Tesla Phone Key Help You Setup and Solve Troubleshooting

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One thing that Tesla owners like the most about their electric cars are the convenience factors that come with ownership. Like the Tesla phone key setup.

So, let’s talk about the Tesla phone key setup. We’ll discuss what it is, how to set it up, and some do-it-yourself troubleshooting solutions.

Table of Contents

    What Is the Tesla Phone Key?

    The Tesla phone key is using App as the car key. It allows you to automatically lock, unlock, and communicate with your Tesla via Bluetooth. The phone key is a built-in convenience by Tesla that allows you to forgo the use of a physical key if you wish.

    Tesla’s virtual phone key is also sometimes referred to as the “lock app”.

    With a Tesla phone key, you can lock, unlock, and even remotely start your Tesla electric car from a distance of up to 15 to 30 feet away. The “Walk Away Door Lock”, feature of the Tesla phone key allows you to automatically lock your vehicle’s door as you walk away from it.

    The setup process to activate your Tesla phone key could be performed in less than five minutes. So, before I show you how to set up your Tesla phone key, here is a rundown of everything you need to have before you start.

    How To Set Up Tesla Phone Key?

    Firstly, download the Tesla app on your smart device for Android or iOS. Then double-check and make sure that your Bluetooth is on and engaged with the Tesla app.

    That is basically everything you must do to set up your phone key outside your Tesla Model Y or 3.

    Now, you must get inside the vehicle to continue the setup process. 

    Engage your smart device. Logon onto the home screen of the official Tesla mobile app and press the “Phone Key” icon. 

    The Tesla mobile app will ask you if you want to “Set Up Your Phone as Key?” Press the “Start” icon, when you receive this prompt. Your Bluetooth app will automatically begin searching for your Model Y or 3 for electronic engagement.

    Once your Bluetooth engages with your Model Y or 3, the Tesla mobile app will ask you to hold your key card on the center console. Do this when prompted.

    After you hold your Tesla key card against the center console of your vehicle, your phone key app on your smart device should display a “Success”, prompt. You will also see a “Done” icon near the “Success” prompt. Press “Done” to finalize the process.

    After pressing “Done”, the name of your smart device will then appear under the “Keys” prompt on the touchscreen of your Model Y or 3.

    You’re now ready to remotely engage and access your Tesla Model Y or 3 via your Tesla Phone Key.

    Additionally, once you digitally authenticate your Tesla phone key, you don’t need an internet connection to engage your Tesla vehicle.

    Want to customize the name of your Tesla phone key? Click the pencil-shaped icon on your phone key app to customize your phone key name.

    Can You Have Two Phone Keys For Tesla?

    Depending on the size of your family and the number of people that you authorize to drive your Tesla, you could authorize the creation of as many as 19 Tesla phone keys.

    Once your Tesla vehicle electronically detects the first driver profile downloaded by you when you activate your phone key for the first time, then your phone key and Tesla account profile will be automatically recognized as the primary phone key account.

    To add a secondary phone key through your account, first, open your Tesla mobile app. Click on the “Security and Drivers” icon, then, click on “Add Driver”.

    A majority of Tesla drivers leave their cars set to “auto-lock”, as they walk away from it. Be cautioned that if you leave your smart device with the phone key in your Tesla and walk away, then you’re creating a problem for yourself.

    If you leave a phone key on and leave it in your Tesla, it’s the same as leaving the door open and the car running. Your Tesla will be unlocked, anyone can get in and take your phone key, and drive it away. 

    Always keep your Tesla phone key with you to protect it, especially every time you exit the vehicle.

    Troubleshooting Tips For Tesla Phone Key

    Here are a few troubleshooting tips for solving any issue you encounter using your Tesla phone key via your smart device and app settings.


    Always ensure that your Bluetooth is on and engaged with your Tesla before attempting to use your Tesla phone key.

    Very Low Levels of Power

    Make sure your smart device is always at or near full power when in use. Bluetooth services may automatically switch off when a smart device is at low power.

    Internet Connection

    You don’t need the Internet connection to use your Tesla phone key after you set it up. Still, it is always a good idea to keep your Internet service always connected for optimal smart device use and troubleshooting.

    Updated Smartphone OS

    Set your smart device to always download and install the latest iOS and Android updates and patches.

    Location Services in Phone Setting

    After you set up your Tesla phone key, go to your smart device “settings”. Find “Set Location Services”. Set it to “Always On”, or to “Only When Using App”, to ensure electronic engagement with the Tesla app.

    Restart Your Smartphone

    When in doubt after encountering a problem, try restarting your smart device.

    Not In Airplane Mode

    Your Tesla phone key may not work if your smart device is in airplane mode or if Bluetooth is disabled.

    Tesla Into a Deep Sleep

    Make sure that you have a WiFi connection and that your Bluetooth is on. Your Tesla phone key should have an “Unlock” icon that will wake the vehicle from a deep sleep.

    Our Verdict

    The Tesla phone key is a convenience for drivers who don’t want to use a physical key. With a Tesla phone key, you can remotely lock, unlock, and even start your vehicle.

    You can use your Tesla phone key to authorize others to have their own phone keys. And you can troubleshoot almost any problems you encounter via your phone key, Tesla app, and Bluetooth connection.

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