Saturday, March 16, 2019

Tesla Saga Resolved

  The Tesla roadside tow truck arrived and determined indeed the car was powerless and would need a complete full charge but not at a super charger. He failed to inform us of the details except to say that it was likely that it would fail proper charging there and then it would need further towing. We did not completely understand but accepted his explanation. We agreed to have our Tesla towed to our home where the garage outlet would serve as the power source. After he loaded the car onto a towing device becauseTeslas cannot be towed like convential fuel injected cars due to the huge battery packs under the body of the car for there is now way for a hook up.  News to us.
   Several hours passed that afternoon but eventually the car was unloaded in front of our home garage close enough to the power source of 110 volts known as a Level 1 power source by Tesla. Level 2 is 220 volt and it goes up to Level 4 at this time.. Level 1 is the slowest way to charge a battery. Before leaving our premises with a $360 payment for his service, the service person helped us to plug the power cord into the car and then the wall. Seeing a green blink at the charge site on the Tesla he was satisfied his job was done so he drove off.
   Less than 10 minutes later the flashing green light was off and no charge was happening. We had to call back to Tesla service. They told us to call CAA to get a boost on the 12 volt battery for anything else to charge. Who knew? Seems the car has one 12 Volt unit under the front hood inside the trunk, the front trunk as there is no engine like in gas cars.
   Convinced that we had a solution we called CAA and as we were not members we had to join up for a $240 membership fee first. Then we equested a 12 volt battery boost on a Tesla. CAA sent a person who had no clue where to find that battery. Using You Tube we showed him. He said he cannot do it and left. We called CAA to complain. They sent another person and again that person was unwilling. We asked why and got the answer that the battery is under a protective cover and would need to be removed which the service person had no experience to do. So our saga goes on. We had to call Tesla service again and after much complaint and asking why person one failed to stay to boost that  battery in the first place they agreed to send  a service truck to boost the 12 volt battery and stay on site for at least enough charge time so that we could then use our wall outlet.
   When he came I watched him unscrew the cover that hid that battery and a few other useful items like the windshield washer fluid tank. Rather impractical I thought.I supposed they did it for a cool appearance of the frunk storage space. Soon the battery was clearly visible and he set up the charge cables and ran his unit for a good half hour. Then the Tesla was hooked up to the wall and we all waited to see if the flashing green charge light would hold . It did. Again we were faced with a service charge but the Tesla dispatcher gave a discount because her first guy had not properly completed his job. At the end of the day we lost half of a Saturday and over $700 for new car road side assistance as Tesla does not include any for their brand new very expensive cars. Most other car companies offer great assistance as part of their warranty. My KIA came with a 5 year  plan depending on mileage done over that time.
   Well the Tesla took over three days to reach the recommended 80% charge. The lesson learned was always keep enough charge to get to a super charger where it can be replenished in around 2 hours.
Once it was charged I used the password and key card to sync my iPhone using the Tesla app. This allowed me to see what is going on with the charge and software updates and other function like unlocking the car and using it as the invisible key to start the car.
   I got into the car and adjusted the mirrors and steering column and seat and just chose reverse to back out of the garage and put it into drive. The screen showed my speed. I could set the car to many function including self park and even have it come out of the garage driverless to meet me in the drive. With autopilot on the software then takes over and drives me to the destination I have requested at the speed I have set. I have not tried those options. Our winter snow was too bad as was our very cold temperature, neither good for the battery usage. On a good spring day the car ought to manage 380 km per charge. I however will not have a chance to test that.
   Last Wednesday while Buddy and I were on a week away to a warm place to escape winter hubby decided to trade in his brand new Tesla for a 2019 Benz, a car he is more familiar with. The Tesla was too techy for him. His lease on the Benz he drives now was almost up anyway so now the new Benz will be owned. He is excited about his trade  but truthfully I know for a fact that even today’s  Mercedes are equipped with fancy tech that he is not able to use to his benefit. It too comes with a tablet and software updates. It is to be delivered next week or the following.
   I will miss the Tesla a bit because I took time to learn about its bells and whistles and was fascinated about how all the future cars will become very autonomous globally. In fact Porche is working on a car to rival Tesla at this very moment.

P.S. These cars will work on voice commands.Some Tesla’s already have the software to do so.

Saturday, March 2, 2019

My Tesla Experience

    Can you believe this? On October the 1st Hubby got an email to come and take possession of his Model 3 Tesla on October 5th and to bring a bank draft for the full amount.Ugh!, I was aware he had placed an order on one some four years ago. With his decline in memory I had suggest he cancel his purchase and he assured me he would. Now it was clear he had not. In fact I came to know he upgraded to the all wheel drive two engines and battery version along with the auto pilot drive mode about a year ago. This became clear when he got the details of his order. I was somewhat dismayed but he had earned the wages so I had really no right to deny him of his purchase.
   As he scrambled to get his finances in line for the payment, I began my journey to learn how a Tesla Model 3 would function. I quickly figured out this car would need several hours of how to do things using the touch screen. On the day of delivery someone would need to drive this new acquisition out of the dealers to a place it could be parked untill hubby was keen to begin to use it. He currently drives a high end Mercedes leased till the end of June. He managed to lease the Benz while I was in UK for the birth of our first grand baby in June 2016. It looked so much like the leased 2014 I failed to notice that he picked me up from the airport in a newer car.
   Now back to the Tesla experience. I began to think of it as a tech challenge as well as a memory one.. I spent several hours on You Tube to learn all I could so hubby could pick up the new car. But it became very clear that hubby would not be able to manage to drive this computer on wheels for  all things Tesla happen from a touch screen on the dash and hubby has trouble using his iPhone apps and rarely touches his iPad. He uses tax software and is able to read some news feeds on his office desktop but lets others manage his lack of computer savvy.
   Realising the complexity of driving and controlling a Tesla, I phoned his office to give instructions to our employee (who was under thirty and tech capable) that I needed his assistance. I sent him the links on how to drive the Model 3. I knew hubby would need a ride to the dealer so his employee would likely be asked. I was right. They drove to the dealers in the Benz. Once the ownership of the Tesla was his and he had a brief orientation hubby was asked to take the Tesla off the lot. Well he did not feel comfortable with his brief orientation so he decided he would drive his Benz back to his office and the employee got the job of driving the Tesla there just as I had figured. Having watched a few videos earlier our employee got the new car safely to the underground office parking spot.  And there it stayed almost untouched. Two friends got to see it and take it for a short spin.
   Hubby was under the impression the Tesla would be fine just sitting in his office garage. I wish I had done much further reading especially about battery discharge on that model. I had watched many videos on how to use various functions and even had hubby watch a few on our big screen TV. However, I bad I failed to learn a car being in storage for more than 6 weeks was a serious mistake. In fact the car cannot remain unattached to a power source for very long periods of time much like any tablet. That I believe will become an issue for those who put cars into storage where there are no power sources in close range.
   By the time I had finally convinced hubby to take the car out for a drive to give it a charge at a nearby Tesla super charger the car had other ideas. It told us it had no power left. None. So now we had a challenge. How does one charge a Tesla that is away from any power source? Call Tesla service and they come to tow the car out of the underground garage with a special low clearance tow truck to tow the car to a power source. That costs a fair bit of money and there is more to this story to be told soon.

P.S. I finished my uni course with an A grade. Yeah!