Tesla’s Summon Needs To Be Mission Impossible Ready To Satisfy All Customers

JAN 28 2016 BY MARK KANE 52

What Tesla's Summon (beta) needs to fully support my tight garage

What Tesla’s Summon (beta) needs to fully support my tight garage

Tesla’s summoning feature, available as Beta in 7.1 software update, is a swell addition, but some of the Tesla owners have set the bar much higher than others, and build real obstacle courses – not without  reason.

Steve Brand released a video title “What Tesla’s Summon (beta) needs to fully support my tight garage.” The video presents the problem of entering a garage in hardcore mode.

He had several issues because there is not much space in any of the dimensions. To be able to park and open the doors on both sides, the car need to go all the way forward and stand on the wooden planks with raised suspension.

The Tesla Model S seems to be unable to drive onto the wood in summon mode and probably will not be brave enough to park so close to the wall. Automation of such a complicated scenario would be very tricky.

Maybe it’s time to consider a contest for the most challenging garage that passes the summoning test?

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52 Comments on "Tesla’s Summon Needs To Be Mission Impossible Ready To Satisfy All Customers"

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Wash your car next time you do a video.

Silly. Just shave off some of the wood that is square and make it a gentle incline, then it will easily ramp up the wood. Actually this whole setup is sort of dumb.

Btw that pole is movable as it is a telescoping support. The purport and reasoning behind this video, that Tesla should try to accommodate every jackass setup in every garage, so that the summons and park features can be used, is ridiculous.

Yep, and anyone who can afford a Tesla along with respect for its technology should look into engineered beams vs the old telescoping pole. Whether you solve the moment arm with a TGI beam or a true engineered span, it would both eliminate the pole and the need to creep forward.

OR you can blame on Tesla… jeeesh!

Or just make the passenger step into the car from outside of the garage. Why would you want to summon the car, while the passenger is already in the car but you aren’t?

Agree, the boards are silly, if he shaves an angle on the boards’ approach ,
,instead of having them being 90% as they now are ,,This would solve his approach problem, at the approach, the car will glide over them smoothly & make it easy on the suspension as well!…Problem solved,…….Hope this helps the dude ……

> “Actually this whole setup is sort of dumb.”

That’s what I was thinking. I would remove part of the foundation (lip), and move the post 6 inches.

True, except the beam which the pole supports is too short. It’s only a partial beam.
I’d chip off the lip though, as you suggest and just get rid of the boards.

No, you are right there is another support column later, just move the pole over.

A simple fix would be to cut the ends of the boards at a taper with a miter box or saw. You would want a really shallow angle but it would be enough that the car would interpret it as a slope rather than a curb.

ffbj beat me to it

Barely. It was such an obvious solution. I mean really.

The contractor who built that garage in the first place seems to be the problem here. This homeowner has gone out of his way to re-engineer using the garage for a sedan. With the impact marks in the stall over, and the fact that the NEMA 14-50 outlet is not showing any conduit, I half-wonder if this fellow shortened his garage as a remodel that he didn’t think through very well. He certainly has the skills if he moved posts and built ramps and what amounts to permanent wheel chocks.

You would think someone that can afford a Tesla Model S could afford to do some remodeling on his garage to make things fit.

No problem to me on the 14-50R.

IF this is an unattached garage, then obviously the power just comes in from the outside. In fact his arrangement seems to be ready for the next software release – have the car spit out the plug if its summoned. Since, in his garage, the car must pull considerably forward, you’d think the incline could ‘utilize’ this ‘excess distance and be gradual enough not to confuse the car. I assume the orange extension cord helps make the electric opener function.

This is not a auto-summon issue, this is a guy with a very tight garage with some very odd support/foundation compared to the norm you will see in a “standard” garage.

Do these issues exist? yes…. Is it Tesla’s fault you’re cramming a large car into a spot pretty much designed for a smaller vehicle? no, not at all.

My assumption is that this doesn’t work for you my friend is because Tesla is being ultra conservative – and they rightly should be!

I suspect that there is a power limitation on the summon feature that the car needs to exceed to roll over the lip on your boards and that’s why it’s not doing it – a simple safeguard.

I would suggest you not wait on Tesla because I don’t think they will want to exceed the power safeguard on the summon feature. Your best solution appears to be what another user suggest, that is to taper the end of your boards at the entrance so the car doesn’t need to utilise that much power to mount them.

Try that and let us know how it goes. Cheers!

Before I bought a $70k-$100k car, I’d spend the money on a shiny new garage to put it in.

This is not Tesla problem. This is a homeowner problem.

+100 I rather buy an i3 and use the rest of the
money to improve my garage.

The garage seems like it is not regulation size anyway. I wonder if this is the same sort of Tesla Owner that supercharges at their local SC station to save 2 bucks on their 100k car purchase. Prioritize much?

The guy should hire an architect to do a remodel and have the poles removed. It looks like a garage with a pitched roof and nothing but empty space between the ceiling and roof. With not much weight to support, the poles seem unnecessary if the garage were properly designed and built. What am I missing?

In my locale the building inspector requires 1200 pounds/ sq ft snow load. My garage is even more stoutly built than even that because half my solar panels are on my garage roof.

At that snow load, would roof trusses with bracing be enough for a garage of this depth or would you still need support posts under the middle of the joists?

Although truss construction is legal in my area wtih 24″ centers, most people wouldn’t want their house built that way since the roof would be mushy when you walk on it.
My garage is ‘overbuilt’ (not by me), and since it has a ‘second floor storage’ I also have several support posts, 2 in the way of my 2 cars. The advantage I have is the garage is extra deep, so I can at least get each driver’s side door free to open, even if I have to let the passenger get out before I enter the garage.

