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No garage for my Tesla in Canadian Winter

Discussion in 'Tesla, Inc.' started by DP_57, Mar 2, 2017.

  1. DP_57

    DP_57 Member

    Nov 15, 2016
    St Louis, MO. USA / Magog, Québec. Canada
    hi All,

    What is the consensus on here about having a Tesla or any EV car in the cold winter similar to Canada and no garage to warm up the battery every night. Any negative to it other than the reduced regeneration of the energy and having a cold car in the morning?

  2. mrElbe

    mrElbe Active Member

    Aug 17, 2014
    Stouffville, ON Canada
    My car sits in the drive way all winter. Trick is to start charging at night so that it finishes just before you start out in the morning. Then turn on interior heat before you go. This way you have a warm battery and melted any ice or snow off the car.
    • Informative x 2
  3. Dax279

    Dax279 Member

    Oct 21, 2016
    Agree with the comment above. There are some threads on this and how to ensure the car is as ready as it can be for when you leave. I also know that someone from Alberta posted a video of his car being cold soaked in the morning.

    Just follow what was said above and search using cold weather and you should find a lot of useful tips.

    I would only add that you should make sure you have the car plugged into a 14-30 plug or better to ensure you are not only heating the battery and the car but also giving the battery a good charge.
  4. DP_57

    DP_57 Member

    Nov 15, 2016
    St Louis, MO. USA / Magog, Québec. Canada
    I just wonder if in the long run there is a possibility of battery damage or something liek that with cold cold winters like in canada... any thoughts?
  5. SmartElectric

    SmartElectric Active Member

    Jul 9, 2014
    One word: Norway

    Tesla sells thousands of cars there. Canada too.

    Our Tesla has 90000 km after 4 years. No battery issues. Almost no loss of range.
  6. AnxietyRanger

    AnxietyRanger Well-Known Member

    Aug 22, 2014
    I've lived three winters with the Model S P85 in an area with winter conditions and the only problems I report are external or usability "California car" niggles, some things are not so well thought out for winter. But the battery and the drivetrain are not a problem - I don't even charge every day and I park outside. Sometimes I remember to use the app for heating the car, other times not. It has worked as well or better as any gasoline car.

    Now, there are some smaller "California" issues of course that are a pain, but not any kind of showstoppers:

    - The door handles do often freeze to their extended position (no problems extending them though, that's explosive if need be) as water condenses and freezes on the cavities on top of them - a better design might help here. Sometimes I've used a hair blower to unfreeze them, other times I just leave them extended.

    - The folding mirrors freeze closed far more often than on any other car I've owned due to IMO a design flaw that leaves a part of the mirrors holder plane exposed on the outside when the mirror is folded, that's just inviting trouble.This means freezing and snow will create an actual barrier for the mirror unfolding. Germans also usually have plastic non-painted parts covering the folding surfaces that don't scratch so easily, you have to be careful with Tesla's mirrors. Only remedy I've found is turning folding off for the winter. I don't have to turn it off on any of my other cars.

    - The charge port at first was very hard to open during winter because it froze shut and you could not force its mechanism to unlock reliably while standing near to it (so that you can push its rear end to force it open while its locking magnet unlocks). This has been remedied a bit by a software update with the ability to unlock the magnet now from the car's key remote (the button on the charge cable is not as reliable at all). So I push the charge port door's end and unlock it simultaneously to open when frozen. Newer cars have upgraded auto-closing charge port doors, maybe they work better.

    - The frameless windows are a pain in the winter and more so than in Audi's I've had with similar windows. They just keep freezing into their upwards position more often, which means during winter some doors have to be closed from the outside carefully while pushing the window inwards a bit, so it fits under the aluminium trim. I've gotten used to opening and closing doors for my passengers.

    - The heating of the car is not really optimized for winter conditions. I have had trouble keeping the blowers / window heaters on when parked, they keep turning off, meaning I can not reliably leave them on while cleaning the car of snow. Normally with an ICE we are taught to the car on, turn all blowers/heaters to max, and then go outside to clean the snow. With Tesla, it just keeps shutting everything down when I leave the car, so the windows remain misty and foggy on the inside when I return. They are not controllable through the app either. Obviously something one does not think of in California.

    - No washers for headlights. Harder to keep them clean in poor weather. Actually a really rare omission in a car of this price in Europe. I guess this is more an American car thing perhaps than a California car thing.

    Upside is the remote heating/cooling in general, it is better than the average gasoline heater/ventilator, of course, thanks to the big battery. Getting the car inside toasty is easy. Too bad the extremeties of the car are still troublesome.

    Still, the biggest part, driving it, no problems. Battery does of course deplete a bit faster during winter conditions, but that's manageable.
    • Informative x 1
  7. Chrisizzle

    Chrisizzle Member

    Nov 25, 2014
    Toronto, Ontario, canada
    I live in Toronto and only have a single carport for a two car family. So, I'm always exposed to the elements and at best, I just don't have to scrape the ice off.

    To compound things, I do NOT have a charger at my house. In summer, I get by fine using chargers at work or the occasional super charge. In winter, I plug into the wall outlet over night just to prevent vampire drain.

    Otherwise, I'll just ditto what AnxietyRanger says above. Especially The note about disabling the retracting mirrors or they'll freeze closed.
    • Like x 1
  8. arnis

    arnis Member

    Apr 13, 2015
    Anything down to -15C is absolutely safe.
    Anything below -25C for a day and you better keep your car plugged in, otherwise it will lose charge slowly if battery cools down.
    Anything below -35C for a day and you must keep car plugged in 230V. Leaving car discharged and/or unplugged is a really bad idea.
    Anything below -40C... contact Tesla. Verify coolant freezing point. Preheat the vehicle before you touch the leather interior. Start thinking about keeping car inside:cool:
    • Like x 2
    • Disagree x 1
  9. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

    Aug 7, 2012
    Toronto, ON
    Good list, and here's one more item:

    The way the wipers park under the cowl makes it very difficult to clean the snow out of that area between the hood and the glass. You can put the wipers in "Service Mode" which will park them half way up the glass,but they still cannot be raised up perpendicular to the windshield to prevent the rubber from freezing to the glass.They can only be raised an inch or two and will spring back down to the glass when released.

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