Electric car owners learned the hard way during the recent polar vortex that their batteries cannot hang onto a charge when temperatures dip that low. Tesla owners, in particular, discovered that they cannot open their doors very well after a winter storm either.
Tesla’s Model 3 owners are filling social media and online forums with complaints about their vehicles not performing well during the extreme cold the polar vortex brought with it. While cold temperatures will more quickly drain a battery in general, Tesla vehicles aren’t doing well.
“My biggest concern is the cold weather drained my battery 20 to 25 miles overnight and an extra five to ten miles on my drive to work. I paid $60,000 to not drain my battery so quickly,” New Jersey resident Ronak Patel told Bloomberg.
Patel owns a Model 3 and wasn’t happy with its performance. Salim Morsy explained that it’s Panasonic’s batteries manufactured for Tesla and not Tesla, said the Bloomberg new energy finance analyst.
“It happens to Chevy with the Bolt and Nissan with the Leaf,” he said.
The door design for Tesla’s Model 3 is futuristic and cool – when it isn’t wintertime. The handles are flush with the exterior of the car. In order to open the door, the driver or passenger pushes on one side of the handle, then pulls on the other side to open it.
So maybe the Model 3 isn't the best winter car. pic.twitter.com/e7laP1aADu
— Andrea Falcone (@asfalcone) January 30, 2019
But wintertime’s abundance of ice, particular what came during the polar vortex, has made it incredibly difficult to open those types of doors. Software engineer Andrea Falcone tweeted a photo of her frozen door handle and was less than impressed.
“I can’t wait all day for this silly car,” she tweeted.
Others argued that it’s winter and things freeze, deal with it. Bloomberg shared that Canadians are suggesting car owners place dental adhesive film over their door handles to help prevent them from freezing.
In response to the weather-induced issues, Tesla owner Elon Musk tweeted that the company would release software updates to improve the car’s winter weather performance after it had learned of motorists’ concerns.
But according to Top Speed, the “fix” that was released to solve freezing windows, door handles, and charge ports actually caused further problems.
Even after warming up their vehicles for 10 to 15 minutes, car owners still couldn’t open their doors or lower the windows. Fred Lambert, editor-in-chief for Electrek, tested the new fixes issued by the company and learned that the patch just wasn’t working.
It was 12 degrees Fahrenheit and he warmed up his Model 3 for 20 minutes.
“My driver’s window did go down when pulling on the door handle, but it didn’t go up after closing the door. It looks like Tesla is not allowing the window to go completely up anymore in order to enable people to safely open the doors in cold weather,” he told Top Speed.
Winter isn’t done yet, so hopefully Tesla fixes these issues very soon.