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Battery replacement - problems found after work was done.

3125 Views 14 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Fred_B
I took my 2013 Volt to the dealer (Norman Frede Chevrolet in Clear Lake, Texas) for a battery replacement and coolant change (5 year from manufacturing date) last week.

Today I noticed the rear cargo cover would not close all the way. I found several problems, and uncovered a few more when I removed the whole plastic 'tub' that holds the EVSE and air compressor.
The problems found were:

1. there are two tabs in the rear center of the plastic piece under the cargo cover (which holds EVSE, air compressor, etc) These are supposed to fit into a corresponding slot at the rear of the car under the tailgate latch, and there are four 10mm nuts in the corners of the plastic piece. The mechanic had not inserted these tabs into the slot, instead the tabs were resting on top of the slot so the cargo cover would not close all the way and lay flat (no picture of this.)

2. the steel plate that mates with the magnet in the cargo cover underside had come off, and was stuck to the magnet. I can fix this with some 5-minute epoxy. The magnet is also loose (a potential rattle) so I will epoxy that in place at the same time.

3. The battery vent hose was left unconnected. However when I push it into the hole in the battery, there is nothing locking it in place, it can easily slide back out. Update: there IS a very slight 'click' when pushed in all the way, and I secured the hose to the side of the battery with some tape as a backup.

Also, if you follow the procedure in the maintenance manual ("Battery Replacement) exactly, it says to disconnect this hose when removing the old battery, but does NOT say to re-connect the hose when installing the new battery (it is shown in the diagram however).

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4. The mechanic left his 13mm wrench inside the car! This looks like a safety hazard if it should contact the battery terminals bouncing around in there:

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As a technician myself (Dodge) I can see both sides of this.

One the one hand is doing the job right. In a perfect world you are aptly compensated financially and with an abundance of time to do the job comfortably, as a surgeon would be. You read the procedures, perform the task and then check your work. Everything as it was, give it a spit shine, send it on it's way and move on to the next job.

But this is not a perfect world. The manufacturers present unrealistic flat rate times to perform procedures that clearly will take more time than you (the technician) are being paid. So you rush to try to meet the time and not lose money. Then the dealership management, firmly believing more is better, over staffs the shop with technicians, and overbooks the schedule. So you end up with more work than you can possibly do in a day and a hoard of howling service writers looking for their cars to get done first.

And as a plot twist, the service manager, knowing he'll make more money by getting lower paid techs and lube jockeys to do advanced work, will cram as much work through quick lube and the younger techs as possible.

I'm a careful worker, and I've been forced into mistakes myself by not being firm enough with the service writers and fellow techs. Get pulled off a car to work on a waiter, or have a fellow tech distract you while you're in the middle of something can end in an error.

The game is rigged as so, and the deck is stacked against both you, the customer, and the technician trying to make a living providing service.
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