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Hi,

I have a 2012 Chevrolet Volt with just over 100k miles on it. Last time I drove the vehicle, I got the "Service High Voltage" light on the dash. I continued to drive it on gas only for a few hundred miles, but then I was hit with the "Proposuion Reduced" message that made it undrivable. I had it towed to a dealership, and they're reporting that the battery module is dead, and my batteries are "short-circuited". I'm not sure what that means exactly. The new battery module is $1400 installed (~$900 for the part) and the batteries are $11,000 + installation. Clearly the car isn't valued at this amount, so I'm unsure of where to go from here.

I was just hoping to get some input, the batteries were fine the last time I drove it, so I'm not sure what could have happened.

Right now I have a dead Volt with no-value. They're asking if I want to try replacing just the battery module, on the hope that I can at least get it drivable enough to trade it in?

Any input is appreciated - thanks, everyone!:mad:
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Hi,

I have a 2012 Chevrolet Volt with just over 100k miles on it. Last time I drove the vehicle, I got the "Service High Voltage" light on the dash. I continued to drive it on gas only for a few hundred miles, but then I was hit with the "Proposuion Reduced" message that made it undrivable. I had it towed to a dealership, and they're reporting that the battery module is dead, and my batteries are "short-circuited". I'm not sure what that means exactly. The new battery module is $1400 installed (~$900 for the part) and the batteries are $11,000 + installation. Clearly the car isn't valued at this amount, so I'm unsure of where to go from here.

I was just hoping to get some input, the batteries were fine the last time I drove it, so I'm not sure what could have happened.

Right now I have a dead Volt with no-value. They're asking if I want to try replacing just the battery module, on the hope that I can at least get it drivable enough to trade it in?

Any input is appreciated - thanks, everyone!:mad:
I also wanted to add that previous to being taken to the dealer, I drove it about 10 miles on just the battery before the Propolsion Reduced light came on. It seemed to shut off anytime the 12V battery was disconnceted/reconnected. It'd drive fine for the period of time without the message, but still couldn't charge.

Thanks again!
 

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I'm not sure what part they're referring to in "battery module"? The Volt has three battery sections (or modules) so perhaps they're talking about replacing just one of three sections, although the price quoted seems low for this compared to a total replacement. If only one section was bad, and the replacement battery is new I'd go ahead for this price.

Once a battery is internally shorted, which can happen due to normal degradation, it has to be replaced.
 

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Battery packs can be found at salvage yards for $2k or less. DIY install. But as posted above it's not clear what exactly they think is wrong and need replaced.
 

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I'm not sure what part they're referring to in "battery module"? The Volt has three battery sections (or modules) so perhaps they're talking about replacing just one of three sections, although the price quoted seems low for this compared to a total replacement. If only one section was bad, and the replacement battery is new I'd go ahead for this price.

Once a battery is internally shorted, which can happen due to normal degradation, it has to be replaced.
Can the car still operate at a reduced capacity, on the remaining batteries? The tech said that the only thing they can do is plug the car into the machine, and it says "replace batteries", they don't have any additional information. The car did drive for about 10 miles before I took it in, on battery powered. At this point, I'm just looking to get it into good enough shape to get it down the road.

Battery packs can be found at salvage yards for $2k or less. DIY install. But as posted above it's not clear what exactly they think is wrong and need replaced.
They didn't provide me with any other information, only that it's a battery control module. I do know that the battery has to be removed to access it, but that's it. They have referred to it as a system module, and needing to be programmed. Unfortunately, I don't have the garage or time to do a DIY solution so it'll come down to either having them replace the module and hoping the remaining batteries get it down the road or dumping it as-is.
 

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Sorry about this failure, and I hope a forum member can give you a better solution. This situation is making me realize that once my Voltec warranty expires, I should decide what my next car purchase will be in case I am suddenly in the same situation.
 

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This seems crazy to me!!
"batteries are $11,000 + installation"
I thought a battery was < $4000 by itself?

I just found this 2018 thread:
https://gm-volt.com/forum/showthread.php?311162-Replacement-Battery-Price
Today a friend told me the reason he's not keen on buying a Volt is the replacement cost of the battery pack.

