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Model X 12v Battery Replacement Frustration (long-winded)

BrianKH

Member
Sep 26, 2017
48
62
Fort Lauderdale
We have a Model X that is a little more than 1 year old with less than 5,000 miles on it. On November 1, we received the dreaded flashing notification on the monitor that our 12v battery needed replaced with a caution that we should not drive the vehicle until it was replaced. We immediately scheduled an appointment through the app with the first available mobile appointment being on November 11. We were not at all happy with that gap in time but felt like we had little choice.

The next day, November 2, we received a text message from Tesla asking for any additional information or photos we may have that may help them prepare for the mobile appointment. I responded that the vehicle is inoperable and we would greatly appreciate an appointment that is sooner in time. No response at all from Tesla. Eight days later, on November 10, we heard again from Tesla via text message. This time to inform us that the ordered part (the battery) would not arrive in time for the appointment. The new ETA for the battery was November 13. responded with a text asking if we could get the vehicle to the Dania Beach facility so as to get the battery replaced sooner. Again, no response at all from Tesla.

On November 12, we noticed the app had cleared our appointment as it no longer showed when you went into the app. I sent yet another text asking Tesla to at least confirm we were still on their books for an appointment. Again, no response.

Stewing overnight about the lack of customer service, on November 13, I proceeded to go online and chatted with customer support through Tesla's website. The individual I chatted with was very professional but offered me little in the way of help other than suggest I should call Roadside Service as that may escalate the problem.

I contact Roadside Service that same day, November 13. The person I spoke with could not have been nicer. She was sympathetic to my concerns and tried to contact the Dania Beach facility while she put me on hold. When she was not able to reach someone at that facility, she took my number and said she would call me back once she had talked with the service department in Dania Beach. Sure enough, she called me about a half hour later -- but, not with good news. Apparently, there is a 12v battery shortage and there is nothing she can do for me at the moment. She told me the Supervisor at the Dania Beach facility would be calling me that day, November 13, or Monday, November 16 to talk personally with me.

It is now November 17, and I have heard nothing further from Tesla. Not a peep. I have $112k white sled parked in my driveway with no understanding as to when it may be repaired. After more than two weeks without a drivable vehicle, one would think the right thing to do by the customer is to call and at least offer a loaner. We are fortunate in that this is not our only vehicle but based on my experience, I would strongly advise against any one owning a Tesla as their only vehicle. The price would suggest the Model X is a luxury vehicle. The customer service is more akin to a Yugo. We have been all in for Tesla - two Model 3's and this Model X with a Plaid reservation. This makes me wonder whether I should keep my Plaid reservation.
 
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Richbot

Member
Oct 16, 2020
261
166
STL
This makes me want to start advertising my services to Tesla owners in my area. Two weeks out of service for a dang battery. On an EV. The jokes would write themselves if they weren't so ridiculous. Where's that LLC paperwork. Wouldn't any Group 34 battery, or really, any 12v battery that physically fits in the space get you by in a pinch? Yet they let owners twist in the wind like this? Ridiculous

Fun fact: Atlas, one of the Tesla OEM battery suppliers, is a Hankook brand. Hankook is a Korean tire company. Samsung and LG are both having traction battery cell supply recall/stop sale issues impacting various other company's EV's. Rough all over, it seems
 
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Les236

Member
Jan 20, 2018
180
92
Kissimmee, FL, Boston, MA
Let us know if this is covered under warranty. I hope so. We have 2+ years and 42,000 miles on our MX and so far no 12V problems. I see the AGM replacement batteries are $200-260, so would probably change it myself if I had a problem and couldn't wait. Musk admits there is something wrong with the 12V batteries especially in the MS and MX and says there is supposed to be a software update coming to help. Do you keep the X plugged in? I just found out the 12V isn't charged if the X is left sitting and not plugged in, which I was doing all of the time.
 
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Ames

Member
May 27, 2013
659
376
Abu Dhabi, UAE
My 2019 Raven X (manufactured in July) gave me a 12v warning in December - it was delivered last day of September.

Also happened to my sister's '18 X100D car right in the middle of pandemic border restrictions (Abu Dhabi and Dubai, UAE). I managed to get Tesla to courier a replacement 12v battery from Dubai and changed it myself. It took about 45 minutes thanks to a couple of excellent YouTube videos.

Obviously in your case you don't have the same restrictions like only 1 dealer for the entire country, or any restrictions to speak of related to the pandemic in FL...so no excuse!
 

RRM998

Supporting Member
Oct 1, 2016
135
97
Pasadena, TX
My suggestion is to call roadside assistance again, report that your vehicle is disabled, and it towed to the service center. Then they have to deal with you. At least you can get some Uber credits out of it.

My first 12v lasted only 3 months. The second died after 2.5 years. on the second time my vehicle sat at the service center for 10 days because they were again out of batteries. After a few days of Uber credits, I was able to get a loaner for the remainder of the time.

