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Discussion Starter #1
I owned a 2013 for 3 years, and 2 months ago got a 2018. It’s been cold enough to use the heater the past few weeks, and when out for a drive, the first leg is as expected. Temp set to 72, auto, eco, recirc on.

But after I stop for several minutes or an hour, the heater blows cool air, and I have to turn it up to 74-75 to get warmer air. Doesn’t seem to matter if the sun is out or not.

My Gen1 I could leave at 72 all year, and it was perfect. I’m disappointed I have to mess with the temp settings. I’d leave it at 75, but on an initial trip, that’s way too warm. Sometimes if my initial trip is long (like an hour), I have to turn down to 70-71–it gets that warm.

Thanks for any ideas. It’s starting to sound like mine might have some defect (bad sensor?)
 

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I owned a 2013 for 3 years, and 2 months ago got a 2018. It’s been cold enough to use the heater the past few weeks, and when out for a drive, the first leg is as expected. Temp set to 72, auto, eco, recirc on.

But after I stop for several minutes or an hour, the heater blows cool air, and I have to turn it up to 74-75 to get warmer air. Doesn’t seem to matter if the sun is out or not.

My Gen1 I could leave at 72 all year, and it was perfect. I’m disappointed I have to mess with the temp settings. I’d leave it at 75, but on an initial trip, that’s way too warm. Sometimes if my initial trip is long (like an hour), I have to turn down to 70-71–it gets that warm.

Thanks for any ideas. It’s starting to sound like mine might have some defect (bad sensor?)
It does not sound like there is a problem with your 2018 Volt's climate control. The Gen 2 Volt's climate control is evidently programmed differently from the Gen 1. In response to the Gen 2 Volt's programming to maximize efficiency you have to set the climate control a few degrees higher than expected if you want to feel warm air at the vents. I set the climate control on my 2017 Volt to 73F in summer but when the temperature drops near freezing I will set the climate control to at least 74F.

If you want to obtain a lot of heat quickly, but kill your battery range, drop the climate control out of automatic. Set the HVAC to Max, not Economy. Direct the heat to your feet and the center dash. Set the fan speed to just above medium speed, set the airflow to recirculate and set the temperature to 82F or higher. That will get your Volt warm very quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks jcanoe. I forgot to mention that using A/C, I can set and leave it at 75, and it stays correct all the time. Which is why I didn’t immediately think it was a sensor issue.
 

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The few days it gets cold here in FL, I've not had any luck with any settings except turning up the temperature. It can be 35F outside, 45F in the cabin, and the temperature is set on 74 and it just blows cold air. Switch the automatic settings off and switch to Max, and it's still blowing cold air. I have to crank up the temperature to 78-80 in order to get it to actually warm up the interior. I've learned to just leave the settings wherever they are and use the temperature control to get heat. I wish it would just work the way you would expect: temp set at 74 and cabin temp around 45, and it should know it needs to throw some heat. I don't see why I should have to crank it up to 80 to stop it from blowing cold air.

And no, it doesn't just "feel" cold like a heat pump. It's not doing any heating because the energy meter is at 0.5 kW. Crank it up to 80 and you get 5-7 kW and you can feel that it is actually heating. Before cranking the temp up to 80, it does literally nothing. I suppose maybe it would if it was REALLY cold, but 45 in the cabin is cold to me. :)

Mike
 

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The Gen 2 Volt's climate control is evidently programmed differently from the Gen 1.
I recall reading a technical article that discussed this a while back. GM continues to make changes to their heating strategy and is even fine-tuning things in between generations (ie: ICE heating threshold changes for 2019). Didn't GM make all four seats heated in the second generation as standard equipment as part of these changes, also???


Set the HVAC to Max, not Economy.
I think taking the system out of Economy mode will have the system behave much more like the OP expects it to.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Heated seats are not standard equipment on Gen2s, especially not all 4. I was lucky to get an LT that did have the front 2, and also heated steering wheel (which I was specifically looking for, and glad I did. Pure awesomeness!)

I did try Max on my return drive today and it helped, but eventually switched back to eco, and upped to 74.

Thanks for the replies. Doesn’t sound like mine’s defective. Guess I’ll just have to fiddle with it in the winter.
 

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The ECO setting is the problem. It has a huge deadband where it does nothing, so if the interior temperature gets within roughly ~6-8 deg F it won't do anything. You end up getting the cabin warmed up because there's a huge temp differential, then if it cools down some you're not going to get any heat because the ECO deadband is keeping it from doing anything until things get really cold inside.

MAX is honestly better to use when the outside temp is far off your desired interior temperature, as it seems to tighten up the deadband and be more aggressive on energy usage for a given temperature offset (interior to setpoint).


No sense in complaining about the extra energy usage of MAX if you want your climate control to actually control the climate in the car.
 

