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Hi all,

My 2017 Volt with less than 6000 miles was involved in a garage fire when my neighbors half on the garage burned. My Volt and my Volkswagen Jetta both received heavy smoke damage, but did not burn. The insurance company wants to total both cars, and I'm considering accepting a roughly 15k payment (4.5k to lien holder and 10k to me) and keep the car. The car would be issued a salvage title (California), making the car worth only the salvage value of 11k. I'm wondering about the hidden risks of the heat the car was subjected to in the fire, and how that would affect electronic system, airbags, and battery. Does anyone have any idea of the amount of heat it would take to damage the cars systems? The white paint was yellowed from the smoke, but the car did not get hot enough to blister the paint. any opinions would be appreciated. By the way, the offer to surrender the car is in the neighborhood of 26,000 before paying off the 4500 still owed on the can.

Thanks!

Mark
 

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did anyone start the car after insurance inspection- any codes showing ?

I so want to ask if the Volt auto ran the A/C to cool the battery during the fire or if it would even do that.

Most fire inspection can get an idea of the max heat -
 

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What's the effect of a salvage titile on the warranty?
 

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I'd take the $26K, that's a lot for a 2017. When I bought my Model 3 I had Tesla look up the trade in value or my 2017, they only offered me $14K, that's a major reason that I kept it. I have a lot more miles on mine, 40K, but it is the same year as yours. With the 22K that you clear you could find another 2017 for less money and come out ahead or you could use it on a new car.
 

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Salvage title will void all warranties. If I were you, I would take the full payout and let them auction the car off.
Agreed. Salvage titles void warranties, including the battery and EV component warranty. Also, you'll never get the smoke smell out of the cars.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for all of the replies guys!

Cord - There are no indicator lights that are showing any problems. I have the car back in my possession now, waiting to make a decision for how to proceed. I wondered about the cooling system start to cool the batteries during the fire. I asked a dealer if this could be determined by checking the computer history. They said no, but I have to wonder. I'll check with the fire inspector to get an idea of the temperature of the garage interior during the fire.

Jmaj and TripleAech - I had not considered the warranty issue. That probably nails it, however, I did let the dealer talk me into the extended warranty. I wonder if that is voided also?

bjrosen - I'm started to lean towards your suggestion, but I don't think I'll go for a used volt. A new one probably makes more sense however Premiers are getting difficult to find now, even in the Los Angeles metro area. The only thing that bugs me is the depreciation of a new vehicle! I just took it in the shorts on the 2017, now to do it again is hard to swallow. I wonder about a 2018. Are there any significant improvements from 2018 - 2019?
 

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Jmaj and TripleAech - I had not considered the warranty issue. That probably nails it, however, I did let the dealer talk me into the extended warranty. I wonder if that is voided also?
No such thing as an extended warranty. What you have is a service contract labelled as a warranty. Check the fine print and I suspect a salvage title will void this contract as well.
 

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did anyone start the car after insurance inspection- any codes showing ?

I so want to ask if the Volt auto ran the A/C to cool the battery during the fire or if it would even do that.

Most fire inspection can get an idea of the max heat -
what would really be cool if the volt had a fire extinguisher to shoot at the fire near it in case it was small to protect itself....ooops.
 

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If you are thinking about getting a new car then you should consider a BEV instead of a new Volt. Supposedly there are big discounts available on the Bolt and the price of the RWD SR+ Model 3 is about the same as a Volt Premier. You live in CA so charging infrastructure should be no problem at all for you. You also don't need AWD because it doesn't snow there so the RWD Model 3 would be fine for you. In making a decision about a BEV you should look at a map of chargers to see if all of the places that you go to are covered. For Tesla use their Supercharger map, for the Bolt use Plugshare. Before I bought my Model 3 AWD I did just that, I looked at the Tesla Supercharger map to see if all of New England was covered as well as Eastern Canada. I determined that the coverage was more than good enough so I bought the Model 3. I've done lot's of road trips in the last couple of months and charging has never been inconvenient. As I've traveled I've also kept an eye out for CCS chargers to see how well that network is building out. I've been surprised at how many brand new CCS chargers I've encountered, they are lower power than Superchargers and there are typically only one or two plugs vs eight for a Supercharger location but they are there. You live in CA which is several years ahead of the other states so if I'm seeing good Supercharger coverage and some CCS coverage you'll find Superchargers everywhere and many more CCS chargers than I encounter. BTW you might be able to buy a LR RWD Model 3 off menu, that would be the best choice for CA. Given that you have to get a new car I'd take the time to make the right decision for you. Used EVs have the virtue of being very cheap, so if you want to stick with the Volt I'd get a used one rather than a new one. If you are just commuting with the car then you'll have other options for a used EV. One of the guys that I work with just picked up a used Chevy Spark EV for $7500, it only has 25000 miles on it. He bought it for commuting which is what the Spark was built for, it doesn't have much more range than the Volt, 80 mile vs 53, but it's incredibly efficient, he got 5.5 miles/KW on his drive home after he picked it up, that was highway driving.
 

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Jmaj and TripleAech - I had not considered the warranty issue. That probably nails it, however, I did let the dealer talk me into the extended warranty. I wonder if that is voided also?
You should look through your paperwork on that extended warranty. It's possible that you may be able to get refunded since the car is being totaled before the warranty ever went into effect.
 

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Thanks for all of the replies guys!

Cord - There are no indicator lights that are showing any problems. I have the car back in my possession now, waiting to make a decision for how to proceed. I wondered about the cooling system start to cool the batteries during the fire. I asked a dealer if this could be determined by checking the computer history. They said no, but I have to wonder. I'll check with the fire inspector to get an idea of the temperature of the garage interior during the fire.

