90,000 Miles On My Tesla Mannequin 3 — Upkeep Prices Increased Than Anticipated

I’m an enormous EV and Tesla fanboy. I do know that in principal EVs are a lot much less complicated than vehicles with inner combustion engines. An inner combustion engine (ICE) alternative value is ~$7000. It’s far more complicated than an electrical motor. As well as, ICE vehicles have very complicated transmissions (alternative value ~$5000). You even have exhaust and emission management methods, which EVs don’t have, radiator/cooling methods, and so forth., and so forth., and so forth. An EV has a really costly battery, however I’m treating mine with child gloves and hope it would final over 10 years. My Mannequin 3 Lengthy Vary was warrantied fully for 50,000 miles. The drive system and battery guarantee will run out at 130,000 miles. The quite a few comparisons I’ve seen estimate upkeep prices for EVs to be a lot decrease than for ICE autos. Nonetheless, the heavy EV battery causes tires to wear down extra rapidly than for an ICE car, so that’s an elevated value for EV upkeep.

Mary, Zuni, my e-bike, and our Tesla Mannequin 3 with a motorbike rack in Zion Nationwide Park, Utah. January 10, 2022. Picture by Fritz Hasler.

Itemized Restore & Upkeep Prices for Our Tesla Mannequin 3 Lengthy Vary

In simply over 90,000 miles, the whole value of the tires and out-of-warranty repairs for my Mannequin 3 have been $5,441.42. See itemized prices under. That is far more than I anticipated. I’ve had the upkeep points detailed within the following paragraphs. Conveniently, I used to be capable of receive the dates, mileage, and actual value of my Tesla repairs from the Tesla app on my telephone. Not conveniently, it seems to return solely 2 years.

1) I’ve wanted to switch the tires 3 times (the third set ought to take me to 120,000 miles) for $578.93 + $565.44 + $1,252.23 = $2,395.60 Notice: The primary two units of tires had been bought in a hole-in-the-wall tire retailer within the Wisconsin Northwoods close to Rhinelander. The third set was bought at a Les Schwab tire retailer in Orem, Utah, the place I arrived with a very flat proper rear tire. I had no alternative to buy tires and didn’t notice how far more I had paid for that 3rd set.

2) There was constant squeaking and Tesla carried out the next: “Reseal Left Entrance Higher Management Arm Ball Joint.” This occurred when the mileage was below 50,000, so it was lined below the guarantee. (Notice: I don’t have the precise date and mileage as a result of this is without doubt one of the older repairs that are not given below service historical past within the Tesla app on my cellphone.)

3) ~April 2020 and April 2021: 4-wheel alignment twice = ~$280

4) ~October 2021/~53,000 miles: take away and substitute rear aero defend = ~$427.13

5) November 3, 2021/54,131 miles: “Reseal Proper Entrance Higher Management Arm Ball Joint” (for squeaking once more) = $49

6) November 3, 2021/54,131 miles: 4-wheel alignment = $90.75

7) July 22, 2022/73,149 miles: Take away and substitute Superbottle (battery and drive system cooling valve) as a result of automobile wouldn’t go over 50 mph = $672.75. Notice: this has been changed by the Octovalve on newer Mannequin 3s.

8) February 2, 2023/88,705 miles: Take away and substitute entrance aero defend (below automobile fiber apron) = $427.13.

9) February 20, 2023/90,029 miles: Take away and substitute PTC/cabin heater (automobile wouldn’t go into drive) = $1,148.00 (Notice: I perceive that more moderen Mannequin 3s now have a warmth pump as a substitute of resistance heating. The PTC is now remoted from the drive system, so if the warmth pump fails, it shouldn’t trigger the drive system to freeze up.)

The nice: Though I reside solely 4 miles from the Nice Grove, Utah, Tesla showroom and repair heart, a distant service technician was despatched to my home to make the restore.

