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Pictures of radar unit obstructed: please post yours

Discussion in 'Model S: User Interface' started by Andyw2100, Jan 31, 2015.

  1. Andyw2100

    Andyw2100 Well-Known Member

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    #1 Andyw2100, Jan 31, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2015
    For those of us who drive in wintry conditions, there is definitely an issue involving the radar unit becoming obstructed with snow and ice. When this happens, at a minimum we lose cruise control. Some of us have also lost all driver assistance functions. Clearing the obstruction does not necessarily bring back the lost functions immediately, and in some cases it can take some time (days, 50-100 miles) for the lost functionality to come back. I was even scheduled for a service center visit to re-calibrate my system before it eventually apparently re-calibrated on its own when this happened to me.

    There is a thread where some of this is being discussed here:

    Cruise Control unavailable, with a twist (loss of all driver assistance features too)


    The radar unit becoming blocked is definitely a wide-spread problem. I have written to Tesla about it, and I included the picture below. I think if we all take pictures whenever our radar units become obstructed and post them here, we'll quickly be able to make Tesla aware of how serious this problem really is. The pictures should also help Tesla see exactly how the units are becoming obstructed. Once Tesla realizes the magnitude and severity of the problem, I have no doubt that they will come up with a solution for it. That's what they do.

    Let's help each other and Tesla out by all taking an extra minute or two when our radar units become obstructed to snap a quick photo, and then post the photo in this thread. Once we have a good number of photos here, I'll make sure to make Tesla aware of this repository of photos. If you would please include the time and location the photo was taken, and the systems affected, as I have done below, that would also be helpful.

    Also it would be great if we could really try to keep this thread focused, and limited to the posting of pictures and the very limited description of the result of the pictures. (Please see my example below.) We can use the thread referenced above for normal discussion. But if this thread could be kept basically to photos only, with the short descriptions, I think that would be really beneficial when we try to get Tesla personnel involved.

    Thanks!

    So to make this crystal clear: If you have a picture of your radar unit obstructed, please post it here, in this thread.

    If you have something to say on the topic, or even related to it, please click here: Cruise Control unavailable, with a twist (loss of all driver assistance features too
    (and please DO NOT post in this thread.)



    Radar Unit Frozen.jpg

    January 28, 2015
    Ithaca, NY

    Cruise Control functionality lost
    Driver Assistance functionality lost
    Service Center visit scheduled (Functionality returned before SC visit, after about 24 hours and 80-100 miles)
     
  2. mrElbe

    mrElbe Member

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    Here is mine yesterday. Clearing it restored cruise control availability.
     

    Attached Files:

  3. Travelguy

    Travelguy Member

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    Similar problem with my BMW X5 as well and I had this problem with my MB E350 before that. The right combo of temp, precipitation, and traffic causes the cr$p to build up and away goes functionality...
     
  4. Haggy

    Haggy Member

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    I don't have this problem but it seems like a design flaw. The recess will make it accumulate slush, while on other cars I have/had, the sensor was behind something such as a plastic shell with an emblem. I'm not sure where it is on most cars, since it's hidden, but the first car I had with ACC was my wife's 2006 Acura RL. If you look at a picture, the center hood ornament hides the radar. It's clear why snow would blow away.
     
  5. TTT

    TTT Member

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    Page 2 of release notes:

    TACC is not designed for adverse weather conditions such as heavy rain, snow, slippery roads, etc.


    You should not use the system in such conditions.
     
  6. Andyw2100

    Andyw2100 Well-Known Member

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    Radar Unit Frozen Feb 5.jpg

    February 5, 2015
    Ithaca, NY

    Cruise Control functionality only lost sporadically
     
  7. yobigd20

    yobigd20 Well-Known Member

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    Yea it just kind of seems like they picked the worst possible spot for it. Design flaw. Oh well.
     
  8. wayner

    wayner Active Member

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    Methinks the Tesla engineers don't have too much experience in snow. They should spend a winter up in Kapuskasing where GM has (had?) a cold weather vehicle testing facility.
     
  9. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    The radar emitter on my wife's Volvo has a convex plastic cover over it, as opposed to the concave radar emitter on the Model S. Tesla could do something like this.

    dsc03866.jpg

    Though, the low placement on the Tesla still presents a problem.
     
  10. Andyw2100

    Andyw2100 Well-Known Member

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    Radar Unit Frozen Feb 8.jpg

    February 8, 2015
    Syracuse, NY

    Cruise Control functionality unknown (Did not test it during drive through snow)
     
  11. youyouxue

    youyouxue Member

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    You would think that Tesla would include some kind of heating element as part of the cold weather package...
     
  12. What_Was_That?

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    We just drove from Florida to California thru blizzard conditions in NM. Our radar also covered with ice. Think the heating of this or revision to the design should be standard with the unit. Not that I would drive with cruise on in the conditions we went thru but we didn't realize what was wrong until sometime during the next day's drive.
     
  13. thecloud

    thecloud As rhythm raced inside, the ship came alive

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    This is a whole new definition of being ICE'd.

    I wonder if you could just cut out a rectangular piece of clear plastic, say from an empty 2-liter soda bottle, and wedge it in front of the radar to keep snow from building up there while you're driving.
     
  14. SabrToothSqrl

    SabrToothSqrl Active Member

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    It's like my cars lack of effective heating, Tesla doesn't know COLD exists.
     
  15. kort677

    kort677 Active Member

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    hopefully the people at tesla will see this and adapt
     
  16. JPP

    JPP Active Member

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    FWIW Bonnie noted that on her new X the radar unit sits behind the plastic nose cone/fascia. I would assume this will appear in some future S update.
     
  17. roblab

    roblab Active Member

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    I would think this would work. I'd be interested if anyone tries it. I suppose it could lap over to the grille area, and fastened with zip ties easy enough.

    But since I don't live in "snow/ice" or anywhere near it, I don't think I will experiment.
     
  18. Barry

    Barry Member

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    Maybe they chose that spot so people wouldn't use cruise control when it should not be used.
     
  19. wayner

    wayner Active Member

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    If you're just wedging it in then I doubt that it will stay there given the force that it will be subject to. Tesla should just correct this design flaw that is pretty obvious to anyone who has ever driven in snow.
     
  20. grichard

    grichard Member De-Luxe

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    Are all common plastics transparent at the frequency that the radar uses? "Clear" in the visible spectrum doesn't imply transparency at other frequencies.
     

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