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Servicing & maintenance

Tuxs

Member
Nov 5, 2019
79
8
UK
Thinking of getting my first ever Tesla by ordering the M3.

Can I check are Tesla’s similar to engine cars in regards to servicing etc?
How expensive are they?
Where do you service a Tesla?
Are repairs etc expensive? Where do you go to repair a Tesla?

Thanks
Andy
 

pgkevet

Active Member
Jul 1, 2019
1,135
972
mid wales
Tesla owners will tell you that Teslas never need oil changes etc and the brakes last forever bacause of regeneratve braking and Tesla sales will tell you similar things. Then when you look into it you discover that brakes need servicing because they aren't used enough so really should be checked over and cleaned annually anyway. They are heavy cars and tyre wear can be an issue so alignment should be checked regularly too. In theory any garage can do those things but apart from a few newer EV garages the average garage is less comfortable with dealing with them and digging through the trim to find stuff. Tesla will do this for you at Tesla eyewatering prices (recently had my brakes and alignments serviced/done at 1 year on my S for nearly £400). Because of the limited service centres and pressures of selling and fixing new car issues you can bet it'll be 4-6 weeks from booking anything non-critical to getting an appointment...and since you hac hardly ever get anyoen to speak to on the phone you either drive to the centre in perosn or use that ap and hope that the appt you made doesnt get changed/cancelled etc just when you;ld arranged time off.

New Teslas are expensive or very expensive depending on model. Folk will brag about over the air updates but essentially you buy an excellent battery and decent power train and a computer. Computers are obsolete as soon as you buy them. Yes you can update computer hardware but after a short while you find your PC really needs a faster processor and bus system etc and software just doesn't run well on the one you bought 2-3 years ago or Apple/samsung has brought out a new must-have phone and your current one has lost street cred. Teslas are the same - promises of al the things it will do 'soon; and the it needs better hardware to do it.

Your old PC or Iphone just became devalued when you want to sell it and not so many places are keen to accept the trade-in.

After any warranty period has run out Tesla repair costs are at their same eyewatering fees and in the last year they have started to interpret what is covered by warranty more favourably for themselves. They also tend to replace whole subunits rather than repair them so you hear stories of folk who really only needed someone to track down and swap out the fuse or the on-board chip or at least trade in for a refurbished one but they got stung for a couple of £K. The same with dents.. watch out or they'll change the panel where a body shop would straighten in for cheapish.

The trouble is that driving the darn thing is fun with its instant power and all the sell-it-to-yourself bollocks about saving the planet and the real truth that it's not a bad motor to be in if you do into a pile-up but even if fuel is cheap then overall ownership isn't.
 
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Tam

Well-Known Member
Nov 25, 2012
8,510
7,328
Visalia, CA
Can I check are Tesla’s similar to engine cars in regards to servicing etc?

The recommended maintenance:

Car Maintenance

Cabin Air Filter every 2 years

Tire Rotation, Balance, Wheel Alignment: Every 10,000-12,000 miles

Brake Fluid Test: every 2 years

Air Conditioning Service: every 6 years

Winter Care: Brake cleaning/lubricating every 10,000-12,000 miles.

How expensive are they?

I would say it's more expensive than Ford/Toyota but cheaper than other luxury brands.

That above list of recommended maintenance could be done by any competent auto-mechanic if it's cheaper.

...Where do you service a Tesla?..

There's 1 Tesla Service Center in Ireland and 10 in Great Britain.

...Are repairs etc expensive?

For the first 4 years or 50,000 miles whichever first, you are covered with a new car warranty.

But after that, the repairs can be quite expensive as pointed out by @pgkevet above.
 

pdk42

Active Member
Jul 17, 2019
1,028
1,007
Leamington
Tesla owners will tell you that Teslas never need oil changes etc and the brakes last forever bacause of regeneratve braking and Tesla sales will tell you similar things. Then when you look into it you discover that brakes need servicing because they aren't used enough so really should be checked over and cleaned annually anyway. They are heavy cars and tyre wear can be an issue so alignment should be checked regularly too. In theory any garage can do those things but apart from a few newer EV garages the average garage is less comfortable with dealing with them and digging through the trim to find stuff. Tesla will do this for you at Tesla eyewatering prices (recently had my brakes and alignments serviced/done at 1 year on my S for nearly £400). Because of the limited service centres and pressures of selling and fixing new car issues you can bet it'll be 4-6 weeks from booking anything non-critical to getting an appointment...and since you hac hardly ever get anyoen to speak to on the phone you either drive to the centre in perosn or use that ap and hope that the appt you made doesnt get changed/cancelled etc just when you;ld arranged time off.

New Teslas are expensive or very expensive depending on model. Folk will brag about over the air updates but essentially you buy an excellent battery and decent power train and a computer. Computers are obsolete as soon as you buy them. Yes you can update computer hardware but after a short while you find your PC really needs a faster processor and bus system etc and software just doesn't run well on the one you bought 2-3 years ago or Apple/samsung has brought out a new must-have phone and your current one has lost street cred. Teslas are the same - promises of al the things it will do 'soon; and the it needs better hardware to do it.

Your old PC or Iphone just became devalued when you want to sell it and not so many places are keen to accept the trade-in.

After any warranty period has run out Tesla repair costs are at their same eyewatering fees and in the last year they have started to interpret what is covered by warranty more favourably for themselves. They also tend to replace whole subunits rather than repair them so you hear stories of folk who really only needed someone to track down and swap out the fuse or the on-board chip or at least trade in for a refurbished one but they got stung for a couple of £K. The same with dents.. watch out or they'll change the panel where a body shop would straighten in for cheapish.

The trouble is that driving the darn thing is fun with its instant power and all the sell-it-to-yourself bollocks about saving the planet and the real truth that it's not a bad motor to be in if you do into a pile-up but even if fuel is cheap then overall ownership isn't.

Ha - a nicely cynical (but in many ways accurate) summary! I'm hoping that the growth of organisations like Cleevely EV sprout up so that we have alternatives to using Tesla's own expensive (and hard-to-deal-with) SCs. However, for the moment I'm enjoying the car and am not letting the future maintenance issues dull the excitement too much!
 

Cowpring

Member
Aug 14, 2019
378
200
London, UK
Leasing you will be fine, if 3 years the lease ends before the warranty expires (4 years) so wouldn't worry.

My M3 is arriving Thursday on a three year lease. It's my third lease car (previous two were ICE from VW). I always paid extra for the service plan but found them a waste of money - the cars never needed a service in first three years of life, even less so for Teslas.

Lets hope i've not just jinxed myself there.
 

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