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Discussion Starter #1
This happens once in a while, once a month or so. I will turn the key and nothing happens. Everything turns on except the engine. Usually I turn the key to off, then try again and it starts. Sometimes when it starts the car will lurch, like the car is in gear and you take your foot off the clutch. Sometimes, like tonight, it sounds like the starter is laboring, like low battery power. After stopping for gas, the IMA started the car with no problem. The IMA is usually just about fully charged. Any ideas what the problem could be :?: I have regular maintenance scheduled Wednesday(98,000 miles), so I will be asking Honda about it also.
 

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Almost completely dead 12 volt battery.
 

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Rick said:
Almost completely dead 12 volt battery.
I thought I had read on here that a nearly dead battery would cause lower mileage? I'm getting better mileage now than ever, 105.9 MPG a week ago over 17.9 miles when my previous best on that stretch of road was 101. Wouldn't a low battery also drain the IMA? I drive over 110 miles a day running my Sirius radio, the car radio, radar detector, and sometimes the heater the whole time, and the IMA rarely goes below 4 or 5 bars. I will have had the car three years in August, bought used with 4000 miles, and this is the original battery. If it is the battery, why would it only do this once in a while?
 

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Have you checked your 12 V voltage with and without loads? Does it drop a lot if you turn on loads like stereo, lights etc. when the engine is off?

This may seem obvious, but did you look at the battery chambers? Are they all at the correct level? Did you check what Honda calls the 'EYE'? Edwin's was showing the 'needs water' red circle, and lo and behold most all of the chambers were way low. When filled up properly, the red circle went away but the blue one never came on. I tried charging according to service manual, but it would not charge to make the so called 'EYE' go blue. The service manual says that means time to replace. Edwin is 2001, so battery has been in there for 4 years. I put in a Civic battery in Edwin.
 

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figgy said:
Have you checked your 12 V voltage with and without loads? Does it drop a lot if you turn on loads like stereo, lights etc. when the engine is off?

This may seem obvious, but did you look at the battery chambers? Are they all at the correct level? Did you check what Honda calls the 'EYE'?
Have not checked with and without loads. The EYE shows blue right now. Last year it showed red, so I had Honda check it. I forget exactly what they said the test showed, but it was well over 12V, and they said the battery should be good for at least two more years.
 

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bfivelover said:
figgy said:
Have you checked your 12 V voltage with and without loads? Does it drop a lot if you turn on loads like stereo, lights etc. when the engine is off?

This may seem obvious, but did you look at the battery chambers? Are they all at the correct level? Did you check what Honda calls the 'EYE'?
Have not checked with and without loads. The EYE shows blue right now. Last year it showed red, so I had Honda check it. I forget exactly what they said the test showed, but it was well over 12V, and they said the battery should be good for at least two more years.

We didn't have a mileage fall off prior to the 12V battery passing on. We did have starting issues though! That was 1 1/2 years ago on a 2000. If your on your original, it may be time. :cry:

We went w/ the Civic battery also.
 

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I am not so sure it is the 12V battery. I have had the 'dead start' syndrome on all three of my Insights (only very occasionally). As with bfivelover, I would have to go back to zero (or whatever it is) with the ignition key and they would normally start second time. It has happened to me with new 12V batteries.

IMHO, I put it down to the clutch (manual) or brake (CVT) not being fully depressed which subsequently does not fully depress the small white switch on the clutch etc, preventing engine start up. Of course, it is also possible to for you to quickly turn the ignition key just before the pedal(s) are fully depressed, also causing a 'dead start'.

Edit - Having just re-read bfivelovers original post that doesn't explain the lurch...
 

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You need to get the 12 volt checked as it's likely the problem. We don't see the usual automotive failure mode for our 12 volts because all they do is power the computers and other electronics for a very brief time until the IMA starts the car and the DC/DC converter takes over. So it takes only very little power to turn things on then suddenly when the threshold is crossed where the battery cannot do this the car's suddenly dead. On a conventional car you at least have a few weak starts that indicate it's time to get a new battery.

When the 12 volt is this dead right after driving it has enough ghost voltage remaining it will start normally from being charged by the car. But if you let it sit for a few hours it could go low enough that it won't start the car normally. Below that voltage threshold the car defaults to the backup starter motor, which I'm amazed is actually starting the car still, though you did say it sounded labored (in other words it's probably barely starting at all).

Your local auto parts store store should be able to check your battery for free whether it's a computerized tester or just a simple load tester. Also, if you have a volt meter a "12 volt battery" really should show at least 12.7 volts if not more under no load. If it's anywhere down in the 12.5 or less voltage range with no load it's almost deffinitely time for a new battery.
 

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The only way that I can explain the lurching is,
if the car is not in neutral when starting then you have:

bad hydraulics to the clucth or
clutch pressure plate fingers are worn or
bad clutch pedal adjustment.

The reason I say this is because the switch is making contact to
start the car but the clutch is partially engaged thereby rotating
slowly and lurching forward when started.

If you always start in neutral then I take bake everything I said
above. If I'm right, then not bad for a CVT owner!...

Now why you have to use the standard starter motor instead of
the IMA motor...Thats another problem...If the battery is original, it
may be the problem as others have suggested, but another thing
to look out for is a loose ground connection.

I think that you have two different problems...one electrical and
one mechanical.

