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Old 06-26-2018, 01:51 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default First time hybrid owner: Inspecting a 2010 Insight

Hello, I am excited about joining this community! Thanks for the chance to benefit from your knowledge.

I just bought a white 2010 Insight with 100,000 miles. It was a California car last owned by an active duty enlisted marine. This is the very first hybrid I have ever owned and I am not mechanically talented.

After I got the vehicle home and let it sit for almost a week, I discovered the motor oil is slightly overfilled. The washer fluid reservoir seems to be filled with plain water. The lock button on the key does not remotely lock the doors as it should. The unlock function does work normally. Hopefully these are small details that can be resolved along the way.

The Insight will be used daily in an extremely hot climate, hotter than Las Vegas or Phoenix.

I would like to solicit your advice about finding the right mechanic to do an initial inspection. What work will this car require to make it run well for many years?

The CarFax revealed some regular service at Honda dealers in the past.

I called Findlay Honda in Henderson, Nevada and asked for the price of an inspection. I was quoted an hour of shop time at 135 dollars. Is that a good price to find out what work is required? That dealer is located a couple of hours away from me.

I know a couple of other mechanics who are close to my house. They seem to do good work. But I wonder if they may be less experienced with hybrid vehicles since hybrids are not popular at all around here. Also, I am assuming they will not have access to some specific Honda resources including software updates.

What would you do with a recently acquired 2010 Insight?
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Old 06-26-2018, 04:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The Insight will be used daily in an extremely hot climate, hotter than Las Vegas or Phoenix.

Where are you at DEATH VALLEY?
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Old 06-26-2018, 04:55 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Definitely change CVT Fluid more frequently than required.
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Old 06-27-2018, 12:53 AM   #4 (permalink)
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You can register your Honda at:

Honda Owners Site | Tips, Tools & Benefits for Honda Owners

Using the VIN number. It will tell you if there are any open recalls. Besides the airbags, there was also a campaign for software updates. If that has not been done, any Honda dealer is supposed to do it for free.

At 100k you are not looking at needing much actually. The MID is real, use it to time your oil changes instead of just going by miles. Once it gets down to 15% it will set codes for items that need to be done. The next big one for your Insight is spark plugs. That does not need to be done at a dealer, but it is very important that the specified plugs be used.* They are expensive and there are 8 of them even though the engine is just 4 cylinders. It's probably OK to wait on that if you need to for financial reasons, a few of us have waited to over 120k and took out perfectly clean serviceable plugs. Only real Honda long life coolant should be used to top off or replace. I think the replacement interval is around 120k (once again, the MID will set a code for that) I second the suggestion to have the CVT fluid changed more often than the MID will call for. (I don't think every other oil change is too often) Also, the brake fluid gets changed every three years regardless of miles.
Try to find some shade to park it in. Do not let it sit undriven. This not a car for an airline pilot or attendant to leave for weeks at a time. Regular commuting is it's best use.
Don't worry too much about the oil being overfilled. Ours always came from a dealer oil change with the level above the second mark. It has to be all the way to the lower mark to be a full quart low. Excessive oil consumption started with the 2012 model year and was over by 2014.
This engine does not have a timing belt, so no service interval there.
There are washer fluids that are not blue, so it may not just be water. It really doesn't matter unless you experience freezing temps.
*there is a pinned post in the maintenance section here with tips about changing the plugs that may be helpful to an independent mechanic.

Put your location in your profile.
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Old 07-09-2018, 06:22 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I can't thank you guys enough for the helpful replies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Willie Williford View Post
Where are you at DEATH VALLEY?
The southern border of Lake Mohave.

Quote:
Originally Posted by freezin4 View Post
Definitely change CVT Fluid more frequently than required.
Thanks for bringing that to my attention.

Quote:
Originally Posted by egads View Post
You can register your Honda
I will certainly do this or communicate with a Honda dealer using the VIN.

