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Honda Civic Hybrid IMA Problems

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  • sorshasorsha Posts: 6
    I formulated a 60 page letter, it included complaint, concerns and other issues over this website and greenhybrid.com.

    I sent it registered mail to my dealership president, president american honda customer service, american honda customer service, president of honda motor co in japan and i made sure to CC. it on the document itself.

    I have also been filling out the forms that my dealership gave me and faxing them over to american honda tech daily.

    After recieving my letter the president of my dealership contacted me and wants to set up a meeting with honda engineers to look at my car. The parts and service manager has contacted me and has insisted to american honda on being involved in all conversations.

    As of right now, the horrid sueprvisor who originally handled my case no longer is with honda, and has switched to acura. I have a new supervisor who is reviewing and collecting all of my information.

    Currently they are awaiting information from Japan, so it is good I also send my file to Japan.
  • Well, the O2 sensor was replaced yesterday, 9/5. The dealership had the car for about 3.5 days. One thing they wanted to do was get a "snapshot" of the computer. A "snapshot" is a 3 minute recording of all the inputs and outputs of the engine. Then the "snapshot" is sent to Honda Tech and compared to what is supposed to be normal. Everything indicated normal. One of the technicians reportedly said "this car is messed up". The service manager told me that he cannot fix my car. He wasn't optimistic about the O2 sensor being the fix for my car, still indicating that American Honda is working on a fix for the software and no target date. Until then, the car's performance is considered "normal at this time".

    Last weekend, the IMA system failed to assist in 87 degree weather. The car was running on the 3 cylinder gas engine only, hence seriously underpowered. I reported this as a safety issue, since it can be dangerous in city or interstate driving when acceleration is needed. I am considering filing a complaint with the NHTSA,
    NHTSA concerning this serious problem when the IMA fails to engage. I know that someone in California has filed a class action lawsuit over the low gas mileage, but I am more concerned about the safety factor.
  • In my last post I made a typo in the description of the engine. I should have said the 1.3 L inline 4 cylinder engine.
  • Hi all,
    I have an 07 civic hybrid with 17,500 miles, and it looks like I'm hitting some of the same problems. Last week, I started up the car to find the battery gauge at 0 bars, something that's not happened to me before. It took about 10 minutes of normal city driving to get the battery to show any charge at all. Now, the IMA seems to be acting very erratically. I've been driving at 25-30 mph on some city roads around here with over half battery charge, and while coasting, the IMA will be draining enough energy to bring the car to <15 mph within a block. Not only that, but IMA assist seems to be kicking in a lot earlier and a lot more than it should be.
  • I have a 2004 HCH 5 speed that I bought used about 6 months ago. I had about 82K miles and now has 93K miles. My average MPG since purchase is 46.1 and I have been as high as 55 MPG on a tank.
    Recently my IMA & Check eng light has been on. At first, I could clear the codes and the lights would stay off for 4-5 days. Now, they stay off 1-2 miles. The codes are 1433 and 1600. I have noticed that the battery charge indicator will be showing a good charge but will not assist, then a few minutes later the charge indicator will be extremely low. Its like the indicator is not keeping up with the rate of discharge. Also, when the indicator is showing a good charge the Charge/Assist meter shows slightly charging. At times the Auto shutdown does not work, but there is no rhymn or reason as to why.
    I have also noticed that when accelerating up hills the assist indicator will go to about 3/4 but almost immediately drops to about 1/4 assist. Any ideas? Any help will be appreciated.
  • Despite my sending letters to Honda Motor in Japan, American Honda, and my dealership to the presidents/CEOs, I am still getting no results. American Honda understands that the battery is overheating and a safety feature being initiated but since this is a normal operating procedure, refuse to fix my car until something more serious results. Currently, if I drive on the highway averaging 60 mph, with no AC and the windows barely cracked I can squeeze out 41mpg.

    My problem is inconsistent as sometimes on a tank of gas I can average 48mpg and others barely 30mpg. This is a sharp contrast to the 50+ I was getting BEFORE I took it in to the dealership.

