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Consumer Reports follow up after full year of driving

Discussion in 'TSLA Investor Discussions' started by kenliles, Jan 1, 2014.

  1. kenliles

    kenliles Active Member

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  2. sleepyhead

    sleepyhead Active Member

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    Is the AC unit really that weak in the Model S? That would be a deal breaker for me in Texas.
     
  3. jefflieb

    jefflieb Member

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    they forgot to mention the energy drain during cold weather
     
  4. Norse

    Norse Active Member

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    Remember that was a really early model. I bet they have upgraded the AC after they started sending the cars to colder places.
     
  5. Cattledog

    Cattledog Active Member

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    No, I live in San Antonio and it's not an issue. If you leave the car in the sun, the interior gets hot and it takes a few minutes for the cabin to cool - what car doesn't? However, the phone app does the trick. I left a meeting one afternoon in Houston, looked at the phone and saw the car interior was 134 degrees, started the AC as I walked out to my car, was down to 80 degrees when I arrived a couple minutes later. I have pano roof too, so if you were really nervous you can go with the solid roof.
     
  6. markb1

    markb1 Active Member

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    I don't think it is. But the automatic part of the system is truly bad. I need to override the automatic settings often to keep it comfortable.
     
  7. Denarius

    Denarius Active Member

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    Not an issue, pre-cool the cabin. Make sure you tint the side windows, that made a huge difference for me. I did not add tint the sunroof.
     
  8. kenliles

    kenliles Active Member

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    Cattledog experience matches some feedback I have from Florida associates. AC not a problem.
     
  9. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    I'm in Texas and it's not weak at all unless you have the rear facing seats, then it's not the a/c per se that's weak, it's the venting system that doesn't deliver the cold air to the third row. And pre-cooling means that you're never hot, although I usually use the pano roof to vent the car and then only pre-cool for a short time.
     
  10. jomo25

    jomo25 P4398

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    Im in AZ. No issues at all with the AC. Its' actually damn good IMO. comparing it to other cars, the AC blows very well and very cold. Plus, that you can pre-cool, its even better. I just don't want people to think that the pre-cooling makes it acceptable. It's great without it. But pre-cooling is a very nice bonus.
     
  11. vgrinshpun

    vgrinshpun Active Member

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    #11 vgrinshpun, Jan 1, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2014
    I actually believe that AC unit in the MS is much more powerful than in an average car. Right of the bet, when I got the car, I've noticed that the temperature of air coming from the vents when AC is on is significantly colder than any of the cars I have owned before (wanted to take measurements, but never got around to actually do it). The second thing is that cross-section of the vents seem to be smaller than any other car I've owned - which makes sense given that air coming from the vents is colder than usual.

    After giving it some thought I think that there are several things in play here:

    1. The system is designed differently from the systems in ICE cars due to liquid cooled battery, PEM and motor (glycol). It likely has several loops; looks like the cabin cooling loop, due to inherent design distinctions, is more potent than in average ICE.
    2. There are some advantages and disadvantages in having an "over sized" cabin cooling:

    • it is great in high solar load conditions as it has ample capacity to lower cabin temperature quickly and maintain it low very well in high heat load conditions - this is certainly an experience that I have had with my MS. My previous ICE car was in auto recirculation mode for about 0.5 hour of driving on an average sunny summer day, before it was able to cool cabin enough to switch to the outside air mode. My MS switches from recirculation mode to outside air mode within 5 minutes of driving under similar conditions (both cars were dark colors - black for an ICE, dark blue for my MS, but an ICE did NOT have glass roof)
    • the "over sized" AC system is not very good in maintaining comfortable cabin in low heat load conditions as it tends to be ON lower percentage of time, and could lead to an uncomfortable cabin because it will be efficient in maintaining the set temperature, but moisture removal is reduced because compressor will be off for greater percentage of time. In such conditions I, like markb1, find myself fiddling with manual controls to keep cabin comfortable (mostly lowering the set temperature)

      It seems that the system either lacking the humidity sensor, or it is poorly located, or the controlling software is lacking, or there is some combination of the above deficiencies.


    In conclusion, the AC system in MS is performing significantly better than an average system in high heat load conditions, which is exactly what is desirable for locations like Texas. Just be prepared to lower cabin temperature manually when ambient temperatures are moderate or/and the sun load is low (overcast days) in order to keep humidity in cabin low.
     
  12. Vger

    Vger Active Member

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    Actually, they do mention that explicitly, in the section titled Range:

     
  13. kenliles

    kenliles Active Member

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    Agreed, they seem to do a good job to mention every slightly negative experience against the near perfect rating.

    Hey , nice analysis on the AC, vgrinshpun. Those are aspects I would not have considered
     
  14. sleepyhead

    sleepyhead Active Member

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    Thanks for all the replies on AC. Just wanted to point out that how the AC works in San Diego (best climate in the world) doesn't really matter as far as Texas goes. I had a car that had awesome AC in 90* weather, but couldn't keep up in 100* degree weather (and sometimes we get ~100 days of 100*+ weather here in Texas). Those last 10* make a huge difference.

    The pre-cooling is nice, but the only thing I really care about is that the AC can get the car cool enough and keep it there, especially since I commute 30 minutes to work in each direction. Some AC units are just not strong enough to deal with Texas heat. If the guy from Consumer Reports is not happy with the AC (I assume he is not in Texas) then I am sure he would be less happy in Texas. If this really is the case then they probably got an early model to test and Tesla has improved the AC since then.

    Trust me, if the AC was not up to par then Tesla would have fixed the issue a long time ago.
     
  15. markb1

    markb1 Active Member

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    I suppose this is referring to me. I do know that San Diego is not hot, but I have driven my car in truly hot weather when I drove to Vegas and back in July.
     
  16. riceuguy

    riceuguy Member

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    I had the car all summer here in Austin and was never once hot.
     
  17. Norse

    Norse Active Member

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    If Q1 is good Sleepy, we both buy it :)
     
  18. towman26

    towman26 Member

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    I'm in south Florida and we really don't have a issue with it unless you forget to pre cool it, but even then it isn't that bad. We have th Pano roof and we put 5% tint on both panels & rear windows, 20% on the fronts which helped out a lot if you didn't pre cool. Not sure on how using the heat will effect us because its only got to 65 degrees so far this winter.

    Great article and review. I'm surprised they didn't mind the lack of & position of e cup holders. I have a shop working on a solution for me on that.
     
  19. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    I don't see how they got those results unless they turned the heat up to maximum and didn't use range mode. Then again, it's CR and they have a very poor track record.
     
  20. kenliles

    kenliles Active Member

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    Jealousy sets in....
    (For one who must wait for GenIII)
     

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