The 20" Summer Performance tires suck.

The 20" Summer Performance tires suck.

3 of the 4 t my model 3 came with have been replaced already- Less than a year. The reason? Pot holes Busted the tires. Now I have lived in New York City My Whole Life.
I drive about 20 -27 mph on any local street at any given time. On all occasions I was doing less then 25 mph on on all occasions I hit a pot hole and it ruptured the tire.I have never gotten a float tire from hitting a pothole prior to this vehicle. Is this Just happening to me? did I somehow anger the Gods?

anyone else who lives in an Urban area having issues with the 20" Michelin tires?

mr.mark.tarver | 15 January 2020

Sorry for all of the Type- O's.

Bighorn | 15 January 2020

Very low profile tire doesn't afford much protection. Entirely why I opted for the Stealth 18s after being forced into 21s on my Performance Model S.

GHammer | 15 January 2020

Tire pressure to spec? Ive read about problems with low profile tires for years but ive never had any, im also diligent on keeping my tire pressure to spec.

Kary993 | 15 January 2020

We have quite a few potholes in San Diego. I have not had any issue with my M3P 20" wheels and low profile tires, but then I do spend a lot of time watching the road to avoid the inevitable. When using AP I often break out of it because I can see the car was going directly for a large pothole. It would be nice in the future if AP could see some of these....I know that is wishful thinking....

lbowroom | 15 January 2020

"I have never gotten a flat tire from hitting a pothole prior to this vehicle"

Any of your previous vehicles have 35 series tires?

jwferrara | 15 January 2020

I'm in Chicago, have had my car for 13 months, and deal with very large pot holes on a daily basis and shocking haven't had an issue with my 20" Michelin Pilot 4S tires but did get a bubble in the sidewall did with my 19" Pirelli Sottozero 3 winter tires.

I also lived in NYC for 10 years and never had a concern there but I was on 18"'s on my Infiniti therefore I think it's really the low profile aspect more than anything.

Did you have low profile tires on your previous whip?

rob | 15 January 2020

Lol @mr.mark.tarver

JAD | 15 January 2020

Don't hit potholes. I have always driven cars with low profile tires and never had an issue. My 16 year old was driving the 3P 2 weeks after getting his license and hit a pothole. I now have one new tire! My neighbors hit a pothole and have a new rim in their 3P as their tire pressure was a bit low. There is some luck involved, but scanning for and avoiding potholes is the answer, it isn't that the tires are bad.

rmg007 | 15 January 2020

Our vehicles are VERY HEAVY. Those batteries weigh quite a bit.

shank15217 | 15 January 2020

Your wheels are also probably bent, 21 inch wheels only look good.

mr.mark.tarver | 16 January 2020

@ shank - the wheels do look great
@JAD.- W.....t.......f.....? "Don't drive into potholes"- Reminds me of the "baby on board" joke , "ooh Wait a sec, better not hit that one"
@GHammer- Last time I hit a Pot hole @ 41 osi it ruptured and mad the tire not repairable. Last Pothole PSI was at 38, they where able to plug it saving me from getting a new one. So I suspect the Higher tire pressure makes it worse.

mr.mark.tarver | 16 January 2020

@ shank - the wheels do look great
@JAD.- W.....t.......f.....? "Don't drive into potholes"- Reminds me of the "baby on board" joke , "ooh Wait a sec, better not hit that one"
@GHammer- Last time I hit a Pot hole @ 41 osi it ruptured and mad the tire not repairable. Last Pothole PSI was at 38, they where able to plug it saving me from getting a new one. So I suspect the Higher tire pressure makes it worse.

FISHEV | 16 January 2020

"Any of your previous vehicles have 35 series tires?"

Wheel and tire guys told me that is a problem. The 35 tires are too narrow for the rims. It not only leads to the road rash we've all gotten as it sits inside the rim but leaves tire vulnerable to road damage as less secure in the rim. When I put on snows I went to 245/40/18 and that is when the wheel guys told me it was a better tire/wheel fit.

Might have been an Range issue that has Tesla with a wheel too big for the 35 width tires

Bighorn | 16 January 2020

35 has nothing to do with width.

FISHEV | 16 January 2020

"35 has nothing to do with width."

Sorry forgot my audience as was using @lbowroom's shorthand.

235/35/18 vs. 245/40/18.

NorthValley | 16 January 2020

This might help people understand what the '35' means...

FISHEV | 16 January 2020

"This might help people understand what the '35' means..."

I like this one as it compares the two tires side by side.

