Water Spill on the Inside of the Car

Water Spill on the Inside of the Car

Good morning community,

Recently, I read a story of someone spilling water on the floor of the Model S causing the car to die. Has anyone heard of this or had this happen to them? I would have suspected the company would have thought that one through, yes?

NumberOne | 26 October 2013

This sounds like it is not true. How much water would a person have to spill inside the vehicle to get any of the electronics wet. 30 Gallons? Spilling a water bottle or cup full should not have any impact whatsoever.

Thomas N. | 26 October 2013

It's an urban myth. You're talking about one review from some Google or Yelp review of the Model S. It's poorly written and completely unsubstantiated. I read it too back in the early days of my online research. Supposedly she spilled a full ice-chest of water in the frunk or something silly like that.

There are thousands of owners registered here. I would love to see one story of somebody spilling water in their car and having it shut down.

TikiMan | 26 October 2013

Actually, I think it was a post on this site you are referring to, where someone said their friend spilled an entire 24oz can of Rockstar energy drink, and it spilled behind the dashboard / 17" touch-screen, thus causing some electronics to short-circuit (or something to that nature). | 26 October 2013

Here's the energy drink spill thread:

Didn't short circuit anything, but made a sticky mess.

TikiMan | 26 October 2013


I guess I got that thread, and the one where the owner drove through a flooded street mixed up.

JJ Cleghorne | 26 October 2013

Here is the story I was referring to. One comment from Motor Trend's 2013 COTY award review:

grace.eggi Jun 30, 2013

My car is only 2 months old

my husband accidentally spilled the cooler inside the car after he hit the break, and the car just stopped in the middle of the road. the car was totally dead (was embarrassed as a lot of people that drove by knew it was a Tesla ~___~ and waved at me) and waited 2hrs for the roadside assistant to arrive.

the next day the Costa Mesa service center called, and they were willing to change the connectors that had water damage for us for free, I WAS HAPPY THAT TESLA WOULD TAKE CARE OF THIS ISSUE AS I BELIEVE THEY SHOULD BECAUSE THIS IS NOT SOMETHING UNCOMMON TO HAVE IT HAPPENED INSIDE OF A CAR, WHO DOES NOT HAVE A COOLER? AND WHO DOES NOT CARRY WATER IN THE CAR?

after a wkend, I called Tesla to check on my car, and they told me that the original way they thought would work did not work, and the car is still dead ,~__~, and said needed to change the whole harnest which will cost me $7500+, I was so shocked with what water had done to a car like this? THAT'S UNBELIEVABLE TO ME, so say if it rained, and you jumped into your car wet, oopse, you can't go anywhere, because you are wet, and you got your car wet, and your car won't start? does it make sense to anyone? does tesla say NO WATER IN ANY TESLA VEHICLE?

this might be the draw back of EV car, I love the car, however, this incident scared me with thoughts of what if your kids or pets peed inside the car? then the car just dies in the middle of no where, it might create serious problems, and what if there is a emergency and you spilled your water and you can't go anywhere 'cuz the car is dead? What if my husband was on the highway, and the car just stopped in the middle of the highway, imagine what would have happened because the car does not have outlet for water inside out? I honestly think this is a design flaw, and this is serious!!!!

A car MFG needed to test a car's safety under thousands of different situations and situation's simulations to know how the car would react when things happen, and for a car like this to just STOP, and once STOPPED, you can't even put it into neutral to push the car to the side of the road? THAT'S A HAZARD FOR ALL, and prevent it from happening. THIS IS A CAR, CAN YOU IMAGINE YOUR CAR JUST SHORTS OUT LIKE THIS? THIS IS A TESLA, NOT A cellphone, even cellphone is waterproof these days, and does not just die on you on the spot!

Anyone who reads this, what would you do if you were me?

Read more: | 26 October 2013

I saw the gallons of water spill post when it first posted. I suspect it is real, but not all that surprised that the Model S (or any car) is not designed for water to be dumped all over the electronics. Seemed like a classic case of "Blame someone else for my stupidity!".

I expect most vehicles would be totaled should you flood the car with water. Just not a smart thing to do. Aside from electronics, you can have rust (in a steel car), mold and connectors can corrode.

riceuguy | 26 October 2013

This is absurd. Even if it is true (and I hope someone with grammar this bad isn't a fellow owner!), why on earth wouldn't you put the cooler in the storage bin in the trunk, or put a seatbelt around it, or empty it out??

Thomas N. | 26 October 2013

Yes, that is the one I had thought the OP was talking about. It is ludicrous to me.

"say if it rained, and you jumped into your car wet, oopse, you can't go anywhere, because you are wet, and you got your car wet, and your car won't start?" Sorry but that is a LOL comment!!!!

Tesla is polarizing as a company. You have to sift through reviews carefully and try to determine the motive behind the review. This one has little detail and no follow-up.

I'm not worried because I don't allow coolers of water in my car. If I were to be carrying 400 lit candles and when I accelerated like a jacka$$ they caught the interior of the Tesla on fire would I post a review and say "say you were barbecuing, and your clothes were really hot, and you hop in the car and the interior catches on fire! Come on Tesla, we want to drive without dying in fire please! Zero stars for this car!" ?

AmpedRealtor | 26 October 2013

Apparently she is now afraid to let her child urinate in the vehicle. First, damn that's a lot of pee. Second, you let your kid pee in the car? Does this Tesla belong to the Honey Boo Boo family?

J.T. | 27 October 2013

@Amped It isn't the Honey Boo Boos of the world, the Kardashians or the National Enquirer that are the problem. Just like Tesla, Apple and McDonald's the entertainment industry has found a product that the public will buy and they're selling it.

Isn't that what this country is all about?

Now, if you want to complain about the intelligence of the general public, that's a different discussion altogether. But the Honey Boo Boo family has hit pay dirt. I'd be fascinated to know, once the cameras stop, how it has changed their lives, if at all.

David Trushin | 27 October 2013

What is a honey boo boo?

J.T. | 27 October 2013

@David You really don't want to know. I wish I didn't.

Thomas N. | 27 October 2013

It's a type of bacteria, David.

Sudre_ | 27 October 2013

I had followed a discussion about this a while ago. It also lead to several links of gas cars that had similar sever damage from liquids being split in the wrong places. One was spilt in the trunk. It happens in almost all cars.

BMW water spill

Lexus damaged just from sitting in the rain.

I don't really feel like digging up more.