Some Tesla Drivers Can’t Keep Warm in Brutal Winter Weather

This winter is one for the books even though it has just begun. Winter creates tough conditions for drivers because of extreme cold and occasional snowfalls. Winter is especially tough on electric vehicles. Electric vehicle batteries struggle in extreme temperatures and their overall battery capacities are often affected. Apparently, EV batteries aren’t the only issues that owners have to deal with in the winter. Here’s why some Tesla drivers can’t keep warm throughout this brutal season.

Tesla heat pumps are failing at the worst times possible

Tesla Model 3 electric vehicles at Tesla's gigafactory.
Tesla Model 3 vehicles | Xinhua/Ding Ting via Getty Images

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Some Tesla owners are complaining about heat pump failures this winter. According to Electrek, some Tesla drivers have been experiencing heat pump failures since 2021. The heat pump failure affects newer Tesla Model Y and Tesla Model 3 EVs.

The failure is brought on by extremely cold temperatures that ultimately result in drivers completely losing the ability to heat their vehicles. You can imagine how this would be inconvenient as the world experiences record high and low temperatures brought on by a climate crisis that is getting increasingly more dangerous.

While temperartures have to be remarkably low to affect the heat pump of the Model Y and Model 3, winter has only just begun. Faulty heat pumps are a major safety issue in colder regions, especially if small children are frequently passengers of the pricey EVs.

Tesla is addressing the issue using an over-the-air software update but the problem may actually be the hardware of the vehicles. Will Tesla owners make it through the winter with few complaints, or will they give the brand the cold shoulder after experiencing this bone-chilling issue?

Electric vehicle technology still has a long way to go

A Volkswagen electric vehicle battery.
A Volkswagen electric vehicle battery | Sebastian Kahnert/picture alliance via Getty Images

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Electric vehicle technology is still in its infancy. That being said, automakers will need to make adjustments as problems arise. Even huge automakers like General Motors struggle with issues with the new tech. The Chevy Bolt battery debacle won’t soon be forgotten by consumers.

The good news is that automakers are aware of the problems that consumers have with EV batteries and tech. Companies like Toyota have specificially developed batteries and systems to overcome typical performance issues related to high and low temperatures.

Should you be afraid to buy an electric vehicle?

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Toyota’s new BEV platform proves that automakers are aware of the challenges that electric vehicle batteries face. After some trial and error, most popular automakers will have to account for how extreme temperatures can negatively impact EV performance.

If you’re worried about the practicality of EVs, now probably isn’t the best time to purchase a brand new vehicle. Electric vehicle technology is improving, but it still has a long way to go until most consumers consider EVs to be as practical and reliable as gas-powered vehicles.

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