Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register

Homelink operation in reverse?

Ruffles

Member
Jun 13, 2017
461
689
Snohomish WA
Does anyone have any tips or advice for getting the Homelink feature to open a garage door in reverse? I have to back into my garage in order to reach the charger so I have to back up my driveway which has a little curve to it. I've set the GPS location by pulling out of my garage and stopping right in front of the door and setting it. The problem is that when I reach that same spot while in reverse backing up my driveway, it doesn't trigger.

My work around is to set the location from the street right in front of my driveway right where I turn around but because of the distance, it only opens about 50% of the time.
 
  • Like
Reactions: patnshan

boaterva

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Apr 2, 2016
7,573
3,746
Northern Virginia, USA
The transmitter is in the front of the car, from what I remember. So, it may have issues ‘reaching’ through the car to the garage door receiver.

Have you tried lengthening the antenna on the garage door receiver? It’s just a piece of wire normally, add a foot and be sure it’s hanging straight down. More/enough of the signal may get there then from the transmitter in the car.

Obviously since it’s mounted in the front, Tesla didn’t think people would be backing in!
 
  • Like
Reactions: bobby g

DoctorVenkman

Member
Jul 29, 2018
428
520
Los Angeles
The way homelink works is a bit counter intuitive. The location you set essentially marks the center of a circle, and the distance you set is its radius. Any time you cross through the circle made by those two parameters the homelink will trigger.

So if it's not triggering, either the GPS location you set is off, or the radius you set is too small. You can play with both parameters to get the desired outcome, but I would recommend setting the GPS location inside your garage and setting the radius somewhere around 30 feet. That should have the device trigger right as you are backing up to the garage.
 

BenP

Member
Apr 14, 2019
46
23
Detroit, Mi
Don’t mean to hijack this tread but I think the GPS Homelink option can be dangerous. I think it’s better to do the opening and closing of the garage manually. This has been my experience that I would like to share. We have a 4 car garage and normally the MX lives in the 1st bay and takes up two spots. A couple of weeks ago it was raining so my wife pulled in our pick-up into the 1st bay to load some food for a neighbor that was undergoing treatment for cancer. The pickup has a long bed so it sticks out but the wheels were far enough into the garage so it doesn’t block the garage sensors. I pulled into our driveway and the GPS Homelink triggered the garage door which was open to close onto our pickup’ tonneau cover. No damage occurred as the garage door has a safety reversing mechanism but the point can be dangerous so be careful.
 
  • Like
Reactions: forkee

puhiniho

Member
Jun 15, 2018
134
62
Seattle
I have found that adjusting the antenna and also angle the car as you backup to minimize the car from blocking the signal. I recalling someone creating a "cantenna" using card stock wrapped with foil on one side around the garage antenna to increase distance. Google could be your friend. Good Luck!
 
  • Like
Reactions: boaterva

posity

Member
Jun 30, 2018
185
331
Southern Oregon
I would suggest you set it to manual then experiment with locations and times to determine what works. Since the manual setting will automatically popup the homelink screen as you get near your home, the manual setting is still pretty darn convenient.

My homelink is not 100% reliable until I get within about 40 feet of my garage door, especially when in reverse (since the homelink transmitter is on the front bumper of the X). Sometimes I can get it to work when coming down the driveway from around 100 feet away, but it is not reliable. So the manual option is the best setting for me since I can just press it a second or third time if I see that the door is not opening. When backing in, some days I have the back bumper almost up to the garage door before it finally works.

This large variability in distance has been the case for all my cars that had homelink, not just the Tesla. I have 3 garage doors and they all have been highly variable from hour to hour since installed.
 

mxnym

Member
Mar 9, 2018
995
371
Bloomington, IN
It's not buggy in my experience; I've never had it trigger (or not trigger) unexpectedly. That being said it can be prone to user error as outlined above.
Never? I use auto-close and it is more likely to activate when I don't want it to than when I do (if I put the vehicle in park and then want to move it 3 inches without having done anything other than shift into and back out of park, the auto-close distance counter pops up every time, but in the morning, when I'm leaving for work and that hasn't happened, it MIGHT pop up once every 2 weeks).

