Legally reviewed by: Jessica Anvar Stotz, JD, MBA
In the world of electric vehicles, Tesla has long been a pioneer–consistently pushing the boundaries of technology and sustainability. However, even industry leaders are not immune to issues, and in 2023, Tesla faced a significant challenge with a brake fluid recall that affected thousands of vehicles.
Here, we’ll delve into the details of the 2023 Tesla brake fluid recall, its causes, consequences, and how Tesla responded to address the issue.
Which Tesla models are being recalled for the faulty Tesla brake fluid readings?
Brake fluid is a hydraulic fluid that transfers force when you press the brake pedal to the brake components, ultimately allowing your vehicle to come to a stop. It is a vital part of any vehicle’s braking system, ensuring safety and performance.
Recently the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced that Tesla will recall over 54,000 Tesla Model X vehicles built between 2021 and 2023 because of the failure of the vehicle controller to detect low brake fluid, which can result in the vehicle failing to display a warning light.
Without a warning light indicator, consumers may inadvertently use their SUVs without being aware of low brake fluid levels, potentially compromising the effectiveness of the braking system. Low brake fluid levels can be a substantial safety hazard as it may impact braking performance and increase the risk of a crash.
While no accidents or injuries related to the issue were reported at the time of the recall, the consequences of brake fluid problems can be severe if not addressed promptly. Reduced braking performance can lead to longer stopping distances, increasing the risk of accidents, particularly in emergency situations.
How do I know if my Tesla is part of the recall?
Owners who are affected by the Tesla Model X recall are to be alerted of the recall in a letter that is expected to be mailed on December 12th. However, if consumers suspect their vehicle is part of the recall, they can call Tesla at 877-798-3752. Tesla’s internal recall number for this issue is SB-23-00-005.
Will Tesla fix the problem for me?
The manufacturer claims to have published an over-the-air update that should resolve the issue. Despite this update, owners of potentially affected Tesla Model X vehicles will be notified by mail anyway.
Tesla reports that because of the over-the-air update, a service visit is not necessary as the condition has been corrected with the software update. Owners, however, need to install OTA software release 2023.32.7 or a later to ensure the update propagates to their vehicle.
What should I do if I have experienced repeat issues with the brake fluid readings?
If you have experienced issues with the brake fluid detection system in your Tesla Model X, make sure you have installed the latest software update. If the issue persists, take your Tesla Model X to your closest Tesla dealership to have it inspected and repaired.
Brake fluid detection issues are a serious safety concern and should be addressed promptly as they post risks to all drivers on the road.
Are other Tesla models affected by this recall?
No other Tesla models are affected by this recall, as the manufacturer has only identified the problem in the Model X.
Earlier this year however, Tesla issued a recall for over 350,000 Model X, Model S, and Model Y vehicles because of issues related to its experimental driver assistance software. In that recall, the manufacturer also released an over-the-air software update, providing a solution for consumers without them having to take their vehicle to have physical repairs performed.
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