Hot Weather Best Practices

To ensure that Model 3 provides you with the best ownership experience possible in hot ambient conditions, follow these best practices.

Before Driving

There are several ways to prepare your vehicle for a drive, without having to get into an already hot vehicle:

  • Precondition the cabin by moving the direction of air flow from the vents, and turn the seat heaters on or off. In the mobile app, navigate to Climate to customize the temperature at which you want to cool the cabin.
  • Touch Schedule, available on both the Charging and Climate Control screens, to set a time when you want your vehicle to be ready to drive (see Scheduled Charging and Scheduled Departure).
  • Enable Cabin Overheat Protection, which prevents the cabin from getting too warm in hot ambient conditions. You can choose whether you want the A/C or just the fan to run when the temperature in the cabin exceeds 105° F (40° C) or the selected temperature (if available).
  • In the mobile app, navigate to Controls to vent the windows.
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Tesla recommends activating climate settings at least 30-45 minutes before departure (see Operating Climate Controls). Preconditioning times depend on outside temperature and other factors. The mobile app will notify you once your vehicle has reached the desired preconditioning temperature.

After Driving

Leave Model 3 plugged in when not in use, especially if using Preconditioning or Cabin Overheat Protection. This uses the charging system, rather than the battery itself, to maintain a comfortable temperature (see High Voltage Battery Information). In addition, there are several ways to minimize a hot cabin:

  • Before leaving your vehicle (to run errands, for example), use Dog Mode to keep the cabin cool for pets or perishable goods. See Keep Climate On, Dog, and Camp for more information.
  • Tesla recommends turning the air conditioning off approximately 30 seconds before pressing Park to reduce puddling below the vehicle.
  • Park in the shade to help reduce power consumption and maintain cooler cabin temperatures.
  • Use a sun shade (available on the Tesla Shop) if you have to park outside in the sun.
  • When parked, plug in Model 3 and Schedule your charging. Your vehicle determines the appropriate time to begin charging so it is complete during off-peak hours. The cabin and Battery are also prepared by your set departure time. For more information, see Scheduled Charging and Scheduled Departure.


When using Trip Planner or navigating to a Supercharger station, your vehicle automatically prepares the Battery for most efficient charging. In extreme heat, you may not see the message that the vehicle is preconditioning the Battery while navigating to a Supercharger, but it is still preparing the Battery for charging.
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Tesla recommends using Trip Planner to navigate to a charging location for at least 30-45 minutes before arrival to ensure optimal Battery temperature and charging conditions. If the drive to the charging location is less than 30-45 minutes, consider preconditioning the Battery before driving (see Before Driving).

If possible, leave your vehicle plugged into a charger whenever not in use, even in warm weather, especially if using Preconditioning or Cabin Overheat Protection.


If you leave Model 3 parked for an extended period of time, plug the vehicle into a charger to prevent normal range loss and to keep the Battery at an optimal temperature. Your vehicle is safe to stay plugged in for any length of time.

When not in use, Model 3 enters a sleep mode to conserve energy. Reduce the number of times you check your vehicle’s status on the mobile app, as this automatically wakes up your vehicle and starts normal energy consumption.