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Does anyone out there know if the Bolt EV's interior seals out the outside air like a Tesla Model S does? Or will I smell the Harris Ranch when I drive past it on the way down to LA? LOL!
 

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Does anyone out there know if the Bolt EV's interior seals out the outside air like a Tesla Model S does? Or will I smell the Harris Ranch when I drive past it on the way down to LA? LOL!
Not sure where the issue is but you'll smell every outside odor inside the Bolt. The Gen II Volt (and every other car I've owned in the past 15 years) does a very good job at not allowing outside odors to enter the car. The Bolt is terrible, even with the recirculation engaged. In fact, the recirculation button seems to do nothing. I don't notice any difference whether it's on or off.

If I knew where the problem was, I'd take a can of great stuff or caulk and close up the gaps.......wherever they are. I hate being able to taste the salt brine from the highway inside my car with the windows rolled up.
 

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I wouldn't say it's "sealed" perse. However, I would imagine if you had it on recirculate it would prevent it from taking in the "stinky air" and continue to filter the air already inside the car. This was true with my Aveo, and holds true with my Bolt.

Our waste plant off of the highway when I venture the 20 miles north to Bloomington isn't an issue in the dead of summer when it smells terrible.

I guess if it was BAD enough it would make it through, but at that point it's going to challenge any filtration system. lol



Best.
 

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Not sure where the issue is but you'll smell every outside odor inside the Bolt. The Gen II Volt (and every other car I've owned in the past 15 years) does a very good job at not allowing outside odors to enter the car. The Bolt is terrible, even with the recirculation engaged. In fact, the recirculation button seems to do nothing. I don't notice any difference whether it's on or off.

If I knew where the problem was, I'd take a can of great stuff or caulk and close up the gaps.......wherever they are. I hate being able to taste the salt brine from the highway inside my car with the windows rolled up.

That's crazy, I haven't had that issue...
 

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I wouldn't say it's "sealed" perse. However, I would imagine if you had it on recirculate it would prevent it from taking in the "stinky air" and continue to filter the air already inside the car. This was true with my Aveo, and holds true with my Bolt.

Our waste plant off of the highway when I venture the 20 miles north to Bloomington isn't an issue in the dead of summer when it smells terrible.

I guess if it was BAD enough it would make it through, but at that point it's going to challenge any filtration system. lol



Best.
Maybe my filtration system is defective but when comparing the Gen II Volt and the Bolt, it's night and day.
 

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Maybe my filtration system is defective but when comparing the Gen II Volt and the Bolt, it's night and day.
It's certainly possible.

I had the Fram "Freshbreeze" Carbon filter in my Aveo, and put one in my Bolt as well. It might not be an air leakage issue, possibly the filter is simply inadequate.?
 

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It's certainly possible.

I had the Fram "Freshbreeze" Carbon filter in my Aveo, and put one in my Bolt as well. It might not be an air leakage issue, possibly the filter is simply inadequate.?
New filter, same problem. Can't say for sure but it would seem that the filter is there for the cabin air so if it's on recirculation then you shouldn't smell outside odors.
 

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Interesting. That's the way it is for me. If I smell something like a skunk and say "oh god" and hit recirculate it fades away, it doesn't just spin around the car same as my Aveo was.

Either that or the salt is just REALLY bad.

Idk what to suggest really. There has to be a reason it's getting through.
 

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It's my understanding that the HVAC system in all cars is required to admit at least a bit of outside air even when set to "recirculate".
 

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Not sure where the issue is but you'll smell every outside odor inside the Bolt. The Gen II Volt (and every other car I've owned in the past 15 years) does a very good job at not allowing outside odors to enter the car. The Bolt is terrible, even with the recirculation engaged. In fact, the recirculation button seems to do nothing. I don't notice any difference whether it's on or off.

If I knew where the problem was, I'd take a can of great stuff or caulk and close up the gaps.......wherever they are. I hate being able to taste the salt brine from the highway inside my car with the windows rolled up.
I think what you're saying is the Bolt has more holes to the outside than the Gen II Volt. If this is the case, I agree. The Volt was quieter inside compared to the Bolt (tested by eating my lunch in my car). The Volt did still let in outside odors, however, just more slowly than the Bolt.

It's my understanding that the HVAC system in all cars is required to admit at least a bit of outside air even when set to "recirculate".
Yep. There's also the vent holes at the rear of the Bolt. Eventually, some outside air will seep in whether you like it or not.
 
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The Tesla Model S has a very sophisticated HEPA air filtration system. The principle filter is about 10 times larger than the typical cabin filter, and is capable of much finer air filtration.

The Bolt has no such system.

I’ve never noticed any issue with air quality in the Bolt, but the cabin is definitely not sealed against outside air infiltration.

