Honda Insight Forum banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am having some mpg issues with my (new to me) 2000 honda insight 5spd with 167k miles on it.

The lifetime MPG when purchased was 64.3 (now 64.1 500 miles later, woops). Also just to gloat I got this car for 900$ No issues other than needing a new 12volt, cracked windshield and the car smells a little musky. (autozone charged me 130 for 12v! dang! better be good...)

Currently getting 45-50 mpg. Got 49 mpg last night on about a 50 mile trip through some hills and flats and was really trying to get better than that (was going 50 on all the straights when it was a 55).

I live in Seattle and temps have been in the high 30's to low 40's. Often rainy.

The car sat for around a year when I bought it and the 12volt was disconnected so I am not sure how that affects the hybrid battery.

Has Re-92's with lower tread (better for mpg in my experience anyway).

All maintenance done at honda and seems well taken care of. The owner is now deceased and the older son sold it to me, but the dad owned 2 of these and a first gen prius and a crz (quite the enthusiast).

The son said before he parked it the IMA light came on and off a few times.

About me; Ive been hypermilling to some extent for a while now. Start with a metro and have owned two insights before (installed grid charger for both). and now own this insight as well as a 08 prius (now the wifes car).

I installed a grid charger (I use hybrid automotive grid chargers for all my hybrids) on the current insight and have now balanced the battery twice as well as I discharged it once to 140 volts and balanced it again and then I just took it down to 96 volts and balanced it. I should note that I am using the prius power supply (thought it would charge it faster then...no longer have an insight power supply.) and on this last balance from 96 to 168 it took 36+ hours just to get to 168volts then I left it on for a total of I think 46 hours so ensure it balanced.

I do not get re-calibrations as far as I can tell. Though when normally driving the battery gauge seems to stay near the same spot most of the time. Ive been going into higher gears earlier and flooring it in order to used the assist and that makes the battery fluctuate.

I feel like the car boggs down a bit in first and second gear, but I haven't driven manual in a year so maybe I am just relearning :p

Anyone have any idea what might be wrong? Would rather not buy a new battery pack (first baby on the way). Sorry for the long post, I struggle gathering my thoughts and organizing them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
your current weather is going to be a major limiter on the mileage you see, those numbers aren't abnormal for cold and wet weather as these cars take a big hit when the roads are wet or the temps are cold, put both together and you are lucky to get 50mpg with a relatively stock insight. a radiator blocker would help a bit to get the temps up and engine operating more efficiently but you also have to be careful once summer comes around as not to starve the engine of air to keep things cool.

since you discharged and balanced the battery, i doubt it is background charging causing the majority of your low mpg.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I appreciate your reply! I am newer to seattle and back in california I was get 55-60 mpg on a insight with snow tires on(came with car), so it is a relief to hear that wet and cold is what is hurting my mpg. Hopefully nothing else is the issue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
probably not, when it rains here my car loses about 15+ mpg, worse if the rain is heavy. that's not even factoring in your cold weather as a sub 60F day in florida is pretty uncommon.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
probably not, when it rains here my car loses about 15+ mpg, worse if the rain is heavy. that's not even factoring in your cold weather.
hmmmm....not sure why that is, I feel like rain would reduce rolling resistance (hence hydroplanning and longer stopping distances).
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
4,730 Posts
Well, no. The tires are constantly pushing water out of the way, consuming energy.

Also, from my experience in Seattle (I wasn't in an Insight) you don't go anywhere without dealing with hills. You need to learn the best ways to conserve energy going up (slow down, downshift, etc) and get as much back as you can going down (foot completely off the throttle to shut off the injectors, coast with engine off, etc). These cars are very sensitive to SO many things, and you need to adapt. Don't use the defroster if you can help it. That will run the AC. Air your tires up as high as you dare. But you probably know all of this. Just stay alert and practice.

Sam
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Well, no. The tires are constantly pushing water out of the way, consuming energy.

Also, from my experience in Seattle (I wasn't in an Insight) you don't go anywhere without dealing with hills. You need to learn the best ways to conserve energy going up (slow down, downshift, etc) and get as much back as you can going down (foot completely off the throttle to shut off the injectors, coast with engine off, etc). These cars are very sensitive to SO many things, and you need to adapt. Don't use the defroster if you can help it. That will run the AC. Air your tires up as high as you dare. But you probably know all of this. Just stay alert and practice.

Sam
Lots of hills and mountains around here, luckily I don't live in the city so I don't have to deal with those crazy hills.

