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How do we “tinker” with our Teslas?

Gvardaman

Member
Oct 30, 2020
95
18
So. California
Hello,
I just got my Model 3 (and I love it!) but I started to wonder, how do I upgrade it?
With past cars, I have also made changes and upgrades, including adding parts from newer models or other compatible vehicles. Many cars are pre-wired for options, so adding a cd changer, homelink garage door opener or a factory alarm was easy.
Now, with the model 3, I’d like to add fog lights and maybe upgrade the sound system, but how?
I can see the listing under upgrades to purchase the rear seat heaters, which I take to mean “turn on” the rear seat heaters, but I don’t know if I will ever care about that enough to justify the cost of the upgrade.
I have seen some sound deadening kits on Amazon, has anyone tried to install these? Are they effective?
I also see led bulb upgrades for sale, does that mean the stock lighting is not led? That seems odd, since they are so energy efficient.
Anyway, I realized that I can’t tweak stuff as easily on this car, since it will “tell” on me! Also without a dashboard or a service manual, I am not even sure where to start!

what kinds of changes have you made to your Tesla?

thanks, very interested in seeing what people do to customize their cars!
 

Marius A

Member
Apr 2, 2019
609
472
NORWAY
Hello,
I just got my Model 3 (and I love it!) but I started to wonder, how do I upgrade it?
With past cars, I have also made changes and upgrades, including adding parts from newer models or other compatible vehicles. Many cars are pre-wired for options, so adding a cd changer, homelink garage door opener or a factory alarm was easy.
Now, with the model 3, I’d like to add fog lights and maybe upgrade the sound system, but how?
I can see the listing under upgrades to purchase the rear seat heaters, which I take to mean “turn on” the rear seat heaters, but I don’t know if I will ever care about that enough to justify the cost of the upgrade.
I have seen some sound deadening kits on Amazon, has anyone tried to install these? Are they effective?
I also see led bulb upgrades for sale, does that mean the stock lighting is not led? That seems odd, since they are so energy efficient.
Anyway, I realized that I can’t tweak stuff as easily on this car, since it will “tell” on me! Also without a dashboard or a service manual, I am not even sure where to start!

what kinds of changes have you made to your Tesla?

thanks, very interested in seeing what people do to customize their cars!
There are tons of threads about these things. I recommend you explore the sub forums and search.
For example: There's a dedicated thread on enabling extra speakers and installing a sub in the SR
 

Pemple

Member
Sep 10, 2020
101
155
US
Also, check out YouTube, you’ll find loads of people showing off their favorite modifications.
 

KenC

Active Member
Sep 4, 2018
3,498
3,180
Maine
There’s already a thread asking how much people have spent. Someone spent $70k on upgrades!
 

dmurphy

Woof.
Dec 7, 2018
3,481
4,687
New Jersey - Morris County
Congrats on your new car!

The most amazing thing about a Tesla is that it fully automates what you’re talking about ....

About every month or so, the car upgrades itself! Those software updates that Tesla sends down do amazing things.

I’ve had mine about a year and a half now, and the list of stuff it does now, that it didn’t do when I bought it, is a mile long.

Really different way to see things, but incredible all the same.

... but if you’re looking for some kind of physical improvement, these are probably my favorite of all; Ultra-Bright LED Lights - Model 3

The factory LED lights are kinda dim. These replacements are easy but make a world of difference, especially in the trunk and footwell areas!
 

Rod C H

Member
Nov 20, 2020
11
11
Excelsior, MN
The stock front foot well lights are very dim. It's inexpensive & easy to upgrade to brighter lights. I also upgraded the puddle lights in the doors to projector type that shine the Tesla T. They look cool!
Puddle T.jpg
 

Gvardaman

Member
Oct 30, 2020
95
18
So. California
Great, thanks!
So, speakers, sound deadening (does nothing or very little).
LED interior light upgrade.
Puddle lights.
Engineering degree.

As for searching, if I don’t know what I am searching for, it can be a wild goose chase. I am not trying to spend the most, but I might not think to look for a rear sway bar from a performance model if I hadn’t seen one in the sales threads.

Also, I love this car! I got the most basic model (with FSD) and it still is awesome. It is also the first car my wife has been really enthusiastic about (both in terms of the car and the driving!) That is a real feat.

The puddle lights look great in daylight, I am surprised. For the interior footwell lights, are the stock lights LED but just dim or are they actual incandescent bulbs?
I also ordered some leather seat covers. They say they will allow the airbags to deploy and I like protecting the actual seats. Plus these may be a slight upgrade as they are actual leather (made from really mean cows who died of old age, I checked.)
I planned to pull the wheel covers off and put on center caps and lug covers, but the wheel covers are better looking than I expected. So, that will come after they get curbed or I get tired of the look.
I am reticent to make changes that adversely affect range. At least until I get the home charger installed.

Edit: software engineering, agreed!
 

Black306

Member
Oct 14, 2019
533
759
Sacramento
maybe that would be a Super Capacitor?
Doubt it’ll be easy, but it would be cool if the battery voltage could be stepped up and the motor/inverter could take it. A BAP steps up typical automotive voltage from 12-14v into 17v to increase capacity in a fuel pump. In RC cars, an ESC/motor can usually a range of voltages (ex 1S-3S; 7.4v-22.2v) to make them faster.

It would be cool if a Tesla could go from ~350v nominal to say ~425v nominal either by a step up converter (Nominal Overdrive System; LOL) or reconfiguring the battery for increased voltage/decreased capacity.
 

upkerry14

Member
Dec 29, 2019
88
174
oakland ca
Well, the FIRST thing I did was upgrade the sound system. Then a few cosmetic things (I did not chrome delete it) like some front light frame thingies and tinted the windows, bought some rear seat pouches for keeping a few things in the back, a spare tire and tools, some battery powered "flares" with a yellow safety vest, upgraded my AAA (even though I know Tesla has road service -I'm always a glass half full kinda guy) since I'm a retired paramedic firefighter I have a med kit in the trunk (BLS of course), a cooler for the frunk and a spare coat/sweater because my wife is always underestimating the weather and forgets to bring a jacket!
 
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Gvardaman

Member
Oct 30, 2020
95
18
So. California
Nice. I am not sure about how to go about upgrading the sound system....

As for the super capacitors, I had the same thought, hitting the motors with a timed burst over over-voltage. I was thinking it would work like a nitrous burst.
 

NickFie

Member
Sep 28, 2017
529
570
Near Philadelphia, PA
You can also upgrade the suspension. Mountain Pass Performance (MPP) and several other shops cater to Model 3. While their focus is on the Performance model, many upgrades help the other trim levels, too.
 

Gvardaman

Member
Oct 30, 2020
95
18
So. California
The ball upgrade is great, have you noticed an increase in road noise?

For the suspension stuff, since my wife also drives the m3, I know she would be miserable with the stuff I would like (better handling, stiffer ride)
 

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