HCH II-Specific Discussions Model Years 2006-2011

12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

  #1  
Old 06-18-2018, 01:21 PM
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Arrow 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

We just got a used 08 civic hybrid, has quite a few miles on it, and has had a "New" Honda battery installed under warranty ~60k miles ago, once in a while, the 12v battery light will come on, IMA and anything else does not come on, but the IMA will not charge the system, and I am forced to do a compression start to get it to disappear, and work normally, ish.

The car will do the 8 bar to 2 bar, to 8 bar again after a few minutes, so I know it's out of wack, but I a wondering what the best course of action could be. Here in Canada, Honda is offering a great deal on the battery, for a low low cost of $5400 CAD (4100USD)+ 5h labor install, that comes with a wicked 30,000KM (18.6k miles) or 6 months, whatever comes first warranty!

I was looking at grid chargers, see if I could get a little more life out of it, before we either get a Bumblebee battery or just sell the car, as it has just under 200k miles on it, and not sure if it's worth the ~$3000USD for a new battery.

Now, there is the individual cell balancing, which takes forever, and is not really an option, and there are a bunch of grid chargers available online.

I've seen the Maxx-Volts chargers, as well as the Hybrid-Automotive chargers. The MV chargers are cheaper for the LM-1 model, but after a quick chat over ebay, I am not sure I would want to deal with MV in case of troubles as the replies were always suspiciously pushing how awesome their product is and how everybody else is just a cheap Chinese scam. the HA chargers seem interesting, but the price is absolutely bonkers for here ~600CAD (455USD + shipping (80CAD)).

I have seen a few links for DIY grid chargers, but for some reason they are all wildly different, and I am not sure what to trust. I am quite capable of soldering, and doing electronics work safely, but am a hobbyist that follows instructions and not an engineer, so I can't say what is safe and what isin't, just that I can follow instructions. So if anybody has a link for me it would be greatly appreciated.

But if there is something else I can do, please let me know. I've been searching these forums, as well as similar forums, and it seems to point that the battery is on it's way out and will be throwing IMA codes any time now.


Things I have tried:

- Test 12v charging system / start voltage (will need to confirm numbers as I am going off memory)
- 14.2v with the car on with no load
- Car starts with ~12.9v then jumps back to 14.2 nominal
- Unplug battery for ~5 minutes, charge IMA, repeat 3 times (IMA Calibration?)
- Trickle charge the 12v battery (3 years old)
- Low gear charge
- 3k rpm charge (gas waste charge)

The 12v battery will come back after a bit, usually after a short distance drive and it wasn't at 8 bars.

Hopefully I provided enough detail to diagnose the issue somewhat...

Cheers
 
  #2  
Old 06-18-2018, 05:48 PM
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Default Re: 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

Sounds like you need to replace your 12V battery. 3 years old is ancient.

I prefer a 51R to the sh!te 151R. You'll have to toss the shrouds, but it will fit.

What's a low gear charge?
 
  #3  
Old 06-18-2018, 07:13 PM
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Default Re: 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

Originally Posted by S Keith View Post
Sounds like you need to replace your 12V battery. 3 years old is ancient.

I prefer a 51R to the sh!te 151R. You'll have to toss the shrouds, but it will fit.

What's a low gear charge?
This is good to know, I will get a new battery asap, hopefully I can get one from either Costco or a local shop.

As for the low gear charge, it's basically what I call it when I put it in L, it charges it up from 2 to 8 bars in ~2 minutes or so.

I should also note, that the climate here is pretty wild at times, 30c with 100% humidity in the summer, and -30c in the winter, so I'm sure this does a number on these batteries.

Cheers
 
  #4  
Old 06-18-2018, 07:22 PM
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Default Re: 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

51R are pretty common. Walmart carries them here in the states.

I've never heard of an "L" charge. When your at 2 bars, you're in a recalibration, and the car force-charges always. You would likely get better results in "P".

30 sounds delightful. It was 39 today, and we're in a bit of a cold spell.

Cold temps are great for nickel. They don't like being charged at high current under 10C, but the car protects them from this. Plus, since the only source of heat is the ICE, it's going to run the ICE almost all the time anyway. The car will "empty" the HV battery with assist to heat the battery (they don't mind discharging at low temp), and then it eventually comes up above 10C as the interior warms permitting charging and normal use. Nickel gets really happy around 35C.
 
  #5  
Old 06-19-2018, 05:58 AM
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Default Re: 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

This is good to know, I'll throw in a 51R, I found one at a local store for ~150 after tax with a 20$ core, also found a 700$ battery pack from a pulled 08 HCH, do you think getting a battery pack for 700$ (4200$ from bumblebee for new) worth the risk? I'd likely do a stick per stick cycle to find the best, and simply build one pack out of both hers and the donor pack.
 
  #6  
Old 06-19-2018, 06:21 AM
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Default Re: 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

Salvage yard packs are hit or miss. US$2300 get you a 3 year warranty. It takes weeks to properly test a battery, and there are no guarantees that you won't be doing it again a few months later.

I guess it comes down to do you want a trouble free battery for 3+ years, or do you want a project?
 
  #7  
Old 06-19-2018, 06:27 AM
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Default Re: 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

Originally Posted by S Keith View Post
Salvage yard packs are hit or miss. US$2300 get you a 3 year warranty. It takes weeks to properly test a battery, and there are no guarantees that you won't be doing it again a few months later.

I guess it comes down to do you want a trouble free battery for 3+ years, or do you want a project?
The bumblebee battery is very interesting, but it's insanely expensive for shipping to Canada, it's 500USD shipping, and a 500$ core, not to mention border fees for freight which would be around 300CAD or so. I'd likely drive to a border town and do the swap in the parking lot if it were to get to that point, but we're also now putting a ~3300CAD battery in a 2500$ car.

I think it goes more to the project really, batteries are 10-15$ each for tabbed batteries, and that requires me to put a crap load of labor, not to mention building a diy tab spot welder (i'd buy a pack at this point), or spend ~1000CAD for the drive up to pick a used pack and chargers. Takes a while but a fun project for the end of summer...

Curious though, the Hybrids seem like they are tougher on the 12v batteries, is that true?
 
  #8  
Old 06-19-2018, 06:41 AM
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Default Re: 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

Hybrids aren't. Hondas are. That 12.9-14.2V behavior you saw is why. Traditional behavior is peak to 14-14.4, taper and hold 13.5. Honda surmised they could get a little better mpg out of their cars by running the 12V at a lower float voltage meaning they're never 100% charged, where lead acid likes to be. This shortens their life.

I routinely pull 7-10 year old 12V batteries out of the Prius.
 
  #9  
Old 06-19-2018, 06:47 AM
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Default Re: 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

More I learn about the civic hybrids, the more I learn how it has good tech, but poor execution. Poorly designed NiMH pack that cooks the middle cells, 12v battery kept at 80% charge like the IMA pack. But when it works, it works great!

What kind of difference would I see with a new 12v battery? I assume the IMA has a little less work to do charge it while running accessories?
 
  #10  
Old 06-19-2018, 06:50 AM
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Default Re: 12v battery comes on, needs a compression start to "fix"

The 12V light should stop coming on (unless your IMA light is also on, which you said it isn't), and there will be less load on the DC-DC converter (hybrid battery/IMA motor).
 

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