With the insight is it best to be in the proper gear for power from the gas engine (ie up a hill I usually need to be in 2ed to have throttle response) or should I be in one gear up and gas pedal to the floor so it uses the assist? When I seem to always be in the proper gear for gas engine and throttle response (usually shifting 2-2.5k rpm) my battery level charge doesn't change much as all.

Unfortunately I need the defroster just about every morning, I don't like not being able to see out the front window! Maybe rolling down the window will help a little. Once the car is warmed up enough for auto stops I turn off the AC system completely so it can stop and start again (I find pressing the econ button when I have defroster on doesn't let me turn off the car as easy).

I set tires 2 weeks ago to 40 psi all around, planning to go higher soon, just wanted to do it in small increments so I can feel the differences. Car had 20 psi all around when I bought it! It is a pain trying to air up the rear tires though.

I know all about fuel cutoff and what not. Still need to learn Lean burn but I need to figure out how to show that on my Scan guage II. I like when the engine is warmed up to break a little harder before I know I have to stop the the autostop turns engine off and I coast. Is that the same as engine off coasting? When I first started hypermilling and people talked about turning off engine on downhills I tried it and freaked up because my breaks stopped working and I needed to slow down before curve...not sure if I trust doing that again!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
9,763 Posts
Install a CALPOD switch and use it as a "Boost" command, kind of like a "NITRO" button.
Shifting at those rpm you won't see much power for accelerating, and rely mostly on the IMA for power. Winter Weather and Fuel Blend is a killer for MPG.

Learn to keep your momentum up and NEVER shut the engine off And COAST.
A very bad habit to get into. (My opinion)

Sacrifice a few MPG for Safety.

USE YOUR BREAKS , ........."brakes", or it will be costly. Your car could break!
(Couldn't resist.)

HTH
Willie
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,751 Posts
You're at 167k miles, pull the upper/lower catalytic converter and punch them out. Make sure you remove the oxygen sensors before doing so, and install a spark plug anti fouler on the #2 (lower) sensor.

My bought my car at 140k and by 155k miles and I went from getting 60-64 without effort to low 50's because my cats clogged. Punched them both out, wazzam, back up to specs.

Just punched a fellow forum members out a week or two ago, he went from high 30's/low 40's to mid 50's afterwards. (he has 175/65 tires and a bad IMA).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
i am not so sure punching out the cats helps on a 5MT insight. my car actually runs worse on cruise without them. if they are healthy at least, i believe leaving them alone is the best course.

it might be a CVT thing, or it could just be my car, i don't know.

plus, don't punch them out, chop em out. that's a couple hundred bucks of recycling you're throwing away. :p
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,751 Posts
i am not so sure punching out the cats helps on a 5MT insight. my car actually runs worse on cruise without them. if they are healthy at least, i believe leaving them alone is the best course.

it might be a CVT thing, or it could just be my car, i don't know.

plus, don't punch them out, chop em out. that's a couple hundred bucks of recycling you're throwing away. :p
Sorry, but you are incorrect. Both of my insights that I have punched out were 5 speeds, and the one I recently did was a 5 speed as well. I never noticed a negative impact after punching them out, mainly due to the fact clogged cats are extremely bad for engine health and -will- do more harm than good for MPG.

Also, if you want to pass emission you can't just cut them out. A smog shop will instantly spot that, and having a custom exhaust made to replace the chopped out cats is a hell of a lot more expensive than a 3$ spark plug anti fouler on the rear o2 sensor.

If you have the right tools, and the exhaust isn't rusted to death, gutting them takes all of about an hour and a half. You only need a 10mm, 12mm, 14mm and 22mm(i believe). Soak the bolts in penetration oil a few hours beforehand and they all break free pretty easily.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
well i think the argument there is if the cats are failing or failed, in my case lean burn got weaker in it's ability to maintain momentum without the backpressure.

however my cats were good, but i was trying to find out if you were right about them having a negative impact. in my case, the reverse was true and getting rid of them didn't help, but actually made the car run worse anywhere outside of WOT.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
850 Posts
Lots of hills and mountains around here, luckily I don't live in the city so I don't have to deal with those crazy hills.

With the insight is it best to be in the proper gear for power from the gas engine (ie up a hill I usually need to be in 2ed to have throttle response) or should I be in one gear up and gas pedal to the floor so it uses the assist? When I seem to always be in the proper gear for gas engine and throttle response (usually shifting 2-2.5k rpm) my battery level charge doesn't change much as all.

