Tesla updates battery software after third Model S burns while parked

The third fire happened in Hong Kong.

Tesla announced it's releasing updated battery software after three of its cars caught fire while parked in less than a month.

"Out of an abundance of caution, we are revising charge and thermal management settings on Model S and Model X vehicles via an over-the-air software update that will begin rolling out today, to help further protect the battery and improve battery longevity," the company said in a statement sent to Jalopnik.

The company added it hasn't found a link between the parameters the update will modify and the fires yet, and it said customers won't notice a difference when they charge their car. The battery pack found in the Model 3 is different than the unit used by Tesla's bigger models, so it's not affected by the update.

In April 2019, footage of a Model S catching fire while parked in a Shanghai parking garage went viral in China and abroad. In early May, a second Model S caught fire while parked in a San Francisco garage. About a week later, a third Model S went up in flames in the parking garage of a shopping mall in Hong Kong, Apple Daily reported. It was parked for 30 minutes before the fire started, and witnesses said they heard three explosions. The owner told investigators he used Tesla's Supercharger to zap his battery pack with a 97-percent charge before moving his car to the garage. The fire started at the front of the car.

Tesla's investigation into the fires continues, the spokesperson told Jalopnik. It hasn't revealed what might have caused them, or whether they're related, but it continues to stress its cars are safe, and far less likely to catch fire than a comparable gasoline-powered model.

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