Is this normal? Door clicking and trim bulge

Is this normal? Door clicking and trim bulge

Wondering if others have the same issue and I’m just being picky: My driver’s side door makes clicking sounds as I open and close it. Been happening since I got the car last December. Took it to my SC and they replaced a hinge, but the sound is back. Not as bad but still there. Video at:

The video also highlights a bulge on the door’s trim.

Anyone else have this and just think it’s normal? Should I make a service appointment or just live with it? Will ask for mobile service so I don’t interfere with more serious repairs from other owners.

Thanks in advance for any insight!

crmedved | April 10, 2019

I don't think the clicking is normal.... that would bug me too and I've never noticed my car doing that. Not sure about the trim bulge.

82bert | April 10, 2019

Click is definitely annoying. Seems they should be able to fix it.

Trim bulge is not entirely unusual and wouldn’t bother me. I’m not an expert, but it shouldn’t cause any sort of issue. If it bugs you enough, not unreasonable to ask SC in my opinion.

M3phan | April 10, 2019

That noise isn’t normal. Something needs to be remedied there for sure. The bulge is “normal” for M3s, sorta. I have a couple odd little bulges like that but in different places. When I took it in to the SC they compared to other M3s, and it seems to be present in the trim of many M3s, in various odd places. Most times these shouldn’t affect car quality. I’d only be slightly concerned if it was gapped to the point of admitting moisture behind something but my bulges don’t gap, I saw it on others, so I left it alone. Hasn’t caused any issues whatsoever.

M3phan | April 10, 2019

@82bert: ha! SImul-post!

Carl Thompson | April 10, 2019

Tesla has told me that trim bulges are normal and not something that can be fixed. The trim on my A-pillars bulges in an unsightly fashion particularly on the driver's side.

vmulla | April 10, 2019

Damn!!! It's been a year already.

meni | April 10, 2019

Yeah I’ll let go of the trim bulge. Anyone else have an opinion on the door clicking? Appreciate all the responses.

Bighorn | April 10, 2019

How did they address it the first time--just the hinge? Sounds like a lubrication issue perhaps? Can you localize it?

Magic 8 Ball | April 10, 2019

Yup you will have to do a better job of localizing it to figure it out. Here's what you do. Take a paper towel tube or such and hold one end to your ear. Have someone open and close the door slowly while you use the tube as a sort of stethoscope. move the the end of your "stethoscope" around while the door is opening and closing and your should be able to pinpoint the source that way.

Blacklamb | April 10, 2019

My service center told me unfortunately the bulge is something they see but they would suggest not fixing it as replacing it could increase the chance of leaks and wind noise. That if I notice any of them from where the bulges are they would replace it or if they even needed to do anything else with the trim of the car. They did put a note in on the service request so they would cover it if needed at a later date.

meni | April 10, 2019

@Bighorn already tried oil for the door click before bringing it in. Didn't work. SC confirmed lubricating wouldn't fix it. Agreed the clicking was an issue and replaced the main center hinge. Clicking was reduced but gradually returned.

walnotr | April 10, 2019

Sounds to me like hinge pins not lined up properly. If the center lines are misaligned you will hear a clicking sound as one goes over center.

meni | April 10, 2019

@walnotr interesting. Thanks for that. So far everyone here except the trolls agree that this noise is abnormal. Will def take it in for service.

coleAK | April 10, 2019

My door seals are bulging in places the same way. Service said that is normal. As for the clicking have you tried WD40 on the hinges? My Audi allroad would make almost the exact same noise. WD40 made it go away.

meni | April 10, 2019

@coleAK, Yes the first thing I did was exactly that - I put WD40 on the hinges. It did nothing. Service confirmed that won’t fix the noises, and instead needed a parts replacement. After the service, 3 out of the 4 clicks were gone, but they gradually all started coming back.

kcheng | April 10, 2019

Hinge is definitely clicking. Not normal. The roller pin is hitting something. I have a similar bulge on my B-pillar.

meni | April 11, 2019

@kcheng thanks for the reply. It’s becoming clear that my door clicks are an anomaly.

lilbean | April 11, 2019

Do you hear the dash creaking?

meni | April 11, 2019

@lilbean yes the dash creaks on rough roads about half the time. Loud and annoying. But I didn’t want to bother service for that because it’s hard to reproduce. There’s also a loose part rattling in the trunk. Also intermittent. So not reporting that either. Lots of small issues - surprising for such a high VIN.

Carl Thompson | April 11, 2019

I know the feeling. I've had no fewer then 11 assorted rattles and creaks in my early 3 (the number keeps going up). Almost all have been fixed but still...

Goodman.Larry | April 11, 2019

I had a bulge on my driver side front pillar which I noted when I was checking the car out at purchase a year ago. Brought it to their attention. After some initial confusion they took care of it when I was at the service center for another issue. I’d bring it up with another rep. Problem was taken care of no later than last summer. Love the car.

Carl Thompson | April 11, 2019


Good to know. I'll try again with mine next time I take the car in for service.

meni | April 11, 2019

@Goodman.Larry interesting. I'll bring up the trim bulges (there quite are a few), just in case the SC thinks it's a legit reparable item, but'll let it go if deemed not.

samsmithucsb | May 11, 2020

i just bought a used '18 M3 with 8,500 miles and noticed the doors creak, wind noise from the driver side window area, and charge port doesn't close completely. tesla told me these are not warranty issues and that it would be $195 to diagnose. that sounds crazy to me. anyone else have this experience? what did you pay for diagnosis/fix?

M3phan | May 11, 2020

First things first: Congrats on the car! Hope you’re enjoying it! Next, yes, that’s about what they charge to diagnose rattles and squeaks because some are legit and some are not. Some may be covered by warrantee or goodwill, some may not.

M3phan | May 11, 2020

I’d that a trim bulge or is your Tesla just happy to see me?

M3phan | May 11, 2020

I’d -Is