Road Trip for battery?

Discussion in 'Honda Hybrids' started by Mendel Leisk, Jan 28, 2013.

  1. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    Talking to my son last night: our previous '06 Honda Civic Hybrid is now getting very regular recalibrations, at least daily, or one per trip. It's actually still within the 8 year warranty, fwiw. No warning lights, of course. And has the latest software.

    The lack of warnng lights would likely mean a very steep uphill battle with Honda, I think. And if we were to win, the prize is a dusty battery that's likely been sitting on a shelf somewhere, for??

    Was looking at Re-Involt's site: they're saying now they have a battery for "2003 through 2009", that it's 30% more powerful than stock, and gauranteed for 3 years.

    Their current list of installers puts the closest one in LA. There's also suggestion to contact them re getting installer closer.

    Anyway, was thinking my wife and I might swap cars with son (and daughter in law), take a little road trip down the coast. But they're arguing they'd much rather go themselves, LOL.

    The hoops Honda's putting folks through.
     
  2. herm

    herm Well-Known Member

    has it been proven that the replacement batteries have been sitting on a shelf for 8 years, or just rumored?
     
  3. priusCpilot

    priusCpilot George

    That Re-volt sounds like a nice improve but what ever way you go, i would research on how to keep the batteries healthy like using the grid charger. That seems to be the only option if you want to keep running the Honda IMA?

    One member here has over 200k and been using his HCH with a a bad battery for years still getting 50mpg. You can also buy one the new add ons to disable the use of the pack I have also seen posted here.
     
  4. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    Good point. And I haven't aproached our local dealership yet, will try that first.
     
  5. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    Thanks for that. I see a video here:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SqTJEgknoBE
     
  6. msirach

    msirach Well-Known Member

    I had a friend contact me today when a dealer didn't want to warranty the battery in his daughter's 2004 Insight. It had been changed out before and is just a little over 100,000 miles now. They need to pony up and just buy all the cars back it seems. If the new/rebuilt batteries won't last, there's not much hope.
     
  7. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    I talked to our dealership's service department this morning. Started out sounding promising, then settled down to "no IMA light, no problem".

    FWIW, we got the software update, which more paranoid types think is instrumental in suppressing the IMA light.

    When I told service writer the car had around 135000 km's, she reponded the limit was 130000 km. When I checked on Honda Canada website, it says 160000 km for IMA System.

    I'm maybe in a foul mood, but thinking it'll be a long time before I darken Honda's doorstep again.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2013
  8. priusCpilot

    priusCpilot George

    I think that's how one member got this 200k miles and still going on the bad battery. The update makes it so you don't see the lights like you said. Maybe just use it as it and because he was getting 50mpg like that.
     
  9. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    Yeah, I'm going to have to car for about a week. Would like to see first hand just how frequent the recal's are, how it behaves.

    Pretty frustrating: a product that starts out at 100%, then degrades/slumps to it's normal operating parameters, a state that even the car's software takes exception to, daily, but ok with Honda.

    Oh well, live and learn.
     
  10. Harold

    Harold Well-Known Member

    I don't know. I'm of the opinion that if we could not see the SOC indication on the dash we would not know the difference when recal are taking place! Maybe cover that area. It does however effect the FE. Hal
     
  11. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    It's been a while since I've had the car, but I think I could tell a recal. For one thing, no AutoStop. Also raised idle speed. And very sluggish performance. Great fun when you're trying to hang a left with a limitted window of opportunity.
     
  12. Harold

    Harold Well-Known Member

    I never experience those quirks but then not allot of city driving. That could be the dif. I am getting recal on occasion. H
     
  13. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    I'm going to try email to Honda Canada, but don't expect much. There appears to be a battery available through Re-Involt. My email to them has not been answered so far. Will try a phone call.
     
  14. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    I talked to Re-Involt this morning. Found out:

    There's an authorized installer in Seattle, Arrows Automotive.

    Re-Involt is making a battery for second gen Civic Hybrid. It is nickel-metal-hydride (per original), composed completely of new cells. They claim it has 30% more capacity than stock battery.

    Price is $2700, with 3 year warranty. I believe that's installed price, and they get your old battery, but need to check.

    That's significantly more $ than their advertised $1875 price for Prius replacement battery. Honda's battery is likely not that much more, but again, I'm sceptical of anything coming from them, and to pay them to replace a battery still under warranty?

