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Official: Model S Service Plans

JPP

Active Member
Feb 4, 2013
3,056
1,284
SF Bay Area, CA
I also purchased the 4 year ESA and need to decide if I want to replace my MCU1 under warranty for $200 or upgrade to MCU2 for $2,500.

There is some discussion on TMC that the MCU2 upgrade cost under warranty may be reduced to $1,750.

If MCU1 fails under warranty, can MCU2 be negotiated cheaper?

Data point--I have a service request since 6/29 for an MCU1 replacement (REMAN part). Part has been back ordered and I am hoping that it will come in to my Dublin CA Service Center (just up the road fro Fremont) by Mon. 8/11 (the now re-re-scheduled service appointment). So be prepared for a major wait for the MCU1 replacement.
 

David29

Supporting Member
Aug 1, 2015
2,173
1,789
DEDHAM, MA
Data point--I have a service request since 6/29 for an MCU1 replacement (REMAN part). Part has been back ordered and I am hoping that it will come in to my Dublin CA Service Center (just up the road fro Fremont) by Mon. 8/11 (the now re-re-scheduled service appointment). So be prepared for a major wait for the MCU1 replacement.

Experience on this point seems to vary widely. When I brought in my car, the MCU replacement part ordered for me about 2 weeks ahead had not yet come in, so I expected them to do the brake work I needed and then return the car and tell me to come back another day for the MCU (if they could get it started), OR have me leave it and wait. Turned out that either the part arrived that day, or they found one they could use in stock, and the car was done with both repairs in less than 24 hours. I really lucked out, and I realize I was fortunate compared to what seems like many others who have waited a longer time....
 

FlatSix911

Porsche 918 Hybrid
Jun 15, 2015
6,504
5,915
Silicon Valley
Data point--I have a service request since 6/29 for an MCU1 replacement (REMAN part). Part has been back ordered and I am hoping that it will come in to my Dublin CA Service Center (just up the road fro Fremont) by Mon. 8/11 (the now re-re-scheduled service appointment). So be prepared for a major wait for the MCU1 replacement.

Thanks for sharing your timeline on the MCU replacement.

I have been on the back-order list for MCU2 for two weeks with my local service center. Time will tell.
 

JPP

Active Member
Feb 4, 2013
3,056
1,284
SF Bay Area, CA
Thanks for sharing your timeline on the MCU replacement.

I have been on the back-order list for MCU2 for two weeks with my local service center. Time will tell.

You are waiting for a current production MCU2....I am waiting for an EOL MCU1 that has been remanufactured with the same old eMMC chip.
 
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Mike Robinson

Member
Feb 3, 2016
521
170
Atlanta GA
I've got over 48,000 miles on my 2018 MS 100D and the only issue I have had is the DRL's. I was thinking of getting the extended warranty, but it doesn't seem to me to be worth it. Even if the DRL's keep going out, I have the option of paying to replace them, or simply live with the yellow look. Should I expect other things to go wrong with my car in the next 52,000 miles? It seems to me, based on my experience thus far, that I would get very little out of the extended warranty. I'll likely have over 100,000 miles on it within 2 years.

Any advice???
 

David29

Supporting Member
Aug 1, 2015
2,173
1,789
DEDHAM, MA
I've got over 48,000 miles on my 2018 MS 100D and the only issue I have had is the DRL's. I was thinking of getting the extended warranty, but it doesn't seem to me to be worth it. Even if the DRL's keep going out, I have the option of paying to replace them, or simply live with the yellow look. Should I expect other things to go wrong with my car in the next 52,000 miles? It seems to me, based on my experience thus far, that I would get very little out of the extended warranty. I'll likely have over 100,000 miles on it within 2 years.

Any advice???

It's all a guessing game and playing the odds, isn't it!

In the same miles or a little more, I had 3 door handles fail, the steering rack fail, one tie rod, an air conditioning actuator, plus the MCU memory failure and parking brake failures. All except the MCU and parking brake failed during the initial warranty period. The latter two were covered by the ESA. Maybe nothing else will break, wouldn't that be great? Or my car could have a second MCU failure, one more door handle (or any of them repeat), or any number of other things. I like having the ESA to protect me against unexpected catastrophic costs, but just like health insurance, you kind of hope you never need it (but then at the end I might wish I hadn't sprung for the 4-year plan!).
 
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Mike Robinson

Member
Feb 3, 2016
521
170
Atlanta GA
It's all a guessing game and playing the odds, isn't it!

