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If GM botches the High Voltage Battery Recall is it Your last GM Vehicle?

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A cap at 90% battery would have very little impact on long trips.
I hadn't really thought about it that way.

So a 90% battery cap on say a 2020 Bolt would reduce your long range ability from whatever it is now (for the sake of argument 700 miles) to 10% less of the nominal full charge, so again for the sake of argument it cuts 25 miles off the long range capabilities, or in my made up top end number of 700 miles it would cut one to 675 miles?

(and 700 is indeed a made up number, as that depends far more on the number of times you are willing to sit at a fast charger before deciding you are done driving for a day - so it could be 300 miles for one driver and 1500 miles for another)
 

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I hadn't really thought about it that way.

So a 90% battery cap on say a 2020 Bolt would reduce your long range ability from whatever it is now (for the sake of argument 700 miles) to 10% less of the nominal full charge, so again for the sake of argument it cuts 25 miles off the long range capabilities, or in my made up top end number of 700 miles it would cut one to 675 miles?

(and 700 is indeed a made up number, as that depends far more on the number of times you are willing to sit at a fast charger before deciding you are done driving for a day - so it could be 300 miles for one driver and 1500 miles for another)
Yeah, that's about right. So essentially, as long as you can make it to your first charging stop, the impact on your longer trips is actually very small. Using my regular 500-mile trip in my 2017 as an example, my first stop would need to be maybe 160 to 180 miles out instead of 180 to 200 miles out. From that point forward, my trip time is essentially the same. It's the same three 30 to 40 minute charging stops to travel the remaining 320 to 340 miles.
 

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This thread asked if the battery issue, AND GMs response to it, would impact the purchase of another GM vehicle.
My Bolt isn't part of the recall, but GM's response to the recall will influence my future car purchases.... However I don't consider what has happened so far the totality of GM's response.

When they eventually find the issue if they need to actually recall all the battery packs and do so in a timely manner, the whole thing probable has minimal impact on my choice to purchase a future car from GM. If whatever they do leaves all the existing cars at 90% cap and they offer sufficient compensation for that state and offer reasonable a buy back for people who can't deal with that I'll probably still be neutral. If they need to keep the cap and offer no (or insufficient) compensation I'll take the as a sign that if they can't make their suppliers make people whole that they won't either, and will assume any future GM purchase might ultimately get me far less then what was on the table in the first place (i.e. I would be a lot less likely to buy from GM). If the ultimate solution is actually better automated pack monitoring + resumption of the original range + something to make up for the months of reduced capacity (which I think would be fair to be less then I would expect for a permanent reduced capacity) my reaction would be neutral. If GM offers some sort of above average compensation (like they did for the Saturn recall in 1991 or so) I would be somewhat more likely to buy from GM again.

However since GM hasn't actually found the root cause, or signaled what sort of resolution they are looking at for the issue I'm not currently able to say what my response will be.

You are well within your rights to decide you don't want another GM car based on your experience so far. I mean it has been what two months or so. If your personal line in the sand is you need more information in two months then "we know nothing, keep waiting" that is entirely reasonable. It just isn't where I am.
 

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Heat destroys batteries, then they lose power in the cold because it slows the chemical reactions. AGMs have a reputation for lasting longer
You hear that all the time "heat destroys batteries", but it's not a rule. I've been living in the hot South for 25 years now and I just replaced a 7.5 year old Advance Auto "Silver Line" battery in my 2002 Impala. But just about every battery I've ever had (OEM or aftermarket), I get 5 years out of them. Never had one die under 4 years. No way!

I think it has something to do with how you run the vehicle. My batteries have always been exposed to lots of highway driving ... even 900-mile one-way jaunts anywhere from 2 to 4 times per year! And my regular work commute is 25 miles each way of mostly highway speeds of 70-75 mph. My feeling is ... this is why my batteries last for me.

But ... I guess there is such a thing as a defective battery from the factory, too ... but I'd like to see the data on the driving conditions of the vehicle that battery was in.
 

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You hear that all the time "heat destroys batteries", but it's not a rule. I've been living in the hot South for 25 years now and I just replaced a 7.5 year old Advance Auto "Silver Line" battery in my 2002 Impala. But just about every battery I've ever had (OEM or aftermarket), I get 5 years out of them. Never had one die under 4 years. No way!

I think it has something to do with how you run the vehicle. My batteries have always been exposed to lots of highway driving ... even 900-mile one-way jaunts anywhere from 2 to 4 times per year! And my regular work commute is 25 miles each way of mostly highway speeds of 70-75 mph. My feeling is ... this is why my batteries last for me.

