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Discussion Starter #1
Today is Dec 19th. One week ago I had routine preventative service on my 2014 Volt. It has about 35K miles on it.

Today the "Service High Voltage Charging System" light came on at 2PM PST. OnStar says codes are P1E00, P1FFE, P1FFF. I looked under the hood and the Battery Coolant is EXTREMELY LOW.

I called the dealer service and they
a) cannot give me an appointment until after Jan 1 (2 weeks away)
b) MIGHT be able to look at it in two days if I leave it, no promises
c) will not give me a rental because it isn't an appointment

I could not reach a Volt advisor at 2:30PM PST today (Saturday).

Dealer service told me I can safely drive on gas. Is that the case? I am doing this for short trips but have a long road trip planned over Christmas. I am planning to leave the car on Tuesday and hope the Volt tech looks at it.

It doesn't seem right that they can't fix it for two weeks, won't give me a rental, very possibly their service error. I have an extended warranty 5yr/100000 mi.

I love my Volt but I do miss the service I used to get at Subaru.
 

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I looked under the hood and the Battery Coolant is EXTREMELY LOW.
Not sure what extremely low means as far as what you see with your eye vs how much fluid is actually in there (capacity).

Dealer service told me I can safely drive on gas. Is that the case?
That doesn't make much since to me since the battery is still used when running on gas. (ICE mainly runs as generator and battery goes up and down (buffered) AFAIK. What am I missing?
 

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odds are the dealer did NOT touch the cooling fluid - it has been 4 years and I have not needed any ( about 1 inch down in that time)

ALWAYS good to check level when adding windshield fluid and keep a record.

Check under car as well for a leak.
 

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Not sure what extremely low means as far as what you see with your eye vs how much fluid is actually in there (capacity).


That doesn't make much since to me since the battery is still used when running on gas. (ICE mainly runs as generator and battery goes up and down (buffered) AFAIK. What am I missing?
Well, kind of. When the ice is running I would think it can send juice directly to the electric motor to propel the car. The electricity doesn't have to go in and back out the battery to get to the to the traction motor. It wouldn't surprise me that the volt when throwing these codes would protect itself and force ice driving to continue. It's like of like my CTS which once thought its cooling system was failing went into a limo mode to drive you forward but fire and send fuel only to a few cyllinder to keep the engine cool. It's not ideal, and it would be good to get WOT or someone else more in the know to chime in.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Not sure what extremely low means
Too dark to get photo now but it looked almost identical to the photo at the bottom of this thread:

138330-Yikes-Battery-coolant-WAY-low

It won't let me post that as a link. I think the level is meant to be up to the sticker with wrench icon on it. It is showing maybe an inch from the bottom of the reservoir.

That doesn't make much since to me since the battery is still used when running on gas.
That is what I told OnStar person and also the dealer service tech I talked to. Service tech acted like I was a moron. And, I don't know enough about how the ICE and battery interact to really claim I am not one.
 

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Well, stop by the dealership and buy some coolant and add it to the reservoir...note the amount added...so as you can tell the service department when you finally get in...:(

Have you called your Volt Advisor about this service center's "solution" to your problem?
 

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Well, stop by the dealership and buy some coolant and add it to the reservoir...note the amount added...so as you can tell the service department when you finally get in...:(

Have you called your Volt Advisor about this service center's "solution" to your problem?
Agree, then monitor for any leaks. If no leaks develop I suspect you'll be good to go. But would still go ahead with the dealer visit to be safe.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you for all the helpful feedback.

Agree, then monitor for any leaks. If no leaks develop I suspect you'll be good to go. But would still go ahead with the dealer visit to be safe.
That tank does say "should only be serviced by a qualified technician" -- does that apply to topping up the fluids or just servicing? I worry about voiding warranty.

Looks like 2012-2013 Volts had a defect related to this. I bought my 2014 at the end of 2013 and wonder if it is affected..

I never received a call from a dedicated advisor -- I didn't realize there was such a thing actually. The general Volt Advisors were not open Saturday at 3PM PST (?!). I am going to look into getting an advisor!
 

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I want to add a note of caution. The OP is driving with a warning displayed and, apparently, quite a bit (more than a quart?) of coolant missing. I'm not sure the best advice is to "watch for leaks" a "good to go."

One of the coolant reservoirs requires a series of bolts to be removed to get the cap off to add coolant. That's not something the OP can do. I think this car needs dealer attention now to avoid a bigger problem that will disable it.
 

