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Does Pano roof sense rain and close?

Does Pano roof sense rain and close?

A big fear is that I will leave the roof open, and it will start to rain. It can be a beautiful, sunny day, and all of a sudden it will start raining, literally, out of the blue. I'm nervous that I will run into a store and leave the roof open and then it will rain, soaking the 17" monitor, say nothing of the leather seats, etc. I know that the windshield wipers sense rain; has anyone heard anything about the roof closing itself? How much of a concern is it to have the screen get "sprinkled?"

foto | July 20, 2012

I think its more of a nervous concern if you leave your roof open while you run into a store. Just curious to know if you'll leave you doors unlocked too?

bsimoes | July 20, 2012

Nope, just the roof! At home, in the driveway, I never lock my car. I guess I might have to start now that the 17" screen might seem "portable" to some idiots! I don't keep valuables in the car: ice scrapers (winter gear) and cheap sunglasses are about the extent!

Volker.Berlin | July 20, 2012

bsimoes +1

That seems a very obvious, natural feature for the Model S. I'd definitely appreciate it as well, and I wouldn't be surprised if it actually does come standard already.

And yes, I, too, leave the car doors unlocked occasionally, as long as the keys are with me so nobody can just hop in and drive off.

Vawlkus | July 20, 2012

I'd be dubious about this being available, although if any car was going to offer this feature, it'd be an 'always on' BEV like the Model S.

Teoatawki | July 20, 2012

At least if you notice while in the store, you should be able to close it from your smartphone.

MandL | July 20, 2012

Many cars these days tout "rain-sensing wipers" though I'm not sure what that technology really is. My skylights at home have rain sensors on them. Certainly seems doable.

brianman | July 20, 2012

Hopefully the SDK will allow for this....

function OnEvent(...)
{
...
case WipersTurnedOn:
...
EnsureRoofClosed();
...
...
}

jrabena | July 20, 2012

bsimoes, go into your nearest Tesla store, sit in the car and open the roof. Then have someone pour water all over the roof to see what happens. Let us know how it turns out.

Volker.Berlin | July 20, 2012

brianman, that won't work for the use case at hand: The wipers won't turn on when the car is parked and the keys are removed, no matter how heavy the rain! ;-)

bsimoes | July 20, 2012

jrabena@sughrue.com, you gave me a good chuckle!

brianman | July 20, 2012

@Volker - Details. You get the spirit of it. ;)

case RainDetected:

olanmills | July 21, 2012

"Does Pano roof sense rain and close?"

I dunno, but the driver surely will!

cosmomusic | July 21, 2012

If the driver doesn't realize its about to rain, he should not be driving a car with a pano, moon roof or convertible... :)

MikAo | July 22, 2012

Does the roof close when it senses bird shit approaching? I want that mode! Hopefully in 2.0, it's a dealbreaker for me.

Or can it autoconnect the the local weather station's radar to close 2 minutes before the rain?

Folks, get real. Using brains is voluntary.

vouteb | July 22, 2012

Agree with Mika: Time to close thread(not the roof)

Volker.Berlin | July 22, 2012

Folks, get real. Using brains is voluntary. (Mika)

I don't feel that's an appropriate comment. The sensors are there, the roof is moved electrically via software. Of course it should close automatically when rain is sensed! On a hot day, wouldn't you prefer to let the heat escape through the (partly) open sun roof while parking, knowing that it will close automatically when the weather changes? It's not magic, it basically comes for free with what the car already has.

brianman | July 22, 2012

"It's not magic, it basically comes for free with what the car already has."

I take issue with the characterization of software as free.

The closest it will be to free is when the Terminators take over and start writing it, and I think most would argue that's not really free.

Volker.Berlin | July 22, 2012

brianman, agreed. My point was that I take issue with the way Mika characterizes the idea as something that is extraordinarily far-fetched and unnecessary for anybody using their brains.

I wonder why people want things like adaptive cruise control... you don't need it if you use your brains and your right foot, do you?

Actually, the automatically closing sunroof would be useful even while driving, even if the driver is sensing the rain (as olanmills remarked). Why would people want automatic wipers? They can easily flick them on manually, because they do see the rain on the windscreen, don't they?

nhurst | July 22, 2012

As we said of BMWs, "The sensor doesn't close the roof, it turns off the rain".

bsimoes | July 22, 2012

Volker.Berlin--thank you. I am becoming quite disgusted with some of the people and their rudeness on this forum. The personal attacks are over the line. It reflects badly on Tesla, and it reflects badly on you, if you're one of the ones that finds it necessary to belittle others. I guess you are either very young or very rich and don't believe that character matters; it does.

