Tesla’s struggles in the realm of automotive fans have been well documented, but one man was fed up with the lackluster support he received, so he decided to take the repairs of his Model S into his own hands. Greg Furstenwerth purchased his Tesla Model S back in 2013 and was one of the first people in Hawaii to own one of the new electric cars. However, Furstenwerth says his relationship with the company changed after the car was no longer under warranty. Whereas the company previously provided roadside support and took care of any complaints, once the warranty period expired all interactions with Tesla disappeared.
Furstenwerth says he was treated as though he didn’t own a Tesla vehicle. Tesla’s out of warranty service says owners should go through an authorized service dealer to take care of problems, but this can involve setting up an appointment more than a month in advance and taking time off from work to deal with the issue. Furstenwerth lives on a small island outside of Seattle and says the Tesla Rangers service was not offered to him because he is outside of the warranty period. He decided to take the issue into his own hands and fix it himself, but he soon discovered that aftermarket Tesla parts are so rare that some people reverse engineer the parts and 3D print them to fix problems with their vehicle. DIYers know that when it comes to saving money on automobiles, not only do you shop around for the best price for the car purchase to start, get the best car insurance quotes for your money, as well as shopping online for parts, so you can save every dollar you can, but this is a new one when it comes to figuring out how to repair this electric vehicle.
Furstenwerth taught himself to fix the troubles with his Model S by taking it apart and putting it back together again multiple times. He found available parts from small suppliers online and fixed all of his problems himself. Some of the problems he was experiencing with his vehicle include failing door handles, tail lights that don’t work, and a passenger window that stopped working. He estimates that all of the problems that went wrong with his device would cost him around $14,000 to fix if he had taken the car to an authorized retailer. He was nearly ready to destroy the car before taking it apart and realizing that Musk has built a car that is as easy to put together as a Lego set if you have the right parts. He describes it as a Lego car, saying that if you can put together a Lego set, you can put together a Model S.
Despite his troubles with the company and their out of warranty service, Furstenwerth says he still has high hopes for Tesla’s success as an electric vehicle manufacturer. He’s managed to put another 2,000 miles on his Model S after his home repairs and has driven from Seattle to Detroit, Michigan to prove that electric vehicle owners really shouldn’t worry about range anxiety. It just goes to show that even as technology marches forward, we’re taking two steps back for people who like to repair things on their own.