Unfortunately I need the defroster just about every morning, I don't like not being able to see out the front window! Maybe rolling down the window will help a little. Once the car is warmed up enough for auto stops I turn off the AC system completely so it can stop and start again (I find pressing the econ button when I have defroster on doesn't let me turn off the car as easy).

I set tires 2 weeks ago to 40 psi all around, planning to go higher soon, just wanted to do it in small increments so I can feel the differences. Car had 20 psi all around when I bought it! It is a pain trying to air up the rear tires though.

I know all about fuel cutoff and what not. Still need to learn Lean burn but I need to figure out how to show that on my Scan guage II. I like when the engine is warmed up to break a little harder before I know I have to stop the the autostop turns engine off and I coast. Is that the same as engine off coasting? When I first started hypermilling and people talked about turning off engine on downhills I tried it and freaked up because my breaks stopped working and I needed to slow down before curve...not sure if I trust doing that again!
Well, I'm still out here in CA, and my trips can vary from under 50mpg to 80mpg depending on a few factors.

-Cold starts and short trips kill mpg. A 5 mile trip from cold morning almost guarantees under 50mpg for that segment.
-City driving and hills kill mpg. Whenever I drive through SF, I struggle to stay in high 50s, and almost impossible to crack 60.
-Practice and lean burn make a tremendous difference. After practicing pulse and glide, I no longer kill a trip segment mpg just from the part existing freeway to parking at home. Before I'd get 5mpg less from first stop after freeway exit to parking. Now I'm able to keep it maybe 1mpg less or the same.
-Monitoring lean burn make a really huge difference. I monitor O2 1x2 with the Torque app, and when it stays at 0.0V I know it's in lean burn. My friend's car has the O2 sensor extension, so that can read 0.1V instead at lean burn.
-I was surprised on freeway I can stay in lean burn sometimes with assist.
-I was also surprised it's often better to be in 4th gear rather than 5th gear to stay in lean burn and get better mpg. This is usually the case under 50-55mph or going up a slight incline. Also changing gears reduces mpg, so sometimes it's better to stay in 4th rather than switching to 5th and then back to 4th.
-Finally I learned I can stay in 3rd gear going 20-30mph in city driving. A combination of pulse and glide when under 30, and lean burn once you hit 30 will can get you close to 60mpg in the city even with stop signs. If you time the red lights, you can get over 60mpg, even 70mpg in city driving 20-40mph.
-Get ready for lock-knee. My knee hurts, I haven't figured out how to completely avoid this yet. My knee already can hurt without hypermiling, this just makes it worse. Actually I got some knee straps for hiking, maybe I should try wearing them for driving...lol.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Ya been getting 47mpg as of late myself due to short 3 mile trips with hills etc. Then I think about it 47mpg isn't bad for not trying I guess and keeping up with normal traffic speed around here. But highway I still only can get 55mpg on my insight going 75mph. So I'm not sure. For many people 55mpg is awesome. I could go 60mph and get in the 60s I guess but that is too slow. Oh ya my insight is a automatic though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
Ya been getting 47mpg as of late myself due to short 3 mile trips with hills etc. Then I think about it 47mpg isn't bad for not trying I guess and keeping up with normal traffic speed around here. But highway I still only can get 55mpg on my insight going 75mph. So I'm not sure. For many people 55mpg is awesome. I could go 60mph and get in the 60s I guess but that is too slow. Oh ya my insight is a automatic though.
sounds typical, the manuals do get a chunk higher than the CVT can.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,546 Posts
Esprout you should put the equation i posted on your torque app. You get the air fuel ratio and i made it flash above 22 to 1. Much better than monitoring the downstream sensor. You can also destinguish between lean burn and fuel injector shutt off (at shut off air fuel is around 38 to 1) works great. You can also see it trying to lean burn and not catching. I monitor air fuel and throttle position.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
850 Posts
Esprout you should put the equation i posted on your torque app. You get the air fuel ratio and i made it flash above 22 to 1. Much better than monitoring the downstream sensor. You can also destinguish between lean burn and fuel injector shutt off (at shut off air fuel is around 38 to 1) works great. You can also see it trying to lean burn and not catching. I monitor air fuel and throttle position.
I do have this programmed already :) But it needs the pro version, so I put the other one as even the free version can monitor sensor voltage.

I make mine flash at 19, as I find that threshold to be a reliable indicator of lean burn. In fact even 18 should reliably indicate lean burn.