    Anyway, these guys are about 3 hours down the road from us. ;)
     
  15. Harold

    Harold Well-Known Member

    You would think a Prius batttery pack would cost more than the smaller HCH2 pack? Go figure, H
     
  16. Jess

    Jess Well-Known Member

    Mendel, I'm watching your post with much interest. I, too, have the 2006 model and am now pushing 75k miles. For the past year, I have experienced more recals than I can count. At least 2 every day and sometimes as many as 4 a day, depending on the commute. I live a couple of hours away from Re-Involt's "headquarters" in Raleigh, NC and have my eye on them as the only viable option to replacing the pack. I'm also surprised at the amount they are charging for the Honda pack versus the Prius'. Yet another reason, why I should have chosen the Prius over the HCH II.

    It's a shame, though, aside from the inadequate IMA system, the car is very solid.

    Once we have the 2011 Prius paid off in a few years, I'm looking to replace the Honda with whatever new version Prius will be available.

    Jess
     
  17. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    Well, I have the Civic right now. We sold it our son and his wife, but they're on a short vacation (with my wife :(), and left the Civic with me. Basically that's the only time it get's detailed and minor maintenance, LOL.

    The Re-Involt guy I had on the phone (I believe the main guy, in their videos, judging from his voice) also suggested I check the 12 volt condition. Checked both our Prius and the Civic, since both were stone-cold, for comparison. The Prius was 12.45 volt, and the Civic was 12.2~.

    The Civic's 12 volt battery was swapped out maybe 3 years back, by me, and has had one "close call" in my son's hands: a map light left on. I've overnight charged it with our CTEK 3300, and I think while it needs a little TLC it's not a big factor.

    I used the Civic to run chores yesterday, and within the first kilometer it went into a recal. They're really not that bad since the software update, it still has semi-decent acceleration in a recal, but there it is. Anyway, just the one, then it was "ok" for the rest of my drive, maybe 10 km total. But that "full" state of charge can evaporate pretty quick. :rolleyes:

    I was a little taken aback by the price for a civic battery from Re-Involt, especially considering the size. The civic battery's like a compact attache case, comparing to the Prius which is about the size of a military boot locker, LOL.

    I would think the framework and electronics in the Re-Involt battery for the Civic are largely recycled from the spent batteries they receive. The batteries themselves are brand new, according to Re-Involt. What attracts me is freshly made (I hope) batteries, 30% increased capacity (again knock-on-wood), and the no-hassle immediacy of the swap process. The 3 year warranty, and installer only 3 hours drive is reassuring too.

    The price maybe boils down to the small volume of Civic Hybrids (say vs Prius), and "what the market will bear"?

    When we sold this car to our son and daughter-in-law, I told them we would help if the battery bombed. It's a little frustrating, I mean: the battery is still under Honda warranty. But weighing all the options, I'm thinking Re-Involt might be the best bet.

    And I don't see buying another Honda product, for a long time.

    If we go through with this Seattle Re-Involt install, I'm for sure going to log mileage on the way there, and back. It'll be interesting to see what a new battery does. Isn't Google maps wonderful: 219km, 2:32 hours with current driving conditions. I'm not sure what the difference will be; would suspect a modest improvement in mpg, and more improvement just in driveability.

    For me the long term scenario is to get a few more years out of the vehicle, then sell it. I think without the battery swap it would be close to scrap value.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2013
  18. Harold

    Harold Well-Known Member

    I would wait for it to pack it in. H
     
  19. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    ^ Well, it's kind of like replacement windows I think. Do you put up with leaky, misted up junk for years, until they fall out of the frames, or?

    Rant: Of course Honda says there's not a problem with these "undead" batteries. I think there is a problem though, of credibility, for them.

    Hey, I just spent $2700 on a (dental) implant, LOL.
     
  20. priusCpilot

    priusCpilot George

    Your 12v battery have lost capacity due to sulfattion. The Ctech does have a desulfating circuit but would take many weeks to get some capacity. At 12.2 volts on the Civic battery it will be at 50% capacity.

    Have you looked into grid charging the hybrid battery pack to equalize them first? I have read about them on the Insight forums.

    Coupled with that device to control the pack you may be able to make it last a very long time.
     

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