Rats! Tesla won’t pay for rodent damage to cars

Posted: July 13, 2021 by oldbrew in humour, Travel


Any Teslas round here? [image credit: Edal Anton Lefterov @ Wikipedia]

A bit of light relief perhaps, unless you’re already one of the victims or could soon become one. Are electric cars more appealing than combustion-engined types to hungry rodents? Check those brake cables.
– – –
Elon Musk may have a rat problem, says The New York Post.

Fans of the South African billionaire’s electric cars say rats, mice and rodents are chomping down on their Teslas.

And despite having dropped tens of thousands of dollars to buy the pricey vehicles, Tesla refuses to cover the damage.

Sarah Williams, a 41-year-old physician who lives in Manhattan and uses her Tesla to commute to work in the Bronx, told The Post of an alarming incident when she took her 2018 Model 3 into Tesla’s Paramus, NJ, dealership in mid-May after her air conditioner had stopped working.

“They opened the glove compartment and a rodent fell out,” she said. “It’s crazy.”

The pest apparently found its way into Williams’ Tesla and gobbled through several internal wires that were insulated with soy rather than oil, which critics claim makes them more appealing to rodents.

When Williams — who paid $59,200 for her car — complained, the company refused to help. The repair has taken more than a month, and estimated costs have soared over $5,000, she said.

Despite repeated promises that the pricey vehicle will be ready soon, Williams was unable to pick up her Tesla at the time of this publication — almost two months later.

“Most auto manufacturers use the soybean vs. oil in their wire insulation for newer vehicles because it is less expensive and better for the environment,” Tesla service adviser Jose Solis wrote in an email to Williams that she shared with The Post.

“The use of this material would not be considered a ‘defect’ in design or use … Considering there are too many factors outside of Tesla’s control we cannot cover this under a warranty or repair.”

Solis is right that it’s not just Tesla.

Continued here.
– – –
RatMat ‘uses a low energy pulse to repel rodents and protect your property.’

  1. Martin says:

    My SUV was running rough one morning so I took it to the shop. They said a rodent had chewed through a cable that controls one of the fuel injectors. They repaired the cable and sprayed the engine compartment with capsaicin to prevent further damage. So far so good since.

  2. Graeme No.3 says:

    Tesla needs to use this – how about a new slogan?
    Tesla, Put a rat in your tank?
    Tesla, the first choice of gourmet rats?
    Nine out of ten rats choose a Tesla?

  3. oldbrew says:

    NY Post’s picture caption: ‘Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who went by the nickname “Muskrat” as a child.’

  4. saighdear says:

    Graeme No.3, : Tha agam na mo thanc…..?

  5. oldbrew says:

    When It’s Cold, Rats Can Crawl Into Your Car … And Snack On It

    Dave Albin joins us. He’s also known as Rat King Dave and runs a website called howtopreventratsfromeatingcarwires.com. Your Highness, Rat King Dave, thanks for being with us.

    DAVE ALBIN: (Laughter) Thanks so much for having me. Appreciate it.
    . . .
    ALBIN: They need a specific environment to breed and to raise their young. When the weather gets colder outside, they need to find alternative shelter. Car engine compartments are perfect for that – engine’s still warm when the car gets back from work or whatnot. And on top of that, rats need to continually chew on things to keep their teeth trimmed. So car wiring is a very good option for them to have.


  6. oldmanK says:

    They say there is no such thing as bad advertising. Tesla is getting it for free.

    Rodents have to keep chewing on something to wear their teeth down (nature did not supply them with tooth files).

    I was advised about using certain telephone wires because a grease used during manufacture was actually poison paste. Experience of rodent damage is common. In my case the pet rabbit that slept under the car first nibbled through the mud flaps before I noticed, and had started on the handbrake cable. The mouse that nibbled through the exciter wires (luckily for us) stayed there after the shutdown. That was more expensive than the Tesla.

  7. Gamecock says:

    A neighbor’s Land Rover suffered significant damage from squirrels eating the wiring. No one else’s (‘Merican) vehicle was affected.

    Can’t wait to see him to tell him his problem is tasty wiring.

  8. Gamecock says:

    A physician who thinks the car builder should be responsible for damage done by her pet rats.

    Hmmm . . . white privilege?

  9. TomO says:

    Weasel damage is the fourth most frequent cause for non-collision auto insurance claims in Germany. Last year, drivers here filed 198,000 claims for weasel-inflicted damage, a 42% increase since 2005. And that probably underestimates the carnage.

    “We only have data from those insurers that offer a weasel policy,” said Henning Engelage, a spokesman for the insurers’ federation.

  10. oldbrew says:

    TomO – first diesels now weasels.

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