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Message: Car needs service, may not restart”. Towed by Tesla Roadside Assistance

More Cowbell

Member
Mar 7, 2019
17
17
Naples, FL
Today (Saturday) the battery failed on my Tesla 3 near my home in SW Florida near Naples. The car completely died in the parking lot of a grocery store. My wife got the following messages: "Car needs service", May not restart". Then it died. 9,000 miles on it and no prior problems. No power at all. The nearest repair shop is 110 miles away. Called Tesla roadside assistance and they sent a wrecker and picked it up. Local sales dealer would not loan me a car. How do I get around? Help-line offered Uber vouchers, which will not help. Disappointed that the Tesla dealer or Tesla corporate will not loan us a car to use or redeliver the car to me when it is repaired, since it is a 110 mile drive to pick it up. They are closed for the weekend so I won't know the diagnosis until Monday.
 

Swampgator

Active Member
Apr 27, 2016
1,562
3,514
Florida
Today (Saturday) the battery failed on my Tesla 3 near my home in SW Florida near Naples. The car completely died in the parking lot of a grocery store. My wife got the following messages: "Car needs service", May not restart". Then it died. 9,000 miles on it and no prior problems. No power at all. The nearest repair shop is 110 miles away. Called Tesla roadside assistance and they sent a wrecker and picked it up. Local sales dealer would not loan me a car. How do I get around? Help-line offered Uber vouchers, which will not help. Disappointed that the Tesla dealer or Tesla corporate will not loan us a car to use or redeliver the car to me when it is repaired, since it is a 110 mile drive to pick it up. They are closed for the weekend so I won't know the diagnosis until Monday.
Call Sarasota on monday. If they need to keep the car for more than a day, they will arrange for you to have a loaner car. I've had no issues with either Tampa or Sarasota service centers.
Also, your thread title is misleading. You have no idea why the car would not start. You have no idea if the HV battery is dead. My guess on the issue? You have a dead 12v battery. But please do keep us updated. Looking forward to post #2
 

boaterva

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Apr 2, 2016
7,575
3,815
Northern Virginia, USA
Yep, 12V batteries fail all the time but usually give warning. Be interesting to see the cause of this and if it’s just a new 12V should be fixed the same day.

Not sure about the loaner as I’ve not gotten one in recent visits although Sarasota may be different.
 

More Cowbell

Member
Mar 7, 2019
17
17
Naples, FL
Call Sarasota on monday. If they need to keep the car for more than a day, they will arrange for you to have a loaner car. I've had no issues with either Tampa or Sarasota service centers.
Also, your thread title is misleading. You have no idea why the car would not start. You have no idea if the HV battery is dead. My guess on the issue? You have a dead 12v battery. But please do keep us updated. Looking forward to post #2
You are correct that I have no idea why the car wouldn't start. Most owners wouldn't. The car only has 9,000 miles on it. I hope you are correct that it's the 12v battery but I just don't know ultil it is diagnosed. Regardless of the seriousness of the problem the car won't run and it was towed to the closet dealer in Dania Beach FL , 110 miles away, and I'll have to find a way to pick it up. I would expect Tesla to be more supportive when such things occur.
 
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SSedan

Active Member
Jul 24, 2017
2,948
2,589
Greenville Wisconsin
The message seems similar to one I got in my high mileage S when the battery heater failed.
Your car doesn't have this part BUT my understanding is that any high voltage system fault will stop the 12volt from charging because for safety the car will not energize the high voltage system if any fault is detected.

Fault could be almost anything, even rodent damage as they begin to move more with the season change, which granted it's extreme for you but I suspect changing enough to change animal habits.

I think this will be either sudden 12volt death or a fault stopping the 12volt from recharging. I fully understand your aggregation been there, but settle down and try a little honey with the SC tomorrow morning.

I currently have a loaner ad my 2014 S with 91k miles is 3 hours 170miles away near Chicago for front suspension work and while they pre-ordered expected parts one caught them off guard.

Last year I had a problem further from home but near Minneapolis and they would not give me a loaner because I was more than 200miles away. Hopefully you are inside the loaner circle for your location.
 

Swampgator

Active Member
Apr 27, 2016
1,562
3,514
Florida
You are correct that I have no idea why the car wouldn't start. Most owners wouldn't. The car only has 9,000 miles on it. I hope you are correct that it's the 12v battery but I just don't know ultil it is diagnosed. Regardless of the seriousness of the problem the car won't run and it was towed to the closet dealer in Dania Beach FL , 110 miles away, and I'll have to find a way to pick it up. I would expect Tesla to be more supportive when such things occur.
You are correct that I have no idea why the car wouldn't start. Most owners wouldn't. The car only has 9,000 miles on it. I hope you are correct that it's the 12v battery but I just don't know ultil it is diagnosed. Regardless of the seriousness of the problem the car won't run and it was towed to the closet dealer in Dania Beach FL , 110 miles away, and I'll have to find a way to pick it up. I would expect Tesla to be more supportive when such things occur.
Let me ask you a question: If you had a Mercedes, and it broke down on a Sunday when the dealer was closed, what would they do? I would imagine nothing until Monday, but I have not owned one so maybe they would have arranges a loaner car for you on Sunday?
I'm not sure what you want on a weekend when the service center is closed?
You could have waited until Tuesday and mobile service could have looked at it at your home, but you needed it taken care of right away, so....

