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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited by Moderator)
Hello!

I'm a relatively recent Volt owner, having purchased my 2014 as a Certified Pre-Owned at the end of July in 2017. It currently has about 64,800 (~15,000 are mine, nearly half electric half gas) miles on it, and is recently out of the CPO 1 year warranty. I was previously a pretty happy owner/driver of a 2000 Honda Insight, but the battery died and here in CA that means I can no longer pass smog, so I decided to "upgrade" to something with better mileage, a back seat, and A/C :)

On 8/11/18 I brought the car into the local dealership to receive its first maintenance (oil change / tire rotation) under the CPO qty. 2 freebies.

On 8/15/18 I was driving home on the freeway at 70mph on cruise and gas generator, and without any precipitating event that I can recall I got some chimes and a notice on the dash stating "Engine Not Available..." and "Propulsion Power is Reduced". I continued on under electric (I had exhausted my normal battery range on the way to work that morning) to the next exit and got off the freeway. I nursed it along as far as I could, but about 1 mile from my house the car didn't have anything more to give, and I coasted into a restaurant parking lot.

I then called OnStar trying to figure out how to proceed. After describing the event they worked to get me a tow arranged, and asked if I could shift into Neutral. To do so I pressed the power button first, and the engine started but ran as rough as I've ever heard a four stroke run, as if it was missing on multiple cylinders. I shut it down as soon as I could and waited for the tow truck to arrive.

When the tow truck arrived at about 9pm (after the closest dealership was closed) I had to try to get it into neutral again, so I pressed the power button for the second time after this ordeal began. This time it seemed to run more smoothly, but alarmingly a large cloud of bluish-white acrid smoke came out of the tailpipe for as long as we had it running. The truck driver got it on the flatbed and towed it to my garage.

To get it off the flatbed we had to start it once more, and the bluish-white smoke came back again, this time filling my garage to the point where I told my kid to stay outside so he wouldn't be breathing this stuff. I got it onto the charger and left it for the morning. I was able to get an early morning appt. at the local dealer and drove it over under "Reduced Propulsion Power" electric mode and told them of this saga. They set about to diagnose and came back with a quote within a few hours...

...For a coolant hose leak at the "High Voltage Battery Cooling Plate", to the tune of $770 out of pocket (~5$ for the hose, $26 for replacement coolant, and $740 labor). I've been trying to get the dealership and GM to answer how this would have resulted in my engine shutting down at freeway speeds ever since, with no good answers. They claim not to be able to duplicate the problem, even though we couldn't get the engine started when I drove it over, and I had a picture of my dash showing "Engine Not Available". I did finally get them to give me a readout of codes from my car, though the run they provided from a MDI 2 using GDS 2 software doesn't have my VIN on it and was performed on 9/1/18. Codes are:

B018A 02 Not Current
P1FFD 00 Failed This Ignition Cycle
P1FFF 00 Failed This Ignition Cycle
P1E00 00 Not Run This Ignition Cycle, Last Test Failed Current DTC

I'm recently out of the CPO warranty but still under Powertrain and Voltec, so I'm wary of throwing good money after bad, but I've also been out of pocket in a rental for a couple weeks now. I talked with the Service Advisor, Customer Experience Manager, Service Manager, and now the Shop Foreman. I've also had a case opened with GM since a couple hours after I was provided the quote, but got quite the runaround there without any relief other than to work with the dealership because "they know the vehicle best".

I can't understand how fixing a coolant leak in the battery cooling loop would affect my engine's ability to provide power at freeway speeds, and none of this explains the very rough running and noxious thick smoke I experienced after the engine quit the first time. I don't understand how these events wouldn't throw codes that would be stored, as OBD-II is about capturing emissions behavior as much as anything. I'm hoping there's some technical minds here that know the car and might be able to help me in figuring out the best and least expensive way to proceed from here.

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide. I'm kinda at my wits end on this issue.

Regards,

sean
IMG_2261.jpg
 

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1. get the onstar code soon.

2. Do you have the WOT battery tank sensor override plug installed ?

3. What did the tanks fluid levels look like on all 3 tanks before that added coolent after the repair.


You being able to charge the Volt at all is interesting giving the codes you seemed to have if there was a battery coolent leak.

Did this look like road damage ie other have had a rock hit the raidator ?
 

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Hello!

I'm a relatively recent Volt owner, having purchased my 2014 as a Certified Pre-Owned at the end of July in 2017. It currently has about 64,800 (~15,000 are mine, nearly half electric half gas) miles on it, and is recently out of the CPO 1 year warranty. I was previously a pretty happy owner/driver of a 2000 Honda Insight, but the battery died and here in CA that means I can no longer pass smog, so I decided to "upgrade" to something with better mileage, a back seat, and A/C :)

On 8/11/18 I brought the car into the local dealership to receive its first maintenance (oil change / tire rotation) under the CPO qty. 2 freebies.

On 8/15/18 I was driving home on the freeway at 70mph on cruise and gas generator, and without any precipitating event that I can recall I got some chimes and a notice on the dash stating "Engine Not Available..." and "Propulsion Power is Reduced". I continued on under electric (I had exhausted my normal battery range on the way to work that morning) to the next exit and got off the freeway. I nursed it along as far as I could, but about 1 mile from my house the car didn't have anything more to give, and I coasted into a restaurant parking lot.

