How to avoid leaving phone in car

How to avoid leaving phone in car

I just got my car today, however I've left my phone twice in the car... My Volt chimes to remind key left in car, but model 3 seems do thing and the car's still unlocked. Did I miss some proper setting or it is indeed a risk that if I totally forgot about my phone in the car, someone may be able to drive my car away?

WardT | 23 augustus 2018

I agree, this seems too easy.

Atoms | 24 augustus 2018

I’ve left mine in the car several times. It would be great to have some sort of reminder. Maybe a special chime if it is plugged in and you open the drivers door? Or maybe a double horn bleep if you close the driver door and the phone is plugged in.

ST70 | 24 augustus 2018

keep it in your pocket or purse or man-purse....why would you put your phone "in" your car?

theblindtree | 24 augustus 2018 charge it? (Not sure if serious)

Anyway, I think buzzing the app or something should suffice. I agree that it's a little too easy to forget, but I'm always in the habit of patting myself down when I get out of the car.

derotam | 24 augustus 2018

My brain reminds me every time I get out of my vehicle to take my phone. Semi seriously though, if you keep forgetting your phone in your car then it doesn't seem so important to you so why not just take the Tesla App off your phone and then you don't have to worry about it?

That was a rhetorical question, no answer needed or desired. :)

ernestsco | 24 augustus 2018

How do you avoid leaving phone in car? Pick it up and get out the car with it.
On a serious note: Turn on the lock alarm and if you don't hear it while walking away, your phone may not be with you

Temple07 | 24 augustus 2018

Again, I agree. Tesla who is supposed to be forward thinking should work on this. Most of us use smart phones to operate the car. Who doesn't have a smart phone these days?

efuseakay | 24 augustus 2018

Start playing Pokémon Go. You’ll be taking your phone literally everywhere.

derotam | 24 augustus 2018

Do people need their house to remind them that they forgot to put their clothes on if they walk out of the house naked too? IMO if you are not so attached to your phone that you regularly forget it then perhaps you shouldn't be relying on it to lock your vehicle.

SteveWin1 | 24 augustus 2018

If you're forgetting your phone in your car, then you're going to forget it at a restaurant or anywhere else you might take it out. Figure out a solution. Some smart watches and fitness bands will vibrate when they break bluetooth connection with your phone to let you know that you're leaving your phone behind. That would work. Or just get better at remembering. Literally every time I stand up, I pat three pockets, my keys pocket, my phone pocket and my wallet pocket. Unless I feel something in all three pockets, I do not leave the area until I find whatever it is I'm forgetting. Maybe come up with a system like this that you do every time you get up.

BLKPM3 | 24 augustus 2018

Our Audi has this feature. If you turn off the car and open a door with the phone plugged in, you get both a message on the screen and a voice message stating "you phone is still in the vehicle" I think it is very handy.

Sslnight | 24 augustus 2018

Leave something important in your car like a cell phone? lol J/K. (This joke stems from the "how do you remember to not forget your kid in a car" meme) Actually a software chime would be cool on the 3 but my solution will be getting the Volterman Wallet (if it ever actually comes out). It has a distance alarm for your phone that when you leave the BT range a chime is sounded on the wallet and phone. Kinda a cool tech device that should give some cool solutions.

derotam | 24 augustus 2018

@Sslnight, that's what I want, someone to hack my smart wallet , haha.

Cache_In | 24 augustus 2018

I,ve had the same issue. Few times I have left my black phone in the charging area. It’s mainly because it blends in and is out of sight. The Audi feature is good. Some kind of visual alert on either the main screen or phone screen would be good. The car lock chime helped a lot, since it’s introduction, as I definitely look out for that.

slasher0016 | 24 augustus 2018

Only time I've ever done it was because it was plugged in and I'm going in the house. Haven't ever done it while out and about because I have to have my phone. It would be nice if there was an audible ding if you open the door with the phone still plugged in and charging.

httran26 | 24 augustus 2018

"Anyway, I think buzzing the app or something should suffice."

lol ,this is funny. And how do you check the app?

I'm so used to the phone in my pocket that when I go anywhere without it, it feels strange. I have left my phone in my car but after walking 10ft from the car, I can feel that my right pocket feels off. I just head back and get my phone. The new door lock honk helps too.

jonathanhall | 24 augustus 2018

I’ve been leaving my phone in the car recently too. When I had my truck it was mounted high to use waze and music. Now that I’m getting used to using my model 3 screen my phone hasn’t been necessary and I forget it in the charger.

I wish my Apple Watch warmed me when I got too far from my phone but it seems like the Tesla app could maybe send a notification that the phone remained in the car when the car senses No one is in the car except the phone.

Right now I’m trying to train my brain to listen for the lock honk.

jefjes | 24 augustus 2018

I've only done it once and I was looking back wondering why the mirrors hadn't folded before the honk feature came out. The stupid feeling as I walked back to my car to get the phone etched into my memory enough that it's never happened again. Guess we all adapt to different things in different ways.

derotam | 24 augustus 2018

@httran26, hold your ear up to the window to see if you hear your phone buzzing. If you didn't hear anything then you must have your phone right? lol

wiboater4 | 24 augustus 2018

Can you turn the Tesla app feature off and just use the cards? I have a smart phone but am not dependent on having it with me at all times. I'm older and forget things all the time. On my current car I always just push the lock button on exiting the vehicle. It's become normal so I do it without thinking.