    My dealership has since claimed to help me to resolve the problem but has not returned my phone calls. I am going to a new dealership for my 30k maintenance as is it $388 at the new dealership and $554 at the one that broke my car with their refusal to go any lower on the price than $499.

    I certainly hope that you all are doing what I have been doing, which is complaining, refusing to give in, and demanding that they send you, IN WRITING, their instructions for you to continue to drive these cars malfunctioning.

    I fully intend to continue to compile all of this information and send it to every news station I can in the hopes that if nothing else, other people will not be suckered in to buying a car that is sub par from a manufacturer that no longer upholds the standards of the past.
  • Your problem seems to be the common problem that is being reported. Since I have seen this with my car since October 2007, I have also complained to the dealer and my car has been in the shop about 5 times for this abnormality. The dealer tells me that American Honda says that the characteristics of the car are "normal at this time" and that they are working on a new software update. The last time I was also told "When you run the air conditioning, direct the vents upward toward the roof of the car to send the cold air back toward the battery." That is ridiculous. I have filed a complaint with the NHTSA at safercar.gov. If you're interested in reading it, it is complaint # 10241683.
  • I happened upon this thread while searching for information that would guide my decision making process in this latest predicament.

    My 06 Civic Hybrid has about 73k miles on it. I have been having IMA problems for quite a while. At least once a day the RPMS will hit 4 or 5 with almost no output when I am at a stop. The gas milage is considerably worse in all driving except highway driving, in which it is only marginally worse. I get about 30-34 in the city now, and get 45 or so on the highway. In the early days of the car, I could achieve 48 city, and 50-60 highway.

    I have many times been endangered when the car had no power and I was making a right turn. Often times large trucks and semis are very close to hitting me. I am lucky that I haven't been a statistic yet.

    The other day I had a situation in which I was in a part of LA with very steep hills. I parked on the almost 45 degree angle hill, and walked away. When I returned and started the vehicle, I began to hit the accelerator. There was no power at all, which is very similar to the woman from Marin county. I tried other gears, and kept on the gas for awhile. This was a bad part of LA late at night, so I wasn't amused by the car deciding to crap out. I eventually ended up having to reverse all the way down the hill, and good thing I left enough room between me and the car behind.

    I have read about issues with the control arms and uneven tire wear. I think I may have had this occur, as I am now on my third set of tires, and every set gets absolutely ravaged. After about 30k miles the thumping cannot be tolerated anymore.

    I took the car to a dealer in Southern California, and they had the car for over a week to thoroughly examine the IMA issues. The service manager said that he had a similar problem with his Civic, and that he had not been aware of anyone else with a similar problem. They said that they spoke with Honda Techs over the phone to discuss the issue, and that they cant quite nail it down yet. They advised that I could bring it back once it was showing codes. I explained how unsafe I felt the car was and that I needed the issue to be fixed regardless. They advised to contact Honda customer support, which will be one of my next steps. Unfortunately, based upon what I read here, it seems as though that may not make much of a difference.

    I am going to contact the woman in Marin county first and get the full scoop of what happened with her and how they did it. After that, I will start with NHTSA, Honda's basic customer service, and work up to carpet bomb email campaigns against the CEO, letters to the Attorney General, negative media publicity, and then a full scale lawsuit against Honda if necessary. Hell, it could be a class action with it affecting so many.

    I see that many people are having this issue, but not may are reporting to NHTSA. I think we all need to do this as much as possible. If theres enough complaints we could wake the sleeping dragon and they the gov will get on them about it. Put the fire under their asses.

    I am open to cooperate as a group against Honda, or to collaborate on a solution.

    I will keep everyone informed about developments.
  • I was referred to this thread from greenhybrid.com

    I am having the same issues as many people here are complaining about. I have also been stonewalled by Honda in their attempts to claim that this is normal behavior for the car and therefore doesn't need fixed.