The problem obviously with the ‘modern’ construction is that it avalanches, and is the reason for the funny letters plastered on the windows near the main entrance of commercial buildings, so that fewer fireman are killed due to failed gusset plates of which they otherwise have no warning.

Thanks for the explanation.

You are more than welcome, Sven. It wasn’t much of an explanation, other than it was verbatim what a fireman told me about how they’re reluctant to go on roofs until they know the construction of it, which is indicated near the front door of commercial buildings at least.

Its not my field of expertise, but I try to pass along good info from experts I run across.

You’re a smart guy who is appreciative of additional information. Meanwhile there’s another here who talks to me like I’m a 6 year old and has no maturity as you do.

Thanks for the compliment. 🙂

As the old saying goes: You can’t please everyone.

That goes for Tesla as well as any other company.

First world problem.

Good one.

– Garage built by a stupid guy who made a 3 doors garage with what should have been a 2 door garage.
– The problem is not the car, it’s the owner of the car and the designer of the garage.

So it should drive over the first 2 inch bump, but not the 4 inch bump that serve as wheel stops. Got it.


I can tell that he doesn’t regularly have passengers get in the front while in the garage.

If anyone but a petite passenger gets into the front seat of the far side of the car while it’s in the garage, he’s going to be very unhappy.

The door just barely clears the concrete lip when open. The weight of the passenger entering will flex the suspension and bonk the outer corner of the open door on that coarse concrete edge. If the suspension doesn’t recover the height (like most suspensions do not), when the passenger tries to close the door, there will be a horrible scrape left on the lower edge of that door.

Even if the Tesla air suspension recovers to height after entry, it surely can’t anticipate the load of an adult passenger entering, nor react quickly enough to prevent the initial bonk.

put a small ramp at the end of the board and the car will be able to climb on to the board.


Your garage is bad, and you should feel bad!

You guys are harsh.


Can someone tell me the point of this feature?

1) Most folks with garages have the garage attached to the home. Why would you want to go out into the cold to get into your car?

2) The car isn’t going to be charging itself (not plugged in). If you have to go back in the garage to plug it in, it defeats the purpose

So, it seems as though this will really only be a feature used for people with detached garages, and those who don’t top off when they come home.

It looks to be more of a ‘hey look what my car can do’ feature, but not a very good one.

Ok. So, apparently this is intended for getting into tight spots, where you can’t open your door. I don’t come across that very often, so still seems a bit of a ‘nifty, but not too useful’ vibe about it.

Why not just park in the middle bay?

I assume the middle bay is for the wife.

Knock off some of the excess concrete foundation lip, then You can also remove the boards.
Switch the pole for two poles with an I beam in-between.
Install the wireless charger coming out this spring (Pluglesspower.com time NOT Elon Musk time)
Summon Nirvana 🙂

Why not park in one of the other 2 garage spaces you have!!!
Why don’t you smooth the end of the boards down at the lip to make a angle slop so the car can ride up it.
Remove the boards and use auto summons to have the car exit the garage before getting in and out.

This is really simple.

There’s a lot of hostility today. It’s not like he killed people over saving money fixing defective parts or are causing worldwide health attacks on children and the elderly in order to save money. Common.
I love seeing a Tesla driving itself. Thanks for making the video. I’m sure he realizes how fortunate he is and how minor these issues are. You gotta love 1st world one percenter problems. It makes me laugh.

Maybe downgrade to a Model3 when it comes out so it would fit better.

Good 1.

I don’t get it, why can’t it go over the second, higher lip? You mean it can’t distinguish between an inch high barrier and a barrier right in front of it?

If so, autonomous driving is a long, long way away…..

I too would balk had I to go back
into such tiny and ugly box…
what an imposition!

Rather than try and work around the limitations of the garage he’d be better off fixing the garage itself.

That’s a mighty expensive car for someone who isn’t willing to correct the structure of the garage it resides in, automatic parking Tesla or ’69 Chevelle 396, it doesn’t matter. I wouldn’t want to have to dodge those poles regardless of what I drove.

Before blaming the car he had rather think first what he could improve himself, avoiding to get in this situation at all.

I hope that Tesla doesn’t allow the car to get closer than what it already does. There’s too big a risk of hitting something.

In the unique situation presented here, it appears that the driver must pull the car forward, however for the other issues, I would add more height to his boards so that when passengers get in the car, the door on the passenger side won’t hit the concrete from the weight of the passengers and baggage. It is far too close as it is.

The current sharp lip on the end of the wood is so pathetically easily to remedy that I’m not sure why were even mentioning it. Make a ramp that goes up the inch or three to solve the problem. Their peers to be several feet with which to make this happen.

Pretty tough crowd today. Looking at the cracks in the floor, it seems to be an older construction, so maybe codes (and cars) allowed for a smaller footprint. Notice the dents in the front of the middle bay, obviously somebody pushed a bit too far into the sheetrock. I’ve seen the same thing with some of the 1950-60’s cars with fins and the typical garage of the time. The boards look like a quick and simple solution (although probably temporary and yes, it needs a tapered ramp) to the problem.

Personally, I don’t really understand the whole “summons” thing anyway. The car will be plugged in (remember that’s what Tesla recommends), so what’s the big deal going out and unplugging? Sure, maybe in the future there will be a robotic snake in every garage, but until I see it at every Supercharger, it ain’t happening at home.