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Old 05-03-2019, 10:28 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default GreenTec batteries?

Our 2010 Insight (99,500 miles) has been showing the Check IMA System light periodically for the last few months. For the most part the car seems to be functioning fine but the SOC occasionally fluctuates wildly.

I've been looking into what to do about it. I talked to a local hybrid mechanic yesterday about reconditioning. Some places say that it will restore 90-95% of your battery at a fraction of the cost of a new battery. This sounded too good to be true and after talking to the mechanic yesterday it seems that it is. The process involves slowly depleting and recharging the battery over the course of a few days. Once done there's really not much way of knowing if it fixed anything and even if it did the "fix" could last a long time or the problem could come back in a few weeks. He did not recommend trying this.

Refurbished batteries are another option. They are less expensive than a new battery but not by enough for me to feel comfortable with it. Looking around on hybrid forums there's a lot of stories of refurbished batteries failing very prematurely.

That leaves a brand new battery as the most failsafe option. Unfortunately it's also the most expensive option.

For new batteries I've looked into two options.
1. Honda dealer. My dealership gave me a verbal, well handwritten on an invoice for another service, quote of $2500. I have to double check that that is for a brand new battery and whether or not it includes labor.
2. Green Tec. This is a national hybrid battery chain. They offer three batteries for the G2 Insight, two reconditioned and one new. The new one is roughly $2100 and includes installation - they will come to your house and install the battery. From the description on their site this battery looks to be a better battery than what Honda offers (though take that with a grain of salt, they're trying to sell you something). It comes with a 36 month warranty with no mileage limits.

Green Tec sounds pretty good because) 1. it's less expensive, 2. the battery seems better and 3. the warranty is longer than what I think Honda offers

Does anyone have experience with Green Tec? Looking online the reviews seem overwhelmingly favorable. Their BBB score is an A+, they've been around for years, etc. Seems like a trustworthy business.
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Old 05-03-2019, 10:50 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm not a G2 owner nor GreenTec knowledgeable.

Many of us G1 owners go to Jeff at Hybridautomotive for "grid charge/discharge" systems that provide maintenance for our packs and extend their life. Even after replacing the pack, the system remains useful as a maintenance tool.

For packs, both refurb and new built, and also with warranty; many of us rely on Eli at Bumblebee batteries.

Jeff and Eli are highly regarded here on IC.

Definitely worth a look.

edit: just noticed you're in WI. Eric at EV Powers is near you. He also is well versed in Honda packs, and is also highly regarded here on IC. Might be worth stopping by for a visit.
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Last edited by Mountain driver; 05-03-2019 at 10:53 AM.
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Old 05-03-2019, 11:01 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks.

Eric is who I talked to about the reconditioning process and the pros and cons. He also said that the dealer price was "a steal". I really appreciated his honesty about everything, nice guy.

Bumblebee doesn't have the battery that I would want in stock.
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Old 05-03-2019, 11:06 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Good to see you've met Eric. Did he mention the national car meet up Insightfest ?

Great opportunity to meet other owners and share ideas.
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Old 05-03-2019, 01:45 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I've read several complaints about bumble bee and premature battery failure due to the use of inferior chinese cells ... on the other hand many more will swear by them ... fwiw ... dorman is another option
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Old 05-03-2019, 02:12 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Dorman decreased their warranty from 3 year down to 1 year.
Not sure that fits most people's needs given the price.
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Old 05-03-2019, 04:39 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Unfortunately, there are many stories of premature failures of the Chinese sticks. Bumblebee will now sell you a pack with a 5 year warranty, but you pay $2300 plus shipping. It is probably the best deal available, but haven't checked lately.

They are fairly easy to install if you just follow directions.
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Old 05-03-2019, 10:38 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Before anything else...

1) Very important to establish that your 12V battery is healthy. LOAD test.
2) Very important to establish that your car is fully "patched" with all updates.
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
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^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

This, the failure of 2nd gen IMA battery packs is rare. It will, of course, happen eventually, but I seriously doubt you are there unless you have addressed both items Mr Keith suggests.
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Old 05-04-2019, 10:05 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by egads View Post
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

This, the failure of 2nd gen IMA battery packs is rare. It will, of course, happen eventually, but I seriously doubt you are there unless you have addressed both items Mr Keith suggests.
Thought I'd chime in before you... Even *I* can learn something eventually...
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