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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone, we just recently purchased a used Bolt EV from a local Chevy dealer (moving up from a '15 Nissan LEAF)

While it's awesome to see the extended range we get from the Bolt vs the LEAF, we are wondering if we're suffering from excessive battery degradation right off the bat. We'll likely take the car to the dealer to get it inspected, but I wanted to ask here first what everyone's opinions were.

Our car has 13300 miles, 2017 LT model. We removed the Hill Top Reserve to do one full charge to check, and with the Layout on Enhanced, we get the following at full charge:

- w/ Air Conditioning on: 197mi (min 161, max 232)
- w/ Air Conditioning off: 208mi (min 161, max 245)

The max hits the claimed 238mi, but overall I would've expected a new Bolt to have the standard range at 238mi (and not the max, with A/C off).

Is this within range of what we're seeing? Or is this out of the ordinary?

I appreciate in advance everyone's comments.

Kind Regards,
Erick
 

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I had similar concerns about my battery, but range estimates on the dash are a poor way to evaluate battery health, as they are highly affected by recent driving efficiency and temperature.

A better way is to charge to full, drive it to draw the charge down as close to 0 as you’re comfortable, and check the energy consumed in the central info display relative to your current state of charge (reported to the nearest 1% in the mychevy app).

In theory, your kWh used divided by (100% - ending state of charge) = usable capacity.
 

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Hi everyone, we just recently purchased a used Bolt EV from a local Chevy dealer (moving up from a '15 Nissan LEAF)

While it's awesome to see the extended range we get from the Bolt vs the LEAF, we are wondering if we're suffering from excessive battery degradation right off the bat. We'll likely take the car to the dealer to get it inspected, but I wanted to ask here first what everyone's opinions were.

Our car has 13300 miles, 2017 LT model. We removed the Hill Top Reserve to do one full charge to check, and with the Layout on Enhanced, we get the following at full charge:

- w/ Air Conditioning on: 197mi (min 161, max 232)
- w/ Air Conditioning off: 208mi (min 161, max 245)

The max hits the claimed 238mi, but overall I would've expected a new Bolt to have the standard range at 238mi (and not the max, with A/C off).

Is this within range of what we're seeing? Or is this out of the ordinary?

I appreciate in advance everyone's comments.

Kind Regards,
Erick


Your GOM readings mean nothing without knowing the miles/kWh you are getting. Zero out the display behind the steering wheel (DIC). It will default to 3.9 miles/kWh. Go for a long drive and see how many miles/kWh you used. If you are lucky enough to have 60 kWh usable...unlikely since some of us didn't have that from new, then 238÷60=3.966 miles/kWh. If you aren't averaging 4 miles/kWh you can't possibly see 238 miles of range on the center number of the GOM.
 

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Is this within range of what we're seeing? Or is this out of the ordinary?.
Its normal. Drive 45 or 50mph max for a week and see what the GOM says.. You can get it pretty high if you want to.

The only way to really benchmark your range is to drive it and see.. I've not done that from full to empty yet and I'm closing in on two years. Still no desire to do it.
 

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Another way to evaluate is to take a very long trip since full recharge and see what energy usage screen says? Mine is a similar car '17 LT with 13.5 K miles. The max I ever used was 58.3 KW and i still had battery left (although I was too busy to further experiment and run it completely flat in my driveway).
 

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My range early on is all over the place after a charge, but I keep a close eye on it.

With my foot up it's butt and mostly highway driving 60-75mph and then stop and go on the way back for half of the same trip, I still get 225-248 miles per charge, when I'm nice and slow and traffic is good, I have seen estimates easily in the 260mile range.

I'ts gotten more predictable as time has gone on- I have 15K on the clock now.

Just pay attention, use L-mode and (Safely) draft when you can.

I also do 90% charges 90% of the time, and only use 100% once a week just to give it a nice balance charge.
 

