Hybrid battery reconditioning is vital to ensure that your car’s battery runs efficiently despite surpassing its designated lifespan. The average cost of a new hybrid battery is $4500. So, this is not at all a cheap piece of machinery to replace.
While these battery types have a long shelf life, they do suffer wear and tear. The distinct advantage of using a car battery of a hybrid variant is its ability to run on electricity and gasoline. So, you can easily hope to switch fuel modes and never really run out of range.
I also like the simple fact that these batteries help keep our environment safe and green. So, when you use hybrids in your car, you contribute towards a safer and greener environment.
In this article, I shall discuss how to maintain and recondition your hybrid batteries. I shall also throw more light on what hybrids are all about. So, without much ado, let me begin with my write-up.
Hybrid Battery Reconditioning Article Contents:
1) What is a Hybrid Battery?
2) What are the Different Hybrid Engine Types?
3) What are the Power Delivery Mechanisms used in Hybrid Batteries?
4) How Much does a New Hybrid Battery Cost?
5) What is the Lifespan of a Hybrid Battery?
6) How Much is Hybrid Car Voltage?
7) What are Hybrid Car Battery Specifications?
8) What are the Top 3 Hybrid Car Battery Manufacturers?
9) How to Recondition a Hybrid Car Battery?
10) What is the Best Hybrid Car Battery Reconditioning Course?
11) How to Find Hybrid Battery Reconditioning Equipment for Sale?
12) How Much does it Cost to Recondition Hybrid Car Batteries?
What is a Hybrid Battery?
A hybrid battery is a piece of machinery that powers your vehicle. It makes use of two energy sources. The first is gasoline and the second is electricity. Commercial engines use internal combustion engine and gasoline to power their machine.
What are the Types of vehicles that Use Hybrid Engines:
Cycles and Scooters:
Scooters and cycles make use of internal combustion engine and an electric motor to function. As far as bicycles are concerned, they are of three types:
@ The series hybrid variant helps the bicycle rider to propel the electric motor via the pedal. So, as you push the pedals, you recharge the electric motor.
@ The parallel hybrid cycles uses a transmission element affixed to the bike to power the motor. This is in the form of a wheel connection or a roller pressing against the cycle’s tire or a hub motor.
@ Well, this is a bicycle that is propelled via an electric motor as well as a petrol engine. The generator is fed by petrol while the pedals power the battery. Here, you can go miles without a refill.
There are airplanes that have a battery and a normal propeller. The take off as well as the accent is when the aircraft digs into the lithium-ion batteries for power. The propeller helps steer the plane when it has achieved a stable height.
Bus, Truck & Rail:
The electric motor and gasoline propel heavy vehicles. They have turbo-electric machinery to power their engines with. Some vehicles use diesel-electric motors as well.
Ships, Cranes & Submarines:
These vehicles make use of diesel and electric motors to power their machines with. Even cranes make use of electric motors and a diesel engine to lift crates on and off a ship.
Many car manufacturers have been integrating hybrid engines to help cut emissions and fuel costs. These are mated with either a diesel motor or a petrol engine.
What are the Different Hybrid Engine Types?
In case you thought that only gasoline can be mated with an electric engine then, you are grossly mistakes. In reality, there are several other ways in which hybrid engines function.
Let me walk you through each hybrid engine type:
The Electric Hybrid Engine:
These are mostly used in passenger vehicles. Models such as Ford Escape, Toyota Yaris, Honda Civic and many others use hybrid petrol engines. They make use of an internal combustion engine.
There is a tiny generator that powers the electric motor. A special battery set also delivers streamlined power to the vehicle’s motor. This way, you shall continue to drive the vehicle for longer range without consuming more fuel.
Rechargeable Electric Vehicles:
There are some vehicles that recharge their electric batteries while traversing through a state or national highway. They derive power from the metal plates underneath the roads or from electric wires that are above the vehicle.
Dual Fuel Hybrid Types:
When a vehicle is using two power sources (with special regards to fuel), it is termed as a dual fuel hybrid engine.
>>> Trolleys that ferry passengers on road or in the air use diesel engine as well as electric.
>>> Vegetable waste oil as well as auto gas based engines are also using dual fuel sources.
>>> Some vehicles make use of a wide array of fuels. Some of these include butane, ethanol and gasoline.