Maybe you don't consider that a bug, but I experienced a definite bug when I first got my X (a bit over two years ago, hopefully they've fixed it by now). Basically, if auto-close is counting feet and you roll over the max distance, it goes back to 0 and triggers immediately. So, for instance, when it was on and I was backing out of the garage, it would start to count down from something like 20 feet, but if I started pulling back in, when it got up to 20 feet and I was still moving forward inside the garage door opening, it would trigger.
 

forkee

Member
Jul 20, 2018
772
961
Southern California
It's not buggy in my experience; I've never had it trigger (or not trigger) unexpectedly. That being said it can be prone to user error as outlined above.

give it time, it will fail you too lol

here are a few instances not related to user error

1. software "dings" making tone confirming signal sent to garage but door doesn't open
2. software "dings" making tone confirming signal sent to garage but door doesn't close
3. manually triggering homelink button, door doesn't open
4. manually triggering homelink button, door doesn't close
5. homelink flat out forgets garage code and i need to have it relearn signal
6. summon disconnects or fails halfway through moving car, autoclose will initiate thus closing garage door on car that isn't fully cleared.
7. instances where two teslas are coming or going, homelink signal does not differentiate open or close commands, garage will open as first car approaches but then close as second car also approaches or if two cars are leaving, it will start to close but then reopen.
8. geofence distance varies even after you set it

that's fine if you're not having any issues, and i am jealous of you, but the vast majority of users will run into at least one of my scenarios. any fail is a fail nonetheless and cannot be trusted to work flawlessly. i forgot how that saying went, but it has something to do with no one trusting a calculator that is accurate 99.999% of the time but will occasionally give you a wrong calculation.

We also back into our garage but have set homelink to only work with manual triggering and this has solved all the issues we had with the automatic signaling. Yes it's an extra step, but it's deliberate and we are still in control of it's operation. Because we can't trust it to close automatically when leaving, we used to look back and visually verify that it closes all the way. Since we have to double check anyways, pressing the button takes no extra time and we can do it right after we clear the door rather than waiting till we are halfway down the street just to hear it "ding" and nothing happens.
 
  • Informative
Reactions: pilotSteve

DoctorVenkman

Member
Jul 29, 2018
428
520
Los Angeles
Never? I use auto-close and it is more likely to activate when I don't want it to than when I do (if I put the vehicle in park and then want to move it 3 inches without having done anything other than shift into and back out of park, the auto-close distance counter pops up every time, but in the morning, when I'm leaving for work and that hasn't happened, it MIGHT pop up once every 2 weeks).

Maybe you don't consider that a bug, but I experienced a definite bug when I first got my X (a bit over two years ago, hopefully they've fixed it by now). Basically, if auto-close is counting feet and you roll over the max distance, it goes back to 0 and triggers immediately. So, for instance, when it was on and I was backing out of the garage, it would start to count down from something like 20 feet, but if I started pulling back in, when it got up to 20 feet and I was still moving forward inside the garage door opening, it would trigger.

I've had auto-close pop up when I'm just moving my car around in the driveway (usually to clean it), but that's not exactly a bug. How is the car supposed to know if I want to actually leave or if I'm just moving it around? In those situations I just hit "skip auto close".

It's never just randomly triggered for me, there's always been a lead up where the auto close notification comes up and I can see it counting down. It also consistently triggers when I am backing up out of my driveway. Maybe there's something off with your settings?
 