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I also do 90% charges 90% of the time, and only use 100% once a week just to give it a nice balance charge.
I just got my Bolt last Saturday: should I charge it to 100% once to do a "balance charge"? Is that the only time it does a balance charge (when you charge to full)? I ask because I set my charge limit to 80% as soon as I got it because I knew not charging to full helps the battery. So I haven't done a single 100% charge since I bought it.

Mike
 

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I assume you are looking at the GOM and turning the A/C on or off to get the range. It's normal for the predicted range to drop if you are using A/C. Like others have said, drive it around for awhile and note your mi/kWh. The GOM will adjust to your driving style.
 

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I just got my Bolt last Saturday: should I charge it to 100% once to do a "balance charge"? Is that the only time it does a balance charge (when you charge to full)? I ask because I set my charge limit to 80% as soon as I got it because I knew not charging to full helps the battery. So I haven't done a single 100% charge since I bought it.

Mike
It appears the Bolt does balance the cells at what ever the charge limit is set at. The caveat, the BMS would do a better balance at "100%". It's suggested to do "100%" now and again. No one really can agree to how often. Some do once a week (hard for me since I only charge that often), others once a month, and then maybe never. Once or twice a year is what I've done. I've maybe done 100% four times since 2017. I just do it when I need the range. The other time was to prep for the propulsion module recall.

Then the battery guys suggest you should bottom balance the cells. I think we're over thinking all this stuff and should just enjoy the car.
 

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OP, your GOM also depends on your driving style and terrain. I recently moved for work and it was a much flatter commute. I was averaging 4.5 mi/kWh this winter-spring compared to last year when I had a more hilly commute going up/down the I-5 corridor (3.7 mi/kWh). Similar weather this Dec-Jun to last year's Dec-Jun, but with a shorter commute (last year: 100 mile, this year: 75 mile), a flatter commute (last year, 200ft elevation change I think, this year only 75ft elevation change according to evtripplanner.com), and a slower commute (last year, 90% freeway, this year, 60% freeway), my efficiency went from 3.7 mi/kWh to 4.5 mi/kWh.

I used the same HVAC settings I always do for this time period, HVAC ON, temp 74F, RECIRC ON, blowing only on my feet, and FAN speed at 2.
 

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I agree that the only way to get an accurate reading is to drive the car. I was seeing anywhere from 190 to 240 miles @ 100% and after a trip over a 10,000 ft elevation mountain pass (from 4,000 feet) with slow driving and averaging over 5 miles / kWh for the trip, the "guessometer" registered 260miles after the next full charge. Value adjusts by the last driving cycle. On my way home from the bay area and climbing up 4,000 feet in elevation, after that trip (from full charge, 210 miles driven, drained battery down to about 3%) (I think I was getting about 3 miles / kWh average, 75MPH uphill), the full charge after that trip the "guessometer" registered less than 200 miles. I have found out that when the range drops below 20 miles it quits registering and it has about 10% capacity left. I also have read that at 0%, it will still drive down to -3% , or another 5-10 miles before it quits driving, but I have not tested that yet. Climbing up in elevation on a one way trip uses about 2kWh extra for every 1000 feet increase in elevation. Usually you get to regen some of that on the way back down but not on a one way trip up to the mountains...... I was getting over 20 miles / kWh on the way down to the valley for the 1st 40-50 miles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks everyone for their posts and comments! I should have stated that we are in South Florida, and it is summer. That said, it still seems like everyone’s findings are still a little bit more optimistic than ours. We had an evening of driving down our beaches in the evening, cruising with no A/C at 30-40mph consistently (extremely frugally). After a 20 mile drive, we put the car to charge (the battery was almost depleted at that point).

After a full charge (and this I’d assume would be the best case scenario), the range was 190 when A/C was turned on. Overall, we had 3.7mi/kWh on the average (this is over 500mi that we’ve had the car for now).

I am going to try that Torque App add-on to see what kind of information we can take. It would be great to see if anyone can track the battery’s state of health like they do in the Nissan LEAF (with LeafSpyPro)
 

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That does seem a bit low. I'm also in south(ish) FL and I typically drive 50-65 MPH (mostly on back roads) and I have my charge limit set to 80% via the UI. For whatever reason (balancing maybe?) the app indicates 83% battery each time charging is complete. At 83% when the charge says "complete", my GOM reports 201 miles with AC on. Now, I've only put maybe 300 miles on the car so I don't know how good of a data point I am.