Xerogas | 24 augustus 2018

@wiboater4: "Can you turn the Tesla app feature off and just use the cards?"
Yes you can just use the cards. If you never configure the app, then you’re not using it.

theblindtree | 24 augustus 2018

@httran26, you mean you wouldn't pay attention to an audibly loud buzzing noise (assuming the pad wouldn't dampen it much) as you're getting out of your car? Though it safe to say that if you're leaving your phone in your car, the likelihood of you paying attention to the vibration is not so good, lol

wiboater4 | 24 augustus 2018

Xerogas I would use the app for things like Temp and charging schedule etc. So I need to configure it. Just not the auto lock and unlock. I plan on getting holder for the card to put it on a key chain.

wiboater4 | 24 augustus 2018

Here's a thought. Maybe Tesla could make it so we could use a Bluetooth device like a fitness band to do the unlock , lock feature. I only take mine off to charge it. I'm not sure if that would be secure enough though.

MichaelB00012 | 24 augustus 2018

@jonathanhall - so let me see if I understand your suggestion: you want the Tesla app to pop a notification that you've left your phone in the car (so you won't see if on the phone) but you're presuming this would appear on your Apple Watch, which you've said doesn't let you know that it's too far from the phone? I'm pretty certain this wouldn't work.

The only part of your post that would be even remotely usable would be to use the seatbelt detection system to alert the driver, but since your phone is in the car any kind of alert to that is not smart (smart watches have very low use now so no) so it would have to honk the car twice or something to alert you, or possibly play a verbal tone as your butt removes from seat (or the last butt).

glavewu | 24 augustus 2018

@ernestsco That is actually what I do, the lock chime was not enabled as default, I just enabled it after I browsed all setting menu. I do hope tesla can release the rumored key fob and add those features like key reminders other cars have. The app is not very stable, sometimes it unlocks the car automatically and sometimes I have to unlock my phone to have the car unlocked. Great concept but in reality sometimes not as convenient as a key fob.

glavewu | 24 augustus 2018

@MichaelB00012 I think just a little chime when you close the door while phone is still inside the car is totally enough. Just treat the phone as a key fob and do the same thing other cars do. Not asking for something unreasonable or unachievable

Rt002k | 24 augustus 2018

One option: I had a Toyota with a proximity keyfob, so the fob never left my pocket. If I forgot to turn the car off when leaving the vehicle, it would make a long beep after shutting the door if the car was still on and it didn't detect the keyfob in the car. Could do the opposite - make a long beep if the door is shut and the phone is still detected in the car, and there are no butts in the car. Though this may get complicated if there are car seats in the back as then it would always be detected as "butt present". I'm sure a couple smart people giving it more than the 2 mins thought I just did could come with an elegant solution.

The.elders | 24 augustus 2018

I'm sure Mr. Miyagi has the perfect solution (i.e., chore) to build the muscle memory needed for the ever-important "place phone in pocket when leaving car" routine.

azdonna | 24 augustus 2018

Like @jefjes, the horror I experienced after realizing the first time I left mine in the car while running into a FedEx store has scared me enough to be extremely careful since. But I'm sure I'll eventually get lax and possibly leave it again.

KC3 | 24 augustus 2018

I’ve done this before too.
Habits are powerful things. Give yourself some tine to develop a new habit. I now just beep my phone in my pocket unless I absolutely need to charge it. You’ll get used to it soon.

billlake2000 | 24 augustus 2018

Try a Bluetooth cellphone leash

Blue Angel | 25 augustus 2018

I love derotam‘s post!

Blue Angel | 25 augustus 2018

I agree with SteveWin1’s 3 pat down method. That’s the ticket to always having your phone with you when exiting your car!

efuseakay | 25 augustus 2018

Seriously though, there should be an audible warning. Would be an easy feature to add.

zach | 21 januari 2019


As much as I'm a person who has never lost any physical keys due to strict adherence to ritual, I've left my phone charging in the car's center console twice now for fairly long stretches of time. In both cases this happened when my exacting car-exit routine was interrupted by distractions. It would be awfully nice if the car did *something* to point out that things seem wrong.

If a driver puts their car in park, exits, and closes all the doors, but the phone is still inside the car, a little chime would be nice.

It's easy to say that this shouldn't happen and we should all be extra careful to never leave our phones, which is true. But screaming kids or a near-miss with a passing vehicle or any number of events can conspire to derail one's attention, not to mention that there are plenty of people with neurological conditions that can interfere with their concentration who could benefit from a gentle reminder.

andy.connor.e | 21 januari 2019

The only time i ever left my phone in the car, was when i test drove a car that had a wireless phone charger in the center console. I've never had to charge my phone in the car before, and the first time i did it i left it in the car.

#Foreshadowing #LessonsLearned

soltis2 | 21 januari 2019

So, I have rather the opposite question - I'd like to be able to leave my phone locked in the car while I carry only the "credit card" key - for working out, etc. when my phone in its wallet case is too bulky. Has anyone figured out how to leave the phone in the car on purpose and still have it lock but unlockable with the key?

rkalbiarEV | 21 januari 2019

I have left my phone in my car a handful of times as well. Would be a nice feature, for some type of warning.

P49X | 21 januari 2019


Disable Bluetooth in your phone and the car won't know it's there.

soltis2 | 21 januari 2019

Thanks, P49X. Sounds easy enough!

kgkiran | 21 januari 2019

Having security PIN to start driving might help the theft if phone is still in car.

gballant4570 | 21 januari 2019

So far, making sure I pick it up and take it with me has worked well.

MrSexyTime | 21 januari 2019

I really want to close the forward console section lid with my phone in it, but can't as I know I'll forget my phone.