What is the pattern to watch for that indicates an attempted lean burn not catching? How do you monitor air fuel and throttle position? (if air fuel is just short for AFR in the last sentence, then just how do you monitor throttle position?)

Edit: Upon reread, noticed you put 22 as lean burn indicator flash ratio. My lean burn typically hangs at just above 19 to just below 21. If it's 22 it wouldn't normally flash in lean burn. This has me wondering if my car is a bit inefficient in lean burn, and I do notice my friend's car does seem stronger and stay in lean burn a bit easier, even after we cleaned EGR plates on both. I should ask him to monitor his AFR and see what he's getting there.

PPS: Your photo link in the AFR monitor thread is no longer working, an unless I'm going cuckoo, that thread has been chopped.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
405 Posts
Car sitting, clogged or semi clogged cats and INJECTORS..(In my car for sure).

I had this exact same situation re my Insight when I first got it. Left this site for a couple months but I saw you needed help and couldn't resist:).

Put TWO cans of (best is Seafoam, IMHO, cheaper is Berryman), but with two can on a fill up, it works also, just slower:).

The sitting causes injectors to "gum up" from fuel breaking down to thicker, gummier distillates as lighter more aromatic distillates evaporate over time.


That causes the incomplete combustion to clog the Cats with soot and unburned heavy hydrocarbons. My Insight got so bad, it wouldn't rev above 4800 rpm in gear (didn't try hitting rev limiter in neutral, I think thats RISKY and stupid)!

If your (poster claiming less performanbce) cat gutting didn't help performance, then your cats were working still. If it runs better, they were clogged. Mine were, and gutting them made a HUGE difference in power AND mpg's.
ALso, the egr cleaning (and I eventually bought a cardone egyu valve from Rock AUto for $200.00, but I'm back in Winter (Alabama admittedly) getting 65+ mpg's averaging 65mph...

Instant best fix, Injector cleaner.Then MAYBE a "smog pass" additive, then run it like its stolen, GET THE CAT HOT AS POSSIBLE (after a hundred miles or so with injectior cleaner getting the spray patterns working as designed).

If you still cat reach redline, and or after vtec changes to high rpms, it doesn't accellerate MUCH better, gut the cat.
Less backpressure (in an otherwise healthy engine) will hurt low end torque to lower midrange tq. (thus mpg's) This can be tuned out with advancing timing and tweaking ecu settings on OTHER cars, just not ours as no ones offering a tune or tuned ecu's currently for insights...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
I had this exact same situation re my Insight when I first got it. Left this site for a couple months but I saw you needed help and couldn't resist:).

Put TWO cans of (best is Seafoam, IMHO, cheaper is Berryman), but with two can on a fill up, it works also, just slower:).

The sitting causes injectors to "gum up" from fuel breaking down to thicker, gummier distillates as lighter more aromatic distillates evaporate over time.


That causes the incomplete combustion to clog the Cats with soot and unburned heavy hydrocarbons. My Insight got so bad, it wouldn't rev above 4800 rpm in gear (didn't try hitting rev limiter in neutral, I think thats RISKY and stupid)!

If your (poster claiming less performanbce) cat gutting didn't help performance, then your cats were working still. If it runs better, they were clogged. Mine were, and gutting them made a HUGE difference in power AND mpg's.
ALso, the egr cleaning (and I eventually bought a cardone egyu valve from Rock AUto for $200.00, but I'm back in Winter (Alabama admittedly) getting 65+ mpg's averaging 65mph...

Instant best fix, Injector cleaner.Then MAYBE a "smog pass" additive, then run it like its stolen, GET THE CAT HOT AS POSSIBLE (after a hundred miles or so with injectior cleaner getting the spray patterns working as designed).

If you still cat reach redline, and or after vtec changes to high rpms, it doesn't accellerate MUCH better, gut the cat.
Less backpressure (in an otherwise healthy engine) will hurt low end torque to lower midrange tq. (thus mpg's) This can be tuned out with advancing timing and tweaking ecu settings on OTHER cars, just not ours as no ones offering a tune or tuned ecu's currently for insights...
Thank you for the advice! I have been putting fuel system cleaner in and my mpg have raised to 52-54 mpg which is nice.

Didn't think about driving it like I stole it though, I can see the benefits of that with the injector cleaner, good idea. I am not sure if my cat is in bad condition or not, has not thrown a code as of yet!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
running it hard isn't to help the injectors, it's to bake any loose particles loose from the cat. but usually when a cat deteriorates it is done, running it hard just causes it to melt down and then you really know if it was bad or not.
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top