5 Ways to Ease the Financial Pressure of Hybrid Battery Replacement
Honda Insight Hybrid
The Honda Insight Hybrid provides excellent fuel economy, even when compared to other hybrid cars. But savings in gas mileage can catch up to Honda Insight Hybrid owners when their batteries fail, as all hybrid car batteries do at some point in the car’s lifespan (almost always within 10 years of purchase). Although many batteries carry an eight-year, 100,000-mile warranty, hybrid batteries can often fail in as few as six years, meaning that the cost of replacement is a constant dark cloud over hybrid owners’ heads. But there are quite a few ways to ameliorate the costs of replacement. Here are five tips to get you started:
Drive for Efficiency
You can boost the effectiveness of an already-efficient hybrid by driving carefully. Gradually slowing down at stoplights charges the battery (through something called regenerative braking), so don’t waste energy by slamming on the brakes. Also pay attention to your speeds and try to keep a steady, even pace so that your vehicle doesn’t need extra fuel to intermittently accelerate.
Look for Additional Savings
You may be able to get tax breaks and rebates for your planet-friendly ride, or snag special free parking spaces in your local municipality. You can probably also use the carpool lanes to avoid stop-and-go traffic, saving you both time and money.
Although you don’t know exactly when your battery will fail, it’s a good idea to err on the side of caution. If you take even a portion of what you’ve saved on fuel or parking expenses and set it aside for the first five years you own the car, you won’t have anxiety about waking up to a failed car battery keeping you up at night.
Repair When Possible
When your car fails to start, this doesn’t necessarily indicate a completely failed battery. Sometimes only a component of the battery (such as the smaller starter battery) will need attention. This means it’s worth getting your car checked out to see if a specialty hybrid battery repair shop can make it unnecessary to get a complete replacement.
Be Savvy About Replacements
When it does come time for you to buy a new battery, you can save a bundle by shopping around. Hybrid battery replacement costs, on average, $3,000 to $4,000; those prices can get even higher if you’re shopping at Honda dealerships. But by buying a battery from a third-party manufacturer, you can get the same performance at a lower price. The key is to do thorough research and seek out reviews from long-term customers in order to ensure the battery you’re buying is truly top quality.
How many miles have you driven your Honda Insight Hybrid on its current battery? Are you concerned about replacement soon? Join the discussion in the comments.