In the same miles or a little more, I had 3 door handles fail, the steering rack fail, one tie rod, an air conditioning actuator, plus the MCU memory failure and parking brake failures. All except the MCU and parking brake failed during the initial warranty period. The latter two were covered by the ESA. Maybe nothing else will break, wouldn't that be great? Or my car could have a second MCU failure, one more door handle (or any of them repeat), or any number of other things. I like having the ESA to protect me against unexpected catastrophic costs, but just like health insurance, you kind of hope you never need it (but then at the end I might wish I hadn't sprung for the 4-year plan!).

Thanks for your reply. I'm wondering if the early Tesla's (2012-2015) have more issues than the later ones. It seems that way in reading the posts on this forum.

How many miles do you have on your MS now?
 

TSLA Pilot

Active Member
Mar 12, 2013
1,670
2,306
United States
I've got over 48,000 miles on my 2018 MS 100D and the only issue I have had is the DRL's. I was thinking of getting the extended warranty, but it doesn't seem to me to be worth it. Even if the DRL's keep going out, I have the option of paying to replace them, or simply live with the yellow look. Should I expect other things to go wrong with my car in the next 52,000 miles? It seems to me, based on my experience thus far, that I would get very little out of the extended warranty. I'll likely have over 100,000 miles on it within 2 years.

Any advice???

You're on borrowed time--get the ESA.

Odds are, sadly, you'll have lots of opportunities to use it.

It's not like you'll be able to stop at Pep Boys for a cheap fix of _____ after all!
 
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Mike Robinson

Member
Feb 3, 2016
521
170
Atlanta GA
You're on borrowed time--get the ESA.

Odds are, sadly, you'll have lots of opportunities to use it.

It's not like you'll be able to stop at Pep Boys for a cheap fix of _____ after all!

Thanks for the advice! What year is your MS? How many miles does it have? Have you had lots of repairs after the initial warranty ran out?
 
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David29

Supporting Member
Aug 1, 2015
2,173
1,789
DEDHAM, MA
Thanks for your reply. I'm wondering if the early Tesla's (2012-2015) have more issues than the later ones. It seems that way in reading the posts on this forum.

How many miles do you have on your MS now?

My odometer now shows 50,813 miles after nearly 5 years. I am retired so we have not driven as many miles as many Tesla owners. And for what it is worth, I live in the snowbelt near Boston, so we have salt on the roads in winter, which may or may not have contributed to the parking brake failure and the steering rack failure (likely in that case, according to the factory recall bulletin sent out by Tesla).

I think my repairs have been fairly typical. My impression from forums like this is that most Model S cars of my vintage have had door handle failures and the MCU memory failure. The parking brake problem is less common but not unheard of. The steering rack was a recall item for cars in the snow belt. Oh, and I did need a windshield washer pump replaced (under warranty), not sure how typical that is.
The steering rack, the parking brake, and the memory issue each made the car undriveable, for a total of about 5 weeks out of 5 years, and i had a loaner for 2 of those weeks, not too bad really. Aside from that, the other issues have been relatively minor. On the plus side, I have had no 12V battery failures yet (knock on wood), my car had no fit & finish issues aside from a loose gasket, my leather seats have no premature wear, and everything else on the car still works just fine.
 

Mike Robinson

Member
Feb 3, 2016
521
170
Atlanta GA
My odometer now shows 50,813 miles after nearly 5 years. I am retired so we have not driven as many miles as many Tesla owners. And for what it is worth, I live in the snowbelt near Boston, so we have salt on the roads in winter, which may or may not have contributed to the parking brake failure and the steering rack failure (likely in that case, according to the factory recall bulletin sent out by Tesla).

I think my repairs have been fairly typical. My impression from forums like this is that most Model S cars of my vintage have had door handle failures and the MCU memory failure. The parking brake problem is less common but not unheard of. The steering rack was a recall item for cars in the snow belt. Oh, and I did need a windshield washer pump replaced (under warranty), not sure how typical that is.
The steering rack, the parking brake, and the memory issue each made the car undriveable, for a total of about 5 weeks out of 5 years, and i had a loaner for 2 of those weeks, not too bad really. Aside from that, the other issues have been relatively minor. On the plus side, I have had no 12V battery failures yet (knock on wood), my car had no fit & finish issues aside from a loose gasket, my leather seats have no premature wear, and everything else on the car still works just fine.

Good info, thanks! What model year is your MS?? Did you get the extended warranty??
 

tomas

Out of warranty...
Oct 22, 2012
4,241
3,825
Chicago/Montecito
Good info, thanks! What model year is your MS?? Did you get the extended warranty??
Not sure you should try to draw conclusions based on the few shotgun responses you will get on this forum.

you can see if you devote a few hours to browsing what the common issues are. You are much better off doing that than hoping for comprehensive and useful responses to a post on one thread.

personally, I got the extended warranty for my 2012 for peace of mind. Have only needed twice, so I probably lost on it, but I’d still do it again. This is last year, so down to the wire on Emmc.
 

