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HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

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HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

  #1  
Old 08-08-2015, 09:00 PM
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Default HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

I own a HCH 2006, has a little over 45K miles on it (yes, that's right, only 45K miles on a nearly 10 year old car!) and have been trying to handle the smog testing required to receive the stickers and registration renewal card here in SoCal, but even after 500+ highway miles driving in the middle of the night to avoid traffic the catalyst monitor is still not ready. I'm getting 28MPG, my battery goes up and down so much it might as well be constant, and yet there are no check IMA or Engine lights. I've been reading about the software updates that have been done to my car at the dealership in my quest to find out what to do about the smog readiness issue, and it's been enlightening to say the least - not to mention infuriating. While I've paid the registration renewal fee to avoid penalties, if I can't resolve the smog test problem soon then it's only a matter of time until I'm pulled over for expired tags and have the joy of going to traffic court to add to my problems.

At this point, if I hear yet again that I just need to keep driving it until the catalyst is ready I'm going to throw a stapler at the person who says it. I'm taking it to the dealership Monday to ask why it's getting 28MPG when I've religiously maintained it with them and only them - Norm Reeves Honda in the Cerritos Auto Center. The up and down charge level on the battery dash indicator will be brought up as well - they did replace the IMA several years ago and that was under warranty so I didn't have to pay but I may not be so lucky this time around but I'll have to see how it plays out. Anyone have suggestions on this as far as what the problems may be, what Honda can be pressed into covering the cost for, etc?
 
  #2  
Old 08-08-2015, 11:56 PM
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Default Re: HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

The SoC gauge behavior is due to a severely imbalanced IMA battery. Your poor mileage is typical of multiple forced recalibrations. They are not likely to replace it again until you get an IMA light.

I can't say for sure, but the frequent recalibrations may interfere with the car's ability to complete the catalyst test and give DTC ready. You likely need to address your severely deteriorated iMA battery before anything else.

I've put 1000 miles on a 2001 Oldsmobile, and it's both Evap and Cat not ready. Making me crazy.
 
  #3  
Old 08-09-2015, 12:27 AM
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Default Re: HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

It hasn't had an IMA light since they last replaced the battery - I think it was 2009 when they did that. And the crazy thing is when I went in for regular maintenance in June 2015 they supposedly checked all of that - both 12V and Ima batteries, etc. How can they 'miss' these things!?
 
  #4  
Old 08-09-2015, 12:53 AM
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Default Re: HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

12V can go bad at any time. IMHO, anything over 2 years is on borrowed time.

IMA lights are only thrown when certain criteria are met. Not sure what they are, but I've had 5+ recals per day, and the car never threw an IMA light.

Having so few miles on your car is actually bad. You likely subject your pack sitting for days at a time.

If it's still under warranty, take it for drives in hills with the A/C on 'Lo" and max fan. Then drive straight to the dealer when you get the light.

Good luck,

Steve
 
  #5  
Old 08-09-2015, 03:30 AM
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Default Re: HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

I'm not in an area of SoCal that has a whole lot of hills to drive on. My job is extremely local so between that and errands around town I take short trips daily - along with all this extra driving of 500+ miles thus far that is. But I'm pretty sure I'm still under warranty, the dealership is going to get an earful about all this ridiculousness, regardless.
 
  #6  
Old 08-09-2015, 09:07 AM
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Default Re: HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

The settlement for the '06 was 9 year/92k miles, so you might be right up against it.

Short trips or extended sitting are pretty much the worst scenarios for these cars. I'm not surprised you already had one replaced.

Be prepared for a complete lack of support until you get an IMA light. Replacement frequency was so high, they typically draw a very deep line in the sand and don't cross it.

If you find the dealer will give you no resolution, I am HIGHLY confident that you will benefit from Grid Charging/Discharging. Short trips/sitting exacerbate pack imbalance, and grid charging/discharging will help restore it and likely give a couple of years of acceptable performance.
 
  #7  
Old 08-10-2015, 08:43 PM
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Default Re: HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

The dealership is providing a rental and agreed that anything IMA related will be covered under warranty - so now my biggest worry is getting the car to pass the smog test because it needs that for the renewal of registration to go through and my tags mailed to me. I paid the registration fees but here in California there are more than a fair share of jerk cops/CHP/sheriff to pull people over. I'm basically telling the service dept. that it's not leaving there unless everything is set for a smog test, whether it takes them having to use a dynamometer or not. I know it sounds *****y, but how else am I supposed to get whatever needs to be done, done - and it's going to be quite a while before I can afford a brand new vehicle. I've been going to the same dealership since my first car in the late 90'.
 
  #8  
Old 08-10-2015, 09:05 PM
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Default Re: HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

I'm going to stick with my original assertion. You need a new battery to address your excessive recalibrations. If they cover that for you without an IMA light, you have a golden dealer there as it's very rare to get a dealer to cover it without an IMA light.

Good luck!

Steve
 
  #9  
Old 08-13-2015, 11:44 PM
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Default Re: HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

I will finally be getting my car back from the dealership tomorrow (they said I can pick it up any time after 12pm) with a new IMA put in that they had to order and install - I'm assuming that because it's a warranty covered service they worked it in around the customers who brought their cars for servicing for which they paid both labor and parts to have done. Though the light wasn't on at the time I dropped my car off, when I called the tech that evening to ask where things stood he told me that they had determined the IMA was faulty and were replacing it under warranty -of course having the finish time moved back twice would have been more irritating if not for the car rental so there's that. At least I can look forward to much better than the 28mpg I was getting following the repair!
 
  #10  
Old 08-14-2015, 05:55 AM
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Default Re: HCH 2006 MPG, Smog not ready, and more!

Thank you for the follow-up.

Concerning the repair timing, it takes me all of 20 minutes to swap a pack from start to finish, so I doubt the service department had much issue with scheduling.

You have received atypical and astoundingly good service from a dealer. IMHO, you should consider yourself extremely lucky.

The Honda replacement packs are *****. Failure rates of 09 and 10 models are 30%+ as of 2013:

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/n...orse/index.htm

Panasonic doesn't make the cells anymore, and the replacements are inferior. You likely have a pack containing non-Panasonic cells.

IIRC, packs replaced under warranted only for the original warranty period. The moment you observe recalibrations (the rapid up and down behavior of the SoC gauge), I recommend you pursue grid charging and discharging. If you catch them early, the chances of getting 2+ years of additional life out of them improves.

Good luck,

Steve
 

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