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Discussion Starter #1
The other day I stopped at Walgreens and when I turned the car off, it told me that it couldn't find the fob. Had to press the start/stop button again to turn the car off. Of course, it wouldn't let me lock the car with the button on the handle or the fob button and I didn't have time to fool with the car app or mess with the key so I just left it unlocked and went inside as I knew I'd only be 5 minutes.

When I came back, I had to put the fob in the center console to start the car so that worked OK. Got home and immediately replaced the fob battery. After replacing the fob battery, I went back outside and pressed lock and unlock on the fob a couple times and got no response from the car. BUT... when I got inside the car and started it up, it started OK and then once I had started it once, the fob buttons (lock/unlock) started working again. Drove it a couple times since and it seems OK.

Is it common for the fob to not work WRT pressing the lock/unlock after a battery replacement until you start the car? That is, is it normal that you have to get in and start the car once after replacing the battery to get the fob to be recognized? I also find it odd that when I tested the old battery, it measured 3.0v with a digital VOM. So I'm not even sure the old battery was dead. Not sure if this is a "normal" experience since the fob worked perfectly with never a sign of a low/dead battery prior to that one time when I stopped the car. And then it just stopped working.

Mike
 

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The other day I stopped at Walgreens and when I turned the car off, it told me that it couldn't find the fob. Had to press the start/stop button again to turn the car off. Of course, it wouldn't let me lock the car with the button on the handle or the fob button and I didn't have time to fool with the car app or mess with the key so I just left it unlocked and went inside as I knew I'd only be 5 minutes.

When I came back, I had to put the fob in the center console to start the car so that worked OK. Got home and immediately replaced the fob battery. After replacing the fob battery, I went back outside and pressed lock and unlock on the fob a couple times and got no response from the car. BUT... when I got inside the car and started it up, it started OK and then once I had started it once, the fob buttons (lock/unlock) started working again. Drove it a couple times since and it seems OK.

Is it common for the fob to not work WRT pressing the lock/unlock after a battery replacement until you start the car? That is, is it normal that you have to get in and start the car once after replacing the battery to get the fob to be recognized? I also find it odd that when I tested the old battery, it measured 3.0v with a digital VOM. So I'm not even sure the old battery was dead. Not sure if this is a "normal" experience since the fob worked perfectly with never a sign of a low/dead battery prior to that one time when I stopped the car. And then it just stopped working.

Mike
I have had that happen once with my 2018. FOB just didn't respond. It wasn't the battery, since my car is only 6 months old. I think it was just a glitch. It has not happened since and I have not changed the batteries.

In my case the car would not respond to any FOB commands so I had to open the car manually using the key, at which point the car freaked out with a theft alarm and on-star called me.
 
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I also find it odd that when I tested the old battery, it measured 3.0v with a digital VOM. So I'm not even sure the old battery was dead.
These lithium cells will often show full voltage even when almost depleted when measured with a DVOM. Once you put any kind of load on the cell the voltage will drop to zero. Test with a proper battery tester that applies a load.
 

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I have had that happen once with my 2018. FOB just didn't respond. It wasn't the battery, since my car is only 6 months old. I think it was just a glitch. It has not happened since and I have not changed the batteries.

In my case the car would not respond to any FOB commands so I had to open the car manually using the key, at which point the car freaked out with a theft alarm and on-star called me.
Did you try with the second fob that came with the car? Same result?
 

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I've had this happen 3 times in the 1.5 years I have owned my 2017.

It always corrects itself once the car shuts off fully (as in you exit and let everything power down)

I think its a bit of radio interference that causes the car to reject the fob, until the module gets reset by the car powering down.
 

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There are many threads here about fob glitches for pretty much all model years. Most solutions involve replacing the fob battery and/or isolating the fob and car so things reset. In more rare cases it is the 12v AGM going too low.

On my ELR, both fobs stopped working at the same time when the car was about 3-yrs-old. The car itself wouldn’t start and multiple tries to even get in or out of the car. I tried the isolation technique (place both fobs in the microwave for 15 minutes) and that made the glitches go away. Next day I replaced the fob batteries for SOP. Been a year and no fob issues since other than one being eaten by the Maytag.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I didn't think to try the second fob since I had a CR2032 ready to go. I did put my VOM on current and measured 160mA on the old battery and immediately switched back to DC and still measured 3.0v so I still think the battery was OK. I think those who proposed interference might be right. I'll just see if it happens again. So far, so good. I do wish there was a slot in the front of the center console to place the fob to start it. I had to remove everything from the center console and remove the rubber liner to see where to put the fob. If you don't put it in the exact spot where it shows underneath that rubber liner, it won't start.

Mike
 

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I've had three or maybe four FOB episodes with our 2017 in the last year and a half.

All were very similar to the OPS original post. The second episode continued for more than one day, replaced the battery (just short of one year of use) and poof problem appeared to go away.

I've had it temporarily occur again since then. Rather than fighting city hall with the FOB to lock the car when I exit the car I press the door's lock button, plug in the car to charge, and go on about my business. Upon return no problem noted.

What I believe may be the problem for me is that since the FOB is always in my pocket, that one of the buttons gets depressed due to physical contact with other items in my pocket. Which results in a temporary dead FOB.

