Tesla is one of the most recognized brands in the electric vehicle (EV) industry.
With its sleek designs, impressive performance, and innovative features, Tesla has redefined how we think about cars.
But as with any vehicle, certain components require regular maintenance and upkeep, and understanding what fluids a Tesla uses is a critical part of keeping the vehicle running smoothly.
Tesla uses several fluids, including brake fluid, coolant for the battery and drivetrain, and windshield washer fluid. Unlike traditional gas-powered cars, Tesla’s electric drivetrain eliminates the need for many fluids typically used in internal combustion engines.
From the batteries to the brakes, several Tesla systems rely on various types of fluids to operate effectively.
However, unlike traditional gasoline-powered cars, Tesla’s electric drivetrain eliminates the need for many fluids typically used in internal combustion engines.
If you’re a new Tesla owner or are simply curious about the inner workings of these cutting-edge vehicles, read on to learn more about the fluids that keep a Tesla running.
- Do Tesla Cars Use Oil For Lubrication? (Explained For Beginners)
- Does A Tesla Have Any Oil At All? (6 Fluids Explained)
- Do Electric Cars Use Transmission Oil? (Answered)
Does Tesla Need Brake Fluid?
Tesla, like all cars, needs brake fluid.
Tesla uses DOT 3 brake fluid in its vehicles, which is a glycol-based fluid.
This type of brake fluid is widely used in passenger vehicles and has a boiling point of around 401°F (205°C). It is compatible with most brake systems and is relatively inexpensive.
However, it is hygroscopic, which means it absorbs moisture over time, reducing its boiling point and potentially leading to corrosion in the brake system.
Another type of brake fluid commonly used in high-performance vehicles is DOT 4 brake fluid which is glycol-based but has a higher boiling point of around 446°F (230°C ) than DOT 3 brake fluid. This makes it more suitable for high-performance vehicles that generate heat during hard driving.
DOT 4 brake fluid is also hygroscopic but less prone to moisture absorption than DOT 3 brake fluid.
A third type of brake fluid is DOT 5.1, which is also glycol-based but has a boiling point of around 500°F (260°C). It is commonly used in high-performance vehicles that generate even more heat than regular ones.
DOT 5.1 brake fluid is also hygroscopic but more stable and less prone to moisture absorption than DOT 3 and DOT 4 brake fluids.
There is also a non-glycol-based brake fluid called DOT 5, which is silicone-based. It has a boiling point of around 500°F (260°C) and is not hygroscopic. It is mainly used in military and racing applications where compatibility with other fluids is not a concern.
However, it is incompatible with most brake systems and is not commonly used in passenger vehicles.
Do Teslas Use Battery Coolant And What Kind?
There are two types of battery coolant that Tesla has used in their vehicles: Ethylene Glycol-based coolant and Propylene Glycol-based coolant.
- Due to its high heat capacity and low freezing point, ethylene glycol-based coolant is the more commonly used in traditional combustion engine vehicles. It is also the more toxic of the two coolants, making it more dangerous if ingested or leaked into the environment. Tesla has used Ethylene Glycol-based coolant in some of its earlier Model S and Model X vehicles.
- In response to concerns over the toxicity of Ethylene Glycol-based coolant, Tesla switched to Propylene Glycol-based coolant in its newer vehicles, including the Model 3, Model Y, and updated Model S and Model X. Propylene Glycol-based coolant has a lower heat capacity than Ethylene Glycol-based coolant. However, it is still effective at regulating the battery pack’s temperature. It is also less toxic, making it safer for passengers and the environment.
In addition to the type of coolant used, the concentration of the coolant mixture is also important for the performance and safety of the battery.
The coolant concentration should be within the recommended range to ensure optimal heat transfer and prevent the coolant’s freezing or boiling.
In Tesla vehicles, the battery management system typically monitors and adjusts the coolant concentration, which helps maintain the health and performance of the battery pack.
The choice of battery coolant is an important consideration for electric vehicles, as it directly affects the vehicle’s performance, safety, and environmental impact.
Tesla’s switch to Propylene Glycol-based coolant reflects the company’s commitment to improving the sustainability and safety of its vehicles.
Does Tesla Have Windshield Fluid?
There are two types of washer fluids commonly used: summer washer fluid and winter washer fluid.
- Summer washer fluid is typically a water-based solution with a small amount of detergent to help remove dirt and grime from the windshield. It is effective at cleaning the windshield in warm and mild weather conditions. However, summer washer fluid can freeze on the windshield in cold weather and reduce visibility.
- Winter washer fluid is a more concentrated solution containing more alcohol and other additives to prevent freezing in cold weather. It effectively cleans the windshield in below-freezing temperatures and can also help melt any ice or snow accumulated on the windshield. However, winter washer fluid can be more expensive than summer washer fluid due to its higher concentration of additives.
In addition to the type of washer fluid used, the quality of the washer fluid can also affect the performance and longevity of the windshield wipers.
Low-quality or diluted washer fluids can cause streaking, smearing, or damage to the wiper blades, reducing visibility and requiring frequent replacements.
Tesla does not have a specific brand or type of washer fluid required, but it recommends using a high-quality washer fluid compatible with the vehicle’s wiper system.
Some Tesla owners have reported using a premixed windshield washer fluid with a higher alcohol concentration to prevent freezing in colder climates.
Choosing washer fluid is important for maintaining visibility and safety while driving.
Tesla owners should choose a washer fluid that is appropriate for their local weather conditions and is of high quality to ensure optimal performance and longevity of the wiper system.
Do Teslas Use Transmission Fluid?
Tesla cars utilize different transmission fluids to ensure optimal performance and smooth shifting. The two most commonly used transmission fluids in Tesla vehicles are Dexron VI and Mercon LV.
Dexron VI is the latest and most advanced transmission fluid developed by General Motors, which provides superior performance in modern automatic transmission systems.
It is a synthetic fluid that offers excellent wear protection, improved oxidation stability, and resistance to foaming and shear breakdown. Tesla highly recommends its use.
Mercon LV is a synthetic transmission fluid created by Ford and designed for modern automatic transmissions. Tesla recommends it for use in its vehicles.
Mercon LV provides exceptional oxidation resistance and wear protection. It is also specifically formulated to resist foaming and shear breakdown and perform consistently in various operating temperatures.
Additionally, Tesla suggests using Mobil 1 Synthetic ATF (Automatic Transmission Fluid) in their vehicles.
Mobil 1 Synthetic ATF is a fully synthetic transmission fluid that provides outstanding wear protection, oxidation stability, and superior foaming and shear breakdown resistance. It is specifically designed to perform reliably in diverse temperature ranges, making it an ideal choice for Tesla vehicles.
Tesla is one of the most recognized brands in the electric vehicle industry, with innovative designs, features, and performance.
While electric drivetrains eliminate the need for many fluids typically used in gasoline-powered cars, several systems in a Tesla still rely on various fluids to operate effectively. Tesla owners must understand the types of fluids their vehicle requires to keep it running smoothly.
Understanding the fluids Tesla requires, and their importance to the vehicle’s performance and safety is vital for Tesla owners to maintain the longevity of their vehicles.
Tesla uses DOT 3 brake fluid in its vehicles, which is widely used in passenger vehicles and is relatively inexpensive. It also uses both Ethylene Glycol-based and Propylene Glycol-based coolants for its battery.
Regarding windshield washer fluid, Tesla has no specific brand or type requirement. Still, it recommends using a high-quality washer fluid compatible with the vehicle’s wiper system. Propylene Glycol-based coolant is less toxic, making it safer for passengers and the environment.