But ... I guess there is such a thing as a defective battery from the factory, too ... but I'd like to see the data on the driving conditions of the vehicle that battery was in.
Highway driving probably keeps it cooler under the hood... but have to agree with your 5 year average. Where the proof may lie is with batteries not under the hood next to the engine. And AGM batteries may be different than wet lead acid too.
 

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I blame my bad luck from living off a dirt road. Vibration destroys batteries is my theory. Oh, and all that other stuff.
I think cars destroy batteries. Specifically, some cars are hard on batteries for some reason.

It was a big debate on the Audi A3 forums when the batteries started failing after 2 or 3 years. Many thought it was unusually high accessory load when the car was off, but after a lot of investigation it wasn't found to be unusual. No clear cause was ever determined but my batteries have only lasted 2-3 years for 15 years of ownership. Also, another theory was heat from the engine compartment but the V6 models had the battery in the trunk and they saw early failures as well.
 

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Just a comment about the recall. I have an aquaintance who works in the GM battery lab. Let's give them a break. Imagine this: You think you have a good product. You suddently get a few (how many 5, 6, 20?) reports of battery problems. OMG! What is in common? They were all fully charged. What must we do?

1) Prevent additional fires and liability
2) Figure out what the basic problem is and fix it

So clearly step number one is to avoid fully charging the batteries. This gives you time to figure out the real problem. It is not trivial, especially since it happens relatively infrequently. Yes, I'd love to have it fixed right away, but as an engineer (not related to batteries) I totally understand that finding the root problem for something like this, and then working out a fix that does not involve costing the company half the price of the car for each car fixed is a HARD problem.
 

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My Bolt isn't part of the recall, but GM's response to the recall will influence my future car purchases.... However I don't consider what has happened so far the totality of GM's response.

When they eventually find the issue if they need to actually recall all the battery packs and do so in a timely manner, the whole thing probable has minimal impact on my choice to purchase a future car from GM. If whatever they do leaves all the existing cars at 90% cap and they offer sufficient compensation for that state and offer reasonable a buy back for people who can't deal with that I'll probably still be neutral. If they need to keep the cap and offer no (or insufficient) compensation I'll take the as a sign that if they can't make their suppliers make people whole that they won't either, and will assume any future GM purchase might ultimately get me far less then what was on the table in the first place (i.e. I would be a lot less likely to buy from GM). If the ultimate solution is actually better automated pack monitoring + resumption of the original range + something to make up for the months of reduced capacity (which I think would be fair to be less then I would expect for a permanent reduced capacity) my reaction would be neutral. If GM offers some sort of above average compensation (like they did for the Saturn recall in 1991 or so) I would be somewhat more likely to buy from GM again.

However since GM hasn't actually found the root cause, or signaled what sort of resolution they are looking at for the issue I'm not currently able to say what my response will be.

You are well within your rights to decide you don't want another GM car based on your experience so far. I mean it has been what two months or so. If your personal line in the sand is you need more information in two months then "we know nothing, keep waiting" that is entirely reasonable. It just isn't where I am.
I believe GM has found the problem and that the fix will start in February. I’m going see
My Bolt isn't part of the recall, but GM's response to the recall will influence my future car purchases.... However I don't consider what has happened so far the totality of GM's response.

When they eventually find the issue if they need to actually recall all the battery packs and do so in a timely manner, the whole thing probable has minimal impact on my choice to purchase a future car from GM. If whatever they do leaves all the existing cars at 90% cap and they offer sufficient compensation for that state and offer reasonable a buy back for people who can't deal with that I'll probably still be neutral. If they need to keep the cap and offer no (or insufficient) compensation I'll take the as a sign that if they can't make their suppliers make people whole that they won't either, and will assume any future GM purchase might ultimately get me far less then what was on the table in the first place (i.e. I would be a lot less likely to buy from GM). If the ultimate solution is actually better automated pack monitoring + resumption of the original range + something to make up for the months of reduced capacity (which I think would be fair to be less then I would expect for a permanent reduced capacity) my reaction would be neutral. If GM offers some sort of above average compensation (like they did for the Saturn recall in 1991 or so) I would be somewhat more likely to buy from GM again.

However since GM hasn't actually found the root cause, or signaled what sort of resolution they are looking at for the issue I'm not currently able to say what my response will be.

