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Model 3 two-thumb reboot fails: black screen

CharleyBC

Active Member
Jun 28, 2019
1,590
1,812
Talent, OR
We got home late last night from a long road trip. Nothing remarkable to report.

This morning I went out to the car and the display on the screen was hung. It wouldn't respond to any touch anywhere. So I did the usual two-thumb reboot, holding the buttons for about ten seconds until the screen went black. And I waited for the Tesla logo. And waited, and waited. Still black. And I mean completely black--no UI elements at all.

I remembered folks saying that a reboot while pressing the brake was some sort of deeper reboot (though I also remember others refuting that), so I tried that too. Nothing.

The car isn't completely dead. When I open the door, the AC starts up normally, for example. Looking at the Tesla app on my phone, even though it says "Last seen 15 hours ago," it correctly animates the opening and closing of the door. So in fact the app has some connectivity to the car.

One maybe clue: the last few days of our trip, we had a little orange down arrow in the upper right of the screen, which I think means it was telling us there's a software update to download. When we got home, the car presumably connected to WiFi again, and may have been doing the download. It did not get to the point of asking permission to install the update.

Any ideas? Is there some sort of bigger reboot I can try? Thanks for any help!!!
 
The download shouldn't be an issue. the installation requires manual intervention. If you didn't start it through the mobile app, it's not done. If your mobile app doesn't show an up to date status the car probably doesn't connect to the internet properly. I would suggest a service call.

EDIT: I would have suggested a shutdown but you don't have a screen to perform it. A manual disconnection of everything could be done but I personally wouldn't try that.
 

CharleyBC

Active Member
Jun 28, 2019
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Talent, OR
The download shouldn't be an issue. the installation requires manual intervention. If you didn't start it through the mobile app, it's not done. If your mobile app doesn't show an up to date status the car probably doesn't connect to the internet properly. I would suggest a service call.

EDIT: I would have suggested a shutdown but you don't have a screen to perform it. A manual disconnection of everything could be done but I personally wouldn't try that.
Thanks for the feedback.

I just called Tesla roadside, and a very helpful Gus talked me through a few things, like trying to start the car via my app, which I didn't even know was a thing. Anyway, no progress. He's forwarding it to mobile service, hoping to avoid a long tow. (There's no Tesla service here in Southern Oregon, so we have to go hours away.)

This totally feels like software, like a "bigger" reboot will bring it back. :)
 
Thanks! We replaced the 12V last August, so it should be good.
Unfortunately, that means your problem isn't the most common one.

Regarding the yellow down arrow you saw, that might have been for the recent navigation data update, which automatically installs after downloading (no confirmation required). I don't recall the exact version number, but if it starts with 2022, you have the new one. Of course, you can't tell if your touchscreen doesn't work. 🙁
 

CharleyBC

Active Member
Jun 28, 2019
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Talent, OR
So, I just found a video about how to disconnect both 12V and high-power (under back seat) from the car. The HP part looks unexpectedly easy and safe. And the 12V is pretty much like old cars of bygone days. That would certainly reboot everything, I'd think. Anyone try this? Did you and your car both live to tell the tale?
 

Adam3

Member
Oct 4, 2015
944
1,261
USA
So, I just found a video about how to disconnect both 12V and high-power (under back seat) from the car. The HP part looks unexpectedly easy and safe. And the 12V is pretty much like old cars of bygone days. That would certainly reboot everything, I'd think. Anyone try this? Did you and your car both live to tell the tale?
Perfectly safe
 
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CharleyBC

Active Member
Jun 28, 2019
1,590
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Talent, OR
You can drive the car without the screen, you wouldn't need a tow. Obviously you won't see how fast you're going... be careful.
Not so in our case. I tried. Flipping into either R or D did nothing--the car wouldn't move. The roadside service guy had that idea too. But thanks for the input! (Consequently, I wonder how to get it into neutral if this does come to needing a tow. The car is currently nose-in in our garage.)
 
As others mentioned, I would try a full shutdown. It's safe to do, you don't actually touch any high voltage stuff, that connector under the rear seat is actually a low voltage component that just supplies the HV contactors. I did it a few times while installing my trunk 12v, the only tool required is the 10mm socket to disconnect the negative terminal from the battery in the frunk.

The video linked above is spot-on for the process. The one SUPER IMPORTANT thing to note is start by rolling down all the windows, and do not close the frunk or any doors before starting this process. Once the power is completely cut, you won't be able to re-open anything beyond the emergency latches on the front doors.
 
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CharleyBC

Active Member
Jun 28, 2019
1,590
1,812
Talent, OR
Well, gang, here's the latest.

First thing this morning, my wife and I disconnected the 12V, popped the rear seat, and unplugged the connector for the HV. As @rbatch mentioned above, the plug only has small pins, so obviously hot the actual HV connection. But it did shut down the AC which had been running uncontrollably for the past day. I let it sit for 20 or 30 minutes in case any capacitors wanted to discharge or anything like that. I reconnected stuff, with great hope that the computer would wake up.

It didn't.

So AAA just towed our beloved (though no longer trusted so much) Wattney away on the first leg of her journey to the service center in Bend, OR. We hope she'll get there tomorrow.

Pro user tip. About a year ago we had a brief scare of a non-operational car (different symptoms than this time), which made us realize how vulnerable we were in terms of towing. If you live close to a Tesla SC, no sweat. But a quick visit to the Tesla Find-Us map shows SCs are pretty sparse in many areas. Bend is our closest, at 184 miles. So we upgraded our AAA membership to Premier, which includes up to 200 miles towing. Today that looks like one of our better decisions recently!
 

CharleyBC

Active Member
Jun 28, 2019
1,590
1,812
Talent, OR
Update.

Once the towing company told me when they'd get the car to Bend, I was able to book a service visit without risking the $100 Tesla change fee. Very shortly thereafter, Sam in Bend phoned with a simple thing to try that they have seen before cause my symptoms. Unplug the USB drive and reboot. It might not be our problem, but it's easy to eliminate. And I'm mentioning it here in case it helps anyone else in the future, even if it doesn't help us.

Apparently the USB can get corrupted.

Our car is now in Medford (20 minutes away) awaiting the long-haul tow to Bend. Some friends are coming shortly to give me a ride to visit the car and try this out. Stay tuned!
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Moderator
Nov 28, 2018
15,930
20,719
Riverside Co. CA
Update.

Once the towing company told me when they'd get the car to Bend, I was able to book a service visit without risking the $100 Tesla change fee. Very shortly thereafter, Sam in Bend phoned with a simple thing to try that they have seen before cause my symptoms. Unplug the USB drive and reboot. It might not be our problem, but it's easy to eliminate. And I'm mentioning it here in case it helps anyone else in the future, even if it doesn't help us.

Apparently the USB can get corrupted.

Our car is now in Medford (20 minutes away) awaiting the long-haul tow to Bend. Some friends are coming shortly to give me a ride to visit the car and try this out. Stay tuned!

I have seen posts about corrupt USB causing the screen to be black, but I havent seen that as a symptom for not being able to boot the car at all, or use the car.
 
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