The reason I suspect the above is that last winter I had a similar FOB problem with my wife's Jeep. Jeep only requires pressing the remote start button twice to start the vehicle. Whereas GM requires a lock press followed by a remote start press. End result in my wife's Jeep was that it was running when I came down the stairs to the garage one morning, the FOB was in my front pocket along with a few other items.
 

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new battery is about 3.3 Volts and starting car with FOB in dash slot can still work with high RFI in the area and with a dead FOB battery.

Wrap an extra battery in tape and keep handy - should be good for 5 + years - same battery type used in most computer motherboards if you need one or the other in a hurry
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Did it again yesterday. Stopped at the car wash and pulled around to vacuum after the wash. Upon getting out, got the "remote not detected" message. Shut it down and vacuumed, then when I got back in, couldn't start it due to fob not detected. Put the fob in the correct spot in the center console and it started, and drove about 10 miles to my next stop. Got out, fob still not detected. Had to lock the car with OnStar. Was at that location for about an hour and when I came back out, the doors unlocked and the car started normally. Definitely not the fob battery: brand new Energizer 2032. When I got home, I switched fobs and will use the other fob (with new battery) for a while to see if that helps.

P.S. Also checked all 12v battery terminals both in the back and under the hood: all tight.

Mike
 
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I keep my fob in my pocket (so I don't forget it in car). The other day the when I got in to start it, the dash display said remote battery low, replace or some such. The car started fine and the message didn't come back and has started fine since and locked unlocked doors etc. I haven't got around to getting new battery(s) yet so haven't opened case to measure battery voltage but will next visit into town. Has any one else received a 'low RMK battery" message on their display? I can't recall any one mentioning it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I keep my fob in my pocket (so I don't forget it in car). The other day the when I got in to start it, the dash display said remote battery low, replace or some such. The car started fine and the message didn't come back and has started fine since and locked unlocked doors etc. I haven't got around to getting new battery(s) yet so haven't opened case to measure battery voltage but will next visit into town. Has any one else received a 'low RMK battery" message on their display? I can't recall any one mentioning it.
I've seen it mentioned. That's just time to get a new battery. When the battery first gets low, it's borderline so the message can come and go on the display: based on temperature, battery condition, whether or not the buttons on the remote were used recently, etc.

Mike
 

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It could have been caused by RF signal interference at the car wash coming from lighting systems, etc. Next time you use the car wash try a different self-service bay. If it happens again other than at the same car wash location then suspect the key fob or the car has an issue since you have already changed the key fob battery.
 

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I keep my fob in my pocket (so I don't forget it in car). The other day the when I got in to start it, the dash display said remote battery low, replace or some such. The car started fine and the message didn't come back and has started fine since and locked unlocked doors etc. I haven't got around to getting new battery(s) yet so haven't opened case to measure battery voltage but will next visit into town. Has any one else received a 'low RMK battery" message on their display? I can't recall any one mentioning it.
I get that message about every two years, when the battery in the fob gets low. I change the battery, and press a button, and the message goes away. (NB: remote only reports battery level to car when a button is pushed: passive functions don't set or clear the message.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
It could have been caused by RF signal interference at the car wash coming from lighting systems, etc. Next time you use the car wash try a different self-service bay. If it happens again other than at the same car wash location then suspect the key fob or the car has an issue since you have already changed the key fob battery.
Thanks, I'll keep an eye out for it. Today another weird event happened. I unlocked the car with the button on the door handle as usual and when I got inside, I heard a mechanical buzzing: sounded like a relay switching on/off at a high rate of speed. Went away after maybe 8 seconds. No messages or MIL and the car started normally. I'm starting to think something might be starting to go. Might be time for a dealer visit but I suspect everything will work when I'm there and they can't find it.

Mike
 

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I found out the hard way, that if I put my phone in the same pocket with my fob, the fob becomes completely invisible to the car.
 

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Thanks, I'll keep an eye out for it. Today another weird event happened. I unlocked the car with the button on the door handle as usual and when I got inside, I heard a mechanical buzzing: sounded like a relay switching on/off at a high rate of speed. Went away after maybe 8 seconds. No messages or MIL and the car started normally.
The description sounds like what I associate (possibly wrongly) with the fuel tank pressure pump. It's faint on mine, but I hear it run about one time in six, if I don't immediately start the car after getting in.

The Volt's an active little thing just sitting there, all the way from the relay click when it first notices a keyfob in the area to the sighing of the pumps cooling off the battery after a thirsty charge session.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I found out the hard way, that if I put my phone in the same pocket with my fob, the fob becomes completely invisible to the car.
Thanks for mentioning that. I realized that since I keep the fob in my front left pocket and my phone in my back left pocket, when I sit in the seat, the fob slides to the outside of the pocket and almost touches my phone. I also realized that the glithces started happening soon after I activated NFC on my phone (started to use my phone for payments). I switched the fob to my front right pocket and so far after about a half dozen drives, no glitches yet. Maybe that was it?

Mike
 

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I get that message about every two years, when the battery in the fob gets low. I change the battery, and press a button, and the message goes away. (NB: remote only reports battery level to car when a button is pushed: passive functions don't set or clear the message.
I'm glad you mentioned that. When home, I never lock the VOLT so I would never know the battery was low. I'll have to change my methods so I can monitor that batt.
 
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