David29

Supporting Member
Aug 1, 2015
2,173
1,789
DEDHAM, MA
Not sure you should try to draw conclusions based on the few shotgun responses you will get on this forum.

you can see if you devote a few hours to browsing what the common issues are. You are much better off doing that than hoping for comprehensive and useful responses to a post on one thread.

personally, I got the extended warranty for my 2012 for peace of mind. Have only needed twice, so I probably lost on it, but I’d still do it again. This is last year, so down to the wire on Emmc.

Very good point about anecdotal evidence. People posting on social media are self-selecting and may not be representative.
One source I always look at is Consumer Reports. They have been tracking vehicle maintenance issues among their readers for 50 years and appear to have a solid statistical foundation for their ratings. In their April 2020 issue, their ratings of the Tesla Model S showed:
  • Insufficient data for model year 2012
  • Average overall reliability for model years 2013, 2014, and 2017
  • Below average overall reliability for model year 2015 (uh oh, that is my year!)
  • Above average overall reliability for model year 2016
  • Below average overall reliability for model years 2018-2019
There are ratings in each of 17 separate systems/components as well. At a glance, the categories most likely to show lower-than-average reliability over the years are:
  • Noises/Leaks
  • Body hardware
  • In-car electronics -- this was the worst category, with lower-than-average reliability in 6 out of 7 years (and this was the only individual category showing below average in 2018-2019)
  • Drive system -- but only in 2013-2015. Since then, the drive system ratings have been well above average.
Of course, the ratings for a given model year will change over time. As the cars age, they may get either better or worse when compared to cars from other manufacturers for the same model year.

By the way, Model X seems to be much less reliable than Model S, and Model 3 (so far) is better.
 

TSLA Pilot

Active Member
Mar 12, 2013
1,670
2,306
United States
Thanks for the advice! What year is your MS? How many miles does it have? Have you had lots of repairs after the initial warranty ran out?

We've owned nine MS's, from 2013 thru our current '19 and '20 MSP's.

The oldest was a used 2013 P85 with a ~6k VIN; used the ESA a LOT with that one.

Regardless, buying the ESA is a win-win either way.

1. Buy the ESA and have a perfectly reliable car: Tesla pockets the ESA money and helps save our only planet by accelerating the transition to sustainable transport. You got peace of mind for four years.

2. Buy the ESA and have repairs over the next four years: Tesla repairs the car at their expense, minus the $200 deductible. You got peace of mind AND repairs too:)
 
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tomas

Out of warranty...
Oct 22, 2012
4,241
3,825
Chicago/Montecito
We've owned nine MS's, from 2013 thru our current '19 and '20 MSP's.

The oldest was a used 2013 P85 with a ~6k VIN; used the ESA a LOT with that one.

Regardless, buying the ESA is a win-win either way.

1. Buy the ESA and have a perfectly reliable car: Tesla pockets the ESA money and helps save our only planet by accelerating the transition to sustainable transport. You got peace of mind for four years.

2. Buy the ESA and have repairs over the next four years: Tesla repairs the car at their expense, minus the $200 deductible. You got peace of mind AND repairs too:)
I believe you, but to counterbalance the anecdotal bad rap on 2013... I have 2012 P85 with low VIN and have 3 friends who still have their early low VIN 13s that as a group have had next to no ESA issues. That synchs with the CR statistics quoted above.
 

Mike Robinson

Member
Feb 3, 2016
521
170
Atlanta GA
We've owned nine MS's, from 2013 thru our current '19 and '20 MSP's.

The oldest was a used 2013 P85 with a ~6k VIN; used the ESA a LOT with that one.

Regardless, buying the ESA is a win-win either way.

1. Buy the ESA and have a perfectly reliable car: Tesla pockets the ESA money and helps save our only planet by accelerating the transition to sustainable transport. You got peace of mind for four years.

2. Buy the ESA and have repairs over the next four years: Tesla repairs the car at their expense, minus the $200 deductible. You got peace of mind AND repairs too:)

I agree with you. My problem is that the ESA would only last me 2 years, not 4.
 

Olle

Member
Jul 17, 2013
783
402
Orlando, FL
To the best of my knowledge, every Model S and X (and 3) have zero light bulbs. All lighting is LED.

For Tesla to expect us to pay four figures for a defective headlight, that is somehow, arbitrarily NOT included in the ESA, is another example of "Great Products, Terrible Company."

Insanely poor customer service. They need to revise the ESA language ASAP. I would escalate this if I were you, but not sure if Tesla gives a damn anymore, at least at the middle-management level.

Let us know how it goes.
Update: I took the car in for a failed trunk latch and again asked them to replace the DRL. This time they actually did replace the DRL under ESA. Good job Tesla!
 
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