[aprssig] Prius Battery Life and Replacement Cost

James Lovell jalovell at verizon.net
Sun Aug 26 08:04:48 CDT 2007


How well does your Insight manage air conditioning and heating?


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "bob evinger" <wd9eka at evinger.com>
To: "TAPR APRS Mailing List" <aprssig at lists.tapr.org>
Sent: Sunday, August 26, 2007 12:24 AM
Subject: Re: [aprssig] Prius Battery Life and Replacement Cost

> Dust to dust cost being more than a HUMvee, I would like to see or read
> that report because my personal experience would seem to dispute that,
> but then I dont have personal experience with a humvee.....
> I do not have a prius.. I DO have a honda insight and have had it 7
> years. I bought it new, had about 100 miles on it when I got it.  I have
> put approximately 114,000 miles on it. I have had no realistically
> unexpected service costs with it to date.
> I keep track of every piece of work I do on it.
> I managed to get approximately 55,000 miles on a set of the potenza
> tires. I just now put my third set on earlier this summer.
> I did not have to replace the front brake pads until 110,000 and still
> have plenty of pad on the back shoes.  I do use the regenerative braking
> considerably(obviously). I had to replace the front rotors because
> something about the way I lightly brake actually caused wear that didnt
> trip the  noise makers up front and I was into the rotor before I
> realized it(but got reasonably priced rotors at NAPA( $20 a piece I
> think).
> I had a recall with the ECM very early on that my vehicle was part of.
> Had a loose hi voltage battery connection somewhere in the system that
> caused an IMA(hybrid) error condition that they had to look at around
> the same time as the ECM problem. That is the only time the dealer has
> ever laid their hands on it.
> whoops, I did have the primary O2 sensor bite the dust at about 105,000
> miles but that seems to be the average mileage for that sensor
> apparently on the insight. Car still ran mostly normal, autozone ran the
> code, but didnt have the best price on the sensor. It is expensive, but
> NAPA only wanted close to  1/2 what I think mother Honda wanted. Without
> pulling the program up I think the sensor was around 280, honda listed
> it up in the high 400's I think.
> I do my own maintenance(fluids, rotations literally just about
> everything). unless something really nasty blows up which so far, knock
> on wood, has not happened. I changed the rotors and pads when they
> needed it, did the O2 sensor change.  But hey I build my own airplane
> too so its all relative.
> i will admit that the High voltage battery pack is getting pretty weak
> but it has not yet tripped any check engine or IMA lights long enough
> for me to take it in. I probably should take it in though and have them
> check for codes as there were a couple times earlier in the summer where
> I had IMA drop out on long drives but cleared on its own later.
> Honda extended the IMA warranty on the insights to 10 years or 150,000
> miles so I basically have another 3 years before it becomes a concern.
> This warranty extension to 10 years is official, I've seen the extension
> paperwork and checked with my local dealership to confirm that mine is
> covered by it.
> I initially was getting honest +70mpg trips on the highway with a few
> 85mpg trips over a 400 mile route to the Peoria hamfest and back. These
> days its averaging more in the high 50's to low 60mpg range. I can still
> live with that though.
> so at least from my hybrid experience I have a real hard time believing
> that the "dust to dust" cost of a hybrid is more than a humvee. Maybe it
> is because I am thinking on the maintenance side, or the report was
> comparing some hybridized suv where the gas mileage difference wouldnt
> be as noticeable?
> I am not 100% sure I would buy another hybrid but its not because of
> maintenance costs or any other tangible. But it has made me set my sites
> high.  Basically the government shuffling their feet over CAFE standards
> to me is a joke. I have a personal fuel efficiency standard for my day
> to day personal operation of it needs to get over 40 mpg. I ride m/c's a
> big chunk of the year when I am not in the insight(raining, snowing,
> icy, just plain nasty temps, i.e. below 20F) and those get less mileage
> than the insight, 48mpg or so, but the "mental therapy" I get from them
> far outweighs the 10+mpg difference.
> I can honestly say I still love my Insight. i swore when I bought it
> that I would drive the wheels off of it. I'm paying for a new m/c now so
> I have to make it last at least until I get the 2 wheeler paid off.
> bob evinger
> On Sat, 2007-08-25 at 20:49 -0700, Dale Blanchard wrote:
>> Ray McKnight wrote:
>> >
>> > After watching "Who Killed the Electric Car", the subject of the
>> > Prius came up.  We all love the concept of the Prius, but not so much
>> > Most of the other hybrids that fail to get much better mileage than
>> > A Corolla.  But the big debate revolves around battery life.  Toyota
>> > And most everyone else all promise the batteries will last "the life
>> > Of the car", but are not warranted past 100,000 miles.  10 years is 
>> > also
>> > Murmured a lot as well.  Everyone has horror stories of rechargeable 
>> > battery
>> > Failure, it's not a question of if, just when.  Given that a Prius with
>> > A bad battery is basically useless and will have near-zero resale 
>> > value.
>> > The replacement cost has been quoted at anywhere between $5,500 to over
>> > $7,500 (I think Ford's are up at the top end of this range).  So will
>> > Prius be a throw-away 100,000 car?  Who knows for sure if the batteries
>> > Can survive high mileage or longer than 10 years?  Will it be cost 
>> > effective
>> > To sink such a large amount of money replacing batt's in a 10+ year old
>> > Vehicle?  All of this has caused most of my debating friends conclude 
>> > that
>> > Given the high initial acquisition cost, the cost/mile of ownership 
>> > will
>> > Eventually be several times higher than a car with 35+mpg costing under
>> > $18,000.  And, no, I am not ignoring the environmental considerations.
>> > Comments?
>> >
>> > Ray - WB3ABN
>> > Kingston, WA
>> >
>> I read a report (don't know here it is now) that the Dust to Dust life
>> cost of operating a Hybrid is more than a Humvee.
>> This took in the consideration of total longevity of each and all costs
>> involved.
>> Dale
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