    I have filed a complaint with the NHTSA and would urge everyone with the issues to do the same as eventually, like me, you will be caught off guard in a dangerous situation. Eventually someone is going to get hurt, lets hope it never happens, but it boggles my mind that Honda is willing to wait until it does.

    Every time I call them i get blown off. They just dismiss the issues as if they dont exist. I have contacted local news stations and started working on a video to put on the internet (youtube etc) to show people what to expect if they buy this car.

    If anyone has any suggestions about dealing with this please let me know. Unfortunately we aren't collectively making enough noise for Honda to care yet.
  • halanrhalanr Posts: 2
    Since my original post, not much has happened. My condition hasn't gotten worse, but I still have erratic IMA problems. The battery indicator never shows a full charge, and will sometimes drop suddenly. My mileage is still at 38-40 (when I work at it) and if driven without hypermiling, is more like 36, whereas I used to get 44-46.

    The dealer had me fill out a questionnaire to Honda's techline, but nothing has been done. My warranty is up in January, and I have a feeling, they're just going to let it ride. My dealer tells me that they will be an advocate for me, but the ultimate decision is in Honda's hands.

    This will be the last Honda I ever get, and I've always purchased Hondas. My next hybrid will be a Toyota. This is ridiculous.

    Should someone want to start a class-action lawsuit, don't hesitate to contact me at: harothberg@gmail.com.

    ==== Original post: ===

    Count me in also... I own an '06 HCH that after 26K miles developed the same problem as most of you have referenced. My dealership, Honda of Concord, NC has taken a hard-line stance that they cannot do anything. My battery won't charge to full capacity and suddenly drops for no reason. My mileage has gone from 46 MPG to 38 MPG (if I'm lucky and work at it!).

    It is very frustrating. I owned a 2003 HCH and had no problems with it at all. I wish now I would've kept it and not purchased this model.
  • jesssjesss Posts: 1
    I have had this problem in my 2006 HCHII from time to time. I have done 2 things that have more or less resolved this issue for me.

    First, I try to lay off the Assist. I find that I can completely not use it once the car is at 25mph. I use slow, smooth acceleration. I try to use at least 2 to 3 bars, but sometimes 4 cannot be helped.

    Second, I recharge the battery every chance I get. If I'm going down a hill, I allow 1 or 2 bars of recharge bars to show. This has been the key to keeping the battery state of charge up. I try not to rely so much on the battery pips as they are not an exact representation of the battery's state of charge (as stated in the manual). I have been able to keep the pips at 6 or 7 regularly.

    I used to coast as much as possible with no recharging and did not use my brakes often at all. This would cause the battery to drain and re-calibrate, causing my mpg to drop and the car to run on the engine alone. When this happens, I stay in the right lane (I drive only in the right lane anyway) and let it do it's thing. Between 5-10 mins later it' s back to normal.

    You have to recharge your battery whenever you can, not just when braking to a stop, but even when your coasting. The car seems to suck more energy from the battery, more so than it recharges back into it. You have to look for those opportunities to recharge it.

    Try it for a week or so and see if there is a difference.

    BTW, I've had my car for 2 years with approx 28500 miles on it. My lifetime average mpg is 54.9 over 52 tanks. My last 6 tanks have been in the low 60's mpg. I have a 30 mile round trip suburban commute which I regularly get 65 mpg.
    I live in Charlotte, NC and the summers can get a little toasty with mid to upper 90's w/ 100% humidity. If I use the A/C, I use the Auto A/C set at 78-79. It seems to have less drain on the battery than regular A/C.

    Good Luck.
  • sorshasorsha Posts: 6
    I too looked into getting a Toyota hybrid, and learning from my current experience I did a lot of research on the Prius in particular, and they have just as many if not more detrimental issues than the civic... Try checking concumer affairs if you have not already done so. The problems go all the way back to 2004.

    As far as an update on my situation, I had Mr. Ogawa with American Honda send me a letter in writing that there is absolutely nothing wrong with my car despite my complaint. And when the letter arrived, lo and behold he stated that my dealership had inspected and driven my car and saw nothing to substantiate the claims about my car.

