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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We've had a 2017 Bolt since new, with about 16k miles on it now.

Over the last year, the range has crashed pretty terribly. We can only get about 130 miles of range before the car into the low range warning mode. And this is summer, when it's 90F every day. When new, we could squeak out about 300 miles range with the outdoor temperatures that we are seeing.

We have brought the issue up with the local dealer, but they always say that they run a diagnostic and the battery is fine.

Most recently the car went into low range warning with about 20 miles of anticipated range left. The Energy panel showed that we had only used 20.1kW/h of power since the last full charge. I had thought that the 'full charge' capacity of the first gen Bolts was 60kW/h, am I mistaken? And if the battery is supposed to hold that much charge, does anyone have any idea why ours, doesn't? I'm curious if there are third party diagnostic tools to read information from the cells themselves, to maybe self-diagnose if there's a problem with the apck.

We have been in for the recalls of late (both the 'cuts the top 5% of capacity off the battery' recall, as well as the 'restore the battery to original capacity' recall), and have driven a few full battery discharges (well, we drive it until low distance left warning pops up, then plug it in).
 

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We've had a 2017 Bolt since new, with about 16k miles on it now.

Over the last year, the range has crashed pretty terribly. We can only get about 130 miles of range before the car into the low range warning mode. And this is summer, when it's 90F every day. When new, we could squeak out about 300 miles range with the outdoor temperatures that we are seeing.

We have brought the issue up with the local dealer, but they always say that they run a diagnostic and the battery is fine.

Most recently the car went into low range warning with about 20 miles of anticipated range left. The Energy panel showed that we had only used 20.1kW/h of power since the last full charge. I had thought that the 'full charge' capacity of the first gen Bolts was 60kW/h, am I mistaken? And if the battery is supposed to hold that much charge, does anyone have any idea why ours, doesn't? I'm curious if there are third party diagnostic tools to read information from the cells themselves, to maybe self-diagnose if there's a problem with the apck.

We have been in for the recalls of late (both the 'cuts the top 5% of capacity off the battery' recall, as well as the 'restore the battery to original capacity' recall), and have driven a few full battery discharges (well, we drive it until low distance left warning pops up, then plug it in).
If you can document that your battery capacity has actually decreased by more than 40%, you could invoke the battery warranty. If the dealership isn't trustworthy, you could contact GM directly via the concierge line at 833-EV-CHEVY.

The thing is, you'd have to document battery capacity, not range. Easiest with an ODB2 reader and Torque Pro, see instructions at Chevy Bolt OBD2 PIDs – All EV Info . Might especially be helpful if you don't trust the dealership.
 

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If you can document that your battery capacity has actually decreased by more than 40%, you could invoke the battery warranty. If the dealership isn't trustworthy, you could contact GM directly via the concierge line at 833-EV-CHEVY.

The thing is, you'd have to document battery capacity, not range. Easiest with an ODB2 reader and Torque Pro, see instructions at Chevy Bolt OBD2 PIDs – All EV Info . Might especially be helpful if you don't trust the dealership.
Even if you can show the data from your end, GM is still going to require that data to be corroborated by a GM certified technician. I am sorry to say it, but you will likely have to work through a dealer on something like this.
 

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I would agree with calling GM and get their advice. As long as your comparisons of range are apples to apples, there must be something wrong. The dealer should do the OBD read for you. Perhaps GM can guide you on how to talk to the dealer to get the reading for free.

BTW, what is your Bolt?
Year?
Mileage?
How many times have you DCFC? (just curious)
What SOC do you keep your car at? (just curious)
 

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Even if you can show the data from your end, GM is still going to require that data to be corroborated by a GM certified technician. I am sorry to say it, but you will likely have to work through a dealer on something like this.
The problem is that the dealer will try to blow you off to stall. When it comes to paid service, they tend to recommend that early and more often.
 

