The Tesla Service Center

El Brown
2 min readMar 19, 2021


With four problems identified when I took delivery of my Model Y, I was hoping to get mobile service, where the issues would be addressed in my own driveway. Unfortunately, the exurb where I live isn’t in the service area. I had to make an appointment at the Tesla service center in Tempe for two weeks later. They don’t do Saturday appointments like every other carmaker, so you better have a day off work or a flexible schedule to get your Tesla fixed.

Having previously owned a BMW, I thought I knew what to expect when going in for service at a luxury car dealer. Tesla disappointed in every way. Long-ass drive aside, the Tesla service center is kind of a dump. No complimentary high-end coffee or Danishes like at Chapman BMW. No comfortable waiting area with shiny new cars to ogle like at Surprise Honda. Just an uncomfortable chair, worn social distancing decals stuck to a dusty floor, and a 4 hour wait. Truly substandard.

It was neat to see cars silently moving through the service center. The electric thing is still a kick even though I’ve been driving mostly electric for three years now.

After the wait, all my issues were fixed. The headliner was replaced. I can’t even identify the spot where the driver’s side door hinge was scratched all the way to bare metal. The passenger side front window was better, and the offensive crinkling sound from the wheels was gone.

The latter was the biggest head-scratcher. You can hear the noise in this YouTube video.

My service rep said the clips that hold the Gemini wheel covers in place were responsible. He had no answer when I asked how a car could be delivered with such an issue. No attention to detail.

Later that day, I chuckled to myself after catching my reflection in the glass while in the drive-thru at Panera Bread. It was a peak-suburbs moment. Despite the hassle of having to take the Model Y in for service before making my first payment, I love my car. It is a modern marvel.


Up Next: The Upside