    I find that appalling since the dealership clearly saw there was a problem, had my car for over 2 days, felt the need to contact American Honda, had me fill out that ridiculous form and has been in contact with me just about 3 times a week. So how on earth could he basically claim that my concerns were unfounded?!!!!!!

    :mad:
  • My 07' Civic Hybrid has the IMA disease too, and I have filed a complaint with the NHTSB. My car's symptoms briefly; rapid discharge of battery (all bars gone in less than 10 seconds), occurs much more frequently in hot weather, cannot achieve 8 full battery bars anymore, reduced gas mileage (about 10%), less effective braking while malfunctioning (actually feels like the cruise control in on when you let off the throttle).
    Living in Louisiana my dealer doesn't see lots of hybrids, so they are at a loss but seem to want to help. My biggest problem; although my IMA might malfunction a few times a day.... or not, I cannot get the IMA to act up when at the dealer. Has anyone been able to come up with a method of getting the IMA to rapid discharge all the bars in less than 10 seconds on demand? If someone can come up with a way to get the malfunction to occur intentionally the dealers would not be able to send you home with the car saying it's working within Honda specifications and we might get some traction for a repair or the lemon laws would get our cars replaced. Has anyone found a way to get the car to malfunction on demand?
  • Good to hear that you have filed a complaint with the NHTSA. I filed one in early September, and all of us who are having the problem should file a complaint. As far as causing it to happen "on demand", it always happened to me more often in stop and go traffic, and when the AC was needed. The service manager at my dealer explained that in warmer temps, when the battery goes from charge to assist to charge and so on, all in a short time, it causes the battery to heat up. One of the software updates is designed to protect the battery from damage by cutting out the IMA assist and the drain on the battery. The only suggestions given me were "direct the AC vents to direct the cool air back toward the battery" and "take the back seat cover off to allow the battery to cool". Insane suggestions? Here are my unresolved issues:

    1) There is erratic behavior of the charge/assist system. Sometimes the system charges under acceleration when it should assist and it assists when coasting downhill and it should be charging.
    2) Sometimes the charge/assist indicator will bounce between charging and assisting, and a noticeable &#147;bump&#148; or &#147;surge&#148; occurs. This happens when the car is accelerating, or sometimes decelerating down a hill when it should be charging.
    3) Although a new IMA battery was installed and for a couple of weeks it seemed to hold a charge, the battery has become discharged on several occasions since the installation of the new battery. The car then exhibits very degraded performance and poor gas mileage. The battery has never charged the way it did before the first IMA problem. Prior to October 2007 it would often charge fully, sometimes each day. Since the first IMA work in October 2007 it rarely charges fully.
    4) Sometimes when driving on level ground or a slight downhill grade, the gas mileage indicator drops all the way down. It stays there for several seconds and then goes back up to a normal level.
    5) At times it seems that the engine will race or rev up when I start to accelerate from a stop. The car engine goes to AutoStop when the car stops, but it doesn't&#146; seem to move immediately when it restarts the engine after I take my foot off the brake. This does not happen really frequently, but occasionally.
    6) The gas mileage of the vehicle has dropped almost 15% overall. But the gas mileage has also very frequently been inconsistent. At times the MPG is up to the 50 MPG range or more. At other times it is in the 38 &#150; 44 MPG range on the same type of road conditions, same driving patterns, and no AC use on either occasion. I drive the vehicle 30,000 &#150; 33,000 miles per year for work, so I am very familiar with the normal performance and mileage of the car, at least before the problems occurred after the IMA warning light came on in October 2007.

