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I have been checking out 2 2014 Volts recently and test drove one. Found the car to be very smooth ride and quiet and I'm interested but need to know a few things.

1. My RT commute is longer than most of the posts I've been seeing. 120 miles with no place to recharge at work so I imagine I'll add gas and change oil more often than most. Does the oil need to be changed at a dealer (I'm not handy) since the computer needs to be reset or would an oil change place be qualified?

2. I have no garage no I'd be plugging in outside. My outlet is used for things like my leaf blower and pressure washer. Would this be sufficient and how to I protect the cord in the rain and snow?

3. The cars I'm looking at currently have 41,000 and 36,000 miles on them. How long does the battery usually last and what is the approximate cost of replacement?

Any other advice would be welcome. Thanks.
 

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I have been checking out 2 2014 Volts recently and test drove one. Found the car to be very smooth ride and quiet and I'm interested but need to know a few things.

1. My RT commute is longer than most of the posts I've been seeing. 120 miles with no place to recharge at work so I imagine I'll add gas and change oil more often than most. Does the oil need to be changed at a dealer (I'm not handy) since the computer needs to be reset or would an oil change place be qualified?

2. I have no garage no I'd be plugging in outside. My outlet is used for things like my leaf blower and pressure washer. Would this be sufficient and how to I protect the cord in the rain and snow?

3. The cars I'm looking at currently have 41,000 and 36,000 miles on them. How long does the battery usually last and what is the approximate cost of replacement?

Any other advice would be welcome. Thanks.
Oil is changed every two years or when the oil life monitor gets low (say 20% or below). Not complicated to change, but for $40 bucks, I get the oil changed and the tires rotated and a handy receipt.

Protecting the cord really isn't necessary as it is already weather proof, but a simple idea and creativity can easily solve anything you are looking at protecting. I recommend changing the outlet if it is old or worn and also making sure it is a dedicated outlet with cover, (nothing else on it) so it doesn't trip the breaker.

Battery should last the life of the car and should never need changed. The car comes with an 8 year or 100k warranty on the battery.
 

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I agree with the above post. Oil is no different than changing on any other car. As for resetting, it's all done through the driver information screen menus by selecting the oil life meter and holding down one of the buttons (select I think) until it asks if you wish to reset.

Although the cord is weather proof, it's not water proof (just resistant) so just hanging a plastic bag over the outlet to protect from getting wet during such weather would be a good idea, and some members have placed the actual EVSE electric unit inside a rubbermaid type box with holes cut on either end to allow the cords to come out to give some extra protection. If your outlet is covered by a patio, you shouldn't need to do much to weatherize as you just want to avoid large amounts of moisture from getting into the device or wall outlet.

Battery is really no concern at all. I don't believe there has been any documented failure of the entire battery, although some members have had to have sections replaced. There are 4 battery packs that make up the Volt battery which makes it less expensive than replacing the entire unit if one should fail. Keep in mind that If you have a CARB car, it should benefit from an extended warranty on the battery to 10/150K but that may only apply to cars sold in CA, not just those that conform to CA standards. Other members may be able to confirm or correct that statement. Even the standard Voltec (battery, and related equipment) warranty is 8/100K so you should still have plenty of warranty left on anything you pick up.

I know there are a number of Volt drivers with very high mileage and no known battery issues. In fact, one member on Voltstats has over 400K and has never had any battery issues. GM knew when they built the Volt that they "had to get it right" and as a result is likely one of their most reliable products to date. When it comes to the battery, they only utilize about the middle 65% of the total capacity giving it a buffer so prevent it from charging too much, as well as discharging too much. Lithium Ion, doesn't like extreme states of charge, so reducing that window and giving a small buffer on either end has proven to make for very low failure, as well as very long life.
 

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An ordinary outdoor 120V outlet in good condition is totally sufficient to support the Volt. It will fully charge overnight (~10 hours).

Resetting the oil life indicator can be easily done by the driver by pressing some buttons on the dashboard.

Considering your commute distance and lack of charging at work, you will obviously be driving mostly on gas. The car will still work great that way, but be aware that a really efficient non-plugin hybrid like a Prius will probably do the same commute on about the same amount of gas as a Gen 1 Volt, so you don't really have a slam-dunk use case here. A Gen 2 will do much better.
 

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You'll need a pair of ramps (or a jack if you so desire... I recommend ramps) but other than that the oil change on the Volt is even easier than my Jeep and that is saying something.

Don't go cheap on the oil filters or the quality of oil. You won't be changing it that often so it's not going to be that expensive over time.

You might want to glance at this thread regarding the outlet.
Primer: Level 1 Volt charging and your home electrical system

The EVSE itself is weather proof but of course you should take the usual precautions with the outlet (an outdoor cover if needed)
 

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As others have said, there is nothing unusual about changing the oil in the ICE. Because the oil will be good for so long a time, buying quality products makes sense. I use GM oil filters and synthetic oil meeting the Dexos requirements and I do it myself. Resetting the Oil Monitor back to 100% is extremely easy and is explained in the Owner's Manual.

