The world is going green. At the forefront of this shift is the car industry. More and more people are choosing to buy hybrid vehicles at the expense of conventional gas-powered vehicles. These cars are powered by both an electric and a gasoline motor. The electric motor draws its power from a high-voltage battery pack which in most models is charged through the combination of regenerative braking and the use of the gasoline engine.
As with all batteries, the ones fitted in hybrid cars have a lifespan with most lasting between 100,000 -150,000 miles. Their lifespan notwithstanding, when exposed to the elements, batteries may unexpectedly fail to work. When this happens the big question always is, to replace or repair?
In this post, we discuss the options you have as a hybrid car owner and the best course of action to take when your battery fails.
My hybrid battery died – what caused this?
There are several reasons hybrid car batteries die. The most common one is that your battery has reached the end of its lifespan. As we stated, most hybrid batteries last between 100,000 to 150,000 miles or 8-10 years. The rate of decline is dependent on the model of the car, driving behavior, climate, and build-quality of the battery.
Extreme weather accelerates the degeneration rate of hybrid car batteries. Unfortunately, there is very little you can do to remedy this but to let nature take its course.
How you treat your car also goes a long way in determining the lifespan of your battery. All batteries are negatively affected by frequent charging. Overloading your vehicle will drain energy more rapidly, necessitating the need to charge it many times.
Signs your hybrid car battery is dying
Although uncommon, your battery may ‘just die’ on you without any warning. However, in most cases, you should spot some hints and signs. We recommend taking the necessary action before the worst strikes.
A common sign to show that your battery is nearing its end is if your hybrid car starts using more fuel than normal. The explanation for reduced fuel economy is that your car selects to primarily run on the gasoline engine for optimum driving performance and to also charge the weakening battery.
The second sign is what is called negative battery recalibration. This happens when you park your car on full or near-full battery level then a day or two later return to find it flat. To monitor this, park your car at full or near-full battery level for 24hrs and check the battery level on the first start upon return. A low-battery warning in this scenario is a clear indication of a failing battery.
Another key indication of a dying battery is a negative recalibration occurrence while your vehicle is operational. It is important to note that negative recalibration may occur on warmer days or during extended idling periods; this does not necessarily mean your battery is dying. However, negative recalibration will occur more often when driving on a weakened battery.
When to repair a dead battery
You can breathe a new lease of life into your battery through a process called reconditioning. However, it’s advisable that you begin this process as soon as you spot the first sign of decline in your hybrid battery. We also advise that you conduct this process routinely for extended battery life.
As a general rule of thumb, always check if your battery is covered by a warranty before performing any repair services as this may void your warranty.
Replacing a dead battery – is it worth it?
Replacing a dead hybrid car battery is often costly, with prices ranging between $1000 and $8000. Even so, getting a replacement battery is probably the best decision you can make if you plan to keep your car.
There are a couple of options available to you if you choose to go down this route; get a used/rebuilt battery or a completely new one.
Used and rebuilt batteries provide an alternatively affordable option with prices ranging from $1000-$2000. Unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that they will serve you for an extended duration so it’s important to buy from a reputable dealer.
New batteries are usually very costly but guarantee you the prescribed lifespan. Depending on the make of your vehicle, you can get them directly from the car manufacturer or select retailers recommended by them.
Where to sell my car whose hybrid battery has died
Not ready to incur the high cost of replacing a dead battery? How about you sell your hybrid car and get another car. Talk to used car dealerships or private individuals interested to take up such cars – Motors On Wheels sometimes buys hybrids with damaged batteries. Feel free to call us for a quick estimate 713-660-8666.
Buy a used car from Motors on Wheels
So you just sold your old hybrid car and are looking for a replacement car? Motors on Wheels has your back. Whether you want to buy another hybrid car or a gasoline-powered one, we have a large inventory to choose from. All our cars are subjected to a 51-point inspection to guarantee that whichever you choose offers optimal performance and runs like a new one.
Have a car in mind but can’t find it on our website? Let us know and we’ll get one for you in the shortest possible time. And no, we don’t just sell to buyers in Houston. We can ship your car anywhere in the country. Contact us now for a car or truck of your dreams!