    I have told my dealer that I am considering some options, contacting local and/or national media about the unresolved problem and American Honda's denials, and getting a magnetic sign made for the side of my car that will warn others who may be considering buying a Civic Hybrid. I would name the local dealer and American Honda and state that they cannot fix my car. The dealer has made me a decent offer to trade my car for another, and I could get a pretty good deal on a 2009 non-hybrid. I told them that there are bigger issues than just my dissatisfaction. The weather is cooler here now, so the safety issue is not as big of a problem. I hope other owners file complaints and try to put pressure on Honda. There could be some strength in numbers.
  • :sick: Thanks for the reply. I know our problem seems to be worse with heat, however the weather is cooler here now and although not as frequent it's still happening with my car. Couple thoughts; as for the gas mileage loss I really believe this is due to reduced battery voltage from it being damaged during the rapid discharges. I have some knowledge with rechargeable batteries and rapid discharges are their death. I have seen them vent or explode when rapidly discharged. Once they have experienced this brutal discharge, and it only takes one time to damage them, their output voltage under load is reduced and for us this means less assist from the IMA therefore more gas engine required to do the same amount of work. The heat caused by the car sitting in a parking lot for example might reduce the the batteries output voltage if plotted on a graph, but is not enough to be felt to the driver and is not gong to be the cause of the batteries suddenly dumping their capacity. Which gives me my greatest concern, our IMA batteries contain a lot of stored energy, when they rapidly discharge.... where is the stored power going?? To see all your bars click off in under 10 seconds requires nothing less than some form of dead short... can anyone say dangerous. I seriously doubt any system in the car is capable of using that much power in that brief period, therefore a short circuit that could cause an explosion concerns me.
  • sorshasorsha Posts: 6
    Several of you have been very helpful and are therefore familiar with the IMA assist problem occurring in our vehicles.

    After almost 4 months of getting the run around from American Honda, they finally attempted to be rid of me by sending me a letter stating that there is nothing wrong with my car, and that (contrary to actions taken by my dealership) Duval Honda found no evidence to support my claims that the vehicle was malfunctioning.

    They have since stopped taking or returning my calls. Going so far as to hang up when I call the service manager direct.

    I have gone to a new dealership.

    The issue:
    As of yesterday my car threw a check engine light, while accelerating, the car will buck and jerk and is really quite terrifying to be driving. This behaviour is inconsistent and I had initially thought the problem to be the O2 sensor. It will turn off my cruise control when the irradict behaviour starts up as well.

    However, (as I am sitting in the dealership now) I have just recieved information that this dealership thought a rat had damaged a single 2" area of my wiring harness. I of course being moderately familiar with cars, and not at all stupid went to see for myself this "rat damage"

    And wouldn't you know, this must be the best rat ever, because the casing around the wires was rather neatly "chewed" and almost no plastic was missing at all. Only a single black wire from within that casing was damaged, and it was almost perfectly cut.

    I of course took my stance that there was no way a rat came into my car decided to cut my wire casing and neatly cut a single wire. There is no evidence of any damage anywhere else in the car.

    FORTUNATELY, my service advisor understood my concerns, and my conspiracy theory against my last dealership and took it up with the manager.

    So now I am getting the wire fixed and new diagnostics done on the car, with the oil changes etc. for $90. They said they did not want to be associated with being at all like Duval Honda and did not want to behave like Duval Honda.

    While still not perfect, it is much better than the original cost, but I don't feel like they did the damage, and I am not taking it back to Duval Honda to try and argue that they did it, so I will be moderately content to part with the $90.

    I had never thought to check and see if my old dealership had "accidently"
    damaged any part of my car.

