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Snow and Ice effect on sensors

I had a situation yesterday. My Model Y front and rear bumpers were covered with ice and snow causing the vehicle to think that it was blocked by some objects and refused to allow me to move the vehicle. After trying to debug for a while, I came to this realization and cleaned off the snow and ice, and this resolved the situation and allowed me to move the vehicle. Does anyone encounter the same situation? Thanks.
 

hcdavis3

HCD3
Supporting Member
Mar 3, 2019
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I had a situation yesterday. My Model Y front and rear bumpers were covered with ice and snow causing the vehicle to think that it was blocked by some objects and refused to allow me to move the vehicle. After trying to debug for a while, I came to this realization and cleaned off the snow and ice, and this resolved the situation and allowed me to move the vehicle. Does anyone encounter the same situation? Thanks.
Seems normal to me.
 

jcanoe

Well-Known Member
Oct 2, 2020
6,031
6,714
Maryland
Preconditioning will defrost the Autopilot cameras, radar array, parking sensors and de-ice the charging port. Depending on temperature and weather you may need to precondition for at least 30 minutes. Use a snow brush to clear snow and ice off the front hood, roof and rear glass. You will also need to clear snow and ice from the headlights and tail lights as the LEDs do not generate enough heat to melt snow and ice.
 
No, and no

Actually, yes and no. Last week while driving on the highway in snow, I had a slush buildup on the front bumper which eventually caused the radar to declare itself inoperative, and as a consequence autopilot became unavailable. At the same time, snow accumulated on the rear bumper and blocked the parking sensors so I got a constant "Stop" warning when I backed up. Neither had a direct impact on the operation of the vehicle but autopilot stayed off until I cleaned the bumper manually.
 
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Mike_TV

Active Member
Apr 29, 2020
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Chicagoland
Actually, yes and no. Last week while driving on the highway in snow, I had a slush buildup on the front bumper which eventually caused the radar to declare itself inoperative, and as a consequence autopilot became unavailable. At the same time, snow accumulated on the rear bumper and blocked the parking sensors so I got a constant "Stop" warning when I backed up. Neither had a direct impact on the operation of the vehicle but autopilot stayed off until I cleaned the bumper manually.

This happened to me recently on a short drive. Blowing, wet snow caused a slight build up on snow on the front bumper and prevented AP from activating. Radar wasn't working properly. The whole bumper should be heated! :D
 
This happened to me recently on a short drive. Blowing, wet snow caused a slight build up on snow on the front bumper and prevented AP from activating. Radar wasn't working properly. The whole bumper should be heated! :D
Yes, but in those conditions you shouldn't be using autopilot anyway so it's probably not worth the cost and energy consumption. Still, it makes one wonder how FSD can be practical for all weather conditions.....
 
2020MY at MHM 12 17.jpg

I have been driving my MY regularly in severe snow conditions to and from Mount Hood Meadows (with a 162" base at the lodge). Have not had any driving problems but get various warnings of blocked sensors (some of these are even on sunny snow free days). The backup camera has gotten covered many times and it still will allow me to back up (looking at the mirrors and side cameras). I have also noticed that sometimes the parking/proximity sensors get un accurate when covered. This has some jeopardy in that it indicates it is safe to proceed when something is really getting too close.
I have only tried autopilot in the snow a few times and most of the time it will not engage or turn off shortly after engagement.
The pre heating/defrost works great. I turn on the defrost with my phone at the top of my last ski run and by the time I get to the car it is warm and the windshield is wet or at least easy to clear without having to scrape any ice. Many times it has been much more covered with snow and ice than the picture above shows.
 

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