The unhealthy: Sadly, the “bushing bracket — stabilizer bar” with the threaded holes was broken, so the brand new aero shied couldn’t be put in. I needed to go to the Nice Grove Tesla service heart to have the “bushing bracket — stabilizer bar” eliminated and changed so the restore could possibly be accomplished. Additionally, once I first had squeaking from the left entrance suspension, Tesla despatched a cellular repairman to my residence in Saint George, Utah. He was capable of diagnose the issue however not repair it. I had it fastened later on the Tesla service heart in downtown Salt Lake Metropolis below the guarantee.

When the Superbottle failed, the automobile gave me warnings and I used to be unable to drive at greater than 50 mph. When the PTC (cabin heater) failed, the automobile gave me the warning that when I turned off my automobile, it won’t be capable of begin once more. I drove on to my neighborhood Tesla service heart and put the automobile in park. After I tried to place the automobile in drive to enter the service storage, it refused. The Tesla service technician had to make use of his helpful automobile lifting machine to tug the automobile into the service bay.

Basically, I had two costly repairs for objects which had been “not a part of the drive system.” Nonetheless, they induced the drive system to fail. Additionally, I managed to peel off two components of the undercar fiberboard aero defend. The primary occasion occurred once I hit 12” of water that I didn’t see in a flash flood at 40 mph. The second occasion occurred once I drove my automobile out of the Brighton ski resort parking zone in 6” of packed snow.

Tesla Mobile Repair Technician

Tesla cellular restore technician jacking up my automobile and holding the brand new entrance aero defend in my driveway. January 26, 2023. Picture by Fritz Hasler.

It appears to me that Tesla ought to have fastened without cost the 2 objects that induced my drive system to fail because the drive system was nonetheless below guarantee. Additionally, the fiberboard aero shields below the automobile aren’t very sturdy. In actual fact, when the entrance undercar aero defend failed, it was changed by a brand new plastic model which is supposedly extra sturdy.

Tesla Mannequin 3 Lengthy Vary Restore & Upkeep Value Summation

  • 3 units of tires: $578.93 + $565.44 + $1,252.23 = $2,395.60
  • Exchange rear aero defend: ~$427.16
  • 4-wheel alignment × 3: $370.75
  • Exchange Superbottle (battery and drive system cooling valve): $672.75
  • Exchange PTC (the cabin heater failure induced the drive system to freeze up): $1,148
  • Exchange entrance aero defend: $427.16
  • Whole: $5,441.42

Out-of-Guarantee Tesla Mannequin 3 Service & Upkeep Prices vs. Prolonged Guarantee

I nearly universally keep away from shopping for prolonged warranties on merchandise that I purchase. That features the ~10 cars I’ve owned through the years. I assume that I’ll lower your expenses by self-warranty. Within the instances the place the product, like a automobile battery or automobile tires, comes with a guaranty, I’ve by no means collected on one. I’ve just lately been deluged with adverts from Automobile Protect attempting to promote me an prolonged service guarantee on my car. I obtained a quote from Automobile Protect simply now. They need $220/month, or $2640/12 months, with a $100 deductible for every incident. If I had bought a Automobile Protect coverage once I went over 50,000 miles in November 2021, I might have paid 14 × $220 = $3000 by now. My restore prices over that interval have been $2247, much less $300 in hypothetical deductibles could be $1947. Due to this fact, it has been cheaper to date to go and not using a Automobile Protect coverage.

I’ve informed myself that my EV shall be so dependable {that a} Automobile Protect coverage could be a waste of cash. Nonetheless, I’m not unaware of the flowery laptop, show display screen, and electronics in my Tesla, in addition to the electrical seats and home windows, stereo system, and so forth. and so forth. and so forth. There are many issues within the automobile that would fail … and now I’m studying about failure modes of issues I by no means thought of. For now, I’m forward and I’m holding my breath and hoping for the most effective for the longer term.

Please add your experiences with repairs in your Tesla autos within the feedback part under.


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