‘Annoying as Hell:’ Texas Tesla Owner Locked Out of Car After Battery Fails in Heat

Elon Musk celebrates Texas

Dennis Hegstad, a Tesla owner from Texas, was left stranded when he couldn’t access his Model 3. His electric vehicle had 130 miles of charge available, but was completely locked up, requiring a tow to a service center. He believes the car’s 12-volt battery failed under the relentless Texas summer heat.

Business Insider reports that Dennis Hegstad, a Tesla Model 3 owner, was recently unable to access his vehicle despite it having a charge. He believes the source of the problem was the failure of the car’s 12-volt battery, which couldn’t withstand the harsh, relentless summer heat of Texas.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 31: Elon Musk attends Heidi Klum's 2022 Hallowe'en Party at Sake No Hana at Moxy LES on October 31, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – OCTOBER 31: Elon Musk attends Heidi Klum’s 2022 Hallowe’en Party at Sake No Hana at Moxy LES on October 31, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images)

A Tesla’s 12-volt battery is a significant component in the vehicle’s ecosystem. It powers various essential features within the car, including the operation of windows and doors. More importantly, it plays a critical role in charging the main battery pack.

In late June, Hegstad found that his car had become completely unresponsive despite having a substantial amount of charge left — enough to cover approximately 130 miles. He couldn’t even unlock the doors, let alone move his EV to a charging station, leaving him with no other option but to call for a tow truck. Reflecting on the experience, Hegstad described the ordeal as “annoying as hell.”

Adding to his frustration was a sense of buyer’s remorse. Hegstad couldn’t shake off the feeling that he had paid a premium for his Tesla, estimating it to be around $15,000 more than what it was worth, especially considering the company’s recent price cuts.

The aftermath of the battery failure was not just limited to the inconvenience and frustration. It also led to additional expenses for Hegstad. He ended up spending about $200 on towing services and an extra $117 to replace the faulty 12-volt battery.

Elon Musk’s Tesla is known for its poor customer service.  Breitbart News recently reported on one case where the company asked a customer whose car was turned into a charred mess by a battery fire to deliver the ruined vehicle to a service depot:

Business Insider reports that in the aftermath of the incident, Malla reached out to Tesla’s customer service for answers. However, he reported that his attempts to communicate with the company were met with silence. Despite contacting the company multiple times, Malla said he received “no follow-ups.”

“One agent I talked to had the audacity to tell me to take my fully burned Tesla to the Tesla recommended servicing center,” Malla said. “How in the world am I going to do that?”

Malla expressed his need for answers from Tesla, not only for his own situation but also to prevent others from experiencing similar incidents. “Yes, insurance will cover the car, but I need to hear from Tesla,” Malla said. “All I need is the answer from them and protect others to not go through the same issue.”

Read more at Business Insider here.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan



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