Bighorn | 16 January 2020

235 is the width for those talking out their ass.

FISHEV | 16 January 2020

"235 is the width for those talking out their ass."

And pics and links are for showing the disagreeable twits who post snark stuff like the above and who have given Tesla Forum its bad internet rep over the years, what the difference is between the tires.

FISHEV | 16 January 2020

And yes I know OP has 20", he needs to plug them into the calcs as they are my 18"

surfpearl | 16 January 2020

No pothole flats for me here in SoCal after combined ~20k miles on both summer and winter 20" tires. Doing my best to scan the road ahead, but have hit a few potholes that snuck up on me. Tire pressure 42 psi cold, I monitor it daily on every ride. It's typically 44-45 psi when driving.
Your 38 and 41 psi while driving and hitting potholes indicate that tire pressure is too low, so that may have contributed to your dismal results. Try monitoring the tire pressure regularly, starting with the first 1/4 mile while they are still cold, to get your cold tire pressure reading. Compare it to the door sticker numbers and adjust as necessary for seasonal changes. All tires need little TLC.
On the other hand, you are driving summer performance tires in NYC winter. That may be too cold for their rated temperature and could make them more prone to damage. Look up the tire specs and compare the dates/seasons when those flats occurred, you may find some correlation.

JAD | 16 January 2020

A 245/40 would look ridiculous and completely mess up the Speedo. You need to keep the circumference close, going both wider and taller is bad. You need something like 225/40 or 245/30( not quite, but that is the idea)

lbowroom | 16 January 2020

Fish, you were not using my shorthand. You are mixing and matching numbers that are coincidentally similar.

Series refers to sidewall percentage. 35 series tires have sidewalks that are 35% of the width. Yes, you can get away with a 245 and even a 255 width on all 3 stock wheel sizes they are 8.5” wide. On the 20’s, you have to stick with 35 series though.

Can’t wait for your ridiculous response.

lbowroom | 16 January 2020

Of course, wider tires will cost you range. I’m running 285/35 19s on 9.5” wide rears and 245/40 19s on 8.5” fronts. I’ll probably go to a 255 on the next front set.

FISHEV | 16 January 2020

"A 245/40 would look ridiculous and completely mess up the Speedo."

Looks great. The sidewall protects the rim by about 1/8 inch and there's not that odd gap look between wheel and tire. Michelin Xices in pics on 18" rims.

You can see the speedo comparison (and all other dims comparisons) using the tires size calc link above. I think someone here went up to 255/40/18.

lbowroom | 16 January 2020

Fish, he meant on a 20”

lbowroom | 16 January 2020

Keep pretending you didn’t read and understand my posts in between

lbowroom | 16 January 2020

You actually stepped down from a 45 series to a 40 which gives you less pothole protection while going wider to give yourself rim protection. Close enough to a wash

FISHEV | 16 January 2020

"Fish, he meant on a 20”"@lbowroom

Five comments previously.

"And yes I know OP has 20", he needs to plug them into the calcs as they are my 18"@Fishev.

"Keep pretending you didn’t read and understand my posts in between"@lwbowroom

You are doing enough of that for two people.

lbowroom | 16 January 2020

I understood you, I understood JAD. I explained to you what JAD meant which you should have understood on your own. You purposely don’t to agitate people

lbowroom | 16 January 2020

In another thread, I noticed that your latest description of your living situation now sounds like a 6 unit apartment or condo when it previously sounded like a compound with separate roofs to support each owners solar array. You are a misdirection master.

Paleomanjim | 17 January 2020

I've been trying to decide which Model 3 to get and was leaning toward the M3P. That is until I read all the horror stories about the damaged wheels and tires from potholes. I really like the looks of the MP3 as well as the performance and other upgrades. However, the problem with the tires is enough for me to switch my preference to the AWD Model instead, which I plan to order in early February. I'm guessing Tesla may loose a lot of sales of the MP3 from others as well who read these forums and watch Youtube videos describing the 20" tire problem. It would be nice if Tesla offered an 18" sport wheel option. There is a video on Youtube showing an after market 18" wheel that fits the larger disc brakes just fine and looks sharp as well. The 18" wheels are lighter, faster and smoother and are not damaged as easily by potholes. If the MP3 had the 18" sport wheels I would buy it over the AWD. Hopefully Tesla watches these forums and provides the options for 18 wheels in the future. I'm just glad I was able to find out about this problem from this forum and Youtube rather than after purchasing the vehicle. A big thanks for posting this problem above.

