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2001 5S "Turbo"
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Use the buy and sell section if possible. Please include your Location in your Profile, as ALL G1 Insighters have done.
 

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You need to post in the buy/sell section. I noticed there is a lot of oak pollen on the car. Run it through a quickie car wash before taking photos;)

Can't argue with your apparent decision to sell. These little gems are best in the hands of diy folks with some mechanical and electrical skills. I no longer recommend that folks without skills buy these cars. Like Jeff, I've helped several owners over the years, but as the cars get quite old, it is no longer realistic. And, as the mileage gets very high, lots of stuff starts to fail;)

BTW, make sure that the red battery light does not come on while you are driving. The 12V underhood battery gets charged from the IMA battery in the back. So, at some point with failed IMA battery, the red battery light will come on. If that happens the 12V battery will start to discharge and eventually the car will stall. You would have two alternatives. You can take the 12V underhood battery out and have it charged, or you can implement the IMA bypass as Jeff mentioned - only necessary if the red battery light come on.
 
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$500 is more than I'm currently being offered and certainly worth the gas. But let me take a bunch of pictures this afternoon when I get home. Should I post them here, or follow JIME's advice and post in the buy-sell section?
(Which I'll admit, I didn't even know there was one!)
I PM'd you. Will be easier to discuss there as I might have specific things and it's quicker 1 on 1.
 

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Thank you so much!

Not only have I not been grid charging my battery, I don't even know what that means. There aren't a lot of mechanics around here who seem really "up" on all the hybrid things you can do. I will check out your website for the "gory" details. LOL! Thank you for putting it that way, as I am easily intimidated by mechanical things.
Kate,
First things first, now that you have a car you can use until you get (does your Insight have a name?) Insight where it will pass inspection again you can calm down. This is not a junk yard problem to worry about. It's the most common "problem" these cars have.

Don't be intimidated by our technical words. We use them to help people understand the correct terminology for what we are talking about. We all started out not even knowing what questions to ask.

For instance, a "Grid charger" is another name for what mechanics call a "trickle charger". That is a charger that plugs into a normal wall socket (the "grid") which outputs a low level charge current to various voltage batteries. If you go that route there will be a short 4 wire cable attached to the battery and cooling fan inside the rear battery box (IPU). You plug that cable into the charger and the charger is plugged into a normal extension cable from a wall socket.

Ask your mechanic if he read any error codes from the OBDII system. With luck he might be interested in reading my V2 article.

If not call around to some of the auto parts stores (AutoZone etc) to find one who will read the OBDII codes for FREE. Tell us what codes they read out so we have an idea what is going on with the battery.

I see jeffffe is PMing you so keep us posted.
 

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Has anyone mentioned doing some "forced charges" to rejuvenate that battery just enough to get it past emissions? They're drive fine with an ima light on for quite some time if money is tight.
 

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For buy/sell section, click the three dots at top right, click "forum listing," scroll way down toward bottom of the list and find "Insightful Deals." The bar at bottom of composition window allows you to "insert Images."
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Kate,
First things first, now that you have a car you can use until you get (does your Insight have a name?) Insight where it will pass inspection again you can calm down. This is not a junk yard problem to worry about. It's the most common "problem" these cars have.

Don't be intimidated by our technical words. We use them to help people understand the correct terminology for what we are talking about. We all started out not even knowing what questions to ask.

For instance, a "Grid charger" is another name for what mechanics call a "trickle charger". That is a charger that plugs into a normal wall socket (the "grid") which outputs a low level charge current to various voltage batteries. If you go that route there will be a short 4 wire cable attached to the battery and cooling fan inside the rear battery box (IPU). You plug that cable into the charger and the charger is plugged into a normal extension cable from a wall socket.

Ask your mechanic if he read any error codes from the OBDII system. With luck he might be interested in reading my V2 article.

If not call around to some of the auto parts stores (AutoZone etc) to find one who will read the OBDII codes for FREE. Tell us what codes they read out so we have an idea what is going on with the battery.

I see jeffffe is PMing you so keep us posted.
I never named my Insight. I only ever named the cars I had that I felt would die soon. (Coffeegrinder, Lemontwist, Rattletrap, Sputternut - a long line of Ford Grenadas from my father's office's fleet when I was in high school. I seriously went through 4 in a 2-year period. You knew they were gonna die when Dad gave them to me.) Because I loved my little Insight - which is as close to a name as I ever got, "My Lil' Insight" - I never named it.

People who have mechanical skills like you, don't realize how scary mechanical things can be for those of us who do not possess these skills. It's not so much the words - as the assumption of detailed action that needs to go with the words.

My mechanic said that his reader was limited, so he could only tell me it had something to do with the "big battery", but whether it was the battery itself, or the battery fan, or the cables, he couldn't say. So I actually took my little Insight to a place in Greensboro that works on hybrids, and they read the codes. They did not tell me the specific codes. Instead, they dumbed it down for me and summed up by saying, "We can tell from these codes that the big battery is dying. You'll need a new one, and they are expensive. It'll cost you about $5,000 to get one and have it installed. As old as the car is, it really isn't worth that." I said, "Thank you" and left. Then I started hunting for a new used car. I was sad to let my little Insight go, but my mother reminded me that all good things...

