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Universal Charger Cable Getting Chewed Up By Animals!

Discussion in 'Model S: Battery & Charging' started by notailpipe2112, May 6, 2013.

  1. notailpipe2112

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    universalcharger-nibbles.jpg

    I thought I'd seen everything, but this weekend my cable got chewed up by an animal of some sort. I have a rural property that I go to on the weekends, and I plug in all night to a trickle charge. When I was packing up my cable yesterday, look what I found. The picture shows some of the worst part of the cable where it went right through to hitting the white insides, but it is literally the whole cable that has these bites now. Seems kind of dangerous, and I'm pretty surprise that an animal would do something like this to a black rubber cable. It feels like the same kind of rubber as car tires, but I've never heard on an animal eating car tires!

    Any suggestions on what this could be, or what I should do in the future (other than maybe keeping the cable off the ground)? Our place is in Prince Edward County, so it's not like we are talking about the northern wilderness. This could literally have just been bunnies doing this.
     
  2. huntjo

    huntjo Member

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    So weird...
    I bet there is a topical deterrent you can get from a pet store along the lines of "bitter apple" spray.
     
  3. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    Wow! Thanks for the heads-up. I plan on driving to a friend's summer home at the lake for weekends in the summer and had planned on plugging in there. I wonder if there is something in the rubber that animals like (kind of like how automotive anti-freeze is tasty (although deadly) to them)?
     
  4. notailpipe2112

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    I have been pondering if I would need to use some kind of spray (ie. bitter apple) on it. The not ideal part of that is that I then I have to roll it up, put it back in the bag, and put it in my car. It could smell everything up. I'm definitely interested to see if anyone else comes across this issue out in the wild because it might be important for Tesla to know so they can change the rubber in future versions of the cable.
     
  5. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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    The cord gets warmer, so perhaps it was thought of as a tasty live animal.
     
  6. shokunin

    shokunin P85 & S40

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    I had that happen to my knock sensor cable in my Honda Odyssey. A rat chewed through and ate the whole cable. The check engine light went on, took it into our mechanic and he said that a rat ate through our cable and it's $600 to fix. I said BS and went online and sure enough, a common problem with Honda's cable as they used some sort of soy-based dielectric and cable sheath. When the current runs through the cable, it's apparently even more tasty.

    The honda dealer actually sold me an "anti-rat" knock sensor cable, had a sign of a rat with an x through it all over the cable. Fixed it myself for less than $50. Of course the cable was burried underneath the manifold so it took a few hours to take apart the intake manifold and get access to the cable to replace it.

    I wonder if you could sheath the UMC cable in some sort of Techflex.
     
  7. montgom626

    montgom626 Active Member

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    Animals can eat any and all wiring in cars.
     
  8. Cosmacelf

    Cosmacelf Active Member

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    In the meantime, wrap the affected areas with black electrical tape. Actually, I wonder if the sticky black electrical tape would be a deterrent.
     
  9. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    That's what I was thinking, but you do have to consider the thermal properties of the cable (i.e. you don't want it to overheat).
     
  10. Plug Me In

    Plug Me In Member

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    You could try scattering some cayenne pepper or chili powder in the vicinity of the cable to avoid spraying any stuff on it.
     
  11. jeffro01

    jeffro01 Active Member

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    Cable companies have huge issues with squirrels in the summer time eating away at the fiber optic and copper based above ground lines. Judging by the picture I'd think maybe a rabbit or a squirrel.

    Jeff
     
  12. Daniel Scherer

    Daniel Scherer Junior Member

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    Can you hang or suspend the cord so it's up off the ground out of reach? Wonder if that same critter is chewing elsewhere on your car you can't see.
     
  13. mcornwell

    mcornwell Active Member

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    #13 mcornwell, May 7, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 13, 2016
    Unless it's one of these squirrels...
     
  14. RDoc

    RDoc S85D

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    I've heard of porcupines chewing on tires, but my understanding is that they are actually after salt. Could there be either road salt or salt from sweat on the cable?
     
  15. DriverOne

    DriverOne Member

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    Some hot sauce stopped our cat chewing through my speaker cables.
     
  16. Zextraterrestrial

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    ...unless you want me and my wife chewing on your UMC
    yumm
     
  17. notailpipe2112

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    Thanks for all the tips everyone. My strategy will be to keep the cable off the ground generally, and maybe rub some chili on it. It had occurred to me that salt is a possible issue, if in fact had some on my hands from the post-road-trip-snack-attack session. You never know, as I am a salt and vinegar chip kinda guy (and what better way to pass the time in such a smooth highway ride).

    Generally I was just surprised how many bites there were, and how quickly it must have happened. I'm interested to see if anyone else comes across this issue over the summer as they park their cars in remote places for cottages, camping, etc.

    Mcornwell...that video is awesome, I'll be showing it to my kids tonight.
     
  18. brooklynrab

    brooklynrab Member

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    I just had my wire eaten up last night -- right through the black outer layer while it was lying on the ground. Video shows rabbits in the vicinity. It's hot sauce for me, and if that doesn't work, it's the kids' air rifle!
     
  19. mgdurand

    mgdurand Member

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    Lol, I use habanero, water and egg white, garlic, food processor, strained in a cloth. Then sprayed on anything I want to have a NO message for animals. The egg white makes it stick, the garlic makes a scent association.. I use it on my seedlings. Don't handle the cable and then your self.
     
  20. ilovemycoffee

    ilovemycoffee Member

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    By all means, wash your hands before you pee!
     

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