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I have a 2013 with the engine assisted heating. I have two options: turning the assisted heat on when the outside is cold or very cold.

Which one should I use to maximize efficiency in the Chicagoland area?

Also, when the car is charged they say to keep it plugged in..is that necessary and is it still pulling electricity even though done charging?

Also, people from Chicago can you please share your cost for one full charge form their electrical company? I have Comed.

I know there has been talk about this already just wanted to get a clear cut answer. Thanks
 

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Which one should I use to maximize efficiency in the Chicagoland area?
Keep it in the 'very cold' setting if your planning trips of 30 miles or so. I find that switching to just 'cold' is better if you know your going to be travelling 40 or 50 miles, you end up using engine heat to keep the cabin warm, instead of your stored electrical traction energy.

Also, when the car is charged they say to keep it plugged in..is that necessary and is it still pulling electricity even though done charging?
Yes, this is advised. It will help keep your battery warm and ready for a trip. (and cool in the summer)

I live in Detroit. My bill for the month was ~$50. I think the remote starts and shorter range of the car leads to higher consumption. I used 300-400 kWh to charge my car over 35 days
 

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If your taking longer trips use the cold setting. The engine is good at making heat and will extend your EV range. But if your taking short trips keep it on Very cold. This will keep the engine off down to temperatures of 14F (-10C).

I usually use the "very cold" settings. But on a road trip I will use the cold setting. Also I have unchecked the engine assisted heating while plugged in. This allows me to remote start without using gas.
 

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I have a 2013 with the engine assisted heating. I have two options: turning the assisted heat on when the outside is cold or very cold.
Which one should I use to maximize efficiency in the Chicagoland area?
Also, when the car is charged they say to keep it plugged in..is that necessary and is it still pulling electricity even though done charging?
Also, people from Chicago can you please share your cost for one full charge form their electrical company? I have Comed.
I know there has been talk about this already just wanted to get a clear cut answer. Thanks
I use rrtp from ComEd. Been very happy. See Chicagoland group thread: http://gm-volt.com/forum/group.php?do=discuss&discussionid=14

Yes, keep it plugged in to keep the battery temp up otherwise it may use some juice when you first get in and drive.

I have a 2011 so my temp is "medium cold" at ~26F. Use COMFORT and lower fan settings. Also you can use the 3 left vents and use the vent climate setting (or vent+floor). Use floor/window as necessary. I'm in chicagoland. See my sig.

BTW, be careful when reviewing cents/kWh as sometimes people talk about electricity alone and other times they add in all the fees. The RRTP site has yesterday and forecasted prices for 24 hrs (wo/fees). I charge at night when the rates are low.
 

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My Daily commute is less than 40 KM (24 miles)
My 2012 has the option of engine assisted heat when cold or very cold.

I have need using the cold option which kicks in the engine at 2 C (35F) which is almost every day in for the last 4 months in Canada.

I am considering changing it to the very cold option since I always return home with more than enough juice.

My question is, will the engine assisted heating when Very Cold option impact my battery life?
 

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My Daily commute is less than 40 KM (24 miles)
My 2012 has the option of engine assisted heat when cold or very cold.

I have need using the cold option which kicks in the engine at 2 C (35F) which is almost every day in for the last 4 months in Canada.

I am considering changing it to the very cold option since I always return home with more than enough juice.

My question is, will the engine assisted heating when Very Cold option impact my battery life?
No impact. Lithium batteries don't degrade in cold (they have less chemical power available, but they don't lose life - all the power will be back when the battery warms up.) For battery life, its only the hot side you need to worry about (and depth of charge/discharge, of course.) GM has very conservative limits on anything that might be an issue.

Actually, ERDTT has nothing to due with the temperature of the battery anyway (it'll trigger even with a warm battery from in a garage if the OAT falls low enough and the *engine* coolant isn't hot - the engine coolant has no connection or heat exchange to the battery coolant.

There's a fair amount of speculation about exactly why GM included it; my belief is that it exists to meet federal requirements for time to defrost windows - and that the two settings on 2013s are there because if you're driving beyond battery range anyway, it's more efficient to use engine heat.
 

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Ahhh!! thanks.
I wished i had asked this question earlier (beginning of winter). i would have saved over 50l of gas.
oh well next winter ... :)
 

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The suggestions so far have been good, but sense you have a 2013 Volt you also have the Hols mode to control when your engine is running.

So depending on how far and how fast you will be traveling use you coldest setting for the Auto engine run and depending on how much you are paying to charge and how far you will be traveling, use the hold mode at the begining or first high speed portiortions of your trips on each charge to maximise the use of the heat energy from the ICE.

