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Tesla Service Experience Takes a Strange Turn

Discussion in 'Model X' started by NewTMSMan, Oct 12, 2017 at 4:48 PM.

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  1. NewTMSMan

    NewTMSMan Member

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    The story with my Model X all started when my wife and I tried to take it to dinner on Saturday night, about 2 weeks after we took delivery of our Blue with white interior / 6 seater with console 100D. When we went to the X to go, I tried to put it in gear and an alert came up for Parking Brake Needs Service and IU could not get it out of Park. We took my Model S to dinner and the next morning I called Tesla Roadside Assistance.

    Road Side Assistance was very nice and offered to get me a vehicle to use, but I did not need one, and they told me it might be Monday before I heard back once the local Service Centers were open then and Engineering would be back in the office. This was fine for me, but I expected some urgency now.

    After notifying Tesla early Sunday morning I did not hear from anyone Monday, so I called again at 10 am EST, and was transferred to the local service center in Springfield, NJ. They stated at that time that they had a car with the same issue at the center and were working with engineering to try to remedy the situation. They told me they would call me back in an hour. I waited for an update and did not receive one, so I called again at 12 pm and was told engineering thinks it is a firmware issue, and they should have an update in an hour that should remedy the situation and they will call me back. 3 ½ hours later I still did not hear from anyone, so I called again for the third time and was then told they managed to get the car they have in drive by disconnecting and reconnecting the 12V battery but do not have a firmware update that will fix it. They are now sending a technician to my house to disconnect and reconnect the 12V battery on my Model X to see if they then can drive it back to the service center, but they have no idea what is causing the issue and no remedy really in mind at this point.

    While the experience was not stellar so far, I was happy to have them at least picking the car up to repair it. The Technician arrived at my house at about 6 PM and he brought me a loaner Model S. He disconnected the 12V battery on my Model X, I filled out some paperwork for the loaner and he left with my Model X.

    This is where things got strange, and about 8:15 PM I decided to check where my car was in the App and found it traveling south at over 80 MPH on the Garden State Parkway over 70 miles from the Service, it turned around and headed North and exceeded 90 MPH and stopped. At this I called Tesla Roadside Assistance and notified them about what was happening and they told me they would try to reach the service manager, and I told them I was leaving to recover my Model X and calling the police to report it stolen if I did not hear form them in 15 minutes.

    10 minutes later the Service Manager called me and told me they had contacted the technician who had my car and he was bringing it back to the service center. After a heated discussion (me yelling) I agreed to meet him at the Service Center to recover my car.

    I met the Service Manager at the Service Center and he could not have tried more to make the situation better, but at this point there was nothing he could say that would have improved this. My car arrived 20 minutes later and I did a cursory inspection to ensure no major damage and left it with Tesla as I was not sure yet whether this was considered a theft and recovery, or just an employee with bad judgement. One thing I also noticed during my inspection of the car was that my dashcam was uninstalled, but the Service Center Manager assured me they always do that which I found odd.

    When I got home I checked Teslafli to see what actually happened with my car.

    In the first leg of the journey, for some reason the car was driven about 4 miles from my house and parked for about 3 minutes along the road (probably to remove my dashcam – see below comment about vehicle inspection):

    [​IMG]

    It was then driven to a QuickChek in Bayville, NJ, almost 80 miles from my home (and about 70+ miles from the Springfield Service Center) at speeds up to 93 MPH. I do not eat or drink in any of our cars and to be honest avoid even parking at places like QuickChek as I do not want my car damaged by other inconsiderate drivers:

    [​IMG]

    The car was then driven and parked along the road in Bayville NJ, where I can only guess the Tesla employee lives. The car stays there only 3 minutes because at this point I am already on the phone with the Service Manager at Springfield NJ Center and he has already contacted the person with my car as I was just leaving to retrieve the car myself, when I saw it stop, and was planning to call the police at that point:

    [​IMG]

    At this point I enacted Valet Mode on the car to ensure that it would not be driven at high speeds again. Here is the final drive back to the Service Center, where it arrived at 9:46 PM and the Service Manager and I were both there at this point.

