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Model 3 + Snow Exposure = Frustration

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by Amendale, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. Amendale

    Amendale Member

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    Let me preface this by saying the Model 3 is a great car and I love it...on most days. That being said, I was quite frustrated last night after I had a day of snow during the morning, followed by melting temperatures, followed by a very cold evening. I had to move the car off the street and into my driveway but everything on the car was frozen! There was not too much visible ice on the car, but the door handle, windows, and charge port were frozen shut. Upon being unable to get inside, I turned the heating on in the car with the app to defrost it. 30 min later, still frozen! I finally managed to get the door handle to budge with some banging around but as a result the door came open while the window was still frozen. Now I couldn't close the door in -15C (5F) weather! I did my best to close the door as much as I could and cranked the heat to full blast to try and thaw the window. While waiting I found a suggestion of someone recommending to use a credit card between the window and bottom seal to separate it from the ice. I did that and definitely felt a lot of ice inside the door under the seal that was keeping the window frozen. Unfortunately this did not immediately resolve the issue, the window still would not go down. After 20 more minutes of defrosting the window finally came loose and I was able to close the door. Good, now I can go home and relax right? WRONG! Tried to plug the car in to charge, since nearly 1hr of full blast heat almost killed the little charge I had left, but the charge port would not come open due to freezing. I pried it open, but there was ice inside of the charge port prohibiting me from inserting the charger! 10 min later of trying to chip and clear the ice away with a screw driver it finally went in and started charging.

    This car preforms great in above freezing temps, but WOW what a frustrating experience. Anyone else experiencing this? I was expecting having occasional issues with this that could be resolved by 10min of preheating since I knew this was a frameless design, but not to this extent! Seems the Model 3 could use some better weather sealing, or stronger window actuators.
     
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  2. Garlan Garner

    Garlan Garner Well-Known Member

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    Simple.
    [​IMG]
    Walmart $6
     
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  3. Amendale

    Amendale Member

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    I have a similar product (silicone lube) that I've applied around the top seals of the windows. However my problem seems to be the windows freezing inside of the door under the bottom seal. I've read that applying the lubricant at this location will cause large streaking on the windows every time you open/close them for a long time to come...
     
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  4. Xenoilphobe

    Xenoilphobe Active Member

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  5. Amendale

    Amendale Member

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    Doesn't seem very energy efficient to keep a car constantly heated. Already applied lube on the top seals. I'm thinking maybe I can keep some thin ruler type object in the trunk for separating the ice under the seal for these situations.
     
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  6. mswlogo

    mswlogo Active Member

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    Make sure you double tap defrost button so that it glows red and not a single tap that glows blue.

    I’ve been lucky to not get caught in an ice covered model 3. I read enough to know it’s a challenge.
     
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  7. North75

    North75 Member

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    Car cover?
    Might be a little bit of a PITA to get on and off, but certainly faster than an hour of not very effective defrosting
     
  8. Atari2600

    Atari2600 Member

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    Would a car cover help?
     
  9. ricohman

    ricohman Member

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    Car covers and lubricants are no way to deal with winter. And Toronto is the banana belt compared to where I live.
    Keep it indoors.
     
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  10. Amendale

    Amendale Member

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    Indoors is ideal, although not always possible.
     
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  11. boiler81

    boiler81 Member

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    #11 boiler81, Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
    Relative to ice in the charge port, watch Tesla Model 3 Owner Club youtube video - "Tesla Service Talks Canada".(16:30)
    In the Tesla Service presentation there's mention of charge port redesign which drains off moisture better. The new ports aren't in stock yet but Tesla will be replacing the ports of those who have problems and take into Service. Apparently Canada's getting priority on parts due to cold climate.
     
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  12. ricohman

    ricohman Member

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    I realize that. And I realize that the Model 3 is not built for a Saskatchewan winter and that it is what it is.
    I have other vehicles to drive in the winter but some people may have only one car. And if you have only one car I would not recommend this vehicle for where I live. Just not practical. But neither are some of my other vehicles in the winter.
    I'm going to Calgary to drive one in the coming month. I hope it is reasonably warm there.
     
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  13. Amendale

    Amendale Member

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    Im surprised Tesla cars are so popular in Norway as it would seem it is not a very practical winter car.
     
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  14. Sophias_dad

    Sophias_dad Member

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    I'm surprised there's not a silicone rubber doodad already in production(either Tesla or aftermarket) to cover the charge socket.
     
  15. ricohman

    ricohman Member

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    Norway has very mild winters.
    SK is more like Siberia.
     
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  16. Amendale

    Amendale Member

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    Good to hear they are addressing the charge port issue. Hopefully they will do something about the handle and windows next.
     
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  17. KJD

    KJD Supporting Member

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    Yes you can tell that the Model 3 was designed by a bunch of people that grew up in coastal areas that never see snow or freezing rain.

    With that said the next obvious question is do you have a garage you could be parking in ?
     
  18. Amendale

    Amendale Member

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    I do have a garage, but the Model 3 is not always in there because we only have a 1 car garage and two cars. Also I am not always parking at home. I understand that garage is ideal, but sometimes the car gets exposed to the Canadian winter elements nonetheless. It shouldn't be a necessity to always keep a car indoors in order to keep it accessible.
     
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  19. Amendale

    Amendale Member

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    Doesn't seem too mild. But yes more mild than SK. Still, not mild enough to avoid freezing.
    upload_2019-1-12_0-25-28.png
     
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  20. StealthP3D

    StealthP3D Member

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    I've never had a car that, under those conditions, would not freeze up and make entry difficult. Melting snow followed by a hard freeze is impossible to design around. Volvo, Ford, VW, it doesn't matter, they all freeze shut under those difficult conditions. Sometimes some hard pounding with the heel of your closed fist will do the trick (but I can understand being reluctant to pound a car you typically only baby). I've even resorted to peeing on the doors when returning from a backcountry ski trip and there was no hot water or electricity handy. No, it wan't a Tesla, fortunately, Tesla's don't have keyholes. Because keyholes are the really stubborn thing to get unfrozen.

    I cringe when people act like the Model 3 (or any Tesla for that matter) is somehow different from other cars because the designers are all from "California". Some people even pretend they are all from "Southern California". It makes no sense, Tesla is composed of people from all over and are no more likely to freeze shut than any other car - it's mostly a function of the conditions, not the car.
     
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