Scrannel | 17 January 2020

Well, you could buy the MP3 and switch wheels. Personally have had zero issues with the 20" tires, which also look great.

NorthValley | 17 January 2020

@OP no they don' the hands of good drivers they are phenomenal tires.

ODWms | 18 January 2020

@Paleomanjim, the P3D is available with the same 19” sport wheels that are available on the AWD. I, like others here have the 20” wheels, though, and have had zero problems. I personally would have hated to miss out on the performance of the PD3 for what basically amounts to a non-issue for the majority of owners.

Paleomanjim | 18 January 2020

I do not see the option for 19" sport wheels on the ordering page for the Model 3 Performance, is there a way to get that option page to show up? I do see that option for 19" sport wheels for the AWD for $1500 extra. My son had a BMW with the larger low profile wheels and did have several issues with pothole damages. Other than the looks there is no upside to the larger wheels and lots of downside. I'm guessing the 19" option on the PD3 would be at no charge? Anyway, that's for that info....

Sarah R | 18 January 2020

Kary993 | January 15, 2020
We have quite a few potholes in San Diego

Yes, I'm sure you do. But New York City potholes are legendary. Some of them approach Mythical Beast status. They've been known to swallow trucks whole.

FISHEV | 18 January 2020

" But New York City potholes are legendary. Some of them approach Mythical Beast status."

Mythical being the operative word. Most of the studies will conflate NY, NJ and CT burbs in with NYC with the burbs getting top bad road billing.

For example, this article says NYC is No. 8 in worst roads and then proceeds to provide the example of this being in Newark.

"One concrete cavity on Interstate 78 in Newark, New Jersey, refuses to disappear despite repeated patching efforts since the 1970s, says In 1978, The New York Times named U.S. Route 1&9 — also known as Tonnelle Avenue in the New Jersey 'burbs — one of the worst bottlenecks around. Today, trucks and commuters still have to contend with dangerous craters in the road."

"The top five states in terms of highest percent of highway miles in poor condition were Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Jersey, California and Hawaii, with 38 percent, 28 percent, 26 percent, 25 percent and 24 percent, respectively."

sidetracked1 | 18 January 2020

@Sarah R. God, yes! I grew up in NYC and I was with my dad when he hit a pothole that didn't just ruin the tire and wheel, it broke the whole back axle!

rsingh05 | 18 January 2020

I was worried about potholes when I ordered the 20” wheels. Fortunately no flats after 15 months and 21k miles. I live in the Bay Area and have traveled as far as the Canadian Rockies in the north and Grand Canyon in the south.

As @Jad said above, careful driving to avoid potholes does go a long way and reduces the odds of bent rims/sidewall bubbles by 80-90% imho.

rsingh05 | 18 January 2020

Forget to add that I do keep tire pressure at spec. Remember that 42 psi cold is 45-46 psi warm so fill it to 46 next time.

timcarsonjr | 6 April 2020

So far I’ve had no issues and the roads around my area suck. Potholes, bumps, uneven pavement from overloaded trucks, you name it. After reading the pothole issues before I bought my M3P, I make sure my tires are 42 PSI at the very least 46 hot at most.

flybyglass | 6 April 2020

Michelin 235/35ZR20 92Y XL is what your car should have. Referencing "92" have a 1389 lbs/tire load rating.

If you go to 245/35ZR20 95Y XL they will carry 1521 lbs/tire. (Michelin Pilot Sport 4S).

I did something similar on my 19" wheels going from 235 to 245. 2 benefits. Higher load rating than factory and the 10mm wider (5mm each side of rim) keeps the rims from dragging through the car wash and getting rim rash.

The 20" tires have the lowest load ratings of all the tire sizes offered by Tesla. Best load ratings are 18" wheels but as a com promise I went with the 19" and upped the width with Michelin Sport A/S 3+ with a 245/40ZR19 98Y XL. Factory Tires in 19 were 96Y. (or 1565 lbs to 1653 lbs per tire). There are various tire comparison tools on line looks like the difference will be negligible in speedometer readings but should help with pothole protection.

fazman | 6 April 2020

OP, contact this shop in the North East to have your rims fixed and powder coated:

Stop driving on nice rims in the winter, wait till May/June once the roads have been fixed to use the 20” rims. For the winter months (Dec-Apr) get a truck or a beater ride with steel rims.

fazman | 6 April 2020

NY/NJ has some of the worst maintained roads in the world. I have been to many 3rd world countries with better roads. Don’t drive your nice car in the winter, no one does in the North East.