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Discussion Starter #1
I was just reading around and happened upon the law that will be in effect as of 2018 requiring EVs and hybrids to produce artificial noise. I knew it was going to be mandated eventually but I didn't realize it was going to be so soon...

I personally hate the noise the Volt makes (I can hear it clearly inside the vehicle unless my radio is on), and pulled the Pedestrian Protection fuse to disable it because I'm always careful around pedestrians anyways (and have driven a hybrid ever since I got my learner's permit 7+ years ago, so I'm used to people not being able to hear my vehicle).

I'm curious as to whether or not it would be possible to modify or replace the noise generator module to change the noise it produces. The current one sounds like a small blender running a small distance away and the sound repeats about every 2 seconds, which drives me insane if I have to listen to it for any extended period of time (such as at a red light). I'd prefer some sort of higher-pitched electronic sound that doesn't sound like a cheap WAV file repeating over and over.

I'd imagine if there's one fuse that disables that noise and the external "ping" sound, it's probably a fairly simple module with relatively few inputs and could probably be mimicked by something like an Arduino with a sound chip on it.

Has anyone ever tried to find this module and reverse engineer it yet?
 

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So there is a specific fuse that only covers that one item in the car? Where would one maybe find this fuse? I happen to live in the country with not many pedestrians, and deer don't care about noise considering all the big loud trucks that hit them.....
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So there is a specific fuse that only covers that one item in the car? Where would one maybe find this fuse? I happen to live in the country with not many pedestrians, and deer don't care about noise considering all the big loud trucks that hit them.....
Rear fuse box near the 12V battery; I think it's fuse F5, but don't quote me on that. The inside of the fuse box cover has a diagram and the fuse in question is labeled "PED PROT" if I remember correctly.

Of course, for liability's sake, I'm not suggesting you do pull the fuse, but for sanity's sake, I'm also not suggesting you not pull it ;)

EDIT: I should note that pulling the fuse disables the "chirp" that occurs when you plug in the vehicle or if the charge cycle is interrupted, but I find having the chirp is not worth the annoyance of the artificial noise.
 

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I must be the exception, I don't mind the sound, in fact it reminds me of the "white noise" generator my daughter uses in our grand daughters room. It puts me to sleep too.....
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I must be the exception, I don't mind the sound, in fact it reminds me of the "white noise" generator my daughter uses in our grand daughters room. It puts me to sleep too.....
I think I'm so used to hybrids that don't make noise (I've driven hundreds to thousands of miles in a Highlander and an MKZ, neither of which have noise makers) that the addition of an artificial "running" noise just stands out too much to me.

I've also been told by other people that I can hear things most people can't, usually in response to me commenting on the sound of things and people responding with "that makes noise?" so perhaps I'm just more sensitive to it :p
 

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I think I'm so used to hybrids that don't make noise (I've driven hundreds to thousands of miles in a Highlander and an MKZ, neither of which have noise makers) that the addition of an artificial "running" noise just stands out too much to me.

I've also been told by other people that I can hear things most people can't, usually in response to me commenting on the sound of things and people responding with "that makes noise?" so perhaps I'm just more sensitive to it :p

I guess it depends on when you hear it. I only hear it as I back out of my garage (window needs to be open) or when I'm creeping through a drive through (again only with the window open).
 

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Nice they made it so easy to disable. I had to unplug the speaker in my Leaf, and then it turned on a light. GM should go one step further and do some anti-deer research, then provide a proper deer disabling sound! Pedestrians are not an issue where I live, but deer sure are.
 

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AS far as I can tell, pulling the fuse only disables two sounds, the blender noise and the charging chirp. My Volt is blissfully silent and I have a spare fuse now. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I guess it depends on when you hear it. I only hear it as I back out of my garage (window needs to be open) or when I'm creeping through a drive through (again only with the window open).
I can hear it from inside the car with the windows up if the blower and radio are low enough. It's not loud, but I can hear the 1-2 second long repeating loop just enough for it to start to drive me crazy at red lights...
 

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Yeah, the audio transition is terrible on whatever recording they used. I'm guessing that fuse just disconnects an external, fixed-volume speaker from the car's audio system. Would be the cheapest solution to me. If this were the case, they should've provided a set of sounds that tested average among a wide range of users (not most favorite, not worse, but average). Then we'd have a higher chance of picking something we can live with and not worry about individual tastes such as with cell phone ring tones.

I wonder, if that fuse is just a jumper from the Volt's audio system to the external speaker, you could theoretically intercept the speaker connection with a small digital device with audio out (e.g., arduino, pi, greeting card digital recorders). Depending on if that external speaker needs an amplified input will determine what device you can use.

A "simple" test I would think is to attempt to capture voltage changes across that fuse relative to car chassis as an audio recording. Of course, probe it to make sure you're not going to blow the ADC on whatever sound card you'll be using. Heck, I think pricier oscilloscopes support exporting to PCM *.wav files now, with proper downscaling of real-world voltage levels (5V+) to sound card friendly voltages.

If capture of the voltage changes results in a sound file that you can play on a computer, chances are you could intercept that audio and output your own by installing a device near the fuse box.

Of course, if this were the case, why can't GM just offer this as a service? It should be as easy as the recall for upgrading android auto in MY16 Volts. Simply replace X sound file inside the infotainment system that represents the pedestrian warning.
 

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Wait a second, the Volt makes a noise?!

I hear mechanical whirring when the car is moving or in gear, but holy cow you would have to be in like a silent recording booth to be able to tell it was moving toward or away from you. Almost silent. (And fantastic)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Wait a second, the Volt makes a noise?!