>>> Liquefied petroleum gas as well as natural gas is also used to run vehicles. These gasses are stored in separate tanks. Chevrolet Silverado is a classic example of the same.
Hybrid Engines Powered by Human Movement:
These are machines that are propelled via human movement. For example, an electric powered bike shall recharge the battery when you pedal.
Hybrid Engines using Gasoline and Compressed Gas:
>>> Gasoline and Air Powered Engines: These engines run via gasoline as well as air. Over here, you can drive your vehicle using pneumatic or hydraulic modes.
>>> Petrol and Hydraulic Hybrid Engines: These are usually used in heavy vehicles. Some of these include trains and trucks. Over here, you are able to power the vehicle using petrol and battery.
What are the Power Delivery Mechanisms used in Hybrid Batteries?
There are 5 types of hybrid configurations that power your vehicles. Let me walk you through each of these in brief:
The Plug-In Power Train:
This is an engine that uses a serial or parallel electric engine. It also contains a hybrid gasoline engine. The use of lithium-ion in the battery is what powers the electricals here. You may use this hybrid engine to drive your car on battery.
In this type of hybrid, you can run your vehicle either using electric or gasoline. The motor and engine are mated to match each other’s speed when functioning on gasoline. On the contrary, the clutch is mated with the gearbox while getting disconnected with the gasoline engine.
Serial Hybrid Power Train:
This is a hybrid engine that uses both fuel as well as electricity to run the vehicle. When the battery power is low, the fuel engine kicks in to provide the missing power. Alternately, the electric drive train can be used as a backup when your fuel finishes.
Hybrids using Split Power Drive Trains:
In these vehicle types, the drive train is split between the internal combustion engine and the electric power. So, you can run your vehicle completely on gasoline or on battery power. You can also divide the power ratio as per your preference (60-40 or 70-30).
Less than 20Kwph Hybrid Engines:
These engine types derive their drive related power from the gasoline engine. The battery is small and is used for starting the engine or for regenerative breaking.
How Much does a New Hybrid Battery Cost?
The cost of a hybrid battery varies from the vehicle used. Nonetheless, in a nutshell, the cost can vary in between $900 to $7000. Once again I repeat – the cost is entirely dependent on the nature of your battery.
In case you use a hybrid car then, the battery cost should be roughly $3500. This is what you need to shell out if you happen to damage your car’s battery.
The demand for hybrid car batteries has increased ever since the price of oil per barrel has gone out of proportion. NiMh batteries have now been replaced by Lithium-Ion (well, in most cases).
What is the Lifespan of a Hybrid Battery?
Hybrid batteries are expensive yet they also last longer than normal batteries. It has been stated by hybrid car battery manufacturers that the average life span of these devises is usually 100,000 miles.
This in turn implies that if you run your car via hybrid batteries then, these should last you 12 years. This figure comes up when you drive your car 8000 miles each year. I believe this is an average an American drives his/her vehicle annually.
How Much is Hybrid Car Voltage?
A hybrid car consists of a battery and an internal combustion engine. It also has a small motor that is powered by electricity. Your car travels using a combination of gasoline and electric power. So, your vehicle is able to emit low CO2 and manage to travel more miles without needing a refueling.
The Voltage is High:
Lithium-Ion of NiHM is what your hybrid car’s battery consists of. The generator powers the battery and the battery powers the engine. This is how your vehicle runs.
The batteries powering hybrid cars have a voltage in between 90 to 310 volts. Some have a voltage that exceeds the 590 volt mark.
Protection against High Voltage Battery:
So, the battery is encapsulated in a secure box and placed near the boot of the vehicle. This is right behind the portion wherein your rear passengers sit. The cables connecting the battery to the motor too are kept encapsulated.
This encapsulation ensures that the battery cables do not touch the chassis. If it is not encapsulated, the chance of electrocuting the steel plates underneath the car is high.
What to Do if Your Hybrid Car has an Accident?
In case your hybrid vehicle meets with an accident then, you need to be cautious. While the chances of getting electrocuted are rare, you still need to be careful.
Well, here are a few tips:
@ The reason why you do not get electrocuted is because a car’s battery is encapsulated in a secure box.
@ If the box is broken during the accident then, you should not touch the battery. Stay away from it.
