Just got my car! but how do you turn off the radio?

Just got my car! but how do you turn off the radio?

How do you turn off the radio? Just took a scan through the owner's manual and it only talks
about turning off when I exit the car.

bsimoes | 3 februari 2013

I think I remember someone posting that it really never is off unless you shut the car off and exit. I believe that person said that he just needed to turn to volume down to zero...does that make sense?

bfranks273 | 3 februari 2013

Thats funny. All this time and I never felt the need to do that. Press the left roller to mute it. Is that good enough?

portia | 3 februari 2013

push center button of the left thumb wheel to Play/Pause on music from the USB, probably works for radio too, which I don't normally listen to. Does the same thing on the Media screen, play/pause button.

trydesky | 3 februari 2013

In my playing, I see that the center button on the steering wheel will indeed mute the sound, but that's not really off. I guess it's close enough, but am I wasting power, since the radio is really still on?

jat | 3 februari 2013

It turns off when you exit the car and walk away.

Bound466 | 3 februari 2013

The left steering wheel scroll button will mute/pause it.

This works just like my Sonos all-house system that I have at home. It was weird at first - "what, no off or stop button???". But after a while you get used to it. You realize you don't need an off button. Pause/mute does the trick equally well. Stop/off is just a custom of the past audio systems we can shed now with our new electronic toys of the future.

olanmills | 3 februari 2013

You can also hit Pause on the touchscreen, if applicable.

Yes, the radio system is never "off", but the amount of electricity used when no sound is being output is miniscule. Also, depending on what type of radio you were listening to, it may be more "off" than others. For example, you can't really turn the FM radio off, but if you're listening to TuneIn or Slacker, I'm pretty sure Pause will make the radio stop streaming (downloading), so the radio will be doing pretty much nothing.

Robert22 | 3 februari 2013

I've also found if you pause the radio while using slacker ( not sure about tune in) you can take a phone call and when your call ends and you resume the radio, it picks up from where it left off, like pausing a TiVo. Is the car using the built in hard drive for this or is it just the nature of internet radio?

DouglasR | 4 februari 2013

If a radio is muted in the forest, is it on?

nickjhowe | 4 februari 2013

+1 @DouglasR

olanmills | 4 februari 2013

@Robert22 for Slacker, it downloads the song faster than it plays, if it can, and from what I can tell, it doesn't start trying to download the next song until the current song ends. So yes, that's why the song can start instantly after pausing or even exiting and reentering the car (if it didn't go to sleep). You can also finish listening to a song even if you drive underground and lose the signal because the current song gets buffered into memory.

With TuneIn though, the music is playing a stream with behavior similar to the experience of FM radio; when you're not listening to a station, it's still broadcasting; you can't pause and resume. Your car needs a constant signal to continue playing the TuneIn station.

Jgrogan | 4 februari 2013

This is too funny. I got my car a week ago and don't yet have plates (work has been busy ). So the car has been sitting in the garage. I just went into it for the second time to play around and could not figure out how to turn off the radio. I came inside and said to my wife that I need to figure out how to turn off the radio. She said I should post in this forum. I said that it would be too embarrassing to ask. And here it is. So thank you for asking the silly question, there are a lot of us out there who are even sillier

July10Models | 4 februari 2013

The microprocessor is busy doing other stuff when you pause the radio and since the amplifier is not being driven, the radio is essentially off. This is the 21st. Century, there is no off button.

ThomasK | 4 februari 2013

Once you exit the car, if you lock the car (press once on the top of the key), the car will shut off, doors will lock, radio will turn off. If you walk away (and have walkaway lock engaged) the same thing will happen after a minute or so.

ThomasK | 4 februari 2013

Oops, nevermind. You were asking about while you are driving. I turn the media to my iphone (synched) and then not hit play on my playlist.

trydesky | 4 februari 2013

@Jgrogan, Know what's even funnier, I don't have my plates either, so mine is sitting in the garage too! But I'm still waiting on Telsa to fedex me my temp plates...waited 2 1/2 years, now I'm like a kid on Christmas with a new toy, and no batteries :)

Brian H | 4 februari 2013

Off? That's so old world. In the new Digital Dispensation, everything is always 'On', and waiting ...

jbunn | 4 februari 2013

The entire off experience takes getting used to. I had to learn to get out of the car with the heater running and the radio playing, and close the door. Specificaly, I had to learn to trust the car. And stop reaching for keys when I got in. My wife has only driven about 4 times. Tonight she gets behind the wheel, I get in the passengers seat and she holds her hand out. I stare at it, she looks at me expectantly. Takes a few seconds before the reality of life in the future sinks in.

dstiavnicky | 6 februari 2013

I still like 'off'. I own a handful of cars and never, ever turn the radio on in any of them. My experience is listening to the engine / exhaust. In the MS, it will be listening to the wind...

I wonder if removing the radio and all speakers will increase mileage significantly? Hmmm...

STEVEZ | 6 februari 2013

Removing the sound system entirely won't make a detectable difference to the range unless it weighs 150lb or more ;-)

In other words, it doesn't use enough power to make a dent in the 20kW or so needed just to move the S down the road at a reasonable speed.

David Dennis | 6 februari 2013

Because the radio is operated through the touch screen computer, I think its electronics are basically "free" to operate. So when the touch screen is operational, so is the radio.

