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Hello, I'm new to this forum, so excuse me if I'm asking a repetetive question. I have a 2000 honda insight with 65,000 miles, manual transmission, and about once a week my battery completely discharges, and then slowly charges backup as i drive. has anyone else seen this? i took it in for service, and honda said not to worry about it, the battery is fine. It doesn't seem right, so if you could please help.

Fleming
Florida
 
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Hi Flemingljr:

___It sounds like a “Recal” to me? You can read all about a “Recal” in either the Insight Knowledge Base or by using the search in the forums. It is written about quite extensively actually … From the Knowledge base as posted here: http://www.insightcentral.net/KB/faq-no ... eroBattery
Q: My battery charge level suddenly went to zero. What happened?

A: This is normal behavior. Depending on your driving pattern, you may see this often, rarely or never. The charge in the battery has not suddenly gone away, the gauge has just "corrected" to accurately reflect the amount of available charge. The more assist and partial re-charging that has taken place since the gauge last read fully charged, the more likely you are to see this.

Technical explanation:

Unlike a fuel tank where the amount of remaining fuel can be physically measured, there is no direct way to determine the battery's charge level. Instead, the best the battery gauge can show is an estimate. This estimate is based on the following measurements:

A. The amount of current that has "entered" or "left" the battery since it was last fully charged or fully discharged,

B. Measurements from the 10 battery voltage sensors, and

C. Measurements from the 4 battery temperature sensors.

The resulting battery charge estimate tends to be remarkably accurate. However, as the car is driven, this estimate will drift from the actual amount of charge available. Since the measurements of current are cumulative from the last time the battery was deemed fully charged or fully discharged, the more the battery has been used since it was last entirely full or empty, the greater this drift will tend to be.

When this drift becomes great enough, the car will detect that its measurements from current, voltage and temperature sensors don't agree with one another and determine that there is no longer any further available charge. When this happens the gauge will correct itself.

The typical scenario:

Common situations where you may see this correction is shortly after you've been climbing a long hill, or after you've done a fair bit of full-throttle acceleration. Prior to correcting itself, the gauge will still show some charge remaining. When the correction happens, the gauge may fall instantly to zero, or you may notice it stepping downwards over a period of several seconds or longer, before falling all the way to zero. You may also notice situations where the gauge indicated some charge left prior to turning off the car, but shows zero charge the next time you start it up. This is because the IMA system remains active and battery charge measurements continue for several seconds after the car is turned off.

After the gauge correction, the car will behave as it normally does when the charge is very low. Specifically, auto idle stop will not take place, you will see the gauge showing partial charge when idling, decelerating or cruising at a constant speed. Also, no electric assist will be available for a few minutes until the battery has some charge available.

If anyone ever questions whether the Insight's electric motor really makes a significant contribution to performance, driving with no charge available illustrates clearly that it does. You can still get around perfectly fine with no charge (though you may notice you need to give it more gas that you normally have to when starting from a stop in the 5 speed Insight), but it lacks a lot of its normal fun-to-drive character until a bit of battery charge is restored.

Note: You should also be aware that like many fuel gauges, the battery level gauge is non-linear. It is designed so that the top half of the gauge represents significantly more than half of the overall battery capacity. This makes small changes in available charge much more evident when the charge is low, when charge level becomes more relevant.

Also Note: To maximize battery life, the IMA system maintains the NiMH battery pack between 20% and 80% of its rated charge level. As such, the system considers the battery fully charged at 80%, which corresponds to the very top of the battery level gauge. Likewise, it considers the battery fully discharged at 20%, which corresponds to the very bottom of the battery level gauge.
___Does this sound like your symptoms? If so, too many is a bad thing. Once a week or less is too many for me but I don’t think anyone knows what too many actually is?

___Good Luck

___Wayne R. Gerdes
___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
___[email:pie6v6fn][email protected][/email:pie6v6fn]
 

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Yeah, sounds like a recal. You might want to start writing down every time it happens and see if you can get it checked out by a dealership. They will tell you it's fine unfortunately, then you will have to take it up directly with Honda if you choose to fight them. You may want to check out the Yahoo Honda-Hybrid group. A member there, Drew, had the same problem, but it was much much worse and finally after getting a lawyer they agreed to put a few thousand dollars of new electronics in it and fixed the problem.
 

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Well, read up on Drew's case. His is the worst I have found. Think the yahoo groups url is groups.yahoo.com and search for the Honda-hybrids group, this was several months back. It was to the point where it would recal several times while he was commuting somewhere. Often times it would dump right when merging on to a freeway or starting from a light when you need it most. He nearly got in several accidents because of it. I'm not sure if yours is that bad, but unfortunately it's a disturbing trend thats happening.
 

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Possible constant recal fixes

from Jackmpg, new member
1. You will need the service manual and FOLLOW THE PRECAUTIONS FOR
ACCESSING THE IPU AREA(under the trunk). The IMA battery assembly
is on the passenger side. There are two silver boxes on top of it, the BCM is the on the drivers side. Inside the IMA are 10 batt packs. The connector to check is the one on the rear of the BCM. All info along with the pin-outs
and instructions will be found in the service manual, page 12-91. You will
be measuring the static voltages of each of the batt packs. The service
manual states that if ANY two-test volts vary more than 1.2vdc you are to
replace the IMA battery assembly.
2. Also check the BCM. The connector to check is the one in front on the
passenger side. The spec is 1k to 10k ohm's between the black and red
wires. Info in service manual on page 12-90. If out of spec service manual
states to replace the BCM.
3. I'm always experimenting: I recently read a message at the Honda-
Hybrid site @ yahoo about an issue with the engine ground cable located near engine air filter above trans. I inspected mine, appeared crystallized(heat?). I removed it along with the bracket below it. There was PAINT
ON THE CONTACT SURFACES! I removed the paint, cleaned all, sprayed
with lubricated contact cleaner(Radio Shack). As a former Dealership
mechanic I am aware of the weird issues that can be caused by weak
or bad grounds. My insight normally recals once or more a day. Since
the repair it hasn't suffered a recal in 8 days now. We'll see....
Another observation: Since the ground repair- if I drive 1st or 2nd gear
above 3600 rpm when the IMA dash indicator is down a few bars the
car will charge four bars(kinda like a recal or ECM reset) till the batt is
topped off. Or if stopped in neutral and holding engine above 3600 rpm,
batt will top off but will continue to show charge four bars as long as
3600 rpm maintained.
Any ideas? Any would be appreciated, please reply or post.
Thanks, Jackmpg [email protected]
P.S. I believe the insight to be the most efficient production vehicle ever
made at a reasonable cost & will continue to buy them as long as
They’re produced. The recal issue WILL be resolved. After a life of
technology I do not know of anyone who's heard of a battery
system that cannot be regulated without a reset.
 

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I just had my IMA replaced under warranty last week. I actually helped the tech install it!! i took a few pics with my cell phone, so i'll be posting info when i get the time.. just look for it.
 

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Hi Flemingljr. It is worth checking whether you still have your original 12V battery; with a 65,000 mile 2000 car it might need replacing. Quite a few members on this forum were experiencing regular recalibrations which were then resolved with a new 12V battery (including me).
 

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thats the first thing the mechanic looked for when he was testing my car before replacing the IMA, and he told me right away that my 12V battery is not the original so it already has been replaced...
 
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