How to Check If Tesla has Garage Door Opener and How to Program It

By Nuno Cristovao

Teslas have the ability to automatically open your garage door as you’re approaching your home. They can also automatically close it as you’re leaving.

They do this by combining the GPS signal with the HomeLink module that opens your garage door.

Tesla Garage Door Opener with HomeLink

How to Tell If Your Tesla Has HomeLink

All Teslas are capable of opening garage doors using HomeLink, however not every Tesla comes equipped with the HomeLink module.

If you have a Model S or Model X, then your car already has the capability to open your garage door.

If you have another model, then whether it’s included in your car will vary. Model 3s included HomeLink only up until Spring of 2019. It then became an option that would be installed after delivery through Tesla service. All Model Ys do not have it installed unless it was installed after delivery.

However, the easiest way to tell if your car has a garage door opener is to check on the car’s display. You can go to Controls > Software then tap on Additional Vehicle Information.

This will bring up a screen that will display several important details about your vehicle and the hardware it includes.

The screen will display which full self-driving computer hardware is installed, your infotainment processor and more. It will also display whether you have the HomeLink garage door opener hardware installed.

Next to ‘Garage door opener’, you will either see ‘Not installed,’ or ‘HomeLink 5 (Opt 2).’ The number may vary, but it will mean that you have the HomeLink module installed and your car is capable of opening garage doors.

Program HomeLink Garage Door Opener

If you have a garage door opener in your Tesla, then you can program the car to automatically open the garage door when you pull up to the house.

You can also operate the doors individually through the car’s interface and even operate the main garage door through the Tesla app.

To program your car you’ll need the remote that came with your garage door opener, or easy access to the garage door motor in your garage.

If you’re programming the car using the button on the garage door opener motor, make sure you have plenty of space and a good step ladder because you’ll need to complete the operation in a certain amount of time. If someone is available to help, that will make the process much easier.

To get started you’ll tap on the HomeLink icon along the top of your Tesla’s screen that looks like a house with an arrow then tap HomeLink Settings.

This brings up the HomeLink screen which allows you to add various garage doors or compatible accessories such as lights or gates.

Start by tapping on Add New HomeLink then enter a name for this garage door, such as ‘Left Garage’ and then tap Create HomeLink.

Standard Mode or D-Mode

You’ll next be presented to set the HomeLink transmit mode. The mode you need to pick will depend on your location and method you’re using to program your car.

Standard Mode - This is the most common mode. If you’re unsure of which to use, you should start with this one, as it’s the simplest to set up. This option requires the use of your garage door remote.

D-Mode - D-mode is usually used in North America. You’ll want to use D-mode if you’re using the ‘Learn’ or ‘Smart’ button on your garage door opener motor.

UR-Mode - UR-mode is similar to D-mode but it’s a standard that’s usually found in Europe, the Middle East and Asia. It’ll also require you to use the ‘Learn’ button on your garage door opener motor.

Set your preferred mode and tap Set Mode.

Next, you’ll want to make sure your car is parked in front of your garage. The car uses this location to determine when to open your garage door when arriving home.

Later you’ll then be able to set how many feet before reaching this location should the car send the signal to open your garage.

Programming With Standard Mode

Get ready to program your car and tap Start. You’ll now want to go outside of your car with your garage door remote and point it at the front bumper closer to the passenger side.

Now press and hold the button that opens your garage door on the remote and keep it pressed. It can take up to 30 seconds to program. Your car’s lights will flash when it’s complete. Keep in mind that your garage door will open or close when you do this, so make sure there is nothing in the way.

Once you see your headlights flash, that means the car was successfully able to record the signal from your remote.

When you go back in your vehicle you should see that the recording was completed and you’re prompted to tap next to continue.

If you’re using Standard Mode, the next step will vary depending on whether your remote is QuickTrain compatible or not.

If your remote is QuickTrain compatible or doesn’t use a rolling code then you can tap Continue, if it’s not either of those, then you’ll be required to press the ‘Learn’ button on your garage door opener motor.

If you’re not sure, you can try pressing continue and see if HomeLink works. If it doesn’t work then you know your remote is not QuickTrain compatible.

Programming With D-Mode or UR-Mode

If you’re using D-Mode or UR-Mode to program your car you will need easy access to the garage door opener motor.

The car will ask you to press the Learn or Smart button on the garage door motor. It’ll be a small button that may be behind a cover or door. It’s usually a bright color such as orange, red, yellow or purple, but it can be any color.

After pressing the button you will need to go back to the car in a short period of time and tap continue. This is to prevent unauthorized use of your garage door.

Testing the Button

After programming your garage door the car will ask you to test it.

The car will have you test the garage door button in the car to see if it works and you’ll be given a chance to go back and choose a different option if it didn’t work the first time.

Once you have your garage doors opening from the car and tap save, you can set various options for the garage door.

Auto Fold Mirrors

This option will cause your car to fold its mirrors right before arriving at your garage. Keep in mind this may make backing out of your garage a little more difficult. Only use this option if you need to.