Remember, the touch screen computer system is probably very similar in power consumption to a couple of iPads. If you look at an iPad and realize how tiny its battery system is, you can understand that its power consumption is negligible compared to the needs of the car. So for your convenience, it's on all the time, and so is the radio subsystem.


rshinar | 14 mei 2014

I have owned my S for a year and still have trouble turning off the radio (OK, I am old school): when I hit the wheel with my left thumb, about a third of the time, it just switches to another station instead of muting----I know, I know, its doesn't need to be turned off, but a third of the time it is now on another station and I need to go through the mechanics of getting it back on the right station. Can't Tesla just make a "click" that turns off the radio instead of expecting my fat thumbs to make the intricate push at exactly a 90 degree angle?

nickjhowe | 14 mei 2014

@rshinar - my car is 17 months old. Though I don't have any problem using the thumb wheel, it is very obvious that the more recent loaners I've driven have a much more pronounced 'click' when pushing the thumbwheel, whereas mine is more spongy. It doesn't bother me enough to ask Service to swap them out.

Rocky_H | 16 mei 2014

What I have noticed is that having it set on the FM radio and muted with the thumb wheel still occasionally has very slight hissing or popping sounds coming from the speakers, like the amplifier is still running and amplifying bits of signal noise in the wiring or something. To actually get it quiet, I switch to Slacker and pause it, then it actually does go completely silent.

tezzla.SoCal | 16 mei 2014

I always use Slacker, so I just pause it (from the screen).

Rheumboy | 16 mei 2014

Just turn the volume to 11 and that will mute it

jehaley1203 | 15 augustus 2014

Bluetooth is not working - reports that it "needs service". I thought maybe if I could power-cysle the sound system, Bluetooth might correct itself.

tes-s | 15 augustus 2014

Try rebooting - that may fix it. If not, call customer service - they may have some ideas.

bevguy | 18 augustus 2014

Spongy scroll wheel- I think they are all like that.
A little ,more definite feel would bee nice but it's a nit pick issue. They buy the turn signals from Mercedes, I don't know where the scroll wheel comes from.

I believe the cruise control is also MB, and is typical German over engineered , not very intuitive, but a quality feel.

Haggy | 18 augustus 2014

If enough people complain, Tesla could add an off button to the touch screen. But it would come down to having it press the pause button for you. The real difference between pause and off it that pause leaves the heads spinning against your cassette tape and off doesn't. It's even worse if you went for the eight track tape option.

sule | 18 augustus 2014

How do you turn a music player app on your computer / tablet / phone of choice? It is the same thing. Note:

a) "Radio" is just an "app". You can close it (hide it) if you wish, after telling it to stop playing (and not do it in the background. Same with Tesla.

b) Your computer / tablet / phone still stays on. Just like Tesla does. And it should.

c) The amplifier and the speakers are not used solely for "radio". They are used for other things, by other apps. Say phone app.

d) If you like it "off" to save energy that is not a problem. Pausing it saves the same amount of energy.and this is not going to increase your range significantly.

e) if you just want silence you have two options - turn down the volume (any streaming will continue, you will not "hold your spot") or pausing it (it will resume from that spot on for some sources).

f) I rarely turned the radio off in my previous cars dating back decades. They were always wired correctly and would not be "on" without the key being in ignition... or fob in the car and/or door open in case of Tesla. Tesla automatically reduces volume when the door is open as well, FYI.

sule | 18 augustus 2014

Typo... that should have started with:

How do you turn a music player app on your computer / tablet / phone of choice *OFF*?


solarpowered | 19 augustus 2014

Double-click the left scroll wheel on the steering wheel.

Haeze | 19 augustus 2014

I got used to not shutting off my radio back when I had an iPod Nano... To actually turn one off was a hidden feature where you had to hold down a button for 5 seconds, but if you just pause it, it would power itself off after a couple seconds, and use next to no battery power.

Think of it this way, when your "radio" in the Model S is paused, it uses about as much power as the music app on an iPhone when it is paused (since you can not actually shut off the music player in the phone). Meaning, all the amps are off, the app itself is using no CPU, or memory, and is just sitting there in the background. The car's GPS (that you also can't disable) takes more power in the background than the paused radio does.

Brian H | 20 augustus 2014

There should be a "Lurk" option. That would make more sense to people.

alekzdz | 17 juli 2015

My suggestion would be that you click on the volume control and that 'pauses and mutes' which would effectively be the same as off.

Nantang | 17 juli 2015

I mostly use USB sticks. I find my car "likes to listen on its own," as the tracks are often several ahead of where they were when I left, even if they were paused when I left the car earlier.

loefvinc | 17 juli 2015

Back in v6.1 of the firmware they had finally gotten the radio right. Pause meant Pause where no matter what the source or condition it would stay paused until you un-paused it. When 6.2 came out all that changed. Now pause is pause only until you plug the car in, then pause turns into play - really sucks when you've got an audiobook paused and you come out to find it several chapters farther into the story from where you left it. Switching to a different source to keep your book from running on doesn't work either. The v6.2 improvement here is that when you switch sources like USB1 to USB2 it always resets back to the beginning of the track. Again, 6.1 had that figured out - when you switched sources with that version it would retain your location in the track. I'm back to having to keep a paper book marks. Really wish they would fix that.

sbeggs | 18 juli 2015



debracraig | 26 juli 2016

Pause and muting only works until I get in my car again. Then radio jumps in LOUD. I wish I could just TURN OFF. Agree with rshinar.

SUN 2 DRV | 26 juli 2016

After 3 years still haven't found the OFF button. :-)

Best way is to just run the left scroll wheel down to turn down the volume all or most of the way.