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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I have a 2000 Insight, manual transmission. I bought it two years ago, when gas was over four bucks a gallon. It has a salvage title, but has had zero problems and got a clean bill of health from the dealer before I bought it.

These days I drive very little, and what driving I do is city driving. Until today, I've had no IMA problems.

Today I started the car without issue, but the check engine and IMA lights were on. The battery charge was at zero, and neither the charge nor assist meters registered anything as I drove.

Is it possible that something is just disconnected, or is this certainly a dead IMA?

Since the car has no other problems, the $1,000 repair would probably be worth it, but I had been thinking of selling the car anyhow, as the two-seater is no longer really practical for us. As a secondary issue, do you all have any advice for selling the car in this condition? I think I would have to sell it to an Insight enthusiast who had no qualms about having the battery repaired.

Thanks so much for your help!
 

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The first step is to get the check engine light codes. Drive it to an AutoZone or Advance (maybe O'Reilly too) and they'll read your check engine light for free. Then you can post the codes here, and we can give accurate and specific advice.

I think you're right; the best way to sell an Insight in need of repair is here on InsightCentral.
 

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These days I drive very little
That could be the reason for the IMA light. The IMA battery in a Honda hybrid doesn't do very well unless the car is driven regularly. I drove my 2000 Insight about 2,000 miles/year parking it during the week and driving only on weekends. I'm on my third IMA battery in only about 25,000 miles driven.

If the diagnostic trouble codes indicate battery deterioration, you might be able to extend its life by installing and using a custom IMA battery charger/balancer. That's my current strategy. However, irreversible damage may have occurred which would require battery rebuild. So building or buying such a charger might be a waste of money and time, but it's difficult to know until you try it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Ok--I had the codes read at Autozone. They are:

P0303 (Cylinder number 3 misfire detected)
P0171 (Fuel system too lean bank 1)
P0300 (Random cylinder misfire detected)

This doesn't sound like IMA stuff, and yet the IMA light is on, and there is no battery charge.
 

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I'd say it's time to inspect the ignition coils and change the plugs if it's been a while. All three codes would be caused by a misfire, which would also pump unburned fuel and oxygen into the exhaust, setting the second code.

If the #3 ignition coil is at all cracked or corroded, replace it.

The IMA seems a bit skittish in this car. I've seen it disable assist and regen for seemingly no good reasons.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
And the answer is . . .

Battery control module went bad, allowing the IMA battery to overcharge too many times, which killed the IMA battery, and caused damage to the motor control module.

Car still runs great, and of course still gets better mileage than most things on the road today.

I am in Washington, DC. Any Insight enthusiasts looking for a project? I would like to get a little something for it, but certainly not much, and may be able to drive it to you.

Anyone interested?
 

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Well, I've got one of these wasting space in my workshop, waiting to be balanced and dropped in.



And my dad's been talking about getting an Insight... so that makes me interested. I've PM'd you my email address.
 

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Battery control module went bad, allowing the IMA battery to overcharge too many times, which killed the IMA battery, and caused damage to the motor control module.

Car still runs great, and of course still gets better mileage than most things on the road today.

I am in Washington, DC. Any Insight enthusiasts looking for a project? I would like to get a little something for it, but certainly not much, and may be able to drive it to you.

Anyone interested?
Contact me privately via email. I buy battery packs, but I'd really like to know what error codes you got. I'm suspicious that what you are describing is not actually what has happened.
 
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