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Hybrid Vehicle Maintenance, Repair and Concerns

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Comments

  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    It takes a while for the new tires to become 'broken in'. Many report significantly lower fuel economy after putting on new shoes. The tire is heavier because it has more tread and the thicker tread grips better ( more friction ). A temporary loss of 10% in fuel economy is not unusual.

    Watch after 5000 miles.
  • whitey9whitey9 Posts: 138
    It is difficult for me to fathom how ANY drop in fuel economy could ever be TEMPORARY with the replacement of tires.
    I would expect that loss to be permanent.
    If the replacements are less efficient, then I would fully expect the drop to be permanent.
    By less efficient, I mean in terms of rolling resistance.
    I have seen estimates of from 2%, up to 25% of total fuel economy.
    That indeed seems like a very wide varience.
  • xkmail1xkmail1 Posts: 3
    I have the gas receipts and mileage to show that statement about mpg coming up is false.
    I have now over 5000 miles on my costco michelin x radials.
    MPG when pulling in to replace tires, average 40-43mpg, straight highway driving at 60-65mph 43 constant, one trip to san diego from los angeles doing 60mph was 58mpg, 118 miles traveled about 2 gallons of gas.
    The next tank 30mpg, now 4 months later over 5000 miles at 32mpg~.
    On a 3000 lbs car the actual tire losing less than an ounce or two of weight has no scientific or practical reasoning to gain back 10mpg.
    The costco michelins saved me about $150 over the dunlops.
    Each tank of gas with the michelins is costing me $8 more, In 4 months I have allready lost my savings on the cheaper tire, and used up non-reusable natural resources.
    The stock dunlops rock!
    If I wasn't so broke I would go to americas tire and get the 4 stock dunlops.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    How might a person know if there is confusion here between Causation and merely Correlation? Maybe something happened to the car at the same time the tires were installed...in other words, maybe 2+2 =5 in this case? That's a formidable drop in MPG. Unless the replacement tires were a) much wider and b) put on MUCH larger diameter specialty wheels (which can really eat into MPG) I'm really surprised that this could happen just with a tire brand switch.

    But live and learn. I guess you could switch back to original tires to prove or disprove the theory.

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  • galileo5galileo5 Posts: 10
    I saw Honda announce that, too, on its official press release, but from all the Insight test-drive reports I read online, they all say that it cannot run on electric-mode alone.

    The gas shuts off on the Insight only when it comes to a complete stop or when you're rolling downhill.

    That is the difference b/t a mild hybrid (Insight) and a full hybrid (Prius).
  • whitey9whitey9 Posts: 138
    My understanding of the Insight 2 system is that it is more-or-less identical to the current Civic system.
    A cost-saving design.
  • lokkilokki Posts: 1,200
    http://www.seattleweekly.com/2009-04-22/news/the-flip-side-of-the-perfect-prius/- 4

    Stories from other Prius owners involving unintended acceleration are fairly common,

    Isn't this a fine Audi-do...?

    Any one have have personal experiences?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    There's always one part of these stories that I cannot accept---I can accept the idea of the car's accelerator getting stuck for whatever reason. I can even accept the car accelerating on its own possibly due to a faulty cruise control module, etc.

    But I can't accept that people cannot stop the car by slamming on the brakes.

    For this to happen would require the simultaneous failure of 2 or 3 systems on the car which are not directly connected to each other.

    This part doesn't add up.

    You will note that in the "reporter's story" he did in fact stop the car with the brakes and didn't hit anything. Even that story was kind of fishy, because he depicts himself casually pointing out to the salesman that the car is accelerating on its own. Maybe he's that cool under fire, I don't know.

    Right now I'm thinking that yes, the cars might have a sticking throttle issue but that the driver's are stomping on the wrong pedal while in panic mode (which I myself might do--it's not a "fault" for the driver to do this).

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  • tiff_ctiff_c Posts: 531
    But I can't accept that people cannot stop the car by slamming on the brakes

    That is because you have never had unintended acceleration. I have! It was in a 1980's Ford LTD. I had witnesses outside the car many of them. But I have long since refused to discuss it since everyone will call you a liar.
    Oh and I had no floor mats in that car either. It's happened to cops, doctors, lots of people but having had it happen you get lumped in with people who have seen UFO's or seen Bigfoot.
    The brakes do not work when the engine is at wide open throttle. Believe what you want. The auto industry has been covering up this problem for many many years.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    I wasn't at the scene, so I can't judge what really happened.

    A car at WOT can be stopped in various ways, that's all I'm suggesting.

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  • tiff_ctiff_c Posts: 531
    A car at WOT can be stopped in various ways, that's all I'm suggesting.

