TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

Distance to Service Center an Issue?

Discussion in 'Model S' started by AuKirk, Aug 16, 2015.

  1. AuKirk

    AuKirk Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2015
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD
    New to the forum... While researching the Tesla Model S, I can't seem to find clear information about the need to actually go to the service center. I am about 50 miles from the Washington, DC area service center in Rockville, but can't imagine making the 1+ hour trip each way to service the vehicle, even if it is only once a year. (I am having trouble motivating myself to go down there for a test drive). I have seen prior discussions about a Ranger Service (which I believe was discontinued), but also see mention about some owners getting loaners brought to their house and the vehicle picked up. I can't find information about what the cost is for either of these.

    Can anyone shed some light on how this works or point me in the right direction? Thanks!
     
  2. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

    Joined:
    May 17, 2009
    Messages:
    18,235
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    Might be worth calling the Rockville service center and double checking the current policy with them. They usually are able to drop off a loaner but not always.
     
  3. Soolim

    Soolim Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2015
    Messages:
    849
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    #3 Soolim, Aug 16, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2015
    Welcome to the forum. Tesla is a great car, but many owners (so that I won't be flamed, let calls them the minority) have issues with the advertised features versus reality. Some have very high expectation, and justifiably so on a $100k car. So spend at least a few days going over the threads with high number of post to see which camp you belong to. Would you be a devout supporter of Tesla and overlook some issues, or would you be easily dissatisfied with the unfulfilled performance, promises and delays.

    For me an hour + each way (if it is only truly once a year) travel for service is not a big deal. But no one can guarantee that once a year will be adequate. Others will tell you that over-the-air (OTA) software updates is great and minimizes the need for travel to the service center (SC), but not all problem can be fixed by OTA. So if the travel for service (or possible repair) is a pain, can you live with that? When Tesla grows from a niche market to a mass market with the release of model 3 few years down the road, it will stress the quality of service that everyone is enjoying, but has already started deteriorating. Some reported service appointment backlog of 2 month.

    Tesla continue to change their practices from time to time, so beware of that. Again please read this forum and see whether Tesla is right for you.

    Good luck
     
  4. artsci

    artsci Sponsor

    Joined:
    May 10, 2012
    Messages:
    4,680
    Location:
    Timonium, Maryland
    I live north of Batlimore and my Model S is serviced at Rockville. It's about an hour's drive away.

    I do have Ranger service and many times Rockville sends a Ranger to my office parking garage or my home (when they are available, but not always) or a driver with a loaner or on a flatbed. We exchange cars and mine is off to Rockville. I've also driven to Rockville once or twice a year (just a few weeks ago for the LTE upgrade).

    I don't know what the service options are now (they've changed since I paid for mine more than two years ago) but I don't think there's any way you can avoid having to go to Rockville now and then. As a consequence, I've developed a very good relationship there with the service manager, which pays off in more ways than one might imagine.
     
  5. AC123

    AC123 Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2015
    Messages:
    104
    Location:
    USA
    Tesla is a fantastic car, the new ones are much more reliable than the older ones. But at the end of the day, it is a machine, and sometimes machines do break. If driving an hour once a year bothers you, maybe this isn't the right car for you. But do you imagine that with a Tesla, you might not mind the drive?

    Tesla's service as of today is excellent. The "your mileage may vary" adage applies. As there are more Tesla owners on the road, the service centers are getting quite busy. The Rockville SC is particularly busy. They are top notch, their attention and professionalism leaves no room for complaints. But they are hardworking/overworked. As compared to other car dealers (except Rolls Royce/Bentley etc.), Tesla's service is about as good as it gets. Still with more owners on the road, the service may go from excellent to very good.

    They are pretty good about giving you a loaner btw.
     