BTW, thank you for changing the title.
 

More Cowbell

Member
Mar 7, 2019
17
17
Naples, FL
Let me ask you a question: If you had a Mercedes, and it broke down on a Sunday when the dealer was closed, what would they do? I would imagine nothing until Monday, but I have not owned one so maybe they would have arranges a loaner car for you on Sunday?
I'm not sure what you want on a weekend when the service center is closed?
You could have waited until Tuesday and mobile service could have looked at it at your home, but you needed it taken care of right away, so....

BTW, thank you for changing the title.
The difference is that Mercedes dealers are everywhere close by and I wouldn't have to drive 110 miles. I would not expect anything to be done on a weekend from either dealer and I didn't need it taken care of right away. The Tesla service hotline diagnosed it from remote as an "isolation high voltage" issue and recommended that it be examined by a Tesla mechanic as the potential problem may be out of the scope of the mobile service since it may have to be put on a lift to diagnose the problem.
 

tm3p-fan

Member
Sep 19, 2019
80
24
FL
Yes, do share what happened. Today being Veterans Day, some people take advantage of the extra day from the weekend, so, hopefully you will hear something tomorrow.
 

More Cowbell

Member
Mar 7, 2019
17
17
Naples, FL
Update 11-13-19:
Final diagnosis was "rear drive unit failure". The part has been ordered and it will take about a week. I note in this website that this same problem has happened to other owners so if you ever get the message "Car needs service; may not restart" I suggest you take it seriously. Although this is a great car, problems do occur occasionally.

Kudos to Dania Beach, FL Tesla (Thanks, Adriana!) for the way they handled this: Tesla towed my car 110 miles to the nearest service on a weekend, provided a rental car, gave me a prompt diagnosis and periodic updates and they are trying to minimize any inconvenience.

Since there are many Tesla owners here in Naples, and the number is rapidly increasing, it should not be long before they open a service center here, as well as in other major cities.
 

Swampgator

Active Member
Apr 27, 2016
1,562
3,514
Florida
Update 11-13-19:
Final diagnosis was "rear drive unit failure". The part has been ordered and it will take about a week. I note in this website that this same problem has happened to other owners so if you ever get the message "Car needs service; may not restart" I suggest you take it seriously. Although this is a great car, problems do occur occasionally.

Kudos to Dania Beach, FL Tesla (Thanks, Adriana!) for the way they handled this: Tesla towed my car 110 miles to the nearest service on a weekend, provided a rental car, gave me a prompt diagnosis and periodic updates and they are trying to minimize any inconvenience.

Since there are many Tesla owners here in Naples, and the number is rapidly increasing, it should not be long before they open a service center here, as well as in other major cities.
Glad to hear they took care of you. Sad to hear you had a fairly rare drive unit failure though. Yes, I'm in Fort Myers myself and rumor is that FM or Estero will get a service center within the next year.
 

More Cowbell

Member
Mar 7, 2019
17
17
Naples, FL
Got my car back yesterday from the service shop in Dania Beach, FL and all is well. The rear drive unit failed and was replaced, which took about 1 1/2 weeks total. We have about 9500 miles on the car and, although this is a rare occurrence, be aware that this part is not something they keep in stock and it has to be ordered. Tesla took care of us and provided a rental car. We're still in Tesla's 95% + approval group but mechanical faults do occasionally happen.
 
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Ken43

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Feb 27, 2018
51
44
Florida
I have a very similar story to "More Cowbell", so I won't start a new thread. But I will post it here to warn others that if you get the "Car needs service, may not restart" message, the message is serious and the car indeed not restart eventually.

Long story, so I'll just give the highlights, 2018 LR RWD Model 3.

In October, 2019, around 15,000 miles, I began getting the error message "Car needs service, may not restart". Randomly. Car would always restart although it sometimes went through a reboot process during the restart with the high voltage contactors clacking repeatedly.

Over the next six weeks I visited the service center 3 times and various things were tried. Error continued. Was told that they may have to replace the rear drive unit, but to keep driving the car as it wouldn't strand me.

Unfortunately, Got stranded on a Sunday night at a rest area 6 weeks after the initial error message. Car would not restart. Tesla Roadside flatbedded the car (warranty , at Tesla's expense to a third party towing company) to the nearest service center, 5 hours away. Uber voucher home. 2 days later car is ready. Rear Drive unit replaced. They don't say (probably don't know?) what exactly happened with drive unit.

Until the car wound't drive, Tesla (and me) did not feel the urgency to fix the problem. I would have initially rather left the car at the service center and gotten a loaner or a rental car till they fixed the situation. However, a loaner or a Tesla paid rental car was not an option (I asked).

Good luck to others in similar situations.
 

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