Forums

Model 3 refused to move with 48 miles on battery.

Model 3 refused to move with 48 miles on battery.

I recently made my first road trip (670 miles) in my one-month-old Model 3 (Dual Motor). When I arrived at my destination, I pulled into my sister's garage with 49 miles left in my battery. The screen displayed a message stating “Battery low. There will be significantly less energy available if the battery gets colder. We recommend charging now.” (It was 40 degrees outside.) The outlet was on the other side of the garage, so we decided to have dinner and switch the cars afterward.

When I returned two hours later, the battery still showed 48 miles remaining. It started normally, but when I put the car in reverse and pressed the accelerator, it jolted to a halt and warned that the battery was too low and to recharge immediately. The car refused to back up even though it showed 48 miles in the battery. Fortunately, I was able to run an extension cord and give it some charge overnight.

The following morning, it had charged to 90 miles, so we took a short drive. When we returned with 62 miles remaining, I was again given the same warning when I put the car in park.

Is this normal? If so, how low can you safely go before you have to worry about being stranded after making a short stop? I’d appreciate knowing if anyone else has had this happen to them.

Thank you.
Don

M-A-B-MCMLXXX | 16 février 2020

Note to potential owners: projected range in the energy consumption graph offers 6 different values, none of which have awareness of your future route. Any notion that it is typically accurate to within 5 miles is foolish; the projections can be over 100 miles apart from one another.

Lonestar10_1999 | 16 février 2020

I always strive to keep the state of charge between 20% and 80%. Its all about peace of mind, and I have never been stranded (knock wood)

stingray.don | 16 février 2020

Acceleration might be limited but I don’t know why the car wouldn’t move. There are YouTube videos of people driving the car down to 0% and then still getting a few more miles out of “the tank”. You might want to submit a service request via the app.

M3phan | 16 février 2020

It may have helped to program your car to arrive at at a higher soc and get an extra charge stop in along the way. Also a new habit to develop, better to plug your car in when not driving. (doesn’t address why it wouldn’t move; I’m commenting more on the big picture of ownership habits)

shank15217 | 16 février 2020

Take it to a service center, something is wrong, also FISH is an idiot.

teslamazing | 16 février 2020

“also FISH is an idiot.”

Eyup. Has poor decision making skills. They supposedly drive an hour to work, which would fully warm a Tesla battery, thus achieving a high kW & faster charging session vs doing all that after work with a cold battery and range anxiety. All they gotta do is maybe leave for work 30-45 min before and not have to worry one bit.

M-A-B-MCMLXXX | 16 février 2020

^ his proposed solution of renting a second home in the winter months is way more entertaining.

teslamazing | 16 février 2020

Too funny.

Seems like the life of an EV is too much to handle.

jordanrichard | 16 février 2020

When backing up, was the driver’s door open at all? Did you happen to lift your weight off the seat a bit?

hokiegir1 | 16 février 2020

+1 @jordanrichard - especially if the OP left his seatbelt off, this could explain it.

drdon19044 | 17 février 2020

Thank you for your replies. I'm sure I was fully seated with the door closed. I can't say for sure whether I fastened my seat belt, but I have moved the car short distances before without buckling in. The error message that came up on the screen definitely said that the battery was too low and to charge immediately, though. I did contact Tesla chat. The rep said he could not find any sign of an error in their data and could only recommend that if it occurs again, I should take a picture of the message and contact them again.

Bighorn | 17 février 2020

That’s a normal message with low SOC when it’s cold out. Has nothing to do with whatever you’re describing.

rxlawdude | 17 février 2020

This sure sounds like one battery module might be faulty.

TeslaTap.com | 17 février 2020

This is normal and will be true of most (all?) EVs. Lithium-ion cells have more usable energy when warm. In the cold, the battery uses it's own power to warm itself so that it has the full amount of energy. When you get to low SOC values, and you let the battery get cold, it no longer has enough energy to warm itself and get that remaining range.

More details here: https://teslatap.com/articles/range-university/ under Low State of Charge Issues.

rxlawdude | 17 février 2020

@Ttap, he states that the car won't move with 48 miles estimated range. Your explanation would have him seeing some low (0?) miles after cold soaking.

Sounds abnormal.

FISHEV | 17 février 2020

"When I returned two hours later, the battery still showed 48 miles remaining. It started normally, but when I put the car in reverse and pressed the accelerator, it jolted to a halt and warned that the battery was too low and to recharge immediately."

