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I’ve had my 2012 CRZ for a few hundred miles now. It’s my third Honda Hybrid and there was a plethora of information on the internet and forums about how to extend and ‘bring back to life’ of the IMA battery for the others.
I’ve conducted a search of the forum but haven’t come across what I’m wanting to know.
-Is it best for the health of the battery to fully depleted and fully charge it on occasion?

- Are many people putting pigtails on their batteries to discharge and recharge them without needing to take the battery out?

-Is the battery pretty easy to get to like the Insight and the Civic from the early 2000s?

- Are the batteries made up of the same type of battery sticks as the older ones?

Just trying toget a plan together for how best to get the most from mine.

Thanks in advance for any advise.

Matt
 

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Most if not all of your questions were answered in your first post. The batteries in an Insight are not interchangeable for a CR-Z. We just drive our cars and don't worry about it. Not one member here has mentioned charging the car via any other means other than driving it.

Earlier CR-Zs I think are Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) battery packs ( but I am not sure ) later (2013 and up) are LI-ION. And no you cannot put the newer battery in the older car.

Being that you have owned more Honda Hybrids than any of us you should know how to keep it alive.

Just drive it often and either replace or load test the under hood battery often.

As I stated before Not one member of this forum has replaced the IMA Battery in a CR-Z. One member got rid of his car due to bad troubleshooting and being told without diagnosis his car would need over $3k of parts. Another member replaced the battery in an Insight. Some have replaced the IPU Fan others have replaced DC to DC converters and some may have replaced both.

A few members have done Kswaps and got rid of their battery.

Best way to extend the life of the IMA battery is to drive the car at least 30 minutes a month(continuous drive). This will help both the IMA and the under hood battery. If you get any odd lights or warnings either change the under hood battery or at least have it load tested( with the car not running).
 

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2010 to 2012 models have Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) battery packs - they have a lower energy density so are less powerful than the Lithium Ion in 2013 onwards and you don't get the S+ button on the later cars. On the plus side the batteries are cheaper to replace if and when it ever becomes necessary (I got quotes from Honda when investigating a CR-Z).

The first cars are coming up to 10 years old now and I've seen CR-Z's mentioned with 150 to 200,000 miles on them so the batteries packs are lasting well and if/when we start hearing of owners installing new packs it might still be worth the investment for another decade of driving.
 

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well, I have a 2014 CRZ that has 283,xxx plus miles on it...I drive it in sport all time. As it drains the battery less than other modes. The more often you cycle a battery i.e. drain it...the shorter the life span. Mine stays almost at full charge all the time.
 

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Isn't it better to exercise the battery rather then what you are doing? Isn't that why they say to drive them at least 30 minutes a month? Using it should not lower the life span it should actually lengthen it. At least that is my understanding of how batteries work.
 

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for Lithium models:
Its bad to keep the pack full all the time, (its why you'll see parallel 18650 packs in laptops go bad while the owners are like 'i keep it plugged in all the time') also though, the crz is known to have some slight overcharge issues in its design which can affect the cell health if you somehow keep it at 'all bars - all the time', you really only get all bars under very specific driving conditions though, normally the BMS will expend excess keeping the bars between level of '3' and '1 less than all bars' which is good percentages, provided its regularly variable throughout ownership.

It is also bad to leave the car long term under 30% of battery capacity (this might actually be 1 or 0 bars on the display depending on the cars design) across the cells (anything more than a few days imo), this causes crystalline hole puncturing in the polymer wall and irreversible voltage bleeding then occurs inside the cells and they will degrade and not hold charge at all quick.

I suppose best case scenario for the lithium cells would be intermittent full charges, and occasional full discharges provided both states are not constant, regular driving does tend the fall under this category, and while they do have a limited discharge cycle, there's no real way to extend that, usually one cell does tend to go bad sooner than the rest (even under the best usage conditions parts of the pack might have heat spots compared to other parts) which can bring the reliability down to a point where you will eventually get an IMA code.

The nickel ones are similar in some ways but differ in others - their charge cycle count (iirc i think its better) and density (is worse) and Ni may not necessarily suffer from the same under charge storage condition as lithium does, but nickel ones do fair better when they're fully discharge cycled semi regularly compared to lithium where that factor is not an issue under 30 percent.

For the OP: you seem to be very familiar with hybrids, so you know if one of your cells degrade it is possible to replace the pack with reconditioned ones, just like on any other hybrid including prius's the process is mostly the same, same safety precautions, etc maybe slightly different panels to remove. which is nice to know since the dealer charges a staggering amount more to do it all for you in the event your pack goes bad. as alot of members here say tho, its rare for packs to go bad, their longevity seems for the most part incredibly good and robust, and we're lucky to be able to for the most part, not worry about it :)
 

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It does seem that Honda made the IMA system pretty idiot proof. Just as well really as you say because there is so much conflicting advise on batteries and management practices that it is best not left down to humans to manage.

I'd imagine there are extra cells or stoarage capacity in the packs than what is allowed it be accessed day to day and that the software (no doubt different versions of software for NiMH and Lithium based cars) is designed to adapt to the changes in the cells chemistry over time (once in a while the car does seem to re-calibrate). It's not easy to keep maximum bars or to run them right down during regular driving (mostly I see 6 or 7 bars and down to 5 with a burst of acceleration when commuting).

At least with the IMA being only a boost the batteries are a relatively small capacity and it might make them worth replacing if and when they do reach their limit. I like by used in good condition, own them outright and get the most life possible from cars and with the full electric cars today the whole car is basically considered disposable due to the cost of all the batteries.
 
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