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Discussion Starter #21
Good lord, the time for attorneys and media is after a problem is un-resolvable...
I totally agree and that will be last resort. I needed to vent! But I did discuss with an attorney and have a "plan b" if nothing goes as it should.
This is the reason I got Torque Pro and a $15 OBDII dongle: so I can keep an eye on my cells. I have not had a problem but if I ever did and the dealer denied doing anything, I can print out the voltage of all 96 cells in about 5 minutes to prove there's at least one bad cell causing the problem
I applaud you are taking that approach - especially to share results with the rest of the community. From my perspective, I'm firmly against that approach only because if something like this goes wrong for any Bolt owner regardless of their technical expertise, they should be able to walk into their dealer and get this solved - without doing independent diagnostics or experiencing what I am going through with my situation. The simple confirmation by the dealer that I have only been able to charge on average for 141 miles should be enough. If my new gas-powered car suddenly dropped 40% in gas mileage within the warranty period you bet most dealers would have the tools at their disposal to solve that. I'm just expecting the same.

I did call the Chevrolet 800 number and was assured that a senior engineer would be calling me on Monday (I was pleasantly surprised at that promise). I also called and had a second conversation with the Service Manager at the dealer and he agreed to start a "Technical Assistance Case" if I brought back. From what I gather Chevrolet would send (fly out) an engineer to the dealer. He also told me that it could take weeks and they would not give me a rental during that time. I'm a bit bothered that I am 10 minutes away from the dealer and if I took this approach I would need to leave at the dealer for "possibly weeks" while they schedule and fly out the engineer. I will press that point if taking that approach.

So the bottom line is I am making progress and will keep you all apprised. Thanks for the help everyone...
 

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This all sounds very unfortunate. Have they given you any plausible reason why this is OK?
 

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Discussion Starter #23
Wanted to give an update on my issue. So as I mentioned in my earlier thread I called the Chevy 800 number. I admit that I was not expecting any success from this and thought for sure I would be connected to an offshore telemarketing unit. I've just never had to call an 800 number to fix my car in 40 years of owning cars. To my surprise, I was connected to Lori, who manages the California region. She seemed honestly interested and gave me confidence she was my advocate. Within a couple of days, a Senior Chevrolet engineer was working with the dealer and no longer was the dealer accusing me of driving inefficiently but they were telling me that through some further conversation with that senior engineer they identified the problem as a faulty "battery #3" (apparently the battery is in different sections and that was the faulty section ). Lori continually called me to follow up every couple of days. Awesome customer service...

Within a week I brought in my Bolt into my dealer and after about two weeks (dealer gave me a loaner Bolt which was nice) I received my car back. After driving the car for two weeks now I can say that the situation is fully solved! I am back to the mileage that I expect to see.

My takeaways: 1. The Chevrolet 800 number is your friend. Use them when the local dealer cannot solve your issue. 2. Obvious battery problems like I was experiencing are occasional and real. If happening to you hold the dealer and/or Chevrolet responsible until they fix.

also, there is a Chevrolet bulletin https://static.nhtsa.gov/odi/tsbs/2019/MC-10168233-9999.pdf that addresses battery range issued October 2019. This was not the issue but those having minor issues should cross that off the list.

Cheers everyone!

RG
 

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Thanks for following up. So it sounds like they replaced module 3 of the 6 modules in the battery pack.

Many thanks for posting the bulletin too. I was not aware that they would limit depth of discharge to avoid running out of juice, without giving any warnings. This means that the low capacity of our Bolt could indeed be a defective cell or cells, and we won't know until the capacity drops below some threshold they have decided upon.

Category 1 – Defective Individual Battery Cell
Unique to the Bolt EV and not available on other GM
products, the vehicle will lower the available EV range
based on the individual battery cell with the lowest state
of charge. This helps prevent a large voltage drop in a
defective cell, but it does not set a diagnostic code or a
Service Vehicle Soon light indicating that remedial
action is being taken by the Hybrid/EV Propulsion
Control Module #2. The only indication to the driver is a
reduced EV range estimate. Follow the Hybrid/EV High
Voltage Battery Reduced Range Analysis procedure in
SI to determine if this is the reason for the customer’s
range loss and replace the appropriate battery section,
if needed. Note the state of charge variation % on the
repair order.
 

