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My Model 3 Experience - Pre-Owned to Car Fire

I want to start of this thread by saying that I loved my Model 3 and i do expect to stay with Tesla in the long run.

Some of you may have heard what happend to my car and for those of you who have not, here is a quick recap:


I'm writing this for full transparency because when my car burnt down I was completely lost about what to do. I purchaed my Model 3 SR+
through Tesla's preowned inventory around October 2019. It was an early 2019 model (I'm missing the boombox option) with roughly 380 miles
and free unlimited data and I was pretty damn happy it was mine. I've been a fan of Teslas since the 2013 Model S and I saved up money through
two deployments to pay off my Model 3. I initially received a preapproval for a car loan through Navy Federal but I ended up taking that to Tesla's
finance department where they were able to match the loan and it was routed through Wells Fargo. The entire process took from downpaymet to finance
to delivery took about two weeks. I work out of Los Angeles but live in San Diego and my vehicle was availble for pickup through the Tesla Center (or whatever it is)
in Carlsbad. My time with the Model 3 was great and the only issues i ran into were constantly deflating tires, two straight up flat tires on the highway and some charging issues
when using a Super charger after using a 110v. When i purchased the vehicle I decided to insure it with Tesla's insurance, which at the time was as easy as opening the app and
deciding the level of coverage.

-- But before I forget, I do want to point out that if you live in the LA area and are using Autopilot, theres a spot on the 5 freeway in Burbank by the Supercharger(I dont recall where exactly) but WITHOUT FAIL, the Autopilot will think it's on a street instead of the freeway and the Model 3 will drastically lower its speed and that *sugar* is terrifying --

Anyway, I havent had any major issues and life has been great. Fast forward to May 14th when my car burned down. The morning of, I had gone to starbucks and i had driven the Model 3 for roughly 15-25mins MAX. This was around 10am. Around 5pm, I receieved a notification through the Tesla App that my car's alarm was going off and when I went outside I could see smoke coming out of the windows(I much later joked to my girlfriend that the car was trying to save itself RIP). I opened the rear passenger door and saw flames coming from the floor/rear seat behind the driver's side under my newborn's (relatively new, about 5 months) car seat holder thing. That entire section was on fire. We were visiting my girlfriends family in California City and we had planned on staying the weekend so we had a bunch of baby stuff, a stroller, and she had graduated the day prior from USC so she had all of her graduation stuff in there as well inside those giant blue Ikea bags. I say this because as far as electrical/tech stuff goes, I had a Surface laptop, an Ipad, a first gen surface duo, a gillete electrical razor all in the backseat inside one of those insignia laptop bags and this hadnt caught fire yet. In the trunk I had a gamecube and an Xbox One in my trunk because my garage was/is disgusting and i threw those in there to get them inside the house (RIP Viewtiful Joe). But none of this stuff had been on fire when I opened the car door. My dumbass probably couldve grabbed that bag/whatever was in the trunk but I heard some electrical pops(?) and noped my way inside. We called the fire department buy by the time they showed up, the fire has engulfed the interior and I ended up losing a big part of my life. I'm glad no one was in the car but typing this sucks. I was on paternal leave and I had my EDD checks/wallet in the car because for whatever reason I didnt use mobile deposit so I was also kinda broke. I didnt know what to do and I'm still just like "damn, that actually happened." I go to school at UCSD and i took an incomplete for my winter(?) quarter because my baby kept getting sick and now all my work I had done for my research papers had blown up, literally. Im writing this because wtf do i tell my teachers? My car ate my homework? Lol. The fire captain came up to me and asked for my statement and said hed investigate and get back to me with a report of the findings. There was one cop that stopped by, mostly to take pictures.

Anyway, I called Tesla Roadside because Tesla Insurance is closed on weekends. You have the option to open a claim through the tesla app but i wanted to speak to someone...anyone really. So i called and the person that answered asked me what happened. I told her my car caught on fire and that it wasnt becausee of a collision, it just randomly caught on fire. She said she would have someone come over and pickup the Tesla to take to the service center in Bakersfield. Cool.

When the tow truck driver showed up a couple hours later he was like "I don't exactly know what to do with this. They hadnt mentioned your car burnt down completely and I cant just drive down the highway with everything flying out. Also, the service center is closed so do they want me to park it out front?" He spoke to roadside and we agreed to leave it til Monday where they would send someone new to come pick it up. Right at 8am that monday morning, I called Tesla Insurance, literally as soon as they opened and was somehow already on hold. I continued to be on hold for half an hour and a new lady picked up. She assigned a new claim number to my car and assigned herself as my adjustor. She set up a rental through Enterprise and then I never heard from her again. A few days later I get a call from a guy working with Tesla Insurance saying that my claim had been reassigned to him and he somewhat aggresively interviewed/questioned me as to what happend. Again, i went some time without hearing from this guy so I called him every other day. On May 25th he finally got back to me and sent me a Report of Stolen Vehicle for me to fill out which was just asking for a repeat of everything he had previsouly asked + general car info like balance remaining, insurer, etc. I filled it out and sent it back within the hour and I didnt hear back until May 31st. The adjustor called me and stated that his manager would be taking over and they would work on the details of the settlment for the total loss once they recieved a copy of the fire captains report. Which brings us to now, where im waiting for a copy of the report to send over.

I'd like to know what happened to the car and I thought it'd be a little easier going through a Model 3 investigation since im also insured through Tesla but so far it has been a lot of waiting. I was told none of my belongings were covered by my policy and to take it up through my homeowners insurance. Something doesnt quit sound right about that but it what it is right now. I'm exploring my options as far as legal assistance but if anyone has any questions id be happy to answer. I tried looking for information from people that were in a similar position through google/reddit/here but there wasnt too much so ill try to keep this updated as I go along.
 

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