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Drive Unit Failed - Dashcam video

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Ben W, Jul 8, 2015.

  1. Ben W

    Ben W P85 #61, Roadster #108

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    #1 Ben W, Jul 8, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2015
    So the drive unit on my Model S P85 Sig P00061 just failed, slightly shy of 30k miles, stranding me off the freeway in the middle of the night... I caught the whole thing on dashcam, in case anyone is curious what the symptoms are. It may have been triggered by the strong regen going down the offramp; I didn't notice anything amiss on the freeway before this. Note in particular the loud clunk around 0:30. (Pardon the music.) Towards the end I muted the volume, and you can hear the strange whirring noises as the car grinds to a halt:

    Tesla Drivetrain Issue - YouTube

    Tesla is flatbedding her to the Van Nuys service center, hopefully she won't be gone long. I'll post updates when we find out exactly what's wrong.

    Get better soon, Joules!!
     
  2. Todd Burch

    Todd Burch Electron Pilot

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    Sorry to hear, but wow, I'm surprised such an early unit made it this far. It's no secret there were some issues with the early ones.
     
  3. tga

    tga Active Member

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    Focus on the reflections from the right shoulder (one might be a traffic cone?) when the clunk happens. You can see the dashcam shake from the vibration. Eww...

    Get well soon!
     
  4. supratachophobia

    supratachophobia Active Member

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    Did you notice any whining from the drive train over the past few hundred/thousand miles?
     
  5. muleferg

    muleferg Member

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    This happened to me when my car was new April 2014. Mine was from fast acceleration. The dash screen said move over safely. I called Tesla, they told me to reboot the car. It worked and I returned home. They called me monday am and said they were picking the car up tuesday. They replaced the drive train and no issues over a year.
     
  6. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    I'm curious on this too. If I recall correctly, Tesla does do preventative replacements when there are reports of weird noises from the drive-train.
     
  7. Ben W

    Ben W P85 #61, Roadster #108

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    No, nothing out of the ordinary. I hadn't been driving it particularly hard. No errors appeared on the console, which I thought was really surprising. Rebooting didn't help. The car is on its way to Van Nuys right now, will see what they say.
     
  8. demundus

    demundus Member

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    This makes me nervous, although I'm scheduled to go in and have my unit looked at and hopefully replaced, as I am out of town warranty but do have one "good will tow". I get the clunk semi-regularly now when going from regen to drive, I can also hear a whine sometimes, but never noticed a pattern or why. I feel like I should get on the move here with service and drop it off today :scared:

    Good luck and keep us posted!
     
  9. Ben W

    Ben W P85 #61, Roadster #108

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    Come to think of it, I've been noticing the clunk a bit more than usual recently when shifting between drive and regen. Quite possibly that's related to the failure.

    In the meantime, I'm secretly hoping they will find a reason to replace my type-A battery pack with a newer one, so I can get 120kW supercharging :D
     
  10. Johan

    Johan Took a TSLA bear test. Came back negative.

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    Didn't you know about this issue? Also did you not get proactive drive unit replacements like thousands of cars did here? Mine did it was an early EU production. By that point I had a small bit of slack in the drive unit, but I would have gotten the replacement even if I had said it was completely tight.
     
  11. Ben W

    Ben W P85 #61, Roadster #108

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    The clunk was subtle enough that it barely registered; I wasn't even sure if it was really different from ordinary, but in hindsight I'm thinking it was. I believe the early EU units had a systematic problem with the amount of grease applied to the drive units; this is different from the early US VIN's. I don't think my drive unit had been proactively replaced before, but I'll double-check with the service center.

    Interestingly, flatbedding the car seems to confuse the iPhone Tesla app mightily. It briefly shows the current location in transit, then immediately switches to the last-known parked location (where the car broke down). So the map screen simultaneously shows the correct street address, but the wrong (old) location on the map.

    I had also been planning to stop by the service center anyway because my Roadster -> Model S charging adapter had been acting wonky, taking a couple minutes of fiddling before it would lock in and charge. So, two birds with one stone. (Well, a hummingbird and an ostrich!)
     
  12. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    If you figure that out, let us know! Some early contactor failures resulted in some owners getting whole new packs, but by the time my contactors failed, they had figured out how to take the existing battery pack apart and fix it locally at the Service Center. Got my car back with the same A-pack.
     
  13. SeminoleFSU

    SeminoleFSU Member

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    I think it lost the will to live having to endure that song... :tongue: All kidding aside, that's scary stuff... good thing you weren't out in the middle of nowhere...

    - - - Updated - - -

    My car is starting to do the drive/neutral/regen clunk more and more loudly... makes me wonder if I'm on the cusp of imminent failure.
     
  14. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

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    > My car is starting to do the drive/neutral/regen clunk more and more loudly... [SeminoleFSU]

    This is like a rear axle on a diesel pickup reaching 350k miles - time to replace it or at least no more heavy hauling!!
    --
     
  15. capt601

    capt601 Vin02324

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    Same thing on ours at 34,000. Zero noises before. Just a little thump, almost like a tire blowing out, on freeway and zero power. Tesla service was fantastic for the issue.
     
  16. Ben W

    Ben W P85 #61, Roadster #108

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    #16 Ben W, Jul 14, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2015
    The dangers of Slacker on shuffle :redface: Clearly if I restrict myself to only high-quality music in the future, the drive unit will never fail!
     
  17. apacheguy

    apacheguy Sig 255, VIN 320

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    Odd indeed that no errors were displayed on the MCU.

    @Johan - Sig drive units are not replaced proactively. Mine made it to 46 K and was replaced only because I complained of the milling noise.

    Yep, ive seen this too.
     
  18. ken830

    ken830 Model S (Res#P12,447)

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    No such luck for me either. After 1+ year of huge range drops and the Palo Alto service center claiming everything was normal, my Rev A pack refused to charge at the Supercharger on my return trip from Disneyland. I dropped the car off at the LA service center and got a loaner to drive home. They put a loaner battery pack in my car and flat-bedded it to me within a week. The Rev-B loaner pack in my car Supercharged incredibly fast compared to my battery, but they contacted me 6 months later and said my pack was repaired. So sad. The good thing is that my repaired pack still supercharges faster than it used to. I guess it was semi-defective from the beginning.
     
  19. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    It's interesting that you say that, because I had a similar experience: Last summer, I noticed that Supercharging was quite slow and I could no longer get full 60 kW of re-gen. Even going 70 MPH and taking my foot quickly right off the accelerator would only yield about 35 kW of re-gen power. (My range numbers had also dropped a fair bit). Service said everything was okay. Last winter, my main contactors failed. After they repaired and returned the car, I noted that I was getting full 60 kW of re-gen again and that Supercharging was much faster as well.

    I could never reconcile this in my mind. I thought contactors were like a switch: either they worked or they didn't. Obviously something else at play here.
     
  20. bigsmooth125

    bigsmooth125 Member

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    Same thing happened to me. What irked me was that before the incident I told the service center two separate times that I could hear a distinct whine every time I accelerated. Both times they said the sound was normal.
     

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