I was under the same impression, but that is what the service manager told me. I was somewhat doubtful even then and asked him if he could confirm that lithium would work in my car. He went to the parts department and asked them to try and confirm that they would be using a new lithium battery. Someone from parts came into the manager's office a few minutes later and said that they had confirmed (I don't know how they confirmed) that it would be a lithium battery. The day I dropped off my HCHII to have the new battery installed I asked if I could see the battery and take some pictures and they said fine. I took a couple of pictures from different angles, but no where did it indicate lithium or NiMH. I did find the serial number and got a picture of that. It is possible that they were all making a colossal error in telling me that it is a lithium battery, but at this point I would tend to believe them.
One more thing. There was a sticker on the battery that showed:
IMA Battery Type PC2
From what I could see, the outer shell of the old and new batteries looked identical, but when I questioned the tech who installed the battery about it he said that they just made the outer shells look similar in order to fit in the same compartment. I couldn't see the entire battery when I took pictures, because it still had packing styrofoam and cardboard over parts of it and I didn't think that they would appreciate me taking it entirely apart on the floor of their parts department.
Well I do hope it is Lithium, but I don't think lithium pack is compatible with the HCH2 IMA system? I think those boys are confused with the 2012 model having a Lithium pack and feel the same pack will fit all! H
2012 pack is not the same size- they mentioned it's smaller and lighter.
So it is highly unlikely, though not impossible to make LiIon work in HCHII. Big enough battery will be less sensitive to exact charge profile, but still- I doubt they bothered
So, I picked up my car from the dealership yesterday evening and talked with their head mechanic (he was the one assigned to examine the car and IMA system). He was friendly enough, but he gave me a nice heaping helping of BS and some swill to wash it down with.
He told me a number of things and I didn’t try to challenge him too much, because I didn’t want to offend and I was able to glean some useful information out of him.
He told me that my battery’s current charge capacity is reading at 75%. This seems very low to me in light of the fact that this battery was installed only five months ago. When I pointed this out, he replied that this is common with all batteries. He claimed that the charge capacity falls off quickly when a battery is first put into use and then levels out. He also claimed that a change in temperature from 70 degrees to 80 degrees could affect the state of charge (SOC) by as much as 50%. The man was just talking through his hat. He really needs to check out the website http://batteryuniversity.com/. I highly recommend this site to anyone who wants to learn more about batteries in general. Whether the new battery is NiMH or lithium the data on this website refutes the head mechanic’s claim that a battery’s capacity decreases rapidly at first and then levels out. Quite the opposite is true. http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/battery_performance_as_a_function_of_cycling
Additionally, he told me that driving the car softly and only rarely stepping on the gas will lead to carbon buildup in the pistons. What do you guys think about this? There might be some truth to it. I do drive my HCH softly (my wife likes to compare me to a grandpa), but when I’m cruising on the freeway and going up a hill the RPMs get in the range of 3,500 to 4,000. He claimed that he could hear pinging from my engine when he stepped hard on the gas during his test drive and he attributed this to carbon buildup from my soft driving. Thoughts?
One interesting bit of information was how to manually get the HCHII to go into recalibration mode and he even gave me a print out of the instructions. Basically you get the engine warm, with the SOC indicator showing at least three bars. Accelerate to 37 mph and then release the accelerator and let the car decelerate for at least five seconds without depressing the brake pedal (i.e. let the car coast). The mechanic thought that I might have been inadvertently doing this and putting the car into its recalibration mode. There is a slight possibility that through shear dumb luck I could have done this accidentally once or twice, but highly unlikely to have happened so many times. Also, my driving habits haven’t changed or in other words I’m driving just the same way now as when the car wasn’t experiencing recals.
The mechanic told me that he recalibrated every part of the IMA system that he could, including some sensors on the engine and made sure that the software was up-to-date. He recommended that I continue to drive the car and let him know if I experience more recals. At the end of our conversation he said that he believes whatever is going on is not connected with the IMA system or battery. I tend to disagree with him, but I suppose we’ll find out in the near future.
I would greatly appreciate any thoughts or ideas about what might be causing the recals with a five month old battery.
Returning to the discussion of whether or not the dealership installed a new NiMH or a Li-Poly battery.
Does anyone know what the battery’s PC2 designation means? When I Googled “PC2 battery” and “PC2 IMA battery” the pages that popped up seemed to indicate that PC2 might be connected with lithium batteries.
I was looking over the pictures I took of my new battery before it was installed and found one of a sticker that says:
Serial NO. xxxxxxxxxxxx (I’m replacing my 12-digit serial number with “x”s)
Matsushita Electric Works, Ltd.
Made in Japan”
I am currently attempting to contact Panasonic Electric Works (formerly named Matsushita Electric Works --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panasonic_Electric_Works) to see if they can tell something more about my new battery.
A woman in the customer service department for their Electric Components Division (800-276-6289) tried to transfer me to someone in Chicago named Himal (847-637-4638). I left a message and hope he calls me back.
That Dealership is not really up to snuff when it comes to Hybrid technology from what you have told us. I never drive my HCH2 hard and have had no issues to date. Very good auto. I also have a 2006 Prius and it is a great auto as well. My wife uses the Prius! I really prefer the HCH2 as a driver. More sporty drive in my estimation. HCH2 does better on road trips. H
Himal from Panasonic contacted me back and informed me that the battery is definitely NiMH. I would love to know why both the service manager and the parts department people at that dealership thought that I was getting a lithium battery.
I agree that the HCHII drives great when the battery is functioning properly.
Got another recal yesterday. It looks like they will continue even after head mechanic recalibrated sensors. I suppose I should attempt to build or acquire a trickle charger soon.
Concerning the manual recalibration that I mentioned in an earlier post, the print out the mechanic gave me is titled, “2006 CIVIC HYBRID – Start Clutch Pressure Control Calibration Procedures.” It gives details about three different methods to put the IMA system into a recalibration. The first is using a dealership HDS. The second is similar and also uses the HDS, but is called “Calibration Procedure with SCS mode.” The third method is titled, “Calibration by Driving the Vehicle” and is the method I described in that earlier post. Maybe I’ll try scanning the two page document and attaching it to my next post.
Last edited by Mic123; 04-19-2012 at 10:38 PM.
You did the right thing. I did the software updates and so I never got an IMA -or- engine light. I just kept getting the backup starter and many many re-cals. I'm guessing many will be screwed because of no IMA/Engine light.
Same here. My car is up to date.
Unfortunately, it seems one of the updates de-tooths the hybrid system and leans very lightly on the battery. No more IMA lights, but constant recals and 12v starter use. And now, the car is a mere shadow of the car I bought and enjoyed for the first to years. Hardly uses IMA assist now. Can barely be called a hybrid any more.
I'm guessing some bean counter spreadsheet drone at Honda has calculated that HCH2 with deteriorated batteries with the Limping Firmware will just barely make it through the warranty.
My 2006 with almost 60k has been going to almost constant recals. Over the course of a 10 mile drive the SOC will fluctuate full to empty 2 or 3 times. I can have full charge showing when I turn the car off, and 30 minutes later when I turn it on, it will be at 2 bars.
I had the software updates a while ago. I have not seen an IMA or Check Engine light come on. I plan on mentioning the constant recals when I take the car in for normal service.