Auto Pilot hands on steering wheel

Auto Pilot hands on steering wheel

I have been using the auto pilot (AP) quite a bit and really like it now that I am use to how it operates even in heavier traffic on freeways. My question is relates to when the AP thinks I don't have my hands on the wheel. I have seen video's where people squeeze at 3 and 9 o'clock some hands on the lower part of the steering wheel and so forth, but what is the best way to keep the car from not warning me all the time? I have tried various placements on the wheel but seems random for me anyway. Do I need to not squeeze the wheel but rather put a little force on the wheel without putting too much force for AP to disengage?

jimglas | April 15, 2019

Squeeze doesn't do anything. Slight torque on the wheel will stop the nags. When I do get a nag I usually move one of the scroll wheels one click. That satisfies the nag also.

alisse | April 15, 2019

It's not about squeezing the wheel. It needs to "feel" some turn resistance. Usually just the weight of your hand on the wheel is enough, or twiddle the scroll buttons will work too.

rachang5021 | April 15, 2019

Yes. A little force on the wheel is how to keep the warnings away.

alisse | April 15, 2019

@jimglas just beat me! :)

jimglas | April 15, 2019

; )

rdavis | April 15, 2019

It's doesn't detect you squeezing the wheel. ti's all about the torque you apply on the wheel. I just apply enough torque on the wheel so to feel what the "ap" is doing. I might move the wheel a 1/4" or less either right or left until I can feel the small corrections AP is making.

I rest my right elbow on my center arm rest and reverse grip the wheel at 5 o'clock. Left are elbow is typically on window ledge with standard grip at 9 o'clock.

you have to keep enough torque on wheel to feel what ap is doing... it takes a bit to get used to, but after a few days of practice you'll be able to do it without effort. I've made the trip from Atlanta to Tampa many times with little to no nags on EAP.

Kary993 | April 15, 2019

Thanks everyone for the advice!

RedPillSucks | April 15, 2019

You can also toggle the volume scroll wheel up and down

007bond | April 15, 2019

This is the whole reason I never purchased if I have to hold the wheel and give some force that shows I have my hands on the wheel then ah just steer myself for free....

jimglas | April 15, 2019

@007: if you get a free trial, you will see that it does a lot more than you think. It makes driving much less stressful. On the road or in stop and go traffic.

JAD | April 15, 2019

+1 jimglas, I love driving, but sitting in traffic on the freeway is not driving. I use AP about 90% of the time on the freeway and hate being in a car without it now. Lots of ways to tell the system you are there with little concentration required so long drives are much less tiring.

andrewlee05 | April 15, 2019

Tested out Navigate on Autopilot this weekend and worked like a champ for the most part. Had to drive to NJ and then drive back to NY side and my M3 was navigating better I would. When I was getting on to an on ramp to switch over to a different freeway, the car knew to stay on the left lane of the 2 right-lane on ramp since it split into 2 directions and I needed to be on the left side. If I was driving, I would've taken the right lane and would have had to switch into the left lane to head on the right direction.

It's definitely getting smarter with each update. Still waiting for advanced summon.

Kary993 | April 15, 2019

JAD - Definitely agree, much less effort and little to no stress using AP!

rdavis | April 15, 2019

@007Bond.... the drive from ATL to Tampa used to "wear me out". Now when I drive it, i'm actually refreshed when I get there. EAP has been a god send for me on that route. I can't point to why... maybe it's just the fact I can turn my head land loot around a bit while driving or actually stretch for a second or two... but it really helps out. YMMV.

Carl Thompson | April 15, 2019

I guess I'm different but for me Autosteer is more stressful, not less. The car is so easy to drive on its own and with Autosteer you need to constantly make sure it's not doing something it shouldn't. Easier just to relax and drive yourself even in the Bay Area's terrible stop and go traffic.

Rasorsmr2 | April 15, 2019


wow, going to try this later. thx

Teslanene | April 15, 2019

I requested a free trial, but how is Auto pilot really helping with the driving if you still need to have you hands on the wheel? What do you guys mean by less effort and stress?

lbowroom | April 15, 2019

The likelihood of hitting the car in front of you in traffic from a moment of distraction is close to 0. That is what I call less stressful.

Magic 8 Ball | April 15, 2019

@Teslanene Just having to not control the accelerator is good but once you get to the point where you can have your hand on the wheel and have the car move it instead of the other way around, without even thinking about it, you should get a better understanding. I will admit there are some quirks that still need working out (which is why we are beta users) but it works well enough to be worth it, IMO.

I use it all the time and it makes me feel like more of a tourist vs pilot when I want to.

Kary993 | April 15, 2019

You don't have to slow down when everyone is stopping because it does it for you. It also starts back up to speed for you. It steers the car in the lane (as long as there are well marked lines of course), you don't have worry about lane changes, tell it to change and it fits itself in there. I use this everyday going to work, no stress no effort just handles it. Can't wait for FSD some day!

