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Phone as key working intermittently

I haven't had trouble with the app. (Haven't really been using it as a key because I haven't driven the car except in the driveway, I'm a secondary driver though.) Yesterday, when my mom and I got back from shopping, the car locked with all three of my keys (including my phone) inside though. They were in my fanny pack and I had taken it off and put it in my backpack because it was a long drive. Mom used the fob she keeps on the table to open it though. If we're out and it won't open for me despite having the phone in my fanny pack, I take the card key out and tap it on the driver's side.
 
Model Y, S22 ultra owner here. I've had this issue as long as I've had the car, a few weeks now. It is getting really upsetting that I can't consistently get in my car and/or drive it without pulling out the keycard. This is much worse than having a fob. I've rebooted car, rebooted phone, removed phone as key, restarted bluetooth, kept phone in foreground, set to never turn off app, gone to service. No luck. This is particularly infuriating when I'm the cold or in the rain, or in the cold rain, and have to fumble pulling a card out of my wallet.
 
Using IPhone 13, Phone as key has worked perfectly since I go the car. Was having problems with bluetooth connecting the phone in the car and they changed the occupancy sensor. phone connects like a champ now, but the phone as key is intermittant. Multiple times now I've walked up to the car, grabbed the handle and nothing. Car is not unlocked. Same with Trunk, same with opening the charge door, releasing the charger etc. Just wondering if anyone else has had this issue. When it does do this, typically if I unlock the phone or open the app, it works. Have never had to use the key card or anything like that. I have a loaner since yesterday and no issues. Service of course said they can't find anything and broke my window on top of it (accidents happen), but its frustrating as it takes 3 service visits to get anything done.
For a while, I thought I had it fixed. After restarting the touchscreen and my phone, I trashed the Tesla app on my iPhone 14 Pro, reloaded it and set up my phone as a phone key, again. For a week, everything was fine. Today, I was leaving the grocery store, and went to open the trunk, manually. It wouldn't open. Finally had to use the app to open the trunk. Got in the car OK, and when I pressed on the brake, I got the row of icons on the left side of the screen. However, when I tried to put the car in Drive, nothing happened. Tried again, and got the animation saying I had to use the key card. Sometimes, if I wait a moment, it will work without using the key card. This time, no joy.

What on earth is going on. So far as I know, I have everything set up properly on my phone (Location always on, Bluetooth on, Background app refresh on, and cellular data on), but the phone key stops working intermittently still. This is getting to be a real pain...
 
For a while, I thought I had it fixed. After restarting the touchscreen and my phone, I trashed the Tesla app on my iPhone 14 Pro, reloaded it and set up my phone as a phone key, again. For a week, everything was fine. Today, I was leaving the grocery store, and went to open the trunk, manually. It wouldn't open. Finally had to use the app to open the trunk. Got in the car OK, and when I pressed on the brake, I got the row of icons on the left side of the screen. However, when I tried to put the car in Drive, nothing happened. Tried again, and got the animation saying I had to use the key card. Sometimes, if I wait a moment, it will work without using the key card. This time, no joy.

What on earth is going on. So far as I know, I have everything set up properly on my phone (Location always on, Bluetooth on, Background app refresh on, and cellular data on), but the phone key stops working intermittently still. This is getting to be a real pain...
It just happened to me this morning as well. I set up a service appointment for some other things and listed this company as well. It's unlikely they can fix it, but at least the company is recorded. I'm gonna log the time of this morning's error for them in a bit. This is truly frustrating. I bought a key fob a while back and I may have to start carrying it around so I don't have to keep opening the app to unlock and pulling out my wallet to drive.
 
I haven't had trouble with the app. (Haven't really been using it as a key because I haven't driven the car except in the driveway, I'm a secondary driver though.) Yesterday, when my mom and I got back from shopping, the car locked with all three of my keys (including my phone) inside though. They were in my fanny pack and I had taken it off and put it in my backpack because it was a long drive. Mom used the fob she keeps on the table to open it though. If we're out and it won't open for me despite having the phone in my fanny pack, I take the card key out and tap it on the driver's side.
I suspect your phone is not actually set up as a key. The car will not lock with the phone inside if it is.

Before you object, make sure you understand what it actually means to add a phone to the locks. You do have to pair your phone's bluetooth, but that's not enough. You need to go through the procedure of adding it after that, which requires using the card and adding the phone to the locks. I think you also need to be added as a driver in the app using the "Manage Drivers" button, but I'm not certain about that.

You can use the phone's app to unlock the car without adding it to the locks, but that's not the way it's supposed to work.
 
I haven't had problems for almost two years of owning my Model 3. But last night, the car updated software to 2022.40.4.2, which includes a new mode to allow the car to automatically unlock when the driver approaches, and allow the driver to unlock all doors by long-pressing the unlock button.

I decided to try it, so I enabled the function in the car, went back inside the house for a few minutes, and then came back for something. I tried to open the passenger door, and it would not open. I opened the app, and press the unlock function, which appeared to work but still the passenger door would not open. But the driver's door did unlock a few minutes later. I was going to disable that new function, but it was disabled already, along with the previously enabled auto unlock when parked. Hmmm....

I rebooted the UI, and next time I came out, the passenger door opened normally. I'm wondering if this update was the cause, or whether it was a coincidence.

