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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2011 volt. My check engine came on, so I called Onstar. After 3 minutes on hold, the lady said they cannot communicate with my car and I should try later. Their tech team told her they were too busy to talk to me and the light should go off upon next reboot, without even asking anything.

Fast forward last night, Onstar still cannot get to my car, although the online app CAN! I call, they apologize, etc. I ask what am I paying for if I get a light and they cannot fix the problems, so they say take to dealer. I am not paying $100s to get it looked at of fixed. It is an Onstar problem! It is like the cable company asking you to pay for a new box if your cable dies.

Also, I did run out of battery on the way home last night and the engine came on just fine.

Anyway, so this morning, noticed the light WAS off, but also noticed it did NOT even come on as the car started up, to show it is working.

Where do I go from here? Onstar is useless, obviously an engine problem/glitch and I am not forking $100 to the dealer for their problem. ??
 

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Sometimes a check engine light comes on because of something as simple as a bad voltage from a public charger, or a charge port door that didn't close quite right. When this happens, if it is not a persistent error, the light will usually turn back off after making three trips with the car.

If you want to know for certain, you could get a compatible OBD2 reader and pull the codes yourself if/when it happens again. There's a document online that has all the DTC's the Volt throws, so you could reference and then decide whether or not to take it in.

As you probably know, if it is a Voltec-related error, you're covered for 8 years/100,000 miles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
ok, I will do that, but shouldn't Onstar problems be covered by Onstar? I am paying $$$ for their service and they blew me off with 'try later'

BTW, it wasn't public charging station, I do not use them, or charge port door, sine I electriced up that morning, 9 hours befrfore

also, what does 'voltec-related' mean, does it include electric propulsion system?

Finally, shouldn't the engine icon come on upon system startup, for a second or two? I didn't imagine that these last 8 weeks, did I?
 

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ok, I will do that, but shouldn't Onstar problems be covered by Onstar? I am paying $$$ for their service and they blew me off with 'try later'

BTW, it wasn't public charging station, I do not use them, or charge port door, sine I electriced up that morning, 9 hours befrfore

also, what does 'voltec-related' mean, does it include electric propulsion system?

Finally, shouldn't the engine icon come on upon system startup, for a second or two? I didn't imagine that these last 8 weeks, did I?
Are you actually paying? I thought 2011 Volts had OnStar included for 5 years. Either way, if it is an OnStar issue, yes, they should be providing support. Is the OnStar LED light in your car green (on the ceiling)? Can you still remote start with your RemoteLink phone app? If so, maybe it was just a single OnStar glitch. You could press the button now and, even with the check engine light off, ask them to run a diagnostic. They will likely come back after and say "everything looks fine" versus "I couldn't connect"

Voltec-related means anything "EV" in the car... The high voltage battery, the electric motors, the inverter, etc. that comprise the "Voltec" system.

The check engine light should come on briefly when you press start, I believe, just prior to the LCD behind the steering wheel displaying all the normal stuff. You may find it does that next time (but didn't this time since it was clearing the code after 3 vehicle trips).
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Are you actually paying? I thought 2011 Volts had OnStar included for 5 years. Either way, if it is an OnStar issue, yes, they should be providing support. Is the OnStar LED light in your car green (on the ceiling)? Can you still remote start with your RemoteLink phone app? If so, maybe it was just a single OnStar glitch. You could press the button now and, even with the check engine light off, ask them to run a diagnostic. They will likely come back after and say "everything looks fine" versus "I couldn't connect"
Thank you very much. After 2 dealer calls, a Volt Advisor Call, and Onstar call from a landline, they DID apply the remainder of the 5 year Onstar service. I am covered for free thru 10/2016 with a refund of my last 3 months!

Ok, my online app reads the car fine, unlocks and locks doors fine, but Onstar still cannot read diagnostics or send a route to my nav with 'virtual advisor' (New symptom)...I give it an address, i get put on hold for 2 minutes and virtual advisor says 'Problem sending route, I will transfer you'! If I take it in with the Onstar doesn't work, verified by Onstar, do THEY cover the repair?
 

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Ok, my online app reads the car fine, unlocks and locks doors fine, but Onstar still cannot read diagnostics or send a route to my nav with 'virtual advisor' (New symptom)...I give it an address, i get put on hold for 2 minutes and virtual advisor says 'Problem sending route, I will transfer you'! If I take it in with the Onstar doesn't work, verified by Onstar, do THEY cover the repair?
Probably not. The OnStar SERVICE is what you're paying for (or have for free now, and you're welcome, glad that worked out! ;) ) but the hardware is GM's. I'm not sure when you got this Volt; any chance it came with a partial warranty? You could always have the dealer estimate a cost for you. It sounds like some communications module isn't working quite right. WopOnTour may have insights as to what could cause some functions to work but not others.

EDIT: Glad it is fixed, was it just a software/communications issue on OnStar's side? No need for a repair?

I feel like the OnStar service is generally overpriced, by the way, except that the crash response feature is almost priceless. Because of that one feature, I will probably pay for OnStar when my subscription ends, and hope that I'll never need to use it. The remote start and lock/unlock from the phone is fantastic, but without the crash response, is not worth the monthly fee IMHO.
 

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I have only seen one time a problem with them pulling the codes in 3 year - the engine light was off the next day before I could have them try again.

If you need the code sooner many auto places will get it for you FREE (IF the light is on )

even that one time they offered to transfer call to tech volt support
 

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Probably not. The OnStar SERVICE is what you're paying for (or have for free now, and you're welcome, glad that worked out! ;) ) but the hardware is GM's. I'm not sure when you got this Volt; any chance it came with a partial warranty? You could always have the dealer estimate a cost for you. It sounds like some communications module isn't working quite right. WopOnTour may have insights as to what could cause some functions to work but not others.

EDIT: Glad it is fixed, was it just a software/communications issue on OnStar's side? No need for a repair?

I feel like the OnStar service is generally overpriced, by the way, except that the crash response feature is almost priceless. Because of that one feature, I will probably pay for OnStar when my subscription ends, and hope that I'll never need to use it. The remote start and lock/unlock from the phone is fantastic, but without the crash response, is not worth the monthly fee IMHO.

Just keep in mind, in the event of a serious crash, your battery will not work, therefore, OnStar will not send help.
I realized this when I purchased a new 2013 corvette with OnStar. I found out they did not monitor my battery, which kept dieing after being parked for long periods of time. Then I asked OnStar if I had an accident, and my battery died, how could I push that button for help? I told them if they simply monitor vehicle batteries and notify people when they start to run low, it would help people and by doing this they would know when a vehicle suddenly loss all power and could look up the location of the vehicle and send help. The system is flawed in that respect. I did really appreciate the other things they offered. I just hope one day, they include battery monitoring .
 

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Just keep in mind, in the event of a serious crash, your battery will not work, therefore, OnStar will not send help.
I realized this when I purchased a new 2013 corvette with OnStar. I found out they did not monitor my battery, which kept dieing after being parked for long periods of time. Then I asked OnStar if I had an accident, and my battery died, how could I push that button for help?
The OnStar module in the Volt has it’s own dedicated emergency battery. It’s a lithium cell and not rechargeable. If you’re in a crash and the car has no power, OnStar should work for a few hours.
 

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And if you check the way-back machine, you'll find some concern about that lithium battery getting activated during a 12v swap and prematurely draining. It turned out to be not the case for the Volt, some other Chevy models apparently DID have that problem.
 
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