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New Model 3 - but much poorer battery life than expected - how can I change this?

ohmman

Plaid-ish Moderator
Feb 13, 2014
10,030
18,157
North Bay, CA
Moderator note: @VanillaAir_UK has given some good advice above. Just because a new member has posted a problem that might seem implausible does not immediately mean they have an illegitimate complaint. Please keep TMC a helpful community and do not be dismissive of new members. Odd issues do occasionally occur with Teslas and all other vehicles and products.

Members who are truly fabricating issues become evident pretty rapidly, and members don't need to be the first out of the gate to call them on it.
 

KenC

Active Member
Sep 4, 2018
3,552
3,216
Maine
I have had my vehicle for a day and a half and drove 105km return. My battery life said 320km when I left but I made it home at 26km remaining or 6 percent. I had the AC on fairly briefly and my phone was charging. Is there a way I can analyze where the battery drain is happening? Thanks!
So, basically, we need more details in order to offer any help. Like driving conditions and car settings, etc. The more info, the better.
 
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SMAlset

Well-Known Member
Mar 4, 2017
9,061
9,784
SF Bay Area
320km (198miles). So I'm guessing this is likely a SR model. I didn't see anything wrong with the way in which the question about analyzing battery usage was posed. Something as new owners we all have questions about since range anxiety is probably pretty typical until you better understand the car.

Without more info from OP I'd venture to guess as others have that speed played a bigger part in the answer. Tesla use to have on it's website an interactive battery range/speed/AC display that let you adjust factors to get a feel for how speed and AC could affect your battery range. I don't know why they took it down, I thought it was a good visual explanation for people new to EVs.

Also since this was over a day and a half, the car would have been parked and we don't know about any of the settings during that time. Hope OP will come back and give us more info.
 
Last edited:

jebinc

M3 LR AWD w/FSD and white premium interior
Jun 19, 2019
3,412
1,687
Seattle area
320km (198miles). So I'm guessing this is likely a SR model. I didn't see anything wrong with the way in which the question about analyzing battery usage was posed. Something as new owners we all have questions about since range anxiety is probably pretty typical until you better understand the car.

Agreed. The question from a new owner is fine a posed - definitely. What seems a bit odd (think about how you would feel/react as a new owner if this happened to you), is the "post and disappear" aspect. If I had this issue, I would hang around a bit, or at least check in periodically to see if anyone posted any suggestions, as I would want my anxiety resolved ASAP (by getting helpful information from other TMC members). Many TMC members asked for more information so they could help, and nothing from the OP since the first post, yesterday. This seems odd, given the potential severity of the OPs concern. I suppose time will tell.
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Nov 28, 2018
8,824
9,775
Riverside Co. CA
Agreed. The question from a new owner is fine a posed - definitely. What seems a bit odd (think about how you would feel/react as a new owner if this happened to you), is the "post and disappear" aspect. If I had this issue, I would hang around a bit, or at least check in periodically to see if anyone posted any suggestions, as I would want my anxiety resolved ASAP (by getting helpful information from other TMC members). Many TMC members asked for more information so they could help, and nothing from the OP since the first post, yesterday. This seems odd, given the potential severity of the OPs concern. I suppose time will tell.

Thats true, but its also true that its possible to get intimidated when someone asks a question and they get "called out for being a troll" or something before even 24 hours have passed.

The biggest issue is, I agree with @mswlogo in that we really (really) need a "read this first" type wiki that talks about:

1. Why do I not get my stated range?
2. What is the best way to charge?
3. I am going on a trip, do I need to plug in?
4. I dont know how to (use sentry mode, use dash cam, understand the energy graph,) where can I find more info on that?
5. My car is using XX miles a day of range! What can I check to see whats going on?

Some form of these questions are asked every couple of days here, and well meaning people try to answer them. Some things, like "do I need to plug in every day" or "whats the3 best way to charge" generate pages of posts almost every time they are posted... and thats every couple of days or so. If there already is a wiki on this stuff, then I apologize.. but it would help to have it if there isnt.
 

bwilson4web

hit the spot
Apr 19, 2019
346
204
Huntsville, AL
Hi,

Welcome to the world of Electric Vehicles (EV) but we kinda need to define some terms:
  • ". . . poorer battery life . . ." - this is typically measured over a long time frame, years, as a loss of battery capacity. You are new to the EV world so let's hold off on claiming battery life for a couple of years.
  • battery capacity - combined with vehicle efficiency, this is what determines the range, the km you get.
Let me suggest contact some local EV owners and meet with them for beverages and a snack. Chat with them and they will be quite happy to share technical details about how EVs work. If not, come to Huntsville AL and I would love to share.

