Keycards Not Working After Rear End Collision

Keycards Not Working After Rear End Collision

My 2018 LR RWD Model 3 was rear ended a month ago and am waiting for my body shop appointment. The car is drivable despite $16,000+ damage. Took about 2 weeks for all the parts to arrive. I posted photos in another thread.

My issue is the key cards no longer unlock the doors. The cards do enable driving however. I read in the forums this may be a software issue. I receive my usual software updates but they always fail to complete. Possibly due to damaged sensors in the rear bumper. I contacted Tesla about the keycard issue and they sent an update to my car but it failed as well.

My concern is if I take the car to the shop for the collision repair, how will the shop unlock the doors without the key cards? Do I let them register one of their cellphones to the car?

I inquired via the Tesla App which initiated a Tesla mobile service appointment this week but I’m not sure what they can do.

Another weird thing that popped up was after the collision, the dome lights flash on and off....3 seconds on....3 seconds off. This is with the doors closed.

Anyone else have a similar problem / solution or suggestions to my issue?


apodbdrs | 09. Dezember 2019

@gwleong, to open the car, the key card works off the door sensor, whereas the phone works via Bluetooth. The mobile service should be able to fix it, probably just a poor connection due to the collision. Let us know if the mobile service fixes the issue.

vmulla | 10. Dezember 2019

Tesla certified collision shops work together with Tesla service centers. There's often multiple handoffs between the two to make sure the car is 100% before you take delivery.
I would expect Tesla and the collision repair folks to work it out. Also, collision centers have a lot of tools that service centers have - not all, but many. They can probably handle this key issue themselves.

I had the b pillar key card sensor issue on my delivery day BTW.

Pepperidge | 10. Dezember 2019

May be you can buy a fob or borrow one from SC?

gwleong | 10. Dezember 2019

Just spoke to a Tesla mobile service rep on the phone in preparation for his mobile repair visit. He explained to me that the software updates go through a routine including sensor checks and such which is probably why my software updates always fail. Therefore, it’s not possible to reprogram the pillar sensors for the keycards until the body damage repairs are complete.

So he recommended me to temporarily change my App password and allow the shop to access the car using one of their phones. And then change the password upon completion of the repairs. Not too comfortable with that but maybe no other way. I mentioned I might just disable the “walk away lock” feature but he said would be better to use the phone method. Not sure why.

So for now, no mobile service visit necessary.

Frank99 | 10. Dezember 2019

If you disable the "Walk away Lock" feature, it means the body shop can't lock your car when they park it outside during the day, and if they do lock it, they can't get back in.
If it were me, I'd drag one of the old cellphones out of the drawer, install the app and password, and hand that to them. If you don't have an old cell phone, perhaps a $30 one ( ) would be worth the investment for your peace of mind....

lbowroom | 10. Dezember 2019

" it means the body shop can't lock your car when they park it outside during the day"

Are you worried he's going to leave valuables in it?

gwleong | 10. Dezember 2019

No....the body shop said they prefer a working keycard. Or they will have to program one of their phones as a key. The cars are kept locked up inside a building.

Anyone know if the sign-in credentials are the same or different as the Tesla website?

vcminc1980 | 12. Dezember 2019

My passenger side will not lock or unlock with the key card but the car accepts software updates with no problem. I haven't had the car long enough to get it registered with Tesla yet although that is in process.

kevin_rf | 12. Dezember 2019

vcminc1980, the keycard only works on the driver side. Tesla does not install an RFID reader on the passenger side.

donharvey2323 | 13. Dezember 2019

If there is nothing inside the car to steal and the car can not be driven then just leave it unlocked.

mikensher | 13. Dezember 2019

I just got new key card because old one was lost. But they do not work. Do they need to be activated?

bpatter123 | 14. Dezember 2019

Can’t help with the keycard/ lock issue. But this sort of thing happened after I was reared- car was drivable but weird stuff did and did not work. The ultimate issue was a “body module “ tucked deep to the rear bumper. It is a black plastic device about the size of a wallet which handles Bluetooth issues in the car. The module itself was not damaged but the connection was. Very likely the body shop needs to take things apart just to get info for an estimate and parts needed list. Ask them to check the connection at that time.