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New 2024 Model 3 (Highland) - Trunk Lid Water Intrusion / Condensation on Tail Light

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Hi everyone!

Wanted to bring this up within the forums and log it here for any potential future issues with anyone else receiving the new Highland 2024 Model 3 (or later).

Quick High Level Introduction: We recently just sold our 2019 Model 3 and received our new 2024 (Highland) Model 3 last Monday (03/25/2024).

Current Configuration: Long Range 2024 (Highland) Model 3 with the exact config visually below. Received March 25th, 2024, Manufactured in March 2024 in the Fremont factory in California. Was able to transfer the Full-Self Driving feature from our old 2019 Standard Range Plus Model 3, but with it being HW4, we won't be able to use the feature for a bit.
1711944102463.png


Identified Environmental Cause: The car has been driving well with no immediate issue up until it started to rain in Southern California this Friday (03/29/2024).

1st issue: On Easter Sunday (03/31/2024), I noticed the left (Driver Side) tail light has condensation with some standing water (you can see it on the bottom left corner of the tail light):
1711942182009.png


Thankful Tesla ordered the part, but won't be available until roughly April 18th (this should be covered under warranty).

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

2nd issue: This one is a bit more serious. Unfortunately I reacted a bit too quickly so I didn't take many pictures of the issue showing the water inside the trunk. What I found was water intrusion into the trunk.
1. When i opened the trunk after it rained, i heard water sloshing around inside of the trunk lid. When the trunk lid fully opened, the water came out of the drain at the tip of the trunk on the passenger side (similar to other videos shown on this forum)​
1711945385703.png

2. To be quick, on the right side of the trunk, there was noticeable water intrusion from the trunk lid (was water logged in a roughly 2inch x 2inch area on the carpet). Circled in red below to show where I noticed the water intrusion:​
1711943692832.png
NOTE: The rain water did run down into the tub of the trunk, so I had to remove the tub to dry it out. There was also a small puddle of water onto of the metal structure under the tub.​
3. After I did this, I did take off a portion of the trunk lid's inside cover on the right side (passenger side), and noticed on the corner of the inside of the trunk lid that there was a decent amount of water sitting around the panel clip along with droplets of water scattered around the area. I dried this area.​
1711945005005.png
NOTE: Above figure shows where I unclipped the cover to get a look inside of the trunk lid, which where I saw water inside. There were also some water droplets scattered throughout the inner structure of the trunk lid as well.​
4. I also checked the Trunk wiring harness along with looking under the carpet to the right of the tub and did not notice any water build, nor water droplets, so it does seem like the water did not travel down the wiring harness when opening the trunk.​
1711943920494.png
5. As a final experiment, I closed the trunk, and poured some water around the newly designed tail lights.​
1711944751919.png

6. I opened the trunk back up and there was new water sitting on the inside of the trunk lid's cover (same area as I saw before I dried it). Also looked in the inside structure of the trunk lid and did notice some new and pretty large water droplets from the area where the new tail light is. I did my best, but got a not great picture of the area I believe is the problem which is showing inside of the trunk lid's structure:​
1711945825449.png
NOTE: Figure above, Red arrow shows a smaller water droplet, and the yellow circle indicates the panels where there should be sealant (there was sealant below the yellow circled area, and stopped in the visible area shown above). This is where I saw the large droplet of water as well.​

Potential Conclusion: So I deduce that the new tail light area has some small hole through the panel seal that is allowing the water to go into the trunk lid, and eventually inside the trunk.
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With this, I am waiting for Tesla to respond, assuming they will verify the issue and hopefully seal up this area so there's no more water intrusion once this gets into the service center. Thankfully I caught this issue right away so it didn't allow for the water to build up and cause permanent damage to the inside of the trunk and potential electrical issues.

As my 2-cents on this situation: It makes sense for this issue to occur as this version has only been out for half a year around the world (much shorter for the Fremont Factory) and the tail lights are a new mfg process introduced at Tesla's Fremont Factory, which unfortunately will lead to these issues more frequently until it's more mature of a process (coming from a Manufacturing engineer myself). The rest of the car is very well built, drives incredible smooth on the road (love the new suspension and quiet cabin). I love this new model so I will make this work out!
 

