Automatic wipers not working very well. Is this normal.

Automatic wipers not working very well. Is this normal.

It finally started raining in the NW and my automatic wipers suck.

They don't come on when they should and they let the windshield get covered with rain.

Has anyone else had a problem with their automatic wipers?

Is this just normal (they suck on my wife's P85)?


andre | 01/10/2018

I'd like the auto-sensing to be a little more sensitive than it is. I think it lets a little too much rain accumulate on the window before activating.

derotam | 01/10/2018

I believe the auto sensing function is a beta feature. Mine aren't that great either. Tesla is probably still tweaking the feature.

rpc_in_va | 01/10/2018

This has been a common complaint. Tesla has been refining the software. It got much better in release 32.x, and even a bit better in 36.2 (current s/w on my M3). Still not perfect, but fairly usable now. What s(w release do your u have?

Liferules | 01/10/2018

Agree with OP, now very good, sometimes sensitive and at other times, wait way too long to wipe...

Bighorn | 01/10/2018

Don’t seem to work in the dark for me.

dalesmith1962 | 01/10/2018

They work really well for me most of the time even if they do wait just a little too long to wipe. They wipe before the rain buildup is too much except in rare cases. It’s easy to tap the end of the left stalk to get a wipe if it gets too bad.

Overall, satisfactory for me, but I wouldn’t complain if it was improved.

mike | 01/10/2018

I guess I won't bug my service center for now.

If Tesla can make a car that can drive itself, you would think they could make an automatic wiper that worked as well as it does in my GM pickup that does not even have bluetooth!!

Anyone know of a way to send a complaint/suggestion on to Tesla?


andre | 01/10/2018

See the bottom of the webpage... there's a Contact link.

kyle | 01/10/2018

The auto wiping works for the most part, fogging up does not activate it and mist seams to be difficult . If it does not wipe, I put press the button on the turn signal to toggle them on to wipe once. I did have one time it was wiping at full speed when it really did not need to wipe that fast.

I have not had much rain though.

plbegin | 01/10/2018

@mike I had a similar issue where auto stopped working. I thought it was because I was manually playing with the whiper button once in a while.... so ended-up doing a "hold the 2 wheel buttons reset" and next rain they seemed ok again. You might want to try that?

I'm often on the highway on Autopilot so o actually find that they whipe too often. They should really have Auto - Low and Auto - High options... would be simple and make everyone happy with the setting they want.

M3BlueGeorgia | 01/10/2018

In light rain or drizzle, I sometimes have to get the wipe started by a quick tap on the button on the turn signal.

Cdotpeterman | 01/10/2018

Flip side of the problem for me. My wipers activate randomly on sunny southern California days. Maybe (like me) they wish it would rain once in a while.....?

-TheJohn- | 01/10/2018

Make sure they're set to the correct setting.
I had similar complaints but then looked and saw that auto was turned off and it was patiently waiting for me to do the button pushing.

gwolnik | 01/10/2018

My wipers sometimes come on when I back out of the garage and sunlight hits the windshield! One time, I had a hard time getting it to turn off. It was bone dry and just scraping the dust back and forth.

jwins | 01/10/2018

Had my first experience with this today. The rain was light, but present enough to be a distraction when left to accumulate. I did the one-time wipe via the left stalk several times, plus manually selected an intermittent level as well. With auto wipers selected, only twice did they come on, and the first time was an explosion of wipes until the windshield was CLEAN. Weird.

spuzzz123 | 02/10/2018

It’s the only complaint I have. No paint drips, panel gaps, phantom touches, vampire drain, screen blackout, delivery delays, EA-ping pong, high beam strobe, glove box and windows opening, moon roof crack, phone-key fails, nor loss of power. But my auto sense wipers suck. Very pleased for that to be my only complaint

Iwantmy3 | 02/10/2018

It has been raining here for the last two days. I have tried the auto wipers several times until it just felt dangerous. I have now resorted to manual wiping. Unfortunately, the wiper screen closes constantly, so manual wiping is a pain when the rain is inconsistent.

I agree with spuzzz, This is my biggest complaint right now.