Rember gas is usualy more cost effective at producing heat and in the Volt it can produce much more heat that the electric heater.

Use the hold mode for 5 to 10 minutes at the begining of your trip and then when the heat is no longer enough run it at 3 to 5 minute intervals as needed.

Sense I have a 2011 Volt I do not have these options. But the Volt keeps me nice and warm below 27 degrees, even in below zero temps, in the fan only mode.

Like a lot of things with the Volt, it just depends on your particulas situation.
 

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OK. Let me show my ignorance here. I have a 2013 Volt and have no idea what you mean by assisted heating and selecting a "cold" or "very cold" option. This thread sent me to the owner's manual, but I cannot find anything. Would someone please explain what this is all about, why it is important, and how one accesses these features? Thanks.
 

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OK. Let me show my ignorance here. I have a 2013 Volt and have no idea what you mean by assisted heating and selecting a "cold" or "very cold" option. This thread sent me to the owner's manual, but I cannot find anything. Would someone please explain what this is all about, why it is important, and how one accesses these features? Thanks.
This is from page 5-55 of the PDF of the 2013 Owners Manual:

Engine Assisted Heating
If equipped, this feature selects the outside temperature level at which the engine may run to assist heating in Electric Mode. A change in selection will not take affect until after the vehicle is first powered down. The Engine Assisted Heating options are:

. At Cold Outside Temperatures, below approximately 2°C (35°F).
. At Very Cold Outside Temperatures, below approximately −10°C (15°F).

To select the outside temperature level at which the engine may run to assist heating in electric mode:
1. Press the Vehicle Settings menu.
2. Select Climate and Air Quality.
3. Select Engine Assisted Heating.
4. Select the temperature level.
5. Press Back to return to the previous menu.

Engine Assisted Heating (Plugged-In)
If equipped, this feature turns on or off the ability for the engine to run to help heat the vehicle when it is plugged in. A change in setting will not take affect until after the vehicle is first powered down.
The Engine Assisted Heating (Plugged-In) options are:

. On
. Off

To turn the Engine Assisted Heating (Plugged-In) on or off:
1. Press the Vehicle Settings menu.
2. Select Climate and Air Quality.
3. Turn the engine assisted heating (Plugged-In) feature on or off.
4. Press Back to return to the previous menu.
 

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I'm trying an experiment today - today is the day I just exceed my battery range regularly with a regular route. So I changed the 'very cold' to 'cold' this morning. Will compare fuel used to previous days where I drive this path and see what the difference is. Previously I used Hold mode at the beginning of each portion of the drive to warm the cabin. Today I let ERDTT take over. Unfortunately the sun is very strong and it will be above 35 when I leave work. Still an interesting experiment though - which is more efficient, ERDTT or playing with Hold?
 

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I have a 2011 and on do not have all these new features, which ins OK with me. I just want to note that I find that the engine assisted heat is a good idea. In the 2011 it does not come on until you arrive at 26 degrees. I have noted that when it is used in that cold temp that the overall gas/electric efficiency improves, due to the reduction of load on the battery. All I can say is learn to use the feature wisely and the Volt will treat you well.
 

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I use very cold personally, simply because my commute is only 10 miles each way to work.

Just a note, you can't switch it on the fly, at least I can't. If you have the car started with Cold, you can't switch it to Very Cold to get the engine to turn off if it's already running. Need a full restart.
 

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ERDTT vs hold is a big difference.. unless you floor it.. the engine is close to idle at ERDTT and shuts off frequently.. in Hold mode the engine runs Much more.. in ERDTT your battery will still be consumed just not nearly as fast as running the heater without it..
-Christopher
 

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Are they ever going to update my 2011 so I have this option as I will save lots of gas being in Canada?
Doubtful. GM's stated policy is not to update older cars with new features even when we're pretty sure they are software only. This might well involve different hardware, since the 2013 battery is different, with a chemistry that's supposed to be better in the cold.
 

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I use the "Very Cold" setting, Im in Northern VA and have a MY13. If I know im just going a few miles (back and forth to store, or a quick jaunt around town) ill stay in Battery mode. If i'm commuting Ill place the battery on hold for the trip in as the afternoon it gets slightly warmer and can have better efficiency on the way home. Either way I burn 1.2-1.4gal avg per day (cold) and the HOLD allows me to use max comfort level of heat (not watching the battery get sucked down)

In your case, Id do Very Cold setting if the distance is short.
 
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