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Passenger Door Closing and Drain Plug Removal Safety Issue

Discussion in 'Model S: Driving Dynamics' started by lolachampcar, Feb 13, 2013.

  1. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

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    I started a separate post for the safety aspect of the information. Mods: Feel free to move as needed.

    I ran the idea of removing the door drain plug by Tesla to solve the passenger door hard to close problem. Apparently the SRS side airbags use pressure sensors as part of their deployment hardware and removing a plug can change the equation. In short, Tesla suggests leaving the plugs in for safety reasons and letting service address the door closing problem.
     
  2. Zextraterrestrial

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    I pulled mine out yesterday and the front one had a little water in it (I just washed my car) I thought it might be better out since there was a little moisture + the door seems to close much easier.

    maybe I'll put them back.
     
  3. byt

    byt Member

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    I took my car into the Menlo Park Repair Shop and they took the plugs out to solve the problem. This was about a couple weeks ago.
     
  4. Todd Burch

    Todd Burch Electron Pilot

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    Yes, I'm not going to name names, but I will say that this original "unofficial" solution came from an employee in Tesla service. If this truly causes a danger regarding side airbags, Tesla needs to spread it to their folks.
     
  5. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

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    This seems to be a right hand left hand thing as I asked Freemont Service about the plug removal fix and Dania Service got back with me about the SRS concerns..........
     
  6. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

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    The airbag bit does not ring true at all. I'm confident they're based purely on accelerometers. pressure change would be too slow and nothing like a drain plug is going to impact things enough to affect airbag deployment.
    HowStuffWorks
     
  7. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    I think this might be a bit overstating things. The sensor works by seeing a spike in air pressure as the door is crushed (apparently this is pretty typical for side air bags). A crash is a sudden event; air simply has to be restricted not totally sealed. This means it can leak, just not at a high rate. I've seen the inside of the door and there are various seals to cover apertures, but they're very obviously not completely air-tight. So I think another small hole isn't going to make a big difference.
     
  8. jomo25

    jomo25 P4398

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    If this was changing the pressure profile enough to affect the side airbag deployment, how would it operate if the window was open? I assume the airbag would still deploy in a crash that warranted it even if the window was open, so wouldn't that thwart this theory?
     
  9. jomo25

    jomo25 P4398

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    That said, I still think asking Tesla to fix the problem is the right answer. I guess the plugs are there for *some* reason if not this.
     
  10. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

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    I need to see something that supports that contention, Doug. It just doesn't sound right to me. Air is too compressible, IMO, for a system to work effectively. AFAIK they all work with directional accelerometers.
     
  11. Jamie3

    Jamie3 Member

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    I just got my car yesterday and I am experiencing it is hard to close the passenger door sometimes I have to put the window down.
    what do I do
     
  12. bob_p

    bob_p Member

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    I noticed this problem after getting my car in January - and had several times when the passenger door was left partially opened. But since then, really haven't noticed this issue. Either we've gotten used to closer the door firmer, or it's gotten easier to close.
     
  13. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

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    second the easier to close.... After a month or so my wife stopped commenting on the door and it truly did get easier to close. I think this is one of those things you just live through as it gets better.
     
  14. Larry Hutchinson

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    Compression of the air in the door will happen way sooner than any accelerometer could detect. A sudden pressure spike is an early indication of a collision.

    That said, I doubt the drain hole would have much effect if open given the speed and magnitude of a collision.
     
  15. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

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    agreed but the advice from the service center was basically "why take the chance?"
     

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