  • Like
Reactions: rush6410

DoctorVenkman

Member
Jul 29, 2018
428
520
Los Angeles
give it time, it will fail you too lol

here are a few instances not related to user error

1. software "dings" making tone confirming signal sent to garage but door doesn't open
2. software "dings" making tone confirming signal sent to garage but door doesn't close
3. manually triggering homelink button, door doesn't open
4. manually triggering homelink button, door doesn't close
5. homelink flat out forgets garage code and i need to have it relearn signal
6. summon disconnects or fails halfway through moving car, autoclose will initiate thus closing garage door on car that isn't fully cleared.
7. instances where two teslas are coming or going, homelink signal does not differentiate open or close commands, garage will open as first car approaches but then close as second car also approaches or if two cars are leaving, it will start to close but then reopen.
8. geofence distance varies even after you set it

that's fine if you're not having any issues, and i am jealous of you, but the vast majority of users will run into at least one of my scenarios. any fail is a fail nonetheless and cannot be trusted to work flawlessly. i forgot how that saying went, but it has something to do with no one trusting a calculator that is accurate 99.999% of the time but will occasionally give you a wrong calculation.

We also back into our garage but have set homelink to only work with manual triggering and this has solved all the issues we had with the automatic signaling. Yes it's an extra step, but it's deliberate and we are still in control of it's operation. Because we can't trust it to close automatically when leaving, we used to look back and visually verify that it closes all the way. Since we have to double check anyways, pressing the button takes no extra time and we can do it right after we clear the door rather than waiting till we are halfway down the street just to hear it "ding" and nothing happens.

I've been using it for over a year with no issues. It sounds like you have the distance set too far away and the signal is somehow getting lost, at least based on #1-4. Either that or the sensitivity on your garage receiver is too low.

#5 definitely seems like a bug. Never experienced that nor heard of it happening from anyone I know with a Tesla. Same thing with #6 but I never really use summon so can't comment.

#7 is most likely not a bug. No garage door I've ever heard of uses separate open/close signals; there's just one signal that triggers open or close based on the current position of the door.

#8 also does not seem like a bug, probably just poor GPS signal in your driveway. Are there any obstructions that might interfere with the signal?
 

forkee

Member
Jul 20, 2018
772
961
Southern California
not really. most of the signal errors we are literally right in front of the garage and just for the life of us can't get it to work. i hear the tone and even see the little sideways wifi looking logo blink as if it's sending the signal but nothing happens. we know the signal travels a couple houses down, as we can manually trigger it to open or close pretty far away so it's not a case of any interference, but having it automatically trigger is sporadic at best. this has been experienced in both of our Xs and even when i had the 3.

this is the door opener i have

Elite Series 8550WLB | WiFi Garage Door Opener | LiftMaster
 

SaniDel

Member
Aug 30, 2019
75
20
Greenville, Delaware
Have you tried lengthening the antenna on the garage door receiver? It’s just a piece of wire normally, add a foot and be sure it’s hanging straight down. More/enough of the signal may get there then from the transmitter in the car./QUOTE]

Good point, https://teslamotorsclub.com/tmc/members/boaterva.45599/!

Garage door opener manufacturers recognize this problem and sell solutions specific to their product. Typically it is called a ‘repeater’ that plugs into an electrical outlet in the garage ... the higher the better ... and has its own ‘antenna’ that is as you said a piece of wire, but typically longer than the ‘antenna’ on the opener. Having greater sensitivity it detects the signal from the vehicle when it is further away and relays that signal to the opener.

We bought a repeater specific for our opener, plugged it into the electrical outlet for the opener in the ceiling and straightened the ‘antenna’ ... we can open the garage door further than we can see it so it fully open by the time we pull into the driveway!
 

ajdelange

Active Member
Dec 10, 2018
1,077
541
Virginia/Quebec
homelink signal does not differentiate open or close commands, garage will open as first car approaches but then close as second car also approaches or if two cars are leaving, it will start to close but then reopen.
You don't need two Teslas to get bitten by this feature of Homelink. If you arrive home and someone has opened the garage door while you were gone the garage door will close as you approach. If you are fast enough you can hit the Skip button and all will be OK but usually it's too late and you have to manually activate (which really isn't any more trouble than tabbing the Skip button).

