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Sharing my car repair experience

Discussion in 'Model S' started by democappy, Feb 25, 2019.

  1. democappy

    democappy Member

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    My Tesla was in an accident on 2/14 and I thought I would just track my experience here for anyone interested. I am about to go into that dreaded timeline of seeing if my car will be prepared in 1 month or 6 months. Definitely one of the biggest issues with owning a Tesla is when it works, it really works. When it goes wrong, it really goes wrong and the support is limited.

    Accident happened on 2/14. Another driver ran a red light and hit the side of my Tesla. First thing to note, when Tesla finds out you have been in an accident, they cut all power even when it is unnecessary. Therefore, you can't even put it into tow mode because without power the car can't do anything. First tow truck driver that the police called eventually gave up trying to tow it. Tesla sent a tow truck driver for me who know how to charge the 12v so I could put it in tow mode. However, he also eventually gave up on being able to figure out how to tow it even with Tesla customer support calling him. I didn't get a tow truck driver willing and able to tow the car until 2/18.

    Tesla gave me a list of body shops. The first one my tow truck driver towed it to informed us that they no longer work on Teslas because it isn't worth the hassle. That leaves me with one repair company (with multiple locations) in all of Charlotte even willing to work on them.

    At the body shop, my Tesla has to get in line behind all of the other ones because they only work the Teslas in a special room since they are aluminum. So far my car has just sat their waiting. They are going to work on it today/tomorrow, but told me that the wait for Tesla to sends parts could be extremely long. They said the time to get parts is all over the place, but don't expect anything to be repaired for at least a month and it may be several months before they even get the parts. They said the Tesla they were working on today got in its accident in May 2018!

    So here I sit, paying my car loan for a car I might not see for months and driving a rental car that is obviously nowhere near the level of my Tesla.
     
    • Informative x 3
  2. SabrToothSqrl

    SabrToothSqrl Active Member

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    Don't forget the diminished value claims :) You have all sorts of fun to look forwards to.
     
    • Funny x 1
  3. Ande

    Ande Member

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    The spare part situation is ridiculously bad.
     
  4. BoerumHill

    BoerumHill not great not terrible

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    Wait...where was the car 2/14-2/18? Sitting on the side of the road?

    YouTuber MKBHD recently documented his P100D repair experience. Took three months, and that was with a Tesla approved shop that had all the parts IN STOCK. Cannot imagine how long you will be waiting. Original estimate was $40K, adjusted to $46K. Thankfully the insurance company of the trucker that hit him paid for it all.

    Wishing you the best, keep us posted.
     
  5. democappy

    democappy Member

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    The accident happened about 20 yards from my house. We got it pushed into my driveway using the second tow truck and then we put blocks behind the wheels so it didn't roll back into the street (because it is was stuck in neutral since the 12v died while it was in tow mode). Eventually we had to just get it out of the street because the police had been waiting for roughly 4 hours by that point. The Honda that hit me had been towed away 3 hours earlier.

    BTW, these cars are HEAVY and really hard to push up any kind of incline. Especially when one of your tires is bent. There was a time when we thought, let's just get a couple guys and push it out of the road. We didn't come close to getting it to move :)
     
  6. drklain

    drklain Member

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    Did you have an airbag deployment or something else to trigger the "cut power to car" command? I can tell you that when my car was hit, that did not happen (note I had no airbag deployment) and I drove my car afterwards (including to body shop for estimate).
     
  7. democappy

    democappy Member

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    All the side airbags went off. They didn't cut the power until after they called me and I said I was in an accident. Had I known they were going to cut the power once it was confirmed in an accident, I would have just ignored their calls since there was no risk to the battery.
     
  8. drklain

    drklain Member

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    Not sure about the extent of your damage, but remember there are other things besides the battery that can cause an isssue. If you recall, the high voltage lines are under the frunk lid on the passenger side of the car and have a cut spot for first responders to cut to isolate them. There are also lines in the C pillar (rear door jam) of the driver side rear door, so even damage up high can impact high voltage lines.