@ Avoid contact with the cables attached to the battery. They are insulated and marked.
@ Switch off the engine by cutting off the ignition. The kill-switch in each hybrid vehicle may be different. So, learn about the ignition by reading the car’s manual.
@ The moment the car’s ignition is switch off, the battery is also shut down. This act stops the electricity from passing through the vehicle.
@ Wait for a few minutes post the ignition switch being turned off. The current might still be running in the cables.
@ In case your hybrid vehicle is underwater then, you need to turn off the ignition. The fuel pump should also be disabled. Then, the airbags should be disabled. Only then should you take the vehicle out of the water.
What are Hybrid Car Battery Specifications?
The hybrid car battery uses both gasoline as well as battery to run the vehicle. The ideal battery voltage in your hybrid cars is 12 volts. So, you have two power-trains. The first is an internal combustion engine and the other is a battery powered electric motor.
The space involved in maintaining both fuel sources compromises customer comfort. Moreover, the cost involved is high as you have two engines installed in one vehicle. The added weight may also be of concern to a few vehicles.
The good part of hybrid engines is the fuel economy. With the rising prices of coal and natural gas, hybrid engines prove to be cost effective. Hybrid cars can reduce your fuel costs by as much as 34%.
What is Inside a Hybrid Car Battery?
In a hybrid car battery, you can glimpse a series of tiny cells linked together. There are connected with each other in a serial pattern. These series are termed as modules and even cassettes. The battery is also placed within a special casing.
The batteries are then fortified with an array of equipment. This includes leakage protection devises, voltage control and amp control mechanism. The special casing also keeps the hybrid battery from overheating.
The Short Circuit Protection:
The electrodes that are saturated within electrolyte liquid helps avoid short circuit. This happens with the aid of a polymer film that encapsulates a set of electrodes. This hampers one electrode to touch another. This avoids short-circuits.
How does a Hybrid Battery Produce Energy?
As I have mentioned above, hybrid batteries comprise of several cells. These are connected and encapsulated within a strong case. Now, each cell contains positive and negative ions.
The exchange of energy between the positive and negative ions generates energy. This energy is related to your vehicles transmission system via special cables. Hence, your car starts moving in the direction of your choice.
How does Toyota Prius Hybrid Battery Look Like?
In a Toyota Prius, there are one hundred and twenty six cells. These are packed in twenty eight modules. Each cell is capable of delivering 1.2 volts.
The total power delivered by these batteries is 201 volts. So, when the battery is half charged, you get 20 Kw power delivered to your vehicle. The battery is placed behind the rear seat and weighs fifty four kilograms.
How does Honda Insight Hybrid Battery Look Like?
Now unlike the Prius, Honda Insight uses a NiMH battery. This is a Nickle metal hydrate battery that contains one hundred and twenty cells. Each cell delivers a power of 1.2 volts. The battery is stored in a special compartment named the ‘’ cargo-box’.
A fully charged Honda Insight battery delivers one hundred and forty four volts of power. When it is 50% charged then, the same battery delivers fifty amperes of energy.
How does Toyota Highlander Hybrid Battery Look Like?
Toyota’s Highlander is a big machine powered by a V6 engine. It uses a Nickle based hydride battery that is fortified by two hundred and forty cells.
The size of this battery is smaller as compared to Toyota Prius. Despite its small size, it delivers 650 volts of power. The battery can be placed behind the rear passenger seat without any hitch.
The modules comprising of various sets of cells are independent in their functionality. They help recharge and discharge power from the battery independently. This in turn helps your machine to remain cool thereby encouraging enhanced engine performance.
What are the Top 3 Hybrid Car Battery Manufacturers?
With the sudden demand for hybrid car engines, many companies have stepped in. This has helped in the development of batteries that are lighter, more powerful, less expensive and easy to maintain.
It was in the year 1898 that the first hybrid battery was introduced by Porsche. Nonetheless, in those days the demand for gasoline engines surpassed the demand for hybrids. Now, times have changed and hybrids are back in craze.
Well, here are the top 3 players in the hybrid car battery market:
This car manufacturer has been making hybrid batteries for decades. The need for hybrids is the lack of range if your car relies on battery power alone. If your car has only battery power then, it may not travel more than 45 kilometers.
