Loss of propulsion system
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Thread: Loss of propulsion system

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Default Propulsion system died while driving

    Yesterday while driving on a very windy back road that had a speed limit of 35mph my Volt died. There was a fairly loud band that seemed to come from under the shift lever. I think that is when the propulsion system shut down. I managed to coast two thirds of the way off the road, put the car in park and tried a restart. It did start with the check engine light on. OnStar told me I had a error code that said there was a problem with my propulsion system, and I should take the car into the dealer within seven days.
    My question is this, if I was traveling at 70 mph and the propulsion system quit could I shift into neutral and restart the car?

  2. #2
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    I don't know enough about your failure to know if it'd work.

    In general, yes. If you turn the car off while driving (double press on the power button,) you can switch to neutral and restart the car while it's still moving.

    Whether that would restore operation would depends on what caused the car to stop in the first place...
    Walter
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  3. #3
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    Actually, Probably Not. Most of the systems need to see a cycle into and out of Park by the "shift" lever to reset. Good luck trying that without coming to a stop first..

    And as an aside - my 2013 will Not restart and continue onward without going in/out of park if I "kill" it by hitting the power button twice while driving. I've tried it, just to see what happens and to be ready if I should do it by mistake. You can wake the Displays back up without the park sequence, but it won't "go"..
    Last edited by Rons2013; 09-01-2013 at 07:22 PM.
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  6. #4
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    After reading the discussion about accidently turni8ng it off, I did some testing (MY 2013) on a wide open local road. It actually took me a couple tries to successfully turn it off with the double hit. (You have to pause long enough between the hits.) The first time I turned it off, it took me two tries to turn it back on. The second time I was able to restart on the first try. Neither time required a full stop and 'Park'.

    Of course, in the circumstances of the OP, the 'Park' cycle may be required to deal with the event that caused the error.
    2013 Volt Crystal Red / Pebble Beige, Premium trim, Polished wheels, Nav/Bose, ESP 1/2 (Replaced '08 TCH) Hidden Content

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  7. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    132

    Default Loss of propulsion system

    We were driving on a very windy back road that has a speed limit of 35 mph. I heard a loud clump that seemed to come from below the shift lever. I think that was caused by the complete loss of power. I was able to cost partially off the road, put the car in park and tried to restart it. It did start with the check engine light on. I called OnStar they ran diagnostics and said I had a propulsion system problem and should take it to the dealer within the next 7 days.
    My question is if this happened at 70 mph could you shift into neutral and restart the Volt?

  8. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rons2013 View Post
    Actually, Probably Not. Most of the systems need to see a cycle into and out of Park by the "shift" lever to reset. Good luck trying that without coming to a stop first..

    And as an aside - my 2013 will Not restart and continue onward without going in/out of park if I "kill" it by hitting the power button twice while driving. I've tried it, just to see what happens and to be ready if I should do it by mistake. You can wake the Displays back up without the park sequence, but it won't "go"..
    Maybe you aren't doing it correctly, Rons2013?

    2013 Owners Manual, 9-18

    Restarting Procedure
    If the vehicle must be restarted
    while it is still moving, move the shift
    lever to N (Neutral) and press the
    POWER O button twice without
    pressing the brake pedal. The
    propulsion system will not restart in
    any other position.
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  9. #7
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    Nov 2011
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    What is the DTC code number?
    Would you call back OnStar so they can run a remote diagnostic and provide you
    with the error codes?
    Does your Volt run normally, now, or the problem and troublecode is still present?

    Francois
    B2653

  10. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    The check engine light is no longer on. The car has performed normally since the incident. I will take it in Tuesday, and will update the forum when I get it back.

  11. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    make a small label and put it by the onstar call button.
    "ASK for the ERROR CODE"

    or as my Aggie roommate said way too many times.
    "I can't help you with out a soil sample" :-)

    some question to the forum may require the year of the Volt to answer.

    do try a volt re-start in a save area- First time I did a test at NIGHT I had to manual turn back on the headlights.
    2012 RED Volt VIN:#C-8860 - Premium Leather Seats Jet Black with Dark Trim, Rear Camera & Park Assist, Nav
    09/29/2011 Ordered -- 11/15/2011 took it home

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  13. #10
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    Aug 2012
    Location
    Seminole, Fl.
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    Maybe you aren't doing it correctly, Rons2013?

    2013 Owners Manual, 9-18

    Restarting Procedure
    If the vehicle must be restarted
    while it is still moving, move the shift
    lever to N (Neutral) and press the
    POWER O button twice without
    pressing the brake pedal. The
    propulsion system will not restart in
    any other position.
    Well, RTFM would apply, right. Actually I was Probably trying to make it restart by pressing the power button Once, not Twice. Guess I need to experiment with this again and figure it out. Might be handy to know, someday..
    2015, Brownstone/Pebble/Premium, purchase 6/15/2015
    2013 #01800, Silver, purchase on 8/3/2012
    As an Engineer - what's not to like?

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