Model S


edited November -1 in Model S
With the advent of winter in Chicago my 2015 Tesla 85D 4 months old / driven 5000 miles looses almost 40-50% range.

Jan 18th - The car was charged to 237 and was preheated to 72 deg F before leaving the garage. Drove 106.3 miles and had only 44miles left on the battery range indicator (yellow battery icon) - outside temperature 6deg F. NET LOSS OF RANGE 87 miles (the 44 miles would only have given me a another 20+ miles of which the loss would have been 107 miles on one trip.
Dec 23rd - This loss of range was noticed earlier LOSING 70 miles on a full daily charge outside temp 42 deg F.

Tesla tech had advised me to preheat the car after Dec 23rd issue to heat the car which also triggers the heating of battery pack 30 m before leaving. Heating the battery pack apparently draws a lot of power to heat the battery - pumps - coolant heater etc - they also advised me to keep it plugged in at all times when not in use at home.

DAILY LOSS PARKED IN GARAGE IS 3 to 7 miles. Please let me know for those living in cold weather areas if you have noticed similar loss of range as I would like TESLA to remedy this.


  • edited November -1
    Also in Chicago. I see exactly the same issues. Getting about half the normal range, especially in the really cold weather of the last few days (near 0 degrees). I thought it would improve if I weren't taking such short trips, but from your experience, it seems that is not the case.

    I assume a lot of energy is going into keeping the battery warm. And I have almost no regen available for several miles of a trip, and that is going to give mileage a real hit as well.

    Of course, it's disappointing, but I assume this is physics and am not going to make a fuss about it.
  • edited November -1
    Losing range in cold is a very well known and well documented condition native to batteries. It's nothing something Tesla can necessarily "remedy" though I'm sure they are experimenting to see if they can lessen the effects.

    But there's also a lot more that could be contributing to your range loss including driving into headwinds, elevation changes and high speeds.

    You will find more information linked to this comprehensive thread:
  • edited November -1
    Something you might also try both ways is with and without Range Mode turned on. The battery heater is tied into that setting. With Range Mode turned on, the car will not use the battery heater as much, saving that quite significant energy drain, but regen will be limited for much longer, since the battery will be staying colder. It's a tradeoff you have available.
  • edited November -1
    Yes. As noted, this is due to physics and not really negotiable!
    I live in Chicago as well- my S behaves as does yours, losing 1/3 to 1/2 expected mileage during the past sev days. My W usage is approx 400/ mile. We need to move to a warmer city!
  • edited November -1
    I use the 50% loss figure when figuring my real range in bitterly cold weather. I find it's pretty accurate. Range isn't a big issue for me as most of my trips aren't that far and I keep the car plugged in between trips. I drive at normal speeds and use heat as desired.
  • edited November -1
    Today i drove from south bend to chicago in 0-5 degree temps and 13 mph headwind. Stated with 245 ended with 80, 136 miles total. I preheated the car so the regen line was at 60 for about 12 miles and then went away. Had heater at 69 with fan at 2, but the sun was bright so it was fine in the cabin. Had range mode off, but i always have it off. It's most efficient to drive with the battery at optimum operating temperature. I was pleased with the performance.
  • edited November -1
    The temporary decrease in range is not a 'loss'. A loss would be permanent, irreversible. You have a temporary decrease in available range when towing, driving uphill, or traveling during inclement weather conditions in ALL vehicles. It is simply more pronounced with electric vehicles, because currently, the energy reserves stored in battery packs are so small as compared to fuel tanks in ICE vehicles.

    <img src=" Park_-_Elon Musk 0002.png&quot; width="600" alt="Elon Musk says, 'Don't Worry About It!'>
  • ICE vehicles do this too, they just hide it better as they already waste so much energy making heat and noise.
  • edited November -1
    I'm planning a trip to the French Alps. The last leg of the journey is 65 miles uphill in snow (and back to the supercharger). When I asked Tesla if I would be OK for the round trip in my P90D they said it would be fine and I was just suffering range anxiety.
    Not so sure now, I may need a friendly native to donate a socket for a few hours !
  • edited November -1
    Yes even if it is to keep it plugged in and warned before you return. This will give you the most carefree experience.
  • edited November -1
    I lose 20% range in my Prius when the temperature goes below freezing.
    This holds true for the past 120,000 miles in my current one.

    I also prewarm my car and that accounts for a bunch of it.

    It is understandable that the MS loses more range because it does not have the ICE providing "support" to the electric components.

    A 40-50% loss of range will definitely change my thoughts on purchasing it. Our second home up in the Berkshires would bring it very close to its limit.

    Does anybody see a solution here besides waiting for a dramatic increase in range due to battery pack size increases? I would have to wait assuming a 50% loss for a 400 mile range battery pack.
  • edited November -1
    @david yes a 200 mile trip is certainly stretching it even in a 90D. My experience in long distance driving in cold weather is about a 33% range loss.

