My Model 3 is making fan noise from the front windshield even when powered off

My Model 3 is making fan noise from the front windshield even when powered off

At first I thought it was due to the cars being charging, but after unplugged the noise is still there. I posted in another Tesla forum and someone mentioned it’s the battery cooling fans running. The interior temperature of my car is 85 degrees current. Anyone else having this issue?

40milecommuter | 5 november 2018

Me too. Runs A LOT. Doesn't seem right.

Mike UpNorth_ | 5 november 2018

I think if you're sitting in the car it's technically 'on' and the AC/heater runs. If you leave the car and it goes to sleep the air will stop blowing.

That's just my best guess.

Have you tried going into the climate control and turning off the vents?

Passion2Fly | 5 november 2018

You might have a broken thermostat. Someone reported the same symptoms and the SC diagnosed it as a broken battery temperature sensor. How’s your vampire loss? How many miles do you loose when parked?

e46s54 | 5 november 2018

@michael: My climat controls shows everything is off. the car has parked and powered off with me outside of the car.

e46s54 | 5 november 2018

@Passion2Fly: this is my 3rd day owning the car. It’s always plugged in when not driving, so i can’t reallh tell about the vampire loss.

sheldon.mike1010 | 5 november 2018

Mine makes a faint fan/pump sound from under the frunk just forward of the steering wheel for 10 or 15 minutes
after parking. Makes same sound while charging. Nothing loud like a/c-heater fan.

Mike UpNorth_ | 5 november 2018

If you can hear the front vents from outside the parked powered off car I believe that would be a service center issue to discuss. That seems weird to me. Mine is always silent in the garage while off.

e46s54 | 5 november 2018

I’m not 100% sure it’s from the front vent. It just would like some fan is making low volume noise somewhere near front windshield or front hood area. The noise is not loud at all, but it’s noticeable for sure.

Mike UpNorth_ | 5 november 2018

Is it after driving like @sheldon mentioned? If so that does sound like a cooling mechanism.
Or are you hearing it randomly hours after it's been sitting vacant?

e46s54 | 5 november 2018

@michael: Good point, I’ll check it tomorrow morning. Not positive whether I heard it this morning since I was in hurry to get to work. If so I will definitely make an appointment to SC. Problem with that is the noise can be drowned out in a somewhat noisy ambient environment such as service center garage.

e46s54 | 5 november 2018

I will also park my car tomorrow but not plug it and see if the noise returns. Someone mentioned it’s the battery cooling mechanism generating the noise when charging and sometime lingers on after charging completed.

Carl Thompson | 5 november 2018

"this is my 3rd day owning the car. It’s always plugged in when not driving, so i can’t reallh tell about the vampire loss."

You'll have vampire loss even when plugged in. The car will charge to the limit you set then stop charging. When it's stopped charging vampire loss will drain the battery even though it's plugged in. Eventually when the battery has drained enough due to vampire loss it will start to charge again but that might be days later. I'm not sure what the threshold is before it will start charging again but I've have my 3 plugged in for up to 4 or 5 days without being driven before and it steadily declined the entire time without starting to charge again. Though i assume it must start charging again at some point.

It's possible that vampire loss is lower when it's plugged in. I haven't measured it.

e46s54 | 6 november 2018

just to follow up, this morning i noticed no noise at all. so most likely the battery cooling system was working, as the temperature inside the garage cooled down over night the system stopped.

ILoveMyModel3 | 6 november 2018

@are you driving over 200 miles each day since you mentioned its always on the charger?

e46s54 | 6 november 2018

^^^no, I’m just following what the manual and everyone’s suggestion which is plug in whenever you can.

sybertel | 11 januari 2019

I have the same problem with the Model 3 whine noise on wake up, long after shut down, and at any odd time of night or day. Car is garaged and plugged in. A friend has same Model 3 with out any of this, so it is abnormal. Service here takes 20 min. on hold to answer and 1 month to get an appointment. I have never ever encountered such poor timing and slow to respond service. God forbid I ever have a road side problem. As it stands now, I would never ever drive this car out of a metro area.

Tesla needs to be involved with it's forums. It's total absence is remarkable and shows a poor attitude towards it's users. An 'I got your money, now go fend for your self' posture.