I have the latest software. I even tried resetting the computer this morning. The auto mode is hit or miss. It is not useful or dependable.

billtphotoman | 02/10/2018

Add me to the list of people who don't find the wipers sensitive enough, especially in light to moderate rain.

Ygor81 | 02/10/2018

I have noticed that fine mist type water particles tend to not set it off as well as large drops. So if misting is a common thing where you live, that could be the issue. It is particularly noticeable when driving on wet roads after a rain, when the lower part of the windshield gets covered in a fine water mist, not covering the sensor located up behind the rear view mirror.

The feature is not perfect, but it works really well for the most part imo. It is easy to push the button for a single wipe in the situations described above.

jithesh | 02/10/2018

The day I picked up the car I got all the scenarios light > moderate > heavy rain on my way back. But the wipers came on automatically and worked perfectly. I was so happy to experience that, I felt it was better than manual wiper.
But after I have noticed that sometimes it works great but other times it doesn't. So I just go to manual when it doesn't works with my expectation.

I think Auto mode is still good, I just wish there was an option to increase/decrease the speed using voice control. Hopefully their v10 update will have big improvements on voice control.

EvrGrn | 02/10/2018

Just came home from road trip through various levels of rain on mountain highways. Wipers are officially my biggest gripe about an otherwise phenomenal car. Sometimes Auto came on appropriately, other times I'd wait until the windshield was covered before giving up and just hitting the left stalk button. Technology that works most of the time = technology that doesn't work, IMO. In addition, I wish there was a setting between 2 and 3. For moderate rain with some spray from other vehicles, 2 felt consistently too slow and 3 too fast. And having the interface go away automatically after a stalk tap means constant distractions to look down at the screen. It's just not good! How about this: You tap the stalk to activate the interface, and while the interface is active, the left thumb wheel adjusts the wiper speed. I think I'd love that!

Future_owner | 02/10/2018

Yeah auto wiper function is a bit wonky in light rain but as others have said, just tap the left stalk button quickly once to get a manual wipe. Barely registers on my "problem" radar. On the other hand, the auto high beams for the lights function is even worse IMO. Maybe it works better on back country roads where the only light might be form an oncoming car but anywhere else it seems to trigger randomly on/off way too much and not off soon enough for oncoming cars.

RedPillSucks | 02/10/2018

@mike Note that Tesla doesn't have a dedicated rain sensor. They're using the camera software to detect rain and work the auto wipers. Presumably a cost saving issue, though I can't imagine that rain sensing hardware actually costs that much. However, this is why the auto wipers are not as good as other car manufacturers.

spuzzz123 | 02/10/2018

Hmmm a camera? The one on the front of the rear view mirror? Wonder if I should try cleaning it? I can imagine that it would be difficult to train a computer to recognize raindrops versus say nightfall or fog.

eeb9 | 02/10/2018

The auto-wipers and auto-Highbeam are the things that bug me on a day-to-day basis.

That said, the auto-wipers *are* getting better over time.

That auto-highbeam setting drove me sufficiently crazy that I just don't bother. High beams coming on too soon or staying on too long create a headache not just for me but for other drivers - so scratch those until they get them *really* right

Daryl | 02/10/2018

The auto-wipers with 2018.36.2 work very well for me in terms of detecting an appropriate speed, but I have a problem with the wiper blades chattering. If I choose a manual speed faster or slower than the auto speed, they seem to work fine.
It's almost like very wet or very dry and the blades wipe smooth, but just where auto wipe comes on causes the chatter.

jerrykham | 02/10/2018

As @Bighorn says they don't work well in the dark and often only kick in as you drive by some lights. @Mike your old truck had a dedicated sensor for auto wipers. Tesla decided to do it with only optics (a lot of hubris in that decision) - which was really a bad decision. It will sometimes furiously try to wipe water spots off when the sun angle is just right. When the lighting is right and the rain is the right amount they work great. Outside of a pretty narrow range of conditions they aren't so good.

timurx | 01/12/2018

Unfortunately it is a nuisance in PDX where it rains 8 months of the year. Really like to see the AI evolve/adapt for this neck of the woods.
In the meantime, how about a software update:
Double press wiper button on stock and it could cycle thru the speeds- that would help keep my eyes on the road.

