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Old 04-19-2011, 03:57 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post

Potentially good news: the hybrid battery may not be quite as toast as I originally thought.

In January, the original owner decided to ditch the car primarily because the dreaded IMA light came on and a check engine light appeared with code P1449. The dealer quoted ~$3K for a replacement pack.
  • The IMA light was on & accompanied by a lack of assist, regen or charging via the ICE. However the DC/DC converter continued working (to supply power to the 12v system) and the engine continued to start from the IMA motor rather than the 12v "backup" starter.

    Because IMA was offline, the pack state of charge has been steadily falling since Jan. At the time the car was taken off the road, I'm told there were approx. 15/20 bars showing on the dash battery gauge. When I got the car last week, there was one bar showing. This change would be due to both self-discharge and from the IMA system starting up the ICE, I assume.
  • The P1449 code relates to the IMA battery. From what I've been able to gather, it's thrown for a number of potential issues:

    - cell over 80C for at least 2 seconds
    - pack out of balance (weak cell/s)
    - shorted cell
Clearing the code via the ScanGauge & resetting the CEL didn't help. Immediately after starting the engine, the charging display would briefly (for ~1 second) show up to 4 bars of charging. Then the CEL & IMA lights would come back on and charging would cease. Back to square one!

Resetting the entire system, however, seems to have temporarily solved the problem. I read that disconnecting the 12v battery could help in a P1449 situation, so I gave it a try this evening.

And it worked!

Upon restarting the ICE, the dash showed 4 bars of charging while idling, and the battery gauge started adding bars. After idling & driving the car for ~15 minutes, the pack was up to ~15 bars.

Driving gently, I saw & felt both assist and regen working. After 20 km the CEL or IMA lights have yet to come on again. The pack got as high as 19 bars, and as low as 17 during the drive.

So! While I may not have a completely toasted pack on my plate, obviously there is still some very warm bread. At a minimum, this reset "trick" may allow me to get the car through safety inspection with all green lights on the dashboard (so to speak), and then I can worry about the pack later.

Please consider a HV grid charger before putting anymore miles on it. Contact Ron @ Hybrid battery repair Hybrid-Battery-Repair.
Your not doing you battery any favors, it is unbalanced. A drop in rebuilt is ~$1,200.
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