Leaving Tesla At The Airport? 11 Important Things (Checklist)

Most Tesla vehicles use lithium-ion batteries and require charging for optimum functioning.

It is advisable to charge up your Tesla before leaving it at the airport and appropriately schedule your charging session.

However, if you want to travel and leave your Tesla at the airport, these are the specific steps you need to follow.

1. Close Your Doors and Trunk Properly

Make sure you close your doors and trunks properly. If the doors and trunks are not properly locked, it will drain the battery of your Tesla. 

2. Ensure You Arrive With Sufficient Battery

Leaving your Tesla idle with a 100% charge is not advisable. Instead, you can leave the battery level charged at 90%.

Meanwhile, you should know all the details of what percentage Teslas should be charged.

If your location is not far from the airport, you charge 95% before leaving home and use part of the energy to drive to the airport.

This will probably leave you with a 90% battery charge.

However, if your location is far from the airport, make sure you charge your Tesla in a charging location near the airport. If you’re considering other options, you should know whether rental cars are cheaper at airports.

3. Turn Off ‘Sentry Mode’ From the Safety and Security Control Menu

Phantom drain is caused by using the Sentry Mode on Tesla vehicles.

Sentry Mode is a security feature that monitors and scans the area around the Tesla vehicle, keeping it awake. The entire computer system and cameras around the Tesla vehicle must be active to detect threats. 

However, Sentry Mode utilizes about 1-2 miles of battery power per hour, which takes a toll on the battery. 

It is advisable to switch the mode off whenever you are parking the Tesla vehicle at the airport if the car is not plugged in. 

4. Switch off Smart Summon Standby

This feature also keeps the system active and hinders it from sleeping.

Since the airport environment will have surveillance cameras to monitor the cars parked in the lot, switching the Smart Summon Standby off is better. 

When the Smart Summon Standby mode is on, it keeps all the central computers powered up, consuming around one mile of range per hour. 

It will consume more energy and drain your battery. 

5. Turn Off Scheduled Departure Preconditioning

This feature preconditions the battery and turns on the climate control for the cabin on your Tesla.

The Scheduled Departure Preconditioning feature is excellent on Tesla, but turning it off when you park at the airport is advisable.

6. Disable Cabin Overheat Protection

This feature ensures that the internal temperature of your Tesla vehicle does not get too warm.

The Disable Cabin Overheat Protection feature switch on the fans and the air-conditioning system for the vehicle’s cooling.

These units, air-conditioning system, and the fans utilize the battery power, and it is better to disable the feature to save battery. 

7. Park Your Tesla in a Covered Parking Lot or Garage

If the airport has an available indoor parking lot, use it.

Sometimes, your Cabin Overheat Protection feature may be off, and the Tesla vehicle may jump in to ensure your battery is warm.

Ensure your vehicle is not exposed to extreme cold or sunlight.

8. Avoid Checking on Your Tesla via the App

While you are away, avoid waking your Tesla vehicle up on your Tesla app. If you open the app on your phone, it will wake the Tesla vehicle and open it.

Your Tesla vehicle will be online and active for about 15 minutes anytime you open the app. Doing this will drain the battery and consume more energy in the long run.

Check your Tesla app only when it is necessary while you are away.

9. Charge Your Battery Reasonably

The best way to store lithium-ion batteries is by charging them at a reasonable charge rate. Ensure you set your charge level in the Tesla app or the vehicle to 50%.

It will make your Tesla vehicle utilize some energy required for cooling or heating the battery. This method will make it receive power directly from the power source rather than the Tesla batteries.

Meanwhile, find out how much supercharging a Tesla costs.

10. Disable Third-Party Apps

There are loads of third-party apps that are available for Tesla vehicles. Examples are OptiWatt, TeslaMate, Teslafi, etc.

Tesla owners can use these apps to check their Tesla vehicles remotely. These apps can access information about your Tesla but activate your vehicle’s features while you are not there.

Disabling these apps while you park your Tesla at the airport is advisable. Some third-party apps can pause their functions to enable the Tesla vehicle to sleep.

Different apps on your device can lead to conflict and keep your Tesla awake.

Some apps like the OptiWatt can overrule the settings and maintain their schedule even when the Scheduled Departure mode is switched off.

In another instance, cabin Overheat and Sentry Modes will go off automatically once the battery is below 20%. Checking your Tesla vehicle with apps will drain the battery life before you come to the airport.

11. Decide if You Are Leaving the Vehicle Plugged In

It is essential to note the charge to take you home or to the next charging destination.

If the vehicle is plugged into a power source, the Tesla will remain at the same charge percentage if there are no power outages. 

If the Tesla is not plugged into a power source while you are away, you will probably have less charge when you return to pick it up.

The safer option is to have your Tesla vehicle plugged in when you are out of town for a vacation. 

‘Airport Mode’ in the Works?

On the Tesla forum, most owners have clamored for creating “Airport Mode,” a feature that owners can adjust with the tap of a button. 

They believed this mode would enable them to park their vehicles at an airport as long as they wanted without the battery draining.

Unfortunately, this feature is not available on Tesla. 

If traveling for longer weeks, you may park your Tesla at home to avoid paying the airport parking lot fees. 

For those who park their vehicles at home, reduce your charge limit to 50% and leave it plugged in to enable the Battery Management System to handle the rest while you are on vacation. 

Final Thoughts

Most Tesla owners will be happy to see their vehicles in good condition after leaving them at the airport.

Returning to the airport to meet a Tesla with a drained battery can be a nightmare. The reason is that a maximum of 1% is drained daily, even when specific modes are switched off on the Tesla vehicle. 

Following the instructions mentioned in this article is better for the overall health of your battery.

Was this article helpful? Like Dislike

Click to share...

Did you find wrong information or was something missing?
We would love to hear your thoughts! (PS: We read ALL feedback)