    Last, are you sure Tesla cut power to your car? I don't believe there is a remote way to do this (but am happy to be corrected). Has anyone else heard of such a thing?
     
  9. P100D_Me

    P100D_Me Member

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    I wish I didn't click on these threads, this stuff is really worrying.
     
    • Like x 6
  10. dethman

    dethman Member

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    Concerning stories.
     
    • Like x 1
  11. David29

    David29 Supporting Member

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    I agree. My car has been great and I like to feel positive about it as I enjoy my last year of the full warranty. These scary stories are eroding my confidence in the car. I sometimes feel like I should entirely drop out of all my Tesla-related social media. But habits are hard to break....
     
    • Like x 2
  12. sharpgator

    sharpgator Member

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    Agree totally. Every time I read one of these, I truly consider ditching the Tesla before the inevitable happens.
     
  13. PhilDavid

    PhilDavid Active Member

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    Perhaps Tesla should do with repair parts what just about every single other car manufacturer does with their parts... I've owned several other premium cars in the past and never had any issues getting any needed parts.

    This really should not be a hard problem to solve... I'm hoping with the focus on service this quarter, the parts/repair issue is something they will finally address and resolve for good...
     
  14. democappy

    democappy Member

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    I am fairly confident, but I admit I can only go off what I was told. Tesla customer service is who told me they did it. I talked to them a lot during the process. They called after the airbags deployed. They called after the 12v was charged causing the car to come back online. I called them to help give directions to the first tow truck driver. I called them again to send out the second tow truck driver. I called them again to walk the second tow truck driver through what he needed to do.
     
  15. drklain

    drklain Member

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    Interesting. I don't believe they have the ability to trigger/open a switch that cuts out the high voltage battery. They may have some software control to allow immobilizing/shutting down the car, but the other seems unlikely to me (it's part of the reason the "cut here" sports exist for first responders. That said, I'm certainly not an expert on all of the things software controls on the car or even if there is a software controlled relay or isolation switch like you describe. Perhaps someone else (maybe @verygreen or one of the other salvage experts) may know...
     
  16. verygreen

    verygreen Curious member

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    when airbags deploy, some sort of fuse burns and contractors could no longer be engaged is my understanding. You would not be able to drive the car from that point on.
     
  17. drklain

    drklain Member

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    That makes more sense than a remote-command to disable power to the car...
     
  18. democappy

    democappy Member

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    This definitely matches with what the mechanic has now told me. He said they had to replace a fuse to get the car to turn back on because the airbags went off. Happy to be corrected and make sure this thread has correct info. Don't know why the Tesla customer service told me what they did. Maybe I simply didn't understand what they were telling me or maybe the Tesla phone reps don't fully understand what happens.

    As for an update on the car, I got my initial estimate ($22k) for repairs yesterday. They are getting an initial parts order out to Tesla and will get the car taken a part mid next week to see if there are any other parts needed. Every time I talk to them the just repeatedly reiterate that I should keep my expectations of Tesla part shipping speed very low.
     
  19. FoxSTL2HOU

    FoxSTL2HOU Member

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    As anecdotal evidence, my repair (involving the replacement of the driver steering wheel and shin/knee airbags) took 1 month from accident to parts being ordered and 3 months from ordering to return of the vehicle, where the single hostage part that added 1 month was the airbag control module. I don't know if a single module controls all airbags, or only the steering wheel airbag from my situation.
     
  20. Bet TSLA

    Bet TSLA Active Member

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    Perhaps Elon making service his number one priority will help. For what it's worth, I got both my Model S and Model 3 repaired at the Tesla body shop (owned and run by Tesla) in San Jose, CA. Back in November. The Model S took only a couple of weeks, start to finish, to replace the back bumper and various pieces around it (I was rear-ended). The Model 3 took three weeks to fix extensive front-end damage including the front bumper, the hood, one headlight and fender, etc. (my daughter ran into something).

    Parts availability didn't seem to be the issue, ever. But that doesn't mean that it never is.
     

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