    But this is where I am now on the IMA issue, I hope that this fixes it.
  • I have recently had some work done to my 05 HCH and ever since then the mpg have dropped by 5-10.
    My day started out with a flat tire. It was time to get new tires so that's what I did. I took it to a tire store and while they were under there they noticed the front brakes were 90% worn so I had those replaced and the 50,000 mile check-up. Starting that day after I left the tire store I'm averaging 34-36 mpg instead of 42-46 mpg. Does anyone have any insight on why this could be? It is really bothering me. Any advise would be greatly appreciated.
  • I experience 36-41mpg all the time. I was wondering if you are still seeing high 40's after your O2 sensor replacement? Also, which sensor did your replace as there are 2 (one at the front and one further back). Thanks!
  • After the O2 Sensor was replaced on my 2006 HCH (front one nearest engine) the erratic situations stopped entirely. Mileage is better also typically 41 to 44 range in town, better on highway but we use another car mostly for highway. Use of cruise control - even when you usually would not - and lowest fan speed position seem most helpful. The car want to control everything itself and to have you use least electrical power so it can allocate power where it wants to. This car is not as good mpg as another #2 HCH 2006 I drive at times - as it will always do 10% better under identical conditions. Car 2 has the orig. factory tires and car #1 with less mpg has newer Sumitomo hi-perf. low rolling resistance tires. Factory tires are slightly lower rolling resist. and have less wet traction.
  • CHECK YOUR TIRE PRESSURE!!!! I increased my pressure some 30 (cold) to 36 (cold) and my MPG increased from 36.5-42 to 39-47.5 (aftermarket Yoko TRZ tires). Thats a massive improvement and I would be willing to bet that most Hybrid owners aren't checking their tires as much as they need too. You can loose up to 2 lbs of tire pressure a month. I also noticed that my IMA system seems to be responding better as before it seemed quirky (not using IMA at random times). The system charges the batteries better as well.
  • babootbaboot Posts: 3
    Thanks to everyone for sharing their issues about their HCH. I joined this forum to find out about my recent problem with my 2003 HCH IMA.

    The IMA light came on during a recent trip over Christmas (250+ miles). It came on while I was running low on gas and the "gas pump" indicator light was showing for about 15-20 miles (I have run with the gas indicator light on before with no issue and my IMA is probably not related to the low gas but I thought I would provide the information).

    After checking in the owners manual I made an appointment with our local Honda dealer a few days after the IMA light came on (and never went off by the way). I have just returned from the dealer and I was told their tests indicate "the IMA battery system is bad and it needs to replaced at the cost of $3785".

    Not pleased I asked if driving the car in "this condition" was a problem, and they said no but you may have decreased performance issues, I walked out without ordering a new IMA battery system. My gas mileage has been regularly around 45+ mpg, but in the last couple of weeks it has dropped to 41-42 mpgs. I am unsure if the IMA issue is to blame.

    Concerned about not knowing enough, I googled the problem and I found this forum and here I am. After reading many issues with HCH IMA, particularly for 2006 HCH, I sense that my need to replace the battery any time soon is not a priority (perhaps I am wrong). I also see I may need to take it to my local corner gas station mechanic who is damn good, and have it put it on his computer so I can get a "second opinion". I should have taken it to him for the first opinion but I guess I was worried about the IMA system problem being too complicated for him.

    My plans. I am not going to replace the entire IMA battery system unless there is overwhelming need to do so since I do not want to spend almost $3800.

    1. Any thoughts from the forum members about the need (safety is my obvious concern) of having to replace the IMA battery system soon?

    2. Can I drive this car, even if the IMA totally fails and use it as a just small gas engine car but with a reduction in mpg performance. There must be reasons this won't work as it seems too easy.

    3. Are there "fixes" either I can do, or my mechanic can do such as: charging up the IMA system when parked (running the RPM to 5000 for several minutes as I believe someone suggested); driving the car and making sure I charge up the IMA by "coasting" down hills as much as possible; other ideas???

    3
  • We have a 2009 Hybrid, and the IMA light came on. The report from the dealer was that the battery was bad, and needed to be replaced! (Seems a bit premature; have had the car about three months!) The part is backordered, and could be 3 - 4 weeks. We know of one other local owner with the same problem. It was replaced, and then the replacement went bad a few days later. Even the dealer mentioned the word "lemon."

    We have been fortunate with our dealer. They gave us a free rental (new Civic, non-hybrid), without any questions.