There’s a thread on how to upgrade the Bolt’s basic filter to one that’s more effective. it’s a simple and inexpensive upgrade, and that may help with cabin odors.
 

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I once made the horrible mistake of stopping for lunch near the Harris Ranch feed lot on I-5. Never again.

But as for my Bolt: I am also of the opinion that the recirculation button doesn't. I get a blast of diesel exhaust from the big pickup truck in front of me (driven by a guy who obviously has a serious size issue) regardless of whether the button is on or off. Perhaps an activated carbon charcoal filter for the cabin will help: there is another topic on this forum regarding how to get this done.
 

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I once made the horrible mistake of stopping for lunch near the Harris Ranch feed lot on I-5. Never again.

But as for my Bolt: I am also of the opinion that the recirculation button doesn't. I get a blast of diesel exhaust from the big pickup truck in front of me (driven by a guy who obviously has a serious size issue) regardless of whether the button is on or off. Perhaps an activated carbon charcoal filter for the cabin will help: there is another topic on this forum regarding how to get this done.
Exhaust fumes are another issue too. If the outside air isn't coming through the filter as opposed to another opening somewhere, there's no filter that's going to correct the problem.

For the winter I've been using Rain-X 2-in-1 all season washer fluid. When I spray it, the smell immediately enters the cabin. Is the fresh air intake close to the wipers? What's a good way to test the recirculation function?
 

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Exhaust fumes are another issue too. If the outside air isn't coming through the filter as opposed to another opening somewhere, there's no filter that's going to correct the problem.
The only reason that air might come in via a route other than the filter is if you have the HVAC system's fan turned off. (Or if you have a window open.) With the fan turned on it should draw air into the vehicle through filter, which would create a positive pressure inside the vehicle, forcing air OUT through any other openings.
 

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I have found my Bolt is too well sealed

I mean, not really, I think it's fine from a filtration perspective. I haven't found outside odors creeping in excessively, but I have found that on cold mornings I have to turn on the HVAC fan to simply pull in outside air otherwise the windows fog up from occupants breath. I (or the kids in the back) are perfectly comfortable with the seat warmers, but I am still forced to run the fan (not heat) with recirc turned off just to keep the windows from fogging up. I'm always trying to maximize the efficiency and not run the fan when it isn't needed. I actually wish there was a way to select more passive fresh air exchange. I was thinking this morning that what I really need is one of those kick panel fresh air vents like I have on my old Blazer.
 

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I agree in general with T25: the recirculate button doesn't seem to do much. But the stench of ICE cars (especially diesels) doesn't seem to be as intense as in my old Honda, even when the recirculate button was on.
 

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...I'm always trying to maximize the efficiency and not run the fan when it isn't needed. I actually wish there was a way to select more passive fresh air exchange.
The fan is negligible in terms of energy consumption. It's only when you have the heater or A/C on that it has a noticeable impact on range.

I often hit the "Heat and A/C" button to turn off heat and A/C and then select the windshield vents to blow air up onto the windshield to deal with mild fogging. If you turn off recirculation that keeps most of the occupant's moist breath away from the windshield.
 

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Hey, I've always used the smell at Harris Ranch as a clear indicator that I'm exactly halfway between LA and San Francisco. Don't know what I'd do if that smell went away.
 

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The fan is negligible in terms of energy consumption. It's only when you have the heater or A/C on that it has a noticeable impact on range.

I often hit the "Heat and A/C" button to turn off heat and A/C and then select the windshield vents to blow air up onto the windshield to deal with mild fogging. If you turn off recirculation that keeps most of the occupant's moist breath away from the windshield.
We are seeing very different behavior. Just last night I tried to do exactly what you described: with just the HVAC on (both Heat & AC and recirc off) I can see a ~10 % change in range estimate (220 --> 200mi) by turning HVAC on an off. The air blowing out the windshield vents is warmer than the outside air. I wish that there were more visibility to select just fresh air fan as I would expect that to be minimal energy consumption.
 

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We are seeing very different behavior. Just last night I tried to do exactly what you described: with just the HVAC on (both Heat & AC and recirc off) I can see a ~10 % change in range estimate (220 --> 200mi) by turning HVAC on an off. The air blowing out the windshield vents is warmer than the outside air. I wish that there were more visibility to select just fresh air fan as I would expect that to be minimal energy consumption.
I'm not sure exactly what you're saying here. What I said was that the fan only with HVAC off is negligible in terms of energy consumption, and your statement above confirms that. If you push the "Heat and A/C" button on the screen so that the little red "light" indicator is off, then it shouldn't use the heater. When I have Heat and A/C off I've never seen the heater come on even when the climate control temperature is set considerably higher than the ambient temperature. The only exception to that might be if the battery itself needs heat, because I think it may share the same heater as the HVAC system...?
 
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