Hybrids & Electrics

This Tesla Owner Wants a $4,280 Refund After a ‘Nightmare’ Butt Dial

Butt-dialing is the technological curse that hits us all from time to time. Most of the time it results in a hilarious story, like when you call your mom accidentally. Then there the horror stories like when a man butt-dialed his Tesla app, and it ended up making purchases. CNBC reports that it was a simple mistake that the man is still trying to get rectified.

There’s new possibilities when butt-dialing

There’s nothing cheap about Tesla. Whether it’s the MSRP or repairs, anyone who purchases a Tesla knows they’re going to invest a lot of money. What most people may not expect is a massive bill for a unwanted purchase.

In an interview with CNBC, Dr Vaziri said, “My phone was in my jeans. I took it out, put it on this charger that comes with your Tesla and that’s it. A minute later? I got the text. I’ve never purchased anything through the Tesla app before.”

It only took seconds for Vaziri to be charged $4,280, but getting a refund was another story. He immediately called his local Tesla dealership, who gave him the number for the Tesla Customer Service hotline.

From there, he was instructed to merely hit the refund button on the Tesla App. The problem was that there is no refund button on the Tesla App. After explaining this, Vaziri was instructed to call his local dealership.

Tesla had Vaziri running in circles, and never did give him a refund. He was forced to do a stop payment with his credit card company, because Tesla wouldn’t work with him.

This has happened to Tesla drivers before

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This isn’t the first time Tesla owners have accidentally butt-dialed and ended up with massive charges. Just check out Twitter for nightmarish stories of people who have gotten the runaround from Tesla when it comes to getting a refund.

It’s been happening since January 2020, which begs the question of what changed. Twitter has exploded with complaints of butt-dialing costs, and it hasn’t gotten any better. It also doesn’t look like anyone will be getting their refunds anytime soon. 

Is there a way to fight butt-dialing chargers?

Everyone has heard horror stories about the toddler who spent tons of money while playing a game on the iPad. Fancy log in codes, child proof locks, and parental controls mean nothing when a toddler needs extra lollipops to beat that Candy Crush level. Parents have had to fight hard to get their money back, and Tesla seems to be even worse to deal with than Apple or Android.

So far, Tesla doesn’t have an easy way to get a refund. Unless you can get Elon Musk’s attention on Twitter, most owners haven’t received a refund.

Apple reported to CNBC that this shouldn’t be happening because the iPhone requires a facial ID or password, but some owners have reported that’s not the case with the Tesla App.

Stefan Peterson tweeted out, “Just butt-purchased (like butt-dialed) a $2000 upgrade to my 

@Tesla Model 3. Blows my mind that they don’t require a password to confirm that purchase. Already filed for a refund but we will see if they allow it.”

After Tweeting out, Peterson got a refund, but many customers aren’t. There have been a couple of changes from Tesla, but many think it’s not enough. Owners now have two days to get a refund if they make a purchase by accident. To make sure that no one gets surprised with a massive bill, owners are notified by email the same day that a purchase is made 

Some think this isn’t enough, and believe that the process could be a lot easier to both prevent unwanted purchases and get refunds. So far, that hasn’t happened. It seems the lesson from Tesla users who have gotten their money back is to make a scene on Twitter, or Tesla will happily ignore you.