So, the combination of battery and internal combustion engine helps your car cover more miles before refueling. Toyota’s Prius and Highlander are classic examples of successful car batteries.
Founded in the year 1903, Ford Motor Corporation is undoubtedly the most reputed car manufacturer in the world. It is also known for manufacturing hybrid batteries.
It was in the year 2004 when Ford’s Escape became the first vehicle to be powered by a hybrid battery. Ford Fusion hybrid is also a successful car manufactured under this brand.
After Toyota, it is Ford that manufactures the highest number of hybrid engines.
It was in the year 1899 when Renault came into existence in France. The Renault Capture and E-Tech Hybrid are classic examples of its successful vehicles.
The batteries are cost effective and the performance offered is flawless. Renault is investing billions of dollars in improving its existing fleet of hybrids. So, you can expect to avail the latest technology in your Renault hybrids.
How to Recondition a Hybrid Car Battery?
Unlike what you thought, hybrid batteries are easy to maintain. They also last way longer than normal batteries. You can easily hope to keep them powering your car for 8 to 10 years.
In the year 2000, the cost of a new hybrid battery may have set you back by 10000 USD. Well, not any more. You now pay just $3500 (on an average) to get a replacement. A better way to save this expense is to prolong the life of your old hybrid.
How to Prepare for Hybrid Battery Reconditioning at Home?
It is vital to learn the steps needed to recondition batteries at home. Nonetheless, first you need to prepare for this task. Here are a few precautions that you need to take before you initiate the reconditioning process:
>>> It is good to keep a close watch over the circuit. Hybrid batteries have a high voltage and high amperage. We are taking up to 300 volts here. This can cause injuries if you are not careful.
>>> Make sure that you protect your hands by wearing a pair of protective gloves.
>>> You need to protect your eyes by wearing a pair of goggles.
>>> Make sure that the room you work in is airy and has ample ventilation outlets.
>>> Seek help of a friend or relative that has experience reconditioning batteries.
>>> Go through a battery reconditioning course to gain knowledge on how to recondition hybrid batteries at home.
>>> Get a cycler that helps you charge and discharge a hybrid battery.
>>> You need a special reader to read the QR codes embossed onto your hybrid battery.
>>> To unfasten bolts and nuts from the battery, you need a driver.
>>> The cell charge/discharge status needs to be read via a special software reader. So, you may need to get one home soon (an app would suffice).
Steps to Recondition Your Hybrid Batteries at Home
@ First and foremost, you need to assemble all your gear in one place. Find a ventilated room for the same. Make sure that the air is allowed to escape.
@ You need to then wear an apron and a pair of goggles. After protecting your eyes, cover your hands in a pair of gloves.
@ With the safety precautions in place, the next step is to unlock the battery from your vehicle. Use a screwdriver to remove the nuts and bolts.
@ Get hold of the Cycler machine and connect it to your battery. This is done so as to gauge the charge and discharge cycle of your hybrid battery.
@ Check the Amp per Hour using a software application that offers an accurate score. This shall help you ascertain the charge left in each individual cell present in the battery.
@ You need to then separate the bad cells from the good ones. Sometime an entire module may be bad and has to be removed.
@ Then, get hold of modules or cells that can replace the bad ones. Place the new cells in place of the old ones.
@ Make sure you cross check the arrangements. There should be no error in arranging the modules and cells.
@ Fix the hybrid battery back to the vehicle. Discharge it and then charge it to 100%. You can now start using your vehicle.
What is the Best Hybrid Car Battery Reconditioning Course?
Well, there are several articles on the internet that teach you how to recondition batteries. Nonetheless, hybrid batteries are slightly different from normal batteries. They have a higher voltage and are not as simple to operate as normal 12 volt batteries.
If you really wish to learn how to recondition hybrid batteries at home then, you might want to check out YouTube videos on this topic. Nonetheless, these videos too are full of rehashed content. So, you might not be able to gather the information you are actually seeking.
To ensure that you learn the art of recharging hybrid batteries in the best way, opt for a reliable online course. The one that I personally recommend is EZ Battery Reconditioning Course. It has helped me master the art of refurbishing my car’s dying batteries at home.
How to Find Hybrid Battery Reconditioning Equipment for Sale?
