Don’t Replace Tesla Battery Coolant! [Here’s Why]

Some of you might want to know more about the replacement process to take things into your hand and cut the expense as much as possible after seeing the Tesla low coolant warning on the screen.

Before you guys do anything, know that DIY Tesla battery coolant replacement isn’t suggested. Instead, you should call Tesla to fix the bug which takes around $200 – $900.

It’s because the coolant (Tesla use) doesn’t match with other fluids found in the store or auto shop. I understand it seems expensive, and you want to know the whole story to get convinced. So today, let’s help you figure that out!

Tesla Battery Coolant

Tesla Battery Coolant Replacement Is Prohibited!

The battery coolant that Tesla use is a very special kind of fluid that differs in formulation from other types. I’ll suggest you check what fluids does a Tesla have to understand this better.

Coming to the point, if you try changing the fluid, the Tesla radiator/coolant will degrade and show weird behavior. 

As a short-term solution, this action might seem easy and problem-solving but the coolant will break down chemically and you’ll later require to change the whole cooling system. And that will cost more than thousands of dollars.

So, what do you need to do if not trying the DIY technique? When the coolant seems leaking or showing an error message on the screen, do the following things:

  • If you are driving the Tesla and the message pop on the display, then stop the car right there.
  • Check the fluid level of the coolant. If it shows leakage or low coolant, then turn on your phone and click on the Tesla app > Service.
  • Follow the on-screen prompt.
  • Wait for them to respond by email or phone call.
  • After appointing the meeting, go to the Service Center. Be sure to bring the key fob and key card to the Tesla Service Center.

Digging The Tesla Battery Coolant Replacement Cost

Most of the time, Tesla coolant replacement would cost not more than $200 to $900 based on the damage and difficulty of the labor.

If it’s about coolant drain and refill, then Tesla Service Center will take around $200 – $250 counting labor. 

However, the replacement of battery coolant will require up to $600 – $900 where they change the old radiator with a new one and then refill the fluid. It can be less or higher than the mentioned amount if the labor is difficult.

How Often Do You Change Tesla Coolant?

In previous times, Tesla suggested changing the coolant every 3 – 4 years by draining and then refilling the fluid. This thing is changed in the recent period as they edit this out from the owner’s manual.

After 2016, Tesla advice to never change the battery coolant in most situations. It’s because Tesla cars use batteries to operate (electric power instead of gas power) that seem to stay cool in all scenarios, unlike motor cars.

Due to this sole benefit, they guarantee that the battery coolant will last for life and won’t require replacement.

Do Tesla Batteries Have Liquid Cooling?

If you are thinking about whether does Tesla use liquid cooling, the answer is a simple no! Tesla Model 3, Y, X, and S batteries don’t use liquid cooling which contains only water.

In the MX, M3, and MS, the cars use G-48 ethylene-glycol fluid in battery coolant that contains 60% ethylene glycol and 40% purified water to ensure ideal operation.

On the other than, the MY cars use blue G-48 and orange-red HTF-LS fluids that include 50% antifreeze with 50% purified water. That means Tesla cars don’t have a liquid cooling system in the battery.

The Quantity of Coolant In A Tesla

In all series, Tesla cars have up to 17 – 19 liters of coolant in the battery system. However, some of them can contain 11 liters of coolant. The amount of coolant can differ in the Tesla batteries based on the manufactured date.

You Can Check Battery Coolant Level In Tesla

Yep, one can check the battery coolant level which takes around 5 minutes to do at home. Let me show you the procedure below:

  • Use the key fob, mobile, or touchscreen to open the frunk.
  • Pull up the maintenance panel upward after releasing the clips. The tiny clips hold the panel into the top section.
  • Unlock the clips on the HVAC intake trim panel to expose the 2 hidden bolts.
  • Use a 10 mm socket or ratchet wrench to remove these bolts. You can also use a screwdriver if doesn’t have a wrench.
  • Remove the carpet from the cabin storage area. You’ll find 2 similar bolts.
  • Take these out using the same tool.
  • Detach the latch trim panel using a pry bar. With the 10 mm ratchet wrench, unscrew the 2 bolts. Ensure to remove the wiring harness plug.
  • Take out the bolt near the brake location.
  • Use a pry bar or your hand to pull out the front tub. Detach the cabin intake trim panel.
  • Wear gloves and use cloth on top to remove the cap of the coolant.
  • Get a dipstick and insert it inside the coolant tank to understand the level of fluid.
  • After knowing the level, put everything back in place.

Overall Thoughts

The Tesla battery coolant replacement is not recommended by the manufacturer. It might be bad news for DIYers. But if you really don’t want to cause harm to this expensive vehicle, better not take any risk.

Also coolant degradation can be much complicated than you think, and the car’s performance may get severely affected by any negative trick.

So I hope this guide helps and you don’t consider anything like this. You can precondition the battery and take similar maintenance seriously instead.

See You In My Next Guide!

Leave a Comment