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Hi,
So I got a new 2017 Volt, today was my first real trip that needed to really use the ICE. Anyways, I when the ICE kicked on I watched the coolant temperature get to 185-190'F (what I would think is a normal coolant temp).

As it was my first time with significant ICE miles, I decided to pop it into mountain mode to see if you can recharge that way, and I noticed the coolant temp would shoot up to 215-220 and then drop back down to 185. To me 215 seems really hot for a car, my old car had a needle for coolant temp and it shot straight to the target temp (190) and never moved. When I took it out of mountain mode it dropped right back to 190, and when I parked it at my house and idled the ICE it went back to 217.

Anyways, I got no lights, scanned for codes, nothing. So maybe that's a normal range? I checked the radiator fan when I got home and it was running. But it's not a particularly hot day (70-75), and it seemed odd, that even at highway speeds the coolant would pass 215'F.

So is this something I should be worried about? Or are these totally normal numbers?
 

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Hi,
So I got a new 2017 Volt, today was my first real trip that needed to really use the ICE. Anyways, I when the ICE kicked on I watched the coolant temperature get to 185-190'F (what I would think is a normal coolant temp).

As it was my first time with significant ICE miles, I decided to pop it into mountain mode to see if you can recharge that way, and I noticed the coolant temp would shoot up to 215-220 and then drop back down to 185. To me 215 seems really hot for a car, my old car had a needle for coolant temp and it shot straight to the target temp (190) and never moved. When I took it out of mountain mode it dropped right back to 190, and when I parked it at my house and idled the ICE it went back to 217.

Anyways, I got no lights, scanned for codes, nothing. So maybe that's a normal range? I checked the radiator fan when I got home and it was running. But it's not a particularly hot day (70-75), and it seemed odd, that even at highway speeds the coolant would pass 215'F.

So is this something I should be worried about? Or are these totally normal numbers?
What was the state of charge when you turned on Mountain Mode?
 

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I'm sorry that I can't intelligently address the temps you experienced. Others here probably will do so. I won't suggest that your using MM caused the changes in temperature. Although, I would guess that temp changes would be related to the stoichiometry of the burn process, perhaps running too lean for some reason. Please research this site for information on MM, its uses, what it does and why it does not fully recharge the battery. One reason is that it would cost you too much money using gasoline as opposed to the electrons from the grid. Enjoy your new Volt! ....and Welcome to the Forum.
 

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Those are normal temperatures, both in the range and the rapid variations. Modern engine control units (ECU) will manage the coolant temperature for efficiency and engine protection. To prevent people from flooding dealerships with spurious engine temperature complaints, many car manufactures, including GM, will control the coolant temperature needle so it doesn't move as long as the actual engine temperature stays within the desired range.

With a digital readout you can even get a feel on how hard the ICE is working. Higher temperatures are lower load and less power output. Lower temperatures represent more load and power output. This is opposite of what you would expect until you take into account the purpose of the coolant - to protect the engine from overheating. By keeping the coolant at a lower temperature when the ICE is working hard the ECU can protect the engine from overheating. When the engine is under light load the ECU allows the coolant, and thus the engine temperature to rise, which provides for more efficient fuel burn.
 

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The car will let you know if it's getting out of bounds. Most modern engines are running higher temps for emissions and economy. Some of the new Dodge products have dual thermostats, a low temp and a high temp. Low temp is 185, high temp opens at 210. I'd say without a light on it's in bounds.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Some of the new Dodge products have dual thermostats, a low temp and a high temp. Low temp is 185, high temp opens at 210. I'd say without a light on it's in bounds.
Ahh, that makes sense, if feels like it has two spots, 185 and 215, so that's probably why.

As for the others, I put it in MM mode, the engine definitely was running at higher load (charging the battery while accelerating). I was wondering if you can charge it in mountain, then switch to normal to get more EV driving with the engine off (and how does that affect efficiency, I wonder if the extra miles with the engine off compensates for the lower MPG in MM). Anyways, it does charge it two bars, but won't show me in EV mode after that (though it did stop using the engine).

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
 

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Check your coolant levels and make sure they are full, air bubbles in the system could cause a temperature spike as well, but maybe that is normal to jump to 215F. I like to run mountain mode in winter when I can to get the car nice and hot inside.

I ran one test using mountain mode and using normal charge sustaining mode during summer and got 40 mpg either way, medium speed town. I dont think it makes much difference. As long as you drive off the miles generated in mountain mode.

PS, I have gen 1, but imagine gen 2 is similar.
 

