I have replaced my 2001 Honda Insight pack once, rebuilt it once, and I'm soon
to rebuild it again (260K miles). I found these people who are actually local
to me. https://bumblebeebatteries.com/products/honda-hybrid-batteries/. They
rebuild Honda Insight packs using brand new batteries which are spec'd higher
than the originals. They do this by having people send in their old packs,
which means they have all the old cells lying around. It's been a few years,
but I think I bought a pack of used cells from them for $200 then I used my MCM
Super Brain charger to cycle and capacity test the individual sticks. The
process takes weeks to go through a whole pack, but in the end you can pick out
your 20 best sticks and use them to rebuild your battery pack which will get
you a couple of years more worth of driving before the car starts throwing
codes again 😊
They also offered to sell me a full pack worth of brand new replacement
batteries for $1800, or of course you can use their full rebuild service.
Pricing and options might have changed, but they responded in short order when
I contacted them.
From: EV <ev-boun...@lists.evdl.org> on behalf of Lee Hart via EV
Sent: Wednesday, May 23, 2018 9:04 AM
To: Electric Vehicle Discussion List
Cc: Lee Hart
Subject: Re: [EVDL] Honda Insight Lithium Upgrade
From: George Tyler via EV <email@example.com>
>I have been considering this too, but for some old Priuses I have. It is not
>easy! Equallisation is done by overcharging the full cells at 10-15A, can't
>do that with Lithium! With these cells, which are the same as my prius ones,
>overcharging is allowed. Also, even with Ni-Mih they are degraded by
>continuous overcharging, and is the reason they fail so often. I have
>considered making another battery computer with a BMS that handles the new
>battery, could either replace the old one, or you could keep both, and
>generate voltages the old computer expects, drop the voltage with a divider
>to make it believe the battery is low when it really is, and boost it when
>the battery is full to make it stop charging. I would use Li-po4 cells for
>the flatter discharge curve.
I have the same situation; a 2001 Prius that runs fine, but needs a hybrid
battery. I've bought 100+ modules, but they are all so old that it's not
possible to assemble a "good as new" pack. In my case, I am going to try
replacing them with modules from two packs of modules from newer Priuses (the
2001-2003 used more modules, and of a different size).
Maybe it would be possible to use Prius modules in the Insight? It would be a
lot of work to build a new battery box; but at least they are available and
built for the job.
Or, D-size cylindrical nimh cells as used the the insight modules can still be
bought new. I suspect that new ones will be of much lower quality and
performance, but might work well enough?
Changing to lithium is an even bigger project. Not one to be tacked by a casual
hacker or some fast-buck outfit. A bad solution is relatively easy; but one
that will last and not set your car on fire is hard!
Excellence does not require perfection. -- Henry James
Lee A. Hart
Please discuss EV drag racing at NEDRA
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