If you just bought the Tesla Model Y and noticed the frunk panels rattling, you are not alone. While it is annoying to think that any car – even a Tesla – will have its notable issues, there’s a reason this issue happens (and a way to fix it).
Why do Model Y frunk panels rattle? Model Y frunk panels rattle because the panels are too loose. When they’re too loose, they knock against each other and cause a rattle when driving. This panel rattle is a common problem, but can be easily fixed!
This common issue with the model Y (and sometimes the Model 3 as well) has plenty of solutions. Read the “how to know” section below to identify your issue and the “how to fix” portion to learn how to resolve the problem!
Sourcing The Problem
A rattling noise in your Tesla doesn’t always mean the issue is from the frunk panels rattling, but it’s normal to think so.
It’s a common issue people have, so they naturally assume that’s what the problem is. They may even be diagnosing the sound based on anecdotal information.
Before you try to learn how to fix the frunk panels, you can quickly skim this article to determine which issue you identify most within your vehicle, then repair the matter accordingly.
Remember, there could be more than one thing going on!
Just make sure to first identify where the rattling is coming from so you can confirm the source.
You could try to fix it yourself if you’d like.
However, if you’re out of your element, try to record the sound (via a video or audio recording) and note when and where you hear the sound. Bring this to a technician, as the sound can’t always be heard during a diagnostic test drive.
How to Know if it’s the Frunk
If you listen for the exact location of the sound, it won’t be in the car, but you can still hear it clearly (the sound should be coming from the front of your car since we’re talking about the frunk panels). This rattle will be particularly evident when you’re driving fast, like on a highway, or when you go over speedbumps.
You can tell it’s in the frunk if it’s a faint rattle. If you can’t figure it out, try opening the frunk and listen for the rattling in there.
How to Fix the Issue
You need to put some sort of barrier around the plastic trim in the frunk. There’s not really a “permanent fix” to this where you take it into the SC (or service center), and they replace your frunk.
It’s more of a design flaw, so you may need to do a little installation yourself.
It’s a relatively straightforward process, though, so there’s not a huge chance for error!
- Place a towel between the panels. This could be a temporary fix unless you don’t mind leaving it this way. It’s a good, temporary quick fix, as you probably don’t want a towel just sitting in your frunk, but you likely have a towel on hand!
- Tighten the undercarriage bolts. This is more of a preventative tip, as you can include it in your maintenance routine. Just ask the Service Center to check your undercarriage bolts the next time you get your tires rotated.
- Put gorilla tape where the top and the metal touch (the top edge in the frunk). Gorilla tape is easy to find and will easily mute the sound. Just make sure you cover the entire area, and maybe even overlap the tape. If you only get the “main” part, you may still hear rattling. Try to cover the sides of your frunk too. That way, there’s also tension to prevent rattling in the first place, on top of the sound.
- Sound absorbing tape. This is similar to gorilla tape but could be more effective. It provides a barrier specifically for this issue. It also has a little bit of built-in cushion and would minimize any excessive noise and rub. Sound absorbing tape could also prevent damage from long term rubbing caused by the rattling.
- Wrap a rubber band around the plastic part covering the hinge. This may be the quickest way to eliminate the noise. It knocks the sound right out by creating more tension, so there’s no chance for the rattle to happen.
How to Know if it’s the Tweeter:
This is a slightly less common cause of rattling than the frunk panels. However, it’s difference in location means you will need a different solution.
If the sound seems to come from the dashboard, it could be an issue with the tweeter.
This rattling will likely be amplified if you turn your volume up and use a lot of bass, so you could try turning the radio on and off to isolate this issue.
While this would be the most obvious sign that it’s the tweeter causing the issue, you could do a different test and still rule it out. Simply put your hand on the top of the steering column, and if the noise stops when you do this, then you know the tweeter is most likely the problem.
How to Fix the Issue:
- You can take your Tesla into your local Service Center and let them know you think the tweeter is causing your car to rattle and give your reasons why. They can tighten that up for you! Or, you could try to tighten it yourself if you know how to do it.
How to know if it’s the Seat Positioning:
If the first two weren’t the problem, this is most likely what’s causing the annoying rattle. If you can’t hear the issue from inside the frunk or the rest of your car, it’s likely the seat.
This sound is primarily heard:
- Behind the driver’s head
- Below the driver
- By the door
- To the left of the dash
If you already ruled out the frunk panels and the tweeter, consider if you hear sounds from any of the above areas.
How to Fix the Issue:
- Your seat is likely back too far.
- This could be the driver’s seat, but you should also check the front passenger’s seat.
- Move the seat forward a bit more – towards the center of its available adjustment is ideal. Just make sure you adjust both the driver’s and passenger’s seats, as it could be one and not the other!
How to Know if it’s the VIN Plate:
The VIN plate usually rattles as soon as you start your car, as the vibration will cause the VIN plate to quickly hit the side of your door. This rattle may be harder to locate, but it will become apparent if the noise seems to be behind you or to the left of you when you drive.
How to Fix the Issue:
- This won’t require knowing much about fixing cars.
- Use a screwdriver to tighten the screws holding the VIN plate in place, and there you are!
Wheel Well Liner
How to know if the Wheel Well Liner is Rattling:
There are parts of the wheel well liner that sometimes get loosened and rattle.
The most obvious time to notice the sound is likely when you’re driving fast.
How to Fix the Issue:
- Check for missing screws! It’ll be clear if you see a random hole in your wheel well liner.
- This missing screw is detaching it from the rest of the car. Pick up some screws and washers from your local hardware store, and you can screw these back in yourself!
Next Steps To Take
Trying to fix things yourself is useful if you don’t want to shell out money just to be told what you already know.
But remember, if an issue requires a lot of knowledge on the topic, tools you don’t have, or expert technique, it may be better to allow professionals to take over. You don’t want to try fixing an issue and unintentionally make it worse!