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Thread: Power drain while idle (Vampire Load)

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    Signature P85+ #00463 dennis's Avatar
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    Power drain while idle (Vampire Load)

    We've had our Model S for about 10 days and love it! One thing I noticed is that if the car is not used or charged for 24 hours it loses about 10 miles of indicated range. This is without opening the doors or otherwise turning the car "on" in any way.

    Is this normal behavior? Any idea why it uses 3 kwh per 24 hours?

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    Roadster 919, S 2006 Doug_G's Avatar
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    This has been noted on other threads. Reportedly Tesla is working on firmware upgrades to improve it. The extra draw is due to the need for the car to boot up immediately; they're keeping more stuff running than they originally planned on. With judicious idle power management they should be able to resolve this.
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    Member Tommy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug_G View Post
    This has been noted on other threads. Reportedly Tesla is working on firmware upgrades to improve it. The extra draw is due to the need for the car to boot up immediately; they're keeping more stuff running than they originally planned on. With judicious idle power management they should be able to resolve this.
    Hope they fix it ASAP, it's an extra $14 a month draw at my lowest rates. That's before it even travels a foot outside the garage.

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    +1 Tommy, Doug_G: I was surprised at the $14/month cost. Did the math myself and I agree with your numbers. My power in the Pacific Northwest is cheaper at 0.09/kWh but still its $8 per month. Whoa, yes I also hope this is remedied.

    Its like running 500W electric 'space heater' in your garage 6 hours every day! (3000/500=6). Atsa lotsa watsa!

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    V1538 Zextraterrestrial's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tommy View Post
    Hope they fix it ASAP, it's an extra $14 a month draw at my lowest rates. That's before it even travels a foot outside the garage.
    ~$30 for me
    - 'Joules' 12/1/12 - 28550mi @ 368Whr/mi Zextraterrestials S (tory)

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    Roadster #1144 + Sig 114 dsm363's Avatar
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    Once the proximity sensor senses you getting next to the car, it should have a few seconds at least to turn some of the other systems on. Hopefully then can reduce the energy used just sitting there.
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    subscribed =)

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    S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13 jerry33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsm363 View Post
    Once the proximity sensor senses you getting next to the car, it should have a few seconds at least to turn some of the other systems on. Hopefully then can reduce the energy used just sitting there.
    Even without the proximity sensors, if it started powering up to off from sleep mode when the driver's door was opened, it would still have plenty of time to do that. A precedent is the Prius brake pump. It starts as soon as the driver's door is opened to pressurize the power brake system. Works fine. And using the driver's door opening (or unlocking) as the trigger might be better than a proximity sensor because you likely don't want the car using power if you're just walking by it to take out the trash or something.
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    My E60 BMW (2006) attempts to balance wake-up time with battery consumption. 80% of the time the iDrive screen takes 5-10 seconds to come alive, other times its like a full reboot (20-30 seconds). I appreciate Elon's effort to always make it 'instant' but this is a solution that probably has unacceptable cost.

    Will be interesting to see what Tesla's approach to balance wake-up vs. battery consumption turns out to be.

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    Roadster 919, S 2006 Doug_G's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pilotSteve View Post
    Will be interesting to see what Tesla's approach to balance wake-up vs. battery consumption turns out to be.
    Most microprocessors have low-power idle modes, sometimes various alternative modes, where the processor goes to sleep until an interrupt occurs. If they can put processors to sleep this way then they can have very low-power idle and instant wake-up. They might have to do some firmware magic to get it to work, but that's a "simple matter of software" (quotes are for irony purposes). That's what "sleep" mode is on your notebook computer.

    Another alternative is to write the image of the computer memory out to nonvolatile storage. That's what your notebook computer does in "hibernate" mode. Not quite as fast to boot up, but faster than a full restart. Mind you, the Model S has flash memory, not disks, and there may not be enough storage to do that. Even if there is enough storage, there are issues about flash memory durability etc.
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