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Should I buy pre-paid service/extended service? Or annual service every 2 years?

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Hometheatremaven, Apr 29, 2013.

  1. Hometheatremaven

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    I assume most people on this forum have purchased a pre-paid service plan. Some because they had to, before Elon's recent announcement that made it optional. Most because after spending $100K on the car, what's another $1900 or $3800 or $6300.

    I am not like most S buyers. I don't like to pay for things I don't think are a good investment (except for this car, which I view as a work of art). I bought no tech package, no air suspension, no premium sound, no performance, no fancy wheels.

    I will drive maybe 5K a year.

    I realize this is a new somewhat untested car in the real world. Things will go wrong. But that's what the original 4 year warranty is for, right? Should I pay $1900 for 4 year's worth of changing my wipers or rotating my tires?

    Elon did mention preforming hardware upgrades in the annual service. I wonder if I have the "annual service" when I hit 12K miles (which will be in about 2 years), if I'd get all the new hardware upgrades to date? I guess I can choose to do the "annual inspection" whenever I want (ie. every 2 years)?

    I have 3 weeks left to decide. Yours thoughts are appreciated.
     
  2. Miuaiga

    Miuaiga Member

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    I don't like paying for things I consider bad investments, but my perspective was the way to make this car the most valuable for the longest time was to add those features that nearly anyone spending this amount of money wants in a luxury car, so I purchased nearly all of the add-ons. Did not purchase the shelf, wall charger, twin chargers.

    I abhor service plans, so I would normally ignore these. Until Musk's announcement, here was the lay of the land. I HAD to have an annual service by TSLA or I voided my warranty. Remember, I had no choice if I wanted to maintain the warranty. I also live 3 hours from the closest service center. Ranger visits were $100 a pop. If I took it to the service center, I would have spent the night in a hotel, purchased food out and easily have spent more than $100. Thus, I took the 4-year service plan with unlimited Ranger visits at $2,400. 4 x $600 = $2,400 plus four ranger visits for $400 = $2,800 without the plan. Or, $2,400 if I spent the equivalent of 24 hours (6 hours round trip over four years) in the car over four years driving the vehicle to Rockville for service. Add the hotel, food, etc. and the plan made all the financial sense in the world.

    With the Musk announcement, I'm going back to TSLA this week to see what my options are. While not having TSLA service the car won't void the warranty, I don't know where I would take it to have it serviced, given the unique technology. That will likely change quickly, but for now, I'll rely on TSLA. Hope that helps.
     
  3. eelton

    eelton Member

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    I also drive relatively few miles--I expect maybe 6k per year on the Tesla.

    I had purchased the service plan prior to the announcement, but after talking to Tesla, I'm canceling it. I plan to service the car appropriately, at 12.5k intervals. I don't see doing annual services on a low mileage car, particularly when they haven't detailed what it is they do that's worth the time and money... Just alignment, tire rotation, and inspection.


    sent via Tapatalk
     
  4. Hometheatremaven

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    I grew up in Frederick. Now I live in La Jolla, about 10 minutes from the San Diego Service Center. Your reasoning for possibly keeping the service plan makes sense. For me, not so much unless Elon keeps throwing out freebies that are only "free" with the pre-paid service contracts.
     
  5. GaryD

    GaryD Member

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    What about the software updates? I think we need the service plans for them beyond V4.xx.
     
  6. joshuaeven

    joshuaeven Member

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    This is the big question... Exactly what do you get for the service plan, other than the savings (2400 vs 1900)?
     
  7. Hometheatremaven

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    I'm pretty sure software updates will be sent to us regardless of pre-paid service contracts.
     
  8. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    Whatever you do, at least make sure you get the brake fluid flushed every two years. Brake fluid is hygroscopic - it absorbs moisture from the air. Too much water and it will boil quicker, potentially leaving you no stopping power.

    For low mileage drivers, a maintenance service every 12.5k miles or 2 years, whichever comes first, is reasonable. No need to buy a maintenance plan for that. Just pay the $600 out of pocket once every other year.
     
