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I haven't had my 12v battery die yet, but I really think Volvo has a bug with how they maintain the charge of it. Remember, I have attached a voltage logger to my 12v battery. The 12v battery has been intermittently draining downward right after HV charging has completed AND while the EVSE cable is still plugged in. As soon as I unplug the cable, the draining stops.

I have attached a screenshot showing several days worth of data. The 4 areas circled in RED are an example of the voltage dropping after HV charging has completed. The ripple period is close to every 12 minutes where the car does something causing a power spike (dip in voltage). Eventually, when it dips below 12v, it automatically engages the LV charging circuit soon afterwards.
The obvious (though not necessarily correct) reason would be that it's continuously polling the charging timer settings to see whether or not it should start or stop the charging process. And that would involve the TCAM, at least indirectly.
 

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The obvious (though not necessarily correct) reason would be that it's continuously polling the charging timer settings to see whether or not it should start or stop the charging process. And that would involve the TCAM, at least indirectly.
My issues with four separate episodes of a dead battery are well documented. The last episode resulted in seven days at the dealership and continuous telemetry readings sent to Volvo Tech support. I was told that the car would intermittently turn itself on and look for an internet signal or software upgrade, even when the car was off and locked. This caused a drain on the battery. The battery does not recharge unless the vehicle is being driven. The end result, the car looks for the signal till the battery is dead. It does take awhile, typically this occurs when the car is sitting for 24 hours.

They could provide no solution or fix. They did recommend using a battery maintainer.

This diagnosis was made after:
Fixing a kinked wire going to the TCAM
Replacing the TCAM
Replacing the Sharkfin antenna
Upgrading all software and reinstalling the TCAM firmware.
 

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2021 XC40 Recharge
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The battery does not recharge unless the vehicle is being driven.
I have witnessed that my car will indeed re-charge when the car is locked, and a level 2 charging cable had already been plugged in. The issue is that it seems to only check for a low voltage reading every ~12 hours or so. If the 12v battery happens to discharge too low between those checks, I guess that's when a dead battery condition will occur. But, as I stated in an earlier post, I don't want to leave the charging cable plugged in because of the unnecessary extra battery stress that it causes.
 

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What do you mean by "Extra Battery Stress" if the charging cable is plugged in?
Extra stress on the 12v AGM battery. It isn't healthy for AGM batteries to be kept at less than 50% SoC for an extended period of time. As can be seen in the graphs of my earlier post, the voltage reading goes below 12v or less than 25% SoC:
Product Font Rectangle Material property Parallel

 

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Just had this happen again. Came out to get in car and a bunch of warning messages pop up and something about 12v battery being critically low. Hear some contactors clicking and then the car was dead. Pulled off 3 plastic panels under the hood to get access to the battery, it measured less than 2V. Was able to jumpstart with a motorcycle battery and has been fine for the last 24 hours. Taking it to the dealer Friday to have it checked out.

It's a 2021 running 1.7. No app connected and the main battery was at 40% when it died. Temperature where parked around 10F. Last time this happened was unable to jumpstart.
Just had this happen again but on 1.8.1 software this time with temperatures around 20-35F. I think this is the third time now. Was sitting for 2 days at 50% main battery charge level. Had to use physical key to get in. Pulled all the plastic panels and measured 12v battery at 3.5v. Attempted to jumpstart with my motorcycle battery again but instead of waking up and charging the 12v system it was just draining the little battery. Will try trickle charging or just towing it in.
 

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Just had this happen again but on 1.8.1 software this time with temperatures around 20-35F. I think this is the third time now. Was sitting for 2 days at 50% main battery charge level. Had to use physical key to get in. Pulled all the plastic panels and measured 12v battery at 3.5v. Attempted to jumpstart with my motorcycle battery again but instead of waking up and charging the 12v system it was just draining the little battery. Will try trickle charging or just towing it in.
Did you see the person whose service department built in a trickle charger for the 12 volt to keep it working while volvo works out why there is a drain on some batteries.
 

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I have witnessed that my car will indeed re-charge when the car is locked, and a level 2 charging cable had already been plugged in. The issue is that it seems to only check for a low voltage reading every ~12 hours or so. If the 12v battery happens to discharge too low between those checks, I guess that's when a dead battery condition will occur. But, as I stated in an earlier post, I don't want to leave the charging cable plugged in because of the unnecessary extra battery stress that it causes.
I can't deny what you said is true. I can only state that my battery completely discharged twice while plugged in to the charger for over 12 hours.

The head of service told me that the car battery only charges while being driven...thus the need for a trickle charger.

His explanation was that a system turns itself on and drains the battery even if plugged in. Again, this might not be correct.

But, as has been proven before, there is misinformation out there. All I can confirm and relate is my direct experience.
 

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Just had a call with the dealer's service department. I missed the beginning of the conversation (my wife took the call, and I joined on speaker), but the dealer apparently now says that the main battery was NOT fully discharged, and that the issues were entirely due to a discharged 12v battery. As far as I know, they did not discover any fault in the 12v charging system.

