TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker and becoming a Supporting Member. For more info: Support TMC

Scary!!! Steering wheel difficult to turn while waiting at signal and car was stuck.

Discussion in 'Model S' started by loveforEV, May 14, 2019.

  1. loveforEV

    loveforEV Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2018
    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    01719
    Today, I was at a signal couple minutes from home and waiting to turn right. The steering wheel froze and 'Autopilot safety/convenience features unavailable ' message popped up. When I tried to turn the wheel it was resisting and I could feel some vibration as you can see from the video. I was blocking the traffic but I had no way to move the car. The acceleration did nothing and the car was undriveable.
    I called up road side assistance and they asked me to do a couple of reboots and a power reset .But nothing helped. So they ended up towing the car. I had to wait for 2 hours for the tow truck to show up. But overall it was a very scary exp and I hope the service center figures out the issue as I don't want to have the steering wheel freeze when on a highway.

    I had not turned on autopilot or anything and I don't understand why the warning message is about autopilot being unavailable. Also, the issue appeared out of no where and only two weeks back I had my 2 year service done.

    BTW, mine is a Model S,75D, Dec 2016 built HW 2.0 car.

    Has anyone had a similar experience ? What was the fix ?
     
  2. DCEV

    DCEV Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2019
    Messages:
    365
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Do you have a video?
     
  3. loveforEV

    loveforEV Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2018
    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    01719
    Yes, I do . Will try to upload it today.
     
  4. loveforEV

    loveforEV Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2018
    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    01719
    Here is the video. As you can see when I try to move the steering, it resists back and vibrates.
     
  5. Huskyf

    Huskyf Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2018
    Messages:
    159
    Location:
    Geneva - CH
    Are you in P in this vidéo when you are on Park mode it's not possible to turn wheel
     
    • Like x 1
  6. Big Earl

    Big Earl Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    2,308
    Location:
    Springfield, VA
    The steering wheel should turn freely in park as long as the car is on, which it is in this video.
     
  7. BigNick

    BigNick Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2017
    Messages:
    173
    Location:
    Pennsylvania, USA
    EXTERMINATE ALL HUMANS!

    If I had to guess there is a hardware problem with the steering rack position sensor or something along those lines.

    But if it gives the message that AP features are unavailable it shouldn’t be applying any resistance to the steering wheel. Loss of power assist on a Tesla will require a huge amount of force to get the wheel to turn when not rolling, given its wide, low-profile tires and weight.
     
    • Like x 2
  8. loveforEV

    loveforEV Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2018
    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    01719
    Yes, I was in park when I shot this video. But moving it into drive did not help either. Same behavior.
     
  9. ytwytw

    ytwytw Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2017
    Messages:
    344
    Location:
    Canada
    Sounds like steering component is failing

    How many miles do you have on the car?
     
  10. loveforEV

    loveforEV Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2018
    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    01719
  11. robg

    robg Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2019
    Messages:
    71
    Location:
    Seattle
  12. loveforEV

    loveforEV Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2018
    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    01719
    The car is 2016 December make. So it did not qualify for the recall.
     
  13. Ande

    Ande Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2017
    Messages:
    555
    Location:
    Norway
    Geez, some defective servo motor, grab the wheel like a man would work, not the wimpy two finger grip
     
    • Funny x 2
  14. loveforEV

    loveforEV Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2018
    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    01719
    Update:
    Heard back from the service center. They have diagnosed an electrical component failure in the steering wheel and will be replacing the steering column. He also mentioned to me that this kind of failure is very rare and so they will be sending the old parts to California for further research.
     
    • Informative x 10
  15. realvvk

    realvvk Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2017
    Messages:
    202
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    Thanks for the update! This is concerning but not entirely unexpected. Sorry it happened to you. Hopefully the car will be fixed permanently and sounds like under warranty.
     
  16. quickstrike12

    quickstrike12 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2018
    Messages:
    283
    Location:
    Fort Worth Texas
    Am I wrong....as I understand it there is no electrical way by either power assist or servo or AP that the actual linkage between the steering wheel and the steering rack that the car cannot be manually turned. Basically the driver would always be able to steer the car in any failure. Albeit difficult and with no assistance from Hydraulic or servo.

    Did the OP turn the wheel HARD? basically force it to turn or were you just being gentle for fear of braking something?
    What I’m getting at is the elephant in the room. In a total power failure scenario the car should always steer as it it is stopping.
     
  17. loveforEV

    loveforEV Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2018
    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    01719
    I was definitely being gentle with the fear of breaking something and making it worse. So it is possible that it could have turned by force but I also noticed that the steering was resisting and pushing back with some weird vibrations.

    and yes, the repair will be completely covered under warranty.
     
    • Like x 1
  18. robg

    robg Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2019
    Messages:
    71
    Location:
    Seattle
    Yes, the Tesla system is electrically assisted power steering (not "steer by wire"), so there is a direct mechanical linkage from the steering wheel to the front wheels. In general, eps systems tend to be harder to turn (vs hydraulic) in cases where power is lost because you have to overcome the resistance/weight of the eps motor. So its very possible you could think that the steering is "locked" when in fact it just needs a lot of effort to turn it.
     
    • Informative x 1
  19. David29

    David29 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2015
    Messages:
    1,610
    Location:
    DEDHAM, MA
    When my steering failed a few months ago, apparently due to the type of bolt failure that is the subject of the recall mentioned above, I got more warning messages, and I think one of the messages said something about a steering failure.
    As also mentioned above, I was able to wrestle the car to the curb, but it took considerable effort, and moving the steering off center caused it to make considerable noise and vibration. I felt fortunate at the time that I was just pulling out of my driveway onto the street, at low speed. I did not feel that I could safely drive it to the service center a couple of miles away, so i waited for the flatbed. It felt even harder than when I had a previous car's power steering fail, and had to steer by just my own force. This entailed much more resistance. So yes, i could steer, but not well enough to feel comfortable trying to maneuver in traffic. i would not like to think what the accident report would say if i had tried to steer through traffic but had an accident because I could not maneuver well enough....
    Tesla ended up replacing the steering rack under warranty (hopefully with those new bolts, too!).
     
    • Like x 1
  20. BulldogsRus

    BulldogsRus Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2018
    Messages:
    147
    Location:
    Boston
    I think the issue was that you were currently listening to Adele which makes most people want to drive into an embankment. In this case the car locked up to protect you from injury.

    Man, Tesla thinks of everything! :D
     
    • Funny x 6
    • Love x 1

Share This Page

  • About Us

    Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.
  • Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


    SUPPORT TMC