I 'thought' I read that to replace the battery is about $3k, but he said it's $3K per cell (or unit?) and there are
four cells that need to be replaced for a total cost of about $12K

Is this correct? Does anybody have experience with replacement costs?
And this related article:
Title: Chevy Volt replacement battery cost varies wildly
https://www.autoblog.com/2014/01/10/chevy-volt-battery-replacement-cost-34000/
______________________________

Sorry about this failure, and I hope a forum member can give you a better solution. This situation is making me realize that once my Voltec warranty expires, I should decide what my next car purchase will be in case I am suddenly in the same situation.
Boy there is some truth to that. I've had 1 section of my '11 Volt battery replaced under warranty so far. We are seeing some pretty expensive problems after the warranty (and even dealers balking at genuine Voltec warranty work they don't want to cover but want you to pay).

Non-CA warranty --- I think CAs is 150,000 miles.
8-YEAR/100,000-MILE BATTERY LIMITED WARRANTY Volt battery and Voltec components are covered for 8 years/100,000 miles (whichever comes first). The Volt battery warranty covers 161 battery components in addition to the thermal management system, charging system and electric drive components.

_______________________________________

Picture below via:
https://www.gmpartsonline.net/auto-...gas-engine/hybrid-components-cat/battery-scat


 

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Can the car still operate at a reduced capacity, on the remaining batteries? The tech said that the only thing they can do is plug the car into the machine, and it says "replace batteries", they don't have any additional information. The car did drive for about 10 miles before I took it in, on battery powered. At this point, I'm just looking to get it into good enough shape to get it down the road.
I believe the 3 battery modules run in series (If I'm wrong someone will correct me.), so one module out of commission would affect the total voltage in a big way. Therefore it would be "no".



They didn't provide me with any other information, only that it's a battery control module.
The BCM is different from the battery itself.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I believe the 3 battery modules run in series (If I'm wrong someone will correct me.), so one module out of commission would affect the total voltage in a big way. Therefore it would be "no".




The BCM is different from the battery itself.


Thanks for the info - It is definitely both, according to them. The module and a shorted out battery.
 

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Scott,

The difference between the prices we see on GMPartsDirect, other than markup, could be due to this being a refurbished verses new part. There's no denying we've seen some reports of large amounts reported here just to replace 1 battery section.
 

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GM or some other creative third-party needs to offer a "battery only" warranty/insurance for out-of-warranty VOLTS and other EVs. Unlike the warranties with the pure ICE vehicles, spending a few dollars per year (I don't know, $300?) might be worth it given how shockingly high some of these battery replacement costs are right now. It's not like you can get this done at just your local repair shop, either. At least not yet...
 

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I wouldn't be so sure these clowns even have this one right.
At $15k you need a new dealer fast.
But I am going to go with this idea that there is something wrong with the battery itself and not some cable or electronic component for a minute and discuss that because I think it is a topic that would be interesting on its own.

The Volt battery pack on my car for example is,
"consists of 288 individual cells arranged into nine modules. Plastic frames hold pairs of lithium-ion cells that sandwich an aluminum cooling fin."
First off, it will be a single cell that is most likely bad in the battery pack, not the entire pack.
So here are some choices to repair a bad battery pack due to a bad cell
  1. Replace the entire pack
  2. Replace a battery module with all it's cells
  3. Replace the bad cell only

There are aftermarket used Chevy Volt battery packs and modules out there.
Just looked on ebay, and one modules (a group of cells) was listing for around $400

He said the cost of manufacturing EV battery cells would fall below $100 per kWh by 2020 and would be less than $50 per kWh by 2025 according to Driving, a Canadian automotive news site.
https://cleantechnica.com/2018/12/0...ry-cell-costs-will-fall-below-50-kwh-by-2025/

In the future, lets just say, that with mark up I could get the new batteries for $75 / kwhr
In future, new batteries sized to replace my entire pack in my volt will cost,
16.5 kwhr * $75 = $1237.50

An enterprising person could refab the modules using aftermarket parts, by swapping out the bad cell or cells only.
Or completely newly rebuilt packs, using new cells.
This sounds like a business opportunity for someone ....
 