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The problem is that the dealer will try to blow you off to stall. When it comes to paid service, they tend to recommend that early and more often.
I am not saying you shouldn't reach out to GM directly. In fact, if you get them to open a case, it can force the dealer to take some additional action. GM has a technical assistance team that service technicians can reach out to for assistance, as well. It would't hurt to ask the dealer to reach out to "TAC" with your situation. This has two advantages. 1) It prevents the dealer from blowing you off, and 2) It puts the decision making in terms of both diagnosis process and eventual repairs squarely on GM. In way, this makes it easier for the dealer, because if the results aren't what you expected, the dealer can pass the buck to GM. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
If you can document that your battery capacity has actually decreased by more than 40%, you could invoke the battery warranty. If the dealership isn't trustworthy, you could contact GM directly via the concierge line at 833-EV-CHEVY.

The thing is, you'd have to document battery capacity, not range. Easiest with an ODB2 reader and Torque Pro, see instructions at Chevy Bolt OBD2 PIDs – All EV Info . Might especially be helpful if you don't trust the dealership.
This is super helpful, thanks! Any idea if the 'power used' screen is actually believable (20.1kW/h used since last full charge, with the battery mostly depleted)? I'm not sure how Chevy instrumented the battery's current draw, and we've only let the car into the 'low range left' mode lately as we were hoping that doing this, then fully charging the vehicle, might train the guess-o-meter a bit better. To no avail, apparently...

Anyway I thankfully have a few little bluetooth obd2 dongles so will give these apps+custom pids a shot, see if all the cells are working well.

I'd love to hear from anyone who has actually had such a massive drop in battery life, especially if they got some remedy (replacing individual battery cells, or something to improve capacity). The car is 3 years old now so I don't expect it to have the full range as new....but a roughly 1/2 drop in capacity is pretty alarming!
 

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This is super helpful, thanks! Any idea if the 'power used' screen is actually believable (20.1kW/h used since last full charge, with the battery mostly depleted)? I'm not sure how Chevy instrumented the battery's current draw, and we've only let the car into the 'low range left' mode lately as we were hoping that doing this, then fully charging the vehicle, might train the guess-o-meter a bit better. To no avail, apparently...

Anyway I thankfully have a few little bluetooth obd2 dongles so will give these apps+custom pids a shot, see if all the cells are working well.

I'd love to hear from anyone who has actually had such a massive drop in battery life, especially if they got some remedy (replacing individual battery cells, or something to improve capacity). The car is 3 years old now so I don't expect it to have the full range as new....but a roughly 1/2 drop in capacity is pretty alarming!
Mileage?
How many times have you DCFC? (just curious)
What SOC do you keep your car at? (just curious)
Are you using this for full time ride-sharing?
 

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This is super helpful, thanks! Any idea if the 'power used' screen is actually believable (20.1kW/h used since last full charge, with the battery mostly depleted)? I'm not sure how Chevy instrumented the battery's current draw, and we've only let the car into the 'low range left' mode lately as we were hoping that doing this, then fully charging the vehicle, might train the guess-o-meter a bit better. To no avail, apparently...

Anyway I thankfully have a few little bluetooth obd2 dongles so will give these apps+custom pids a shot, see if all the cells are working well.

I'd love to hear from anyone who has actually had such a massive drop in battery life, especially if they got some remedy (replacing individual battery cells, or something to improve capacity). The car is 3 years old now so I don't expect it to have the full range as new....but a roughly 1/2 drop in capacity is pretty alarming!
The screens are reasonably accurate.

Your car should have, basically, full range at this point. Several folks are well over 100k with <10% degradation. What you're seeing is absolutely NOT normal.

There are (unfortunately) a number of examples on this forum like yours. If you search this forum, you will find them. Here are a few examples though. Ultimately either the individual cells must be replaced or the entire pack.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The screens are reasonably accurate.

Your car should have, basically, full range at this point. Several folks are well over 100k with <10% degradation. What you're seeing is absolutely NOT normal.

There are (unfortunately) a number of examples on this forum like yours. If you search this forum, you will find them. Here are a few examples though. Ultimately either the individual cells must be replaced or the entire pack.
These were fantastic reads, thanks. Especially the note on < 36kwh triggering a pack replacement. I would hazard to guess that ours is now below 30kwh of actual capacity based on power used versus power left calculation. Will have to do the math as we wind down on our fresh charge. Sigh.