I then called OnStar trying to figure out how to proceed. After describing the event they worked to get me a tow arranged, and asked if I could shift into Neutral. To do so I pressed the power button first, and the engine started but ran as rough as I've ever heard a four stroke run, as if it was missing on multiple cylinders. I shut it down as soon as I could and waited for the tow truck to arrive.

When the tow truck arrived at about 9pm (after the closest dealership was closed) I had to try to get it into neutral again, so I pressed the power button for the second time after this ordeal began. This time it seemed to run more smoothly, but alarmingly a large cloud of bluish-white acrid smoke came out of the tailpipe for as long as we had it running. The truck driver got it on the flatbed and towed it to my garage.

To get it off the flatbed we had to start it once more, and the bluish-white smoke came back again, this time filling my garage to the point where I told my kid to stay outside so he wouldn't be breathing this stuff. I got it onto the charger and left it for the morning. I was able to get an early morning appt. at the local dealer and drove it over under "Reduced Propulsion Power" electric mode and told them of this saga. They set about to diagnose and came back with a quote within a few hours...

...For a coolant hose leak at the "High Voltage Battery Cooling Plate", to the tune of $770 out of pocket (~5$ for the hose, $26 for replacement coolant, and $740 labor). I've been trying to get the dealership and GM to answer how this would have resulted in my engine shutting down at freeway speeds ever since, with no good answers. They claim not to be able to duplicate the problem, even though we couldn't get the engine started when I drove it over, and I had a picture of my dash showing "Engine Not Available". I did finally get them to give me a readout of codes from my car, though the run they provided from a MDI 2 using GDS 2 software doesn't have my VIN on it and was performed on 9/1/18. Codes are:

B018A 02 Not Current
P1FFD 00 Failed This Ignition Cycle
P1FFF 00 Failed This Ignition Cycle
P1E00 00 Not Run This Ignition Cycle, Last Test Failed Current DTC

I'm recently out of the CPO warranty but still under Powertrain and Voltec, so I'm wary of throwing good money after bad, but I've also been out of pocket in a rental for a couple weeks now. I talked with the Service Advisor, Customer Experience Manager, Service Manager, and now the Shop Foreman. I've also had a case opened with GM since a couple hours after I was provided the quote, but got quite the runaround there without any relief other than to work with the dealership because "they know the vehicle best".

I can't understand how fixing a coolant leak in the battery cooling loop would affect my engine's ability to provide power at freeway speeds, and none of this explains the very rough running and noxious thick smoke I experienced after the engine quit the first time. I don't understand how these events wouldn't throw codes that would be stored, as OBD-II is about capturing emissions behavior as much as anything. I'm hoping there's some technical minds here that know the car and might be able to help me in figuring out the best and least expensive way to proceed from here.

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide. I'm kinda at my wits end on this issue.

Regards,

sean
View attachment 155409
From what I can see in the picture you are totally out of gasoline as well as out of battery charge and then used up your small reserve. The engine is not available when it doesn't have gasoline to run on. If your 12 volt battery is also low it can cause misfiring due to low voltage and cause the smoke from unburned fuel. The electric fuel pump will run on recharging the fuel rail pressure even after running out of fuel to run the car down the road, so it might fire up as you have described after it has lost propulsion.
As far as the coolant leak is concerned it was probably a very slow leak that finally got low enough to cause trouble, but needed to be taken care of. It couldn't have been extremely low or you wouldn't have been able to charge the propulsion battery. Also when you charged the propulsion battery you were also charging the 12 volt which could have been causing some of the problems such as the throwing odd codes.
 

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From what I can see in the picture you are totally out of gasoline as well as out of battery charge and then used up your small reserve. The engine is not available when it doesn't have gasoline to run on.
There's clearly two bars of gas left. At least a gallon, probably 1.5. LOW kicks on around then.

If your 12 volt battery is also low it can cause misfiring due to low voltage and cause the smoke from unburned fuel. The electric fuel pump will run on recharging the fuel rail pressure even after running out of fuel to run the car down the road, so it might fire up as you have described after it has lost propulsion.
The 12v battery has nothing to do with spark-based misfiring. The Volt starts by having the Motor/Generator A spin the engine at 1400 RPM, and the APM (which gets its power from the high voltage pack and converts it down to whatever the low-voltage bus needs) supplies power for the ignition system. Once the engine's up to temperature, MGA becomes a generator, making high-voltage power.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
1) Not sure what this means.
2) No mods to the vehicle, exactly as I purchased it as a CPO.
3) Unknown. I've been pretty hands off on this car, working on the assumption that it's smart enough to tell me when there's an issue. Not my usual style, but it's been busy at work and home and I wanted it to be more of an appliance this time around. What I can say is the same dealership signed off on a 27 point inspection during the oil change 4 days prior, so I sure hope the fluid levels were topped off.
4) The dealership has not provided pictures or thus far let me see the area of hose damage. They told me that it did not appear to be road damage, simply a faulty hose. I'm of the opinion that if a consumable like a hose is buried far enough that a replacement will cost $770, that's a design flaw.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
There was probably ~50mi of range left in gas, and I was planning on charging overnight to get me to work (~30mi) on electric the next morning and fill up at a station there before the drive home the next day. That's how I've been using this car since I got it a year ago.

I know the scent of unburned fuel and this smoke was not that. Something other than fuel was being burned when that event occurred, twice.
 
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