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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2010 Insight with 150,000 miles. I bought the car in 2017 or 2018 with 65,000 miles on it. I've had oil changes and transmission fluid changes regularly. I had to replace the regular 12 Volt battery in February of 2021. A couple months ago I was in the drive through waiting on my food....the car was shut off because the ECO was on. So, I was sitting there for maybe 10 minutes with the headlights on and when we got our food and I tried to start the car.....it wouldn't start. Seemed like the battery was dead. We pushed the car out of the way and let it sit for another ten minutes and it started right up. It has done this a couple times and always started after a little bit. I've removed phone chargers and try to remember to shut off the headlights....but I don't think it should kill the battery that quickly.

I have not had the battery tested yet.

Is this an issue with the 12 Volt battery or could it be something with the IMA? It looks like the IMA battery is being charged sometimes and sometimes it doesn't look like it's charging. What should I check? Should I rely on the IMA screen to tell me if it's charging or not? Anything else that I've left off here?

Thank you,
Chris
 

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The car does not charge the 12v battery very much so it has a short hard life.
Recharge it and or replace it as required after load testing.

If there was an IMA problem you would have a code.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That makes sense. I do have a charger so I will check the battery and if it's still good I will charge it.
Thank you,
Chris
 

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Please don't just read the battery voltage with a meter, LOAD TEST it for an exact condition.
 

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LOAD TEST is done with the battery disconnected from the car.
A quick check for charging is done with the battery connected in the car. First check the battery voltage with the car shut off. It should read 12-12.3V (yes, these small, somewhat whimpy batteries read so low, normal 12V batt for gasoline cars usually read 12.8V unloaded). Then start the car and you should get a higher reading, around 13.5-14.5V.

The 12V battery in Insights generally only runs the car's electronics, the engine is almost always started by the IMA motor. So Honda put in a smaller 12V batt to save cost and weight I guess. But that has a bunch of consequences, admittedly infrequent, but annoying.
1. The engine can be started from the 12V if the IMA motor cannot be operated. E.g. if the IMA battery is outside of safe operating temp, typically if it is extremely cold. Great back-up measure except that under those conditions that smaller than normal 12V batt won't stand a chance either.
2. That small 12V will get easily discharged with the engine off by the quite high load from all the electronics and lights. And then it won't even be able to run the electronics needed in turn to run the IMA motor to start the engine. I mean the interior lights up like a friggin' Christmas tree the second you open the door. LCDs for on-board computer, fan, A/C, ventilation control and whatnot.

Although as far as I know, if the engine is turned off by the ECO Auto Stop/Start, the computer should restart the engine if the 12V drops too low (from running headlights, fan, defogger and whatnot). At least on my 2013 it does that. I dunno, maybe that is something Honda added after face-lift.
 

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Took the readings for reference from my battery which as far as I know is healthy:
Car turned off: 12.2V
Ignition on (bare minimum, no lights, blower, heated seats, defogger or anything): 11.8V
Ignition on (everything on: headlights, blower, heated seats, defogger and mirrors): 11.1V
Engine running (w/ or w/o all accessories): 14.1V
 

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...

Is this an issue with the 12 Volt battery or could it be something with the IMA? It looks like the IMA battery is being charged sometimes and sometimes it doesn't look like it's charging. What should I check? Should I rely on the IMA screen to tell me if it's charging or not? Anything else that I've left off here?

Thank you,
Chris
Did you ever find the culprit? Corrosion on the connector perhaps? Not just where it clamps to the battery post, but where the wire is bolted to the clamp. We have a 2010 that's starting to show signs of this. Had a couple random not-starting episodes. I end up just replacing the battery for fear of the other half getting stranded at work.
 

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Took the readings for reference from my battery which as far as I know is healthy:
Car turned off: 12.2V
Ignition on (bare minimum, no lights, blower, heated seats, defogger or anything): 11.8V
Ignition on (everything on: headlights, blower, heated seats, defogger and mirrors): 11.1V
Engine running (w/ or w/o all accessories): 14.1V
That is not a load test. A load test is done with a machine that simulates placing a load on the battery that is significant, like starting would.
 

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That is not a load test. A load test is done with a machine that simulates placing a load on the battery that is significant, like starting would.
I never said it was. That part referred to the quick charging test. From the original description it sounded to me like the battery was to weak to even drive the electronics, let alone starting the engine. Hence I posted the figures for electronic load and whatever may have been loading the 12V batt during the waiting period.
@imaircooled did you hear a quite loud click/clunk when attempted to start the car? That would suggest the 12V starter trying to engage and indeed perhaps something fishy about IMA system..
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Sorry guys. The dealer told me the wrong date for the 12 volt battery. The battery is 5 years old.....so, it was a simple battery change. Now up and running. I appreciate the help. Now I need to figure out what the clucking noise is from both front wheels. Do our cars have struts?
Thanks again,
Chris
 

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Now I need to figure out what the clucking noise is from both front wheels
Don't have a 2nd gen Insight, but my 2004 Civic Hybrid had a clunking noise in the front end. Turns out the bushings in the control arms were shot; I replaced both lower control arms. A quick look suggests yours has control arms somewhat similar. Check them out with a flashlight and a shop manual.

Brakes that shudder will make quick work of those bushings. If they shuuder, replace the pads and rotors first with quality parts and take the time to break them in properly before you put it back in service (takes an extra 30-60 minutes.) Bleed the system and make sure the calipers and caliper guides move freely and aren't rusting inside.
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I just replaced the rotors and pads. There is no shuddering. I'm sure if it's the bushings....it's because it has 150,000 miles on it. Just normal wear and tear....I would think. I'm not much of a mechanic but I have replaced some bushings. I will take a look and see. Thanks for the suggestions.
Chris
 
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