Quote:
Originally Posted by egads View Post
At 100k you are not looking at needing much actually.
I do plan to use the maintenance minder to time my oil changes. However, I hesitate to trust the maintenance minder for other tasks right away. What if the previous owner did not follow the maintenance minder very well? That could leave me to overlook important maintenance, or possibly even repeat maintenance before it is really due. I am not saying I should not use the maintenance minder, but perhaps it will take time before it synchronizes accurately with what work is actually being done.

Thanks for bringing spark plugs to my attention. I will be sure to use genuine Honda long life coolant since you mentioned it.
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Old 07-09-2018, 07:18 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I bought my 2010 at about 86k miles. I immediately did a CVT fluid change and replaced both CVT filters. I also did an oil and oil filter change.

Also, call a nearby Honda with the VIN and ask if there are any recalls for the car. If there are any, have them perform them, but while you're there ask them to check if there are any IMA software updates for the car. There is 1 recall update, but also 2 extra updates. You want all 3 software updates. Usually they will do the extra two updates for free, especially if they're already doing another recall such as airbags.

Spark plugs are supposed to be replaced around 100K, but there are 8 and they are expensive. I've gotten to 129k now in mine and I haven't changed them yet, but I probably will soon.

With exception of the recalls and the software, I wouldn't have Honda do any of the other stuff I talked about. Honda will charge and arm and a leg for CVT fluid + filter, and they will tell you "oh it doesn't need the internal filter changed" because that's not in their maintenance schedule. But when I did my internal CVT filter change (remove CVT fluid pan to get to it) the filter was black. It's also an opportunity to clean off the CVT pan magnets.

Use only Honda CVT fluid. Here are the part numbers for everything you need:
25430-PLR-003 (External Filter)
25420-RBL-003 (Pan Filter)
90471-PX4-000 (Washer)
21814-RPS-000 (Gasket)
Just ask for the fluid at the parts counter, but it may be cheaper to get the filters, gasket, and washer online at hondaautomotiveparts.com or g1parts.com you can always call your parts counter and ask them to tell you the prices of everything and compare vs the online store prices.
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Last edited by Natalya; 07-09-2018 at 07:25 PM.
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Old 09-02-2018, 03:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natalya View Post
Spark plugs are supposed to be replaced around 100K, but there are 8 and they are expensive.
Thank you for letting me know about the CVT filters.

I think I will have the spark plugs replaced as soon as possible. I am leaning toward the genuine Honda spark plugs rather than an aftermarket brand.

Quote:
Originally Posted by egads View Post
Only real Honda long life coolant should be used to top off or replace.
Is it worth replacing all the coolant in order to ensure it is genuine Honda coolant? I have no control over what was put in the engine before I bought the car. Better to be safe than sorry and replace it all?
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Old 09-03-2018, 02:35 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I doubt very seriously that the coolant has been changed. Our 2010 is at 140k now and I donít think we ever had it changed. I donít think it has even needed topping up. I think the interval, before these things were done by oil life, was 120,000 miles or ten years.

There is really only one NGK spark plug you can use, doesnít matter if it comes from Honda or not. Just aware that, because they are expensive, there are fakes out there. If you find a deal that seems too good to be true, it probably isnít.
My son in law changed ours (works at a auto repair place and got a deal on the plugs from an NGK rep) he said they look really clean and we waited to 130,000.

I would not worry too much about doing the whole shebang on the trans. That is for serious dyi types. Just get it changed, using real Honda fluid.
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Old 09-03-2018, 04:21 PM   #9 (permalink)
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For the coolant, look in the reservoir. If the coolant is blue it is almost certainly the good Honda stuff. If it is any colour other than blue it's not OEM.
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Old 12-26-2018, 11:42 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks again for the help so far. I am liking the Insight more and more.

The car makes a moderate to loud, high-pitched whine when it starts cold. It has made this noise ever since I first got the car. The problem only persists for a few minutes when it occurs.

Has anyone heard of this problem before?
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