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Driving a Tesla through standing water

My wife is wondering if we made a mistake in buying a Tesla. We get some heavy rainstorms here and have to drive through standing water a foot or so deep. She is concerned that since it is an electric car, something (possibly the battery or motors) might short out.
What precautions does Tesla take to make the undercarriage of the car water resistant?
 

israndy

Supercharger Hunter
Mar 31, 2016
5,224
6,150
Alameda, CA
The good news is the bumper is just attached with pins so you likely can just clip it back. The downside is if it fills with water and you try out Teslas famed acceleration the weight can pull the bumper off, which is no fun.

I have been thru many deep water situations, the trick is to NOT open the doors while you are partially underwater. ICE cars can get water in the air intake and become stranded, not so in a BEV. I even did the floating thing at the Stonestown Mall in SF during a CRAZY rainstorm:
The wheels floated free for a second but when the front wheels hit the ramp up the rear wheel contacted and it drove again, it was only a second, but I have spent too many times trying to get a boat to the dock and had it go the other way, my heart jumped when I felt it float. Cool that you can accelerate and the tires move you forward thru the water. Too bad you cannot steer...
 
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qdeathstar

Completely Serious
May 17, 2019
4,814
4,932
VB
My wife is wondering if we made a mistake in buying a Tesla. We get some heavy rainstorms here and have to drive through standing water a foot or so deep. She is concerned that since it is an electric car, something (possibly the battery or motors) might short out.
What precautions does Tesla take to make the undercarriage of the car water resistant?

I don’t think driving through 1ft of water in a car whose door jam is 8” off the ground is a good idea. Obviously you made a mistake.
 
Thanks, guys, for the videos. I showed them to my wife, and she was impressed.
I won't go around looking for flooded areas to drive through, but it is nice to know that if I ever have to do it, it would probably work out OK.
I would think that an EV should be more suited to driving through deep water than an ICE. The EV has no air intake and fewer rotating shafts to seal. It seems to me that wire connections and batteries can be encased in epoxy and should be easier to seal than all the complicated hardware at the bottom of an ICE engine compartment.
 

thesmokingman

Active Member
Jun 21, 2021
3,954
12,040
Socal
Thanks, guys, for the videos. I showed them to my wife, and she was impressed.
I won't go around looking for flooded areas to drive through, but it is nice to know that if I ever have to do it, it would probably work out OK.
I would think that an EV should be more suited to driving through deep water than an ICE. The EV has no air intake and fewer rotating shafts to seal. It seems to me that wire connections and batteries can be encased in epoxy and should be easier to seal than all the complicated hardware at the bottom of an ICE engine compartment.
I wouldn't try that in anything but a Tesla for now. They are made to specifically be water tight. Who knows if other EV are made with that specifically in mind...
 
A guy with mountains of disposable income decided to see if his Model S could be like a SUBMARINE, you know, like that James Bond movie?

It was actually too buoyant the first try (the doors were taped to stop water getting inside while underwater)

Second time it was juuuuust heavy enough.

POINT IS: the batteries and motor worked fine even underwater.
So if you by accident get in deep water because of rapidly rising water, you are 100% safe.

Just don't drive into water.
Don't drown, turn around!
 
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