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Discussion Starter #1



For the last month during the hottest part of the year for us, I have had the above Weego JS12 12000 mAh Jump Starter Heavy Duty Battery Pack installed in my Gen1 basically replacing the stock 12V AGM battery and it has worked just fine. I have it wired between chassis ground and positive terminal of the stock battery thru a 100A fuse.

I haven't committed to pulling out out the heavy 12V AGM battery just yet. Instead, I just have the negative terminal pulled off from the AGM eliminating it completely from the circuit for the past month. This small 120000 mAh battery pack has no issue starting and running my Gen1 at all. I have wired the 14V input into the pack from the switched Accessory Power so the battery pack will only charge when the Volt is powered on from the 14V APM. Operating this way, the battery pack always gets a charge from the APM and normally stays fully charged with all 5 indicators lit when operating the pushbutton.

For those who like to keep their headlamps on with the Volt turned off, you may want to hold onto your AGM. I was able to flatten this battery pack after about 20min with my Gen1 turned off and my aftermarket LED headlamps on. Since the Gen1 is smart enough to shut off the headlamps and interior lamps after 10min, I had to turn off then back on my headlamps in order to get the small battery pack fully drained. I suppose leaving the hazard flashers turned on would also drain this pack alot faster than if the stock AGM battery were used.

Although this battery pack has worked fine even in the extreme 100+F temps with the Volt sitting outside all day in the sun for the month of July, it will be interesting in seeing how this pack would perform in the dead of winter cold temps.




I do admit that I overpayed for the Weego battery pack as the GOOLOO 400A Peak 12000mAh Portable Car Jump Starter Power Pack GP01 appears to be identical and more than likely made by the same Chinese manufacturer for half the price!:eek:
 

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Cool idea. Although I have no interest in cutting any wires or plastic panels in my volt, it seems like this would also be a nifty way to charge your phone with the car off. I actually use a GoalZero torch 250 flashlight for that purpose. It has a solar panel, hand crank, a red light, an LED flashlight, and an LED Spotlight as well as a USB port. I doubt it can be used to start the car though.

http://www.goalzero.com/p/239/torch-250-flashlight
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I doubt it can be used to start the car though.

You may be surprised. With the small battery pack almost spent, reading @10VDC on my OLED voltmeter and showing only 1 of the 5 battery capacity indicator lights lit I was still able to successfully start my Gen1. Five minutes later though with the headlamps left on and the Volt turned off it was spent completely!;)
 

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Replacing a 60Ah pack with a 12Ah one seems kinda chancy to me. Obviously it's worked for you so far, but I don't know that I'd want to chance it.
 

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We know that GM will eliminate a garage door opener to save a few dollars. So if they could save dollars on the AGM by replacing it with something like this, I think they would. So what do they know about the AGM battery (reliability, safety, durability) that we don't?
 

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You may be surprised. With the small battery pack almost spent, reading @10VDC on my OLED voltmeter and showing only 1 of the 5 battery capacity indicator lights lit I was still able to successfully start my Gen1. Five minutes later though with the headlamps left on and the Volt turned off it was spent completely!;)
My flashlight only has a USB port on it, none of the fancier higher voltage ports your battery has. It's awesome for charging my phone a half dozen times or my iPad a 2 or 3 times, but to boot all the computers needed to start a Volt? I don't think so.
 

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To the OP with the gooloo how would you set this up in the rear where the 12v battery is located? You would have to have a way not only to have the output to start and run the car, but input to charge as well. I would be interested how this works out. Keep us posted.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
To the OP with the gooloo how would you set this up in the rear where the 12v battery is located? You would have to have a way not only to have the output to start and run the car, but input to charge as well. I would be interested how this works out. Keep us posted.

The 12V DC output out of the battery pack from either the higher capacity Jumpstart socket or the 2.1mm 10A DC socket are always hot/live. I have the positive from the battery pack terminating onto the top + post of the AGM and the ground is attached to chassis ground. You only need the @12V initially in order to turn on the Volt and from that point the load is assumed by the 14V APM. The ON/OFF button on the battery pack will enable the 19V laptop voltage output and USB 5V output. I have connected the 14V 1A battery pack charging input from the fused Accessory Power Receptacle (cigarette lighter plug) in the rear console. This feeds 14V DC power from the APM when the Volt is turned ON and the KR76 Retained Accessory Power Relay is energized.
 

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Two things that are likely different with a 12v Li-Ion vs. the OEM 12v AGM are voltage vs. SOC and the optimal charging current vs SOC. It is likely that the APM output will either fail to fully charge the 12v Li-Ion or over-charge it. In the latter case it could overheat or at least experience greatly reduced lifetime.