    Well I used to drag race and for a short while I did some stock car racing a few years before that as well as a handful of Demolition derby events (held on the infield) at the stock car track. So I think I have a good idea of what it takes to stop a car at WOT. But when you're out on the road, you've been hit bad and you are facing large trucks and cars coming at you as well as buildings. It's a whole different game. That's why I hate automatics to this day.
    It's easy to say it doesn't happen but when it does it's bad and virtually everyone will call you a liar. Those Cop interceptors were pretty damn fast in their day, at WOT they were a handful. As I said plenty of witnesses and all were ignored. Thankfully the guy who hit me lived as did I.
    You don't have time to turn the key or bang it into neutral, I know I tried, you need both hands on the wheel at that point.
    I was finally able to spin the car out and hit neutral before I jumped out. Lots of witnesses. They all saw and heard what happened. The cops didn't take any statements from anyone and moved the car from the scene even tho it was at the side of a building not blocking anything.
  • tiff_ctiff_c Posts: 531
    A car at WOT can be stopped in various ways, that's all I'm suggesting.

    Well I used to drag race and for a short while I did some stock car racing a few years before that as well as a handful of Demolition derby events (held on the infield) at the stock car track. So I think I have a good idea of what it takes to stop a car at WOT. But when you're out on the road, you've been hit bad and you are facing large trucks and cars coming at you as well as buildings. It's a whole different game. That's why I hate automatics to this day.
    It's easy to say it doesn't happen but when it does it's bad and virtually everyone will call you a liar. Those Cop interceptors were pretty damn fast in their day, at WOT they were a handful. As I said plenty of witnesses and all were ignored. Thankfully the guy who hit me lived as did I.
    You don't have time to turn the key or bang it into neutral, I know I tried, you need both hands on the wheel at that point.
    I was finally able to spin the car out and hit neutral before I jumped out. Lots of witnesses. They all saw and heard what happened. The cops didn't take any statements from anyone and moved the car from the scene even tho it was at the side of a building not blocking anything.
  • tiff_ctiff_c Posts: 531
    As I said reliving that moment is difficult for me. 2 people nearly died.
    Believe what you want, it's not easy to stop a high HP automatic car at WOT.
    It's off topic and I'm happy to drop it at this point.
  • whitey9whitey9 Posts: 138
    I remember I had a runaway while driving a '72 M-B 280SEL 4.5L.
    The car was part of a recall. A little plastic bushing in a part of the accel linkage deteriorated and the throttle becamed jammed after I popped it during a test drive.
    I immediately jammed hard on the brakes while noticing the cinder-block wall ahead becoming closer, and closer.
    The front brakes locked, but the rear wheels continued to spin on the damp pavement. Onward and closer to the wall I sped.
    Then, in a flash of panic, I reached forward and switched off the ignition.
    The parking/emergency brake was of little use, as it was the old-type that required pulling on a handle.
    Besides, if the V-8 engine was able to overpower the rear brakes, then the parking brake would not help at all.
    The whole thing came to a stinking, smoking stop just yards short of the building wall.
    I immediately ordered, and then replaced the neoprene bushing with the modified metal version.
    I could hear my heart pounding in my ears. My breathing was short and checked.
    It was a heck of an experience!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    Is the Prius completely electronic throttle or is there linkage? I don't have one to look at, at the moment, and I've driven them extensively but never much examined them mechanically.

    I have still never heard an adequate explanation of how an electronically throttled car could go WOT from idle at a stoplight. That would be interesting to hear, as a theoretical problem, from an engineer who might know.

    A mechanical throttle like your Benz would only stick as far as you stepped on it---although I could see a spring failure causing you to go WOT when you didn't want to.

    But as you say, all you have to do is switch off the ignition. It's a good thing for everyone to practice actually. This is why race cars have a big red ignition shut off in easy reach.

    The Prius power button isn't too hard to reach...if you remember to do it.

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  • jmt4jmt4 Posts: 1
    I have a Honda Civic Hybrid (2003). My air conditioner will quit cooling after about 20-30 minutes of driving. This is a sporadic problem and seems to occur more on a warm day. It will not cool again until the car has been off for an hour or more. Turning of the a/c for an hour while still driving does nothing.

    I went to the Honda Dealership about 3 to 4 weeks ago. It did not fail for them and they tested the a/c - checking the freon, hoses, connections, and used their guages, etc. They recommended we try replacing a relay as they thought it might be overheating. They did not know if it would work or not. So, we tried that and it has not worked. They also said they did not know what it could be if the relay did not work. So, I'm not real confident about going back there. Any ideas on what the problem could be? Should I go to a different Honda dealership or try one of the local auto repair shops?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    You should take it to an AC specialist shop. Could be the expansion valve or the compressor could be freezing up. There are a number of good possibilities. The dealer's guess wasn't a very sensible one IMO.

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  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,600
    I agree with what you've said regarding unintended acceleration, shifty. One thing to consider, though, is if you kill the engine by shutting off the ignition you'd lose the vacuum boost on the power brakes.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    that is true but if you press down with both feet you can stop. It's just a lot harder...and most cars have a vacuum reservoir, so you get a few pumps anyway.