JoeCVT - Just your average CVT owner
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Rick said:
You need to get the 12 volt checked as it's likely the problem.
The fact that "The Citrus Smoothie" has had similar problems with all three of his Insights, and it's happened with new batteries leads me to believe that it's not the battery. It also leads me to believe that it's a much more widespread problem, but if it is, why haven't more people reported it? It has happened in neutral and in while in gear, and it has lurched in nuetral. As I said, I'm going to Honda for regular service tomorrow, and they said they'll check it out. I'll lay odds it's not the battery. Citrus Smoothie: Did you ever get any of your Insights checked out for the "dead start" syndrome :?:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Rick said:
You need to get the 12 volt checked as it's likely the problem.
Back from Honda, and as I suspected, they couldn't find anything wrong. The battery checked out fine, so the mystery continues :? They said it would pretty much have to happen while they were checking it to figure out what's wrong. Maybe it's got something to do with the way I park it, in gear-not in gear-rolling to a stop in neutral or in gear. I'm going to try and keep track of how I park each time so the next time it happens I'll know how I parked and maybe I can re-create it so it can be checked. I used to have a Datsun 210 that had almost the same problem, and nobody could figure out what was wrong with it either.
 

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bfivelover - I never bothered getting them checked out, after all nine times out of ten they would start second time (occasionally third). As I said I put it down to the transmission not being properly disengaged. The other guess (I am no technician) is that there is an occasional computer 'logic' glitch.

Has it not happened to anyone else???
 

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Has it not happened to anyone else???
I just posted in another thread, didn't notice this until afterwards...

I've owned my 2000 manual for about a month now, and now that I've finally become comfortable with the auto-stop, this morning it failed to auto-start on me. Was in stop and go traffic getting ready to get on the freeway for my morning commute, when I stopped, the engine shut down, and then when I put in into first gear like usual it didn't fire up. I had to start it with the key, which engaged the backup starter, though it seemed labored. Maybe I'm just used to the IMA start being so instanteous.

The previous owner put a new 12V battery in just before he sold it, so I believe it's good though I have not tested it.

I didn't want to deal with the problem this morning, so I turned on the air conditioning to prevent the car from auto-stopping on me for the rest of my drive. Will be leaving work soon, I'll report back later.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I have never had the problem in auto-stop, only when turning the key to start. I've even stalled it a few times and it has auto-started when I put it in gear.
 

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I have seen that on rare occasions. It is with autostop, not start-up the times I have seen it.

In my panic, I usually shift into neutral again, and into 1st again and give gas and it usually restarts. I may have turned the ignition off and on again once or twice to fix it. It did it several times close together once. It hasn't happened in a long time now.
 

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I have had it happen a few times. After the first time, I read the solution on a thread here.
If you inadvertently release the clutch a little bit before you put it into 1st gear, it will NOT autostart. If you notice the green autostop light, it will be flashing.
 

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LoNOx 1 said:
I have had it happen a few times. After the first time, I read the solution on a thread here.
If you inadvertently release the clutch a little bit before you put it into 1st gear, it will NOT autostart. If you notice the green autostop light, it will be flashing.
Well maybe that's it, as I was in extremely heavy traffic, stopping, starting, moving 6 feet, stopping, starting... that kinda thing. Could have easily released the clutch a little.

Figgy, I know what you mean about panic. I was running late getting to work because of the unexpected traffic, had cars all around me, and was on an uphill grade. I was pretty happy to get it started again. If I'd been by myself, I would have taken my time and tried to note anything unusual, and look for any other clues right then and there.

My drive home from work was uneventfull. Everything functioned absolutely normal. (Shrugging shoulders...)

One thing that I'm still bugged about is that the engine seemed to barely start on the traditional starter. The battery is only a few months old. I saw somewhere here where you can test the starting system by removing a particular fuse, which prevents the IMA system from doing the chore. I'm going to have to try that and see if it was just my being in panic mode at the time which left that impression on me.

One of the things I really hate is a car that leaves you stranded...
 

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LoNOx 1 said:
If you notice the green autostop light, it will be flashing.
I just re-read your post and am not sure I understand this statement. I have not read a good explanation of that green light yet, but from experience, it seems that the green light is on solid when auto-stop is getting ready to happen, and then when you stop the car, the engine shuts down and the light begins to blink. Though there has been a few times when I swear I recall the engine shutting down prior to my comming to a full stop.

Some of the systems on this car are hard to totally figure out. Just when you think you understand, something happens that violates what you think you know. :roll:
 

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Devin1955 - There are two separate possibilties here, which I have experienced with my Insights:

1) A dead start - as described earlier in this topic, where there is no response when you turn the key on starting / coming out of autostop; possibly due to not engaging the clutch switch. Also see this topic - http://www.insightcentral.net/forum/vie ... php?t=1117

2) Autostop stalling - which I experience intermittently on my CVT. You are sitting in autostop then the battery and oil lights come on - the engine stalls. I have to shift to Park and start over again which can be embarassing and awkward; the car often reverts to the conventional starter motor. Not linked to 12V battery (I have a new one). Still trying to find a cure and I seem to recall someone else also having this problem on the Forum but couldn't find it when I searched.

Which one happened to you?
 

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devin1955:
I just noticed in your original post that the back-up starter restarted the car.
That's not normal.

The green light comes on and is solid green when you:

a:push the clutch in
b:shift to neutral
c:are under 20 miles per hour
d:the car is warm enough for auto-stop to happen

If auto-stop is engaged and you lift the clutch a little, it will think you have taken your foot off of the clutch. The green light will blink.

Press the pedal all the way to the floor the light will once again be solid green.
Shift into gear and the IMA will start the engine.
 
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