The dealer then went into "blame-the-driver" mode. She told us that Volvos must be driven 15-30 miles per day to maintain the 12v battery's charge. If we can't commit to driving 15-30 miles 365 days a year, we should purchase a trickle charger, and once a week we should pop all of the plastic panels under the frunk to expose the 12v battery and trickle charge the 12v overnight. She told us that this was an issue with ICE Volvos as well- they drain the 12v battery because of "all the technology" and thus must be driven 15-30 miles a day.

I asked her if this recommendation was documented in a service bulletin from Volvo, or if this was just her opinion. She told me that this recommendation is "in the owner's manual." Of course, it is not.

The owner's manual does say this about the 12v:

Under normal conditions, the 12V battery is charged at the same time as the car is charged, as well as via current transmission from the high voltage battery when the car is not connected for charging.

Seems to suggest that if the main battery has been charged a high level, the 12v should also have been charged while the main battery was charging, no? Not clear exactly what the second part means ("...as well as via current transmission..."), but it certainly doesn't state that the car needs to be driven to charge the 12v. Does anyone know the conditions under which the 12v charges? Definitely during charging... but also while driving? While parked and not charging?

It would be insane if a normally-functioning 12v car battery could discharge completely in 36 hours, even if it were not trickle-charging from the main battery while parked.

The owner's manual also has recommendations for long-term storage, which they consider to be periods of longer than a month... which suggests that 36 hours should be fine!

At the very least, we seem to have some problem with the 12v charging system, though I don't think there's any way of knowing whether this was a hardware or a software problem... and thus hard to know if it's fixed!
Oh my gosh, this is both an insane reccomendation and an absolutley uninformed reccomendation. Reading through the whole thread to comment at the end, but good lord I had to state how ludicrous the idea is that you have to keep any brand new car on a trickle charge daily.
 

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Just had this happen again but on 1.8.1 software this time with temperatures around 20-35F. I think this is the third time now. Was sitting for 2 days at 50% main battery charge level. Had to use physical key to get in. Pulled all the plastic panels and measured 12v battery at 3.5v. Attempted to jumpstart with my motorcycle battery again but instead of waking up and charging the 12v system it was just draining the little battery. Will try trickle charging or just towing it in.
Decided to tow it in so they could see for themselves the state of the 12v battery and what it is doing. Tow truck driver immediately decided he needed it in neutral and jumpstarted it and the 12v charging system came back to life and started charging the 12v battery again. So, I guess by the time it gets to the dealer the 12v battery might be full again and they'll see nothing wrong with it like last time.

My personal theory is that, for whatever reason, the 12vcharging system occasionally will wait too long top-up up the battery such that the voltage is too low to power the relay to connect the main battery to the system. My little baby motorcycle battery wasn't strong enough to do it because it's been sitting all winter without a charge, and I used it to jumpstart last time. When I hooked it up, I could hear some contactors clicking but they were doing it rapidly like it wasn't strong enough to keep them closed.
 

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Decided to tow it in so they could see for themselves the state of the 12v battery and what it is doing. Tow truck driver immediately decided he needed it in neutral and jumpstarted it and the 12v charging system came back to life and started charging the 12v battery again. So, I guess by the time it gets to the dealer the 12v battery might be full again and they'll see nothing wrong with it like last time.

My personal theory is that, for whatever reason, the 12vcharging system occasionally will wait too long top-up up the battery such that the voltage is too low to power the relay to connect the main battery to the system. My little baby motorcycle battery wasn't strong enough to do it because it's been sitting all winter without a charge, and I used it to jumpstart last time. When I hooked it up, I could hear some contactors clicking but they were doing it rapidly like it wasn't strong enough to keep them closed.
Update: Got it back. They just checked the 12v battery, charged it up and installed 2.0 software. Basically, they don't know why it happened (again). Maybe someday the software will prevent the 12v battery from discharging for no reason...
 

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Update: Got it back. They just checked the 12v battery, charged it up and installed 2.0 software. Basically, they don't know why it happened (again). Maybe someday the software will prevent the 12v battery from discharging for no reason...
Did you show them the trickle charge setup one user on here has?
 

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Did you show them the trickle charge setup one user on here has?
No. I'm not going to bother trying to solve it myself until the warranty runs out. The drain has happened sitting for as little time as 2 days. I'm not gonna plug in a battery tender every day for something that should just work. I'll just have it towed in till they fix it, so it at least gets logged into some Volvo issue tracker. I'm pretty confidant it's a software issue they will eventually solve.
 

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No. I'm not going to bother trying to solve it myself until the warranty runs out. The drain has happened sitting for as little time as 2 days. I'm not gonna plug in a battery tender every day for something that should just work. I'll just have it towed in till they fix it, so it at least gets logged into some Volvo issue tracker. I'm pretty confidant it's a software issue they will eventually solve.
The answer to this is a lemon law claim unless you’re OK with dealing with this endlessly while Volvo gets their **** together. Dealt with LTE/GPS loss via TCAM and a dead 12v three separate times while the primary battery was full, plugged in and charging on my XC60. Wound up with a nice 5 figure settlement. DON’T let them keep releasing beta test-level bullshit on us. They’ve had nearly a year to fix these issues and yet they still haven’t isolated it or try to play dumb.
 

