KIYC: Owners of Chevy Bolt vehicles frustrated due to battery problems. Here’s what to do.
It was America's second most popular electric vehicle, but Chevy Bolt owners have been plagued with battery problems -- and many are having to wait to get them replaced.
“I wanted to do an electric car for a long time, and the Bolt really fit the bill,” says Ari Schneiderman.
Schneiderman was thrilled with his Chevy Bolt. Until last year, when – like every other Bolt owner in the country -- he got a recall notice. It said the batteries could pose a risk of fire, but parts to repair the vehicle were not currently available.
“They told you ‘OK, don't park the car indoors, don't charge the car indoors, which is a problem because my charger's in the garage. I tried to reach out to GM. And they were flooded,” says Schneiderman.
So, Schneiderman put a call into consumer attorney Bob Silverman.
“Clients with 19s, 20s and 21s aren't getting battery packs replaced, and they're not getting loaners to use,” says Silverman. “So, they're stuck with a car that gets no range because they can't charge it properly.”
Silverman filed a complaint with GM under the New Jersey Lemon Law, and the carmaker agreed to buy back the car.
“General Motors really impressed me with the way they handled everything. They really did try,” says Schneiderman
A GM spokesperson says, “We have replacement (batteries) available to execute the recall." He says the company “prioritize(s) recall repairs based on vehicle build dates. For example, customers who have 20-22 (vehicles) are still waiting for notification their vehicle(s) can be repaired."
If you have a problem with a Chevy Bolt or any other new car, New York, New Jersey and Connecticut all have lemon laws, which kick in if the car has repeated problems that can't be fixed.
For New York, cars are covered for the first two years or 18,000 miles. In New Jersey and Connecticut, protection lasts even longer: for two years or 24,000 miles.
Even if your car is out of warranty, there could still be hope. A federal law called the Magnusson Moss Warranty Act covers you if the problem began under warranty, even if the warranty is now expired.
If you have a consumer story that needs to be investigated, you can get Kane in Your Corner by calling 732-738-KANE, or emailing KaneInYourCorner@news12.com.