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What he said but I aim the air more at chest or all on hands -well In North Texas we may have welding gloves but not driving gloves.
Really glad I got the heated seats and the Amazon 12 Volt blanket for the back seat.
 

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The ECO setting is the problem. It has a huge deadband where it does nothing, so if the interior temperature gets within roughly ~6-8 deg F it won't do anything. You end up getting the cabin warmed up because there's a huge temp differential, then if it cools down some you're not going to get any heat because the ECO deadband is keeping it from doing anything until things get really cold inside.

MAX is honestly better to use when the outside temp is far off your desired interior temperature, as it seems to tighten up the deadband and be more aggressive on energy usage for a given temperature offset (interior to setpoint).


No sense in complaining about the extra energy usage of MAX if you want your climate control to actually control the climate in the car.
I've heard this before, but switching from Eco to Max doesn't do anything that I can discern. It can be 25 degrees colder than the set temp in the cabin and the heater doesn't come on until I raise the set temp from 74 to about 80. It just doesn't work the way it should.

Mike
 

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MAX is honestly better to use when the outside temp is far off your desired interior temperature, as it seems to tighten up the deadband and be more aggressive on energy usage for a given temperature offset (interior to setpoint).
Max also blows the fan faster (which makes sense, since the extra heat from the electric heating element needs to move into the cabin).

I've heard this before, but switching from Eco to Max doesn't do anything that I can discern. It can be 25 degrees colder than the set temp in the cabin and the heater doesn't come on until I raise the set temp from 74 to about 80. It just doesn't work the way it should.
Maybe something really is wrong? My impression is that Max starts blowing warm air pretty soon. But then, I don't use it when it's 49 degrees out and my temp is set to 74 (your 25 degree temperature difference). In those cases I use Eco at around 74 and heated seats, and yeah, it doesn't really blow warm air. It just sort of slowly warms up to probably somewhere in the 60s.

I do use Max when it's in the 30s outside and the car isn't preconditioned. In those cases, getting warm air is almost immediate.
 

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Also, check that for the Climate and Air Quality settings, under Auto Fan Speed (maximum fan speed when HVAC is set to Auto) that this is not set to Low or Medium. This should be set to High if you want maximum cabin heating when the HVAC is set to Auto.
 

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I'm not sure the energy usage, or even a dead zone comes into play. The energy used could be minimal to get the coil just hotter than the ambient air in the car. Then (like a heat pump), the air coming in can be heating the car, but not be so hot (over 98 degrees) to feel hot to your skin. When you blow 74 degree air on your skin, it feels cold.
 

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I've heard this before, but switching from Eco to Max doesn't do anything that I can discern. It can be 25 degrees colder than the set temp in the cabin and the heater doesn't come on until I raise the set temp from 74 to about 80. It just doesn't work the way it should.

Mike
That's now how my '18 operates. Max and 74 gets the heat moving pretty good whenever it's in the high 40's. MAX still has a bit of a deadband, so if the car has been on for a while, the air coming out of the vents might be quite a bit cooler than 74, in which case turning it up to 76 usually gets things heating back up again.
 

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It wouldn't do anything in a Volt anyway. Compressor gonna compress, whenever the battery needs cooling.
Huh? No, that’s not what I’m talking about. My complaint is when it’s chilly outside on a sunny day and the cabin is a bit warmer than the HVAC setting. The AC comes on to cool the cabin for no reason.
 

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Huh? No, that’s not what I’m talking about. My complaint is when it’s chilly outside on a sunny day and the cabin is a bit warmer than the HVAC setting. The AC comes on to cool the cabin for no reason.
The AC can turn on if you have the Auto Defog setting turned on. The Volt will turn on the AC if it detects high humidity levels in the cabin. If you are driving and have the HVAC set to recirculate the cabin air the humidity level in the cabin can quickly rise due to respiration especially with 2 or more passengers.
 

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Was your whole body cold or just your feet? I have found over the years that if your shoes/boots get a good cold soaking and/or your feet are cold/damp then your normal heat setting feels like it is not doing the job. My brain translates cold feet to being cold overall even if that is not the case. The older you get the more this can happen too. In my Gen1 2013 I have days when I don’t think the heat is working and the next trip it feels like it is working too well and I really don’t change the settings often and just use Auto.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks for the ideas here. Now that it’s consistently cold outside, 30 instead of 50, I’m starting to appreciate the new Gen2 HVAC. And also getting used to it. I’ve modified some suggestions, and simply turn up the temperature a few degrees and/or hit the Max button for a few minutes (and then back to Eco when it’s comfortable). My Gen2 heats up a lot, lot faster than my Gen1, especially my seat heater (which I can’t even leave on high for more than a couple of minutes), and still love the heated steering wheel the most.
 
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