Tesla Charge Port Not Opening? Do this!

Tesla Charge Port Door Will Not Open

Why is My Tesla Charge Port Not Opening?

1. Lack of communication

Do you have a Tesla model whose charge port door doesn’t open from time to time?

Does your Tesla charge port door make some clicking noises like it has received a command, but it refuses to open?

Has your Tesla refused to open from the charging cable? Have you tried to get service come out because it is getting worse and you think something is wrong with it?

Then you have a problem with the charge port communicating with either of the opening methods.


Try opening the charge port from charging cable.


If that doesn’t work try opening the charge port from the app.


Leave the car for a few hours and re-try, and the charge port door will open successfully which is extremely weird.


Occasionally your charge port will not open when your hit the button on the charger.

Does your charge port open to touch?

When it doesn’t, you can just lightly tap the bottom of the charge port with your finger and it opens right up.


Has your Tesla charge port flatly refused to open, even with the “tap it” approach


Also, power cycle/reset the vehicle (hold down the both clicking wheels) when it happens again.


Just pry the charge port open, gently, with your fingers and it will open right up. Do that and it will work.


If none of these solutions work make a service appointment and wait for the mobile service to come sometime in the next week. They can also diagnose and solve the clicking noises for you.

However, the mobile service cannot do much unless the touch opening issue can be reproduced when they come by.

Service might tell you nothing is wrong including the clicking noise which feels almost like the charge port was communicating but the door was stuck.

They will advise that you keep trying any of the other charge port opening methods and make sure that the car is unlocked when opening the charge port.

2. Software glitch

Tesla Service has revealed that there was a bug with a recent update that affected the charge port door.

There was a software glitch where charge port door tries to open, but it’s stays locked so the charge port door can’t be opened and leads to you hearing clicking noises.


Initiate wo-wheel reset first and see if it helps.


Try prying the door open though it can be uncomfortable forcing a motor to move, even if it gets results. Do that for an emergency only.


Get your software or firmware updated

3. Sensor not working

Your charge port will not open on tap error on your touchscreen. You get one of Tesla Active alerts CP_a051 that reads “charge port may not open when pressed. Use another method to open the charge.”

If you can touch the bottom edge of the charge port door and it will not open then the sensor is not working.

The LED Tesla may also not be working either or displaying strange colors.


Use every other way to open it including app, key fob, charging cable, touchscreen

There is also a small nylon latch that you pull inside the boot – right behind the charge port. That should open it.

Try this emergency release and check to see if the charge port starts working again.


Try the voice command such as “open charge port.” or “open butthole”.


Get mobile service to come by and replace out the charger port. This service should take no more than 10 minutes.

Do you have an issue where your charging port door won’t open on your Tesla model?

The charge port door is unresponsive to app, dash, and charger commands to open. It does not have any clicking sound and opens freely.


If the charge port is unresponsive to multiple opening methods try power cycling the car. Check if that works or pull it open manually.

The part that is really worrying and looks wrong is that the door won’t stay upright as it just flops down.


You may need to make a service call.

4. Mechanical issue

The reason your charge port is refusing to open stems from the fact that there’s a fault in the actuator/controller


You might want to get it replaced. The actuator or controller is a small part and can be quickly swapped out.

5. Damaged charge port or components

This might be a potential technical issue if your charged just flops down. It might be broken


You may need to set up a service appointment


Your charge port may need to be replaced.

6. Charger port or components are frozen

Your charger port or parts of it like the locking pins are frozen


Defrost cycle does not affect the door. Running the defrost cycle for five to ten minutes to thaws out the interior of the charging port where the locking pin and other components are found.

7. Software update errors

Have you or anyone experienced a charge port door that won’t open when pressed on it just after completing a software update.

A few Tesla owners complained that their charge port doors were unable to open after the 2022.4.5 update.

This firmware update inhibited the target sensor module in the charge port door from operating properly.

For other Tesla owners, the charged door opened after the software update but they received a strange error.

This error occurred where if you used the button on the charging wand to open my charge port, plugged in, the port light turned red and then screen message said you couldn’t charge because you used the manual release on the charge port.


For this error to go away, you need to unplug, close the charge port door, plug in and retry opening the charge port door

This power cycle resolves the software update error. You should not have a problem charging the car afterwards as this is just a glitch.


You have take in your vehicle to a Tesla service center for the charge port to be looked at.


Tesla technicians have to replace target sensor, charge port and door.

Note that your charge port might behave strangely as it will immediately close and open after removing the charger after this fix.

8. Your charge port door has a gremlin.

Your charge port door won’t open because you have a gremlin on your hands.

It seems like the latch releases but the opening mechanisms aren’t working right. The problem is not really clear.

The Tesla generates an error message that reads, “charge port door failure.”

A gremlin is a random technical glitch that has no explanation, cannot be identified and can easily rectify itself without your intervention.


Try all the aforementioned opening methods until you land on one that works. These include:

  1. Making sure the car is unlocked
  2. Tapping the button on the touchscreen
  3. Clicking on the app open button
  4. Two- wheel scroll reboot
  5. Pushing the button on the handle of our charging plug
  6. Tapping the port with your fingers
  7. Opened it forcefully with your fingers
  8. Pulling the emergency release. Be careful when doing this as the rubber cap may come off, but the metal wire remains intact.


One of the most unorthodox and successful way to open a stubborn charge port door opens is by prying it open with a popsicle stick or a plastic prying tool. Try it.


Be patient. If you wait long enough a gremlin will fix itself. The charge port door will just start working perfectly again, for no observable reason.

You will be able to feel the mechanism trying to “catch” each time you jimmy it open. Maybe at some point it’ll drop back onto its standard track and just resume operations.


If the problem persists book a service appointment


You can also schedule mobile service in the app, and mobile team will show up and fix. It is a fast repair, that is covered by the warranty.

9. Other car parts are too close

The charge port on your Tesla Model clicks, but does not open. You have pressed the button on the screen in the car many times and have clicked the button in the app.

This almost always results in the port making the click noise that usually indicates the charge port is going to open, but it never results in that. Assuming you have a motorized charge port try the following solutions


Push on the right edge of the door to get it open.


Check whether other parts such as the taillight are too close to the charge port. They may need to be adjusted a local service center.


Pry it open by hand.

10. Mishandling

The magnetic charging port door holds on pretty tight. It will stick especially if you close the port too hard.


Lightly closing the charge port door and letting the magnet do its work.


If it sticks, tap the hinge as you try to make it open. Read it somewhere here or on the TMC forums and it worked for me.

11. Moisture

Charge port doors do not like the rain because it can cause blockage of latching mechanisms.

When it is raining a lot, and you are charging outside in the rain, you will find that the hinges do not work as efficiently as they should leading to the charge port door to get stuck.


Gently rap the back edge of the charge port door with your palmto flip it open.


Take your Tesla to the SC to get the hinge adjusted.


A DIY solution to get your charge port door to open is to wedge your ID between the charge port and the car and apply a little lever pressure while tapping the NFC button on the charge cable to command a release.

It will pop right open.

Note that if you command a release, hear the click, but nothing happens, that you have to go hit the brake to command a lock to attempt the release again.

Brady Klinger-Meyers is an experienced writer and marketer with who currently writes for Teslord as well as other popular sites like MakeUseOf and Techzillo. At Teslords, he focuses on general Tesla advice with his interest being accessories and gadgets. Read our Editorial Guidelines and Fact Checking process.


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