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Discussion Starter #1
I've had a 2017 Bolt since October 2017, and for the most part I'm thrilled, but lately I've been running into things that have me scratching my head.

First of all, my electric rate is low from 7:30pm - 7:30am. So I input the charging plan there. My wife drives a volt, as well I have hers set to charge starting at 7:30pm, and then since we're both on the same branch circuit, I try to keep the overall amperage low on that line by charging mine for time of departure charging, leaving at 7:00 am. With this, her car charges for the first part of the night and mine charges a while after hers is completed. It worked great at first, I think.

Lately though, I see some oddities with my charging. First of all, the estimated time to charge seems to be based on the 110v @8A charge rate. It'll tell me that my car won't be fully charged for more than a day. I wish the software could be set up with the assumption that you'll be using L2 charging. I charge with a 30A clipper creek. This may be what impacts my charging.

Then, beyond that, there is a charge setting to charge at the "earliest" or latest when it's plugged in. Also there is one to charge immediately if it's under 40%, which I have turned on.

Important to the discussion is that my commute is under 30-40 miles each day, so I'm not really charging all that much on an average day.

What's bothering me is that I'll plug my car in when I get home at 4-5pm and it's been starting to charge immediately. I'm not down to 40% or less, and I'm still set to "off peak only", so it should NOT charge at all until 7:30pm either way. Also, I'm still set to departure based, at the LATEST possible charging. So I can't figure out why at 4pm (i.e. High electric rate time) I'm charging. The only giveaway is that the estimated charge time shows many many hours (like maybe 16 hours of charging) since it estimates that based on 8A.

I tried setting it to "earliest" and it then still charges during the on-peak. I want it to ABSOLUTELY honor the on-peak and off-peak rate table, unless I manually tell it to charge. I'd be ok with it charging if it were under 40%, I guess, but it isn't.

So last night, I plugged it in around 4:30, checked it at maybe 8pm and it had charged some miles already. I figured today I'd start the day full. But no, today I was just over 3/4 charged. It's like the car only charged at the 8A rate all night long. There have been maybe 8 days now in the past 4 months that I've been left with a non-fully-charged car in the a.m., despite the fact I only charge at L2.

It feels like a software issue, to me. But am I the only one who experiences this?

The only other oddity is that yesterday I noticed the car making gurgling noises while charging, that seemed to be coming from under the car, not under the hood. I have no errors, or anything, but I'm not used to hearing the Bolt do much of anything. The Volt on the other hand, I'm used to hearing make some noises as it charges.

I'm in WI, so it could just be the cold, but with this long of an experience with the Bolt, I'd have noticed it by now if it were happening all the time.

Just not sure what to make of all of this.
 

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That all sounds like normal behavior to me assuming you were plugging in using an L1 120V EVSE. Can you rule out something going on with your EVSE by testing with a different EVSE or charging another car with the same EVSE? If it is not the EVSE, then my guess is that your car's charger is not handshaking with the EVSE correctly to get the full charge rate. Maybe a warranty repair.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I would agree except wouldn't an L1 still even wait until 7:30PM, or would it not wait, because the charge time will last longer than the off-peak time?

I actually can try to rule it out by using my wife's EVSE. In the next week she'll be away and I'll be able to use either garage spot. So I'll take hers over and see what happens. The "Charging" light does come on, on my clipper creek, when I plug it in. I couldn't remember if that is going to come on even when it isn't charging, or not, but I was expecting it to only come on when it was actually in that off-peak charging time. So maybe it did handshake and come up with some odd charge level or something with the car. I don't know if an L2 EVSE is capable of charging at 120V or not. If it is, maybe that's exactly what is happening.

If it happened every day, it would be easier to troubleshoot. I think this is day 2 though that I left home without a full charge, which should be an ultra-rare thing given my commute.

Thanks for the reply!
 

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I believe that the car will charge immediately if your delayed charging schedule results in an estimate that the car will not fully charge by your departure time. At least that is how the Volt seems to handle it, and I would expect the Bolt to be similar.
 

