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Old 11-12-2015, 11:59 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Location: New Mexico
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Honda - '03 Honda Civic Hybrid

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new IMA battery, recognized by car, but not charging?

Quick overview: my 2003 HCH IMA battery died for a second time around 165K miles. We then drove it until it wouldn't go anymore -- the 12V was no longer being charged so it wouldn't make it far even if we got it started. We got 20K more miles out of it after the IMA light came on, not too bad.

I have a manual transmission. First battery died at 65K but was replaced under warranty. I bought a battery from Green Tec Auto (via ebay) and had our local mechanic install it. He hasn't worked on civic hybrids before.

New battery installed, and the IMA light went away, and the car runs again. The 12V light comes on everytime we cruise or come to a stop but it is getting charged or whatever while pressing on the gas.

Anyway I don't think the IMA system is working, as in, I'm not getting any battery assist when driving. The battery level shows no bars, the charge light only came on once briefly when I tried revving the engine once (then stopped). I can't feel the regenerative braking, and the car is very underpowered.

We've driven it around and tried revving it to 3500 rpm while parked. This morning my husband tried S Keith's advice from another thread to disconnect the 12V, wait 30 sec, reconnect and start the car and rev to 3500. He said it didn't charge.

I tried S Keith's advice from another thread:
Originally Posted by S Keith View Post
If the IMA light is out, the car recognizes the battery. The BCM just has no idea of its state of charge as resting voltage does not correlate to state of charge, so it shows zero. If the IMA light is still on, you have other problems.

There are no issues with shoving a fully charged pack in a car. If you can, it's best to let the voltage stabilize over 30-60 minutes (maybe overnight), but two weeks is excessive.

Disconnect 12V for 30 seconds. Reconnect. Start and rev to 3500rpm and hold until you read full bars. You will need to drive it as you will show DTC not ready when you go to emissions, which will be the case no matter how you reset the codes.
Does anyone have any other suggestions? If I can't find a few other things to try I'll take it to the dealer or to a hybrid tech (I just found one in ABQ but that is 100 miles away from me, dealer is 40 mi away). I feel like I'm in the book Strega Nona where we just don't know the secret to stop the magic pasta pot.

One last thing: I don't know the state of charge of the battery. Definitely worth mentioning. I'm guessing it's mostly charged. The battery I bought was through a third party. They bought the new battery for their 03 HCH, but something else was majorly wrong with the car so they junked the car and resold the battery. I'm trusting they were telling the truth. It is definitely better than my old battery, though. They didn't know the state of charge, but I'm thinking it shipped fully charged.

Last edited by rpearson; 11-12-2015 at 12:05 PM.. Reason: found a hybrid tech in my state
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