I want to point out that you will feel physically much better at the end of the commuting day having driven the 2014 Volt as opposed to a Prius. I owned a Prius so I speak from experience.

Driven moderately the Volt will give you around 40 mpg or better. The lifetime mpg on my 2014 with 53k+ miles on the odometer is 42.

Be aware that what has been written about the battery is about the large traction battery. The 12V battery under the rear compartment floor will last 4-6 years. Your car will announce the need to replace the 12V battery by doing weird things. 8^)
 

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I purchased a 2014 myself in April. It was a CPO so I have a B2B warranty until 1 May 2018 and then extended warranty on rest. When I used mine on a long trip, we had 3 adults plus all the stuff 2 females need plus a dog. I ran 70 - 75mph between Indiana and Virginia, so we had some mountains to go over. My overall average on that trip was 43+ mpg. If you go with the Volt, you WON'T be sorry :)
 

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Welcome!
The 14 is a very good choice in my opinion, prices are good, and they don't wear out much.

How long will you have to charge between commutes? The Volt has two charge settings, defaulting to 8 amps at 110V. This can take around 8 hours, (while you sleep), but If you don't sleep much, the 12 amp setting will do it in around 5, but could stress an old outlet.
- it is more sustained than most loads.
A good guide is the thermal output of the parts. Regularly feel the connections and if any are more than luke warm, then you must investigate.

The economy of this car is so good that you'll still do very well on a long drive like that.
One of the great advantages of the Volt is the ability for you to choose when you use the battery. Any time you select, 'hold', mode, the car goes into charge sustain mode, holding the battery's level of charge at that which it was when you pressed it.
This means you can save the battery for your return trip, or select to use some of it while going through slower sections, etc.
Once the battery gets to its low threshold, (about 20% in real terms, but displayed as empty), then the same charge sustain mode will activate automatically and remain active until the car receives some charge from mains.

I charge my 2012 outside all the time, and only make sure that the charge module isn't swimming. Never had any problems.

The battery is very well looked after thermally and not taxed nearly as much as any other vehicle. The only few reports of problems have been very isolated and of course jumped on by baggers.

GM engineered a pretty bullet proof car here. Enjoy, and report back here often.
 

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The Volt has two charge settings, defaulting to 8 amps at 110V. This can take around 8 hours, (while you sleep), but If you don't sleep much, the 12 amp setting will do it in around 5, but could stress an old outlet.
12 Amps takes about 8-9 hours.

8 Amps takes around 14-16.

I wish it was possible to charge in 5 hours at 12amps/120V, but you're talking L2/16A charging territory there, not L1.
 

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12 Amps takes about 8-9 hours.

8 Amps takes around 14-16.

I wish it was possible to charge in 5 hours at 12amps/120V, but you're talking L2/16A charging territory there, not L1.
Longflare is in Australia. Don't they run 220 everything there?
 

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Longflare is in Australia. Don't they run 220 everything there?
I believe you are correct :)

My L2 charger charges my Volt in about 3.5 hours.
 

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Yeah, I'm an Aussie.
I have little experience of 110V, and I thought I'd gleaned from others here how long it took. Now I understand why you explore the L2 chargers with so much fervor.

Apologies for the misinformation.
Thanks for the correction.

Good luck with your purchase decision, take the plunge!
 

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Yeah, I'm an Aussie.
I have little experience of 110V, and I thought I'd gleaned from others here how long it took. Now I understand why you explore the L2 chargers with so much fervor.

Apologies for the misinformation.
Thanks for the correction.

Good luck with your purchase decision, take the plunge!
I can't tell you how many times I've wished we were 220v as well. (Our electric tea kettles SUCK)
 

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I recommend changing the outlet if it is old or worn and also making sure it is a dedicated outlet with cover, (nothing else on it) so it doesn't trip the breaker.
And to verify and ensure that the receptacle is using wiring that's up to the job and attached by screw terminals, not push-in.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks to all who answered. I picked up the car yesterday and am currently charging it for the first time. The display says it would be full charged in about 14 hours so I guess I've got the 8 amp. I'll have to disconnect about 3 hours early but every little bit helps.
 

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The provided 110V charger can do either 8A or 12A.
But when you plug things in and charge the car, 8A is the default.
If your outlets and wiring can handle 12A charging then you can use 12A charging - you do need to change a setting in the car to use 12A charging.
(And I think it resets back to 8A after each charge, so you would have to change it again each time. Check the manual.)


Mitch
 

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The later Gen 1 does set the charging through the charge options page when you hit the leaf button on the dash. Earlier Gen 1's had the selector on the EVSE. For the later models, you have to set 12A every time the car is plugged in when using 120V, but 240V (L2) doesn't require any settings to get the maximum charge rate. Just make sure your socket is properly wired using the lugs and not wires stabbed into the back of the plug and that nothing else is on the line you plan to use for your EVSE, this is especially important if you up the rate to 12A.
 

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Steve you have to change the charge rate everytime you plug in... Press the leaf above engine mode button. On the touch screen go to charging and select level and 12amp mode.
 
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