timurx | 01/12/2018

Unfortunately it is a nuisance in PDX where it rains 8 months of the year. Really like to see the AI evolve/adapt for this neck of the woods.
In the meantime, how about a software update:
Double press wiper button on stock and it could cycle thru the speeds- that would help keep my eyes on the road.

lars.sikes | 02/01/2019

The 2018 Model S version of autowipers operation is very, very, poor. Out 2016 Model S operated flawlessly This is not what one would expect in a "newer" improved model. Ditto with the auto headlights when approaching a car from the rear.

82bert | 02/01/2019

Didn’t Elon suggest recently that how the auto wipers now work relies on some sort of neural net and an update will be coming? Stated it should work better than ever eventually. I’m guessing this is why newer S feels worse as well.

ivo.rutten | 05/01/2019

It just does not work at all, in neither of the to two 'sensitivity' positions on my brand new 2018 S. Very hard can this be, my 1998 Peugeot had this feature and it worked and still works perfectly. nstead of wasting their time on silly farting apps one would appreciate they get the basics right.

alexandro.coscia | 17/03/2019

Guys, same Problem on my Model 3 Performance.... it seems to go to slow on Auto Mode.... any idea on Model 3 Owners? Is it just on my car?

mike | 17/03/2019

It sucks in my 3P and Model S.

Maybe if enough of us complain, Tesla will fix it by adding different speeds for the auto wipers.

TM3Q | 17/03/2019

I simply don't use the auto wiper mode wich sucks right now. I only use the push button and the preset speed when needed but most of the time the push button!

hector | 17/03/2019

Anti spam bump...

hector | 17/03/2019

Anti spam bump...

lars.helge.flolo | 08/05/2019

I am loosing patience with auto wipers still not working two years after I bought this fabulous car TMS. It is far too insensitive. Why on earth are they not fixing it and with various sensitivity levels?

florian.reinke | 09/05/2019

I completely agree. The easiest fix IMO would be to give the Auto wiper feature a modifier (like level 1-2-3) for wiping frequency. Light rain will not make it start, and while single wipe is just a button press, it's kind of annoying that the car will drive and navigate itself but is unable to control the wipers.

82bert | 09/05/2019

I’m truly bummed for you guys. I wonder why some like myself are seeing vast improvements while others are not. Either way, I hope it catches up to your your 3s!

Best I can say is that it’s improving and should be coming to you soon enough.

wiboater4 | 09/05/2019

I drove 45 miles in the rain yesterday. Some of it was pouring and some lighter rain. The wipers on my model 3 worked fine.

Mr. Spacely | 09/05/2019

My wipers worked perfectly in varying rain conditions yesterday...

Jtwo | 09/05/2019

I live in the PNW myself and find the auto wipers to be underwhelming as well.

sl7vk | 09/05/2019

How do the auto wipers work? Is it the cameras pointing out the front that identify moisture?
Yesterday was another tremendous fail for auto wipers and I'm on 12.1.2

jimglas | 09/05/2019

I drove thru light rain to downpour yesterday, surface streets and interstate. Auto wipers worked perfectly in all conditions. 2019.12.1.2

Mr. Spacely | 09/05/2019

I'm on 2019.12.1.2 as well...

NEKEV | 09/05/2019

Stopped using them after a couple tries early on. They took too long to come on and then went too fast. Hasn't rained since I got the 12.1.2 upgrade yesterday (was on 2019.5.15 previously). Will give them another try to see if they have improved.

dls2000 | 12/09/2019

Rain season started and came across this fix. I tried it and now the auto wipers are working perfectly. I guess have to reapply once the beading is worn.

hardeep.2.singh | 25/09/2019

Same issue! Still persists in the latest v9 sw , any fix coming from TMS soon?

RedShift | 25/09/2019

Exactly. Take too long, and work WAY TOO DAMN FAST. I’ve switched to manual mode.

What the hell man? After a few software updates, the wipers have gone back to their bad habits.

Tesla should really look at the engineers who have worked on this feature. Seriously now.