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Locked out of Model S

I’ve been locked out of my 2015 Model S five times now. First time 18 months ago, fortunately in the club carpark. No mobile connection either. Cleared after 2 hours. Same in July, same place. Tesla Support couldn’t access the car either. Now it’s occurred 3 more times, twice at the same place, but with a mobile connection and once in several places in town and on return home. These times the App worked for access, but I got a Key Not Detected warning trying to drive. Fortunately the App Start function worked. The batteries in the keyfobs are good/new. We checked with a RF scanning receiver. There was no interference on 433.955MHz and the keyfobs gave a good signal. I've just collected the car from Tesla Service. They can’t find anything wrong. This is an intermittent fault and if there is no mobile connection the car is completely immobilised. I've seen mention of problems due to the 12V battery ion other forums. Service say it doesn't appear to be an issue here. The battery was replaced a year ago anyway and since the App works normally it seems unlikely to be a battery problem. TeslaFi has been flagged up by Service as a possible cause of interference, but I turned logging off and still had a recurrence of the problem, which always seems to clear itself after an hour for so. Has anyone else had anything like this?


Active Member
Jul 2, 2020
If you have a Samsung or some other phones charging in the cradle, Key not Detected is fairly normal while driving. You have some further issues, however. Do you have any electronics in and around the 12V accessory plug, like a USB hard drive, or a high powered USB accessory plug? In any event, anytime the key fob is not working, it should let you unlock the car if you place the key fob in the emergency position described in the manual at the passenger wiper lower windshield location specified -- even with a dead battery in the key fob. This should eliminate all interference possibilities. PS - I assume this also applies to pre-facelift models.

"To unlock Model S (and disable the security alarm) using the key, first position the key near the base of the passenger side windshield wiper. Then press the front door handle on the right side of the vehicle. If Model S doesn't unlock, try adjusting the position of the key and try again. The key must be in the correct position for the vehicle to unlock. Note: The following illustration assumes a left
hand drive (LHD) vehicle. On a right hand drive (RHD) vehicle, the locations are mirrored.

To drive Model S after gaining access to the cabin, place the bottom of the key against the center console, immediately below the 12V power outlet, then press and hold the brake pedal to start Model S.

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