Why do Teslas make noise when parked? 

One of the most striking things about electric vehicles is how… quiet they are. Compared to a fossil fuel-powered engine’s roar, a Tesla barely purrs. However, in all of that relative silence, new drivers often notice that there are some noises that aren’t familiar. 

Particularly, many hear their Tesla make a noise when parked and wonder if it’s something to worry about. The good news is that it usually isn’t, but let’s explore what that sound is—as well as what kinds of noises might actually be cause for alarm.

Why Does My Tesla Make a Humming Sound When Parked?

You’ve just arrived home or to the office parking garage and put your Tesla in Park. The air conditioning is off, but you can still hear a humming sound. What exactly is going on?

Simply put, what you can hear is the coolant pump responsible for protecting the health of your high-tech battery unit. Crucially, whenever you are driving your car, even though power from the battery is being used, some of it is also being replenished by generators running from the car’s wheels. All of this power flow generates heat, and your Tesla is equipped with a clever system capable of regulating the temperatures of its inner components.

These sounds might seem out of place in an EV, but you can think of them as akin to the fans in certain regular car models that stay on even after the ignition is switched off. It is simply the car performing its own maintenance to prevent degradation and maximize the longevity of the vehicle and its battery. If you love the long range and charge performance of your Tesla, then try to look at that temporary hum when the vehicle is parked as an advantage.

When Should I Worry About My Tesla Making a Noise When Parked?

Having clarified that a period of hearing a noise after parking your vehicle is perfectly normal, there are some exceptions. In particular, it’s worth noting that some 2021 Model 3 Teslas made their way out into the world with a defective water pump, and the noise while parked on these cars is louder than it ought to be.

If you still feel concerned about the noise your Tesla makes when parked, then try to assess that sound in the context of your car’s overall performance. Also, pay attention to whether the sound changes over time, as this could be a sign that something is amiss. You can always consult the online community or visit a Tesla Service Center for a second opinion.

With those words of caution, do remember that many of us have been conditioned by driving cars that go silent when parked over the course of a lifetime. In the case of a Tesla, the car will do what it needs to for self-care when you park it and switch off when it’s ready. Sounds pretty smart if you ask me.