In order to ensure that your hybrid battery is performing flawlessly, you need to learn the refurbishing process. You also need to ensure that you get hold of the necessary tools.
The importance of reconditioning old hybrid batteries is not only limited to saving money. Besides skipping buying a new battery, you also keep the environment clean.
This is done by avoiding pollution. When you throw a used battery, you also dump hundreds of radioactive cells with it. This in turn adds to the already polluted environment. So, you leave behind lesser carbon footprints.
Well, to cut this conversation short, here is what all you need to carry out a hybrid battery reconditioning (the equipment):
The Digital Multimeter:
This tool is needed to check electrical circuits. It also helps troubleshoot and diagnose any issues with the cells present within the hybrid battery.
While the first one came into this world in the year 1970, the current multimeter is at an all new level. It reads current levels in amps, voltage in volts and even measures the resistance levels in ohms. All this is displayed digitally and not via the means of an age old needle.
You can get hold of one for $100. More expensive ones can cost $70 more but the basic one would be fit for the job.
Here is how you use the digital multimeter correctly:
The metal surface of your hybrid battery may have current. This in turn shall ensure that you can get a slight shock. While it shall not kill you, the discomfort is evident. So, place your hand onto the rubber surface or the plastic surface of the hybrid battery.
The Heat Related Issue:
While using the meter, if you find that the surface is hot, you need to be careful. The wires and switches need to be tested for warmth. If it is hot, switch off the circuit.
Jack & Probe Setup:
You need to place the probe in the correct jack to get the desired result. The positive and negative needs to be placed where they are supposed to.
Learn to Read the Meter:
There are several readings that need to be looked into. You should know how to read the meter when you have fixed the jack into the correct probes. You can look up a YouTube video to learn this art.
You need to safeguard your skin and arms against a possible burn. Even your eyes need to be protected via a pair of goggles.
The QR Code Reader
This is the second piece of equipment that you need in order to recondition your hybrid car’s battery. When you scan the code using a decoder, you get to know what fault is actually bothering your battery.
The QR code reader shall analyze the message being dispatched by the PCM. This helps you diagnose the vehicle’s current running condition (along with a list of faults) in a jiffy.
This is the third piece of tool that you need in order to recondition your car’s hybrid battery. I would suggest going in for an impact driver. This way, you shall not do the unfastening or hammering manually.
Impact drivers have extra torque. Hence, they turn faster than a handheld driver. They are also easy on your wrist and arms. While unfastening bolts and screws from a hybrid battery, an impact driver shall make your job easier.
Hybrid Assist Software
This is the last and final tool that is needed to analyze the current reading of a hybrid battery. If you use a Toyota or a Lexus vehicle then, this (Hybrid Assist) app shall make things easier.
The distinct advantage of using this app is the ability to view the specifics of your hybrid vehicle. You can assess and analyze its performance. If there is any fault with the battery, this application shall reveal the same.
Where to Get All These? I personally buy all them online.
How Much Does it Cost to Recondition Hybrid Car Batteries?
The DIY Style:
If you refurbish your car’s hybrid battery at home then, the cost is almost negligible. All you need are a few pieces of equipment. These include a QR Reader, a software application, a digital multimeter and a pair of gloves/goggles.
In my opinion, all you end up paying are a few hundred dollars. This is a onetime investment. Thereafter, you can re-use this piece of equipment to recycle as many hybrid batteries as you like.
The Workshop Style:
If you decide to take your hybrid car battery to a workshop then, you shall incur additional cost. The workshop mechanic shall ask for his labor charge.
He/she shall also include the cost of replacing the old modules or cells in the total bill. You can hope to cough up a total of $1500 if you take your hybrid battery to a workshop.
Nonetheless, the battery shall run flawlessly thereafter. Ideally, you should be able to recover $4000 worth of result from your $1500 investment (done at the workshop). Not bad at all! I would personally prefer a DIY hybrid battery refurbish at the safe confines of my yard.
The ability to recondition hybrid batteries at home has indeed cut down the expenses. Now, instead of spending $4000 on a new car battery, you can refurbish your old one for less than a hundred bucks.
Not only does that save your bank balance but it also helps you build a greener planet. By simply learning the reconditioning process and taking out some time, you can literally double the existing shelf life of your hybrid car batteries.