Alex K | July 22, 2012

It would also be nice if the windows are closed when rain is sensed (assuming that they are controllable through software). Of course, we can carry this out a little further and have the pano roof and the windows reopen after the rain has subsided....

Timo | July 22, 2012

Automatically closing roof is also safety feature: one less distraction for driver to do while driving.

Brian H | July 22, 2012

Alex K;
Interesting idea! Suggests a somewhat amusing spectacle of someone teasing the car with a hose, though ..

>;)

Robert22 | July 22, 2012

While they're modifying the roof for precipitation detection, how about a sensor/ heating element in the windshield and rear window that senses ice accumulation resulting in an auto- defrost mode. I would prefer to never touch the car with an ice scraper and could easily dislodge sheets of ice with a gloved hand.

Not a likely problem for you Texans, but a common issue here in New England.

MikAo | July 23, 2012

No useless gimmicks for S-model, costing time and money for everyone. My personal favorites are windmill, pericope, diesel trunk generator, social mode WLAN connectivity to other drivers, sabath mode, inventer to charge other EV's etc. Plus many, many others.

Get real and Tesla, get me a proper working car without recalls. And door side pockets, I have not seen a car in decades without ones. "Big fear", not.

And in my Espace same sized panoroof takes 12 second to close, sudden shower and screen it wet and Tesla sued for non-operating autorainsensingpanoroof.

Volker.Berlin | July 23, 2012

No useless gimmicks for S-model, costing time and money for everyone. (Mika)

The term "useless gimmick" seems to be up to everybody's subjective definition. It is easy to come up with a plausible definition of that term by which the Model S already has a lot of "useless gimmicks".

There seems to be consensus at Tesla as well as in these forums that while the Roadster was pretty much a "no frills, just thrills" car, the Model S from its inception was intended to offer most of the whistles and bells (aka "useless gimmicks") that drivers of sedans in its price range have gotten used to. And then some, which are only enabled by the fact that the Model S is a BEV and has a 17" touch screen.

Mika, I'm curious as to why you, specifically, consider the Model S and not the Roadster. The latter has more performance and less frills, and based on your recent statements I'd guess you'd be rather happy with it. Maybe the Model S is actually targeting a slightly different audience...?

Volker.Berlin | July 23, 2012

Mika, maybe you should apply your "no useless gimmicks" approach to this thread:
http://www.teslamotors.com/forum/forums/what-other-features-would-you-wa...

There are quite a few suggestions over there regarding which I would immediately chime in on your tune. IMO, the automatically closing sunroof seems to be more useful and less expensive then many of the suggestions in that thread.

MikAo | July 23, 2012

VB, Roadster on not good to drive, too top heavy. And I need seats, sports car I already have. Concidered Roadster until testdrove it. In that price range I see lot of better cars, although ICE's.

In that tread are some marvelous ideas, LOL. Some seriously propose things only 1-2 persons might concider using, even less buying. In for example "inverter to charge other EV's" would be included, that will make changes to all production car wirings, PEM etc, most likely. ie. increase costs for everybody. Or the best of all, windmill to generate electricity, roof structure would be different ;-)

Tesla is startup company and should concentrate on essentials, not ot waste money on gimmicks which does not generate positive cashflow. Nearly everything can be done, but everything is not worth doing.

davecolene0606 | July 23, 2012

Interesting discourse, but back to the roof closing. It would be nice to have it close a little quicker, and, what kewl idea to have the car close it's windows/roof in rain. In Florida and I'm sure many other locales, we experience showery weather. By that, I mean bright sunshine a few puffy cumulus clouds, you walk into store or the house for a few minutes and whammo! deluge of rain. Again, since the sensor is there and since virtually everything in this car appears to be accessible by software solutions, it certainly seems as though this would be a very realistic future " software" upgrade in S2.0. Not free ( annual maintenance fee) and quite practical for a large number of folks living nearer to the equator.

That being said I wouldn't want to see the initial quality goal affected by such an effort. It is of utmost most importance that the vehicle be bullet proof in quality terms or the failure of the enterprise will follow close at hand ( along with my stock) and those damn short guys will have burned it up yet one more time! :) ( insert Randy Newman, short people song here)

Volker.Berlin | July 23, 2012

Mika, thanks. I don't see the automatically closing sunroof in the same league as an integrated roof windmill... But that's probably subjective. Let's just say we agree to differ in this case.

Tesla is probably taking some inspiration from the forums, but they will eventually do what they determine is best -- by their own standards. So, we should let them do their jobs, and I for one trust in Tesla that the result will be well-balanced. I'll buy it whether or not the roof closes automatically.