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Looking at your signature, I notice that you have multiple Clipper Creek EVSEs that you said are sharing a circuit. I also noticed that Clipper Creek has a feature that will reduce charging power under certain circumstances. Here is a snip from their website describing it:

"Share2® allows charging station owners to install two 32A, Level 2 charging stations on one 40A circuit. The Share2® is an inexpensive solution for any location looking for an easy way to double the number of charge points without running additional 240V circuits. The Share2® enabled HCS-40 will offer full power if one vehicle is requesting a charge and automatically splits the power if a second vehicle requests a charge at the same time. When one of the vehicles completes charging, the other station reverts to full power for the second vehicle."

I don't know if that feature is active on your installation, or exactly how it is implemented, but it seems reasonable that this could be causing your issue.
 

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One other suggestion would be to set your default charge rate to 12A using the home location feature of the car. That alone will not completely solve your issue, but at least it will improve your charge time somewhat when you are not getting full L2 charge power. It might help to set the Volt to 12A also, but in the 2014, that has to be manually set after each drive.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks Barry, great information. I had no idea bout the Share2 feature, nor if it's active or not. I don't know if that affects me or not, since I only have 1 40A charger. My guess is that the 40A (really a 32A charger) may or may not know about the 30A (really a 24A I think?). If I bought a 2nd 40A to replace it, it may actually work pretty cool together. I'll consider that.

I disabled location based charging as part of the troubleshooting, figuring that maybe sometimes it was not knowing I was at home, and using the "charge immediately" setting. But I'll go back in there and see if it lets me set 12A as a default. I don't remember that as an option. If so, you're right, that at least changes the estimate. Otherwise I'll keep manually doing it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Just following up on this after a couple more days. I re-enabled location based charging so that it would follow the charge plan when home and charge immediately when not at home. (Never used any other charging other than my house before, so hardly matters on the immediate).

Interestingly, a couple nights ago, I plugged it in in the late afternoon, and the next day it hadn't charged at all. I think all my recent chargings I've also set it to 12A. Or, if it did charge, it was minimal. My charge info screen said over 100 miles since last full charge, since I've been doing some extra driving each day this week.

But last night, I did the same thing, plugged it in around 6pm, and this a.m. it was charge.

One other oddity is this: In the summer I had been getting 225-245 miles of range when charged. Last year was MUCH colder than this year for us, and even on the sub zero days, I'd see generally 150-155 miles of range as a minimum. Yeah, that's taking a big hit, but I was plenty happy with 150+.

My charging issues have basically been noticed for maybe 3 months or so, and interestingly, despite this winter being warmer than last year, I almost never see more than 135 miles of range when it's cold out fully charged now. It's definitely a noticeable difference to last year. So I'm starting to guess that there is something wrong somewhere in the charging system of the car. I may just have to schedule it with a dealer.

For those who got that letter in the mail a while back about some software update, I never did that. But, had zero charging issues until some time this fall.
Now it's random.
 

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Note that when using location based charging, sometimes the GPS gets "iffy" on confirming the vehicle is at home. If the home location was set while parked in the driveway, the car might not think it is home if you are parked in the garage. If home was set with the car parked in the garage facing forward, it may not think it is at home if the car is backed into the garage. Sometimes the GPS signal is blocked when the car is parked inside a structure, so the car can’t recognize it is at home.

Perhaps this might account for some of the behavior you have observed with your Bolt...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I can see how it would get confused, but, if it did not think I was at home, the default charging is then to "immediate", so I would assume that this would lead to more often charging, rather than not charging.
 

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Have you turned on the hilltop charging mode in the car? If so, that will reduce your full charge range.

One thing I can not get my head around: You said you have a 40 amp EVSE plus a 30 amp EVSE charging 2 cars and sharing the same branch circuit. The cars are a Volt at 16A and a Bolt at 32A, for a total of 48A. What is the amperage rating of the branch circuit? Most are rated at 50A or less, which should carry no more than 40A as a sustained load. How are you ensuring it is not overloaded? I understand you are trying to charge one car early and one car later, but it does not sound like you are able to schedule that with enough precision to ensure they do not overlap.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
No, hilltop mode is off. I found that when I first got it, that my range was more without it.
And since I don't live on a hill, I always drain the battery for a while before it has any chance to regen.

