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Cold weather performance

Discussion in 'Model 3: Battery & Charging' started by Filteq, Aug 13, 2018.

  1. Filteq

    Filteq Member

    Aug 6, 2018
    Northeast US
    I have been reading a lot of posts regarding the range loss, etc. during cold weather (our winters are usually between 0F and 40F). I was wondering if someone would share their experience regarding battery preheating and performance. I have read that the Tesla app now allows activation of preheating the battery prior to departure while plugged in, but I haven't seen many posts from people that have actually used this feature. Is that something that you should try to do whenever you use your car in the winter? I'm just thinking of scenarios like when I have to leave work abruptly and get in the car and go, etc.

    I'd also like to hear some specifics of how the cold weather effects overall performance. I have heard that it decreases/eliminates regen until the battery is warm enough. Are their any other changes that I should expect?

    I've never had an EV and some of the things that I'm reading about cold weather are not the most favorable!
  2. ewoodrick

    ewoodrick Active Member

    Apr 13, 2018
    Buford, GA
    I think that the best answer is...

    Just chill!

    Battery efficiency indeed decreases with colder temperatures, but the batteries are heated, just as they are cooled in the summer. After running for a few minutes, the batteries will help keep themselves warm.

    Look for a few percent decrease and keep the car parked inside. Unless trying to go long distances, life should be good.
  3. Shoal007

    Shoal007 Member

    Jan 7, 2018
    I live where temps range from -20 to 40 F during the winter. I purchased my m3 in Feb. I ran about 320wh/mi. About 30-40% loss in the worst of weather. It wasn't a problem for short trips but longer trips, I had to be cautious. No issues in the suer, getting 220 - 240 wh/mi
  4. Plug it in

    Plug it in Member

    Sep 23, 2016
    One thing that helps is to time your charging to be done just before you begin a trip, that helps to warm the battery.
    • Helpful x 1
  5. Big Earl

    Big Earl Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2017
    Springfield, VA
    The biggest concern in cold weather is getting stuck at a Supercharger with a cold battery. If the battery hasn’t been warmed up from pre-heating and driving, the vehicle will charge either very slowly or not at all until the battery temperature increases. If you’re on a winter road trip, Supercharge in the evening before the battery pack cools off. If you wait until morning to charge, you’re going to be waiting a while.
    • Helpful x 1
    • Informative x 1
    • Like x 1
  6. Rocky_H

    Rocky_H Active Member

    Feb 19, 2015
    Boise, ID
    I think people sometimes have these misconceptions that electric cars won't work well or it's bad for them operating in extremely cold temperatures. It's not either of those things at all. In fact, electric cars are very reliable in extreme cold. See the huge uptake of Teslas in Norway, for example, where they don't really have any time of the year that could really be considered "summer".

    The cars just use really really high amounts of energy for heating, though. That's both heating up the battery pack and heating up the inside of the car.
  7. TheLocNar

    TheLocNar Member

    Mar 10, 2018
    Just drive it like you stole it in the wintertime. :D

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