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Hello!

I just dropped off the car today at the Tesla Service Center in Upland, California. The current date for repair completion is on Tuesday next week (04/23/2024). Some info is that they have to bring it to a nearby Tesla approved body shop to fix the structural leak behind the rear-right tail light, which I'm hoping they will fix the issue (I did give them the same info, although truncated, as I did in this forum post to help with diagnosis of the leak location). I'll give another update once I get the car back next week!

Also, I was able to get a loaner Model 3. It's a late 2019 Long Range Model 3 with FSD and the unlocked performance boost (4.2 to 3.7 seconds). It's pretty dang fast! Although, I immediately notice the reduction in the quality of the ride and noise level in the car when compared to the Highland model (It really shows the improved luxury feel of the car when comparing the legacy model to the updated car). It also has a lot of creaking in the cabin, haha. Even though the performance is a bit better in this loaner, it just doesn't compare to the updated Model 3 in my honest opinion.

I also just came from having an early 2019 Model 3 Standard Range Plus with FSD (we ordered the new Highland version during the time we were able to transfer the FSD to the new car for free).

Thanks!
 
dude..I feel you on that. I went from the 2018 early vin to the 2024 and the quality is a huge huge step up. My new car was recently in the shop for a week as well (needed a new hood because it was warped) and they gave me a 2020 long range with all the software fixin's too. I can tell between all these years that there's a continual improvement of the interior (from 2018 to 2020 to 2024).

I'm happy with all of it, and I hope you get your car back soon enough (I appreciate the loaners for mini roadtrips over the weekend, ahem, free charging haha). My car is in another shop right now for PPF work, but I'll have to see if I have any water issues once I get it back.

Thanks for the update!
 
Got our car back a week ago, and they fixed the leaky trunk with clear silicone resin/adhesive (as well as replaced the rear tail light). No more water logged tail light. I'll be checking it to make sure it truly is leak proof now. Probably going to be a bit paranoid now with it to be honest when it rains. Thankfully it doesn't rain that much now in Southern California, lol.

Also, I had to clean the car up a bit after the appointment. They doused the car with hard water a few times to check for leaks after they applied the silicone, and let the water bake in the sun causing hard water spots all over the car. This was after Tesla had the mass layoffs, so they were short-handed quite a bit, so it looks like they rushed this job to get it back to us.

To fix the hard water spots, I had to do some compound, polish and wax on the car to get it off (although I just needed the compound step for the hood, the rest just needed polishing). Also had some Water Spot remover for the windows. Was a pain, but it did allow myself to work on the car and wax it to further protect it from weathering.

Finished car look (also upgraded the hub caps to the model Y Performance look-alike, and supposedly slightly better aero improvement over the OEM hub caps (also look a lot better). Added mud flaps to the front and rear tires, and tinted the windows. Also ordered a new license plate to take advantage of the Black/Yellow look to fit the darkened car look (which looks awesome now).

Been loving the car!

1714709744944.png
 
Hi everyone!

Wanted to bring this up within the forums and log it here for any potential future issues with anyone else receiving the new Highland 2024 Model 3 (or later).

Quick High Level Introduction: We recently just sold our 2019 Model 3 and received our new 2024 (Highland) Model 3 last Monday (03/25/2024).

Current Configuration: Long Range 2024 (Highland) Model 3 with the exact config visually below. Received March 25th, 2024, Manufactured in March 2024 in the Fremont factory in California. Was able to transfer the Full-Self Driving feature from our old 2019 Standard Range Plus Model 3, but with it being HW4, we won't be able to use the feature for a bit.
View attachment 1034142

Identified Environmental Cause: The car has been driving well with no immediate issue up until it started to rain in Southern California this Friday (03/29/2024).

1st issue: On Easter Sunday (03/31/2024), I noticed the left (Driver Side) tail light has condensation with some standing water (you can see it on the bottom left corner of the tail light):
View attachment 1034125

Thankful Tesla ordered the part, but won't be available until roughly April 18th (this should be covered under warranty).

