Anyone had problems with squirrels, other rodents gnawing on wires?

Anyone had problems with squirrels, other rodents gnawing on wires?

I live in a very cold climate (Minnesota) and have had issues with critters gnawing on wires in previous cars I've owned. This is my first winter with my M3 and wondering if this is a concern on this vehicle. Not sure if there are any wires exposed anywhere that they could get too but wanted to see what the community has to say on this.

MAB1980 | 14 december 2019

I have not, but my inlaws use to have rats living in the engine bay in one of their cars.

Rest assured, if a rodent gnaws through the HV cable, there won't be much left of it [the rodent]. :P

qpaclafraq | 14 december 2019

Heh - I thought about the consequences for said rodent but I admit to a lack of empathy in this case.

qpaclafraq | 14 december 2019

BTW, obviously I'm talking about a detached garage. Actually, a very old and rodent-accessible one.

apodbdrs | 14 december 2019

There was prior post regarding this issue, some months back. It turns out wiring in most new cars including Teslas have a soy based ingredient that rodents are attracted to and love to chew on. Some people recommend spraying peppermint oil, simple green, coyote urine and other repellents as a solution. Good luck, but better find something quick before they do real damage to the wiring.

Frank99 | 14 december 2019

The first time I found evidence of a rodent near my Model 3 would force me to spend the next several nights lying on the ground under the car with my .22 waiting for one of those ******s to twitch a nose in my direction.
I've been fighting a battle for the last couple of years dealing with rats trying to eat my Expedition. I don't have much sympathy for them at the moment.

Ross1 | 14 december 2019

We have more issues with hitting kangaroos, wallabies, possums and Tasmanian Devils.
Platypus and koalas not usually an issue, but snakes get into the engine bay.
I had a spider on the sunvisor who had his paws around both edges.
Snakes compete with the fuel injection process.

M3phan | 15 december 2019

I’ve got a bugger of a raccoon that keeps sneaking in every other night and unplugging my charge port… Bugger.

Atoms | 15 december 2019

Sounds like time to put rat and mice traps out. If it was me, I would surround my car with 3 moats of continuous traps and then a laser cutter system with lid at detector to catch any flying variety.

Atoms | 15 december 2019


coleAK | 15 december 2019

This is a valid concern, I’ve always thought rodents will be the end of many Tesla’s as they are many other newer cars. Yes wire insulation contains soy and rodents love to chew on them.

kevin_rf | 15 december 2019

Actually, there was a thread on rodents making it into the front motor and eating a harness.

Magic 8 Ball | 15 december 2019

I worry more about a gerbil sneaking up my pant leg. Nice that we have a growing population of GH Owls in our 'hood.

apodbdrs | 15 december 2019

Most rodents stay away from will lit areas!

Joe M | 16 december 2019

I worry about rodents as well since mine sits garaged without moving for most of the winter. My strategy is to set at 65%, charge, then reduce charge setpoint to 40%. I check daily and it takes a month or more to get close to 40%. When it does I repeat the cycle. I am hoping to reduce the thermal footprint.

bruryan | 16 december 2019

I have a neighbor who surrounds his pickup with a string of lights. Just lays them on the ground, right out in his driveway. This area is ripe with the little bastrds. Even the phone and cable boxes are left askew to allow light or air in (?). So if the old coot surrounds his pu it must be a thing.
I'm a coot too' but he's a couple a years older.

bingodog | 16 december 2019

Put peppermint oil on cottontails, just a drop because this is potent and put them in front of the car

derotam | 16 december 2019

Just surround your car with is an example of what it might look like...

qpaclafraq | 16 december 2019

You are some fungis! Do appreciate the useful and funny (mostly funny - I'm looking at you derotam) responses. First time posting so I'm getting acquainted.

I did buy a couple of products today, one a peppermint oil spray and the other a bottle of what looked like cat litter that was full of fox or coyote urine (mmm). Found another product later that I'll probably try next (

robert rogus | 17 december 2019

I had mice living in my air filter once. I had mice damage the main fuel line out of the gas tank once. The can’t do that to me anymore, though they could still do other mischief. ;)

Manjushr | 17 december 2019

yep. strategic scented dryer sheets help, steel wool, cats. rat traps, poison.. as an integrated package.. starting with the latter, and graduating in reverse.

derotam | 17 december 2019

@Manjusher: (joking here...) so just to get this right your proposed order is to start with poison, move to rat traps, then go to the animal shelter and adopt a cat. When the cat doesn't work, then go to steel wool and lastly dryer sheets?

Pg3ibew | 17 december 2019

Silly question. Did you guys ever worry when you had an ICE car? I have had cars my whole life, I never worried. Unless the car was gonna sit in a garage, unused for extended periods of time, I wouldnt be concerned.

Passion2Fly | 17 december 2019

Yes, I had my windshield fluid hoses damaged by rats recently... for some reason they didn’t touch the wires, just the tubing... and it was my X, not my 3...

Pg3ibew | 17 december 2019

If poisoned rats are eaten by cats, the cats will die.

Magic 8 Ball | 17 december 2019

Please do not use poison under any circumstance. We are finally getting a nice population of Great Horned Owls back in our 'hood and when they eat poisoned rodents (usually easy pickings because they are half dead already) they get poisoned and die.

Pg3ibew | 17 december 2019

100 percent agree @Magic

Just_Ted | 17 december 2019

Okay, I have dealt with this.
1. I got off light ($170 in damage to front sensor harness, NOT covered by warranty, service rep related a story of someone who had $4K damage done to the rear wiring harness, mostly labor to remove motor and get to damage! Had to get insurance involved.)
2. Bought metal garbage cans for myself and immediate neighbors (renters on both sides, row houses, parking pad and garbage in an alley)
3. Sprayed fox urine (got it on the internet from a hunting supply store) in the wheel wells, replenished after each rain. (I have seen fox run up the alley, I am close to the Stanley/Black and Decker HQ campus where I think they have a den. Pick a urine for your local predator: i.e. if you have bobcat, get bobcat urine. coyote, coyote urine... you get the picture)
4. I have a trap regime going, trap lines where I see the rat trails between yards, checked daily, got about 20 so far.
5. Since trapping and urine, I have not seen any droppings under the car (look right at the bottom steering knuckle in front, bottom control arm in back. The rats do a little chin-up on the suspension to get in where it is warm next to the battery. They poop as they go in and you can see little droppings when you move the car or look underneath.)

M3phan | 17 december 2019

@ Just_Ted, “...the rats do a little chin-up...”, funniest visualization of my evening!

M3phan | 17 december 2019

“Hey Vinnie, it’s warmer up here. Come on! Chin on up pal!”
“Ok, hang on....*strain*grunt*...glad I did my P90X this morning...”

charles | 21 december 2019

I have an array of 8 traps around the car. Effective so far. They need to be checked daily. I would like to know about access points or air intakes for HVAC and battery cooling system so I can cover them with heavy gauge stainless steel mesh. Did this with my last two Hondas after they ate the air filters and filled the ducts with insulation, pee and feces. Anybody know where these inlets are in the Model 3? There's got to be one in the front and maybe an outlet in the rear?