KNS
 

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Two things that are likely different with a 12v Li-Ion vs. the OEM 12v AGM are voltage vs. SOC and the optimal charging current vs SOC. It is likely that the APM output will either fail to fully charge the 12v Li-Ion or over-charge it. In the latter case it could overheat or at least experience greatly reduced lifetime.

KNS



Pictured above is the 14V DC wall charging adapter that shipped with the battery pack to be able to charge at home.

If the APM itself were regulating the battery pack charge this may be the case but since the battery pack is providing the charging regulation using the accessory power 14V DC at 1A input I am counting on the battery pack not to overheat/overcharge. It did take several hours of plugging the battery pack into the wall for it to be fully charged back up following me completely depleting the pack.
 

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I have connected the 14V 1A battery pack charging input from the fused Accessory Power Receptacle (cigarette lighter plug) in the rear console. This feeds 14V DC power from the APM when the Volt is turned ON and the KR76 Retained Accessory Power Relay is energized.
Do you have a picture of how you setup the 14V 1A charge plug at the accessory power receptacle?
 

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Pictured above is the 14V DC wall charging adapter that shipped with the battery pack to be able to charge at home.

If the APM itself were regulating the battery pack charge this may be the case but since the battery pack is providing the charging regulation using the accessory power 14V DC at 1A input I am counting on the battery pack not to overheat/overcharge. It did take several hours of plugging the battery pack into the wall for it to be fully charged back up following me completely depleting the pack.
Thanks for the quick reply. What I think I understand -- and I am probably wrong -- is that you have connected the pack in place of the original AGM and that you have the pictured charger connected to the pack and fed from one of the "cigarette lighter" sockets via a small inverter. I also understand that the pack can sustain the 12v accessory loads for at least several minutes after the Volt has been turned off.

There is probably at least one diode preventing the pack from feeding dc back into the 14v charger that came with it. If this pack is intended for starting ICE vehicles then any diodes in the path feeding the load (ie, the connections you have used to connect the pack in lieu of the AGM) would have to be quite hefty.

If diodes are present in the load path then, when the Volt is turned on, the pack will be charged only by the small 14v charger that came with it. If there are no diodes in the load path then, when the Volt is turned on, the pack will be charged to the higher of the voltages provided by the APM and the small 14v charger. I suspect that might have an unanticipated impact on the APM and might not be conducive to long pack life.

KNS
 

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Not being one to discourage experimentation, but, this looks a little iffy:

- battery is 1/5 the power of the OEM.
- charging rate may be a problem.
- Chinese batteries are banned on airliners because they catch fire (hover boards)
- Volt's electrical system is pretty sensitive to low voltage.
 

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I personally wouldn't supplant the AGM with that, but I do have one in the car for just in case booting the car, and for jumpstarting other people's cars.
 

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Has anyone tried replacing the battery with a deep cycle battery? Just wondering since it appears that the CCA (cranking amps) when starting up the Volt may not be as important as the AH. Also, is it possible to us a smaller deep cycle battery, say 35 AH, possibly from a solar array or trolling motor type? These tend to be less than half the price of the conventional battery for the Volt.
 

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The charge cycle is tuned to AGM-type batteries.
In theory you could use anything that charges to the same parameters of AGM.
OPs solution works because it has it's own charging circuitry in the device, vs plugging in a 'dumb' battery in-place of the existing.
 

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The charge cycle is tuned to AGM-type batteries.
In theory you could use anything that charges to the same parameters of AGM.
OPs solution works because it has it's own charging circuitry in the device, vs plugging in a 'dumb' battery in-place of the existing.
But aren't there 12v deep cycle AGM batteries around 40-60 AH?
 

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I think this is a really cool experiment. My concern would be battery life. Lithium batteries age fast when stored at high temperature and at full charge. Assuming a hot car in the summer, this may not last as long as you might like. But maybe that is ok depending on price and ability to predict failure before it leaves you stranded (built in capacity tester).

I wonder how far this could be taken. Maybe a rack of cheap AA rechargeable batteries?
 

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But aren't there 12v deep cycle AGM batteries around 40-60 AH?
Maybe, if you can find one.

Wasn't disagreeing with you, just adding a caveat to this (to paraphrase myself, "Sure, but it has to be AGM type"):
Also, is it possible to us a smaller deep cycle battery, say 35 AH, possibly from a solar array or trolling motor type?
 
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