    But this suggests that there is a problem with this component. And from reading the other posts here, it is not a new problem. How do we get Honda's attention?
  • grandtotalgrandtotal Posts: 1,207
    I'd say you already have Honda's attention. Sounds like you have a dealer who is working with you. If I were you I'd wait as patiently as I could for my car to be repaired then drive it. I expect that there is a good chance you will not have a recurrence. If you do then that is the time to look at what to do next. In the meantime it would be sensible to make sure you document what happens, just in case.
  • tonitotonito Posts: 4
    You most probably have not much option, other than replacing the battery.
    My HCH 2003 started with IMA and Check Engine lights turning on very frequently (like 20 or 30 miles after resetting the computer). Several months ago it was not so frequent.
    Gas mileage also gradually has dropped from around 45 to 42 or less.
    I had to take it to the Dealer, because in this condition the car does not pass the State Inspection tests. The computer codes do not have enough time to become ready.
    They are replacing the IMA battery for $2760 and possibly the control module if needed (for another $1800 or so).
    My car has 96000 miles on it and I am in Texas, so my IMA battery is out of warranty. However, the new battery will have a 3 year/36000 miles warranty only.
    I wonder if the warranty period for replaced IMA batteries is like this in other places.
    Also they said that there is a "core" cost of more than $3,000 if I want to keep the old battery!
  • Hey all,

    Thought I would post on here a quick synopsis of my Honda story. It's similar to a lot of others issues that have posted on the forum as well. For the first 50,000 miles my car got roughly 42-45mpg on average. Then over a 2-3 week time period it drastically decreased and is only getting 32-34mpg on average.

    1. I took my car to local dealership and told there was not a problem. I thought to myself ok it's not too bad yet I will just keep an eye on it. Of course it got worse, so...

    2. Take my car back to dealership. They tell me they duplicated my issue. Called Honda tech line who told them they were working on a car with almost the same issue. Tech line told them they replaced the battery and loaded new software into the car but neither one fixed the problem. The dealership's resolution was to WAIT for a fix? Hmmm.

    3. Called honda corporate. Was told to get a "second opinion" so I took my car to the only other dealership in Tucson, AZ (Dobbs Honda) who told me they also duplicated my problem, called Honda tech line, Tech line faxed them a Questionnaire surrounding my problem that I needed to fill out so they could fax back to them and then I needed to wait.

    4. Called Honda corporate back, was asssigned a case manager who I spoke with about my IMA issues (just like everyone else is having here) and he said he would talk to the dealerships and tech line then get back to me within 1 week. He called me back and told me my car was "operating within normal circumstances" and that there was nothing wrong with it. Heat can cause it to start its safety feature which automatically turns itself off so it doesnt get damaged, etc. He also told me to read page 76 (I think that's the page) of my manual.

    5. I stayed in contact with him (Morris is his name, my case manager) over several months, continued called and expressing my dissatisfaction. Finally today he called me back again and I had a rather lengthy discussion with him. Told him I wanted either my car replaced or a $4000 credit applied to the remainder of my loan because if I wanted Civic EX gas mileage then I would have purchased a Civic EX for $4000 less than a Hybrid. He basically told me to screw myself, wouldn't give me his supervisor's name and extension, etc, etc.

    I told him I was going to no longer purchase Honda products, no longer refer people to Honda, no longer get my 2 Honda's serviced at Honda dealerships, file a NHTSA safety complaint, file a BBB complaint because I was blatantly lied to regarding Honda tech line's MYTH car that EVERYONE is told they have worked on, consistently send letters to corporate, my local dealership, and finally contact KGUN 9 News on your side here in Tucson, AZ to try and get my story aired.

    After coming across this forum I decided that I am indeed going to do each and everyone of these things, but I also might speak with a lawyer regarding a class action lawsuit because it seems that there are more of us out there than I had expected!

    Thanks for listening to my story,

    Sean
    Tucson, AZ
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,800
    "My car has 96000 miles on it and I am in Texas, so my IMA battery is out of warranty. However, the new battery will have a 3 year/36000 miles warranty only.
    I wonder if the warranty period for replaced IMA batteries is like this in other places. "

    There is a Federal law that requires a minimum of 8 years / 100K miles on the hybrid components, which includes the main traction battery. So your battery replacement should be under warranty. I am pretty sure this warranty applies to all hybrids built after 2004, but I'm not sure about before that.