    [​IMG]

    I did a cursory inspection of the car and could not see any obvious damage or issues, but it was dark and even in the service bay it was tough to see everything. I left the car with the Service Manager and took a loaner with me back home. As another aside, I had a dash cam installed on the car and it was uninstalled when I inspected the car. My guess is that when the Tesla employee stopped for 3 minutes along the side of the road it was to uninstall the dash cam, so I would not have the video of where the car went.

    I went back to the Service Center the next day to discuss the situation and the options. My Model X was still not repaired at this point and there was now the additional issue of an employee joyriding with my car. The Service Manager did everything he could to try and make the situation better and we agreed that a complete inspection by them including a detailed safety inspection and detailing. The Service Manager was clear that he would do everything he could do to restore my faith in Tesla and in the Springfield Service Center.

    While I was there the Service Manager brought in a senior Technician that was visiting for training and he explained what they believed was causing my original issue and my X needed a FWD sensor replacement and then a FW update and then it should be fixed. In addition I met the Technician who would be inspecting my car and repairing any additional issues and he outlined the safety inspection they were planning to do. I was starting to feel a little better and more confident that I would get my new Model X back in good condition.

    While inspecting the car they found a small ding in the C pillar of the Model X and repaired it using paintless dent removal. Cannot be sure where that came from honestly, may even have been there at delivery as I would not have easily seen it, but they owned up to it and had it repaired.

    It took 2 days to complete everything, including the detail of the car and I picked it up this evening. After inspecting it completely (as best that I could) and taking a test drive I agreed to take back possession of the car. The guys at Tesla Springfield did the best they could with a very bad situation and tried to make it right and I appreciate that.
     
    • Informative x 12
    • Helpful x 2
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  2. BrettS

    BrettS Member

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    I can’t speak to most of your crazy situation, but I can comment that it is normal for them to disconnect the dashcam during service. The Orlando service center has disconnected mine the two times I’ve had it in for service. I suspect they do it because they have propriatary information back in the service center such as access codes and other things that they probably don’t want recorded.
     
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  3. jeffro01

    jeffro01 Active Member

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    Whoever abused your car should be fired. So should the service manager if you ask me...

    @JonMc If you could read this that would be great. Customers shouldn't have to worry, or even think, about service centers abusing their cars...

    Jeff
     
  4. gjunky

    gjunky Waiting for the Model ☰

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    Crazy store indeed. Do you know what happened to the Technician that drove your car?
    Good call on the Valet mode.
    Dual X family. Well done :)
     
  5. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    Wow! I am surprised a technician took your X for a joy ride...I would assume they already have tons of Tesla loaners to drive already. Not sure why the tech decided to have fun with yours.

    I don't appreciate the policy of disconnecting dashcams...no other dealership does this except for Tesla in my experience.

    Might need to get a tamper proof enclosure for our dashcams: BlackVue DR650/DR550 Tamperproof Case for Front Camera
     
    • Helpful x 1
  6. dhanson865

    dhanson865 Active Member

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    I wonder if it's OK for general service issues to leave the car in Valet mode, would it even matter since they have diagnostic codes? Maybe the joyrider didn't know them but I can guarantee you someone in service can get it out of Valet mode if they try.
     
  7. NewTMSMan

    NewTMSMan Member

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    Technician no longer works for Tesla.

    Regarding Dashcam, I was later told it is disconnected to protect privacy of other owners and license plates and to protect employee privacy. Doesn't make total sense to me, but that is how it was explained.

    Also it seems Service Center cannot bypass Valet Mode but California can as they did it on my car to allow firmware updates when they couldn't reach me to turn it off.
     
    • Like x 5
    • Informative x 3
  8. Xtek

    Xtek Member

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    I would have absolutely lost it... not in a yelling fashion because chances are the person I'd want to yell at wouldn't be on receiving end. I'd certainly leave that SC a Yelp/Google review as well as consider an escalation to senior management. Unacceptable.
     
