I had my malfunciton indicator light and IMA light come on the other day. I've got about 58K miles on it. Took it into a local dealer and they're telling me that I need a software update to the IMA and emmisons control. They tell me that these software updates are not covered under my honda care extended warranty since they're not replacing anything. I'm pretty sure that I had to get the updates back in '05/'06.
Has anyone seen this before. It is a bitter pill to swallow to pay $77 for a software upgrade. Especially with an extended warranty..
The current issue I'm having seems to be completly seperate from the '05 update. I've got the update codes on my work order. I still can't get over that they didn't take any thing on or off the car to fix. Simply plug in a computer in it's fixed. How does that warrant $77?!? My 10 year old laptop gets update for free!
The $77 may also include the initial charge to troubleshoot your problem. It was nice of them to troubleshoot your car for free, so be thankful for that. So maybe part of the $77 they want to charge you for the update may partially be to recoup some of the cost of not charging you the first time.
Also, sure it's a simple fix. And since you're not getting a tangible product from them, you feel like they're ripping you off by charging you for the update. However, the software is intellectual property. It's like getting medical advice from a doctor. Or, getting a massage. You're not receiving a physical item, but you're still getting a service. So yeah, I'd feel paying for an update is fair. Now, how much they're charging for it? Well, that does seem like a lot. $77 might be an hourly shop rate. However, since the fix is quick, they should at least charge you half that, if not less.
Pull out your Honda Care stuff and read through the fine print. See if it says anything about software updates being covered or not.
Also, you can try to get the dealer to call American Honda Motors to see if they'll pay the bill under "good will." Since the update seems to affect the hybrid components, which are supposed to be covered by the 8yr/80K mile warranty.
In fact, pull out your warranty book (should be included with all the other books that were in the glovebox when you bought the car) and see just what's covered in the 8yr/80K mile warranty and see if it mentions software updates.
If this is an emissions update you have at least to 80000mi or if in California 100000 mi a manufacturers warrenty. Check your owners manual! We bought our '05 new and there has only been one recall(fuel pump connection) and no software updates!
OK.. here's the deal. First off $77 is about the going rate to perform this service.
I don't buy the 'intellectual property' either, but I do feel the charge for this service is justified. Why? Because the equipment they have to purchase to perform these updates cost $50,000 and sometimes more! Businesses are entitled to make money (and obviously wouldn't be in business if they didn't), and considering that they are practically the only source to have this done at this point, I feel they are 100% entitled for charging this fee (and actually surprised that they don't charge more!)
As parts wear and become more dependent on electronics and computers, sometimes they can cause a reading that goes beyond programmed parameters and set a fault code. Over time, the engineers get to see what is 'actually' happening, versus what they 'thought' would happen while designing the car, and a lot of the time realize that a part they would have previously thought to be bad, actually has a lot more life left in it. The computer update changes these parameters to reflect this extra knowledge.
Basically, the updates tell the computer "Really, that part isn't bad yet... let's let it go awhile longer before we condemn it completely".
Also in some instances, such as this one, the update was designed to help protect the system from third-party diagnostic equipment. When your computer was originally programmed, there was no one else that could interface with this system besides Honda. Since then, many companies have developed their own scanners and diagnostic equipment, and Honda found a problem in the way that some of these 'do their thing' that could damage your expensive components, and the update is to prevent this from happening.
I tend to get a bit frustrated that automotive manufacturers seem to have taken the 'microsoft' approach to this kind of thing... it almost seems as if they push out the programming too fast, and then have to release updates to fix things that should have been discovered in the design stages (Just like Microsoft has to constantly update Windows because of programming flaws that should have been fixed in the first place)... BUT you have to keep in mind that during design, everything is based on theory. It is often not until many cars are already on the road in which the engineers can anticipate certain scenarios, and as these happen, then they can issue updates accordingly.
I'm sorry that you car is out of warranty, but no matter how well a car is designed and built, they don't run perfect forever, and the manufacturers can't fix these for free forever, because if they did they would either go out of business, or no one would be able to afford their products.
You have to draw the line somewhere...
One gallon of gas - $3.49
One used four wheel drive SUV that gets 30+ Miles Per Gallon - $15,999
Purchasing it used for $5000 UNDER bluebook because the dealership did not realize it was a hybrid - PRICELESS
I just had mine updated. My dealer didn't charge me for it. I think because I had it there for some other work.
So maybe you should try the same thing. The next time you're in for an oil change/tire rotation/tranny flush, ask them if they'll perform the TSB at no charge?
Also, I do see in the TSB that it says to charge a flat rate time of 0.3 hours for this work. It also goes on to say this work may be eligible for "goodwill consideration" from the District Parts and Service Manager or Zone Office. You can always ask if they'll request it.
Busbar 3/36 3/50
Bypass Contactor 3/36 3/50
Bypass Resistor 3/36 3/50
High Voltage Contactor 3/36 3/50
Battery Current Sensor 3/36 3/50
Motor Rotor Position Sensor 3/36 3/50
Motor Current Sensor 3/36 3/50
Motor Power Cable 3/36
High Voltage Motor Power Inverter 3/36 3/50
Intelligent Power Unit Air Duct and Fan 3/36 3/50
Power Control Unit Air Duct 3/36 3/50
Motor Power Inverter Module Fan 3/36 3/50
that are used in conjunction with the items in
this list are covered. Some examples are: clamps, brackets, piping,
nuts, bolts, fasteners, switches, sensors, solenoids, wires, harnesses,
connectors, seals, and gaskets.
1 Fuel filter replacement and fuel tank flushing are covered when
contamination results from a defect in material or workmanship.
2 Covered up to the first required replacement only; see the
maintenance schedule in the Owner’s Manual.