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Hi,
I got the "Service High Voltage" light on the dash.
Big red flag warning...

I continued to drive it on gas only for a few hundred miles, but then I was hit with the "Proposuion Reduced" message that made it undrivable.
well you can't say that you weren't warned...

I had it towed to a dealership, and they're reporting that the battery module is dead, and my batteries are "short-circuited". I'm not sure what that means exactly.
What exactly it means: after ignoring the warning you got, the electronics running the battery fried and without properly working electronics you fried the battery too!

the batteries were fine the last time I drove it, so I'm not sure what could have happened.
No. Actually you got a message saying just the opposite.

I also wanted to add that previous to being taken to the dealer, I drove it about 10 miles on just the battery before the Propolsion Reduced light came on. It seemed to shut off anytime the 12V battery was disconnceted/reconnected. It'd drive fine for the period of time without the message, but still couldn't charge.
So... you literally drove the batteries down to failure by resetting the system monitors by cycling the 12V power. Can we change the title of this thread to "What not to do with your electric vehicle"? I'm sure you have a "woe is me" attitude and GM F-ed you, but the reality is that you turned what was probably a minor repair into a major repair.

Proof that no amount of engineering can beat the creative processes of the human mind.

Good luck!
 

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Big red flag warning...
Proof that no amount of engineering can beat the creative processes of the human mind.
Good luck!
Little comfort to the OP I am sure. It's unlikely the entire battery pack is fried. It might be one of the sections that took the brunt of the damage. I would advise the dealer to replace the BCM and while the battery pack is down (needs to be pulled to replace the BCM), test the modules to see which one is bad and replace the affected one.
 

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Anytime I hear or read, "...I continued to drive..." after ANY "Service Engine" light comes on, I figure all bets are off. I agree with wrillo: possible minor issue magnified by operator error.
I hope I'm wrong, for the OP's sake, but seriously: warnings need to be respected.
 

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Anytime I hear or read, "...I continued to drive..." after ANY "Service Engine" light comes on, I figure all bets are off. I agree with wrillo: possible minor issue magnified by operator error.
I hope I'm wrong, for the OP's sake, but seriously: warnings need to be respected.
Once in a while you don't have a choice though.
 

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Hi,

I have a 2012 Chevrolet Volt with just over 100k miles on it. Last time I drove the vehicle, I got the "Service High Voltage" light on the dash. I continued to drive it on gas only for a few hundred miles, but then I was hit with the "Proposuion Reduced" message that made it undrivable. I had it towed to a dealership, and they're reporting that the battery module is dead, and my batteries are "short-circuited". I'm not sure what that means exactly. The new battery module is $1400 installed (~$900 for the part) and the batteries are $11,000 + installation. Clearly the car isn't valued at this amount, so I'm unsure of where to go from here.

I was just hoping to get some input, the batteries were fine the last time I drove it, so I'm not sure what could have happened.

Right now I have a dead Volt with no-value. They're asking if I want to try replacing just the battery module, on the hope that I can at least get it drivable enough to trade it in?

Any input is appreciated - thanks, everyone!:mad:
Hi, The technician should be able to know exactly what the problem is with the Voltec battery pack. There are many parts to the battery pack so it's possible that only one component failed and may not be that expensive to fix. The trick is to find a dealer with a technician that knows what they're doing. Since the Voltec power train has been pretty reliable, not a lot of techs have the experience of working on the battery packs. Check out the below video on a tear down of a 2018 battery pack, similar to a gen 1 pack, the instructor points out some of the differences.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eWYtq0hxhQg

Hope this helps. Good luck!
 

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Along those lines, if my battery pack was worth $15,000 I'd lift the car myself and remove and sell the thing. I hope you got a better offer from somewhere else.
 

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If the battery module (ECU) is dead, then how do they know that the battery itself is also shorted?
Good question, if the battery energy control module is faulty which monitors the battery, then the only way to test the battery would be by dropping and manually testing it.

However, what needs to be replaced isn't fully clear.
 
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