Bob Wilson
 
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lbowroom

3/11 Pld/Blk/Blk/Crbn update 6/2 Blk/Crm/Crbn June
Sep 12, 2018
667
924
Orange County
Just skimming, but has anyone asked about elevation change? Perhaps she lives atop the alps and will get double the estimated range traveling downhill
 
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bwilson4web

hit the spot
Apr 19, 2019
346
204
Huntsville, AL
Just skimming, but has anyone asked about elevation change? Perhaps she lives atop the alps and will get double the estimated range traveling downhill
Better still, we need a GPS log that gives us the exact route including altitude, speed, and stops on the route. For example my recent benchmark between the Athen and Nashville SuperChargers.

I've attached a ZIP file with the Google Earth compatible, *.kmz file. We can unzip it and load the file into Google Earth for a fact-based, analysis.

Bob Wilson
 

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rainforest

Active Member
Aug 21, 2016
1,079
391
Canada
You can’t shut it off. And setting Regen low has less impact than most people think. In fact on straight highway, driving with Regen on low can improve efficiency, depending on driving habits. Try it sometime. Yes, you will use more brakes (in some situations) and it will feel different, but that doesn’t mean it’s less efficient.

Bottom line, OP judging the cars efficiency after 1.5 days of ownership is a little ridiculous. No idea what they included in their energy use and they know to little to even explain what resources they used.

Probably need a forum rule to not start yet another “poor efficiency” thread without driving for a least a couple weeks and reading a FAQ that the forum doesn’t have.

Because the site has limits on editing posts nothing like a FAQ on any topic can be developed. It’s just this constant repeat of the same stuff over and over.

FAQ’s probably should exist on tires, finish protection, efficiency and charging (e.g. a community Wiki). The info is all here but it’s spread to thin all over for anyone to retrieve it so new threads on the same topics happen over and over.

I find the efficiency of the 3 excellent compared to my X. X is way less efficient, and even has much more phantom drain and more usage when starting up.
 

jerry33

(S85-3/2/13 traded in) X LR: F2611##-3/27/20
Mar 8, 2012
19,718
22,731
Texas
I have had my vehicle for a day and a half and drove 105km return. My battery life said 320km when I left but I made it home at 26km remaining or 6 percent. I had the AC on fairly briefly and my phone was charging. Is there a way I can analyze where the battery drain is happening? Thanks!
The phone charging effect is going to be close to zero. A/C doesn't use that much unless you have it set really low (17C or some similar number). The 320 km is based on EPA numbers (or Canadian equivalent). The thing about these is that they are a standard test which allows comparison between cars. People, regardless of car, get some percentage of those numbers--it's usually less that 100%, although a few get more than 100%.

The items that hurt range the most are wind, rain, and speed. Speeding up hills is the worst kind of speed for efficiency. Heat in winter is also draining. Driving at highway speeds with the windows open is going to be worse than running the A/C. None of these are different in a gas car with the exception of winter heat because the gas car throws away about 80% of the energy in the fuel has heat so heating the cabin has little effect. The denser air in winter affects all cars, the fluids being cold (and thicker) also affects them but cold fluids affect gas cars more than electric cars because there are a lot more fluids, so the heater isn't the only factor.

The most accurate way to see how you are doing is to use the Nav system and look at the percentages (If your car has the trip graph this is pretty easy, however, I've heard that M3 doesn't have the trip graph yet). The trip graph is different than the energy graph because the Nav system calculates based on speed limits and hills (but not weather or traffic). The energy graph is based on past performance and is not a reliable measure for future performance. Though it will tell you how much you have been under or over the EPA number.

Unfortunately, there are not enough details about your trip to say more than generalities.
 
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Davidss2

Member
Jun 7, 2019
86
166
Texas
So I am also someone who doesn't get anywhere near the stated range. I think a lot of newer Tesla owners are going to have similar complaints as time goes on and more people buy Teslas who are not doing it out of any desire to be environmentally friendly.

