Tesla Side Camera Not Working [10 Proven Fixes!]

Many Tesla Model Y owners complained about the Tesla side camera not working. 90% of the time, only one camera gets out of the work.

But as a result, you cannot enjoy the comfort to drive in autopilot mode.

If the software glitch in your Tesla caused that, you can immediately remove the error by updating the Software to V11.4.7.

However, I have devised 10 ways to fix the Tesla repeater cameras.

Why Tesla Side Camera Not Working

Tesla Side Camera Not Working

Before we jump into the solutions, let’s first rule out what’s causing the side camera not to work in Tesla. Here are 6 common reasons I found in my research. 

1. Loose connection

It’s annoying when you cannot see anything from the side cameras. Usually, it’s black, but sometimes, the image flickers on the screen.

That happens when your Tesla’s side camera has a broken wire or a loose connector. You might need an appointment with the Tesla service center to trace that fault. 

Because they will check the whole camera panel and repair the loose connection, in most cases, the Tesla service center replaces the faulty camera.

2. ‘Blind Or Blocked Camera’ Alert

Tesla Model 3 users frequently complained about the error message Blind or Blocked camera’ showing up. In most cases, it happens when you drive on very dark roads. 

The camera is installed in a way that traps moisture inside and causes a short circuit.

The condensation gets in between the camera and the front glass enclosing the camera, which causes the warning to appear on the infotainment screen.

Dust can also block the view, and you will see the warning consequently. 

3. Software Bug

The software glitch is not an exception to be a reason for fault in electric vehicles. Tesla cars work through software, so it’s not uncommon that side cameras in Tesla are not working due to a glitch.

Side cameras usually resume their function after a quick reboot or software update.

4. Broken Hardware

The side camera and the protective glass can get scratched or completely broken after an accident. Many times, the cameras do not work due to a manufacturing fault. 

The hardware can be faulty when you mass produce the electrical equipment.

5. Problem With TeslaCam USB

The USB linked to the cameras to record the footage in Sentry mode is no longer working. Because the storage space is full or there is a fault in USB.

6. Manufacturing Malfunction

There is a huge probability that your Tesla’s camera was faulty from the beginning. You can do nothing until you contact the Tesla Service Center team and replace the defective camera.

How To Fix Tesla Side Camera That isn’t Working

You can apply these quick fixes to restore the side camera’s function.

1. Format Dashcam USB

You can format the dashcam USB to restore the side camera view on the Tesla screen.

  • To do this, you have to open the ‘Controls’ and navigate the ‘Safety and Security’ in the menu.
  • Scroll down to make sure that ‘Sentry Mode’ is on.
  • Below the Sentry mode, you will see the option to ‘Format USB.’
  • Tap on this to Format the data stored in the USB because the insufficient storage space in the Dashcam USB prevents the Tesla side cameras from working.
  • Now check if the side cameras are working.

2. Hard Reset

The full reset of Tesla is the quickest way to resolve the side cameras issue. Here is how you can do this.

  • Make sure that Tesla is in the Park.
  • Press both wheel buttons on the steering wheel and put the feet on the brakes.
  • The screen will go blank and then turn back on.
  • Get out of the Car and wait for 30 minutes before restarting it.
  • Now, get in the Car and restart it.
  • The hard reset you performed will reset the electricals and resolve the rear-side camera problem.

3. Open And Shut The Tailgate

Sometimes, the solution can be as simple as opening and closing the tailgate. So, if your Tesla’s side camera is not working, you must turn on the touchscreen.

All you have to do is to open the tailgate and shut it. The camera view of the side camera will be restored.

4. Power Off 

A manual power off from the infotainment screen restores the cameras. 

  • To do this, you have to go to the ‘Controls.’
  • Then tap ‘Safety’ and navigate to the ‘Power Off’ option.
  • Once you click on this option, it will power off the Tesla screen and HVAC system.
  • Afterward, turn it back on and check if the side camera is working.

5. Clean The Camera

If you suspect your camera is affected by dust, condensation, or moisture, clean it thoroughly by following these steps. 

