Almost a year ago I had my first annual service for my Model S and wrote about the experience. Given it took me 6 weeks to make the last appointment, this time around I called 6 weeks before the anniversary date and was surprised to get an appointment 2 weeks out. This was great to hear as i’ve had concerns about Tesla service being able to scale. I had my pick of days so I decided to do it on the same day as the Model 3 launch so I could drop my car off and go wait in line for the Model 3 which was a lot of fun.
The second service brought a number of good surprises and I wanted to share my experience.
I usually keep a short list of small stuff that I want them to take a look at next time its in for service (which doesn’t happen much!). My list this time was the following:
- Seat belt check from the service bulletin – I didnt swarm with the masses to have them checked and just had it checked during this service
- Loud jet engine like noise while supercharging
- Exploded lug nut on front left wheel
- One of my 2 charger cables (UMC) had some intermittent charges last time I used it
- Annual service
As usual they gave me a Model S as a loaner. This one was a S85 like mine only slightly newer and sadly no Autopilot hardware to play with.
Service was done by the end of the day and I picked my car back up. The list of work they did was long and unexpected, and so was the price — but in a positive way.
I hope I don’t get anyone in trouble and that none of this was a mistake as the published prices below are higher, but i’m going to share the experience anyway.
My car was 50 miles short of 60,000 miles and I do not have the extended warranty. I just have coverage on the battery and drive unit (unlimited miles/8 years for both). The total cost for the annual service was $400.00.
The annual service was unexpectedly inexpensive and comprehensive.
My last annual service was 35,000 miles ago. The last time I had it in to Tesla was for a (free) Drive Unit replacement at 43,000 miles. Otherwise I just had tire rotations done by a local shop for $20 each time.
As the miles crank on my Model S the average service costs jumps up for the annual events and then averages back done with the other events just being tire rotations:
I’m currently averaging $0.02/mile for service costs at 60,000 miles which is the same as my old Acura at the same mileage. The Acura started climbing right after 60,000 miles and i’m expecting the Model S to remain flat. Time will tell.
Should the service remain flat as expected people are going to find out that the Model 3 is a an even more affordable car than they think…
Now for the laundry list of things they did
- Inspect Front Seat Belt Pre-Tensioners for Correct Installation – No issue found (as expected)
- Replace Battery Coolant Heater Due To Potential Low Isolation
- Standard 62,500 mile annual service items:
- Check logs for errors
- Update to latest firmware
- New wiper blades (Boshe)
- New key fob batteries (2)
- Replace cabin air filter
- Top off washer fluid
- Check brake/coolant fluids
- Check other latches/doors for seals etc.
- Rotated tires (they didnt need this but no harm done)
- Customer states there is a jet engine sound when supercharging – No issues found.
- Performed thermal test. No abnormal noises heard. Checked cooling fan operation, no motor or bearing issues found. Vehicle performing as intended.
- They said it was likely the amount of driving I was doing (I drove to FL and back) and the higher temperatures in FL. None of the other Teslas made the same sounds but everything did work as expected.
- Customer states UMC in bag intermittently fails to engage charge port – They gave me a completely new one!
- This was my second UMC replacement in 2 years. I have 2 one for home charging and one for travel. The new UMC has a newer design around the charge release button.
- Customer states lug nut on front left wheel is damaged – They replaced all 20 lug nuts!
- Bolt Contacting Front Suspension Fore Link – They decided they felt like making this better for some reason.
- Four wheel alignment – They said they did this verbally but it wasn’t on the receipt.
- Cold Weather Brake Package – They decided I needed better brakes and replaced everything!
- Install Rear Dust Shields, Install Front Rotors, Install Rear Rotors, Install Front And Rear HP1000-T Brake Pads
And of course they provided a free loaner, and charged up my car.
Annual Service Summary
While many joke about how little service they actually have to do on an annual service for the money they charge I think the value I got from Tesla for $400 was tremendous.
With my high mileage driving I essentially “skipped” many of their recommended service intervals and instead of penalizing me for that by adding them up and hitting me with a big bill as other manufacturers would do, they charged me the for the interval that fit the current mileage.
After the service was done I asked the service manager if I could keep doing just the annual services despite my high mileage and he said I could.
Thanks Tesla. See you again at 90,000 miles!
Marc O Chouinard said:
Here the link to the canadian service plan cost.
As you can see, the price is different depending on which service your having.
Yes, I just thought it was interesting that I skipped many of the intervals and when they did do a service it was an inexpensive one
I thought service was always a flat, $600 fee regardless of what work was done. It would appear that’s not true? I’m wondering now if I shouldn’t have bought the 4 years pre-paid plan, especially given that I have pretty low annual mileage. (I’ve only had the car about 4 months now, so I haven’t had it serviced yet. And mileage is at about 3,000.)
It originally was, but then they changed it. With Test you sort of have to get used to them changing plans, offerings as they mature. For my mileage the pre-paid plans made no sense but for lower mileage people the pre-paid plans are pretty much an guaranteed savings over the normal rates (at the cost of forking over the money upfront).
Steve Realmuto said:
It’s great to see that Tesla went far above and beyond what’s required for your out of warranty Model S, but I can’t help wondering if that’s because of your blog. Do they know about your blog? I only hope other Model S/X owners like myself are treated as well if/when the time comes.
About your bargain “published prices below are higher…” You only paid for a year 1, 3, 5… service and it looks like that’s what you got for the annual service.
According to the same service schedule you referenced ( https://www.teslamotors.com/support/service-plans)
with 60,000 miles and only a ‘Year 1” service done previously, you should have had a ‘Year 4’ service done, which would have cost $900 and also included brake fluid replacement, AC service, and battery coolant replacement. I know Elon has said they will honor the warranty (not the Extended Service Agreement) even if you don’t follow the recommended service interval, but are you really comfortable skipping these fluid replacements? At your current annual mileage, that would mean you don’t have the battery coolant replaced until it has120,000 miles.
I don’t think Tesla knows I (or this blog) exist. I’ve had no contact with them ever so I doubt its special treatment (plus I use a different email address with them).
The fluids part is a good question and one i’ve been thinking about myself. Thats why I asked them if it was ok to come back only once a year. I’m assuming that next time (at 90,000 miles if my mileage trend continues) they may do things like a coolant replacement even though its early from an age perspective.
Awesome that you got a RED loaner! It might not have had AP, but at least you were able to see how much faster that colour is! 😉