General Motors this week issued an expanded recall for all Chevy Bolt EV models manufactured from 2017 through the present due to the risk of fire. Essentially, every Chevy Bolt ever made is subject to the recall.
The recall stems from the fact that the battery on some Bolt models has two manufacturing defects. As a result, GM warns that the risk of the battery catching fire is higher. As part of the recall, GM will replace all impacted batteries with brand new ones free of charge. Not surprisingly, the recall is a huge economic hit for GM and will cost the company an estimated $1 billion.
How many cars are affected
According to GM, the recall impacts more than 73,000 owners across the U.S. and Canada. Approximately 9,300 vehicles were manufactured in 2019 alone while approximately 64,000 were manufactured between 2020 and 2021.
Here’s a video showing the aftermath of a Chevy Bolt fire:
What GM is doing to address the Chevy Bolt fire issue
Aside from replacing the battery on impacted cars, GM says the batteries will come with an 8-year/100,000-mile limited warranty. With so many cars at issue, GM says it’s working around the clock with its manufacturing partner LG to pump out as many new batteries as it can, as fast it can.
What to do if you have a Chevy Bolt and a replacement battery isn’t ready
If you have a Chevy Bolt and aren’t able to get a replacement battery right away, it’s understandable if you feel a bit wary about driving a car with an increased fire risk. That said, GM lists a few suggestions designed to mitigate the likelihood of a fire, along with some tips to mitigate the severity of a fire should one occur.
For starters, GM advises owners to “set their vehicle to a 90 percent state of charge limitation using Target Charge Level mode.” Specific instructions on how to do this are available on Chevy’s recall website over here. Users who are unable to implement this themselves are advised to visit a nearby dealership.
GM also advises Bolt owners to charge their vehicles more frequently. Further, GM says that users should steer clear of depleting their battery range below 70 miles.
And lastly, GM cautions Bolt owners to park their vehicles outside and to not charge vehicles indoors overnight.
How to contact Chevy
If you’re a Bolt owner, you can either go to Chevy’s recall website above or call the Chevrolet EV Concierge at 1-833-EVCHEVY. The number is available Monday through Friday and from 8 a.m through Midnight, Eastern Time. On the weekends, the number is available from noon through 9 p.m, Eastern Time.