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  • fitnfunfitnfun Posts: 2
    I am purchasing a new Fit and my dealer is trying to sell me an Advent security system for $320, which he claims is at their cost. I'm not really sure what this low end security system does. I can upgrade this system to one that includes an alarm but is $800. I live near an area that has its share of auto thefts. Do I really need an additional security system with alarm or without? Or is this a ripoff? Or would the "standard security system with remote control" that comes with the car be enough?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    If your car is equipped from the factory with an immobilizer type of alarm & security system, these are highly effective (cuts theft about 65%) and I can't see anything else doing a better job UNLESS you install a GPS type of alarm/tracking system (cuts successful theft 95%).

    If you are worried about contents INSIDE the car (sound system, etc) there is no defense against theft. They'll just break your window with a rock, and everyone ignores audible alarms.

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  • fitnfunfitnfun Posts: 2
    Thank you...I was told by the dealer that the car does not come equipped with any system that activates a horn or lights, which is what I think I need. I may need to spring for some type of system that makes noise or flashes lights.
    Good point about the rock...
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    if you have the immobilizer, I think that's all you need. Lights and sirens are really worthless, and I have read that 95% of all audible car alarms are FALSE alarms anyway.

    Which is why everyone, and I do mean everyone, ignores them.

    There are systems that page you if there's an incident. That seems more worthwhile.

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  • whitey9whitey9 Posts: 138
    I am looking at the Honda.com website, and it lists a security system on the Sport model. Standard. Not $800, or even $350.
    I have some 35 year-old Advent speakers. And I know they made a projection TV at one point, but I don't know of any alarm that is added on worth $800.
    If they are going to charge you for some Mickey Mouse alarm system, then I might check into a Sport model. It does cost more that a base model, but in addition to the keyless entry/security system there is more car than a Fit w/o the alarm system.
    Most insurance companies give a discount on your premium if the car has a passive, or active security system.
    I would go with the Honda system, and forget about the HIGH-PROFIT add-on Advent "hodge-podge".
    But then maybe it is allright. Only you will know a year down the road. But it WONT be covered by the factory warranty for the full term.
    To discourage break ins, hide your stuff. Don't tempt them.
    Between the base model, and the Sport, you pick up 2 more speakers, a USB port, cruise control, fog lights, alloy wheels, etc.
  • whitey9whitey9 Posts: 138
    I am sure my life is worth more than ANY Honda Fit. Forget the paging security systems.
    Just hide your stuff, and hope for the best.
    The immobilizer is standard on most cars. Maybe a Federal law. It is built into the key. It prevents the engine from starting. That is the minimum I would consider.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    Immobilizers work very well right from the factory.

    As for paging, I was thinking that you could peek through the blinds and then call the cops, not confront anyone. That's pretty risky.

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  • igandalf2igandalf2 Posts: 5
    I have a 2004 Civic Hybrid with 163,000 miles. I have taken it in for regular servicing, and has run fairly well. I have have one large issue with this vehicle. After about 30,000 miles I noticed the transmission was "slipping" when I would accelerate at higher speeds, typically above 55 mph. I took this to the dealer and paid for them to check it out and diagnose the problem, but to no avail. Finally after about 60,000 miles were on it (I drive about 30,000 miles per year) the dealer and I realized that this didn't happen after the transmission fluid was replaced. So to "fix" this we replaced the transmission fluid at shorter intervals (at my cost). Unfortunately, with the CVT they can only replace about 1/3 of the fluid at the time, so I would actually not have the fluid completely replaced until after 3 servicings, (At $85.00 a pop) This did, however, fix the issue. Aparrently, the older fluid was causing the issue. As the car got older, the transmission began making a quiet grinding noise. I paid to have the dealer check it out. They told me that this was "normal wear and tear". Recently, the noise became much louder. I took it to the dealer to check it out. I now need a new transmission at $3800.00. It only has 163,000 miles on it and it needs a new transmission! Whatever money I saved because of this hybrid's higher mileage, has been poured back into all the service that has had to be performed on this CVT Hybrid. I recently bought a Pilot. I sure hope this works out better... since I can't afford to replace the CVT just yet.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 63,367
    Ah well, too bad, but you know, all things considered, 163,000 for a transmission is just about normal life span.

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  • jqtljrjqtljr Posts: 1
    I have almost 128,000 miles on my Civic Hybrid (2003). I loved my car the first 3 years and I've hated ever since. Started with the same transmission problem that everyone else had ($1900 in repairs) and then moved on to the IMA battery being replaced ($2700 for that). All within 6 months. And of course the IMA replacement came 2 weeks after I lost my job. The battery came in a hazmat truck from California, which got me wondering, what happens to all these hybrid batteries? Are they going to end up in a landfill and cause more pollution?
    Anyway, the car goes back in first thing in the morning because of a weird knocking noise it just started making today. I can't wait until I find a new job so I can unload this piece of crap and go back to a gas engined American car.
  • whitey9whitey9 Posts: 138
    I might have unloaded at 100K mi. When the extended warranty expired.
    I plan on doing so on our Mariner hybrid, and the Prius too.
    Time will tell. We will see.
    I expect if your dealer/city deals with the battery responsibly it will be treated as it should be. Or it will be along the side of the road way out in the county.
    As I said earlier, time will tell.
    Best of luck!
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