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Discussion Starter #1
I have a strange intermittent problem with my 2016 Volt. It happens only occasionally but it is definitely a defect. I typically use "Hold" mode on the freeway when driving at 60+ mph. When I come upon bumper to bumper traffic I switch it to "Normal". Sometimes during this transition, instead of going to "Normal" EV mode, it goes into what I call 100% ICE mode (the defect mode). The engine continually runs no matter what (as evidenced by what I can hear and feel and what I see on the "Powerflow" screen). I can use the mode button and switch it into different modes but no matter which one is selected, the engine remains running. Even at a complete stop and even when put into park! (and yes my hood is completely shut-for those who might think I left my hood open causing ICE to run) The car runs either on pure ICE power or ICE+battery ONLY, in this mode, there are no other possibilities. The only way I can fix this is to shut off the vehicle and restart it. This clears the problem until the next time it happens.

There is no CEL or codes. I called OnStar and they couldn't see anything unusual as it was happening. I have logged the problem with the Volt Advisor and have an appointment at the dealer next week, I will let you know what the outcome is.

Anyone else have this issue?
 

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Sounds like a bad temperature sensor, unless it happens in negative fourty or positive 120f then it's as designed
 

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Let’s see, you paid extra to buy an electric car, but you prefer to use gas when driving fast... traffic slows down, you switch back to electric... after switching back to Normal and experiencing the 100% ICE mode, which fuel type increases in consumption as you drive, gas or kWh Used, or does neither one change and the distance continues to count as Gas Miles (would indicate running on battery power put there via regen or MM when in Range Extending Mode)? After switching to Normal, do the miles continue to register as Gas Miles, which one would expect if an internal glitch prevents you from returning to Electric Mode, or do they switch to Electric Miles? Type of miles and type of fuel consumption after switching to Normal would likely be helpful info to provide the dealer’s service people. Is it possible your Mode Switch has an intermittent fault, preventing a switch back to Normal?

If your hood were unlatched, there should be a warning message on the driver’s display. Have you tried parking the car when your problem was happening and releasing the hood latch to see if the running engine sounds you are hearing change when the hood is actually open (just in case what you’re hearing is not the ICE, but some other system noise)?
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Let’s see, you paid extra to buy an electric car, but you prefer to use gas when driving fast...
My freeway commutes exceed the AER, and in this case I was on a 200 mile road trip. You seem opposed to my idea of using ICE at 60+ on the freeway...what am I missing here??

which fuel type increases in consumption as you drive
The engine ran the entire time on my return trip and the data on my screen reflected this. The distance was correctly counted as all Gas miles. Yes, I will mention this to the dealer thank you. I have taken pictures of my screens as well as video to show them.


Is it possible your Mode Switch has an intermittent fault, preventing a switch back to Normal?
My Mode switch functions normally. I can select any mode and it will display the mode I selected. The strange malfunction is what the car does with that selection. For example I can select "Sport" mode. It accepts this selection and displays "Sport" at the bottom, yet the engine continues to run and the Powerflow display shows all ICE power or ICE+battery.

If your hood were unlatched, there should be a warning message on the driver’s display. Have you tried parking the car when your problem was happening and releasing the hood latch to see if the running engine sounds you are hearing change when the hood is actually open (just in case what you’re hearing is not the ICE, but some other system noise)?
That's right, my hood was definitely not open, I would have seen the warning on my instrument panel. I kept my car running in this 100% ICE defect mode because I drove straight to the dealer so they could witness this. Unfortunately they were closed. Any ways with the car parked, I got out and the engine was on and hot with the fans running at full blast. I popped open the hood and the compartment was so hot I almost burnt my hand on the prop rod, I had to use a rag to grab it. Like I said, I could definitely hear and feel it the whole time it was running including at complete stops. It never stopped running until I shut the car off. Burned 2.25 Gal of fuel, 85.9 ICE miles at a crappy 38.8MPG due to a lot of stop & go traffic.
 

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My Mode switch functions normally. I can select any mode and it will display the mode I selected. The strange malfunction is what the car does with that selection. For example I can select "Sport" mode. It accepts this selection and displays "Sport" at the bottom, yet the engine continues to run and the Powerflow display shows all ICE power or ICE+battery.
I’ve now and then read postings reporting a faulty Mode switch, so perhaps a change in screen display when you press the switch doesn’t mean the actual switching has taken place. If your problem is intermittent and happens only as you try to switch out of Hold, it’s just a potential source of the problem. Of course, normal operations would also have the ICE come to a stop if the car is not moving (unless needed to generate electricity for a/c, etc.), so that behavior sounds abnormal.

