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Wall charger not opening Charging port door on M3 LR

My new Model 3 LR arrived last weekend. I had a Wall charger installed in my garage a while back. The first time I went to charge the car I pressed the button on the Wall charger handle to open the Charging port door and nothing happened. I had to open it by hand. I've been using the app now to open and unlock the charger, that works fine. I had a service call yesterday at my home. The Tesla service man concluded there's something wrong with the Wall charger. They gave me a phone number to call specifically for the charger and said they would repair or replace it. So I called and spoke to someone who had a real attitude and said "if the charger is charging your car then the problem is the car not the charger" and she instructed me to schdelu another service appointment, which I did. She said I need to try another charger somewhere else to see if that makes a difference. What's so frustrating is that Tesla Cars & Tesla Chargers are 2 different divisions of the same company that don't seem to want to work together. I'll bring my car to a service center and try their charger, if the charging door opens then the problem is my Wall charger. Anybody have similar experience dealing with this problem and how it got resolved?
 

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
14,243
18,355
San Diego
My new Model 3 LR arrived last weekend. I had a Wall charger installed in my garage a while back. The first time I went to charge the car I pressed the button on the Wall charger handle to open the Charging port door and nothing happened. I had to open it by hand. I've been using the app now to open and unlock the charger, that works fine. I had a service call yesterday at my home. The Tesla service man concluded there's something wrong with the Wall charger. They gave me a phone number to call specifically for the charger and said they would repair or replace it. So I called and spoke to someone who had a real attitude and said "if the charger is charging your car then the problem is the car not the charger" and she instructed me to schdelu another service appointment, which I did. She said I need to try another charger somewhere else to see if that makes a difference. What's so frustrating is that Tesla Cars & Tesla Chargers are 2 different divisions of the same company that don't seem to want to work together. I'll bring my car to a service center and try their charger, if the charging door opens then the problem is my Wall charger. Anybody have similar experience dealing with this problem and how it got resolved?
If the car is asleep, it is normal for the Wall Connector charge handle button to not work to open the charge door. Perhaps this is addressed on newer cars, but at least on my vehicle, it does not work when the car is asleep (unless it is plugged into the car, in which case the button will wake the car up and release the handle, but that can obviously use wired communication, and it is a different function).

If you open a car door, close it, wait for the clunk of the contactors, and then try again to use the Wall Connector button, and it still does not work, that is a problem. That should work.

If that doesn’t work, I would suspect a problem with the charge handle, but I guess it could be either. Obviously could go to a Supercharger or other charger and see if that opens the door. If that doesn’t work then it is the car.
 
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If the car is asleep, it is normal for the Wall Connector charge handle button to not work to open the charge door. Perhaps this is addressed on newer cars, but at least on my vehicle, it does not work when the car is asleep (unless it is plugged into the car, in which case the button will wake the car up and release the handle, but that can obviously use wired communication, and it is a different function).

If you open a car door, close it, wait for the clunk of the contactors, and then try again to use the Wall Connector button, and it still does not work, that is a problem. That should work.

If that doesn’t work, I would suspect a problem with the charge handle, but I guess it could be either. Obviously could go to a Supercharger or other charger and see if that opens the door. If that doesn’t work then it is the car.
Thanks for your post and suggestion. I'm happy to report it worked! I opened the car door so the car was "awake" and on. I put the Wall charger handle in front of the charging port, pressed the button and the flap opened. First time it ever worked. Hope it continues to work. Thanks again for your post
 
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AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
14,243
18,355
San Diego
Thanks for your post and suggestion. I'm happy to report it worked! I opened the car door so the car was "awake" and on. I put the Wall charger handle in front of the charging port, pressed the button and the flap opened. First time it ever worked. Hope it continues to work. Thanks again for your post
Great! That’s normal behavior, as far as I know.

It’s annoying but that is how it works. The door does not have to be open, the car just has to be awake (idle).

Not an issue if you always plug in your car when you park.

It used to be that pushing the button did not release the charge handle if the car was asleep, which was very annoying, but fortunately that has been fixed.
 
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I have had pretty good luck, with holding the button down on the charger handle until the car awakes and opens the charge port door. Before I just kept clicking the button a bunch of times, with pretty random success, holding the button down until the door opens seems to work better.
 
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AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
14,243
18,355
San Diego
I have had pretty good luck, with holding the button down on the charger handle until the car awakes and opens the charge port door. Before I just kept clicking the button a bunch of times, with pretty random success, holding the button down until the door opens seems to work better.
This does not work, at least with my car. I’ve tried it for a very long time.

Sometimes the car wakes up with you in the vicinity, which might make it seem like it works.
 
And here I was feeling all good about it......:confused:
So far the only success I’ve had with the Wall charger nozzle has been after opening the driver door and fully waking the car up. I pressed the Nozzle button and the door opened. On other occasions holding the nozzle button down for extended time made no difference. When it works it’s immediate. One good thing I learned is that by holding down the trunk on my key Fob that successfully opens Charger door as well. I like that better than fumbling with my cell phone.
 
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AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
14,243
18,355
San Diego
Double checked this morning. Car was plugged in, sleeping. Pressed button to release. Cable released and I removed the charge handle. Charge port then closed. But no contactors yet. Pressed the button. Nothing.

Contactors then clunked closed. Pressed the button, opened immediately.

Contactors are the key.
 
Double checked this morning. Car was plugged in, sleeping. Pressed button to release. Cable released and I removed the charge handle. Charge port then closed. But no contactors yet. Pressed the button. Nothing.

Contactors then clunked closed. Pressed the button, opened immediately.

Contactors are the key.
What are contactors? When you pressed button to release was that the button on the charger nozzle? What color does the light change to to let you know it’s been released?
 

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
14,243
18,355
San Diego
What are contactors? When you pressed button to release was that the button on the charger nozzle? What color does the light change to to let you know it’s been released?
The contactors connect the HV battery to the car’s HV system. They are very audible when they engage (this is what causes the clunking from the car). Just a massive switch (I think there are two).

They are open in sleep, and closed when the car is idle/parked (and of course driving). They make a different sound depending on whether they are opening or closing.

Yes, the button on the charge handle. I wasn’t looking at any lights so can’t comment on that.
 
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I *think* my model 3 goes from dark blue to light blue when it unlocks the charge port. You can clearly hear the charge port lock activate anyway, the light isn't necessary, at least in my case.

To wake the car, I think you don't have to open a door, just slightly pushing on the door handle fat part a bit is enough. Play around and listen for the contactor.
 

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