Yes, it can be quirky. More potentially damaging is the use of the geofencing to automatically fold your mirrors. I suppose I'll lose one eventually to a failure of that feature. On the whole I find the feature useful.

i forgot how that saying went, but it has something to do with no one trusting a calculator that is accurate 99.999% of the time but will occasionally give you a wrong calculation.
Way back when HP created the first commercial LED display and were trying to market them. To showcase their capabilities they designed a watch and a scientific calculator (HP-35). How cool was that then? About as cool as a battery BEV today. People don't change much. I could ill afford one of those just as I can ill afford an X today but nevertheless I got one. My fellow engineers went nuts. The slide rule went into the drawer and stayed there. The point of all this is that after they were out about a year and started to propagate throughout the engineering and scientific communities someone discovered that the keystroke sequence 2.02, Enter, e^x, Ln returned a number other than 2.02. It was the only combination of keystrokes that anyone ever found that tripped up that calculator so the reliability was more than five 9's. Nonetheless HP took them all back and fixed them.
 

boaterva

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Apr 2, 2016
7,573
3,746
Northern Virginia, USA
Most door openers have no ‘sense’ like a dumb light switch. All Homelink does is sense a ‘do it’ signal. If the door is already open, it has no way to tell it doesn’t need to be opened. So, yeah, you need to hit the skip button.

Or get an opener that has the brains to know an open from a close signal. All this has been discussed for years. :D
 
  • Like
Reactions: rush6410

mxnym

Member
Mar 9, 2018
995
371
Bloomington, IN
I've had auto-close pop up when I'm just moving my car around in the driveway (usually to clean it), but that's not exactly a bug. How is the car supposed to know if I want to actually leave or if I'm just moving it around? In those situations I just hit "skip auto close".

It's never just randomly triggered for me, there's always been a lead up where the auto close notification comes up and I can see it counting down. It also consistently triggers when I am backing up out of my driveway. Maybe there's something off with your settings?
Yes, I hit skip when that happens, and then it still says "Auto-Close Skipped" the next morning and won't close the door. You said you've "never had it trigger (or not trigger) unexpectedly." So it seems to me like if you've done that you'd have it "not trigger unexpectedly" the next morning. I guess you're saying your only definition of a homelink bug would be homelink triggering without a screen indication and tone?

I'm saying it triggered when the distance TO close went UP (apparently to 0) above the set distance instead of staying at the set distance or increasing the distance further. IOW, it went "I'm going to close in 15 feet... 16 feet... 17 feet... 18 feet... 19 feet... 20 feet... OK, I'm closing on your head NOW." When it should only close when it says, "I'm going to close in 4 feet... 3 feet... 2 feet... 1 foot... OK, I'm closing based on distance NOW." Yes, you can hit skip to prevent that, and I do now whether the behavior still exists or not, but the behavior is certainly a bug.
 

buzy32125

New Member
Jan 8, 2020
1
1
Portland, OR
I’ve also set mine to manual. But I now have a new issue. Before the last software update, when I put into reverse, the home link button use to be on the top left corner for me to close the garage door. Now that button is missing and I have to either open up the vehicle screen or close the reverse camera and open the rear camera manually to use the home link. Any advice on how to “fix” this? Did I mistakenly “unchecked” or changed an option?
 
  • Like
Reactions: dbldwn02

sacfan

Member
Sep 8, 2019
198
79
Sacramento
I too am having this problem. It is annoying. Should be a software fix. Aside from this one issue, the new rear camera view is a game changer for me.
I’ve also set mine to manual. But I now have a new issue. Before the last software update, when I put into reverse, the home link button use to be on the top left corner for me to close the garage door. Now that button is missing and I have to either open up the vehicle screen or close the reverse camera and open the rear camera manually to use the home link. Any advice on how to “fix” this? Did I mistakenly “unchecked” or changed an option?
 

Products we're discussing on TMC...

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top