How do I reboot a Tesla 3?

I love my Tesla, but yesterday, when I tried to head off to work, the touchscreen wouldn’t respond at all. I was luckily able to catch a bus, but the bus stop is way too far to walk to every single day. Plus, I want to be able to drive my car! How can I reboot my Tesla Model 3?

I’m so sorry that happened! While Teslas will sometimes experience glitches, I’m happy to say there are three ways to reboot a Tesla 3:
  • A soft reboot
  • A full vehicle soft reboot
  • A hard reboot
The soft reboot is what you’ll want to try first. This simply restarts the software while maintaining the flow of electricity and is similar to restarting a glitchy computer or phone. Here’s how to do a soft reboot:
  • Press and hold both scroll wheels simultaneously. Wait for the screen to turn off before you release them.
  • Wait between 10 seconds and a minute. The screen and instrument cluster should refresh, and you should be all set to go.
The full vehicle soft reboot, on the other hand, involves shutting off the car’s power. To do a full vehicle reboot, follow these steps:
  • Make sure the car is in park and every door is shut.
  • Power off the car. Go to Controls > Safety and Security > Power Off.
  • Wait for two to five minutes. After at least two minutes (and preferably five), press the brake or open the door to start the car back up.
The hard reboot should only be done if you are familiar with high-voltage systems, as they can be very dangerous, and only if you’re unable to get to a mechanic or auto body shop. Remember that if you’re unsure about more complex car maintenance, it’s always better to take your car to the mechanic rather than try to fix something that you don’t fully understand.
However, if you’re out of options, here’s how to do a hard reboot:
  • Turn off the climate control system.
  • Fully open the driver’s window to avoid being locked out, and then open the front trunk.
  • Turn off the car.
  • Remove the top panel from the front trunk. This should give you access to the battery.
  • Disconnect the battery terminal. Use a 10-mm socket wrench to disconnect the terminal and isolate it from the post.
  • Open the passenger side of the back door. To avoid getting seatbelts stuck or tangled, fasten all seatbelt buckles.
  • Reach under the seats to release the clips holding them in place. After that, lift the seats and remove the foam cover over the wire harness.
  • Disconnect and unplug the wire harness. At this point, you should hear a noise from the main contactors.
  • Wait for two to five minutes. Once the time has elapsed, replace everything you removed.
And you should be all set!
Once you’ve sorted out the reboot, you may want to consider making sure your car insurance policy is in good condition, too. If you want to make sure you’re getting the best deal on the coverage you need, check out the Jerry app.
We make it easy to get the best price: simply fill out some information about yourself and your car, and we’ll get you personalized quotes from top providers. All you need to do is pick the plan that works best for you. And if you find one you prefer over your current plan, we’ll help you with every step of switching over, too.
Best of luck with rebooting your car—you’ve got this!
Ben Guess
Answered on Jan 14, 2022
Ben has a BA in Journalism + Design from The New School, as well as three years’ experience in content writing and data journalism. They are deeply interested in how the car industry intersects with issues of inequity in the world, as well as in making auto insurance more accessible through writing. When they’re away from the keyboard, they enjoy baking, embroidering, and playing Dungeons and Dragons with friends. They are based in Boston, Massachusetts.

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