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Model 3 Camper Mode without Internet Connection

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by CitizenM, Jul 2, 2018.

  1. CitizenM

    CitizenM New Member

    Jun 20, 2018
    About a month ago my 9-year old and I took the Model 3 car camping. Before we could go I had to find a way to put the car into “camping mode” to get fresh air in but keep the mosquitos out.

    Since the 2018.14 software update the climate control no longer turns off after 30 minutes if it was turned on through the app. But it requires that the car and the phone both have a network connection which isn’t available in many remote places where people like to go car camping. It will also use more battery compared to ventilation only because the HVAC system may initially have to cool the incoming air and later heat it as outsides temperatures drop during the night. But this will be perfect on a hot summer night (with Internet connection) when all you want is the A/C to stay comfortable, even though some people have reported that the climate control did not stay on reliably through the entire night.

    Instead of using the app I found out that applying just enough pressure to the brake pedal to turn the brake lights on while the car is in P and authenticated for driving will also keep the climate control on. To do the trick we used a 2 foot (61 cm) stick that fit perfectly between the brake pedal and the steering wheel. I set up a camper mode user profile to store the right steering wheel height. This kept the brake lights on all night. As a quick fix we used a tarp to cover them.

    I put the climate control system into manual, turned off the A/C, set the temperature to LO, fan to 1 and recirculate off. That gave us plenty of fresh air without it getting too cold inside with nighttime temperatures in the low 50s (10 - 15 °C).

    Our battery use was 3-4% per night or 330 W per hour. That’s high for running just the fan, the touch screen computer and the LED brake lights. It’s probably because of some phantom drain (about 1% per night) and mostly because various driving related systems were also running all night. But you can keep going like this for many nights without running out of juice.

    I hope that the Model 3 will eventually get the Model S “KEEP CLIMATE ON” option on the touchscreen. Unlike the app, it doesn’t limit your HVAC settings to temperature control only and you won’t need a network connection to set it. It will keep running reliably until the battery is down to 20%.

    • Helpful x 3
    • Informative x 1
    • Like x 1
  2. fseir

    fseir Member

    May 1, 2016
    Added bonus:


    Sustainable camping at its best! :D

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