Model S

Door handle not functioning

edited November -1 in Model S
I took delivery of my Model S in March 2015. Since then I have had to replace 3 door handles when they stopped "presenting" either from the fob or the touch screen. This sounds somewhat excessive. Has anyone had a similar issue over a similar period of time?
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Comments

  • edited November 2017
    Try rebooting?

    Some have had these issues, yes.
  • edited November 2017
    I had a problem with my driver door handle getting stuck in the out position occasionally. They adjusted it and no problem since.
  • edited November -1
    March 2015 vehicle, door handle replaced September 2017
  • edited November -1
    Could you hear the motor running trying to open it. Had the paddle gear on mine replaced today.
  • edited November 2017
    @Bighorn

    That's exactly what mine is doing. Driver's side, August 2014 vehicle. Ranger coming out tomorrow to fix it. Just started doing that yesterday. It's stuck in and won't present. The puddle light is on in there and it's just whirring away.
  • edited November -1
    @Speedy
    Broken paddle gear—very common. It’s probably a 2 dollar part which can be replaced in under an hour. I’ve had two rebuilt out of warranty and received goodwill both times. Under warranty no problem obviously, but they’ll charge $200 for an extended warranty deductible possibly. New ones used to go for $1000 but I think that’s come down.
  • edited November -1
    BH, I found the switch that's in the assembly that usually breaks the wire. Ordered some for my bag o'goodies. About $2 each on Digikey.
  • edited November 2017
    Part number?
  • edited November -1
    @akikiki
    He replaced those as well since the wires were showing signs of cracking at the joint.
    He said he’d rebuilt hundreds of the paddle gears at the service center but this was his first in the field.
  • edited November 2017
    Digi-key Part Number 255-3525-ND, Desc Switch Snap Act SPDT 100ma 20v

    digikey.com
  • edited November 2017
    Yes. Mine is a March 2015 car. No problems under warranty, but within a week of the warranty expiration, the first of three door handles I've replaced failed. The good news is that they're cheaper to replace now than they were 6 months ago. ;-)
  • edited November 2017
    June 2013 Model S - had to replace all handles last year.
  • edited November 2017
    March 2015 Model S.

    Changed driver side handle 2 weeks ago.
  • edited December 2017
    Yep - right at the warranty expiration my door handles started failing. I’m scheduled to replace the third one on Tuesday with 60,000 miles / 2 years old. I’ve been told that weather / water shorts them out. The first one was close to $900. Tuesday’s appt sounds more like $700. Nice that the price came down, but I feel like this is a design flaw/fail. The prospect of spending two or three grand every couple of years for door handles has jaded my love for the vehicle. People ask me all the time how I like my car and tell me they are considering a Tesla. Until a month or two ago I always said I love it and can’t imagine driving something else. After climbing into the driver’s seat from the passenger side in the pouring rain for a couple of days, I’ve been less enthusiastic about recommending a model S. :(

    Sorry for the vent. I really didn’t want a new door handle for Christmas.
  • edited November -1
    @Tanya
    DIYers can fix the door handles for between $1.18 and $35. They are well understood and failures have nothing to do with water infiltration. I've had two rebuilt out of warranty for zero dollars. Maybe if you'd bought the extended warranty they'd be more prone to offer goodwill or just charge you the deductible.
  • edited December 2017
    Add me to the door handle paddle list. Front passenger door lights on motors running 24 hours a day but the handle does not present. Jan 2015 98,000 miles P85D. Does anyone have an idea on a self fix diy for this ?
  • edited November -1
    @aviation
    In the meantime, the handle works, but you'll need to loop a string around it so you can pull it out. Doesn't take much effort to get it out, but use something that won't mar the paint when you pry it out in order to tie the string on.
  • edited November -1
    @bighorn
    Great idea on the string to pulll out the handle. I spent about an 1 1/2 hour following the video and was able to remove the front passenger panel and door handle on my 2015 P85D. The only difficult part was the top right nut of the door handle unit. The only way I could reach it was by removing the inside and exterior door trim sill at the top of the door to allow me to push the window away from the handle unit which allow me to remove the nut. Even at that it was difficult to remove the door handle unit over the stud that the nut was on as the unit hit the glass just as the handle unit reached the end of the stud. I think if the door had been shut the window would have moved up an extra1/2 inch. I was not able to shut the door with the interior panel off so that was not an option for me. It’s going to be interesting to try and reinstall the door handle unit and place the nut back on the stud.
  • edited December 2017
    @aviation
    I've heard that that nut is a tougher step. Maybe watch some door videos, especially the audio installers, for tips. Not sure if a special tool makes it easier or what. It's what's kept me from taking the door apart just to see what's involved since it looked frustrating. The last handle I had fixed was done at a supercharger, and the mechanic had never done one in the field. It seemed his biggest issue was not having all his tools at his disposal. It was a rear door, so I don't know how that compares, but he decided to take the glass off to make it easier, and even then he struggled a bit to get the handle in/out. I don't know if pulling the fuse so the window doesn't drop would help, but it would mean opening the door without the glass down and rubbing the frame. I've had that happen when the window froze up and it's a little cringeworthy. Good luck with buttoning her up--all the best and I wish you the satisfaction of a job well done and a functioning door!
  • edited December 2017
    My driver's side front door also malfunctioning. Handle presents, but once I shut the door, I can hear the gear working very loudly (sort of a grinding sound). The handle then fails to retract and the light under the handle starts blinking. If I manually push the handle in, it sometimes retracts then presents again. After a while, the handle slams in (retracts) very violently and suddenly. Makes a very loud noise.

    I took delivery in September 2017. In 3 months, this will be the 4th time I am returning the car. Very dissatisfied with the car so far.
  • edited November -1
    @ Aviation
    I watched a Ranger replace my drivers door handle. He removed the trim piece on top of the door and inserted a small inflatable bag between the door and the window and inflated it. This gave him room to work. Hope this helps.
  • edited December 2017
    @chaesq, you didn't mention if yours is a new (as in 2017 model) or CPO. Handle failures in 2015 and newer seem rare.
  • edited December 2017
    This door handle issue is one that I'd expect any other manufacturer to issue a TSB for. Tesla dropped the ball on this one. Any that fail because of a design flaw that was later rectified should be handled as goodwill, but Tesla gave no indication of doing so.
  • edited November -1
    +1 Haggy
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