Model S

2016 P100D Steering Wheel Vibration - 3rd time in service center

Purchased the car on the Tesla website, and took delivery 10/26. As I was driving home I felt a steering wheel vibration. Pulled over at the nearest exit, called the service department, they told me to bring the car in.

Got an appointment for a couple days later - they ended up changing a bent rim. Drove home, wheel is still vibrating. I call the service center, they say to bring it back.

I bring the car back, then I am told the front drive unit needs to be replaced. So they make an appointment for me to come back in about two weeks. In the meantime, I change my wheels from 21" to 19" - the rims and tires are brand new. So I pick up the car, and head home - same exact vibration.

Call the service center back, they say it's because of the 19" tires being winter is still the same exact issue as before. So they tell me to come back to the service center, and bring my 21" wheels the car came with. That's where we are now. I just dropped off the car, with the wheels in the car for them to put back on and figure out the issue.

Any ideas?


  • Lane departure warning
  • The car is at about 50 mph when it happens - staying perfectly within the lane.
  • Still likely a balance or small rim bend. I’ve been through it. You need a good tire shop to diagnose it.
  • With the 21" tires I initially had on the car, they found a small bend, so they replaced the rim...the car still had the vibration, so they replaced the front drive unit.
  • Missed the part about new 19s with the same issue.
  • Will isolate it tomorrow, they are swapping back in my 21" rims which I know are good - after all, they changed a bent one.
  • I changed a bent rim and still had a smaller shimmy until I replaced the other rim on that side that hit the same pot hole, but did not appear out of round. Balance is also critical.
  • Is it possible that it's a suspension issue, or control arm?
  • Suspension is a broad proposition, though control arms don’t typically behave in such a manner. I have heard of the rare undiagnosable vibration. I took a gamble and bought a new rim and lucked out. I’d probably swap wheels front to back to see if you could impact the symptom. Are you still waiting on the DU change out?
  • The drive unit was already changed out, but the issue still persists. I picked up the car today when they told me it was ready, noticed the issue, went home got my original tires and drove it back.
  • Got it.
  • It can be something as innocuous as delaminating sound deadening foam.
  • Thanks I’ll text this to the tech to check.
  • Just wanted to close the loop on this, I had the wheels balanced on a force road balancer and that got rid of the vibrations.
  • Nailed it. Thanks for the update and enjoy the smooth ride!
  • omf_24_98103005,
    Thanks for taking us with you through this. It may help someone in the future.
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