It did occur to me after this that having a phone function to reboot the car would be very useful. Of course, it would only work when in park.
 
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stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
13,532
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I haven't had problems for almost two years of owning my Model 3. But last night, the car updated software to 2022.40.4.2, which includes a new mode to allow the car to automatically unlock when the driver approaches, and allow the driver to unlock all doors by long-pressing the unlock button.

I decided to try it, so I enabled the function in the car, went back inside the house for a few minutes, and then came back for something. I tried to open the passenger door, and it would not open. I opened the app, and press the unlock function, which appeared to work but still the passenger door would not open. But the driver's door did unlock a few minutes later. I was going to disable that new function, but it was disabled already, along with the previously enabled auto unlock when parked. Hmmm....

I rebooted the UI, and next time I came out, the passenger door opened normally. I'm wondering if this update was the cause, or whether it was a coincidence.

It did occur to me after this that having a phone function to reboot the car would be very useful. Of course, it would only work when in park.
Someone had the same issue in the other thread. Check all your profiles (including easy entry) to see if driver door unlock mode option is enabled. With that enabled, only the driver door will unlock, all the other doors will not.

 
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Someone had the same issue in the other thread. Check all your profiles (including easy entry) to see if driver door unlock mode option is enabled. With that enabled, only the driver door will unlock, all the other doors will not.

I'll check, but it didn't seem to change when I changed profiles. However, I'll investigate further.

Thanks for the link; I didn't think it would already be in the manual. But the fact that even the phone app was unable to unlock the passenger door was a bit strange to me. I guess we won't use that function, because in our garage, the driver's side requires walking around the back of the car, squeezing between the garage door and car, then moving the charge cable out of the way, so we use the passenger side door a lot.

I'll look harder for the other thread. I didn't see it yet.
 
I've also been experience the same phone key issues. I had my Model 3 in at Tesla for a tire rotation a couple days ago and I mentioned the issue to the service advisor.

The invoice had a message on it saying that the phone key issue is a known characteristic of firmware 2022.40, and that 2022.44 will resolve it when available.
Good to know a software update should resolve the issue, but if target they revert me back if the update that corrects the issue isn't available already.
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Moderator
Nov 28, 2018
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Riverside Co. CA
I've also been experience the same phone key issues. I had my Model 3 in at Tesla for a tire rotation a couple days ago and I mentioned the issue to the service advisor.

The invoice had a message on it saying that the phone key issue is a known characteristic of firmware 2022.40, and that 2022.44 will resolve it when available.

I have definitely had some phone key issues since I got to 2022.40, where my iPhone had worked basically 99%+ as a phone key before.

I just chalked it up to firmware update shenanigans (and saw a couple threads here about it). Thanks for passing on that info.
 
2022.40.4.2 updated yesterday and my phone as key worked fine this morning. I had my key fob with me yesterday so I wasn't absolute sure there wasn't a problem. I tried putting the fob in the trunk, but I saw it pick up briefly on the key list. I dropped mine off for service this morning and had this issue on my list. SA said it's probably a firmware issue as most of us suspect as well.
 
For a while, I thought I had it fixed. After restarting the touchscreen and my phone, I trashed the Tesla app on my iPhone 14 Pro, reloaded it and set up my phone as a phone key, again. For a week, everything was fine. Today, I was leaving the grocery store, and went to open the trunk, manually. It wouldn't open. Finally had to use the app to open the trunk. Got in the car OK, and when I pressed on the brake, I got the row of icons on the left side of the screen. However, when I tried to put the car in Drive, nothing happened. Tried again, and got the animation saying I had to use the key card. Sometimes, if I wait a moment, it will work without using the key card. This time, no joy.

What on earth is going on. So far as I know, I have everything set up properly on my phone (Location always on, Bluetooth on, Background app refresh on, and cellular data on), but the phone key stops working intermittently still. This is getting to be a real pain...
Another incident with my M3LR refusing to start, and asking for the key card. This morning, I went out to the garage, unplugged the Tesla, and opened the driver’s door. I realized I had left my wet umbrella in the car, so t took it out to let it dry in the garage. Got in the car, and when I stepped on the brake, no icons appeared on the left side of the touchscreen. I tried to put it “in gear”, and got the indication to use the key card. Tried a couple more times, but no joy. Then, I opened the driver’s door, and voila, the icons appeared and the car started as normal.

One other think I noticed. When I got into the car, my name appeared at the top of the screen, indicating I was the driver. When I openedand closed the door (and the car “started”), it was gone. I feel the car is trying to tell me something, but I have no idea what.😒
 
Mine has done this a number of times since the last update (2022.40.4). I have an S22 Ultra. Had to use my card key each time. This has not occurred with my wife's iphone, but I'm usually the one driving. One time, I could see that the car picked up her phone as the key when typically, it detects mine. There seems to be some logic that detects the phone getting on from the driver's side. Either way, it's annoying.
Just about the exact same thing, here. I noticed it was picking up 67Queen's iphone before mine before it started not seeing my Samsung. Still does that, it sees her phone, but doesn't mine. Thanks for posting this, I was starting to think it was my phone, not the car. Apparently not.

And it is random and inconsistent. Sometimes, it will eventually unlock the doors, but then I have to use the keycard to drive. This morning, it was the opposite. Had to use the keycard to get in, but it then saw my phone and let me drive without tapping the console.
 

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