  9. ckwong

    ckwong Member

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    Wow, that's one crazy night. I don't know what I would've done but I'm glad everything worked out at the end. I'm glad that technician no longer works for Tesla. I go to the SC in Paramus and they always disconnect my dashcam and also has disable mobile access a couple of times. I also check my odometer to see how many miles I have before bringing it to a SC, just in case.
     
    • Informative x 2
  10. Barklikeadog

    Barklikeadog Member

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    a technician like that shouldn't be fired, he should be reassigned. His daily job should be to take a few of the dusty cars waiting for service out on the highway to blow them clean.
     
    • Funny x 2
  11. Muhammad

    Muhammad Member

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    Does anyone know how to bypass Teslas ability to turn off remote tracking? When I drop my car off at Fremont they disable the feature so I have no idea what they could possibly be doing with my car. A situation such as the above really concerns me.

    I'm also wondering what one would do if a thief with basic Tesla knowledge turns off remote tracking from the settings menu. Is Tesla at the very least able to still track the car even if I can't?
     
  12. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    Like disposing the oil or the gruesome stuff..
     
  13. NeverFollow

    NeverFollow Member

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    #13 NeverFollow, Oct 13, 2017 at 12:10 AM
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2017 at 12:28 AM
    It was great that you were using Teslafi or any other GPS recording.

    However, first I would have made a police report before contacting Tesla,
    since you noticed that your car was parked in an unexpected location
    70 miles away from the service center.

    Who know, may be the driver could have been victim of a hijacker.
    And to have a police officer sent to inspect the car for any visible damage,
    and to visit the near by house .

    Also you have a proof that the car was at this location in case you would have
    to make a report for any damage.

    So, beside using Teslafi, should we start using hidden DVR Recorder,
    to protect from legitimate Tesla employee, or other valet employees,
    to abuse your car while it's given for service?

    See the following installation:

    The 1st 8 Cameras Dash Cam (DVR) installed on a Tesla

    [​IMG]
     
  14. ahtlys

    ahtlys Member

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    How is the Paramus SC? Since I'm in NY we took delivery at Mt Kisco. Anyway, The X has developed a need to see a tech and Paramus is much closer.
     
  15. Peteybabes

    Peteybabes redneck drivin' a tesla...

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  16. CmdrThor

    CmdrThor Active Member

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    Before you start using hidden surveillance cameras you should probably review the applicable laws in your state. Secret audio recording is almost certainly going to be illegal if at least one party of the recording is not aware.
     
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  17. boelkers

    boelkers Member

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    This story is insane. I've always wondered when dropping my car off at some repair places what happens to it when the say they test drove it. I feel most places are honest but then again maybe that is just misplaced trust. Now that we have access to see where our cars are at all the time I wonder how many other shops out there we will catch in the act of joyriding.
     
  18. boelkers

    boelkers Member

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    Also, I've not used services like Teslafi for the fact of not wanting extra vampire drain. This incident is making me reconsider so I have a better record when/if my dashcam was unplugged.
     
  19. speedy

    speedy Member

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    Teslafi does a decent job with the sleep mode (when configured properly) and allows the car to sleep normally. You can also set a fixed time for sleep mode (say midnight to 6am) where it won't poll data at all. So I have not seen any extra vampire drain. Unfortunately, since the standard procedure at Service Centers is to immediately disable remote access, it doesn't help at all in tracking your vehicle while in service. In this particular situation, the rogue employee wasn't familiar enough to disable Mobile Access, and hence was caught red handed.
     
  20. Shateam

    Shateam Member

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    Wow, that is disturbing on a personal level. I had a screw in my tire (tire wasn't losing air) about 2 months ago and a technician from the Springfield SC came to my place of work to pick-up my car, replaced the tire at the SC and returned the car to me.

    Didn't even occur to me to note the mileage or open the app to track my car.

    Hope I won't ever be in a situation like that again but definitely good to know for the future.

    Thanks for posting and raising awareness.
     
    • Informative x 1

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