Cold Weather Best Practices Tesla Model Y

The suggested practises listed below can help you have the greatest possible ownership experience in tough cold weather conditions.

Before Driving

Warm the cabin and the battery before leaving for the best range and performance. There are various options for pre-conditioning your Model Y:
  • Mobile app preconditioning: Navigate to Climate > Turn On in the mobile app and choose the temperature at which you wish to heat the cabin, which will also warm the Battery as needed.
  • Mobile app defrost: To melt snow, ice, and frost on the windshields, driver and passenger windows, mirrors, and charge port, go to Climate > Defrost on the mobile app. The battery will warm up as needed as well. Note: Tesla suggests turning on the climate controls at least 30-45 minutes before leaving. The length of time it takes to precondition depends on the outside temperature and other factors. 
  • Scheduled Departure: Use this feature to select a time for your car to be ready to drive. See Scheduled Charging and Scheduled Departure.

When snow and ice build up on your car, moving parts like door handles, windows, mirrors, and wipers can become stuck.


Door Handles

If the door handles are frozen in place, press firmly on the innermost section of the door handle to break the ice.



  • Go to Climate > Defrost on the mobile app, as previously mentioned. Your car heats the driver and passenger windows to assist melt any ice that is preventing them from moving.
  • When the temperature outside is cold, the Model Y adjusts the window orientation slightly to make it easier to open the doors.
  • Schedule a service appointment through the Tesla mobile app to get your windows hydrophobic coated for a little cost.


Turn off Auto-Fold Mirrors by going to Controls > Mirrors > Auto-Fold > ON if ice buildup is suspected when parked. Exterior side mirrors can be prevented from folding or unfolding due to ice.

Note: During preconditioning or when the rear defroster is turned on, the side mirrors automatically heat up as needed.


If you expect snow or ice to accumulate while parked, go to Controls > Service > Wiper Service Mode > ON. This positions your wipers towards the windshield, allowing them to defrost while the windshield does so.


Winter Tires and Tire Chains

  • In snowy or icy situations, use winter tires to improve grip. Winter tires can be purchased from See Seasonal Tire Types.
  • When driving in snowy or icy weather, tire chains provide additional traction. During the winter months, check your local regulations to see if tire chains are advised or necessary.

See Also

Tesla Model Y - Cold Weather Best Practices While Driving

Tesla Model Y - Cold Weather Best Practices After Driving


Disclaimer :
Tesla, Inc. was not involved in the development of this document and did not provide any input or otherwise edit, review or authorize it.