Should not have done any of that with 15% battery and 40+ miles showing. Likely the battery has issues and doesn't really have the 15% it says or the controls are faulty and not properly registering the 15% of battery.

Try running it down to 15% again and see what happens. Be near a super charger when you do it.

When it happened (if it happens again) call Tesla Road Service number (the one that shows up with tap the white Tesla T) and report it. They can look at the car in real time and see what is wrong.

sixstring09 | 17 février 2020

I think your vehicle should be looked at while at the service center.

This shouldn't be happening.

dvargo71 | 23 février 2020

no way that is ok. noway cold would cause that. not even 0 degrees.

Atoms | 23 février 2020

Make a service appointment. Maybe there is a high resistance connection causing the voltage to the controller drop below a safety set point.

jjgunn | 23 février 2020

Yup. Service appointment as others have stated. 48 miles is low but I've had both my Tesla's into the 20 mile range. Without this issue.

As @Lonestar stated, try & keep your battery between 20% - 80% if at all possible.

M-A-B-MCMLXXX | 23 février 2020

Neither 10% nor 85% are rates.

The tesla FAQ states:

“For regular use, we recommend keeping your car set within the 'Daily' range bracket, up to approximately 90%. Charging up to 100% is best saved for when you are preparing for a longer trip.”

Joshan | 23 février 2020

As sual fish with the false infos..

Fish is a known troll with an anti-tesla agenda/ Ignore his advice if you prefer truth.

M-A-B-MCMLXXX | 23 février 2020

“ If you own a Model 3 you will notice that when actually charging, the Tesla sets the basic daily max rate at 85%”

What are you smoking? Max rate is dependent upon the charging infrastructure.

M-A-B-MCMLXXX | 23 février 2020

“ the topic is per cent of charge not rate of charge.”

I am aware of that. Why oh why did you mention rate twice?

“ For max per cent of charge, the car is set at 85% being the basic max day charge as seen on every Model 3 when Charging”

Yours might be. Everyone can set their own limits. Sometimes if one plugs into high use supercharger it will reduce the limit, but the driver can always override it.

M-A-B-MCMLXXX | 23 février 2020

"Everyone's is via the default charging lines in the display."

Always the master of misinformation.

Consistent with the FAQ, the "daily" section on the M3 charging screen ends where the "trip" section begins: at 90%.
https://i.imgur.com/MKl8Xyr.jpg

FISHEV | 23 février 2020

Chuckle....trusting Musk Tweets about "OK to charge to 90%

"The biggest shock came when Musk stated unequivocally that Tesla would have “a million” driverless cars on the road by the end of 2020."

Zero to date.

M-A-B-MCMLXXX | 23 février 2020

^ mental break

Tronguy | 23 février 2020

Geez: To the OP and others, watch out, very much, for FISHEV:
Public Service Announcement:

FISHEV is a known troll of several years standing and several user names who pushes an anti Tesla narrative. Please take his opinions with a grain of salt, avoid any advice he may suggest, and do not let him implant any Fear, Uncertainty, or Doubt about Tesla or your car into your own opinion.

Yeah, it's gotten that bad with that idiot.

In any case: new car, something weird happening at low mileages, and, ayup, my M3 LR RWD definitely doesn't do any of the funky stuff you're describing, and I've driven it around with 10 miles left on the estimate.

Use the app, schedule an appointment, and see what backflips you can do in terms of getting some remote troubleshooting done on the car. "Bad Battery Module" as mentioned above is a possibility, I suppose, but, if the mileage says, "68 miles to go", you shouldn't be getting abrupt stops and no motion, cold weather or not.

This is why new cars have warranties.

FISHEV | 23 février 2020

"@Tronguy "In any case: new car, something weird happening at low mileages, and, ayup, my M3 LR RWD definitely doesn't do any of the funky stuff you're describing, and I've driven it around with 10 miles left on the estimate."

What!? I though it was your wife's car not yours and it had a major blowup leaving her stranded?

TeslaTap.com | 23 février 2020

Ok, I'll come back to why I think a narrow specific case where the range "disappears" is normal. The situation is you are driving and get to a low SOC, let's say 30 miles. You stop and are in very cold weather - perhaps 32F. You let the battery cool off and cold soak to the outside temperature. I don't know how long that can take, but 30 minutes seems like enough time. Now you get back in and it may even show 30 miles left from the last range calculation. You attempt to drive off, but it will shut down with no more range.