  9. Miuaiga

    Miuaiga Member

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    I spoke with TSLA today. I had hoped to get details about this grand announcement. Even they don't have any, and advised me not to cancel my prepaid yet, until even they have a legal definition of what this new announcement means. The guy I spoke with doesn't know, and admitted as much. It is still unclear, to everyone it seems, as to what is required annually, but something is required every 12,000 miles or 12 months, whichever comes first, so that the warranty is not voided, no matter who does the work, so you can't wait and do "it" every two years. For those who have prepaid, it appears that the best course is to hold tight until you have a legal piece of paper in your hands. That can't hurt. If later it makes sense to drop out of the prepaid, I'd guess, and that is what it is, TSLA accommodates that decision in a professional manner. As you can tell, there is not much that is known yet and even less (meaning nothing) that is legally binding on TSLA. So I'm just waiting a bit. Don't think that will hurt.
     
  10. Hometheatremaven

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    That's the way it used to be before Elon's announcement. Not sure about that now.
     
  11. markb1

    markb1 Active Member

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    They were quite clear in their annoucement that skipping service would not void the warranty.
     
  12. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    Seeing the actual agreement (and changes to the warranty) is probably better. PR statements are not 100% reliable.

    Although I agree with the others that if it turns out there is no effect on the warranty, for people who drive low mileages, not getting the agreement probably makes sense esp. if you are near a service center. If you are not near one, then you have to calculate the Ranger charges to see which one makes sense for you.
     
  13. Miuaiga

    Miuaiga Member

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    As this discussion reveals, there is much speculation about what the public announcement said or didn't. I think, importantly to TSLA owners, the Ownership Experience staff at TSLA doesn't know any more than we do. The gentleman with whom I spoke said that to me directly. He did, however, read to me the existing warranty which says that an annual inspection must be done every 12 months or every 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. The announcement says, I believe, that owners are not required to have TSLA do the inspection. It does not say that owners do not have to have an inspection at all annually.

    Elon's excitement about the car and his willingness to modify features on the fly is a refreshing stark departure from typical car manufacturers, but at the end of the day, these sorts of future liabilities for the company have to go to Legal. That is where the matter is now. Until the attorneys work this out, I'm going to just wait. I've got nothing to lose at this point in being a little patient.
     
  14. bellwilliam

    bellwilliam Member

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    what's is this mysterious "service" everybody is talking about here ?
    what is this special "inspection" ? do they run it through some kind of x-ray machine ?
    what are you getting in your service contract that's so special ?

    only thing I see is may be brake fluid change every couple of years, which is extremely simple and cost less than $200 at a race shop using top of line fluid.
    wiper fluid and wiper blade is another. you can go to Autozone, and they will will do that for you if you don't know how.
    last time I checked, most local shops can do tire rotation and alignment if you like (not much alignment adjustment available anyway)
     
  15. joshuaeven

    joshuaeven Member

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    My assumption (and you know how the saying goes) is that there MUST be something to the service agreement. I'm going to bite. I've put way more money and faith into TMC than what's required for this prepaid plan.
     
  16. AlMc

    AlMc 'Senior Moments' member

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    #16 AlMc, May 2, 2013
    Last edited: May 2, 2013
    I have had a an email exchange with ownership experience about this as well. Initially, that exchange seem to indicate that new 'hardware' coming in the future model 'S' base models would be included/retrofitted into existing cars during the annual service inspection. That would make the decision to buy the plan a 'no brainer' for me. However, when given the example of say a 'blind spot' device being installed on upcoming models as part of say the 'tech package' and since I purchased the 'tech package' would my car be retrofitted with this hardware during annual inspection/service via the service contract the answer was 'not sure'.
     
  17. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    @AlMc - For similar reasons this is likely why they added "Performance Plus" rather than upgrading the Performance package itself.
     
  18. Hometheatremaven

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    I have 10 days now to decide whether to get the pre-paid 4 year (or 4 + 4) service plan.

    What am I missing out on if I simply pay $600 every other year, since I drive 6k/yr or less?
     
  19. gaswalla

    gaswalla P4201/85/airsusp/pano/19i

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    $500 over 4 years
     
  20. ImperishableNite

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    When I did the test-drive the last Saturday in the Natick, MA showroom, the guy told me the service also included replacing individual dead cells in the giant battery.
     

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