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Driving through water with no fear

Discussion in 'Model S: Driving Dynamics' started by DavidB, Feb 5, 2015.

  1. DavidB

    DavidB Aug 2013 S85

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    One concern I've heard about driving an electric car is how it might be shorted out if you drive through water.

    I've found that I actually have less worry about driving through water than when I drove an ICE car.
    --The regenerative breaking works just as well in all forms of weather (barring extremely hot or cold batteries).
    --The traction control works better than any other car I've driven.
    --The motor can't be ruined by sucking water into the air intake (there is no air intake).

    Granted, you still shouldn't drive into deep water, but there are very few vehicles that can take that sort of abuse. :tongue:

    Tesla Model S driving through a puddle.
     
  2. cgiGuy

    cgiGuy Member

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    From the "First Responder" Guide:
    Capture.JPG
     
  3. deonb

    deonb Active Member

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    Also, if the + and - terminals of a voltage source is close to each other, there isn't a great risk of electrocution in water.

    See:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dcrY59nGxBg


    (Be warned - watching Mehdi's videos can be addictive...)
     
  4. DavidB

    DavidB Aug 2013 S85

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    #4 DavidB, Feb 6, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2015
    :) Given the weight of the Tesla, I think ANY photo of a Tesla floating is photoshopped! But yes, that is good information to know.
     
  5. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

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    Salt water is the real NO-NO. Esp the Dead Sea or Great Salt Lake!!
    --
     
  6. DavidB

    DavidB Aug 2013 S85

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    See Mehdi get a nasty shock because he forgot how dangerous his experiment was!

    And yes, the + and - terminals are relatively close to each other everywhere in the car. There is no real danger to the passengers nor the bystanders.
     
  7. deonb

    deonb Active Member

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    Nah... He knows what he's doing. He get shocked for dramatic effect in almost all his videos.

    Like he said - he's a professional dumbass :).
     
  8. ChadS

    ChadS Petroleum is for sissies

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    A Tesla tech told me that the battery case is not only water-tight, but air-tight (with lowered pressure; if the pressure suddenly rises it disconnects itself. There are several other sensors for shorts and accidents that will do the same thing).

    As DavidB said, you still don't want to drive through deep water, but many ICE drivers seem to be afraid that water will just pour in to the battery, perhaps even in heavy rain.
     
  9. DavidB

    DavidB Aug 2013 S85

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    Tesla splash.jpg
    In the past I've driven cars where a splash like this might stall out the car. With many cars I'd worry about soaking my brakes. The only consequence from driving through this puddle (multiple times, for a photo shoot) with my Tesla was dampness in the frunk.
     
  10. Canuck

    Canuck Active Member

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    I'd recommend avoiding driving through water whenever possible since "Flooding of the Battery" is specifically excluded from the battery warranty coverage:

    Battery Limited Warranty
    The Model S lithium-ion battery (the “Battery”) is an extremely sophisticated powertrain
    component designed to withstand extreme driving conditions. You can rest easy knowing that
    Tesla’s state-of-the-art Battery is backed by this Battery Limited Warranty, which covers the repair
    or replacement of any malfunctioning or defective Battery, subject to the limitations described
    below. If your Battery requires warranty service, Tesla will repair the unit, or replace it with a factory
    reconditioned unit that has an energy capacity at least equal to that of the original Battery before
    the failure occurred. Your vehicle’s Battery is covered under this Battery Limited Warranty for a
    period of 8 years or for the number of miles/km specified below for your Battery configuration,
    whichever comes first:
    • 60 kWh - 125,000 miles (200,000 km)
    • 85 kWh - unlimited miles/km
    Despite the breadth of this warranty, damage resulting from intentional abuse (including
    intentionally ignoring active vehicle warnings), a collision or accident, or the servicing or opening of
    the Battery by non-Tesla personnel, is not covered under this Battery Limited Warranty.
    In addition, damage resulting from the following activities are not covered under this Battery
    Limited Warranty:
    • Exposing the vehicle to ambient temperatures above 140°F (60°C) or below -22°F (-30°C) for
    more than 24 hours at a time;
    • Physically damaging the Battery, or intentionally attempting, either by physical means,
    programming, or other methods, to extend (other than as specified in your owner
    documentation) or reduce the life of the Battery;
    • Exposing the Battery to direct flame; or,
    • Flooding of the Battery.
    The Battery, like all lithium-ion batteries, will experience gradual energy or power loss with time and
    use. Loss of Battery energy or power over time or due to or resulting from Battery usage, is NOT
    covered under this Battery Limited Warranty. See your owner documentation for important
    information on how to maximize the life and capacity of the Battery.
     
  11. DavidB

    DavidB Aug 2013 S85

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    True, flooding the battery voids the warranty, but that's almost impossible to do without letting your Tesla soak in more than a foot of water. Just driving through water puddles is not a problem, since the battery case is not only water-tight, but air-tight.
     
  12. jerry33

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

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    The problem is likely to be in the electronics outside the battery, but as long as you don't play U-boat Commander, you should be fine.
     

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