One great thing about getting a Tesla is that you no longer have to carry around a car key, since your phone functions as a car key. Say goodbye to scrambling to find your car keys in the morning. 

However, what if you need to leave your phone inside your Tesla? For example, if you want to go on a quick jog or swim, and don’t want to take your phone? 

Your phone is your Tesla car key, and the connection occurs via Bluetooth.

If your phone is left inside the Tesla & Bluetooth is on, anyone can still open your Tesla (even if you manually lock your car via a key card). 

Different Options

This is what I’ve found to work:  

1. Turn Off Bluetooth. 

If you turn off Bluetooth on your phone, the phone can no longer function as a key. When you exit the Tesla, use your Tesla Key Card (or Key Fob or Tesla Ring) to lock and unlock the car.

See my other blog post on various Options to Lock and Unlock your Tesla. 

Once you turn Bluetooth off, the Tesla app will notify you that the phone key will not work.

tesla phone bluetooth disabled
Disable Bluetooth to Disable Phone as a Key

2. Use a Signal Blocking Cell phone Bag.

When you place your phone in this bag, it blocks all signals, including Bluetooth. Therefore, this is effectively turning off Bluetooth. Then, when you exit the Tesla, use your Tesla Key Card to lock the car.

 This signal blocking cell phone bag can be purchased on Amazon

3. Turn Off your Phone.

If your phone is off, then Bluetooth is off, and your phone cannot act as a key. Then, when you exit the Tesla, use your Tesla Key Card to lock the car.

Additional Security

Lastly, If you decide to leave your phone in your car, it is helpful to enable “PIN to drive.”

 To do this, go to Controls > Safety & Security > Enable PIN to Drive

Therefore, if you forget to do either of the options above, and someone still gets into your car, they will still need to know your PIN in order to drive the car.

tesla pin
Enable PIN to Drive


The bottom line is that in order to leave your phone in your car and prevent someone from entering, you need to deactivate bluetooth

I created a Youtube video on this topic, so if you’d like to see that, check it out below. 


The opinions and views expressed on this blog are solely personal, Everyday Chris.  Everyday Chris is not affiliated with or endorsed by Tesla. It is neither inferred nor implied that products recommended by Everyday Chris nor recommendations given by Everyday Chris are authorized by or in any way connected to Tesla. This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my links, at no extra cost to you. Please read full Terms & Conditions for more information.

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