HCH I-Specific Discussions Model Years 20032005

Failed IMA Battery Owners!

  #11  
Old 08-02-2008, 02:36 AM
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

Yes, let's band together! I'll be constructing an informative letter to Honda when I come back next week. It seems some people are receiving help post-warranty. Good luck, I'm in hot Miami!!!
 
  #12  
Old 10-03-2008, 05:08 PM
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

I am reporting back to the group that with my 2003 HCH with 122,000 miles, I tried a second time to get Honda to contribute to my IMA battery. It was noted to have corrosion, and I drove with my IMA light on for a couple months. At first they said they couldn't help, and when I called back in a couple weeks (just to make sure!) they talked to my dealer, and changed their mind, and only made me pay $250 toward the battery. I hope that doesn't upset anyone that had to pay the full price! I wanted to get my story out there, because I want you guys to know that Honda DOES sometime help us out. I think that would be unheard of with an American car company, but I'm not sure.
 
  #13  
Old 10-03-2008, 07:36 PM
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

Persistence payed off, good going. It is good to see a car company help for a change. Might be a good time to up-grade, while the car is in good condition? Seems these older HCH have some built in problems! Cats for one.Only my observation, H
 
  #14  
Old 10-04-2008, 01:31 AM
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

Originally Posted by rxhybrid View Post
Here are my thoughts.

#1 Manual transmission IMA is driven harder for better acceleration and better gas milage. If you notice, you get a couple of more HP from the manual transmission HCH than the Automatic.

#2 Batteries like the same temperatures we like. Overheating the batteries can cause them to go bad quicker. There is a lot of time and money spent by the auto companies on battery pack thermal management. I think that AC use saves battery packs.

I came to these conclusions trolling around the Honda Insight chat rooms. It seemed when a battery pack went bad, the owner of the car had manual transmission and did not use AC. You really could get some great gas milage with the manual transmissions, but they were hell on batteries. This is why Honda no longer offers a MT in the Civic Hybrid.

Ford (I own a Mercury Mariner Hybrid) has deticated AC for the battery pack. I have heard their testing shows the battery packs last a really long time with the deticated AC in the battery compartment.

Wish I could get more owners to come forward, but hopefully this means there are not many failed battery packs.

Rick
Ford designed their hybrid battery pack with the AC and Heating system--that is correct it has an automatic heating and cooling system specifically for the hybrid battery and this system has it's own radiator--in an attempt to minimize if not prevent any hybrid battery problems due to temperature regulation. Ford was aware that the GM EV1 had some issues with this. The other item not mentioned in this post deals with the hybrid battery state of charge. In other words--how far does the system let the hybrid battery charge up and discharge. Ford's system is very conservative with the 40% discharge and 60% charge values. I could be mistaken but I believe Honda's hybrid battery has a 40-80% state of charge range. The larger range can provide more electric assistance and thus improve mileage but at the expense of durability. A battery repeatively fully charged and discharged does not last as long as one that stays in the middle. Think cell phone batteries and how long they last. As for the corrosion issue, Ford issued a recall in Aug/Sept 2007 to deal with this potential problem.
 
  #15  
Old 10-05-2008, 04:24 AM
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

One aspect of the failed battery issue I have not seen discussed is just what constitutes a "failed" battery. I know, it is failed when the little light comes on, but what does it actually mean in terms of remaining capacity (% of original capacity) and the nature of the failure.

The on board computer that makes the call is presumably sensing and evaluating battery related performance data and then "deciding" when the warning light goes on. What data is being evaluated? Is it simply its capacity to store a given amount of energy, or does it also sense the presence of bad cells, temperature fluctuations outside the norm, or other potentially catistrophic battery problems?

The reason I ask is that there may be factors other than simple aging and weakening of the battery pack that can trip the CEL. Also, when the light comes on for a "weak" battery, what does that mean? Is it at 50% of original strength, 70%, 25%?

I have rechargeable flashlight batteries that are clearly not working as well as they did when new, but they still work fine, only for shorter periods of time. In our HCH's it is Honda, through it's on board programing, is telling us when to replace the pack by turning on a warning light, but is there any harm in deciding to continue to use a "weak" battery pack longer. The only downside that comes to mind is that, if the warning light is always lit, we wouldn't know if a second problem pops up unless we have our own OBD reader.
 
  #16  
Old 10-05-2008, 08:07 AM
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

If you find Bob Wison's research and post's on this site, you will realize the individual hybrid battery cells are quite robust. He is quoted as saying something like "lasting three lifetimes" of the vehicle. That said, one needs to revisit how Honda programs usage of their hybrid batteries and thermal regulation. A rechargeable flashlight like a cell phone allows one to "fully" recharge and discharge it's capacity. Thus it wears out or as previously stated "holds a charge for a lessen amount of time". If I remember correctly, Wilson's data indicates the individual "Toyota" 2nd generation hybrid battery cells do not display any significant loss of "charge-discharge" capacities after 150,000 miles. The question becomes, does Honda program useage of their hybrid batteries differently from other vehicles? Or, what is the difference between Honda and others?
 
  #17  
Old 11-02-2008, 10:10 AM
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

CVT
Use a/c nearly all year round
We live in the San Bernardino Mountains where we get snow in the winter. Our home is a mile above sea level. The car is used for commuting or long drives. The first 3 years the car went to Orange County twice a week (180 round trip) and North San Diego County 1-2 a week (120 round trip). Since those trips stopped the car has been driven to Redlands 5 days a week (70 round trip). Yesterday in Redlands it was 80 degrees and summer temps are in the high 90's.
 
  #18  
Old 11-12-2008, 12:17 PM
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

Originally Posted by rxhybrid View Post
Hi,

I have a couple of questions for owners of 2003 through 2005 HCH who have had their IMA batteries fail.

1. CVT or Manual.

2. Did you use air conditioning in the summer?

I have a couple of thoughts about HCH battery failure.

Thank You.

Rick
I have the ultimate in IMA failure. My Civic 2003 hybrid is at the Honda dealership right now with a IMA battery failure. It has 82,000 miles and has been in the shop twice for the IMA light going on. The dealership is trying to work something out with the company- but I have to wait and see. How do you like that?! 2,000 stinking miles over! Oh, I live in San Antonio, Texas- sweltering summers and constant AC use. I have an automatic. I read in California the IMA warrenties were extended because heat has been shown to limit the life of the battery. Hello! Does it not get as hot in Texas as it does in California?
 
  #19  
Old 11-12-2008, 12:29 PM
rkr
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

You should be covered on two fronts:

1) They extended the warranty on hybrid components to 100,000 (I'm in a non-CA state). Call Honda if your dealership disagrees -- my dealership is the one that told me about it.

2) There was a class action suit against Honda about the odometer being off. Every warranty is extended by 5 or 10% I can't remember - I think 10%. I know it applies to my 2003 HCH. You didn't have to opt-in to get this benefit-- you could Google for more info.
 
  #20  
Old 11-12-2008, 04:01 PM
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Default Re: Failed IMA Battery Owners!

Yes, the 2003 have a warranty extension due to a lawsuit regarding the odometer. Your 82K should still be covered as it is on 2.5% over 80K. The thing about the 2003's in California is that in order to get them certified for use in carpool lanes (without passengers) the state required 150K warranty for the battery and emissions components. When our catalytic went out the dealer wanted us to pay for it and we stood firm about the warranty and they finally checked with corporate and authorized the repair.
 

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