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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First post to the forums here, although I have been a regular reader since I got my 2001 Insight last year! I love this site, and it is a really great car, although mine is old, just over 300,000 miles.

Didn't see this specific problem after a search:

Should mention that I had been having what seemed like a battery issue, although not critical, where the car would make a battery clicking sound for a half second before the car starts up just fine. Was thinking that it was only a matter of time though...

So today I started the car and was driving, but the engine suddenly stopped after a block. Then when trying to restart, the same battery type click happened continuously, but no start! I tried to get a jump, but no luck, same click. All the dash and lights and wipers worked fine though.

Should mention that it was raining out, and one time a couple months ago I had a similar problem where the car wouldn't start in the rain and then started up fine the next day. That hadn't happened since then when it rained though. Also should mention that the car is missing the hybrid engine, so just running on gas at this point. The car has gas.

I do not know too much about cars, but I read that perhaps the distributor cap is bad if it doesn't start in the rain. But this started and then just died out of nowhere. Not sure if it's a bad battery though, because all electronics are working ok and the jump didn't work at all. Really not sure about the clicking though.

Are there any guesses about what is wrong?
 

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Start by having your 12V battery load tested. Then make sure your ground straps are intact.

Insights don't have distributor caps.

Sam
 

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Also should mention that the car is missing the hybrid engine, so just running on gas at this point....Really not sure about the clicking though.

Are there any guesses about what is wrong?
Your IMA system is bypassed - so maybe you should clue us in on how it's bypassed - pack still there, just circuit breaker turned OFF? Did you pull connectors off the battery computer? Etc... Also, does the clicking come from the front or back?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Any tips on how to check the ground situation? It might be corroded, so I was gonna try to clean it off with some steel wool maybe.

Clicking comes from the front.
 

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Your IMA system is bypassed - so maybe you should clue us in on how it's bypassed - pack still there, just circuit breaker turned OFF? Did you pull connectors off the battery computer? Etc... Also, does the clicking come from the front or back?
Yes. Need more info on what you mean by "missing the hybrid engine".
What EQ1 is eluding to is that the car CAN run on gas alone, but ONLY if the IMA system is PROPERLY disabled...otherwise, the car will only get electricity from the 12V battery, and the 12V battery will not be charging. If the IMA is properly disconnected as per these instructions Hybrid Automotive - Honda Insight (2000-2006) Battery Bypass Instructions , then you can run on gas alone indefinitely.
Lift up rear cargo carpet, and look under small access cover to see if the red switch is OFF or ON. (Or, if there is a switch there at all...)
If you put a new 12V battery under the hood, does the car start up? When you first turn the key on, do all the dash lights test light up? It would be good to know if any of these warning lights are burnt out: IMA, the small Battery Light, BRAKE.
Are you able to tell if the car starts up on the (auxillary) starter motor? (This may not be obvious to someone who has not heard/felt the normal starting behavior with the IMA system.)
Also, if you are able to plug in an OBD2 code reader, what codes are you getting?
Where are you located? Please put your location in under User CP menu. There may be others close to you who can help check it out.
Welcome to the forum!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Pretty sure it was wired correctly to make it into gas only mode, since it has been running fine for almost a year now, but I'll check.

I think the issue with the clicking was resolved today when I found that one of the ground wires was basically detatched, so I cleaned the wires with steel wool and reconnected them. That got rid of the clicking, and now the engine tries to turn over, but no start!

I think it may be a different problem now, which is similar to one I had before when it rained. I notice that when it is turning that there is a regular tapping type sound, but those are the only clues I have about what could be wrong now. Gonna just wait a day to see if it starts tomorrow...
 

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Good that you solved the clicking issue.

At this age the original straps tend to break; do check on the other straps too. Test them for continuity, or better just replace them as they will fail soon anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Pretty sure the electrical is good now, but now the engine is turning over and making a slow tapping sound, although not firing up.

Gonna try posting a video link of the sound on YouTube, but I am a new member so it won't let me post a link.


Just put http :// before this:
youtu.be/0IiWZSumGxw

The battery was hooked up to a jump start for this.
 

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Sounds like no compression on one or multiple cylinders. Remove the Cylinder Head cover and turn it over by hand and see if all lifters are going up and down. If they are then do a valve adjustment and continue diagnosing. If they are not you have a broken camshaft and more than likely bent valves. You can either source a Used head $200-$500 or a Used engine $400-$800.

Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Beginning to think that the cranking of the engine means either that the engine was flooded with gas as I was trying to start it before, or maybe a bad fuel pump.
 

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Sounds pretty normal to me, just not starting (but it is difficult for me to diagnose noises from recordings). The Insight has that sort of weird lumpy turn-over when using the auxiliary starter motor. That clicking could be anything - bad or benign... I'd be doing the standard 'no start' troubleshooting, gas?, spark?, etc...
 

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Forget the jumper. Have your 12V battery LOAD TESTED and replace or charge if necessary. Replace the ground straps. You need to eliminate each possible cause of the problem.

When it rains do your carpets get wet?

Sam
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Could it possibly be bad spark plugs? Going to check them tomorrow, before bringing to the shop to ask about the compression. Definitely need a new battery too. Thanks for the tips.
 

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All 3 spark plugs wouldn't fail at the same time. Don't worry about the hard stuff until you get a healthy 12V and ground straps.

Sam
 

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All 3 spark plugs wouldn't fail at the same time. Don't worry about the hard stuff until you get a healthy 12V and ground straps.

Sam
I wouldn't count anything out, I lost two coils at the same time a while back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Forget the jumper. Have your 12V battery LOAD TESTED and replace or charge if necessary. Replace the ground straps. You need to eliminate each possible cause of the problem.

When it rains do your carpets get wet?

Sam
Hey, I am still working on this car, eliminating possible problems, but still having the same issue when trying to start the car. I have new ground straps, new spark plugs which I tested and all are working, the starter was new when I got it so only a year old. I just haven't replaced the battery yet, because I am not sure if it's necessary instead of just jumping it.

Checked the fuel line and it is getting gas, but I'm not sure if the engine might be flooded maybe since I've been trying to start it so much. Is this a reason the engine might not start? Very much stumped at this point as to what could be wrong.

In response to Sam, there was a leak in the driver side paneling, so I am guessing the floor might have gotten wet at some point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
On another note, this car might be done for, and I might be ready to scrap it, so if anyone is looking for parts in the Philadelphia area, then we should get in touch!
 
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