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Door Handles: My Tesla S gives me the cold shoulder when I leave it in the cold

Discussion in 'Model S: Interior & Exterior' started by William13, Nov 26, 2012.

  1. William13

    William13 Member

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    I have noticed that when I leave my Tesla outside in the cold that I have trouble getting it to respond and extend its handles. This is with gloves, with cold hands and even it will not extend when I get the fob out trying again.

    Suggestions or comments?
     
  2. Trnsl8r

    Trnsl8r Blue 85kwh since 12/8/12

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    I thought the door handles pop out when the car is unlocked?
     
  3. ChadS

    ChadS Petroleum is for sissies

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    No such bad luck here. I've been using 'em down in to the 30's (not sure how cold it is where you are) and they have worked just fine for us.

    I did notice yesterday, when my wife was behind me and she had the fob, that she had to be pretty darn close to the car before it would let me get in.
     
  4. bint2k

    bint2k Member

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    I'm curious to see what happens when this car sits in the freezing ice after a snowstorm and the handles won't come out.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Winter Testing….
     
  5. Jeeps17

    Jeeps17 Cath Jockey in a P85

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    That is a significant concern for many on these boards... we just don't have an answer yet.
     
  6. kevincwelch

    kevincwelch Active Member

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    This, wiper management, and battery performance. Although not last year, we've had stretches of below 0 weather in the Chicago area.

    Sent via Tapatalk.
     
  7. William13

    William13 Member

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    I will keep everyone updated as it gets colder. I seldom pulled out the wipers on other cars but they often need to be cleaned when scraping the ice and snow.

    Does anyone know how the handles sense? Is it the pressure, warmth, electric potential? Will I only be able to use capacitive gloves?
     
  8. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    Pressure.
     
  9. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    Ummm... how much trouble? I assume you do something to eventually get the handles to extend??? I understand it is pressure that activates the handles, so maybe the little micro-switch gets stiff in the cold? Does "extra" pressure on the handle get it to work?
     
  10. William13

    William13 Member

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    I eventually take the fob out of my pocket and try pressing on the handle again. If that doesn't work, I press twice on the roof of the fob. Repeat as needed until success. I may have a better rhythm now as I had less problem today.
     
  11. aronth5

    aronth5 Long Time Follower

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    Agree, especially when you're not able to pull open the door:mad:
    Frozen car door handle.JPG
     
  12. Jeeps17

    Jeeps17 Cath Jockey in a P85

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    That, and the equivalent giant icicle around the windshield wipers are my main winter concerns (well, that and what abrasives will do to the underbelly of the car and air suspension).

    Your picture is a fairly mild version of what we can get under the "right" conditions in Montreal, which happens several times per winter. The worst I ever saw was during the great ice storm in the late 90s, where my car parked overnight in an open lot was covered by 1-2 cm of solid ice, with scrapers inside (I was doing a 24h in-hospital call, and had not had a chance to listen to the weather forecasts). It took me a good hour to open the driver's door, trading tools with similarly stranded colleagues.

    On the S, heated door handles (turned on by pre-heating the parked car, along with the heated mirrors and window defrosters) would be great, but this is one of the situations where the "designed in California" aspect of Tesla does not inspire my confidence...

    I hope a few of their engineers have lived in true winter climes...
     
  13. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    I wonder if the battery in the fob is weak and the cold is affecting its range? You wouldn't think so being in your pocket and all...
     
  14. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    I've had things in my pocket (e.g. metal things) prevent the fob from working. Even to the point where I'm sitting in the car and the car refuses to turn on ("key isn't present" error).
     
  15. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    My current car is completely keyless, and the problem I have from time to time is that pocket lint works its way inside the fob and disrupts the battery contacts. I spend a few days jiggling the fob or slapping my pants pockets before opening the door (yes, that gets some unusual stares) before deciding to pop the fob open and clean off the battery terminals. Not sure how tight the Model S fob is, but there's something else to look at.
     
  16. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Weird. I've been using Nissan and Infiniti keyless systems for years and never had that happen!
     
  17. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    The design of my fob has a hidden "emergency key" that can be released and slid out to unlock a door (and now that I think about it, that'd be the only way to lock the glove box), and the dust/lint seems to work it's way in there. Maybe once or twice a year I have to pop it open and clean the battery, and it is always quite dusty in there!
     
  18. Jason S

    Jason S Model S Sig Perf (P85)

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    Definitely pressure. So little pressure on my car that I thought it was capacitive, but a quick test showed it is pressure.
     
  19. jerry33

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

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    Happens here in DFW as well. The heated door handles had better put out a lot of heat because sometimes the ice is 3-4mm thick.
     
  20. Jaff

    Jaff Active Member

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    We had a range proximity problem with the Roadster...our Ranger (Eli) moved the location of the antenna (when he had the dash apart for a different issue)...the range improved significantly.


     

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