Isn't the starter & alternator the same thing? If it had stopped working, you'd have a car with a discharged 12volt battery and no working radio, wiper, etc.
No, the Insight has no alternator. Its 12 v. starter is just a normal starter motor. The 144 v. IMA motor is also a generator. As a motor, it can start the engine or assist the engine in moving the car. As a generator, it can recharge the 144 v. battery pack while decelerating the car.
2000 Insight A/C #559
Genesis One MIMA+FAS and grid charger, OBDIIC&C, Rostra, Fumoto, DEFA engine block heater, Philips LED DRL's, Honda security system
So is it recommended to occasionally start with 12v just to keep starter from freezing? (Flip IMA switch, start a couple times, and return switch to normal ON position). I have a 2010 EX and have never had the 12v start the car. Any problems with my scenario?
Just disconnect the 12V battery overnight. The computer will "forget" the SOC of the high voltage battery and assume it is zero. Then it will use the standard starter. That's how my 2002 worked whenever I left it sit too long and the 12V battery had died.
OWN: 61mpg Insight (greenercars.org score: 57)
both blue and silver,
and a 45mpg BeetleTDI (score: 47).
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