare and got a honk behind me. I didn't think it was that abrupt though. its probably like GitMart said: applies to all driving. But it did cause me to wonder how or even if the regen braking gives a red brake light. I've decided to "go around" in these situations where the turn off comes before I expect it.
Re regen braking from the manual: "Note: If regenerative braking is aggressively slowing Model Y (such as when your foot is completely off the accelerator pedal at highway speeds), the brake lights turn on to alert others that you are slowing down."
 
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Johnny Vector

Member
Jun 21, 2020
298
491
Maryland
Also, if you are in a situation where it's safe to take your eyes off the road, the icon on the screen shows when the brake lights come on. After some months of occasionally checking I've calibrated myself pretty well to knowing when the brake lights illuminate.

One thing to note is it takes a smaller amount of deceleration* to light them up when you're going slowly. Also they do come on at the very end of coming to a stop, and while you're stopped. (Again, unlike the Bolt, which sits there at a stoplight with no brake lights on if you don't put your foot on the brake pedal. I think that is a poor choice.)

*My inner physicist will always cringe at that term. It's acceleration regardless of whether it's in the same or opposite direction you're moving, consarn it. But, y'know, Ciardi's Law, "language works the way it does because it does." So fine, deceleration it is.
 
4. If you use the "traffic aware cruise control" part of auto pilot on a slower road like a parkway around 45 mph be aware that when you disengage it you will abruptly stop. The slower you are going the more abruptly you will stop and the person behind you will not be prepared for that, So when disengaging get back on the throttle quickly so that you do nonstop abruptly.
It will only abruptly stop if you're not telling the car to go (i.e. have your foot on the accelerator) - that's a feature of one-pedal driving, not a feature of the TACC specifically......there's no drift or glide like you had with an ICE. It's also true if you're coming up to a stop sign - in an ICE you would take your foot off the gas and roll up to the curb, but with one-pedal driving, if you take your foot off the "gas" before the stop sign, you'll stop before the stop sign. In an ICE if you disengage from adaptive cruise control (essentially the same as TACC), you'll still roll forward.
 

RidgeRunner

Member
Aug 21, 2020
116
48
houston
Man, remember all that controversy with Toyota's throttle or accelerator pedal. I hated Toyota's stiff spring loaded fix for it. Tesla could fix something like that with a "over the air" software update.

BTW,
Also, if you are in a situation where it's safe to take your eyes off the road, the icon on the screen shows when the brake lights come on. After some months of occasionally checking I've calibrated myself pretty well to knowing when the brake lights illuminate.

One thing to note is it takes a smaller amount of deceleration* to light them up when you're going slowly. Also they do come on at the very end of coming to a stop, and while you're stopped. (Again, unlike the Bolt, which sits there at a stoplight with no brake lights on if you don't put your foot on the brake pedal. I think that is a poor choice.)

*My inner physicist will always cringe at that term. It's acceleration regardless of whether it's in the same or opposite direction you're moving, consarn it. But, y'know, Ciardi's Law, "language works the way it does because it does." So fine, deceleration it is.
The Bolt is like that? Really? just goes to show you how far advanced the Tesla design team is.
BTW I wish the screen's brake light animation was brighter.


I do like calling it something other than gas pedal. to my electrical engineer friends I call it a potentiometer.
 

pbcsd

Member
Sep 12, 2021
100
42
GTA
Curious, have a few months before my Y comes in so learning as much as I can in advance. When do the brake lights come on when regen braking?

On the other cars have audible tones, does the Tesla literally not have a warning tone when going in reverse or forward and coming within a certain amount of space to a detected objec or when changing lanes when a car is detected? The screen obviously shows cars in front, behind and on the side, somewhat surprised they wouldn't have put in an a audible warning system as it seems trivial compared to the screen functionality?
 

bobbyjae

Member
Jul 13, 2021
122
75
MD
Curious, have a few months before my Y comes in so learning as much as I can in advance. When do the brake lights come on when regen braking?

On the other cars have audible tones, does the Tesla literally not have a warning tone when going in reverse or forward and coming within a certain amount of space to a detected objec or when changing lanes when a car is detected? The screen obviously shows cars in front, behind and on the side, somewhat surprised they wouldn't have put in an a audible warning system as it seems trivial compared to the screen functionality?
The brake lights come on right away when regen braking. The MY has audible tones all around when close to objects.
 

GtiMart

Active Member
Nov 13, 2019
1,840
1,711
Quebec City, Canada
I *believe* the brake lights go on in regen braking when you go over a certain force, in Gs. I don't know the exact value. I don't believe the lights should come on for a very light slowdown, like you can use engine compression on an ICE car without the lights coming on. The car image on the screen will show the when the brake lights are on.
 
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patricktr

‘22 MYLR / white ext / black / 19” / tow / FSD
Aug 23, 2021
46
91
Brooklyn, NY
properly adjusted side mirrors
I've set my side mirrors like that for years and years and am still kind of flabbergasted that not everybody does it like that. I already have the rear view mirror to show me what's behind. The side view mirrors eliminating the traditional "blind spot" seem like such a no brainer to me.

One thing I'm super excited about having a Tesla will be the driver profiles. Anytime anybody else drives my car, I have to readjust the mirrors back so that I don't have blind spots. Now I'll be able to just change back to my profile*.

* Is there like a "guest" or "valet" driver profile? Or do you just make one called guest and change it to that before handing anybody the key (card)?
 
I've set my side mirrors like that for years and years and am still kind of flabbergasted that not everybody does it like that. I already have the rear view mirror to show me what's behind. The side view mirrors eliminating the traditional "blind spot" seem like such a no brainer to me.

One thing I'm super excited about having a Tesla will be the driver profiles. Anytime anybody else drives my car, I have to readjust the mirrors back so that I don't have blind spots. Now I'll be able to just change back to my profile*.

* Is there like a "guest" or "valet" driver profile? Or do you just make one called guest and change it to that before handing anybody the key (card)?
There is a default "Valet" driver setting.
 
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