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Discussion Starter #1
I have an empty 12V battery on my 2010 Mk2 Insight. The car won't start, and I have tried to recharge it without luck.

Now I need to tow my Insight 1,5 miles to get to a garage. But: The transmission is now completely locked in "P".

Is there anything I can do to be able to shift into Neutral and do the other procedures that one needs to do before being towed?

In urgent need of help :(
 

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Your 12V battery is probably shorted. Remove the ground cable and jump the car using a start box or another car. You will need to hook the jumper ground to a solid ground on the Insight. That will get you power so you can shift. You may only need a new battery. If the car starts on the jumper, then get a battery.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
But there is a small amount of battery power left - just enough for the interior/warning lights and just a tiny glow from the headlights. If there was a short, there would be no power at all, I guess?
The car hasn't been used for three weeks, that might explain why the battery has gone dry.
 

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I would also suggest using AAA or some other auto service. (My AAA here in Southern California sells batteries, installed on site) But making such suggestions would kind of depend on where you were. Your location is not shown.
 

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Low-amp charging the 12V battery won't work, as it has been discharged too deep. Some of its 6 cells will short.
The remaining cells provide just enough voltage to make the lights glow, as you've seen, but the dead cells remain dead.

You can however jump start the car from another car with starter cables. Once running it will keep running until you key off again.
Alternatively, get in there with a fresh 12V battery and replace the old one where it sits. You can simply drive off afterwards, job done.
 

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I'm not a G2 guy, but the G1 CVT has an override. It's a very small cover next to the shifter that you remove. Then you insert a key that unlocks the shifter when you push it in. I'm sure the G2 has something similar.

Sam
 

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I'm not a G2 guy, but the G1 CVT has an override. It's a very small cover next to the shifter that you remove. Then you insert a key that unlocks the shifter when you push it in. I'm sure the G2 has something similar.

Sam
Yes it does. Instructions can be found on page 327 of this manual.
However, replacing or jump starting the 12V battery should work too - and allow the OP to just drive it off.
 

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I agree. He's going to have to replace the 12V anyway, so why not just do it now and save the towing charge? That's what I would do.

OP, this is a classic Insight situation. The 12V is used very lightly, so it deteriorates without your noticing it. Then it finally dies, like yours did. Don't even think about charging it, because this is not a fix. The only fix is to replace it. Just do it. Now.

Sam
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks, everyone :)
I found the CVT override, and with new starter cables the battery recharged. All is well :)
 

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Not really, but I'm glad you got it going. Your 12V is bad and this will happen again, hopefully not stranding your wife. Have your 12V LOAD TESTED at an auto parts store. It will most likely fail the test and need to be replaced.

Sam
 

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Indeed. Once flat, never reliable.

The worst cells will short and discharge faster than the healthy cells, even if they seem to charge up at first.
From then on the healthy cells will block further charging of the bad cells, as they are brimmed. So the worst cell will never fully charge, and gradually deplete until it is empty while the rest is still full.

When the car rests it gently draws power from its battery. The empty cell drops to 0 volt and will even invert. The 5 healthy cells will however keep the resulting power to 9 - 10 Volt, enough to keep the instruments working.
But when you flip on the lights or the radio it drops further and you'll get an array of error warnings on the MID and the car won't start.
As the IMA control system also throws a code then it can only revert to its 12V starter engine to start up, but of course the battery can't provide enough power so you'll have just a couple of slow cranks at best.

You need a new 12V battery.
 
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