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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought a 13 Volt this past Sunday and dropped it off at the service shop yesterday. I fell in love with the car since I test drove one a few weeks ago. I then test drove one and then another was loaned to me for a couple of hours the day before I made the decision to buy one.

The Problem: The Volt I purchased began making a really really high pitch, ear-ringing type noise on the drive home from the dealership that comes somewhere from the middle or back (probably somewhere in the battery pack?)

Before writing this post I checked out 2 other posts but I don't think they are the same as what mine is experiencing.

1) gm-volt.com/forum/showthread.php?12888-Electrical-Noise-and-Premium-Fuel
2) http://gm-volt.com/forum/archive/index.php/t-13642.html

PIC5412 in the second link describes the noise somewhat, but it is not a wine, just an incredibly high pitched ring. They checked the floor and everything around the area to make sure all was tight and it didn't go away.

The guy helping me at the service department could here it and drove around with the techs each time they tried something to fix it and I was just told that they added insulation to the area and it's "better". He also drove another one of their volts and agreed it was unique to mine. I did not here in any of the other Volts I drove.

Anyone experience similar issues or have any suggestions of what to do next?
 

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I'm really sorry to hear this. Noises are incredibly hard to track down and not everyone hears the same noises. Hopefully you'll get it sorted. In answer to your question, we may have someone with the occasional noise but nothing systematic.
 

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That is abnormal. At first read, I would definitely have them fix it completely. That is a defective car in my opinion so hopefully your states lemon laws will help you out of the dealer cannot/will not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Nope, just a constant high pitch that does come and go with intensity as I break or accelerate. I'm going to drive it today at the dealership after work. I'll post an update tonight afterwards. I do not like that they had to "make" and add insulation to possibly make it go away. Maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised and they'll replace it without a hastle if it can't be fixed.

Thanks for the reply's, I'm excited to be part of the Volt community, hopefully with a happy and healthy car soon.
 

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I get that too - very high pitched (maybe 12,000 Hz) but not higher. Kids can hear higher Hz levels than older folks.

Listen to this and see if you agree it's in the 11,000-12,000 Hz range: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qNf9nzvnd1k

My PC in the basement also gives me a tone right about the same pitch.
 

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Try posting a recording of the sound (windows closed, radio off) here if possible.
 

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I wonder if there's some sort of part failure (like a capacitor) within your DC-DC converter for the 12V battery charging, causing it to whine due to running at an undesirable frequency.

Try to see if the noise is coming from under the hatch storage area. If it is, my recommendation would be to have them replace the DC-DC converter (aka Auxiliary Power Module, APM)

To know for certain if this is the source, the hatch of the floor can be easily removed with four bolts/nuts. The APM is then in plain site in the center near the backs of the seats.

The other whine some people hear is when the engine is on, during deceleration etc. This is not very loud, but can be heard, and is due to the frequencies of the motor controller under the hood. It's not constantly on as you describe though, so I currently suspect the APM is to blame, but I'm just another Volt driver so don't hold me to it. :)
 

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It could be the electric fuel pump. My ford edge had that problem. The fuel pump should be located at the back of the car somewhere. It runs all the time to keep the fuel line pressurized. If you are facing forward in the car and turn your head side to side it should get slightly louder and you might be able to hear it standing outside the vehicle as well. On my ford, I either got used to it or my aging hearing finally filtered it out. I described the pitch to be similar to an old am radio tuned slightly off station. Hi pitched and very constant.
 

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If I'm driving at very low speeds with my windows down, and the car is next to a wall or barrier, I can hear what I believe is the DC to AC power inverter whine a bit in response to pressing on the accelerator. But under any other conditions, I can't hear the whine at all. I'd say your car may have a power inverter problem that results in the excessive whining you're hearing. Is the sound louder with the windows up or down? If you hear the sound clearly with the windows up, perhaps the sound is electrical noise that's being amplified by your car's audio system?
 

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I have tinnitus so, I hear the airliner high pitch tone all day night and any other time but nothing catches my attention in mine while driving. Maybe the cooling fan by rear battery? If you remove all the covers under the rear hatch, that cover battery and components, does the noise get louder driving?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
We (me and Chevy) are 95% sure it's coming from the APM. The techs worked on it yesterday morning and they put some extra insulation around it which might have made the sound slightly less but still very noticable. My service manager agreed when we test drove it last night so we test drove one of the other Volts they had on the sales lot to make sure mine had a problem but that one had the exact same noise! High high ring that changes intensity with breaking and accelerating. I was really surprised and I drove home last night confused becuase I still don't believe I heard it in the other two I test drove. It's very easy for me to hear, and for him to hear, my wife, and my co-workers today. I'm an engineer (not electrical) that does a lot of quality assurance testing on various systems (not cars) and to me it's just a "doesn't feel right" issue. My plan was to go drive another at another dealership this weekend and I still may do that but I got a call from my service manager this afternoon and they said a GM representative wants to come out and meet me next week and inspect my car. I wasn't expecting any further follow up at this point so it was a surprise. Part of thinks I might be crazy and part of me thinks they might have a problem with a small batch of these cars? I don't know but I'm glad that it has their attention and everyone at Chevy has been treating me great so far.

