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"Refresh" Headlights, separate and repair DRL?

Proxlamus

Member
Jun 11, 2017
78
54
Colorado
Hey guys,

I'm frustrated with the burnt out DRL LED accent lights on the 2017+ refresh Model S headlights. Ive read the dozens of threads with people with the same issues.

Can anyone confirm if the headlights can have the adhesive heated, softened and cracked open to do a repair on the lights ? Retrofitting a new LED strip shouldn't be difficult once its open.

I see people have done it on older headlights but im confused why it hasn't been done on my refresh lights?

I'm tempted to buy one from eBay with busted tabs and try it out on my own before I damage mine.
 
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Proxlamus

Member
Jun 11, 2017
78
54
Colorado
My 2017 is already past 105k miles. So Im well outside warranty.
I've also seen posts where people have legit had the headlights replaced up to 7 times.

What I'm looking for is someone who has had experience heating and separating the headlights and whether it's possible to retrofit or repair on your own.
 
My 2017 is already past 105k miles. So Im well outside warranty.
I've also seen posts where people have legit had the headlights replaced up to 7 times.

What I'm looking for is someone who has had experience heating and separating the headlights and whether it's possible to retrofit or repair on your own.

I hear you, but I bet they will replace the headlight regardless since they have admitted a known defect. In fact, I am very curious to learn what they tell you, if you are willing to try...
 

beatle

Active Member
Aug 31, 2019
1,273
742
Springfield, VA
I think the number of refreshed cars that are now out of warranty are few. Of those few, I bet even fewer are willing to bake and pry their headlights apart to replace some LED strips. I consider myself moderately handy, but attempting to retrofit projectors in a couple sets of my truck's headlights ended with some pretty miserable failures, and it wasn't fun getting there. Hats off to enterprising individuals who are able to fix these defects, however.
 
I hear you, but I bet they will replace the headlight regardless since they have admitted a known defect. In fact, I am very curious to learn what they tell you, if you are willing to try...
They won't. They'll want to charge you. You're better off buying replacement online for cheaper. However, if you do buy from Tesla, since the headlights themselves would have warranty, you can get them replaced if they crap out again.

I went through a lot of headlights before landing on the ones I have right now that's been solid.

Also, you cannot bake these open. They're permaseal. At the temperature where you can separate the "seal" you'll be melting other parts of the headlights. The only possibility is using a heat gun, and effectively melting/cutting into it. Of course this presents a whole another set of problem, which is sealing. Considering the way the headlight is designed to sit, anything less than a 100% seal, you'll likely have condensation issue.

Not worth the headache. Unless you're tremendously bored.
 

krsgio

Member
Nov 8, 2018
419
417
Colorado
Also, you cannot bake these open. They're permaseal. At the temperature where you can separate the "seal" you'll be melting other parts of the headlights. The only possibility is using a heat gun, and effectively melting/cutting into it. Of course this presents a whole another set of problem, which is sealing. Considering the way the headlight is designed to sit, anything less than a 100% seal, you'll likely have condensation issue.
All their headlights are permasealed, while its a pain in the ass to open its totally do-able without 'melting' or 'cutting' anything. Using something like a butyl instead of something like RTV will prevent condensation issues when re-sealing the headlights. I've opened and chrome deleted my HID headlights without any condensation issues. Tons of retrofitters can do the same. It just boils down to if you have the know how and motivation to open them up to even fix the LED problem in the first place.
 
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BioDiesel & Electrons
Nov 20, 2020
279
217
Tacoma, WA
Jumping on this thread - as I want to open up the ModelY headlights and de-chrome the inside headlight (maybe modify the drl light output also) but the permaseal has me freaked out.

I’ve done other butyl headlights - separated and resealed with no issues.

Because of the permaseal - I might farm this out to a lighting specialist, though it is a DIY type job...
 

DRK KNT

Member
Sep 12, 2018
31
33
Richmond, BC
I noticed the DRL fading a month after warranty expired. Left side has leds on top of headlight completely out. Right side is better but not 100%.
I filled out a service request twice at different locations explaining the situation and how I have heard of others getting entire headlights replaced even if out of warranty but they quoted me $4000 to replace both headlights. Might have been out while in warranty but never noticed until a friend told me to check them. Friend got his replaced under warranty.
 

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