I hear mechanical whirring when the car is moving or in gear, but holy cow you would have to be in like a silent recording booth to be able to tell it was moving toward or away from you. Almost silent. (And fantastic)
It's that noise we're talking about; the quiet whirring. I can hear it inside the car with the windows up unless I have the radio on. Goes away the second I put it in Park.

I pulled the fuse, and now the car is eerily quiet; more so than the other two hybrids I've driven.
 

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Here in Puerto Rico no law requires a noise maker, so if I do get an EV, I will pull out the circuit fuse, too. I prefer silent cars, and there is plenty of noise from other sources here anyway. I dream of stopping at a traffic signal, and only hear fans and radios while I wait!
 

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It's that noise we're talking about; the quiet whirring. I can hear it inside the car with the windows up unless I have the radio on. Goes away the second I put it in Park.

I pulled the fuse, and now the car is eerily quiet; more so than the other two hybrids I've driven.
Wait, really?! I totally though that was actual mechanical sound. That's a fake sound added after the fact? Will it trigger a check engine light or OnStar message if I pull it on my 2017 lease? What fuse are we talking about? Now I'm curious...
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Wait, really?! I totally though that was actual mechanical sound. That's a fake sound added after the fact? Will it trigger a check engine light or OnStar message if I pull it on my 2017 lease? What fuse are we talking about? Now I'm curious...
Nope; when the car's not moving, it "should" be entirely silent. That noise you hear is just a speaker. It's a 10A fuse in the box near the 12V battery labeled something along the lines of "pedestrian protection" but I can't remember the exact wording. I haven't had any codes thrown or warning lights on, and it was even left out during the 2.5 week battery segment replacement I had performed. They did several inspections on the vehicle after the replacement was complete and the fuse was still in the glovebox where I left it when I got the car back....I was sure they were going to put it back in, but alas, they didn't even notice it was gone!
 

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Nope; when the car's not moving, it "should" be entirely silent. That noise you hear is just a speaker. It's a 10A fuse in the box near the 12V battery labeled something along the lines of "pedestrian protection" but I can't remember the exact wording. I haven't had any codes thrown or warning lights on, and it was even left out during the 2.5 week battery segment replacement I had performed. They did several inspections on the vehicle after the replacement was complete and the fuse was still in the glovebox where I left it when I got the car back....I was sure they were going to put it back in, but alas, they didn't even notice it was gone!
That's CRAZY! It's so almost silent (besides inside the cabin funny enough) that I seriously didn't think that was a fake noise! I really don't think anyone would hear that over the normal drone of sounds coming from a parking lot or something. Honestly I really only hear it when backing into my garage and the windows are down. In fact, I have noticed shifting into R increases the sound a little bit, again still a generic mechanical sound but slightly different tone and very slightly increased in volume. Again I only notice it if I'm outside the car, windows are down, or radio is totally off.

I was slightly surprised that the car wasn't damn near 100% silent but I figured since it had all the normal bits of a car maybe fans or coolant pumps or something were running so it wouldn't be pure EV silent running... still a HUGE improvement from a normal car. I'll have to figure out where the fuse box location in the 2017 is and dig around looking for it. That's so crazy!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
That's CRAZY! It's so almost silent (besides inside the cabin funny enough) that I seriously didn't think that was a fake noise! I really don't think anyone would hear that over the normal drone of sounds coming from a parking lot or something. Honestly I really only hear it when backing into my garage and the windows are down. In fact, I have noticed shifting into R increases the sound a little bit, again still a generic mechanical sound but slightly different tone and very slightly increased in volume. Again I only notice it if I'm outside the car, windows are down, or radio is totally off.

I was slightly surprised that the car wasn't damn near 100% silent but I figured since it had all the normal bits of a car maybe fans or coolant pumps or something were running so it wouldn't be pure EV silent running... still a HUGE improvement from a normal car. I'll have to figure out where the fuse box location in the 2017 is and dig around looking for it. That's so crazy!
There is a very very faint "whine" that I can hear even when in park, which is probably the inverter. Otherwise any other "idle" noise that occurs even when the climate control is off is that artificial noise.

The fuse box in the Gen 2 is under the carpet in the trunk; if you can manage to grab the edge of the carpet right against the very back wall of the car, it pulls up a panel to reveal the 12V accessory battery and a fuse box, as well as the tire inflation kit.
 

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There is a very very faint "whine" that I can hear even when in park, which is probably the inverter. Otherwise any other "idle" noise that occurs even when the climate control is off is that artificial noise.

The fuse box in the Gen 2 is under the carpet in the trunk; if you can manage to grab the edge of the carpet right against the very back wall of the car, it pulls up a panel to reveal the 12V accessory battery and a fuse box, as well as the tire inflation kit.
Cool, I'll have to get the book out and give it a look tonight. Do you have a 2017? Have you noticed pulling the fuse also kills the little charging chirp when you plug in a 120 Volt charger? Has it killed the drivers controls for the passenger and rear windows? Those are the two little bits I've seen mentioned from other people but I'm not sure if they were 2016 or 2017s that they were talking about...

I've got a 2017 LT.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Cool, I'll have to get the book out and give it a look tonight. Do you have a 2017? Have you noticed pulling the fuse also kills the little charging chirp when you plug in a 120 Volt charger? Has it killed the drivers controls for the passenger and rear windows? Those are the two little bits I've seen mentioned from other people but I'm not sure if they were 2016 or 2017s that they were talking about...

I've got a 2017 LT.
I have a 2016, and yes, the charging chirp is disabled because it comes from the same module. I haven't had any other features not work since pulling it. All my windows work fine from the driver controls, including auto-down.
 

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Thanks to this thread, I pulled the F5 fuse labeled "pedestrian pro" on my 2017 volt. I wasn't sure I heard anything before but it's definitely quieter now when going down the road. I only hear the AC fan running this morning.

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
 
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