As for my initial comment, you described typically using Hold on the freeway for fast driving, switch to Normal for bumper to bumper. I’ve read so many postings by Volt owners who use Hold on the freeway because the electric motor is "more efficient at slower speeds" that using Hold when driving fast seems to have become a "smart thing to do." In truth, the "efficiency" comes from the rate of fuel consumption, not from the fuel itself. The grid power stored in the battery gets used up faster when driving fast. BEV owners do the entire trip on battery. Hold mode was originally a "City" mode enabling European drivers to save their battery for driving in urban emission-restricted zones where ICE cars have limited or no access.

There’s only so much flexibility in the number of electric miles you can get out of a single battery charge. On any drive beyond full-charge range with no recharging opportunities, you’ll get perhaps 3-5 more electric miles by careful use of Hold instead of staying in Normal, thus reducing trip gas consumption by perhaps one pint. That’s not a significant gas or cost savings. I’m just suggesting you think about why you typically switch to Hold when you do instead of driving your electric car until it uses up the grid power fuel and starts generating its own. Choosing to use Hold should be a personal, not an economic decision (e.g., "I like to save my battery power for driving on residential streets"). That also works for the end of the trip. Sure, if you forget to switch to Normal soon enough, you’ll burn a small amount of gas you didn’t "need" to use and arrive home with a bit of charge remaining, but you will arrive home on quiet electric power, and the charge you didn’t use isn’t "wasted" - it gets "rolled over" into the new full charge.
 

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Rehash of random topics that have no bearing on the ops situation
In the ops case there might be a few things going on,
I have "lost" hold mode when I have engaged it with less than 5 miles and then exited the mode.
Normal behavior.

But if he has lots of miles left when it happens he should replicate it, go to a dealer with it running and show them then get a volt advisor involved
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Update:

But if he has lots of miles left when it happens he should replicate it, go to a dealer with it running and show them then get a volt advisor involved
I actually had 38 EV miles range as it was happening. So yes I am going to have to wait until it happens again and hopefully it will be during normal business hours so the dealership will be open!

Update: I should have seen this coming, but the result at the dealer was; "Could not duplicate concern at this time".
I attempted to make it go into this strange Engine On mode but I couldn't (Drove a lot on the freeway switching between modes before my appointment). The problem is that it does it when it feels like it, I can't duplicate it on demand.
Well on the bright side, this is not a big driveability issue especially compared to other posts here. I can always shut the car off and restart it to get rid of the problem. No one else on this forum seems to have this issue. I read some posts of similar issues but unlike them, my car did not throw any codes or messages at all. I will wait until it happens again and take it to the dealer as it is happening. I have also been talking to and started a case with a Volt Advisor, as they have much more interest in listening to and helping me than my dealer does. I will be sending them my videos/pictures that my dealer had no interest in.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Losing Confidence in the Volt Advisor

As I mentioned, I submitted video and pictures to the Volt Advisor. However I found their conclusion to be much less than satisfying.

First off, the Volt Advisors are not set up to receive any type of video file unless it is like 2 seconds long. Because as you know, sending larger files via email usually doesn't work. My largest video was just over 3 min long, 249KB. Volt Advisors are restricted from accessing web sites such as DropBox which are normally the "go-to" solutions and there is no upload area provided by GM that we can upload videos to (even though practically every insurance company around provides an upload site for their customers). So just keep this in mind if you have a bright idea of sending your Volt Advisor a video. Any ways, the only way they were able to finally view my information from my DropBox was using their own personal cell phone!

One of the photos I sent was of the coolant temperature which was 186 degrees F. The Volt Advisor's conclusion was that my engine continued to run due to the engine being too hot. Really? ERDTT, but on the hot end of the scale!?? And 186 is too hot? I'm no engineer but I know that if this was true every Volt on the road would be getting stuck in this continual "engine on" situation and people would be complaining their car won't switch to electric just like me! I drove nearly 100 miles in this condition, so basically they are telling me that the cooling system could not manage itself to get it down to a reasonable temperature thus it got stuck in the permanent "engine on" mode and that is the reason it wouldn't switch to electric mode? I don't think so. I know that no GM engineer would have made such a complete nonsense conclusion. Thus, I am losing confidence in the Volt Advisor system. I read some other posts that said that Volt Advisors are nothing more than customer service representatives for GM. I believe that now. I was hoping for more of a true Volt Specialist team experience, people who have direct communication lines to Volt Engineers. Pipe dream I suppose.

Nevertheless, I have documented my case and that's about all I can do for now.
 

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Don't expect the volt advisors to be engineers. The way they add value is, as far as I can tell, they work behind the scenes to encourage and/or put pressure on your dealer service department to fix your problem right. And they connect the service department to special resources like a Volt engineer. They don't need videos to do that. They will not be diagnosing your car.
 

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186 *F is not hot. That's medium-low end of an engine's operating temperature. 250 is barely getting to be "a bit hot" for an engine. It definitely sounds like you have a goofed up sensor somewhere, but I wouldn't be able to tell you what that sensor would be.
 
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