Regarding the circuit. Here's how it is.

There's a 4ga or 6ga feeder to the garage panel, and a 60A breaker there. On the charger there's a 40A breaker.
From that garage panel to another garage there's a circuit with 6ga wire and in that garage there are just regular outlets and lights, plus a 30A breaker for the second charger.

So really, unless I draw over 60A, I'm not worried about overloading the circuit. But, I do run an air compressor, welder, and other things intermittently. (a few times a year) So, I didn't want to have them charge at the same time in general just to not have to worry about blowing a breaker randomly. It shouldn't, and doesn't, blow breakers on me as it is now, even if both cars charge together and I have all the lights on and do small work around the shop.

Now, this week, I'm the only one with a car home to charge, and, since I was having problems with the car not charging overnight on my 30A charger on the far out garage, while the wife is gone, I have been parking in her spot and using her 40A charger. Still, this week one day it charged only a few miles one day, the next day I manually insert-remove-insert (start charging now) charged it and it did charge. The next day, I let it run the schedule and it didn't charge. Then the next day I let it run on schedule and it did charge. So it's kind of a crap shoot this week....I can plug it in at 5-6pm, and it may not be charged the next morning. Or, it may be fully charged the next morning. You never know. Either way, it really should not be starting the charge until 7:30pm, but yet it does. I've been setting the car to 12A before I shut it down...and that shouldn't have any bearing on it because once the charger is seen as a 240V charger, it should charge fast.

If I were to guess, something is wrong with the car right now, and it's simply not consistently identifying either charger properly, and it thinks it's only getting 120V or something like that. The garage circuit is all fine. I just ran the compressor yesterday and filled up the cars tires. It's a 240V compressor.

It's probably time I just take it to the dealer, but the problem is, they'll plug it in and it'll charge fine for them. It sucks to troubleshoot intermittent things.

Maybe I'll start by having them check all the software revs, and see if there's an extended battery test they can run.
 

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It sounds like it could be a broken charge port where one of the 120V+ sockets is bad. Depending on how you plug in the J1772 connector the Bolt may see 240V or 120V, if it only sees the 1 hot lead then it will default to 120V and either 8 or 12 amps. I'd say it is not the J1772 connector because your wife's car charges with no issue.
 

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It sounds like you have ruled out the problem being related to the EVSE, so that is a good thing. You should also get that software update done to rule out that having any possible impact on this issue. At this point I would take it in for that and to let them try to diagnose the charging problem. Hopefully they can test jcanoe's theory. It can be frustrating with intermittent issues, but take it back multiple times if necessary. You obviously can't live with a BEV that won't consistently charge.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
It looks like I'm going to be going down the rabbit hole that is GM service. I know with the Chevy Volt, there were Volt advisers. Are there also Bolt Advisers?

I ask because:

Last Monday I took the car in to be checked out, and get the Radio Software updates, and Loss of Propulsion High Voltage Battery Without Notification updates that we got notified in the mail about many many months ago.

In the summer, I'd been getting 220+ mile charges with no issue. Last winter I was getting 155-165 mile ranges every day. (this is the middle range figure, not the "max" nor "min" one on the gauge. This winter I have been getting more like 125-135 mile ranges after fully charging every day. And, if you've read the above thread, I was first triggered to do something because the car would not follow my "OFF PEAK" only charge schedule.

So it was in last monday. I was irritated immediately when I picked it up because the service guy told me that they know why it was charging even on-peak....because I had it set up to do it that way. That was BS. What they did not comprehend is that Location based charging was on. An, yes, I verified it when I got home, and, I tested it with it both on and off over a couple weeks. It didn't matter. The car wouldn't obey my off-peak only setting. And, despite the "departure" setting being apparently calculated on 120V charging, causing it to charge early, that should not come into play, because the car even warns you when you turn on OFF-PEAK charging that "you may not get fully charged blah blah blah" because you're forcing it to charge off-peak only. (paraphrased of course). So the mechanic completely reset my charge settings, thinking he was doing me a big favor and "fixing" my problem. I knew it wouldn't but complied. I verified that it was set to Departure, and Off-Peak when I got home, but left OFF departure based charging.
I plugged it in, in the afternoon. The light went to the delayed charge type notification, so I walked away. I came back 45 mins later and it was charging. It wasn't supposed to start for a few hours yet, but it did anyway, costing 4x my night-time electric rate. I was ticked off.

