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Moisture/condensation in headlights

That's a weird response from the SC, moisture inside the headlights is unacceptable and you should speak with them again, I'm yet to see a headlight on any car that's leaking water.

Few weeks ago when I noticed my rear lights with water inside, SC replaced them immediately with no questions asked, you should expect the same.
 
I had the same issue with the rear lights and the SC replaced the seals. However, it has not fixed the issue - it has improved it a lot, but I can see now and them some moisture (like a foggy layer) inside.

And now that you mention it, I've also seen it in the headlights, but so light that I wasn't worried.

Now you've just make me add this to the list of things to be looked at next time I take the car to a SC...
 

mknox

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2012
10,104
1,898
Toronto, ON
For the past two winters, when it gets really cold, both my headlights will fill about 50% full of fog/condensation. So far, it hasn't been in front of the projector lens. Here's a picture with it partially fogged over:

IMG_1588.JPG
 

AmpedRealtor

Well-Known Member
Jun 30, 2013
6,433
4,165
Phoenix, AZ
Any condensation in the headlight should be unacceptable because it reduces the light output and changes the beam focus. Those headlights need to be replaced, but fortunately it's a simple part swap. Tesla will change out the entire headlight assembly with a new one.

- - - Updated - - -

I had a recurring issue here in Arizona that required the creation of a new service bulletin. My particular issue was the service center's inability to properly resolve moisture and dust intrusion into my rear backup tail lights (the bright white ones). The appliqué was replaced four times, each time the problem shifts from one side to the other. This last time they engaged engineering who offered a different solution that resulted in a service bulletin. If you are unable to have your rear lights properly fixed, ask your SC to contact the Scottsdale SC for how they resolved my issue. Since the last fix I have not had any more issues. They either used a different seal or a different adhesive.
 
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mknox

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2012
10,104
1,898
Toronto, ON
Any condensation in the headlight should be unacceptable because it reduces the light output and changes the beam focus. Those headlights need to be replaced, but fortunately it's a simple part swap. Tesla will change out the entire headlight assembly with a new one.

In my case, it happens in both headlights but only when very, very cold. So far, it has not covered the portion of the lens that the beam shines through. No noticeable change in light output or pattern while driving either. I have not mentioned it to Service because it happens so infrequently.

I had a recurring issue here in Arizona that required the creation of a new service bulletin. My particular issue was the service center's inability to properly resolve moisture and dust intrusion into my rear backup tail lights (the bright white ones). The appliqué was replaced four times, each time the problem shifts from one side to the other. This last time they engaged engineering who offered a different solution that resulted in a service bulletin. If you are unable to have your rear lights properly fixed, ask your SC to contact the Scottsdale SC for how they resolved my issue. Since the last fix I have not had any more issues. They either used a different seal or a different adhesive.

The last time I was in for that, they mentioned that they had a revised procedure for the fix. I guess word has made it to Toronto!
 
That's a weird response from the SC, moisture inside the headlights is unacceptable and you should speak with them again, I'm yet to see a headlight on any car that's leaking water.

Few weeks ago when I noticed my rear lights with water inside, SC replaced them immediately with no questions asked, you should expect the same.

moisture is different from water. Sitting water shouldnt be happening; however a small amount of condensation due to temperature changes is normal - there is actually a rubber hose on the back of modern light housings because of this. It helps reduce/eliminate that phenomenon. The lighting heats and cools trapped air to a different temp than is outside of the lens (think of fogging a mirror).
 
I notice my left headlight fogs up a little bit when I wash the car. It clears up quickly. I told the service rep about it when I took my car in for its first service.

He said it was normal. Of course, I said, "OK, the right headlight doesn't fog up when I wash the car." :rolleyes:

It wasn't a big deal to me so I didn't press it.
 

scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,361
Canada
Headlights are vented to atmospheric... delta temperatures and difference of humidity levels (car wash)... expect fogging.

I've noticed it a bit in days following a car wash.

I think the projector beams give off enough heat that they clear the fog in that spot on the headlights first.

I've also noticed fogging of the reverse lights...

This all clears up in a couple days when humidity balances out again.
 
Upping this old thread in case anybody has new info. I woke up today, after a few days of rain, to a very fogged right headlight. Left one is just fine.

I had a minor fender bender this April that did not damage the light. My first thought today was that the seal is busted and the unit needs to be replaced. But from this thread it sounds like this might be within expected range? I did not see it happen after regular car washes.

Apologies for the upside down pic. For some reason it wants to show up like that when I upload it, no matter what the original pic looks like...
 

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Upping this old thread in case anybody has new info. I woke up today, after a few days of rain, to a very fogged right headlight. Left one is just fine.

I had a minor fender bender this April that did not damage the light. My first thought today was that the seal is busted and the unit needs to be replaced. But from this thread it sounds like this might be within expected range? I did not see it happen after regular car washes.

Apologies for the upside down pic. For some reason it wants to show up like that when I upload it, no matter what the original pic looks like...

Condensation accumulated in my 2013 non tech package passenger headlight this year. Inspection of my old headlights showed that the seals had been compromised. Ordered replacements on Ebay. Saved a bundle vs. going through Tesla.
 

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Condensation accumulated in my 2013 non tech package passenger headlight this year. Inspection of my old headlights showed that the seals had been compromised. Ordered replacements on Ebay. Saved a bundle vs. going through Tesla.

Thanks! I am probably in the same situation. Very helpful. Did you replace yourself or did you get help from a body shop? I did some digging and saw that replacing the headlight requires removing the bumper, which gives me some pause.
 
Thanks! I am probably in the same situation. Very helpful. Did you replace yourself or did you get help from a body shop? I did some digging and saw that replacing the headlight requires removing the bumper, which gives me some pause.

A custom car upgrade shop or body shop can take care of it. Replacing the headlight requires taking the bumper off so I left it to the professionals.
 
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Likely they mean just getting a used unit from Ebay, not a particular replacement part.

Update on my end. I checked with the service center and yes, the estimate was $1.5K. Fun fact, water intrusion is not covered by the CPO or extended warranty. Sounds rather unfair to me but, since I there is a chance that this might be user damage, I did not want to escalate.
 
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