Auto Open When Arriving

Teslas will combine your GPS signal with your HomeLink transmitter and auto open your garage doors as you’re approaching your house.

This is a really convenient feature and I’d recommend having it on as long as your garage door has the safety sensors at the bottom that will prevent it from closing if anything is in the way.

You can also choose the number of feet away from your garage when the car should send the signal to open it.

It’s nice to have your garage door fully open before you get to it so that you don’t need to stop and wait. However, the number of feet that is right for you will depend on your garage door opener and how far away it could receive a signal.

I’d also recommend having your garage door in view so that for those rare times when you come home and the garage door is already open. This will cause your car to send another ‘open’ signal, causing your garage door to start closing.

It's important to understand that the car has no way to know whether your garage door is open or closed, and unfortunately HomeLink simply sends an "open/close" signal, which causes the garage door to open if it’s closed or close if it’s opened. Some caution is necessary, but the feature works well, especially when you’re arriving home.

Tesla recommends only using the auto-open or auto-close features when your garage door is installed with safety sensors along the bottom.

Keep in mind that the car determines the location of your garage door based on where your car was when you programmed the garage door. The location can be reset at any time.

Auto Close When Leaving

This is the opposite of ‘Auto Open when Arriving’. Your car will automatically send a signal to close your garage door when you’re leaving home.

We do need to be cautious with these features as they’re not discrete open and close signals and they just tell the garage door to switch position.

Reset Location

If you weren’t in front of your garage door when you programmed it, then your car has the wrong location for your garage door. Choosing ‘reset location’ when in front of your garage door will cause the car to change the location of your garage to its current position.

You’ll need to do this for each garage door.

Chime for Auto-Open and Auto-Close

On the HomeLink settings screen you can also set whether you’d like the car to chime before auto opening or auto closing the garage door.

This will have the car make a short ding sound before auto opening or auto closing your garage doors. It’s a little reminder that the garage door is open to move. It also gives you a chance to cancel the auto opening or auto closing procedure before it starts. You’ll see the HomeLink menu come up with a cancel button when this happens.

Limited to 3 Garages or Devices

The HomeLink module that Tesla uses is limited to three HomeLink devices. Unfortunately, this is a limitation of the module itself and not something that Tesla can change.

Add or Install Garage Door Opener in Your Tesla

If you have a Tesla Model 3 or Model Y that does not have the garage door opener, then you can purchase it separately directly from Tesla.

Unfortunately, it can’t be purchased when you buy the car and it needs to be bought and installed by Tesla service after delivery.

The cost for the parts and installation are $325.

If Tesla offers mobile service in your area then it's a convenient and painless process.

Set Which Garage Door Opens In App

In the Tesla app there is a HomeLink icon that will open your garage door. Unfortunately, this button can only be assigned to one garage door.

There is no way to have your Tesla open the other garage doors programmed in the vehicle, however you can pick which garage door to open when you press the HomeLink icon in the Tesla app.

The following procedure requires you to have Enhanced Autopilot (EAP) or FSD. If you go in your car and go to Controls > Autopilot then tap on Summon you’ll be presented with Summon details.

To choose your garage door, tap HomeLink then pick your garage door. You can then turn HomeLink off again. Keep in mind that if you use Summon with HomeLink enabled then you are telling the car which garage door to open before backing out of the garage.

If you do not have EAP or FSD, then you may have to change the order of your garage doors in order to change the one that opens when pressing the HomeLink icon.

How Tesla's FSD Beta Has Expanded Over Time

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla reveals how many miles have been driven on FSD Beta as of January 2023
Tesla reveals how many miles have been driven on FSD Beta as of January 2023
Tesla

Tesla's Full Self Driving (FSD) technology took a giant leap forward in distributing FSD Beta to 400,000 customers in North America. It is a significant milestone for the development of autonomous driving and highlights Tesla's commitment to bringing this cutting-edge technology to the masses. A new version, v11.3 could roll out any day.

Number of Testers Over Time

Tesla made FSD Beta public a little more than two years ago, around October 2020. It was initially only made available to less than a handful of testers, but that pool grew to about 1,000 users later that year.

Since then Tesla has gradually increased the number of testers. The ramp from the initial 1,000 testers took some time, but by October 2021 Tesla had opened it up further through its Safety Score program. By January 2022, it was available to about 60,000 owners.

In March of 2022, Tesla expanded FSD Beta to Canada, gradually adding additional testers, and eventually increasing the number of testers across the U.S. and Canada to 160,000 in September.

Tesla announced this December that the number of testers had grown to 285,000 and recently said this January that it's now accessible to 400,000 Tesla owners.

FSD Beta Expansion and Milestones

Date Milestone
October, 2020 Opened to select testers
Late 2020 ~ 1,000 added
October 2021 Start of expansion through Safety Score
January 2022 Available to 60,000 testers
March 2022 Expansion to Canada
July 2022 Available to 160,000 testers
December 2022 Available to 285,000 testers
January 2023 Access given to 400,000 owners

Faster Feedback

The deployment of FSD Beta to such a large number of customers will provide an unprecedented level of testing and feedback, allowing Tesla to refine the technology and bring it to an even higher level of reliability and safety. Furthermore, with over 90 million miles driven on FSD outside of highways, the published data shows a clear improvement in safety statistics, demonstrating the potential for autonomous driving to revolutionize the way we travel.