You are well within your rights to decide you don't want another GM car based on your experience so far. I mean it has been what two months or so. If your personal line in the sand is you need more information in two months then "we know nothing, keep waiting" that is entirely reasonable. It just isn't where I am.
Check out the post from Boxster1971 concerning battery failure. It appears the fix may come in February. GM says the problem has to do with the high tech foam around the battery pouch not being packed tightly enough. The GM spokesperson said this issue was conveyed “all the way to the top” whatever that means.
 

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The Complaints;
1. Overly slow WIFI - I have complained to GM and on this forum over the years. 2. Poor quality AGM failing a few months on the wrong side of 3 years. 3. HV battery recall with no real fix Yet (Most concerned about #3 issue). All together the issues are combining to make me turn sour on GM;
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The CORPORATE REACTION;
(Paraphrasing Executive office reps' response);
"We are just a call center and can only help facilitate getting You help with the dealer". I said; What help will going to a dealer if they don't even have a permanent fix and they don't have EV certified mechanics anyways? They said "That's all we can do sorry about Your luck Sir".
.
MY REACTION; THIS IS BS. I AM REALLY STARTING TO GET RILED UP AT GM. I CAN GUARANTEE IF GM DOES NOT DO SOMETHING SIGNIFICANT THIS WILL BE MY LAST GM ... ALSO, I DO REALLY BELIEVE THESE CARS WILL BE VIEWED AS TAINTED AND THE RESALE VALUES ARE AND WILL TAKE A "NESTEA PLUNGE" AS A RESULT... I MAY ALSO GO TO SOCIAL MEDIA TO FURTHER VENT MY FRUSTRATIONS THE ONLY THING STOPPING ME THERE IS I AM NOT FULLY OUT OF PATIENCE YET AND I DON'T HAVE A LOT OF SPARE TIME...

But here is their information if anyone else wants to give a try ...
ph;
855-880-1500
email;
[email protected]
Other than screaming (in upper case) and complaining, what are you asking for? The recall is for the benefit of safety ("out of an abundance of caution" is so overused these days). For the time being, you have the option of (1) having the interim recall performed to temporarily limit SOC to 90%, (2) use hilltop reserve or selected limit whenever you don't need full range, or (3) just ignore everything and take a very small fire risk - If yours burns, I would imagine you would be among the first to sue. How often do you need the full range anyway?

I'm sure that GM engineers are devoted to addressing this quality issue with a small number of batteries and will come up with an acceptable long-term fix. This is not the first, nor will it be the last lithium ion battery design with a fire risk, albeit small - every battery, just like every gas tank has some risk. Many more gasoline cars have been recalled for fire risk, some not successfully - google Kia. But like the COVID vaccine, putting something half baked out there will do more harm than good. Relax! You live longer that way (blood pressure, less aggression, etc.)

If you don't like the WIFI speed, just don't purchase it - see if you can do better with ATT, Verizon, etc. as a WiFi hotspot.
 

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Here are my unsubstantiated thoughts about GM which perhaps you may judge as bitter or harsh. And although I have not worked for GM or any other car manufacturer I have a little understanding of how big business works particularly when it comes to inherent product problems identified after the sales and receipt to the customer. I suspect that GM already knows quite well what the problem is and probably has more than one possible course of action they are considering and evaluating. Likely that they had a pretty good understanding of the cause of the problem and possible solution at the time they informed the public not to charge to 100%. I also suspect that GM is now in the "wait and see how upset the market gets". How much bad publicity this causes and what potential adverse impact on future sales. I guess mid February is sufficient time for the public to voice the level of dissatisfaction. By then GM will have been able to estimate not just the cost of correcting the problem, but also the cost of not fixing it and measure the adverse effect to marketing and sales. GM only focus is to make a profit, if they appear to be benevolent and considerate it's because they've judge that course of action will yield greater profit. Don't kid yourself if the fix does not out weights the liability there will be no fix. In this case I do believe the liability is greater and GM will provide a fix. Question remains is when and to what level of customer satisfaction will the solution offer? And for the latter I don't have high expectations. Ok, so am I bitter or harsh or just realistic?
 

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GM says the problem has to do with the high tech foam around the battery pouch not being packed tightly enough.
That makes sense. I worked on a battery pack design that used 3 sets of 4 cells in a stack. The manufacturer of the pouch cells had a compression requirement. I.e. Don't let the cells freely expand when they heat up during charging. There had to be some compressive force on them and a dense Poron foam was used.. I assumed that the free expansion would allow too much movement of internal cell components, possibly causing damage.

