Bumper Cover Repair With ADAS: Tesla

Bumper Cover Repair With ADAS: Tesla

A simple bumper repair on a modern vehicle may not be as simple as it seems. New technologies like blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, and other advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) utilize sensors behind the bumper covers. The ability for these sensors to be able to see clearly, normally requires special caution when considering a bumper repair. Many OEMs have different levels of warnings when it comes to repairing bumper covers with ADAS. So, what does Tesla say on the subject?

Tesla has two Body Repair Tech Notes that address bumper cover repairs:

  • Repair Plastic Components covers the repair of a variety of plastic types and components including front and rear bumper covers.
    • Repairs are allowed on the front cover, as long as, they are not performed in the radar area.
    • There are no restrictions for rear bumper cover repairs as there are currently no ADAS components located behind the rear bumper cover on any Tesla model.
  • Repair Guidelines for Front Bumper Fascias provides detailed information on acceptable front bumper cover repair and refinishing for all Tesla models. It specifies the maximum allowable paint thickness in the area of the radar as 12 mils, and states that is approximately the thickness of one factory coat and one recoat. However, they stress the use of a paint thickness gauge to accurately measure thickness.
    • Tesla does not allow any repairs in the radar area. Tesla states not to:
      • use plastic filler.
      • use glue.
      • use plastic welding.
      • leave a feathered paint edge in radar area.
    • Specific measurements are given for each model to identify the area of the bumper cover where repairs are not to be performed. The document goes on to caution that the radar sensor is calibrated to the factory thickness of the plastic bumper. Removal of too much material in the radar area may result in incorrect radar function.

For additional Tesla information, check out the Tesla OEM Information page.

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