This increased testing level will help improve the technology even further, as the system can learn from a broader range of driving scenarios and road conditions.

FSD Will Make the Roads Safer

The safety benefits of Full Self Driving technology will be a major selling point for Tesla and one of the primary reasons for its rapid growth. Using cameras and other advanced technologies, FSD can monitor the road and make real-time adjustments to ensure the vehicle operates safely and efficiently. As a result, this technology reduces the likelihood of accidents and provides passengers with a safer, more comfortable driving experience.

Overall, making FSD Beta available to 400,000 customers represents a major step forward for Tesla and the entire autonomous driving industry. It's now available to all customers who have purchased or subscribed to FSD in the U.S. and Canada. The next big expansion is expected to be in Europe sometime this year.

With its focus on safety and reliability, Tesla is leading the way toward a future where driving is fully autonomous, and accidents are a thing of the past. As technology continues to evolve, we can expect to see even more impressive advances in the coming years, bringing us closer to a world where autonomous vehicles are a common sight on our roads.

Tesla Accessory, Ctrl-Bar Adds Physical Buttons to the Model Y and Model 3

By Kevin Armstrong
The Ctrl-Bar adds physical buttons to the Model 3/Y
The Ctrl-Bar adds physical buttons to the Model 3/Y
Ctrl-Bar

Tesla's minimalistic interior design is both loved and hated. Much loathing is due to the lack of physical buttons drivers are so used to having at their fingertips to control heat, music and everything else in the cabin. The sleek look is attractive, but for some it can fall short in easy accessibility while driving.

That's where a new product comes into play: Ctrl-Bar. Created by Øyvind Husby of Oslo, Norway, Ctrl-Bar has nearly 300 backers on the crowdfunding website Indiegogo and has beat its target funding goal by more than 280 percent. The objective is to provide a tactile, programmable solution to Tesla's minimalistic interior design.

How It Works

Ctrl-Bar is a device that attaches securely to the bottom of the Model 3 and Model Y screen and offers a quick-access, tactile response that physical buttons can only achieve. The premium black glass finish blends seamlessly with the screen bezel, providing a smooth look. It connects to a smartphone using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and gets power from a hidden USB cable connected to the rear center console USB port. The app runs in the background, capturing only the data needed to run the services and prioritizing privacy. In addition, the Ctrl-Bar screen shows real-time changes, so there is no latency when changing temperatures or other functions. After less than a second, the device will send the command to your vehicle.

Ctrl-Bar Video

The Scrolls, Buttons and Extras

The Ctrl-Bar has two scroll wheels with tactile indents to control the cabin temperature, one for the driver and the passenger. In addition, four push buttons are in the middle of the wheels to provide easy access to programmable shortcuts, such as seat heaters, defrost mode, dog mode, and more. All changes made on the Ctrl-Bar are reflected on the center screen, offering a unified experience.

In addition to controlling essential functions, Ctrl-Bar also provides ambient LED lighting. The device has a series of powerful LEDs that illuminate the center console and front footwells. Users can scroll through assorted color and brightness options to find the perfect lighting for their drive. For an additional subscription, Ctrl-Bar offers speed trap warnings. The device checks for nearby fixed speed traps and visually alerts the driver when they are approaching. If the driver exceeds the speed limit, Ctrl-Bar will give an audible warning reminding them to slow down.

The Ctrl-Bar adds physical buttons to the Model 3/Y
The Ctrl-Bar adds physical buttons to the Model 3/Y
Ctrl-Bar

Creative Company with a Track Record

Greenmission, the company behind Ctrl-Bar, has successfully launched a premium wireless charger for the Tesla Model S/X. With trusted manufacturers and software developers on board, the main obstacles to getting Ctrl-Bar into the hands of Tesla owners are developing the phone app, establishing a reliable connection, avoiding supplier issues and delays, and managing costs. Despite these challenges, Greenmission is confident they can bring Ctrl-Bar to market and provide a much-needed solution to the lack of physical buttons in Tesla vehicles.

Ctrl-Bar is an interesting device that adds some physical buttons for owners who want or need them. It matches well with the interior of the vehicle and still provides a sleek look. However, it will require your phone to have a cellular connection to successfully send commands to the vehicle, since it relies on Tesla's APIs.

Tesla drivers are always looking for ways to improve their experience, and new features will be made available through Over-The-Air updates. Furthermore, users' feedback and suggestions will be considered and worked on in future updates.

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Although we share official Tesla release notes, we are not affiliated with Tesla Motors. We are Tesla fans and supporters.

Tesla News

Upcoming Release

View the release notes for the upcoming version 2023.2.10.

Confirmed by Elon

Take a look at features that Elon Musk has said will be coming soon.

Subscribe

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter.