Here's How Much It Actually Costs To Maintain A Tesla Model 3

If you're buying a Tesla, the Model 3 is the cheapest model you could get your hands on. Since January 1, 2023, the Tesla Model 3 qualified for the new federal tax credit for EVs. This means that instead of paying $46,990 for the Model 3, you could pay $40,390 after the tax cut. Even the Tesla Model 3 Performance trim has a tax discount that reduces its price to $56,390 — down from $62,999. What's even more interesting is that the Model 3 is cheaper in China in a move to compete against BYD — according to Reuters.

For an electric vehicle with a battery that is expected to last between 21 to 35 years depending on how many miles you drive each year, its purchase price seems reasonable. However, how much does it actually cost to maintain a Tesla Model 3? That's if we consider fuel costs, service fees, insurance, and repair costs. Let's find out!

It doesn't cost much to charge a Tesla Model 3

According to EnergySage, the average fuel cost of a Tesla Model is "between 3.60 and 4.62 cents per mile." To put it into perspective, if you're charging a Tesla Model 3 with a 62-kWh lithium-ion battery to full capacity, it could cost you almost $10 on average to cover 267 miles — that's if the cost is 3.60 cents per mile.

However, how much you spend on fuel depends on where you're charging it. For instance, if you're using a Walmart supercharger, you could spend between $7 to $23 to recharge your Tesla Model 3, depending on the state you live in. On the other hand, if you're using a home charger, it's cheaper to fuel your Tesla Model 3 — especially if you're taking advantage of EV discount tariffs. According to Tesla's charging calculator, it could cost you an average of $9.40 to fully charge a Tesla Model 3 using a home charger to cover a distance of 272 miles. Well, whichever charging station you use, you will likely spend less to fuel a Tesla Model 3 than you would a gasoline vehicle.

Tesla Model 3 is inexpensive to maintain

According to Car Edge, the average cost of maintaining a Tesla Model 3 over a decade is $3,587 — this is cheaper compared to luxury sedans that have an average maintenance cost of $8,374. Andy Slye, an EV and tech YouTuber, also claims to have spent $1,577 to maintain a Tesla Model 3 after driving 73,000 miles. Of course, how much you could spend to maintain a Tesla Model 3 is different on a case-by-case basis, but the EV should be cheaper to maintain than most gasoline vehicles.

In fact, Tesla recommends that the Model 3 should "be serviced on an as-needed basis." Nevertheless, you still need to do minor maintenance such as changing the cabin air filter after two years and topping up the brake fluid when necessary. Besides that, you should change the A/C desiccant bag after six years and re-adjust the tires after intervals of 6,250 miles. In addition, you're required to use new tires on your Tesla Model 3 after every six years, and it should cost you about $900.

Tesla Model 3 is expensive to repair after an accident

Even though the Tesla Model 3 is cheaper than most gasoline cars to service, it could be 27% more expensive to repair than the average car. This is because Tesla spare parts can be hard to find from third parties. As a result, most people have no option but to buy Model 3 spare parts directly from Tesla, or authorized service centers.

The battery pack of a Tesla Model 3 is also expensive to replace — it could cost you almost $15,800. However, the battery of a Tesla Model 3 can last over 300k miles before it's due for a replacement. More succinctly, it's possible to drive your Tesla Model 3 for two or three decades before you need to replace the battery pack.

Not to mention, if the battery fails or loses over 30% of its capacity before 100k miles or eight years, you should get a free replacement under the warranty. What's more, Tesla offers an insurance package to cover any expensive repairs if you're involved in an accident.