Then I found this forum. Now, I'll admit to being torn. I think it's a unique and cool car! However, I'm also incredibly nervous about tackling mechanical things. I'm also poor. I need to find out how much having insurance on multiple cars is costing me. I still have insurance, and will until I turn in my plates (IF I turn in my plates), but I don't know if this is sustainable. I'm going to follow JIME's advice and run it through a car wash. Then I'll share whatever photos Jeff wants with him. If he wants it, then I'll feel like it's going to a good home. If not, then I'll debate with myself some more. Hmmmm....
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Has anyone mentioned doing some "forced charges" to rejuvenate that battery just enough to get it past emissions? They're drive fine with an ima light on for quite some time if money is tight.
It drives fine. I was told that the IMA light is what causes the "check engine" light to come on. No car with a "check engine" light on can pass inspection. Or at least that's what I was told.
 

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Right, there's a procedure to get the battery good enough to pass an inspection most times then you'd be good until the next inspection period. Is your inspection once a year or every other year?
 

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What part of the country are you in? There might be a wrench-handy forum member within reasonable distance to lend a hand. There are folks here who are gonna slice me up for saying this, but a new pack doesn't really need "grid-charging" right off the bat.

If you can get the battery installed, now, you can worry about the grid charging, later.

Is it easier or more practical to put everything in there when averything apart? Yes.
Do you have to do it that way? No.
 
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People who have mechanical skills like you, don't realize how scary mechanical things can be for those of us who do not possess these skills. It's not so much the words - as the assumption of detailed action that needs to go with the words.
Sadly, the culture has influenced you to hold this view. It doesn't have to be that way. I like to remind folks that these cars were designed and built by smart humans. Other smart humans can figure out how to fix them - particularly with a good forum like InsightCentral.

You speak of being poor. You can save tons of money by learning how to do some car things yourself, with the help of forums. Replacing the battery is easy, following the directions which come with it. You need a few simple tools - less than $50.

Here's something which is quite simple, and it will tell you the subcodes which have turned on your engine light:


The OBDII plug on your car is just under edge of dash next to center console - driver's side. You can use a bent paper clip to short the two pins indicated. Just follow the diagram and directions carefully. Write down the subcodes which flash on the IMA light, and the check engine light. Report the subcodes here and we can tell you what they mean. Then, there will be no great mystery about what is wrong. It will take about 10 minutes ;)

Regarding Insurance, make sure you aren't paying for useless coverage like comprehensive and collision on the Insight. The insurance company is just going to total the car for a small amount of money if it gets damaged. The liability part is probably required by NC and is wise anyway.
 
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Careful about that insurance advice. In NJ, in adjusting a total loss, the insurer has to give you a check that would allow you to purchase a replacement year, make, model, options at dealer retail from a dealership within 30 miles of where the vehicle is principally garaged.

For me, that would prove nearly impossible right now. Only dealer-available car in NJ is presently $6k. I paid significantly less than that for mine.

Arbitrage opportunity. . .
 

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Just spoke with @Katie Jo, one of the nicest people I've met in a long time. Saw a few dozen pics, this car is in great shape, seats were covered until our conversation and are in excellent shape now that aftermarket covers removed. I was gonna move on this just to save it from the junkyard but apparently someone else is in line who doesn't own an Insight so I'm going to let them have first dibs. Hopefully they aren't buying it to scrap. If they don't come through I'll grab this. Very nice car, should make a good daily.

If the buyer is in the area and wants help installing an IMA battery hit me up, I'd be happy to help, I'm in Augusta GA.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
Sadly, the culture has influenced you to hold this view. It doesn't have to be that way. I like to remind folks that these cars were designed and built by smart humans. Other smart humans can figure out how to fix them - particularly with a good forum like InsightCentral.

You speak of being poor. You can save tons of money by learning how to do some car things yourself, with the help of forums. Replacing the battery is easy, following the directions which come with it. You need a few simple tools - less than $50.

Here's something which is quite simple, and it will tell you the subcodes which have turned on your engine light:


The OBDII plug on your car is just under edge of dash next to center console - driver's side. You can use a bent paper clip to short the two pins indicated. Just follow the diagram and directions carefully. Write down the subcodes which flash on the IMA light, and the check engine light. Report the subcodes here and we can tell you what they mean. Then, there will be no great mystery about what is wrong. It will take about 10 minutes ;)

Regarding Insurance, make sure you aren't paying for useless coverage like comprehensive and collision on the Insight. The insurance company is just going to total the car for a small amount of money if it gets damaged. The liability part is probably required by NC and is wise anyway.
You are SO right. You are such a GREAT moderator and helpful human being! Just this evening, while texting with Jeff, I learned that the driver's seat (which I had thought was worn out) was actually a seat cover! What?! Underneath was a seat in great condition! Check it out! That was like finding treasure!

Here's the thing, my Mom helped me buy a new used car. (I can't get rid of that. She'd be hurt/upset.) Two sets of insurance/taxes/upkeep is one too many for me. A gentleman named Mark says he has always wanted a first generation Insight. (He saw my post on this forum.) Yay! That'll keep it out of the junk yard. And he is mechanical. So he can do all that stuff.

You're right, of course, I really should learn. But there are other things I'd rather do. (Obviously, they aren't things that make me a lot of $, but they do make me happy. Stoopid musical theatre.) In spite of the fact that I will always love my Insight more than any other car I have owned - EVAH - I think the time has come for me personally to let it go to a new home. Thanks to you all, at least it won't be going to a junk pile!
 

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You can easily reset the codes, and hopefully the CEL will stay off long enough to pass emissions. I'll be happy to walk you through this and will only take a few minutes. Send me a conversation if you'd like to try this. This should have been the first step instead of all the gloom and doom.

Sam
 
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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
You can easily reset the codes, and hopefully the CEL will stay off long enough to pass emissions. I'll be happy to walk you through this and will only take a few minutes. Send me a conversation if you'd like to try this. This should have been the first step instead of all the gloom and doom.

Sam
Thanks. I didn't know. I trusted the mechanics.
 
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