Tesla's Autowipers Don't Work in the Rain and Owners Have Had Enough of Them

Tesla’s Autowipers don’t work in the rain 6 photos
Photo: @greentheonly via Twitter
Tesla’s Autowipers don’t work in the rainTesla’s Autowipers dry-wipe in sunny weatherTesla sensor array2017 Tesla Model X2017 Tesla Model X
Automatic wipers and automatic lights are among the most popular features of modern vehicles. Nevertheless, Tesla owners complain that these features are broken on their cars. While Automatic High Beam has improved recently, the Autowipers continue to make Tesla owners angry in the rain.
Convenience features are popular with car buyers, who try to improve their experience behind the wheel with all sorts of automatic functions. Automatic headlights help illuminate the road without blinding other drivers, automatic wipers clean the windshield in the rain, and automatic climate control is a set-and-forget feature that takes care of thermal comfort without user intervention. Nevertheless, living with a broken air conditioning unit is possible, but non-functional wipers can affect safety and make driving more difficult in adverse weather.

Automatic wipers rely on an optical sensor to detect raindrops on the windshield. The more raindrops, the less light gets reflected by the windshield surface, and this info is used to adjust the wiper’s speed. The system usually works reliably, even in budget cars, so few people care about this feature. Except when it’s not working, of course. Surprisingly, the automatic wipers function is one of the sore spots of Tesla cars, which is unexpected considering all the technology crammed inside.

Many Tesla owners complained for a long time about the Autowipers not working as they should. They tend to dry-wipe the windshield when there is no raindrop and don’t work when it’s raining. This has been recently revealed by Tesla white hat hacker Green (@greentheonly), who drives a 2020 Tesla Model X Long Range+. Although his car has the option to adjust Autowipers sensitivity, this simply doesn’t work.

Tesla Model X also offers the option to continuously wipe the windshield. Nevertheless, Autosteer requires wipers to be set to Auto without the possibility of changing this setting. When it rains, it’s either wipers or Autopilot, which is kind of silly. Of course, the driver can trigger a single wipe by pushing the button at the end of the stalk. There’s another problem, though, because doing so will activate the wipers to their highest speed setting, which is also annoying. Many Tesla owners report not using the Autopilot when it’s raining because of that, which defeats the purpose.

This problem appears connected to the new set of sensors introduced with HW3 because it’s not affecting older models. As somebody pointed out, the rain sensor is positioned in the wrong spot at the top of the windshield, where the wind pushes the raindrops out of its way. This makes the lower part of the windshield to be all wet before the rain sensor even gets some raindrops. Nevertheless, Green explains that the Autowipers used to work well in the past with the same hardware setup, which points to a software problem. Hopefully, Tesla will fix it in a future software update.

If you liked the article, please follow us:  Google News icon Google News Youtube Instagram
About the author: Cristian Agatie
Cristian Agatie profile photo

After his childhood dream of becoming a "tractor operator" didn't pan out, Cristian turned to journalism, first in print and later moving to online media. His top interests are electric vehicles and new energy solutions.
Full profile


Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories