Replacing the eMMC in my Tesla Model S

Tesla’s vehicles are awesome. I own a S85 from 2013 and a S100D from 2018. I’ve driven 260.000km and 70.000km with these two vehicles and I love it.

There is however a design flaw in the early Tesla models which can become a very expensive reparation if not performed in time.

Version of of the MCU (Media Control Unit) which was installed up until early 2018 in Tesla S/X runs and is a ticking time bomb.

The problem is the Flash Memory (eMMC) which holds the Operating System of the computer. This wears out over time due to writing data to it.

Writing happens when you use the car. It caches Spotify, Google Maps and many more things. Even when the car is parked the MCU stays running and writes to the eMMC chip.

Eventually this chip will wear out. Before it does it becomes very slow and this results in the MCU becoming super sluggish, unresponsive, the screen reboots at random moments, bluetooth issues, etc, etc.

Inside of the Tesla MCU1
The eMMC chip

A lot has been written about this, so I won’t write to much. Short: Tesla will charge you around 2000 EUR/USD for a new MCU.

I choose to replace this eMMC chip myself and this was a lot cheaper! Total cost was <500 EUR.

Around the world there are a couple of companies doing these replacements. I replaced my eMMC chip together with Loek from Laadkabelwinke.nl (Netherlands): https://www.laadkabelwinkel.nl/tesla-mcu1-emmc-vervangen-reparatie

On Tesla Motors Club there are various topics about these replacements, one for example: https://teslamotorsclub.com/tmc/threads/preventive-emmc-replacement-on-mcu1.152489/

I highly recommend everybody with a Model S/X to replace this eMMC chip before it fails.

The chip will wear out and this causes all kinds of problems. I can’t stress this enough. Replace the chip before it’s too late!

In Europe I would recommend to go to Laadkabelwinkel.nl and have them replace the chip.

Enjoy your Tesla!

Published by

Wido den Hollander

I am the CTO at PCextreme B.V. and i will keep this blog just to post some interesting information about my daily work on Linux (and other) systems.