    Suggestion 1: Hope for a supercharger on the way.

    Suggestion 2: Acquire a third home somewhere in between #1 and #2.
  • edited November -1
    This is why more range is needed for BEV's to be good year-round vehicles.
  • edited November -1
    I find slowing down makes a huge difference! Preheating, watching heat, etc is great, but simply watching speed makes the bigger difference for me.
  • edited November -1
    @Tsoltz I don't think speed will be the problem ascending the Alps - averaging 30mph on a good day - but the incline and the bends will use the power.
  • edited November -1
    @david, Keep in mind that the really bad losses of 40-50% are for a short trip (or multiple short trips), because it is having to do a lot of warming up. On longer trips, where you get to keep driving, the motor and inverter are continuing to generate heat from their normal operation, and the system stays warmer without doing as much extra heating. The reduction goes down some, and it's more like 20-30% for longer drives.
  • edited November -1
    For all who responded Thankyou for your response. Was not sure if this was an isolated issue apparently not it seems standard for cold weather from you comments. I have also asked tech support to review the logs. Will revert if they come with anything not already mentioned. Thanks again.
  • edited November -1
    I'm in NJ and I'm heading into my 3rd winter with the car. Range loss in cold weather is well documented, as PhillyGal mentions. That said, after you have the car for a while, you just live with it.

    Here's my advice. Take your starting range and multiply that by .7...that will give you a real world range number for the worst cold weather conditions. I've never lost more than 30% even in the worst conditions, so for me, the 70% adjustment works well. If you are really seeing worse range loss than that, then use a 60% adjustment.

    When I have longer trips (over 160-170 miles round trip based on a daily charge), I just plan on supercharging either on my way out or on my way home, and that fills any gaps nicely.

    Hope this helps.
  • edited November -1
    In addition to adjustment for temperature, one must adjust for the difference between <strong>rated</strong> range and actual range. The great majority of drivers will not achieve rated range even in the summer. There is no simple adjustment formula. Rated Range is an estimate based on some arcane EPA testing procedure that is congruent with actual driving in only a small minority of cases.

    M'self, I have chosen to display percentage of battery charge remaining (State of Charge; SoC) rather than Rated Range on my instrument panel.
  • edited November -1
    I too see it! Worse when I do not pre-heat. I drive 5 minutes in ~3 miles to parkways, another 17 miles and 1/4 mile to work off parkway, 5 days a week.

    I now plug in every night and ensure I turn on climate to 70 degrees (from 19 this morning).

    Loss of regen, heater when really cold taking lot more out of my baby.

    I start out with 239 (aaackk my battery draining- down from 240 after charge--panic ;-)

    When i forget to pre-heat properly, I will be in the anywhere from 185 to 190's (travelling at 65-75 most of the trip). Today I preheated well, and backed off the go pedal and currently have 205 left on the meter.

    So a 20 mile trip, I paid a 14 mile tax.

    I know i run more efficient using TACC than when I manual drive, I have lot areas to speed up than slow etc. which costs efficiency.
  • edited November -1
    I don't think anyone in this thread has mentioned that using the seat heaters with climate control off reduces energy use.
  • edited November -1
    What amazed me the other day is that after sitting out in 20-25 degrees (F) all day, my P85D had no regeneration (dashed line on the energy graph all the way up to the '0' level). I had never encountered that. And driving the Tesla felt like driving an ICE vehicle-no "engine" braking at all when I lifted my foot off the accelerator.Obviously my Wh/hr was much higher than usual. After a5 minutes of driving, I barely had any regeneration.
  • edited November -1
    Wow, my exact same losses. I drove round trip to the airport several weeks ago, 40 degrees F, came home with probably 30% battery left, no worries. I made the exact same trip, same traffic, same time but with 12 degrees F average and had a 42% range loss.

    Here in Colorado I have documented about a 30% loss of range, on average, for 20 - 30 degrees F driving temps. My 4-month old S 90D sounds the same as yours.

    So this seems standard ops, per everyone else's observations.

    Warmer weather will get the sap flowing. It's what I tell the missus, anyway...
  • edited September 2017
    Hi there,

    I'm considering Tesla but cold weather is definitely part of life in winter for me and there isn't always a garage to park in (@ -10 or -20 F that'll affect range for sure). That said I figure seeing as I'm no stranger to block heaters I can just keep it plugged in when is really cold weather. Has anyone tracked how much it takes to keep it plugged when exposed to the elements on brutal days (nothing like running up family's electricity bill as gift visiting) ?
  • edited August 2018
    Sorry to bump this tread again, I'm hoping that almost year brings a bit more input about behavior in really cold weather. Any thoughts about -10 to -20 F (~ -20 - -30 ) ? Are we talking straight 50% loss ?
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