In my case I drive fast, and floor the car a lot. In a gas car I typically get a maybe 10-20% less than the stated MPG and range. But in my model 3 I am getting massively worse than that probably 30-40% less than the stated range.

My personal opinion is that to achieve the stated range in a Tesla you need to hypermile where as in a gas car you can drive it pretty normally and achieve the EPA rating.
 

Rockster

Active Member
Oct 22, 2013
3,010
4,614
McKinney, TX
Moderator note: @VanillaAir_UK has given some good advice above. Just because a new member has posted a problem that might seem implausible does not immediately mean they have an illegitimate complaint. Please keep TMC a helpful community and do not be dismissive of new members. Odd issues do occasionally occur with Teslas and all other vehicles and products.

Members who are truly fabricating issues become evident pretty rapidly, and members don't need to be the first out of the gate to call them on it.


Fair enough. But I do find it odd that someone posting for help then ignores the very thread he initiated. When I post asking for help I watch the thread like a hawk and try to answer any follow-up questions from those offering insights.
 

KenC

Active Member
Sep 4, 2018
3,552
3,216
Maine
So I am also someone who doesn't get anywhere near the stated range. I think a lot of newer Tesla owners are going to have similar complaints as time goes on and more people buy Teslas who are not doing it out of any desire to be environmentally friendly.

In my case I drive fast, and floor the car a lot. In a gas car I typically get a maybe 10-20% less than the stated MPG and range. But in my model 3 I am getting massively worse than that probably 30-40% less than the stated range.

My personal opinion is that to achieve the stated range in a Tesla you need to hypermile where as in a gas car you can drive it pretty normally and achieve the EPA rating.
Good point, one should have a baseline for comparison. I get about 20% better than EPA in my BMW 330xi, and I get 113% efficiency relative to other Model 3 owners according to the Stats app.
 

Davidss2

Member
Jun 7, 2019
86
166
Texas
Good point, one should have a baseline for comparison. I get about 20% better than EPA in my BMW 330xi, and I get 113% efficiency relative to other Model 3 owners according to the Stats app.
Does the stats app take data from all tesla or just those who self report? If it's only those who self report then the average is even more skewed towards hypermiling. I would guess a lot of drivers on the other end of the bell curve like myself (I am averaging over 350wh/m) are way less likely to use the stats app.
 

dfwatt

Active Member
Sep 24, 2018
3,088
5,098
FL
I got mine for a week, quite shocked at the drain too. Especially the decrease for just having it parked in my garage. I think I lost 10-20KM a night. I think that has to do with sentry mode though.

As for your case, there is a chart that shows how much battery use (kW/h) in the most recent distance you drove.

Don't use Sentry mode unless you are prepared to pay for its vampire drain.
 

jebinc

M3 LR AWD w/FSD and white premium interior
Jun 19, 2019
3,412
1,687
Seattle area
I'm glad to see this thread continue, even though the OP never responded to members' request for more information.
 

dfwatt

Active Member
Sep 24, 2018
3,088
5,098
FL
So I am also someone who doesn't get anywhere near the stated range. I think a lot of newer Tesla owners are going to have similar complaints as time goes on and more people buy Teslas who are not doing it out of any desire to be environmentally friendly.

In my case I drive fast, and floor the car a lot. In a gas car I typically get a maybe 10-20% less than the stated MPG and range. But in my model 3 I am getting massively worse than that probably 30-40% less than the stated range.

My personal opinion is that to achieve the stated range in a Tesla you need to hypermile where as in a gas car you can drive it pretty normally and achieve the EPA rating.

You've obviously never driven a BMW M3 or a Mercedes AMG 6.3. It's very possible to get under 10 miles per gallon in those cars around town driving the way you drive. Waste and Inefficiencies involved in electric drivetrains at high 'throttle' openings are considerably less parasitic in terms of their impact on mileage and energy consumption compared to what goes on an internal combustion vehicle. It's orders of magnitude less efficient in an ICE vehicle to be accelerating at high rates keeping the transmission in a low gear add a large throttle opening. In an EV you are using more energy simply because you're creating more heat, but not five times as much energy as you would an internal combustion engine car
 
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