My 2007 Civic Hybrid is having trouble starting. This happens when it’s cold out, it’s been sitting outside overnight (I don’t have a garage), and the IMA battery is low. I’ve taken it to the dealership but they were not surprisingly no help. The car has about 65,000 miles and a new battery - the one in front - was put in not too long ago and tests fine. Any ideas?
“Trouble Starting” Is Pretty Vague.
Please describe the symptoms.
Does the engine crank over more slowly or have trouble cranking at all, prior to starting ?
Does the engine crank OK, but not fire up right away ?
Once it starts does it immediately run well ?
Any warning lights illuminated ?
It isn’t cranking and cranking, it just takes two or three tries. Once it starts it’s fine for the rest of the day. The only pattern i can see is that it happens on a cold morning when the hybrid battery reads low. No warning lights. Thanks!
The IMA is the starter motor for this car so if the hybrid battery is low, it will probably crank a little more slowly and that can make it harder to start. Sometimes what happens in cold weather is that the battery is cold, so it puts out less current. The first time you crank it, the current flow through the battery heats the battery up a little. The extra heat makes more current available for the second time you crank it, so it cranks a little faster. Might take a third attempt on really cold days.
UPDATE: Two days before I was to pick up a new car that the Honda Civic Hybrid was going to be traded for, the IMA battery did go out on the HCH. Fortunately, the dealership where I was getting my new car was unfazed (after all, they are getting a car with a new IMA battery, I suppose, and they are selling the car on). Honda to replace it under warranty since I had only had the car for five years and had 66,000 miles on it. So the moral of the story is that if you have a gut feeling your battery could be going, listen to your gut.