Jumping the 12v battery isn't very hard, FYI. There are YouTube videos on how to do it.
 

puregreddy

Member
May 2, 2017
32
22
Orange County
That's good advice - the previous post above this one.

I called roadside when my battery died. They did their "jump start" so I was able to drive to the service center. They may not have batteries in stock but you may get other options like Uber credits or even the elusive loaner car.

Worth a shot.
 

BrianKH

Member
Sep 26, 2017
48
62
Fort Lauderdale
I just called Roadside Service again. The woman I spoke with was very pleasant and tried to be helpful. She placed me on hold while she called the Dania Beach facility. The woman then came back to me and said she was getting the Manager of the Dania Beach facility on the phone for me and to just stay on the phone. A few seconds later she must have transferred me to Dania Beach as the phone began to ring. I did not get a live person but instead was greeted by a recorded message asking me to leave a message for the service department. This coming Sunday will be three weeks and I still have not spoken a single word with anyone from Tesla's service department. I am beyond pissed!
 

TBone2112

Member
Oct 28, 2020
28
27
Nevada
Let us know if this is covered under warranty. I hope so. We have 2+ years and 42,000 miles on our MX and so far no 12V problems. I see the AGM replacement batteries are $200-260, so would probably change it myself if I had a problem and couldn't wait. Musk admits there is something wrong with the 12V batteries especially in the MS and MX and says there is supposed to be a software update coming to help. Do you keep the X plugged in? I just found out the 12V isn't charged if the X is left sitting and not plugged in, which I was doing all of the time.
Mine was just replaced on my 16 MX with 56K miles no charge. i just drove it the 80 miles to the SC and walked in and talked to them and they replaced it on the spot.
 
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BrianKH

Member
Sep 26, 2017
48
62
Fort Lauderdale
I called Roadside Service again this afternoon. Once again, I had a great experience with Roadside Service. I stayed on hold for quite some time only to have the Roadside Service representative come back to me and tell me she could not get anyone to answer at the Dania Beach facility (same old story). I was told a Roadside Service supervisor would be giving me a call. Sure enough, about an hour later, I received a call from the supervisor. After listening to my tale of woe, the supervisor offered to send a flatbed to my house to take the care to the service center - suggesting that getting the Model X to the service center was probably my best bet to expedite the service. As we talked through the process, the supervisor said it may be quicker and better if we drove the car directly to the service center.

Thus, my wife immediately drove the vehicle to the Dania Beach facility. The technician told my wife they have had instances where it has taken them two months to obtain and replace Model X 12v batteries. They did provide a decent amount in the way of a Uber voucher but with Covid-19 who really wants to rely on getting into a car with a stranger that has transported an unknown number of people before you. Sunday will be three weeks since the monitor gave notice the 12v battery needed replacement. Who knows how long we will be without the vehicle.
 
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BrianKH

Member
Sep 26, 2017
48
62
Fort Lauderdale
To close the loop on this thread, we received our Model X back on Wednesday, November 25 (the day before Thanksgiving). The 12v battery was replaced and we were not charged for the service. The only explanation we were given as to why the battery probably went bad - "we see that happen when the vehicle is driven a lot of miles"). After 14 months of taking delivery, our 2019 Model X has less than 4500 miles on it!

After this experience, my advice would be to anyone that is having a 12v battery issue - get the vehicle to the service center. I find it to be more than pure coincidence that we received a 12v battery replacement within three business days of taking it to the service center when we had waited nearly three weeks for Tesla Mobile Service to come up with a battery for us. I am guessing it the Uber credits they gave us (which was a substantial amount) provided the service center the needed motivation to get the Model X back on the road (those Uber credits terminated automatically within three days of us taking the vehicle back). Thanks to all who provided help with this issue. Much appreciated.
 

VikH

Supporting Member
Nov 23, 2015
988
790
Midwest, USA
After this experience, my advice would be to anyone that is having a 12v battery issue - get the vehicle to the service center.

This is the key. Most Service Centers have limited physical space to store cars. If you leave the car there (and especially if you have a loaner), they have more motivation to get your car fixed. Sad that it has to be done this way.
 

outie

Active Member
May 22, 2016
2,732
2,341
SoCal
Sorry to hear your bad experience with a dead battery.

My 2018 Model X 12V battery died few months ago in my garage without any advance notice. I requested roadside assistance through the app and was immediately contacted by roadside through text message. I asked if they could just jump start it but they said they could but I would be charged for the next roadside if they don’t tow the car to the service center. Anyways it was a Sunday afternoon and they sent out a flatbed and the owner/manager of the towing company came with his own vehicle first to prepare and train the flatbed guy on how to jump start the Model X/put in tow mode and to get my car out of the garage and to the flatbed. I was very impressed with the whole process.

I was then contacted by the service center (I don’t remember it was the same Sunday afternoon or the next morning) and they got the car battery replaced and I was able to pick it up. No charge at all. Granted I think the battery died a bit sooner than I expected. Might have to do with my 24/7 Blackvue camera so I’ve since unplugged it and just use the built in TeslaCam instead.
 

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