Even if it's a single location where this is a problem, it would be a lot of work to fix. If it's multiple locations... that's a hella big fix. At that point it may make more sense to swap packs with rebuilt ones. VW/Audi did this for faulty DSG transmission mechatronics. Your mechatronics would be replaced by a rebuilt one and yours would get sent to the factory to get rebuilt and then put in someone elses car.
 

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Thank you. By the way, I just got another recall notice (I'm on GM's naughty list for not having my software updated yet). To quote the GM recall notice:
I haven't done the recall update on my '19 Premier either, no interest in going back to the dealer. I just turned the charge limit down a notch. My car lives outside in the driveway, not in a garage, and I am NOT worried about a battery fire.
 

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Thank you. By the way, I just got another recall notice (I'm on GM's naughty list for not having my software updated yet). To quote the GM recall notice:
I got a written notice from GM telling me they had no record I had done the recall a couple days ago; about 1 month after the local Chevy dealer did the recall. (I verified the actual patch number was the same on both the letter and the service invoice). So you can’t win.
 

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I suspect that GM already knows quite well what the problem is
I agree. I don't think this is "rocket science" for those intimately involved with it for years now. The failure modes were fairly well understood right from the beginning. I don't think they're surprised in the least with what they're facing right now. It was something they hoped wouldn't happen, but it has, and frankly, I'm surprised they weren't sitting there with the solution ready to go - even rolling out the upgrades before the first fire happened. Heck - they've had 4 years to work on iterative improvements.
 

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Here are my unsubstantiated thoughts about GM which perhaps you may judge as bitter or harsh. And although I have not worked for GM or any other car manufacturer I have a little understanding of how big business works particularly when it comes to inherent product problems identified after the sales and receipt to the customer. I suspect that GM already knows quite well what the problem is and probably has more than one possible course of action they are considering and evaluating. Likely that they had a pretty good understanding of the cause of the problem and possible solution at the time they informed the public not to charge to 100%. I also suspect that GM is now in the "wait and see how upset the market gets". How much bad publicity this causes and what potential adverse impact on future sales. I guess mid February is sufficient time for the public to voice the level of dissatisfaction. By then GM will have been able to estimate not just the cost of correcting the problem, but also the cost of not fixing it and measure the adverse effect to marketing and sales. GM only focus is to make a profit, if they appear to be benevolent and considerate it's because they've judge that course of action will yield greater profit. Don't kid yourself if the fix does not out weights the liability there will be no fix. In this case I do believe the liability is greater and GM will provide a fix. Question remains is when and to what level of customer satisfaction will the solution offer? And for the latter I don't have high expectations. Ok, so am I bitter or harsh or just realistic?
I would say you're possibly just unrealistic. As you noted, you're just guessing, and I highly doubt GM is waiting to see how upset the market is. Yes, they've probably done an initial assessment to see how much this would cost, but the truth is, it's only going to cost GM a fraction of what it will cost LG. More than likely, GM has been spending this time testing, validating, and conferring with LG Chem about replacement modules.

The more time that goes by, the more likely it is that Bolt EV owners are going to see a complete battery replacement (at least the modules within the battery, which is tantamount to a complete replacement). If the rumors above are true, and it was a manufacturing defect with how the cells were packaged into modules (it makes sense that Hyundai suffered similar fire issues), they need lead time to gather enough battery modules to start swapping out old existing modules with new modules.
 

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"The more time that goes by, the more likely it is that Bolt EV owners are going to see a complete battery replacement " from your words to GOD's ears! ;)
 

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The battery non-fix is a real issue for the pre-2020's, I have a 2020 and all I can do is hope I don't get the same problem down the road. I hope a settlement comes for the owners.
The wifi issue is not a Bolt issue, in-car wifi has always sucked, probably always will. Not worth paying for.
OEM batteries also always suck, my OEM battery on my Ram truck dies in 3 short years, I was pissed too, then I heard from all the forums how the makers all skimp on 12v batteries. Now, with the Bolt being an EV, you'd THINK they'd put a beefier 12v in, but from everything I've read the Bolt has the same crappy level 12v as every other car.

Overall, at least for me, the Bolt is a perfect commuter car, a blast to drive, and will save me thousands in gas and ICE repair costs. I have zero regrets and think GM put out something truly unique and special.
 

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Not if the root cause is the foam around the cells. That's all on GM.
No, that is LG. LG packaged the cells into groups, modules, and sections. The foam that is being described is inside the module housing itself, which means it was manufactured and packaged by LG. Again, this is likely why the Hyundai Kona Electric had a similar issue.
 
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