    CARB states are provided with a 10 year / 150K warranty on the hybrid components.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,800
    "2. Can I drive this car, even if the IMA totally fails and use it as a just small gas engine car but with a reduction in mpg performance. There must be reasons this won't work as it seems too easy. "

    The only real advantage to IMA over a dual mode hybrid is that it doesn't interfere with the powertrain if the battery stops functioning. So in theory you could drive it, at least for a while, without the battery. But I wouldn't recommend it - the vehicle was really meant for hybrid driving, not ICE driving, and besides 1.3L is just a DOG without the IMA...
  • We have our replaced battery now, and it does work. However, we have not seen any improvement in mpg. Now, to be fair, this is Minnesota, and this one of the coldest winters in the last 15 years, but I would have expected a new hybrid to do better than my 2000 Civic LX, which dropped down to 28 mpg at the "height" of the cold snap. (On a separate topic, my LX refused to start for the first time . . . but at -25, I suppose I can cut is some slack for once!) The hybrid seems to be in the upper 20's mpg around town. The dealer was unaware of any similar complaints, but said to bring it in to be looked at.

    Anybody else seeing a significant drop off in mpg in cold weather? Note: I will excuse the Phoenix posters from offering any insights or snide comments. :)
  • My battery is toast too at 127K miles. I have the dreaded P1447 error: replace your battery pack. I was told $2700 by Honda here in upstate NY, with around $300 of that is labor. I tried to reset the condition by disconnecting the engine's battery three times but after the 50-70 system test miles the IMA and check engine light come on. Today while driving when the IMA & engine light went on, later on I noticed the IMA light is off with the check engine light remaining on. Hmm...

    And naturally my car inspection is overdue. My garage won't pass it with the error. So now I have no inspection sticker with the car totally drivable getting 45 mpg in January and I have the dumb error that I now have to address very soon.

    I am wondering about the ebay used batteries for sale, or a junk yard's... besides very limited guarantees and saving quite a bit of $$$, anythng else to consider? How heavy is the battery pack? How difficult would it be for an intermediate level mechanic (me) to change the battery pack? If one ensures the battery's big power switch is off while one works, how hard/dangerous can this be to change? Any other alternatives possible?
  • MB,

    We bought a 2009 HCH and live in Fargo. I was driving home from work at -37 (-53 windchill) driving 57mph at light throttle on level terrain (is there any other in ND). My IMA/check engine lights came on at this point. The engine temp was about 1/2 its optimum temperature (3-4 bars).

    I took it into the dealer (Corwin Honda) and found the battery had failed to communicate to the computer. The batteries would still charge and assist, but there was a point that triggered the error codes. Corwin removed the codes, drove the car for 20 minutes attempting to recode the battery failure, and gave us a questionnaire to fill out if this were to happen again so they can send documentation to Corporate Honda for testing.

    I suggested it might not be a bad idea to test vehicles in the upper midwest during winter, as they are also tested in extreme heat down in AZ or CA. So far I have been achieving between 35 and 45 mpg. This depends on how I drive (typically no faster than 70 with a light throttle and driving by the econ instead of the speedometer) and how long I have let the car run idle, as this will decrease the displayed mpg in the dash. If I am in no hurry and do this carefully, I can achieve 60 mpg on the interstate with speeds up to 65 mph, slight tail wind, no CC, and above 0 degree weather.

    Hopefully this does not occur again, but I am ready with a record book of my driving habits so I can best determine the drivability during the time of computer coding. Cold weather will drop fuel mileage no matter what simply because of the air density and heat transfer between gradients inside the cylinder heads. One idea I have is to tie in a heated battery blanket into a block heater cord, so that when the car is plugged in both the engine block and battery bank "preheat."

    Perhaps someday infrared technology will be used for window defrosters and solar power technology can keep the powertrain warm before travel. Being an engineer, I can always dream of the future, because it will never be the same come the next sunrise.
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