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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

Does anyone know if it is possible to have the Bolt remained in the "Accessory" position while parked? Is there such thing?
Otherwise, is there a safe method to leaving the car parked in my driveway and leaving it on?

Reason I ask is that we are using the OnStar unlimited data plan to supplement our very slow rural broadband. It is not enough bandwidth for our family to use it for zoom meetings or virtual classrooms simultaneously. The AT&T unlimited data hotspot from the car is a good option for the time being. I was under the impression the car can be off when I signed up, that's what the Onstar rep told me. I come to find out that's not the practical case, and the car should be on or in "accessory", which I don't believe is available on the push-button start Bolts.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated?

I've look into the manual and explore the remote start option. But it times out after 20-min or 40-min intervals. Hoping to have this work where I can have the wifi on for at least 4-hr blocks during the day for work and school

Thanks!
 

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2019 Chevy Bolt LT, Cajun Red
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Others will pipe in with more knowledge, but my understanding is that you can leave the bolt on unattended without issue; It will only stay on for 2 hour periods I believe, at which time you will need to go out and "restart" it.
 

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2021 Bolt Premier
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Others will pipe in with more knowledge, but my understanding is that you can leave the bolt on unattended without issue; It will only stay on for 2 hour periods I believe, at which time you will need to go out and "restart" it.
The alternative is to turn on the car, make sure the e-brake is on, put it in Neutral, climb out the passenger door and lock it with the door button. This will keep the vehicle "on" until the traction battery is depleted.

I also put a couple of wheel chocks on the rears as a precaution, as my driveway is sloped. I did this to provide 1kW of AC out of a 12V inverter attached to the aux battery, to power my refrigerator during a grid loss. The Bolt's DC-DC will provide up to 1.6kW DC to the 12V PbA AGM battery, but conversion and wire losses resulted in a max of 1kW AC at the sine-wave inverter load, in my experience.

All of this is moot, as I now have two Powerwalls attached to the 5kW of PV on my roof. Regardless, I have backup, and car camping is an option now, too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The alternative is to turn on the car, make sure the e-brake is on, put it in Neutral, climb out the passenger door and lock it with the door button. This will keep the vehicle "on" until the traction battery is depleted.

I also put a couple of wheel chocks on the rears as a precaution, as my driveway is sloped. I did this to provide 1kW of AC out of a 12V inverter attached to the aux battery, to power my refrigerator during a grid loss. The Bolt's DC-DC will provide up to 1.6kW DC to the 12V PbA AGM battery, but conversion and wire losses resulted in a max of 1kW AC at the sine-wave inverter load, in my experience.

All of this is moot, as I now have two Powerwalls attached to the 5kW of PV on my roof. Regardless, I have backup, and car camping is an option now, too.
Neat! I like what you did to power the fridge during power outage. We have a LP generator, it can get temperamental, so good to know the Bolt can be a backup source. I'm also surprised it can run up to 1kW, maybe I can use it to run a small window air conditioner for camping trips in the desert.

BTW, when you said climb out the passenger door. You didn't have to climb out the window right? You can open the door with the lever, then lock it once outside with the button and the car remains on? I planned to be parked next to the charger so not too worry about traction battery running out in case I forget to shut it off.

Thanks!!
 

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Good for powering the vital loads in the house, but I would not consider it a camping mode because it can not be used with the car plugged in to a power source at a camp site. If I stay at a camp site I want to charge over night and be ready to leave the next day... it would be nice to be able to lie down in the back, charge, AND have the car stay "on" so I have climate control.

Keith
 

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There was a lot of discussion on "camping mode" threads about having the Bolt stay on for long periods of time. That is why I suggested that subject to search for (for the question asked by the OP). But I give you permission to call it whatever you like . ;)
 

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There was a lot of discussion on "camping mode" threads about having the Bolt stay on for long periods of time. That is why I suggested that subject to search for (for the question asked by the OP). But I give you permission to call it whatever you like . ;)
I wasn't complaining about you, and hope that it didn't seem that way... I was complaining that Chevy hasn't given us a "real" camping mode :)

Keith
 

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I tow my Bolt on a tow dolly behind my motorhome, and I did some testing on it when I first got the car. As "GregBrew" said, it can be left on indefinitely when left in neutral. In my test I didn't try climbing out the door and locking it behind me, since it was inside my garage. I also tried parking brake on and off and that made no difference. Of course, you would prefer to have the parking brake on so the vehicle doesn't roll, but for my purposes I would leave my car powered on while strapped to my tow dolly so I wouldn't have to worry about it rolling away. In both cases it ran all night in my garage (8 hours +). During cold weather I could jumper the Bolt's 12V battery to the motorhome's 12V house battery and I could run the DC forced air blower in my motorhome's furnace and stay toasty warm while boondocking without having to run the RV's gasoline generator. I haven't yet had the occasion to do this! If used just to power the wifi hotspot you could also plug it in to your EVSE and that would keep the HV battery topped up indefinitely.
 

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Nope, when you plug in the EVSE the car shifts to park, giving you 2 hours of run time before shutting off.

Keith
This is why I'm disappointed in the lack of a REAL camping mode. The workaround is most definitely not ideal:
1) Because it's in Neutral with the parking brake activated, the car turns on the low speed alarm. Gotta pull a fuse
2) I definitely have concerns regarding safety here. It's a lot easier to accidentally disengage the parking brake in N than it is to accidentally shift the vehicle out of P since there is a side-button interlock for getting out of P.
3) Last but most certainly not least - you can't have an EVSE plugged in.

In an ideal world, a proper camping mode and not the various workarounds that have been identified would have the car in the fully "on" state (HV battery contactor pulled in, APM active, HV running climate control) even with an EVSE attached without time limits, with both parking brake engaged AND the vehicle in Park not Neutral.

What's sad is that this one would be a fairly easy software feature for Chevy. :(
 

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Good for powering the vital loads in the house, but I would not consider it a camping mode because it can not be used with the car plugged in to a power source at a camp site. If I stay at a camp site I want to charge over night and be ready to leave the next day... it would be nice to be able to lie down in the back, charge, AND have the car stay "on" so I have climate control.

Keith
Oh. I guess GregBrew was talking about unplugged. I was recalling my experience "car camping" in the garage. If you are camping you expect to be plugged in charging. That would be a huge improvement for me.
 
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