I'm going to try and get a recording of it tonight or tomorrow and post it for you guys to hear. I'm also planning to take off the back floor to expose the APM and sit in my back while my wife drives to see if I can better pin point the exact source.
 
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I bought a 13 Volt this past Sunday and dropped it off at the service shop yesterday. I fell in love with the car since I test drove one a few weeks ago. I then test drove one and then another was loaned to me for a couple of hours the day before I made the decision to buy one.

The Problem: The Volt I purchased began making a really really high pitch, ear-ringing type noise on the drive home from the dealership that comes somewhere from the middle or back (probably somewhere in the battery pack?)

Before writing this post I checked out 2 other posts but I don't think they are the same as what mine is experiencing.

1) gm-volt.com/forum/showthread.php?12888-Electrical-Noise-and-Premium-Fuel
2) http://gm-volt.com/forum/archive/index.php/t-13642.html

PIC5412 in the second link describes the noise somewhat, but it is not a wine, just an incredibly high pitched ring. They checked the floor and everything around the area to make sure all was tight and it didn't go away.

The guy helping me at the service department could here it and drove around with the techs each time they tried something to fix it and I was just told that they added insulation to the area and it's "better". He also drove another one of their volts and agreed it was unique to mine. I did not here in any of the other Volts I drove.

Anyone experience similar issues or have any suggestions of what to do next?
Caleb,

I apologize that you have experienced this concern so soon with your Volt. Could you please PM me the best way for you to be reached and the last 8 of your VIN. I would like to get your Dedicated Advisor involved with this for you.

Thank you,

-Ian Chevrolet Volt Customer Service
 

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My noise is getting worse. Has anyone here gotten their APM replaced? Or have anyone had the noise get louder over time?

I took the back cover off today and ran the Volt around the neighborhood. It is indeed the APM and after 10 minutes with the Volt on, i found the bose amp getting quite warm along with the right side of the APM where the HV wires enter.
 

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Did anybody resolve this issue?

I am running into same issue. I bought my vehicle about a month ago. When I drive in electric between 0 - 30 Mph with gas pedal pushed, it produces high pitch noise. It is annoying as hell. When I run the vehicle with gas, I can hear it when I push gas pedal no matter what speed.
 

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Are you a (non-rock) musician, by any chance? Of my group of friends who own Volts, only I and the other musician can hear this sound. It's definitely there on every Volt I'd driven or ridden in, but most people can't hear it unless they've been trained to listen to overtones for purposes of tuning instruments. (Rock musicians can't hear it 'cause they're all going deaf!)

If it's so loud that your parents and grandparents can hear it (i.e., not just children with pristine ears), then it may be a real problem. I only hear it below 35 mph because there's virtually no road noise at those speeds. At higher speeds, the pervasive tire rumble drowns it out. At lower speeds, I sometimes turn on the radio to redirect my attention.
 
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My noise is getting worse. Has anyone here gotten their APM replaced? Or have anyone had the noise get louder over time?

I took the back cover off today and ran the Volt around the neighborhood. It is indeed the APM and after 10 minutes with the Volt on, i found the bose amp getting quite warm along with the right side of the APM where the HV wires enter.
Bonaire,

Have you contacted your Dedicated Advisor regarding this concern? If you would like I would be more than happy to get you connected with your Advisor. If you could PM me the best way to reach you and the last 8 of your VIN.

Thank you,

-Ian Chevrolet EV Customer Service
 
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Did anybody resolve this issue?

I am running into same issue. I bought my vehicle about a month ago. When I drive in electric between 0 - 30 Mph with gas pedal pushed, it produces high pitch noise. It is annoying as hell. When I run the vehicle with gas, I can hear it when I push gas pedal no matter what speed.
Afternoon EVolt3163,

If you could PM me as well with the last 8 of your VIN and the best way for you to be reached I will have your Advisor contact you too.

-Ian Chevrolet EV Customer Service
 

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I get that too - very high pitched (maybe 12,000 Hz) but not higher. Kids can hear higher Hz levels than older folks.

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Mine is about 9k-10k I think .. mostly on regen coasting/breaking <40mph

This and Bluetooth static are on volt case# 71-128754793. My daughter and I can hear it .. my wife can't (and she's the one always asking me if I'm deaf!) LOL

Angelo
 
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