Whether you’re new to hybrid cars or have had one for a while, it’s important to know when your car’s battery needs attention. This guide will teach you how to recognize the signs of a dying battery, how to check your hybrid battery, and how to prolong the life of your car’s battery.
Signs That Your Hybrid’s Battery Is Dying
When owning a hybrid vehicle, you should familiarize yourself with the telltale signs that your hybrid battery may be dying.
The symptoms of battery failure are different from a conventional gas combustion engine, so if it’s your first time owning a hybrid car, it’s important to be aware of this.
No matter the make and model, you are likely to experience one of these issues when a hybrid vehicle’s battery begins to fail.
Strange Engine Noises
A dying hybrid car battery usually begins to run hot, which alerts your car’s electric fan to cool it down. As the fans work overtime, your car will start to make odd noises, so this could be a sign that your battery is failing.
This is when it’s very important to check your battery, as running a battery too hot may damage it and its components.
If your hybrid car’s display is showing erratic changes in your battery’s charge, it could be a sign that your battery is overcharging or unable to hold a charge. A big indicator of this is if your battery is showing full charge one moment, and then very low the next.
Not Holding Charge
If you leave your car parked and charging overnight, and then return the next morning with a low battery indication, then your hybrid battery definitely needs diagnostic attention.
Decreased Fuel Economy
Getting lower gas mileage than you expect is a likely sign of a dying hybrid battery. A hybrid vehicle is designed to use its battery to provide energy that fuels it.
When the battery starts to fail, the car reverts to relying on the gas combustion engine to fuel itself. If you notice this, you should check your battery.
Internal Combustion System
When a hybrid vehicle’s battery fails, the internal combustion engine will begin to run more than it should or will turn on at unexpected times. This is when you consider doing a battery checkup.
How To Check Your Battery
Rather than take your car to the mechanic, you can check your hybrid’s battery status yourself. You can purchase a battery checker to check your battery, however, there is a simple and free way to do this.
While it won’t give you an exact reading of your hybrid vehicle’s battery life, it will give you enough information so you can if you need to take further action.
First, you need to start your car and check its current battery level on your hybrid’s display. Ideally, it should be around the middle or higher.
Next, take your vehicle to an empty road and load the engine. This means you need to drive your car hard with as much power as you can. Be sure that the road is empty to ensure your safety and the safety of pedestrians.
While you’re loading the engine, monitor how long it takes for the hybrid battery to deplete. When accelerating for 10 seconds or longer, you should see the battery level drop slowly.
After this, find a hill and let your car coast down it. While doing so, monitor how fast the battery level fills. If it fills quickly and drains quickly, you are in phase 2 of 3 in your hybrid’s battery health.
How To Prolong Your Hybrid’s Battery Life
While your hybrid vehicle’s battery does have impressive longevity, there are ways to improve it and keep your car running for longer.
The life of a hybrid’s battery depends on the driver’s habits and how often the vehicle is used. Here are some ways to keep your hybrid battery working for longer.
Maintain An Even Temperature
Extreme temperatures can reduce battery life, so be sure to park your car in the shade on hot days, and in an insulated place on cold days.
Drive Your Car
Driving your car for at least 15 to 20 minutes twice a week generates kinetic energy, keeping the battery charged and healthy.
Brake And Accelerate Slowly
Abrupt braking and accelerating can wear down your battery and put a strain on it. Be gentle when using the accelerator and brake. Also, coasting generates kinetic energy which can give your hybrid’s battery a boost.
Do Regular Maintenance
Keep up with regular maintenance of your vehicle and fix any issues you find as soon as possible to prevent overworking your hybrid vehicle’s battery and maintain its condition.
Keep An 80/20 Charge
Keeping your hybrid’s battery charged at 100% all the time can lead to quicker drainage, and letting your battery drain lower than 20% can cause your battery to stop holding charge. Keep your vehicle charged between 80% and 20% to improve the longevity of your hybrid’s battery.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long Does A Hybrid Car Battery Last?
Depending on the driver’s habits and how often the vehicle is driven, a hybrid’s battery can last between 5 and 10 years.
How Much Does A Hybrid Battery Cost To Replace?
While a typical car battery costs $120 on average to replace, a hybrid’s battery is considerably more expensive. Due to its complexity, it can cost as much as $3,000 to replace.
As a hybrid vehicle owner, there are a few things to consider when it comes to maintaining your car’s battery. You should make yourself aware of the signs that indicate low battery life, and do a simple test to determine its condition.
With the information given, you’ll be able to easily check your battery and take the steps to keep your hybrid vehicle in perfect working condition.