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"Charge cable may not be plugged in correctly"

Discussion in 'Model 3: Battery & Charging' started by minogully, Nov 23, 2018.

  1. minogully

    minogully New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2018
    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Ottawa
    Hey,

    I've had my Model 3 for a couple of months. I've plugged it in and charged it many times without issues before. Usually, when I plug it in, after a second the Tesla logo turns dark blue (from pale blue), at which point the charge cable is locked in.

    But today, I got a car wash from one of those touchless car washes. And now, when I plug it in, the Tesla logo doesn't turn dark blue it stays pale blue. The cable doesn't lock in. And my Tesla App says, "Charge cable may not be plugged in correctly".

    I've tried every way I can think of to plug it in, though, as I mentioned before, I've plugged it in numerous times without issues before.

    I'm assuming water got in there, and it's -10C outside, so I'm assuming that whatever water got in there also froze. I've tried using a hair dryer to melt any frost/ice that may have built up, and shoving paper towel in the port to try and soak up any excess water. But it still gives the same error.

    On the plus side, the car still charges, whether it be on a schedule or by telling it to charge immediately. I'm too chicken to attempt pulling out the cable while it's charging to see if it's actually locked in at this point (what if it's not??).

    Last thing I've noticed is that after I plug it in every second or so I hear a slight 'tick' sound. I imagine that this is the thing that is attempting to lock the cable in, and it's failing to do so, so it keeps trying every second.

    I'm using the Tesla Wall Connector as my charge cable.

    Anyone have any tips for me? Should I call service?


    Thanks In Advance,

    Jon
     
  2. Tempino

    Tempino Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2017
    Messages:
    24
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #2 Tempino, Nov 23, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2018
    Having the same problem. Just above 0 at the moment but started having the issue after the 44.2 update. It seems the charge port doesn’t lock at all anymore, and but do hear the click from my HPWC. Later when I check the app, I see the message ‘charge cable may not be plugged in correctly’. This is the second night in a row now. It’s not below freezing tonight (yet) so I’m not sure why this is happening.

    Edit - Starting the charge from the car rather than waiting for the schedule will lock the connector cable, then pressing stop will leave it locked. Not sure if your locking mechanism is already frozen. Are you on 44.2? They had pushed an update to help vehicles in the winter. The ticking issue I had earlier ended up being the small magnet piece missing from the connector flap and it was trying to continually close which service replaced.
     
  3. minogully

    minogully New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2018
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Ottawa
    Yes, the update ran last night.

    I've noticed that it locks correctly while it's charging, whether I start it on a schedule or if I press "start charging" in the app or in the car. I got the nerve to attempt to pull it out while it was charging and it was locked.

    So, it appears that the only issue is when it's plugged in and not charging, the app gives me that error message. Not sure if it matters that it no longer locks when it's not charging... maybe that's a new feature of the update?
     
  4. buchan

    buchan Member

    Joined:
    May 15, 2018
    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario
    I'm also on 2018.44.2 and just noticed this issue as well. Located in Ottawa too, so I wonder if it's the weather.

    However, being only -7C outside, it's a bit disheartening if it can't behave properly at this temperature.
     
  5. buchan

    buchan Member

    Joined:
    May 15, 2018
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario
    A Reddit thread suggests the 2018.44.2 changed the charge port behaviour and the app doesn't yet recognize it's new states.
     
  6. ArcticStation

    ArcticStation Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2018
    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    Downeast Maine
    Similar issue yesterday here in Maine. Plugged in at home after a cold (7 degrees Fahrenheit) morning out, set everything up to charge early next morning and noticed the charge port logo remained solid light blue for several minutes then turned solid dark blue (Hmm). Decided to change the touch screen setting to begin charge immediately to verify that the car would charge normally and noted that the charge started normally and charge port logo began flashing green. After verifying that car would charge normally, re-implemented scheduled charge time. Charge port door logo returned to solid dark blue. Later in the day, opened the app and noted the "may not be plugged in properly" alert (repeat Hmm) . Used the app to begin charge immediately, which worked normally. After charge was complete, checked app and noted that the car had properly charged to the requested level and the charge plug alert was no longer displayed. My take--as long as the car charges properly, I'm not too concerned. I'll try a scheduled charge later today to see if any of this behavior resurfaces, but my guess is this is a minor issue resulting from the latest firmware install coupled with the cold weather.
     
  7. ArcticStation

    ArcticStation Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2018
    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    Downeast Maine
    Well, it’s back, but it doesn’t seem to be a problem. Late yesterday I set everything up to begin charging early this morning. Mobil app showed the “Charge cable may not be plugged in correctly” warning. Ignored it. Later this morning charge was complete and mobile app warning was gone.
     
  8. NOCO24U

    NOCO24U Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2018
    Messages:
    76
    Location:
    Chicago
    same issue here. my car did not charge over night because of it. i initiated charging from the app now and its charging fine. not sure why it didn't start overnight, i did not touch the cable.
     
    • Informative x 1
  9. PwrOutage

    PwrOutage Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2013
    Messages:
    38
    Location:
    NW Chicago
    I have same issue. Cold weather. Charge light stays white. I've been charging via app manual. The v44.2 update caused the issue. History: Apr30th delivery. Error with charge port door in the past but Tesla said I could ignore it and haven't seen an error message since. Question to you all: Do we all have early production models? In any case I will be asking service to replace the charge door/port if a newer revision is out that makes less odd noises in the future. The door still seems to think it's not closed often because I can hear the motor trying to push it down.
     