I guess we're in for a dealer/GM fight as we work to convince them that some cells are most definitely bad. At least we're armed with actual data, now. Thanks all!
 

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I would agree with calling GM and get their advice. As long as your comparisons of range are apples to apples, there must be something wrong. The dealer should do the OBD read for you. Perhaps GM can guide you on how to talk to the dealer to get the reading for free.

BTW, what is your Bolt?
Year?
Mileage?
How many times have you DCFC? (just curious)
What SOC do you keep your car at? (just curious)
Its a 2017 with 16,000 miles.
 

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These were fantastic reads, thanks. Especially the note on < 36kwh triggering a pack replacement. I would hazard to guess that ours is now below 30kwh of actual capacity based on power used versus power left calculation. Will have to do the math as we wind down on our fresh charge. Sigh.

I guess we're in for a dealer/GM fight as we work to convince them that some cells are most definitely bad. At least we're armed with actual data, now. Thanks all!
I don't want to sound alarmist, but didn't we see one similar case where a Bolt had severely diminished range and then caught fire after charging to 100%?

I know it's a super small sample size and risk assessments yada yada, but If I were you, if it's not too much of an inconvenience I would park the Bolt outside just to be overly safe until the issue is resolved.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
There have been 4 battery management software updates since 2017. Have you had any of them done?
I will have to check how many we've had done. I think 3 so far.

And literally in the mail today we got a notice for Yet Another Recall. Our last one was only a few weeks ago and it was supposed to restore full capacity to the battery I think? After one of the earlier recalls chopped off the top 5% of capacity. This would definitely be more than a 5% reduction though.
 

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I'd tell the dealership they need to show me the printout for the battery diagnostic. They probably checked the 12v battery health and nothing else.

I expect a fault will finally be found based on this description. There have been a couple other stories from owners with a similar issue with drastic range loss, and dealers being initially incompetent to diagnose the issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I will have to check how many we've had done. I think 3 so far.

And literally in the mail today we got a notice for Yet Another Recall. Our last one was only a few weeks ago and it was supposed to restore full capacity to the battery I think? After one of the earlier recalls chopped off the top 5% of capacity. This would definitely be more than a 5% reduction though.
So, we have had 3 of the 4 recalls done. Our last was performed in early April. Looks like the most recent recall started on May 26th, and has 'battery module replacement' as one of the potential outcomes. Fingers crossed that this is good news for us.
 

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This is super helpful, thanks! Any idea if the 'power used' screen is actually believable (20.1kW/h used since last full charge, with the battery mostly depleted)? I'm not sure how Chevy instrumented the battery's current draw, and we've only let the car into the 'low range left' mode lately as we were hoping that doing this, then fully charging the vehicle, might train the guess-o-meter a bit better. To no avail, apparently...

Anyway I thankfully have a few little bluetooth obd2 dongles so will give these apps+custom pids a shot, see if all the cells are working well.

I'd love to hear from anyone who has actually had such a massive drop in battery life, especially if they got some remedy (replacing individual battery cells, or something to improve capacity). The car is 3 years old now so I don't expect it to have the full range as new....but a roughly 1/2 drop in capacity is pretty alarming!
My 2017 started to have a reduced range and GM and my dealer replaced the entire battery in 2018 under warranty. It is especially helpful to contact GM directly, they will work with the dealer.
 
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What's "kW/h"? kWh are the proper units for energy.
 

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My 2017 started to have a reduced range and GM and my dealer replaced the entire battery in 2018 under warranty. It is especially helpful to contact GM directly, they will work with the dealer.
2018 pack, so you may be getting another pack replacement in a few years. Seems the good packs are made in the US plant in 2019. This will be very good news for your Bolt as you will be getting yet another new pack.
 

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What's "kW/h"? kWh are the proper units for energy.
KW/h would see to measure the ramp up and ramp down speed when you start charging or approach specific SOC. :)
 
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