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"[GJETSON] Many thanks for posting the bulletin too. I was not aware that they would limit depth of discharge to avoid running out of juice, without giving any warnings. This means that the low capacity of our Bolt could indeed be a defective cell or cells, and we won't know until the capacity drops below some threshold they have decided upon. "

Well the reduced capacity is reflected in the GOM so in that respect there is a warning. The discharge must be stopped when the lowest cell reaches cutoff so that it will not be damaged. The worst cell will determine the range of the vehicle. BTW, you can also see this with Torque Pro if you are so inclined. It might be nice if it threw a code at some point.
 

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I'm glad they got this resolved for you. Not making excuses for the initial response, but driving characteristics and conditions are the most likely cause of owners seeing decreased range. However, that shouldn't be assumed. Even with improved QC, faulty cells are common enough that a request from a customer should result in a quick battery diagnostic, which would show them the faulty cell, module, or section quickly.
 

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Well and that Technical Service Bulletin should have been discovered by the mechanic originally. That's generally one of the first steps. Who knows why that did not happen.

I'm glad GM got that resolved for you.
 

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The worst cell will determine the range of the vehicle. BTW, you can also see this with Torque Pro if you are so inclined. It might be nice if it threw a code at some point.
Yup. Been tracking my best and worst cells for over a year. [edit] Make that over two years...time flies. Wouldn't be without it.

12-29-18-3.jpg
 

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I'm glad they got this resolved for you. Not making excuses for the initial response, but driving characteristics and conditions are the most likely cause of owners seeing decreased range.
Yeah, for every person with a degrading battery there are probably 100 people wringing their hands about why their perfectly good car doesn't show the EPA-rated range. So it's not surprising that it's hard to convince people that there's an actual problem. This is where knowing your car and your driving style is important - if you're getting significantly different results from driving the same route in the same conditions then there's reason for concern.

But I still suspect that you'll need to go to your dealer with a pretty solid case in order to get them to believe you to the point where they'll actually run diagnostics on it.
 

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I realize this thread is pretty old but I joined just to discuss this.

I bought a used 2017 Bolt Premiere right before the pandemic in February. I primarily drove it 40 miles to work and could easily make 4-5 trips back and forth without charging.

Since everything closed, I wasn’t driving. So I left it in my parking space around 70% charge. Though I would take it out for a short 10 mile errand once or twice a month.

I am now not fully back to my old commute, but I do make this trip about once a week and I find that I need to charge for a bit when I get down there otherwise I won’t be able to make it back. At full charge in Northern California weather, my GOM tops out at 120 miles MAX. I drive well, never speed, and without climate control and can just barely do one round trip with a comfortable buffer. I am usually around 4.5 in terms of kw/mi or whatever. I haven’t seen my GOM above 200 since February.

I got the battery down to 3% then charged to 98% and saw the amount of energy given was about 40 kWh, which doesn’t feel right. I brought it to the dealer and they told me “the weather is different so the car won’t let you charge it more, if there was a problem the display would tell you.” I’m not sure how much I believe that now after reading the posts here.

Should I be pushing this further or do I have irrational fear here? If I should be pushing this, what data do I need to collect?
 

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my GOM tops out at 120 miles MAX
That's low enough to push further. Welcome to the forum. Several forum members have had this happen and the car didn't throw any codes. And multiple times the dealer didn't do anything because the car didn't throw any codes. They need to run a full battery diagnostics to show a bad cell. One forum member took the initiative to get they're own battery readings through the OBDII port and then the dealer believed them. Hopefully your 2017 is under 100K miles so it's covered under warranty.
 

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II got the battery down to 3% then charged to 98% and saw the amount of energy given was about 40 kWh, which doesn’t feel right.
You are looking at 42 kWh usable. Clear the DIC trip odometer. Do a 100% to one bar range test. This doesn't need to be done all at once. Your normal driving until you reach one bar is fine. Take photos of the DIC trip odometer distance and Wh/mi, and energy use screen. If the dealer doesn't get it, contract GM.
 
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