  6. AmpedRealtor

    AmpedRealtor Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2013
    Messages:
    4,705
    Location:
    Buckeye, AZ
    I live 50 miles from my service center. I used to get free valet service. They would bring a loaner car to my home and pick up my car, then return after the service was finished. I literally didn't have to lift a finger. Well, that was all changed some months ago. The valet radius was reduced to 10-15 miles, so now I don't get the free valet service that was offered at the time I bought my car. In my case it's not a big deal, since I drive all over the valley and I usually bring my car into the service center when I have appointments on that side of town.

    In your case, I would be prepared to take the car into service as needed. It's unavoidable, unless your service center is willing to extend to you a courtesy that is no longer policy.

    I understand that Tesla needs to adjust course based on an increasing number of cars on the road and limited financial resources. However, from my perspective, it's never a good thing if your policy changes are upsetting owners, and some of Tesla's recent changes are dong exactly that.
     
  7. CHG-ON

    CHG-ON Still in love after all these miles

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2014
    Messages:
    2,766
    Location:
    Santa Cruz Mountains, USA
    I live about an hour away from my SC. They bring me a car and take mine away. They do have a fairly long wait time for an appointment. But I am glad they still offer the Ranger Service here. I agree with Artsci. Build a strong relationship with your service people. It makes a world of difference. Imagine that what they usually get is complaints. If you can help make it easier on them, they will appreciate it, like most of us would.

    I have zero complaints about service. Only raves. They have been great.
     
  8. AuKirk

    AuKirk Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2015
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD
    Thanks for all the responses... all good advice. I am definitely not a complainer, but I have had my service center within 5 miles of my house for as long as I can remember. In my mind this has stuck out as an issue while researching Tesla, although it doesn't seem to be widely discussed on the forums, etc.

    With all that said... after spending the past few days reading up on-line, I did convince my wife to drive down to the DC-area today so we could take one for a test drive. We decided to go to Tysons Corner location, so we could combine it with a visit to Air & Space. This added another 20+miles beyond Rockville, and I have definitely decided the distance is not a deal breaker. It will certainly change the way I will need to schedule service, as I won't be able to drop it off on the way into work like I can with my Audi... it will require planning a day, but fortunately there is lots to do in the Rockville and Tysons Corner areas.

    Although I have wrapped my head around driving in for the service, I still wish they had an option where I could pay $100 or so for someone to come and pick it up. (For that matter, I suppose I could pay a college-age neighbor's kid to drive it down and back for $100 if I can't arrange the trip myself.)

    On a different topic... after spending the afternoon driving and learning about all the details of the Tesla Model S, I am convinced this is the next car for me. Now it is just a matter of figuring out what features I want and the timing. Unfortunately, my wife loved it too, and suggested that we should trade in her car and get the Model S for her to drive day-to-day, with me getting to use it on the weekends as the "family" car. I think we need to keep one gas-guzzling SUV for now, so the biggest hurdle on making the purchase may be negotiating the time-share agreement with my wife! :)
     
  9. Koryin

    Koryin Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2014
    Messages:
    64
    Location:
    Victoria
    I live on an island. Its about $75 each way to bring a car to the mainland where the service center is...
     
  10. LetsGoFast

    LetsGoFast Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2014
    Messages:
    1,342
    Location:
    Virginia
    It changed sometime after I bought my car. Valet service is now something like $3 per mile, where it used to be a flat $99. To be honest, I'm not even 100% sure what the current policy is.
     
  11. S'toon

    S'toon Knows where his towel is

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2015
    Messages:
    1,979
    Location:
    SK
    Well, if you think you need a SUV, you could always just put in a reservation for Model X. You'll have to wait a while until the ramp up production, and get around to making yours several months from now, but it'll be a Tesla SUV.
     
  12. AuKirk

    AuKirk Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2015
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD
    It's not so much the SUV size, but the gas-guzzling aspect that I think we need. Long-distance travel via Supercharging stations doesn't seem ideal.
     
  13. BoerumHill

    BoerumHill Member

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2015
    Messages:
    608
    Location:
    New York, NY
    I'll be about one hours driving time from the two closest service centers in Syosset or Mt Kisco (31 or 38 miles.) Suboptimal but it never gave me pause.
     