JAD | April 15, 2019

The more you use AP the more you like it. The first time you take your hands off is very scary, but as you learn what the system can and can't do, you take advantage of the cans and take over before the cants get scary. After 4 years of using it, it has become very useful and the improvement in the last six months is very significant. My ap2 car is now fast ahead of my ap1 car.

Kary993 | April 16, 2019

Not that I didn't trust the advise here but tested AP by just scrolling the volume roller one click and works perfectly. Thanks again for the help all!

RedPillSucks | April 16, 2019

I tend not to use AP in normal traffic unless I have >6sec of visible road ahead because AP doesn't avoid road debris,
but I use TACC all the time.

leo33 | April 16, 2019

I've found avoiding road debris just as easy on AP because I keep one or two hands on the wheel.

SteveWin1 | April 16, 2019

"as long as there are well marked lines of course"

Actually, you don't need lines at all. There are a couple roads near me where there are lines for a little while and then they end, and there are no marking on the road at all. As long as you get AP started in an area where there ARE lines, it handles areas without lines very well. It keeps me on my side of the road, doesn't go onto the grass and doesn't get into the oncoming traffic's side at all. It doesn't complain or warn me to take over. I definitely keep both hands on the wheel and I'm ready to take over at any time. It does seems a little more jittery about the exact spot its supposed to be at on the road, but it still does a great job and I've never actually had to take over even with oncoming traffic passing me.

Kary993 | April 16, 2019

SteveWin1 - One case in point that I find, and it works about 75% of the time, is when in the slow lane on a freeway, in AP, approaching an on ramp the right hand line disappears and of course the lane gets super wide for the on ramp lane. about 75% of the time, when the line disappears the car holds course pretty well, maybe just moves slightly right which gets my attention. The other times it starts moving right and hunts side to side and when it sees a car coming on from the on ramp then it abruptly hits the brakes as it thinks it is too close even though the car isn't quite on the freeway yet. At that point the car is pretty much lost and I just take over before someone rear ends me.

Another, which was the video I saw in northern California where the guy was in the fast lane where there was construction and K rails on the left center with no lines (covered by K rails) and the Model S hit the K rail (more of a glancing hit). I have come dangerously close myself in AP when construction zones cover the line on one side.

So given those cases I am not sure how you can say it doesn't need lines?

derotam | April 16, 2019

Carl...yes, you are...different... :)

I do disagree with your statement that "with Autosteer you need to constantly make sure it's not doing something it shouldn't. " That feels like "I feel as though my body breathing on it's own is so much more stressful...I have to constantly make sure it doesn't stop" You have to pay attention enough so that you are prepared to take over if it makes a mistake, but I don't agree that you have to actively keep track of every minor adjustment the car makes say going down even a "straight" road.

radwansk | April 16, 2019

I've found with my arm on the armrest, my land laying on the bottom of the steering wheel, provides enough force to not hear from the nanny. I only picked up my car on Thursday last week. I initially engaged AP only briefly. I reengaged it once I got on straight and less busy section of freeway. (I'm new to this) My final thought was, "I can't wait to try this on Monday morning rushhour on the DC Beltway." Yesterday morning I used it for about 95% of the journey. It was magical. It removes 99% of the irritation from the worst part of commuting and I love it.

Teslanene | April 16, 2019

Are you guys using Navigation on Autopilot or just standard AP?

RES IPSA | April 16, 2019

I think I read somewhere that "hands free" autosteer could be the new normal by the end of 2019. We may find out more this Monday

RES IPSA | April 16, 2019

I bought AP and FSD last month not for what it can do now (which is kinda worth the 5k to me) but for what features will come available over the next 2-3 years.

RES IPSA | April 16, 2019

Anyone notice that sometimes the car will slow down when it should be slightly speeding up to change lanes when you activate the turn indicator with autosteer on (not with Nav on AP on)

Kary993 | April 16, 2019

RES IPSA, yes I had that before but I change the lane change setting to Mad Max and it works much better.

RES IPSA | April 16, 2019

Mad Max?? I have a LR RWD. Is Mad Max only available on the P? I have the setting to 1 car length (the lowest setting)

Kary993 | April 16, 2019

not sure but my car is a P

RES IPSA | April 16, 2019

I found the Mad Max setting, but it is under Nav on AP. I do not use Nav on AP much.

walnotr | April 16, 2019

Mad max is available in the LR RWD. Look in the autopilot menu - navigate on autopilot

CASEMAN | April 16, 2019

I had no plan to ever have EAP. I didn't buy it with the car - then I got the free trial and got hooked! I bought EAP and FSD too! I recommend it to any and all. It's amazing and getting better and better!

Thanks for the tip on the scroll wheel for the nags.