Now, I will say that the Bolt uses more energy for AC than my Volt did. As I get into traffic and start driving slower, the % energy used by the climate system increases and I've seen it as high as 15%. That makes sense when you think about it: if you're not racking up road distance the balance of power between driving and AC is skewed. I wonder if a higher ratio between climate and driving is causing your GOM to register a lower range?

Mike
 

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I would say its fairly normal. Mine is showing 20 Kwh/100 mi (Last 30 days) but my GOM normally shows about what your seeing. Right now its on a hill-top charge (88%) and it is showing 216 miles. I have 19k miles on mine. My lifetime is 30 kwh/100 mi but keep in mind we have pretty cold winters here in Maryland so the range and efficiency takes a big hit during the fall and winter months.
 

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Once or twice a year is what I've done. I've maybe done 100% four times since 2017. I just do it when I need the range.
Same here. I've only done it a few times to get a good "start" for a longer driving day.
The only thing I would watch out for possibly is to try to not do a full charge in hot weather and then leave it full for a while.
I've always tried to time my full charges to be finished not too long before I start driving. (It can be a couple of hours in my garage, but I don't want it sitting fully charged for a long time. Of course, I will probably find out that you need to leave it plugged in and fully charged to get good balancing and there goes my whole theory.. ;-)

Now, this might not be needed if there is a significant enough buffer. But I've never known what that buffer is. ;-)

As for the OP, it totally depends on the efficiency before. What is your average M/kWh?
Closer to or above 4, the better...

Coming from a Leaf myself, I find the Bolt GoM to be more accurate than the one I had in the Leaf. But that could be just due to the fact that there is a larger battery pack?
Not sure... ;-)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I would say its fairly normal. Mine is showing 20 Kwh/100 mi (Last 30 days) but my GOM normally shows about what your seeing. Right now its on a hill-top charge (88%) and it is showing 216 miles. I have 19k miles on mine. My lifetime is 30 kwh/100 mi but keep in mind we have pretty cold winters here in Maryland so the range and efficiency takes a big hit during the fall and winter months.
You see, that’s interesting because with hill top reserve, we’re getting about 180-190mi total range once charged. We’re averaging 3.6mi/kWh. But if you are doing 20kWh/100 mi, then that’s an amazing 5mi/kWh so it could make sense.

The most we’ve managed is 4.5mi/kWh for a small period when we were cruising on Ocean Blvd in the evening (no A/C) at 40-45mph.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
That does seem a bit low. I'm also in south(ish) FL and I typically drive 50-65 MPH (mostly on back roads) and I have my charge limit set to 80% via the UI. For whatever reason (balancing maybe?) the app indicates 83% battery each time charging is complete. At 83% when the charge says "complete", my GOM reports 201 miles with AC on. Now, I've only put maybe 300 miles on the car so I don't know how good of a data point I am.

Now, I will say that the Bolt uses more energy for AC than my Volt did. As I get into traffic and start driving slower, the % energy used by the climate system increases and I've seen it as high as 15%. That makes sense when you think about it: if you're not racking up road distance the balance of power between driving and AC is skewed. I wonder if a higher ratio between climate and driving is causing your GOM to register a lower range?

Mike
Hey Mike, It’s possible but on the energy info screen (for however accurate that is, we’re scoring high on Climate, between 4.4-5.0 at any given time). So the weather doesn’t seem to be an issue from what the car thinks.

Also, from what you’re saying, it seems like you may have a brand new Bolt. The 2017 (so far as I know) has no charge limit function, only the Hill Top Reserve.

The only way I get 201mi w/ AC on is at 100% if I likely manage to average 3.8mi/kWh or so.

I will be trying to set up the Torque app with the extra files on my phone to see if I can get some PIDs to reference.
 
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