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I have the identical problem as Bushikatagi. I couldn't deal with an unreliable vehicle. Plus, towing the car in my area typically takes a minimum of 4-6 hours and once took over night. And, recurrently flat bed towing a car with locked wheels posses a risk of damage. The last time, the tow truck destroyed the undersurface protective shield.

I noted one person described that they towed his Recharge using the tow hook. That is a terrible way to pull the car. It is off center and pulls only one side of the car. I have seen the tow operator try to raise the car by putting a jack under one of the suspension struts. When it started to deform, I saw what was going on and got him to stop.

Because this issue is clearly one that is not fully understood, Volvo USA just offered me a full refund including purchase price, title, registration and all delivery fees. I am 100% reimbursed. However, this doesn't fix the fact that my car is not unique. Volvo has cobbled together an electric car that has blinding acceleration, great seats, and a luxury interior, but electronics that are not sufficiently integrated to allow for predictable function.

I realize Tesla, Mustang, Jaguar and others have had electronic glitches. But I am not familiar with the complete lack of corporate response and recognition of this issue.
Volvo has not released any response indicating they are aware of the problem and are at hard work to fix and compensate the owners for this issue. The fixes are piece meal shark fin patches, bent wire replacments and software updates. And not one of the software updates has a release note that states, "this will fix the LTE/GPS and TCAM issues that have been plaguing the owners!"

I do note that Volvo has a historically low average reliability rating with expensive fixes after warranty service has expired. I was hoping that the new owners of the company would resolve the quality issues. These problems are not universal, but they are not an abberation.

Volvo’s determination to adopt new technology soon after launch can also be considered a problem. Everyone wants the newest items out there, but sometimes this is their downfall. New doesn’t always mean reliable. However, the reverse can also be found to be true, and if you don’t update your software you can also discover things stop working just when you need them.

 

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Well, this was a bit of a shock!

Our XC40 recharge is now sitting in the driveway, 100% dead and refusing to charge.

We have been having what I thought were minor issues- loss of LTE, loss of control of charging speed and limits. On Monday night we drove the car and parked in the driveway. We decided not to plug in because we had over 80% charge.

This morning I sat in the driver’s seat, and nothing turned on. No climate, no infotainment, no lights, nothing. Fob would not activate door locks. I plugged into our our L1 charging cable and got zero response. The charging light to the left of the connector on the car is not illuminated. The LED ring on the charging cable is lit white to show that it is plugged in, but not blinking as it should be if the vehicle is charging.

We have had the vehicle for just over a month. Volvo roadside assistance is en route. This is truly the nightmare scenario that technophobes who hate electric cars fear the most!!
You are not alone! Same here. The dealer is working on our XC40 but have not been able to find the fault. A dead brick on our driveway. We were on vacations for 12 days and returned to find a rather unpleasant dead car. Only 2300 miles, very disappointing. Let us keep in touch and see what the dealers find?
 

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I have the identical problem as Bushikatagi. I couldn't deal with an unreliable vehicle. Plus, towing the car in my area typically takes a minimum of 4-6 hours and once took over night. And, recurrently flat bed towing a car with locked wheels posses a risk of damage. The last time, the tow truck destroyed the undersurface protective shield.

I noted one person described that they towed his Recharge using the tow hook. That is a terrible way to pull the car. It is off center and pulls only one side of the car. I have seen the tow operator try to raise the car by putting a jack under one of the suspension struts. When it started to deform, I saw what was going on and got him to stop.

Because this issue is clearly one that is not fully understood, Volvo USA just offered me a full refund including purchase price, title, registration and all delivery fees. I am 100% reimbursed. However, this doesn't fix the fact that my car is not unique. Volvo has cobbled together an electric car that has blinding acceleration, great seats, and a luxury interior, but electronics that are not sufficiently integrated to allow for predictable function.

I realize Tesla, Mustang, Jaguar and others have had electronic glitches. But I am not familiar with the complete lack of corporate response and recognition of this issue.
Volvo has not released any response indicating they are aware of the problem and are at hard work to fix and compensate the owners for this issue. The fixes are piece meal shark fin patches, bent wire replacments and software updates. And not one of the software updates has a release note that states, "this will fix the LTE/GPS and TCAM issues that have been plaguing the owners!"

I do note that Volvo has a historically low average reliability rating with expensive fixes after warranty service has expired. I was hoping that the new owners of the company would resolve the quality issues. These problems are not universal, but they are not an abberation.

Volvo’s determination to adopt new technology soon after launch can also be considered a problem. Everyone wants the newest items out there, but sometimes this is their downfall. New doesn’t always mean reliable. However, the reverse can also be found to be true, and if you don’t update your software you can also discover things stop working just when you need them.

Homer, how did you get your money back? I took delivery of an XC40 Recharge last year and it can’t defective. It will not take a charge. They gave me a new one after two months. Now the second died completely and the dealer didn’t know how to fix it. Please advice how I can deal with Volvo USA to get my money back. Thanks in advance.
 
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