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Discussion Starter #1
Was driving home and didn't have the A/C on... (just outside air).

Then I noticed that the A/C came on by itself. It was *really* hot outside (prob close to 100).

Anybody else ever experience this?
 

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First of all why would you want to torture yourself driving a stifling hot car? Basically what happens is that the thermal management of the battery uses the A/C to control temperature. The Volt A/C is very efficient uses little energy just put it on eco at 72 degrees and drive. You will arrive at your destination sweat free and dry.
 

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The Volts battery TMS and cabin HVAC system is one and the same. When the car senses it needs to cool the battery pack the TMS comes on, as a side benefit cold air comes out of the cabin vents. And while folks in northern states complain about how inefficient the electrical heating is, the AC loop is very efficient. So don't be afraid to use the AC if it's hot and humid out. A comfortable driver is a safe driver.
 

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During my first 2 years of volt ownership, I was continually fiddling with the climate controls, trying to eek out ever EV mile I could. A switch flipped in my head as no matter what I did, I was blowing away any Prius is fuel efficiency and fun factor (just floor it once in awhile). Now I drive it like I stole it, set climate control to Auto Comfort, and take on any and all pony cars and ricer boys at stop lights. so instead of 90mpg I'm getting 70mpg. It's still America's best kept automotive secret.

So don't worry about the AC. The car is smarter than you as it's trying to prevent you from frying your batteries like early Leafs did.
 

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It is also possible that you have the Auto Defogger climate control setting set to On and your Volt's climate control system may have detected high humidity and turned on the AC to remove the moisture from the cabin.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
In the energy section there's a "report card" that shows your energy efficiency which includes, terrain, climate controls, and driving style. I've noticed that if I run the A/C the "climate controls" bar is in the red, whereas if I leave it in fan only, it stays in the green.
 

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Don't get freaked out by graphics, be comfortable, and you will notice the difference in electricity consumption is minimal, and the few cents they represent are worth the comfort :)
 

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In the energy section there's a "report card" that shows your energy efficiency which includes, terrain, climate controls, and driving style. I've noticed that if I run the A/C the "climate controls" bar is in the red, whereas if I leave it in fan only, it stays in the green.
Don't sweat it, don't let your life be ruled by a report card. The Volt's AC will typically use 4 - 7 % of your battery to keep you and your passengers comfortable. When the weather turns colder is when you have to decide whether using the electric heat is worth the loss of EV range. Depending on the outside temperature and climate control setting the Volt's resistance heat can use more than 20% of your battery to warm the cabin. For short trips this may be acceptable. There are smarter ways to keep warm in the Volt: 1)Precondition the Volt, while plugged in, for 10 or 20 minutes before you leave, the cabin will be nice and warm. 2) Use the heated seats and steering wheel if equipped. 3) Understand how Engine Assist Heat works. When set to to On (when temperatures drop below 35) the Volt will cycle the gas engine to generate heat for the cabin or else when set to Deferred (when temperatures drop below 15 degrees then Engine Assist Heat will cycle automatically. 4) Use Hold mode for part of your trip to conserve EV range and generate heat for the cabin. 5) Dress warmly.
 

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Was driving home and didn't have the A/C on... (just outside air).

Then I noticed that the A/C came on by itself. It was *really* hot outside (prob close to 100).

Anybody else ever experience this?
The Gen2 has a big fat AUTO button that controls both the heat/cool and fan.

I press AUTO and set the temperature to a comfortable temperature, usually 72-74 and the system works only so much as it takes to keep the temp there. My dear wife, on the other hand keeps twiddling with the fan speed and temp and never gets it right; driving me up the wall.

Fortunately, for our stability, we don't frequently drive together.
 
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