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It's one bolt that holds the bracket on, which is accessible by removing the retainers that hold the radiator support cover on. Some people just bend the bracket up to gain access to the cap. You can top off as mentioned before, but I would still have the dealer check it if the loss of coolant is excessive. Make sure you only use the 50/50 Dexcool mix that is specifically made for GM hybrids, that is available at the dealer.
 

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Thank you for all the helpful feedback.

That tank does say "should only be serviced by a qualified technician" -- does that apply to topping up the fluids or just servicing? I worry about voiding warranty.

Looks like 2012-2013 Volts had a defect related to this. I bought my 2014 at the end of 2013 and wonder if it is affected..

I never received a call from a dedicated advisor -- I didn't realize there was such a thing actually. The general Volt Advisors were not open Saturday at 3PM PST (?!). I am going to look into getting an advisor!
I don't see the OP bending back the guard. OP, do yourself a favor. Ask a dealer to add coolant. Don't be dissuaded.
 

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I don't see the OP bending back the guard. OP, do yourself a favor. Ask a dealer to add coolant. Don't be dissuaded.
I agree - err on the side of caution. This is a problem that many of us have seen, the solution is simple, but it should be done by a dealer to protect both the car and the warranty. It's not so much a defect as an assembly quirk.

I'd be looking for another dealer, though.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
I don't see the OP bending back the guard. OP, do yourself a favor. Ask a dealer to add coolant. Don't be dissuaded.
This OP isn't bending back the guard. Very mechanically handy, but too afraid of voiding warranty! This OP is going to the dealer Tuesday (first day Volt technician present) and politely begging to be seen. They probably WON'T and probably WON'T give me a rental. Even though they should have caught this when I had it in for service a week ago, and even though this is probably is a defect and car is under warranty.

I'll also see if I can get a Volt advisor behind me.

Will report back.

I'd be looking for another dealer, though.
All the dealers around here have bad reviews. This bad one is near my home and where I bought the car. The closest good rated one is 60 min away in the opposite direction of work. Arg. I miss my Subaru dealer. Really this is the biggest downside to my Volt.
 

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Photo of my 2013 Volt. The bracket was not installed at the factory and was stowed in the rear of the car. On our 2012 the bracket was installed.
 

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FWIW when I had this problem, OnStar told me it was safe to drive and I did so for about five days. The ICE ran constantly and I could not charge the battery, but apart from that I was fine.
 

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This OP isn't bending back the guard. Very mechanically handy, but too afraid of voiding warranty! This OP is going to the dealer Tuesday (first day Volt technician present) and politely begging to be seen. They probably WON'T and probably WON'T give me a rental. Even though they should have caught this when I had it in for service a week ago, and even though this is probably is a defect and car is under warranty.

I'll also see if I can get a Volt advisor behind me.

Will report back.



All the dealers around here have bad reviews. This bad one is near my home and where I bought the car. The closest good rated one is 60 min away in the opposite direction of work. Arg. I miss my Subaru dealer. Really this is the biggest downside to my Volt.
Talk to the service manager and/or volt advisor Monday, before bringing it Tuesday. Should have been caught a week ago and they should be able to at minimum top up the fluid without appt.
 

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It's one bolt that holds the bracket on, which is accessible by removing the retainers that hold the radiator support cover on. Some people just bend the bracket up to gain access to the cap. You can top off as mentioned before, but I would still have the dealer check it if the loss of coolant is excessive. Make sure you only use the 50/50 Dexcool mix that is specifically made for GM hybrids, that is available at the dealer.
This is what I do. I have not seen anyone mention that you are suppose to now fill the reserve tank above the mark now. I think there was a bulletin on this that specified the issue.
 

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Almost certainly just a co-incidence with servicing, not something that's touched in the service, but a low level should have been picked up.

When the error flags up, though, it needs to be un-set, doesn't it? Just adding fluid won't do anyway so no point? Not sure if there's some other way to reset it? Does 12V disconnect-reconnect do it?
 

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Don't know if you're in the Bay area or not.
Might try Fremont Chevrolet. Initially FH Dailey gave me the run around when I called since I didn't purchase it there.
(didn't purchase it from Fremont either but seems like they have a very competent Volt crew there).
Dailey said 2 -3 weeks, Fremont got it in the next day for the charge port issue. Even provided a loaner since the part wasn't in stock.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Don't know if you're in the Bay area or not.
Might try Fremont Chevrolet.
Great tip, thank you! I live mid-peninsula and the closest well-reviewed dealer on this side of bay is San Jose. I hadn't thought to check across the bay. I will try them now and in future.
 
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