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I agree that the Volt does seem to run a little hotter than older engines but they're actually designed to run hotter. An engine is actually more efficient at hotter temps. I believe the Volt engine can run up to about 240 without any warning, but I recall a post that seemed to indicate a temp warning message at about the 245 mark. The use of MM could have triggered the higher temps because the engine was running at higher RPM with a load from the generator to build the SOC in the battery.

You can charge with MM to get additional charge in the battery but your electric/gas miles will only be displayed as gas miles because those "electric" miles were the result of the engine powering the generator to make that energy rather than from an EVSE. I do however believe those miles will be recorded as EV miles according to Voltstats.
 

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OP, I wouldn't worry about it too much. Like others have said, the Volt should let you know when it's too hot. For reference, on 70F to as high as 90F (rare for the NW), I've rarely seen my temps go above 220. They typically average around 190F to 210F when I'm on ICE on freeway and city driving with fairly hilly terrain.
 

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Volt gives too much information. Everything is computer-controlled and won't exceed specs unless there is a mechanical failure. If there is a failure, a code will be set.

Displaying engine coolant temp obviously confuses some owners. Heck, displaying fuel and electricity usage is confusing to some.

The car's model name should be TMI!
 

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My last trip the coolant would get up to 215 or more and then the fans would come on and the temp would drop quickly to under 200. It seems high, but it must be totally normal. It was a cycle that repeated over and over.
 

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A few times our 2016 Volt was at 210 F, I noticed no problems. I believe modern gas engine are more efficient with higher temp levels, which is why car manufactures have cars running hotter than in years past.
 

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Just be happy that you have a temp gauge. Gen1 owners don't get that telemetry. The solution here is to stop looking at your DIC or go get some giant pieces of black electrical tape. Don't worry about this until you get the "engine overheating, propulsion reduced" message on your Driver Information Console
 

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My experience mirrors Edman's, and Quirky's... Last weekend, 130 miles on ICE, traveling about 75mph, it was above 200* more than it was below. But, since I am an avid reader of this forum, I wasn't worried. :)

Still amazed with the amount of good information, and just good discourse there is to be found here.
 

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Volt gives too much information. Everything is computer-controlled and won't exceed specs unless there is a mechanical failure. If there is a failure, a code will be set.

Displaying engine coolant temp obviously confuses some owners. Heck, displaying fuel and electricity usage is confusing to some.

The car's model name should be TMI!
Agreed. We'll know EVs and PHEVs are finally mainstream consumer when they take out all the extra DIC and center stack vehicle performance displays.
 

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Friday I used 61 miles of battery then rest of the trip of 22 miles on the ICE ambient temp was 85 degs F. Coolant temp ran 190s Peaked at 210 back into 190s. Coming back today on ICE peaked at 199 degs with ambient at 73 degs. My speeds were in mid 60s.
I came across the spec that the thermostat is 180 degs which seems low for seeing 210+ degs at times.
 

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Friday I used 61 miles of battery then rest of the trip of 22 miles on the ICE ambient temp was 85 degs F. Coolant temp ran 190s Peaked at 210 back into 190s. Coming back today on ICE peaked at 199 degs with ambient at 73 degs. My speeds were in mid 60s.
I came across the spec that the thermostat is 180 degs which seems low for seeing 210+ degs at times.
Given the engine line, I'd guess the operating temperature range for our ICE engine will be 180 to 220F. The gen 1 engines were happy running from 190 to 230F when mated to a turbocharger in the Cruze.
 

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Gen1 ran typically in 73-83C (163-180F) range, data sampled over 10 000km this summer.
Rarely exceeded that, highest data point I have is 94C (201F)

So gen2 is likely different than gen1 in that respect.
Or perhaps you're running the engine hard and then slowing, which lets it creep up in temp.
I was cruising basically the entire way so lots of airflow to keep things in line.
 

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I was pretty consisted is my speed on 95 and 295 from MD into NJ.
Gen 1 is a cast iron block with aluminum head(?), while gen 2 is all aluminum engine which might make a difference. Wow, a 12.5:1 compression ratio and regular octane! I came from an Acura with variable valve timing, 2 different length tuned intake, increased valve opening at higher rpm. What does this engine have for tuning? My last car had a high 11:1 but still used premium.
 

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I was pretty consisted is my speed on 95 and 295 from MD into NJ.
Gen 1 is a cast iron block with aluminum head(?), while gen 2 is all aluminum engine which might make a difference. Wow, a 12.5:1 compression ratio and regular octane! I came from an Acura with variable valve timing, 2 different length tuned intake, increased valve opening at higher rpm. What does this engine have for tuning? My last car had a high 11:1 but still used premium.
Direct injection, for one thing.
 
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