  14. mmccord

    mmccord Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2014
    Messages:
    765
    Location:
    Pine Bush, NY
    Funny, i replaced my car with a model S and my wife kept her trailblazer. We always used to drive the trailblazer for our road trips with the kids, but now we take the Tesla.

    In three months it's been to Pittsburgh twice, cape cod, the outer banks, Connecticut, and this weekend, northern Vermont.

    We reserved a model X because I can't imagine roadtripping in a gas vehicle again.
     
  15. Nixx

    Nixx Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2012
    Messages:
    57
    Location:
    Saskatchewan
    I called Tesla yesterday about long distance service. I am currently about 2000km from a service station.

    IIRC - The guy I spoke to said the ranger service was either free or the $100 (can't remember, this part wasn't important to me) charge for within 150 miles. Otherwise it's $3 per mile. This part I remember, because that makes a service call $3000 for myself (assuming $3 per mile one way, not round trip. or $6000 both ways lol?), which basically rules out a Model S in my future. Tesla Vancouver is supposed to call me to confirm.

    Even if they had rangers drive to the remote areas every one to three months and coordinate service with the people in the area at a much reduced fee (like even $200 or something), that'd be nice. It seems silly to pay for a service call for warranty work, but then again it's a niche car... but $3000? I'd like a $5000 discount for no warranty then because that's how much of it I'd use.

    And, I'm also curious what happens to really remote people that have catastrophic drive train issues... or the dreaded 12v dying. Do they pay to flatbed the vehicle 2000km?
     
  16. StaceyS

    StaceyS Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2015
    Messages:
    204
    Location:
    Bend, OR United States
    I'm about 180 miles from the closest service center. So far so good, it hasn't been a problem. The latest over the air updated didn't go on our car, we've gotten a "Contact Tesla Service" notice in our car. In talking with them on the phone about it, they've been diagnosing the car remotely and trying to figure it out from there. They've determined there's something up with the center console display so they're going to replace the whole thing under warranty. They've scheduled it a ways out and the car is behaving itself just fine for now. Because we're so far away, they're going to do a whole bunch of things for me at the same time. They are replacing the battery contactors, replacing my driver's door panel (fitment and finish issue), doing a diagnostic and check of the air suspension and I may have them do the LTE upgrade, but haven't decided if its worth the $500.

    They're going to have the car 2 days, and they're giving me a loaner in the meantime. Fortunately, I'm coordinating the trip with some work stuff too, so it sort of works out.
     
  17. tinm

    tinm 2013 S85 Owner

    Joined:
    May 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,136
    Location:
    New Mexico, USA
    I'm about 9-10 hours including Supercharger stops, to my nearest service. I hate it. it's only because my state is bought off by the auto dealer lobby and Tesla is banned statewide. Tesla does warranty service by driving a flatbed to my home then disappearing for 3-5 days before returning after a long jouney, during which time they pay for a rental.
     
  18. Jeffrey Chen

    Jeffrey Chen Member

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2014
    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Owings Mills, MD
    I live in north Baltimore (Owings Mills) tried to schedule for Valet loaner with Rockville Service center back in July, and was told the valet service will no longer be complimentary for customer who are over 15 miles from the service center. Instead it will be $3 per mile charge on the valet service. Tesla charge only one way for the whole round trip and there is no initial "pickup fee".
    Our early VIN Model S has required about 10 different service visits over two years of ownership. Tesla valet service has made these services a huge convenience factor for me. It also one of the features I like to impress upon people about Tesla's top notch service. but now it seems like a downward slip to me.
     
  19. AmpedRealtor

    AmpedRealtor Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2013
    Messages:
    4,705
    Location:
    Buckeye, AZ
    I would be shocked if Elon wasn't aware of, and didn't personally approve, many of the changes owners are discussing.
     

Share This Page