I drove it for a week and it just plain doesn't obey the off-peak setting. But, here's where I got even more angry. Ever since the update of the software a week ago, my fully charged range has been between 85 and 99 miles in the morning, when fully charged. Now THAT is not appropriate for ANY chevy Bolt that has no problem with it. I have driven it every day, wondering if maybe I needed to set a good driving style trend, but that didn't matter. It's just always still below 100 miles.

This a.m. I went to preheat it and my MyChev app on the phone told me "your car needs service", and said I needed the "SDGM and BYOM2+ radio software updates" and "Loss of Propulsion High Voltage battery without notification" update, both expire 4/30/2020. I know those were the ones they had just done last week...but used that opportunity to use the App to schedule another service visit for Thursday. I want them to take a look at it all again.

I'm starting to think I may be affected just like that guy that's been in the news article lately who's on his 3rd battery pack. Something definitely isn't right, and of course no matter how handy I am, I can't get into the software guts of this thing to fix it. So I'm going to keep beating on the door of the dealer until they get it right. It really annoyed me that they don't understand location based charging, and apparently don't understand either the volt nor the bolt
as well as their customer.

Incidentally, I have been waiting because my ultimate goal is to buy an Equinox EV (better yet, PHEV), and also a Suburban/Tahoe PHEV. I would buy those TODAY if they were available. But, I have become a bit dismayed by GM since they started saying they're not going to use the Voltec drivetrain model anymore. At minimum, for my truck, I need a tow vehicle capable of 8500lbs of towing that can take me into the middle of nowhwere and back, hundreds of miles from charge stations. Ford sounds like they're going to have an F-150 shortly that will do that...but if GM drops voltec, they won't. So although I was completely in love with the Volt, I'm just a little less happy with the Bolt, and becoming a bit worried that I won't be a future GM customer if they don't build the SUV/Truck I need. Sorry to add that on to the discussion, but if GM reads this, maybe it'll make a difference. If they don't do Voltec on a truck, I'm planning to get the F-150 once it's available, as I'm overdue to buy a tow vehicle.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I did just reach out to customer service and have a case assigned now. It sounds like a senior advisor should contact me before my appointment. Hopefully that gets things on the right track.
 

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IIRC, the J1772 protocol calls for a variable duty cycle square wave on the Pilot pin to set the charge current. If that pin is broken/not making contact. I believe the charger cannot provide more than the minimum amperage. Something is screwy either in the charge port or the charger itself.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Yeah, that's the kind of thing I have a concern about. I personally think there may be a problem with the charge port on the car. My 2014 chevy volt had a problem with its charge port once and it had to be swapped out. This charging level issue has happened on 3 different chargers.

Probably the biggest issue I face is that the dealership is almost completely ignorant of these EVs. They have one single mechanic who went to training and it sounds like it was only on the volt, and years ago. So nothing specialized on the bolt. In dealing with them, they have such a low understanding of how things work that I can explain things 5 times and they don't get it. Basically anyone who owns one and is on this forum probably knows volumes more than they do about the car. I had it in for a 2nd service visit this last week so they could figure it out, and they ended up throwing their hands up and giving up.

If anyone on this list has a '17 Bolt, and is living in the midwest, what types of fully charged range are you showing this year? (And use the middle number, not the minimum or maximum number. I told my dealer that all last winter I was 150 or above. This year was in the 130's and then 85-99, and now the 120's. And this winter I'm having issues where some days the car doesn't charge at all...maybe 10-12 times now this winter. I'm really glad it's a lease, and not a purchase at this point, because I wouldn't want to own it.
 
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