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Clicking noise from dashboard in front of passenger side

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Colorado_Mike, Aug 14, 2019.

  1. Colorado_Mike

    Colorado_Mike Member

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    Jul 28, 2017
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    Location:
    Erie, CO
    I have a 2017 Model S 60D and just recently started (started late last week) getting a ~10 second click that seems to originate from the dashboard in front of passenger seat. It happens pretty much every time when I open the doors. I'm guessing a relay is not correctly contacting when the car is starting up. Any thoughts on what it could be? The car will go to Tesla next week. No warnings/messages from car.

     
  2. luckyj

    luckyj Member

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    Location:
    Northern Virginia, USA
    Similar thing happened to me and it went away after a couple days...let me know what you find out!

     
  3. Galinette

    Galinette Member

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    Location:
    Nantes
    This sounds more like a faulty fan, but no idea why it stops. Or any motor related to the air conditioner.
     
  4. TeeEmCee

    TeeEmCee Member

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    One possibility:

    AC ducts have louvers that control the airflow. They adjust their position either when you change the airflow manually or when it automatically adjusts to a lower or higher level while on the Auto setting. Those louvers are controlled by step motors and, when the motors or the respective opening closing/mechanisms go bad, they make clacking noises like that.

    This was a known aging problem in VWs/Audis some 15 years ago.


    Your videos show this happening when you open the door, which would be when the AC switches from off to on, so those motors would operate for a few seconds. If it never happens with the AC on a manual (non-variable) setting, then those motor assemblies are the likely cause.
     
  5. bz51

    bz51 Member

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    Aug 26, 2017
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    Location:
    St. Louis
    I've had the same issue for the past two weeks and just got it fixed today. Long story short, the service center said it was related to a faulty actuator in the A/C system that needed to be replaced. Basically what TeeEmCee said.
     
  6. Colorado_Mike

    Colorado_Mike Member

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    Location:
    Erie, CO
    I tried turning off the Air Conditioning before opening the door but it still made the same noise. Not sure if that indicates that it's not what you are describing bz51, just a data point.

    At this point it does seem like a non-critical function of the car. I was concern about driving it too far from home, but if its AC, I'll just be uncomfortable, not stranded.
     
  7. Saimaannorppa

    Saimaannorppa Member

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    Sep 3, 2017
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    Location:
    Finland
    Probably this. Reason for sound is that the physical contact which should indicate to the step motor to stop is not being recognised, so the motor just runs the flaps against the boundaries until there is a timeout.

    Had an A8 with 12 or 16 or something of these step motors clicking and failing every few years. Changing some of these required dismantling the whole dashboard because they were in the back. German build quality.
     
  8. adspguy

    adspguy Member

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    Dec 1, 2016
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    Location:
    Newton MA
    I had exactly the same thing. It happened for about 1 week then stopped. They replaced the air intake actuator. See attached invoice clipping. It is a very specific noise for that particular problem.
     

    Attached Files:

  9. Colorado_Mike

    Colorado_Mike Member

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    Location:
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    How long did it take? Did they diagnosed and fix within the same day?
     
  10. TMeister

    TMeister Gearhead

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    Boise, ID
    Shouldn't this car still be under warranty? Have them run a thermal systems test. It runs all the servos through their range and reports which ones have failed. Your clicking is loud for a servo but it does have the right frequency. This happens when gears are stripped and the servo runs to try and get the feedback pot to align. It usually runs for a set amount of time if that doesn't happen.
     
  11. SupastarsaM

    SupastarsaM Member

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    Location:
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    Actuator behind your glove box.
     
  12. adspguy

    adspguy Member

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    Location:
    Newton MA
    I had originally requested the passenger airbag recall service, which was about 10days out. This noise started happening after I made that appointment so I added that to the request, mentioning the noise and also my self-diagnosis. The mobile repair guy brought the right part and was happy that he was doing the airbag at the same time, since it required basically the same dis-assembly. My car was no longer making the noise, but based on my description and possibly error codes in the car (not sure, didn't ask) he did the replacement. I did play him a recording of the noise. It is a very specific noise and easily diagnosed problem. The whole mobile service was under 2 hours and included the airbag, the actuator, and adjusting my windshield washer nozzle.

    The noise you recorded is definitely the actuator. Same noise. Obvious diagnosis.
     
  13. Colorado_Mike

    Colorado_Mike Member

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    Location:
    Erie, CO
    Was exactly adspguy said it was "Intake Actuator". Dropped the car off at 10am, left with a loaner at 10:20am, received a text that it was done and ready for pick up at 1:30pm. Repaired under warranty. Quick and painless other than having to drive through Denver traffic a couple times, can't wait until Superior Service Center opens. Denver Evans Service Center was awesome!
     

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