Brian H | July 23, 2012

I think Elon is very much on board with the "car without recalls" concept! :) From what I can see, his inclination is/was to overbuild -- the famous engineering concept of margin of error/safety margin -- rather than accept "barely good enough". He also has a horror of the thought of floods of (any?) negative customer reports/failure reports once the cars hit the road.

There's obviously a cost limit to what can be done, but if the load-bearing (before crushing) of the MS at 8X its own weight is any indication, many such costs have been accommodated.

Timo | July 23, 2012

I don't see "inverter to charge other cars" as thing that only few people would use. Getting out standard 230V (110V for you Americans) or even three-phase would be very easy and cheap addition, and it would allow using cars as emergency source of electricity in blackouts. Kind of very large UPS for home users. It would also allow a lot more than just charge other cars, basically any home appliance that uses electricity could be used with that. IMO that should be required by law for BEV:s, it would be like having jump cables in an ICE. You could help any future BEV stranded in the street with that.

That kind of extra gizmos allowed by having large battery in BEV is what would make BEV really different from ICE, and I would like to have them all in the car as long as they are not extremely expensive. Something like automatically closing roof in rain is just tiny detail, requires couple of sensors and that's all, everything else is already there, even software to close the roof. Probably costs about same as extra USB ports, which is just couple of cents/car.

jkirkebo | July 23, 2012

Yeah, I'd easily pay atleast $1000 extra for a 230V 16A inverter-driven outlet in the car. That would power my freezer, fridge, TV and some lights for at least 3 days in a power outage. It would also be useful as a power source for power tools where no grid power exists.

Teoatawki | July 23, 2012

Be nice to use the battery for backup power during power outage. However, I don't want to set the precedent of running power tools off grid from MY car. I'm afraid that would lead to my car being used as a truck. Totally don't want that to happen.

stephen.pace | July 23, 2012

@Teoatawki: I'd like at least a 110v in the cabin to charge a laptop, but I get your drift. If you want to run power tools, you should get one of these:

http://www.viamotors.com/

You can get external inverters on the outside of the vehicle to run welders, compressors, etc.

Brian H | July 23, 2012

Yes, for emergency use with appliances, etc., 10 or 20 or 50 or 70 kwh is a pretty decent amount of energy, not to be sneezed at!

jerry3 | July 23, 2012

Robert: Not a likely problem for you Texans, but a common issue here in New England.

Actually, I carry an ice scraper. Although it's infrequently used, when there is ice here it's 3-5 mm all over the car. No way you are going to be driving without scraping the ice off.

Robert22 | July 29, 2012

True, but if you heat the windows, the layer of ice closest to the glass will melt resulting in an ice floe that can easily be slid off the windshield and other windows by hand.

jerry3 | July 29, 2012

That's true if you wait half an hour for the warming to take place (okay, maybe 20 minutes). Leaving for work is time sensitive--especially because on those days I drive Denise to her job as well.

Teoatawki | July 29, 2012

That's why you use the smartphone app to tell your car to warm up in advance so it is ready to go when you are.

jerry3 | July 29, 2012

But doesn't that waste a lot of energy for no real good reason?

jerry3 | July 29, 2012

And you don't know that the car is covered with ice until you actually go out and look.

Brian H | July 29, 2012

Heated windows are not the same as heated car. The energy required if there's no ice is trivial. If there is ice, it's well spent. Heated windows is the way to go.

Teoatawki | July 29, 2012

I don't know. Does it waste energy? You were going to run the heater to make the car comfortable anyway, so why not let it run before you want to get in so you don't have to start driving a freezing cold car and start stripping hat, gloves and layers enroute? But if you have the car plugged in, you're not consuming range from the battery for the warmup.

jerry3 | July 29, 2012

-- Does it waste energy?

In my opinion, and the readings from the average mpg, it does.

-- You were going to run the heater to make the car comfortable anyway

When the car is running the engine, waste heat is always produced because the gas engine is typically between 34% and 38% efficient (in the Prius) and about 20% efficient in an old fashioned car. This waste heat might as well be used to heat the cabin. Running the car's engine without moving is a waste.

Brian H | July 29, 2012

jerry3;
None of that is relevant to an engine-less Model S, especially plugged in waiting for you to get in and use it. Of course, the only time ice is likely to accumulate is when parked outside, which suggests not-plugged in. However, it doesn't take much to warm the cabin. I imagine 1 kwh would be plenty, including de-icing windows (assuming they are heated directly, not just by contact with warm air inside the cabin).

To get an idea of 1kwh worth of heat, imagine a range hotplate red hot for 40-60 minutes.

jerry3 | July 29, 2012

Brian,

Yes, I agree that it doesn't have anything to do with an EV, and that when the EV is plugged in (which should be most of the time spent at home, there isn't likely to be much if any ice buildup (assuming things work the way I think they will anyway).