Magic 8 Ball | 11 januari 2019

@sybertel God forbid I ever have to deal with you.

lbowroom | 11 januari 2019

The car is never "off" it does stuff when it determines it needs to.

MadValley | 11 februari 2019

I just started noticing this recently. A slight whine or fan/pump noise while the car is idle, not charging, and has not been driven. It's been cold here (+/-30F) and my guess is that it's got something to do with battery warming/cooling. The odd thing is that vampire loss while this has been happening is low - 4 miles in 24hrs while unplugged. The noise has been present that whole time. I'm going to try a power off to see if that helps or a reboot if the power off doesn't work and then a call to the service department.

dbrum98 | 12 februari 2019

@MadValley, exactly the same situation here. It was whining after several hours. I noticed that by the morning the whine had stopped. So tonight I kept checking the car after a short trip to store and back. The whine stopped after about 3 hours. Don't know what it is.

binfqin | 29 maart 2019

3rd day of owning it. I have exactly the same problem. wondering if it is necessary to check with SC.

lbowroom | 29 maart 2019

Car is always alive. There is no turning it off. Cabin overheat protect perhaps? Is your phone close enough to the car to keep the phone key connected?

kalpanareddy | 25 april 2019

We are seeing the same loud noise during supercharging and also when the car is parked in the garage.

djsplice | 26 april 2019

could it be the Cabin Overheat Protection feature? i just heard my car making this same noise today, but there is no shade and the car's temp says 95 (i thought the cabin feature turned on at 105)... maybe they updated, or the thermostat they are using for the cabin is different than the outside temp and they are displaying the other on the app? anyways, a little confused. I have lost some to the vampires. :\

AWDTesla | 26 april 2019

My car has done this since day 1. Assumed ot was battery warmonger (or now, cooling)

Autom≡lon | 26 april 2019

If you check the front "grill" from the outside when this happens, do you notice the flap open? If so, it could just be the BMS doing it's thing to cool the battery coolant over the radiator. You can see it explained

lbowroom | 26 april 2019

"We are seeing the same loud noise during supercharging and also when the car is parked in the garage"

Yes, the car is working to maintain proper temperature of the battery during charging. The car is never "off"

jordanrichard | 26 april 2019

I don’t understand why after it was clearly stated by other owners that this noise is normal, people are still questioning it and adding other things, which does no good other than confuse the situation.

I suggest that Model 3 owners post questions on the MS or MX forums because that is where a vast majority of veteran owners are and definitely “have been there, done that”.

I head up the Tesla Owners Club here in CT and we provide new owners with an ownership guide to explain things like noises so that they don’t think something is wrong and tie up the customer service line.

billlake2000 | 26 april 2019

jordanrichard, my weird car made a weird noise. Kept saying, "Drive me, drive me, drive me." Talk about scary!!!

johnw | 26 april 2019

In defense of the folks asking about this- I have to say I was really surprised by how much noise the car makes when it it supposedly 'off'. Almost constant noise of one form or another even when it's asleep. My phantom drain is well within the normal range, by the way. For people asking, don't worry- it's normal!

Rykemapo | 27 april 2019

I'm still curious what a batter warmonger is.

timary | 28 april 2019

M3LR makes the same noise and my phantom drain is ~16 miles per day, despite always garaged and temps 60-70F, cabin AC ooff. I am retired so I don't drive a lot (<5k miles in 7 months), so I notice the drain more. Two thoughts on cause: (1) TeslaCam continues to run while in the garage, (2) M3 wakes up if I walk into the garage with my phone and I hear the noise, I believe I don't hear the noise if I walk in without phone.

TezLab is a really nice phone app that shows phantom drain and much more. Is there an app that would show what the electronics are doing in the Tesla, while not driving (e.g. battery management, TeslaCam, AC, lights, etc)?

