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2013 Charger needs to be replaced, what are your thoughts (also MM question)?

2430 Views 22 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  dvancleve
Howdy folks. My fam's 2013 has about 155K miles on it, and unlike a lot of Volts I think it has done at least 100K of them on gas. It stopped charging a couple months ago, Chevy dealer says the charger (silver box near the right front wheel) is bad. On the bright side, it is also expensive ($1500ish) and backordered with no ETA. To the best of my knowledge, the car was still getting 35+ miles per charge but my kids drive the car in another state so I don't see it much any more.

Here are my questions... Do I have any realistic option for replacing the charger other than a dealer? I called a couple places that work on hybrids and EVs and both said if they replaced the part they wouldn't be able to do the programming and at least one gets their parts from the dealership.

Second question, with concerns about the probable life of the propulsion battery AND factoring in a $2500 bill for the charger, what are your thoughts? The car was babied by the original owners, other than apparently doing lots of road trip driving, but my kids have been kinda tough on it. It really needs a new front bumper cover, for instance.

Since the car can't be plugged in to charge, it seems like using MM at least for freeway/highway driving might be a good idea. My understanding is that MM charges the battery to a certain level then stops, so would it make sense to just leave it in MM when not on surface streets?

Thanks, Doug
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My 2011 has 188,000 miles on it. My on board charger failed some 5-6 years ago and was replaced by my dealer under the Voltec warranty. The fault was that it would charge on L1 120V but not on L2 240V. Try both chargers on yours and see if maybe L1 works. But my opinion is to fix it. My math calculation shows I’ve saved $20,000 on gasoline in 180,000 miles vs the BMW 3 series it replaced. So you should save the $2,000 expense in 18,000 miles. Assuming you can plug in regularly. Side note: Change the 12V battery if it’s age is unknown, or it’s older than 4-5 years. Catastrophic expense has been caused by simple failure of the 12V.
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Thanks :) Is your HV battery original and unmolested?

I tried an L1 charger when the car was "home" in AZ a couple weeks ago, no dice. The HV battery, which has always been fine, is the unknown. Fixing it for $2500 is a no brainer, but it would stink if it didn't buy much trouble free time/mileage. As of today they can L2 charge daily for cheap (possibly free, we haven't figured out if it affects their utilities at all), but they are renters so it is always possible they'll end up somewhere that charging isn't a daily thing. The 12v battery is less than a year old...
Yes my 2011 has an untouched HV battery. I’m probably a bit better off than other northern Volt owners (Michigan) in that I have a small furnace in my garage area. It only runs in very cold winter weather, thermostat is set on 46 or so. The garage is partially earth sheltered as well and never goes above 70 in summer. I believe control of the battery temp this close probably is helping it’s longevity. It always plugged in and spending 95% of its life in that garage. Still gets 27-32 miles range.
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Is it possible your Volt’s inability to charge from the wall socket is a problem with the charge port on the side of the car, rather than the charging unit itself?
This a good point as in my case the dealer first replaced the charge port with no success.
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