Straightening And Heat: Tesla

A question often asked of the Repairability Technical Support (RTS) team is, "Can heat be used to straighten?" Several OEMs provide steel repairability matrices that provide heating times and temperature limits based on the type of metal being repaired, while other OEMs have restrictions on using heat at all. Let's see what Tesla has to say.

Tesla has straightening and heat guidelines in vehicle-specific Collision Repair Procedures ➤ General Repair Guidelines ➤ Body Structure Materials And Allowed Operations. This area provides a chart with material-specific cold or heat repairability, and max heat temperature and allowed cycles or time.

Per the Tesla document: "Do not heat the adhesive on a bonded panel above 100°C (212°F) unless that panel is being removed. Heating the adhesive above 100°C (212°F) can weaken the adhesive bond and compromise vehicle crash integrity."

For example, Tesla does not allow cold repairs, or heat repairs on ultra-high-strength steel. Also, for cast aluminum repairs, Tesla states: "Repairs on extruded or cast aluminum components can only be performed as specified per components in the Tesla Collision Repair Manual."

Found in vehicle-specific Collision Repair Procedures ➤ General Repair Guidelines ➤ Structural Repair Guidelines, Tesla states:

  • "Tesla does not allow pulling or pushing of body structure components using frame straightening equipment or similar devices of any type."
  • "Cosmetic repairs to panels are allowed. Reshaping of body panels with hand tools..."

As you can see, there are specific use-of-heat guidelines that need to be followed to maintain structural integrity. Using heat during a repair when it is not permitted can compromise the vehicle structure and passenger safety. Always follow OEM procedures and recommendations when it comes to using heat for repairs to ensure a complete, safe, and quality repair.

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

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