How to Lock Tesla When Walking Away (Easy Guide)

One of the coolest features of modern electric vehicles like Teslas is the advent of auto-locks.

The Tesla Model Y, in particular, has a walk-away lock feature, but how does one lock a Tesla while walking away from it?

The Tesla walk-away lock feature requires the user to have their key fob and/or phone key outside of the vehicle with all doors and the trunk properly closed.

Once you walk away from the Tesla, the exterior lights will flash as the side mirrors auto-fold and the car beeps, signaling a successful auto-lock.

To learn more about the specifics of this feature and how to use it step-by-step, keep reading.

We’ll discuss our tips to help you successfully walk-away lock your Tesla every time and answer frequently asked questions at the end. Let’s get into the details!

Locking Tesla While Walking Away

For Tesla Model Y owners, there is a unique auto-locking feature to enjoy that allows owners to walk away from their vehicle as it locks itself.

This feature relies on the use of the key fob or a paired phone key (sometimes both). 

Below is the step-by-step instructions for using the Tesla walk-away locking feature, put in simple terms:

  1. Turn on the feature by navigating through vehicle options Controls –> Locks –> Walk-Away Door Lock (the same control can be used to disable the feature)
  2. Have your key fob in tow or pair your mobile phone key with your Tesla using Bluetooth
  3. When you’re ready to walk away from your Tesla, make sure you have any key device on your person
  4. Exit the vehicle after turning it off
  5. Shut all doors and trunk
  6. Walk away until you hear the noise signal of the lock, see the exterior lights flash, or both

At this point, your Tesla will be auto-locked. As you can see, the process is pretty simple as long as you know how the technology works. 

Tips for Successful Walk-Away Locking 

Although the technology of Tesla models is arguably top-of-the-line, technology can still fail at times.

Therefore, it’s important to be aware of how to successfully use the walk-away lock feature of these vehicles. 

There are some obvious indications that the lock has worked, as well as some signs to be aware of that could signal a problem. 

Listen for the Beep

According to Tesla Model Y owners, one of the easiest ways to discern a successful walk-away lock is to listen for the signature beep. 

These vehicles will beep as you walk away to indicate that the doors have locked, meaning you can rest assured that your car and its contents are secure. 

Check the Side Mirrors

This tip won’t apply to all Tesla owners. However, for those whose models have auto-folding side mirrors, you can rely on the visual of your mirrors folding as you walk away to indicate that the car has locked. 

Check the App 

Tesla vehicles also have an official associated mobile application that allows you to monitor the status of your car.

This app even lets you see if your car has officially locked after you’ve walked away, for safe measure. 

Watch for the Lights

According to Tesla’s Model Y Opening and Closing guide, there is another automatic signal that indicates the doors have locked as you walk away from your vehicle. 

This is a single flash of the vehicle’s exterior lights. This signal is accompanied by the auto-folding of the side mirror, as mentioned above. 

Close All Doors and Trunk

It’s important to note that a Tesla won’t automatically lock as you walk away if you’ve left any of the car doors or the trunk ajar. 

Don’t Linger

You also want to avoid lingering near your car for very long after you exit it.

Staying within range of the vehicle means that either your key fob, your phone key, or both are within range of the vehicle. And this will cause the walk-away lock to fail. 

Furthermore, if you leave your paired key fob or phone directly in the vehicle by accident as you walk away, the vehicle will fail to auto-lock.

Ensure That Bluetooth Works

Last but not least, we recommend ensuring that your mobile device’s Bluetooth settings are turned on and paired with your Tesla.

As you walk away from the vehicle, it relies on this wireless connection in order to trigger the auto-lock if you’re using a phone key.

Does Tesla Walk-Away Lock Work?

According to Tesla owners reporting their experiences on online forums about the vehicles, the walk-away lock feature is incredibly successful. 

Many users report that they feel they can rely on it consistently, and if they have any concerns as to its functionality, they can always check their paired phone app to confirm that their vehicle is locked. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the Tesla Model 3 lock itself?

According to Tesla, the Model 3 vehicle also has the walk-away door lock feature that you can enable or disable. It works in the same way that the Model Y walk-away lock feature works. 

Can you lock yourself out of a Tesla?

Technically, you can’t really lock yourself out of a Tesla because the car is smart enough to not lock when your key fob or phone key is inside of it.

However, technology does sometimes fail to work properly, which means that the car can lock with the key devices inside of it (although this is rare). 

Why doesn’t my Tesla lock when I walk away?

If your Tesla doesn’t lock as you walk away, it’s probably due to a key fob or phone key being left inside the vehicle, a malfunctioning Bluetooth connection, or the fact that you have stayed within range of the vehicle for too long after exiting it. 

Final Thoughts

If you’ve been wondering how to lock Tesla when walking away, hopefully, our guide has explained it all thoroughly. 

The walk-away locking feature requires the use of a key fob and/or phone key connection, as well as closed doors/trunk, keeping your key(s) on your person, and walking far enough away from the car within a 5-minute time period.