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

2nd issue: This one is a bit more serious. Unfortunately I reacted a bit too quickly so I didn't take many pictures of the issue showing the water inside the trunk. What I found was water intrusion into the trunk.
1. When i opened the trunk after it rained, i heard water sloshing around inside of the trunk lid. When the trunk lid fully opened, the water came out of the drain at the tip of the trunk on the passenger side (similar to other videos shown on this forum)​

2. To be quick, on the right side of the trunk, there was noticeable water intrusion from the trunk lid (was water logged in a roughly 2inch x 2inch area on the carpet). Circled in red below to show where I noticed the water intrusion:​
NOTE: The rain water did run down into the tub of the trunk, so I had to remove the tub to dry it out. There was also a small puddle of water onto of the metal structure under the tub.​
3. After I did this, I did take off a portion of the trunk lid's inside cover on the right side (passenger side), and noticed on the corner of the inside of the trunk lid that there was a decent amount of water sitting around the panel clip along with droplets of water scattered around the area. I dried this area.​
NOTE: Above figure shows where I unclipped the cover to get a look inside of the trunk lid, which where I saw water inside. There were also some water droplets scattered throughout the inner structure of the trunk lid as well.​
4. I also checked the Trunk wiring harness along with looking under the carpet to the right of the tub and did not notice any water build, nor water droplets, so it does seem like the water did not travel down the wiring harness when opening the trunk.​
5. As a final experiment, I closed the trunk, and poured some water around the newly designed tail lights.​

6. I opened the trunk back up and there was new water sitting on the inside of the trunk lid's cover (same area as I saw before I dried it). Also looked in the inside structure of the trunk lid and did notice some new and pretty large water droplets from the area where the new tail light is. I did my best, but got a not great picture of the area I believe is the problem which is showing inside of the trunk lid's structure:​
NOTE: Figure above, Red arrow shows a smaller water droplet, and the yellow circle indicates the panels where there should be sealant (there was sealant below the yellow circled area, and stopped in the visible area shown above). This is where I saw the large droplet of water as well.​

Potential Conclusion: So I deduce that the new tail light area has some small hole through the panel seal that is allowing the water to go into the trunk lid, and eventually inside the trunk.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

With this, I am waiting for Tesla to respond, assuming they will verify the issue and hopefully seal up this area so there's no more water intrusion once this gets into the service center. Thankfully I caught this issue right away so it didn't allow for the water to build up and cause permanent damage to the inside of the trunk and potential electrical issues.

As my 2-cents on this situation: It makes sense for this issue to occur as this version has only been out for half a year around the world (much shorter for the Fremont Factory) and the tail lights are a new mfg process introduced at Tesla's Fremont Factory, which unfortunately will lead to these issues more frequently until it's more mature of a process (coming from a Manufacturing engineer myself). The rest of the car is very well built, drives incredible smooth on the road (love the new suspension and quiet cabin). I love this new model so I will make this work out!
Welcome to the recurring nightmare. I have similar water sloshing inside trunk lid issue on my M3 2023. Service Center visit #6 coming in 2 weeks. Previous visits were for other issues......some were Factory defects and some were caused by the idiot techs whom fixed one thing and broke something else. Averaging 1 SC visit per month, since taking delivery mid December 23
 
Welcome to the recurring nightmare. I have similar water sloshing inside trunk lid issue on my M3 2023. Service Center visit #6 coming in 2 weeks. Previous visits were for other issues......some were Factory defects and some were caused by the idiot techs whom fixed one thing and broke something else. Averaging 1 SC visit per month, since taking delivery mid December 23
Yeah, I heard about this issue with Tesla, especially from the Fremont Factory. I haven't heard these issues with the European or China built Model 3's, but I may not be looking at the correct place. So far the major leak is fixed in the trunk, but keeping an eye on the rear tail light. There's still some condensation building up in it. I may just do a self fix on it if it reoccurs to dry and reseal the tail light instead of it being destined for the e-waste (this new tail light seems to condensate at a completely different location than the last one), but I'll let Tesla handle it until the warranty is up.

Thanks!