Jmaj and TripleAech - I had not considered the warranty issue. That probably nails it, however, I did let the dealer talk me into the extended warranty. I wonder if that is voided also?

bjrosen - I'm started to lean towards your suggestion, but I don't think I'll go for a used volt. A new one probably makes more sense however Premiers are getting difficult to find now, even in the Los Angeles metro area. The only thing that bugs me is the depreciation of a new vehicle! I just took it in the shorts on the 2017, now to do it again is hard to swallow. I wonder about a 2018. Are there any significant improvements from 2018 - 2019?
The improvements made for the 2019 Volt are mostly on the Volt Premier or are options on the Volt LT. The 2019 can have a 7.2kW onboard charger (charges twice as fast on 240V as the 2017 Volt; requires a minimum of a 40/50 amp 240V circuit for the 7.2kW charging rate.) There is a power driver's seat with adjustable lumbar support but no memory settings. The adaptive cruise control is enhanced, now you can engage standard (non-radar) cruise if you wish to use cruise when the weather condition does not allow the radar to function properly. The driver information center (DIC) screen has been redesigned; both the DIC screen and the Infotainment screen support higher resolution; the backup camera is an HD digital camera in the 2019.) The regen level when driving in L or using the paddle has been remapped to be more aggressive. (For those that experience sub freezing winter temperatures the set point for the deferred Engine Assist Heat setting in the 2019 Volt is now -14F (was previously +15F). The standard set point for the Engine Assist Heat is the same (35F.) (This helps if you are heading out in your 2019 Volt in the cold for a short distance trip to the store and you don't want the gas engine to start running because it won't run long enough to produce any cabin heat anyway (the whole purpose of Engine Assist Heat) on such a short trip; On the 2019 Volt when you set Engine Assist Heat to be Deferred the gas engine will not start unless the outside air temperature is -14F or colder. If it is that cold, stay home; just saying.
 

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If you are thinking about getting a new car then you should consider a BEV instead of a new Volt. Supposedly there are big discounts available on the Bolt and the price of the RWD SR+ Model 3 is about the same as a Volt Premier.
Only when one compares the MSRP of the Volt to the totally non negotiable list price of a base M3, are they similar. OTD, a Volt Premier will be several thousand less than the cheapest Model 3.

Unless of course someone is actually stupid enough to pay MSRP on a discontinued car, with steadily declining popularity.

The biggest problem you'll have is actually finding a new 2019 Premier, but if you do, here is one example from CarGurus. Quite a bit less than the cheapest M3.


 

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Only when one compares the MSRP of the Volt to the totally non negotiable list price of a base M3, are they similar. OTD, a Volt Premier will be several thousand less than the cheapest Model 3.

Unless of course someone is actually stupid enough to pay MSRP on a discontinued car, with steadily declining popularity.

The biggest problem you'll have is actually finding a new 2019 Premier, but if you do, here is one example from CarGurus. Quite a bit less than the cheapest M3.


If you can find a new 2019 at that price that would be a good deal. You may be able to find a Bolt for a similar price, people keep mentioning a massive discount on Bolt's. If price is the primary driver then those would be a good way to go.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I think I'll stick with the Volt. It's perfect for my situation, and personally, I think the Bolt is butt ugly! I also like the security of the gas powered generator. Also I charge for free at work, so in the two years I've had the volt I spent no more than 20 bucks on gas.
I have found a good deal on a used 2019 Volt Premier with an almost identical package to mine. It only has a little over 6,000 miles, which is equivalent to my Volt, fully loaded for 31k. Using the insurance settlements from the volt and the 2009 Jetta the financials are a wash and I walk away with a 2019 Volt in place of the 2017. The only downside is that I have to fly to San Jose to get the car. which is about a 5 hour drive to get home. I have a gift card for SW Airlines so the flight will cost me nothing. A little risk involved, but I think it's manageable.
 

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I think I'll stick with the Volt. It's perfect for my situation, and personally, I think the Bolt is butt ugly! I also like the security of the gas powered generator. Also I charge for free at work, so in the two years I've had the volt I spent no more than 20 bucks on gas.
I have found a good deal on a used 2019 Volt Premier with an almost identical package to mine. It only has a little over 6,000 miles, which is equivalent to my Volt, fully loaded for 31k. Using the insurance settlements from the volt and the 2009 Jetta the financials are a wash and I walk away with a 2019 Volt in place of the 2017. The only downside is that I have to fly to San Jose to get the car. which is about a 5 hour drive to get home. I have a gift card for SW Airlines so the flight will cost me nothing. A little risk involved, but I think it's manageable.
This sounds like a good plan and also sounds like you got a great deal on the 2019.
 

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I think I'll stick with the Volt. It's perfect for my situation, and personally, I think the Bolt is butt ugly! I also like the security of the gas powered generator. Also I charge for free at work, so in the two years I've had the volt I spent no more than 20 bucks on gas.
I have found a good deal on a used 2019 Volt Premier with an almost identical package to mine. It only has a little over 6,000 miles, which is equivalent to my Volt, fully loaded for 31k. Using the insurance settlements from the volt and the 2009 Jetta the financials are a wash and I walk away with a 2019 Volt in place of the 2017. The only downside is that I have to fly to San Jose to get the car. which is about a 5 hour drive to get home. I have a gift card for SW Airlines so the flight will cost me nothing. A little risk involved, but I think it's manageable.
That sounds fair. You get the upgraded charger which should be nice and all of the accumulated bug fixes over the last three years and 31K is a decent price.
 
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