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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

I'll be traveling on business for a month and was wondering if I should leave the car plugged into the 240V receptacle or not? It's in my garage and out of the weather and is secure, so it's really an issue of what is best for the batteries and electrical usage (if any). While I wouldn't expect the batteries to decline significantly (I'm guesstimating 10% with no supporting data :), I also would like to find the vehicle with at least 50% charge when I return. Is there any info on this topic?
Thanks.
 

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You'll likely lose ~1%, so return with a 99% charge if left unplugged. The owners manual says the following (pg 259):
Up to Four Weeks
. Plug in the charge cord.
Four Weeks to 12 Months
. Discharge the high voltage
battery until two or three bars
remain on the battery range
indicator (Battery symbol) on the
instrument cluster.
. Do not plug in the charge cord.
. Remove the black negative (−)
cable from the 12-volt battery
and attach a trickle charger to
the battery terminals or keep the
12-volt battery cables connected
and trickle charge from the
underhood remote positive (+)
and negative (−) terminals. See
Jump Starting - North America
0 295 for the location of these
terminals.
If it were me, I'd keep it plugged in. If it were 6+ weeks, I'd likely do the storage routine.
 

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Do you have a family member or friend who can go drive it about 25 miles (and plug it back in) once or twice while you are gone? I'm sure they would like that.
 

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I'm sure you wouldn't have anything to worry about even if you left it alone but I'm sure if you leave it plugged in, all should be okay.
 

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Do you expect temps below 32F or above 90F while you'll be away?
If neither- you don't need to plug it in. I'd top off the main battery to 75% and leave it at that.

If you're dead-set on leaving it plugged in while you're away- enable "hilltop reserve" mode to cap the main battery charge at 90%.

Typically, Li cells shouldn't be stored at full charge for weeks at a time without use.
 

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I did two weeks recently and had it plugged in. I know it's been stated above what the manual states to do. Also, I take the emergency brake off as it sticks really bad on return from all the exhaust fumes and dirt that gets blown around while my car sits still. This time I kept the emergency brake off and it worked fine on the first drive back from vacation - no sticking.
 

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If you really want to play it safe and have someone monitor it, look for vehicle storage services, they do just about everything that needs to be some. Some even perform maintenance services.
 

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If the owner's manual says it's fine to plug it in for up to four weeks, then I don't see a problem with doing so. You can combine it with the "hilltop reserve" mode suggestion and have 90% charge by the time you get back.
 

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I did two weeks recently and had it plugged in. I know it's been stated above what the manual states to do. Also, I take the emergency brake off as it sticks really bad on return from all the exhaust fumes and dirt that gets blown around while my car sits still. This time I kept the emergency brake off and it worked fine on the first drive back from vacation - no sticking.
I haven't heard of emergency brake sticking due to other people exhaust fumes and dirt and stuff. That's a new one for me.. definitely something to look out for and keep in mind.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the feedback and pointer to the manual on page 259. While I appreciate the brevity of the index of the Bolt's manual, I also find it a challenge at times to find what I am looking for. As I'm in the San Francisco Bay Area where we don't really have 'real weather' and there aren't any extremes in heat or cold (and the car is garaged), I think I'll be safe to have it be somewhere between 75-90% charged and leave it sit. The parking brake issue mentioned is a new one for me. I doubt that the ambient dirt and dust is any threat given the tough conditions of operation for the brakes, but I don't generally set the parking brake anyway unless on a hill. Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
A bit of a real world experience on this topic; I went on vacation for 3 days and 7 hours (79 hours) leaving the car in the garage and noted the mileage when I left and then when I returned. It stayed the same at 239m. The car was not driven. The temperature was typical SF Bay Area with day time temps around 70 and evenings in the 60s so nothing too extreme. Given the stability of the charge, I'd have no problem leaving it for a month (4 weeks) and unplugged. Given that the charge loss is so minimal I'd leave it unplugged for safety reasons. Nothing in particular to support leaving it unplugged, but why have the charge in the car if it's not needed. Should something go wrong, it's one less failure point.
 

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Make sure you have about 70% in the HVB and don't worry about it.

When the vehicle cord is not plugged in
  • The Hybrid/EV Powertrain control module (HPCM2) will check the 12V battery every 4 days (2.5 to 3 days) and if the voltage is below a threshold of 12.0 may activate battery maintenance. If the high voltage battery state of charge is greater than 40% and the propulsion system is not active, Hybrid/EV Powertrain control module (HPCM2) will send the voltage set point to the engine control module (ECM). The engine control module (ECM) will send this to the 14V Power Module. Battery maintenance mode will charge the battery for 45-90 minutes..
 
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