Wilber | 28 april 2019

timary - do you realize you dont necessarily need to have the phone in the garage for it to turn the car on? I have found that if the phone is in my kitchen or living room (rooms closest to garage) the car is on. so , i have resorted to leaving the phone in a back bedroom when i dont use it.

timary | 28 april 2019

Thanks Wilber. I don't seem to have a problem with the two rooms & hallway next to the garage turning the car on. My wife and I go through the garage many times a day and both carry our phones. That is why I wonder if that might be part of the problem. I am going to keep the TeslaCam USB stick not installed until I can get the car to service.
I lost 26 miles in the last two days since charging and not driving, not good.

jordanrichard | 28 april 2019

Billake2000, yes, I know what you mean. My 5 yr old MS still whispers that whenever I walk passed it..... :-)

TesLife3 | 5 mei 2019

I arrived home and parked the car. Then I return to the car couple minutes later. I heard this noise for the first time too. It seems like a AC is on. But I looked at the app. The climate control is off. I suspect that's cooling feature for the battery. When I open the car door, this sound turn off right away.

jordanrichard | 6 mei 2019

To summarize this for people. If there was a problem, you would get an error message on your screen. Otherwise, any noises like relays clicking, fan runs running, slight humming, etc, are all normal. The BMS is doing what it has to. DON'T call service.

Rykemapo | 6 mei 2019

Jordan, I would believe you except I've had my car for a year and it did not start doing this until 2019.12.1.2. I think this is a cabin overheat logic bug.

kensyo | 6 mei 2019

@rykemapo me too, I only have this problem after upgraded to 2019.12.1.2.

gwolnik | 6 mei 2019

I upgraded to 2019.12.1.2 the other day and then just noticed a fan coming on when the car was "off" today while I was exercising in the garage. I was doing crunches on a mat on the floor next to my model 3 and all of a sudden this noise starts from the car, startling me! I was not the last one to drive the car and thought perhaps the air conditioning was left on and started to cycle the blower to cool the car, but I opened the door and confirmed that the air was not on. The noise was coming from the frunk area and since I didn't smell anything burning or see any smoke, I decided there was no spontaneous combustion going on. I finished my set and the noise became softer in volume, but I could still hear something. I'm glad to read this may be associated with the recent software. The car is charging right now (I schedule charging for off-peak rate time,) I think I'll go check on it before going to bed.

jiawei10 | 7 mei 2019

I'm having the same issue. With HVAC set to "Auto" @ 68F and even in cool mornings here in CA, after 10 minutes of driving, the cooling fan (at the front lower vent, not near the windshield) runs full blast while driving and even when parked. The fan shuts down finally after the car locks. The car is at the service center now, but I just got a text saying everything is normal. driving around town - fans on full blast. Pulled into Tesla service bay - fans running full blast. Very frustrated ...

ashpal19 | 21 mei 2019

I have had a car for about 45 days. Even I have noticed this problem specifically after the latest update 2019.12.1.2

shellbitt | 21 mei 2019

its bms cir.fluid for batt. new after china fire maybe.

peter | 1 juni 2019

Hi I have now noticed this "fan" noise as well. My car is a Blue M3P. The car is not parked in a garage but standing outside in the sun, locked and without any app running. I have not turned on Dog Mode or overheating protection or whatever it is called. I have the latest software installed 2019.16.2.3. It is about 24 degrees outside but warm in the sunshine.

Has anybody found any more information about this noise and where it comes from? I have searched the manual for information but still no wiser.

My Phantom drain has not been significant before but the new software was only installed today??

Any idea?

courtymjones | 17 juli 2019

Noticed the same thing on my car (both inside and out of the garage). I called the Service Center and confirmed that it's the car cooling itself down from ambient heat. Even while charging it will turn the cooling system on and off as needed. @peter

Joseb | 17 juli 2019

Same as @courtymjones

the fan noise is certainly different, and way quieter, than the AC fan noise.
Usually starts like that for a while, I left it plugged in in my garage, by morning on my way to work is completely silent. Sometimes during the evening will go completely silent as well.

in7 | 25 juli 2019

Yes, I believe that the car is keeping the battery from getting too hot or too cold. I had first noticed the extra noise on 2 different hot days on which I had done some supercharging.

40milecommuter | 25 juli 2019

Tesla updated the software to help dry the A/C and prevent mold growth in your ventilation system. That's why the fan runs after you exit the car.

Thrillion | 9 augustus 2019

Noticed today after opening the door (car in park in driveway) some grass clippings (I mow myself) blowing around in FRONT of the M3.
Put my hand in front of the grill and sure enough air was blowing out through grill at my hand.
This is exactly opposite I expected the air to blow.
Concerned that the fan polarity is switched, maybe on purpose but can't see this as a regular function.

Anyone else feel air blowing out the front of the grill?

Joshan | 9 augustus 2019

try reading the post directly above you possibly?