  • Use a flathead plastic tool to detach the side cameras. You can also remove the Car’s side metal pieces to reach the camera from the lower side.
  • Remove both connectors and disconnect the camera.
  • Clean it thoroughly using a cotton towel.
  • Put it back after reattaching both connectors.
  • Repeat the process with the second side camera.

6. Reset Side Camera

Although Tesla recommends that if you need to perform a recalibration of side cameras, you must do so in an expert’s presence.

But I see no harm in tweaking the camera system myself.

  • You can also recalibrate your Tesla’s side camera by going into the ‘Controls’.
  • Then Navigate to the ‘Safety’ and then scroll down in the Safety menu until you see ‘Camera Calibration.
  • Tap on camera calibration and confirm the selection by tapping on ‘Clear Calibration.’
  • In the next 5 seconds, the system will complete the calibration.
  • You have recalibrated the side cameras by following the procedure.

7. Update Software

  • In the ‘Controls,’ navigate to the ‘Software’ tab.
  • Install the latest software if you see an available ‘Update,’
  • Select the ‘Advanced’ mode before initiating the software update process.
  • After the update, restart the Tesla. The latest software will remove any bug in the system interrupting the side camera function.

8. Recharge your Tesla

You have to supercharge your Tesla to restore the side camera function.

Even if your Tesla does not need that, once its charging is above 90%, the side camera will start working, and you can see the video from the side camera on screen.

9. Faulty camera

In more than half of the cases, the camera replacement was the ultimate and permanent fix to side cameras not working in Tesla.

  • You can ask the Tesla service center for an appointment to replace the camera or do it yourself.
  • Remove the Tesla repeater camera using a flat plastic tool.
  • Once it is out, check thoroughly for damage to the wiring.
  • Remove the connectors and connect them with the new side camera. (you can order the side camera from an ecommerce store like eBay or Amazon.)
  • Before securing the camera to its place, check on the infotainment screen to see if the side camera has started working.
  • Fix the camera in place.

10. Repair In Service Mode

If you have tried turning off the ‘Sentry mode,’ ‘Unplugging the Tesla Flash drive,’ and even performing a ‘Hard Reset,’ it is probably time to repair the Side camera in Service mode.

  • Enter the ‘Controls’ and Navigate to the ‘Software’.
  • Then touch on the ‘Long Range’ on your Tesla just below the Car’s model name for 10 seconds.
  • Then a Popup menu will ask for the ‘Access code’.
  • Write ‘service’ as a code and press ”OK.
  • It will notify you that you are now in the ‘Service mode.’ confirm the selection by hitting on ‘Enable.’
  • Tap on the ‘Driver Assist’ and then ‘Camera.’
  • Here, you will see a ‘Reset DAS‘ option.
  • Tap on ‘Reset DAS,’ and it will instruct you to hold the ‘Brake and Right signal’ for ten seconds to Unlock the gateway.
  • Then tap on ‘Run Odin Routine.’
  • The ECA will turn off and turn back on. That will restore the Tesla autopilot mode and fix the side cameras.

How Do You Turn On The Side Camera?

Tesla introduced the side camera or blind spot cameras after the V11 update. 

  • To enable it, you have to go to ‘Controls’ and tap on ‘Autopilot’.
  • In that menu, scroll down to allow the ‘Automatic Blind Spot Camera.’
  • Slide the bar to the right side to allow the blind spot camera in your Tesla.

How Do Tesla Side Cameras Work?

Tesla side cameras locate any vehicle coming from the blind spots. Thus, it’s very important hardware to drive the Tesla in autopilot mode.

Do Tesla Side Cameras Always Record When Park?

No, the Tesla side cameras are not always recording. But they are scanning the environment constantly and only record under specific conditions.

What Is The Range Of Tesla Side Camera?

Tesla’s side cameras have a 600 feet detection range. So it detects the vehicles from a better distance and assists in driving in a much better way.

Sum Up

I described each method to fix the Tesla side camera most simply and understandably. 

You can reboot the Tesla, clean the Cameras and power it, open and shut the tailgate, and recalibrate the side cameras to fix them.

But feel free to contact Tesla customer support anytime if you can’t handle the issue. 

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