What has happened is the car turns on the cabin and battery heater. In the M3 the motor is used as a heater. With a cold battery, it has much less capacity than when it is warm. The system instantly detects the battery is now at or below the 0% SOC battery voltage threshold and will not allow driving off.

This is a normal expectation of a Lithium battery. The pack has a lot less range when cold. That's why it heats the pack up in cold weather to get the most range. At low SOC, it is unable to do this. Now if you let the car sit, and it becomes a hot day, the battery would warm and that 30 miles would magically reappear and would be usable.

There are a lot of variables to pin this all down. I can't say at what low SOC this will always occur and at what temperatures the battery is when it occurs.

One note about the internal 0% SOC - this is a very specific battery voltage value and is not calculated. When the pack gets to or below that voltage, it becomes 0% SOC and the car will not be allowed to drive. In warm weather, if the caculated SOC gets down to 0%, but if the battery voltage is above the preset threshold, it may allow you to continue to drive. Some owners can get 2-3 more miles. I suspect the warmer the weather, you make get a few more miles, but don't depend on it.

TeslaTap.com | 23 février 2020

Should the 0% SOC issue occur - it's worth turning off the HVAC heater and seat heaters. The lower load might provide enough power for the car to start to self-heat the battery. Not something I've tried, but it might get you back a few miles of range.

rxlawdude | 23 février 2020

@TTap, most of these features stop at a 20% SOC to avoid the situation described. Dollars to donuts it's something other than WAD.

lbowroom | 23 février 2020

The limits on the daily charge range set is 80-90% on everyone’s car

FISHEV | 23 février 2020

“ I can't say at what low SOC this will always occur and at what temperatures the battery is when it occurs.”

You can actually by looking at miles not per cent of charge which, as you example points out, is meaningless as the same per cent of charge can be 50 miles or 5 miles.

Looking at Projected Miles in the Energy/Consumption graph set to Average and 30 miles will give you your best range estimate and that will include the cold ambient factors.

Be good if Tesla put Per cent of charge, Rated Range and Projected Range where the green battery indicator is located.

jallred | 23 février 2020

You can actually by looking at miles not per cent of charge which, as you example points out, is meaningless as the same per cent of charge can be 50 miles or 5 miles.-fish

Glad you recognize this. The percentage is not meaningless. It is the estimate of the percentage the battery is charged to its fullest capacity it can hold. But the number to give the mileage range estimate is based on USABLE battery capacity. A number that isn’t displayed. This is why division by the displayed number does not give an accurate estimate of the range at full charge.

FISHEV | 23 février 2020

“The percentage is not meaningless”

I suppose one could make the case that it is not meaningless, just useless for determining remaining useable range in battery.

To the original question, if you don’t want to get stranded, look at the Projected Range in Energy/Consumption.

M-A-B-MCMLXXX | 23 février 2020

“ I suppose one could make the case that it is not meaningless, just useless for determining remaining useable range in battery.”

Much like the voltage display in my pickup truck is useless for determining usable volume of fuel in my tank.

GHammer | 23 février 2020

As usual, the piscean goblin shows up and an entire thread devolves to nonsense.

pjwheeler83 | 24 février 2020

I've driven my SR+ down to less than 2% on the freeway. Less than 4 miles to 0 when plugged into SC.

Moral of the story, plug in immediately in the cold... no matter what.

That's not in ther manual? Or maybe somewhere on screen?

What about the website? Anybody?

GHammer | 24 février 2020

jordanrichard | February 16, 2020
When backing up, was the driver’s door open at all? Did you happen to lift your weight off the seat a bit?
Bighorn | February 17, 2020
That’s a normal message with low SOC when it’s cold out.

These two posts nailed it. The message is normal and comes up every time the car goes into park. The "jolting to a halt" was the car going into park with the subsequent normal low SOC message being displayed. Common issue of people lifting off the seat when backing and having the car go into park, we've seen tons of people post about this over the years.

GHammer | 24 février 2020

Edit: "The message is normal and comes up every time the car goes into park WITH A LOW SOC.

Bighorn | 24 février 2020

@Hanmer
I was feeling the same thing was likely, but the details of how the car behaved subsequently are hazy. Was the car flat bedded or did it drive normally on attempt #2?

jallred | 24 février 2020

I suppose one could make the case that it is not meaningless, just useless for determining remaining useable range in battery. -fish

Batteries don’t hold range.
But in any case, glad you say it is useless for this purpose.

Guess what. All the third party apps use this number for degradation calculation. Making that calculation in your words: useless.

Joshan | 24 février 2020

@jallred +1
Keep bringing the truth!