Do Tesla Vehicles Have a Spare Tire? Do You Need One?
Like most new car manufacturers, Tesla does not include spare tires with their vehicles due to their weight, cost, space and impact on energy efficiency. Tesla’s Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) provides peace of mind by identifying significant pressure changes, however drivers may still choose to carry spare tire kits.
Teslas Don’t Have a Spare Tire
Most new car manufacturers – including Tesla – have recently chosen to cut the fat from spare tires. They are opting not to include spare tires with new vehicles for these reasons:
- To improve energy efficiency. Spare tires are heavy (30-50 lb) and their extra weight reduces energy efficiency. Government regulations are also adding pressure to car manufacturers to improve efficiency.
- To save space. Tires take up valuable interior space if stored inside the vehicle, and would compete with the undercarriage space needed for batteries, if stored externally.
- To save money. Manufacturers save hundreds of dollars per vehicle by not including spare tires.
Top Three Causes of a Flat Tire in Teslas
The most common causes of flat tires in Teslas are:
- Puncture from a nail, shattered glass or other debris. Although punctures often lead to slow leaks that are eventually identified by Tesla’s Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), tires can still deflate suddenly.
- Over- or Under-Inflated Tire Pressure. Tesla reports that under-inflation is the most common reason tires overheat, become damaged or blow out. Under-inflation also reduces range and the tread life of your tires.
- Temperature Variations. An outdoor temperature drop of 6 degrees Celsius (11 degrees Fahrenheit) drops tire pressure by one PSI.
Fortunately, Tesla’s Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) system will monitor the tire pressure and warn drivers of significant changes to tire pressure. You should have enough time to adjust the pressure and make any required repairs before your tire goes flat or blows out.
- Reduce your risk for a flat tire by manually checking tire pressure regularly.
- Act immediately if your Tesla’s Tire Pressure Monitoring System alerts you to a change in pressure.
- Consider carrying a tire repair kit or a spare tire kit.
What to Do If Your Tesla Gets a Flat
If you get a flat tire or your vehicle alerts you to a sudden change in tire pressure, pull over to a safe location and consider one of these options:
Repair or Replace your Tire.
Tesla recommends replacing or repairing damaged tires right away. This may mean using a tire repair kit for small punctures under 6 mm (0.24”) and driving safely to a service centre.
Learn more about tire repair kits and what to do when you have a flat.
Contact Tesla’s Roadside Assistance Service.
If your flat tire impairs your ability to drive safely, contact Tesla’s Roadside Assistance Service. Use your touchscreen or select Roadside>Flat Tire on your Tesla phone app.
Tow Your Tesla to a Service Center.
If you’re calling for a tow, make sure the towing company has experience with Teslas and will use a flat bed truck to transport your vehicle.
Before having your tire changed, ensure the shop has specialized Tesla lift pads, required to safely lift your vehicle without damaging the battery.
What is Tesla’s TPMS?
All Tesla vehicles are equipped with a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), which uses sensors to electronically monitor the pressure of all four tires. TPMS sensors come installed on every Tesla, but if the owner purchases a second set of tires (such as winter tires), they will need to buy 4 additional TPMS sensors for each set of new tires.
The TPMS will display a Tire Pressure Warning on the touchscreen if one of more tires is significantly over- or under-inflated. However, Tesla advises drivers to regularly check tire pressures manually to identify smaller changes in pressure that aren’t yet detected by the TPMS.
How to Check the Tire Pressure on Your Tesla
Tesla recommends regularly checking the tire pressure manually and keeping tires inflated to the pressures shown on the Tire and Loading information label (located on the centre pillar of the driver’s side door).
Current tire pressures are also conveniently displayed on the touchscreen and phone app as part of the vehicle’s Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS).
How to Check Tire Pressure Using the Touchscreen
Select Controls > Service to view the pressure of each tire along with the time your tire pressures were last measured. You can also choose whether you want to display tire pressures using PSI (pounds per square inch) or BAR (metric unit) by touching Controls > Display > Tire Pressure. The touchscreen also displays the recommended cold tire pressures for your specific vehicle, so you can determine how much to inflate your tires.
How to Check Tire Pressure Using the Tesla Phone App
Using the phone app, select Controls. At the top right corner, select the PSI button.
You will now be able to view the specific pressure of each tire.
Does the Tesla Model Y come with a spare tire?
Like most new vehicles, the Tesla Model Y does not come equipped with a spare tire, largely because the extra weight lowers energy efficiency.
Drivers can purchase a spare tire kit or a flat tire repair kit.
Can I purchase a spare tire for my Tesla?
Drivers can purchase spare tire kits to replace blown out or flat tires on their Tesla vehicles. Spares are typically made from aluminum alloy, which is lighter than traditional steel wheels, thereby helping to minimize reduced energy efficiency.
Can I buy a universal spare tire for my Tesla?
Spare tires are designed for the specific model of your Tesla vehicle. Tires need to be the correct size and allow for any special clearance needed for performance brakes. There are no “universal” spare tires.
How much is a spare tire for my Tesla?
The average cost of a spare tire is $430 US. Depending on the model and accessories, the price may be higher or lower. Most spare tires come with a carrying case and all the tools required to change your flat tire.
Can I take my damaged tires to a third party tire shop?
Tesla indicates that flat or damaged tires may be taken to a Tesla service centre or a third party tire repair shop. Ensure non-Tesla repair shops have Tesla lifting pads, or purchase them yourself to keep in your vehicle.
Do Teslas come with a car jack?
Teslas do not come equipped with a car jack (ratcheting scissor jack). Car jacks can be purchased separately.
Do Teslas need special tires?
Tires need to match the model and type of Tesla vehicle in order to perform correctly and safely. Tire size can range from 18”-20” and some wheels need to be designed in order to clear the larger brakes, such as with the Performance Model 3.
Do I need a spare tire for my Tesla?
Tesla drivers can purchase a spare tire for their Tesla, however the extra weight can affect the vehicle’s energy efficiency. Instead, check tire pressures regularly and respond immediately to changes detected by the vehicle’s Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). For extra peace of mind, drivers can carry a flat tire repair kit – especially for long road trips.
Does Tesla pay for flat tires?
Tesla does not pay for the cost of replacing a damaged tire, but their Roadside Assistance Service will cover transportation costs within 50 miles of the vehicle’s location.