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Extremely loud noise when charging from the wall connector

Discussion in 'Model S' started by redapex, Jul 3, 2018.

  1. redapex

    redapex Member

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    Lately I have noticed that my Model S (built in August 2016) makes a very loud noise when charging from the Tesla wall connector (at both 40A and 48A). It's very quiet in the beginning, and then after 1-2 hours the fans turn on to cool the battery and the noise gets so loud that you cannot carry a conversation if you stand next to the car! It's definitely louder than what I heard while charging at a supercharger. The problem seems to be that the louvres remain closed when the fans turn on, and the air seems to be escaping around the closed louvres making a loud noise. If I unlock the car while it is still charging, get in the car and turn the AC on, both louvres open and the sound diminishes considerably - you can still hear the fans running but it's much quieter. When the fans turn on to cool the battery while I am at a supercharger, the louvres open immediately. So the problem comes up only while charging in my garage.

    Have any of you noticed the louvres remaining closed when the fans turn on while charging at home?
     
  2. MarcusMaximus

    MarcusMaximus Active Member

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    I had exactly this happen. Measured the sound at 85dB. For whatever reason the service center was reluctant to take my car in on short notice but ended up doing so anyway. They ended up having to replace the entire HVAC system. Highly recommend taking it in immediately. It could have just been coincidence, but over the few days of charging like that before I got an appointment, I lost ~8 miles off the maximum range on my car.
     
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  3. redapex

    redapex Member

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    Wow! Thank you for your response! I have an appointment set for next Monday (the local SC didn't have any earlier availability). I haven't thought about the HVAC system being a potential culprit - since the louvres open normally during AC operation and at superchargers, I thought it's probably a mechanical issue with the louvres operation or a software issue, but after seeing your response I realize that it may be the HVAC...
     
  4. MarcusMaximus

    MarcusMaximus Active Member

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    Ya, I had the same louvre behavior as well, though I never checked at a supercharger after the issue started occurring. I believe the service center did replace the louvres first, but then found there were bigger problems with the whole HVAC system and had to replace the entire thing.
     
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  5. David29

    David29 Supporting Member

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    So, two people say they had the "whole system" replaced. Wow. That strikes me as poor diagnosis. It does not make sense to me, based upon owning a dozen or so cars with HVAC systems over the course of 40+ years, that there is not just one or maybe two components accounting for this behavior. Seems like very drastic action.

    How can Tesla ever become profitable if they make these types of repairs when there is probably something less drastic they could do, if only their diagnostic tools or skills were better.

    Then again, perhaps I am taking the comments too literally. Can someone clarify what is meant by replacing "the whole system" -- AC compressor? Evaporator? Condenser? Dryer (if there is one)? pumps? Fans? control circuitry? Fluid lines? Louvers? connecting wiring?
     
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  6. MorrisonHiker

    MorrisonHiker S 90D 2018.42.2

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    Actually, @MarcusMaximus stated in two different posts that his was replaced.

    It does seem they could just replace the affected parts unless there was a major problem with the entire system.
     
  7. Don85D

    Don85D Member

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    Changing all AC components is the better way to go. Any debris inside the system due to a component failure can never be totally evacuated so changing only the failed component results in another system failure in a year or so. For a better repair changing the entire AC system is what I would prefer.

    On the other hand, if the problem is louvers not opening that should be a separate problem and repair. I might try propping them open as a temporary fix. More air flowing has to be good except maybe in winter.

    Another thought for your consideration.
     
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  8. MarcusMaximus

    MarcusMaximus Active Member

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    To be clear, those were both me. My second comment was just clarifying that the louvre bit occurred with my car as well. Tesla didn't give me very specific information, and just said that they replaced the whole HVAC system. It's possible what they actually did was less drastic than they made it sound.
     
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  9. gavine

    gavine Petrol Head turned EV Enthusiast

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    Did your HVAC work in terms of cooling the cabin? If so, I wonder why it needed to be replaced to cool the battery. This doesn't make much sense to me, unless there are two-separate cooling systems for the battery and cabin, which I doubt.
     
  10. MarcusMaximus

    MarcusMaximus Active Member

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    It did generally, yes. It occasionally dropped completely for a bit on really hot days a few months before, but I think that was a common issue at the time, and may be coincidence. And from my understanding, it’s the same system for both.
     
  11. Latorre

    Latorre Member

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    Same here. Did yours sound like this...?

     
  12. redapex

    redapex Member

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    Yes, very similar. They had to replace a couple of HVAC system components, and now it's as quiet as before
     
  13. whitex

    whitex Active Member

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    You should have kept going with your camera to show if the louvers were open. With the two fender fans going as you your did, those should be wide open. If they are not, anything blocking them? Is one open and not the other maybe? Tried helping opening them manually?
     
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  14. Latorre

    Latorre Member

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    Thanks for the input. Is there a link you can share that can show me how to check whether the Louvers are shut and how to open?
     
  15. ucmndd

    ucmndd Active Member

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    Post 8 in the other thread you created for this topic does exactly that:

    2016 Model S 75 - Deafening Sound while Charging
     
  16. Latorre

    Latorre Member

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    Well...I got my car back today.

    The Verdict? Lmao, after being told the loud fan noise was “normal.” It turns out it wasn’t “normal.”

    The fellas at the SC confirmed it was the Louvers and they had to replace them. Tonight I’m charging the car up for a long trip tomorrow.

    Let’s see how it charges up!

    Thank you all for the input.
     
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