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Couldn't turn key past locked position

Discussion in 'Roadster' started by cinergi, Nov 6, 2010.

  1. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    Just had a small nightmare with my Roadster :frown: ... fortunately solved for now, but thought I'd share my story.

    I'd stopped for a coffee and when I got back into the car, I couldn't turn the key past the off position. I spent a good 15 minutes trying all possible movements (turning the wheel while twisting the key, flipping the key over, re-inserting 100 times, etc.). I ended up calling roadside assistance and indeed I'd exhausted every option except one -- spraying the inside of the lock with silicone lube. Fortunately a friend of mine was around to pick me up, drive me to the nearest AutoZone so I could get a $4 can of the silicone spray lube, and back to my car. I sprayed the key and the inside of the lock and after about a minute of jiggling and re-inserting, it finally went. Phew! I was very close to needing a flatbed tow (to my house) and waiting until Monday or Tuesday for a tech to come out and fix it.

    Last week, my trunk release (both key fob and interior button) wouldn't work (it didn't even SOUND like it tried to do anything when I pressed the button) -- I had to open with a key. Between these two things, the fogging lights, a bubble in the "paint armor", and the suspension rattles & squeaks (to be checked into), I'm getting a little ... turned off. :frown: I'd have been a little embarrassed to have it towed today, but even more embarrassed for Tesla.
     
  2. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    Glad you got it worked out. I think I need to create a 'Happy Thoughts' Roadster thread that I can focus on until my Roadster comes. Then I can read about all the problems=)
     
  3. rugbymonk

    rugbymonk Roadster #287; S Sig #14

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    I had rattles and squeaks in mine (#287), but the NY office took care of it, no charge. Great service there and lots of help. Ask for Will or Raphael.
     
  4. strider

    strider Active Member

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    Fingers crossed mine has been perfect since I picked it up last Tuesday. :cool:

    The only thing I noticed today after I washed it for the first time - a lot of water seems to collect in the front radiator area. I had to run the wiper a fair amount the first few miles.
     
  5. mpt

    mpt Electrics are back

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    Welcome to the leading edge chaps!

    I've had a number of niggles with mine but interestingly it's been the 'old tech' components that have let me down.
     
  6. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Tip: open the hood and wipe down the drain channels before you dry the car.
     
  7. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    Well that's exactly it. I'd be more OK with the new stuff failing (although stranding me isn't really OK) than the stuff that's been around for a while and shouldn't be a problem -- like keys, latch mechanisms, suspension, weather seals, lights, etc. It's pretty clear all the focus went towards the EV side of things and very little towards the rest of the car. I've got some tolerance given that this is hand-made and low-volume -- I've been letting that stuff go thus far, but:
    1. This is version 3 of the car
    2. There are numerous "old-tech" problems (at least for some of us)
    3. I'm much less OK with problems that require flatbed towing
    4. It makes Tesla and EV's look bad (to, e.g., the 50 people that saw me stranded in the parking lot and the guys that know me who I ran into and asked about what the problem was -- even though it wasn't an EV-specific issue, you can bet they walk away with an "EV's aren't for me" attitude)
    5. These problems can't pervade the Model S (bad brand, costly, etc.)
     
  8. qwk

    qwk Model S P2681

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    You should be relieved it's the non-EV component's as the rest of the car is just a LOTUS, which has a tendancy to have the same problems as any other car.

    No matter what car you buy you are going to have minor problems. No machine is perfect. As for the sticky locks, there is a product called graphite lube especially made for them. Works like a charm, and is dry so no mess.
     
  9. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    #9 cinergi, Nov 8, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2010
    I actually am relieved, because otherwise I'd start to doubt the maturity / readiness of EV (or Tesla's abilities). However, I've owned 6 other cars and I've never had this level of problems with them -- so I must respectfully disagree that it's just typical car problems, especially because it's only 4 weeks old. And it's only got ~7% part-share with the Elise so it's not really fair to call it that, either.

    Like I said, I'm glad it wasn't an EV-specific problem, and I can understand the need to focus on that part of the car versus the rest of it -- but shipping (and continuing to ship) it with lots of problems tells a story (open to interpretation). While Tesla staff is eager to help, and I sincerely hope Tesla is successful (I can't wait to see how the Model S does and drive one), this isn't a good sign. The general public won't be as lenient as we early adopters are.

    Edit: I realize I contradict my old post when I said I'm glad it wasn't EV-specific; the message I wished to convey was that "of all things to fail, it should be an EV-specific thing" and not something "stupid" like the ignition lock.
     
  10. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    That steering column is on many cars and Lotus just buys them (is it GM?).

    I had the same problem a few months ago. After the third time in a row it happened I finally got it going took it straight to the LA store. They simply put in a spray lube and it worked great since!
     
  11. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

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  12. tennis_trs

    tennis_trs 2010 2.0 Roadster Sport

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    I just had the same problem. It didn't get past the point of requiring many tries of twisting the key while pushing the key in different directions to finally get it to work, but it seemed very close to leaving me stuck.

    "Lock-Ease" graphite lubricant fixed it fine. It did take several turns after spraying the lubricant in before the key would finally turn normally again.
     
  13. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

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    After close to a year my Roadster was squeaky (although not disturbingly loud) around the dash area. I hadn't even mentioned it to them but when Tesla fitted my CF parts, the Tech (Ranger Byrone, he did a great job!) put some thin felt strips underneath the fitting edges of the new parts wherever he could. As he fitted the whole dash, waterfalls and sills with CF parts it basically removed all squeaking.
     
  14. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    I had forgotten about this as it happen to me too. I got it working and swung by the Tesla store. a bit of spray an it was fine.

    Remember this steering wheel is on many cars beyond the Roadster.
     
  15. hcsharp

    hcsharp Active Member

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    How often should we spray it? What other cars is it on?
     
  16. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    No idea how much. Mine has been fine for over a year at least.

    Somewhere in these pages is a list of them. The Lotus Elise, Exige are all I can remember now.
     

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