  10. GSP

    GSP Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2007
    Messages:
    2,464
    I have an early VIN (<5000) model 3 and I am getting this message on the app. The car failed to charge on its schedule last Friday night. Saturday morning I started charging manually from the car.

    Sunday night I started the charge manually and the car was fully charged in the morning. When I turned on the heat with the app, the car would not accept energy from the plug or start charging.

    GSP
     
  11. swotam

    swotam Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2018
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Milton, Ontario
    I have this error appearing in the app as well, however the car does start charging as scheduled so I expect it's a bug in the app or some sort of issue between the latest app version and v46.2 of the Model 3 software. The charge port makes a clicking noise when the car is parked (with or without the cable inserted), so I suspect it's something to do with the locking mechanism as well.

    Regardless, in my case, aside from being visually annoying it doesn't seem to impact anything.
     
  12. Snow Drift

    Snow Drift Slip Start: [Activated]

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    Has anyone fixed this? I started getting the same error last night.

    48.x
    v3.8 app
    UMC

    Car charges fine manually, but won’t schedule due to the app message. Port itself is the correct colors. Plugged in fully. No voltage drop, etc.
     
  13. Seamonster

    Seamonster New Member

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    Jan 1, 2019
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    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    This happened to me yesterday, when it as about 36°F out. As far as I can tell this is a cold weather mitigation technique, to keep the the locking mechanism from freezing. The charge port had no problem locking if I instructed it to charge or turned on heat. After parking in a garage for a while the clicking sound and app message went away.
     
  14. Snow Drift

    Snow Drift Slip Start: [Activated]

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    It’s very odd. For a few days it has worked fine.
     
  15. pdp1

    pdp1 Member

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    Location:
    Northern California
    This happened to me twice so far in the 3 weeks I’ve owned my model 3. I believe they both coincided with when I returned home while the weather outside was in the 30s F, I always park in the garage. To “fix” it I forced the car to charge for a few minutes (I usually have it scheduled), removed the charger to stop charging, and then plugged it back in. After that, the ‘T’ light correctly went back to dark blue and the charger locked in.
     
    • Like x 1
  16. Snow Drift

    Snow Drift Slip Start: [Activated]

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    So it’s 38° outside, car in an unheated garage, and I got the error. So I went out and I noticed that the port is clicking, with the plug in and when the flap is closed (unplugged and locked). It seems to be trying to stay unlocked.

    It’s been a few minutes and now with the car locked and off it has changed to Stopped on my app, not the error message.
     
  17. scatter.xray

    scatter.xray New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2019
    Messages:
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    Location:
    vancouver, british columbia
    I have experienced the same issues for the past two days. My Tesla 3, (VIN 7200's) software 2018 44.2 has been using my Tesla wall charger (48A) circuit without issue for almost 4 months, and normally charges at ~45-48 km/hr.

    Current weather is cool, and car is parked in an unheated garage, likely (inside) 6-8 degrees C.

    Last two days when attempting to charge either with the app on my iPhone or from the car itself the charge port will open (manually) coupling of the male end to the charge port is incorrect - giving a blue solid light, then flashing green followed by flashing yellow. An error code comes up on the app as you describe "Limited charging. Charge cable may not be plugged in correctly".

    Sometimes this results in 0-1 km/hr charging. I have found that if I repeat the process I might get 14 km/hr, but on two occasions now on the third attempt (with waiting a couple of minutes) I am achieving 21-22 km per hr - with 235V, and apparently only utilizing 16/48 A.

    Appreciate any solutions that arise. Thanks for the discussion here.


    IMG_2185BB0A1E18-1.jpeg
     
    • Informative x 1
  18. eprosenx

    eprosenx Active Member

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    1,706
    Location:
    Beaverton, OR
    Just a data point: When you shove the connector in, a solenoid engages that locks the charging handle into the vehicle so you can’t pull it out while under heavy current load. This would create an arc flash that is dangerous and could cause damage.

    Tesla (rather smartly) has a fallback method such that if the solenoid fails to engage it does not leave you high and dry. It will still let you charge at up to 16 amps. I suspect this is a much safer charge current if someone were to pull it out while under load.

    There have been a number of reports like yours lately so either there is some software bug recently introduced, or, there is a hardware issue either related to the weather, or due to some component failing over time.

    I would call Tesla. Please report back what the resolution ends up being!

    P.S. also, check inside your charge cord and port to see if there is any broken plastic or debris in there. We have seen this problem from Model S and X vehicles where part of their charge port breaks off deep inside your charge pier handle and then causes an interference issue on a different vehicle that is not missing the plastic piece.
     
  19. Snow Drift

    Snow Drift Slip Start: [Activated]

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    @eprosenx the new winter protocol does not lock the plug into the car when it’s cold outside and not actively charging. That’s why we are getting the error. Once I hit start charging it locks and works fine. But, turn it off and it unlocks, preventing scheduling.
     
  20. eprosenx

    eprosenx Active Member

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    Yeah, I had seen posts alluding to that and I think I heard my car (which was plugged into my wall connector overnight but was long done charging) lock the solenoid, then the wall connector engaged it’s contractor when I used my app to kick in cabin heating.

    So this begs a question: Do people realize that this fundamental change has happened? Was it explicit in the release notes?

    We have frequently discussed and given people advice that “people can’t steal your UMC since it is locked to the car”. Tesla seems to have unilaterally changed this to work around a hardware defect where the charge ports freeze up. I wonder if this is the new behavior year round, or just in cold weather?
     

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