Insight


I finally started a blog for my 2002 Honda Insight. It’s my daily driver but also a car that will get lots of testing so that it can keep up the gas mileage that it is so capable of delivering.

Yesterday the Insight cell testing was finally completed. I put 4 chargers and 2 constant current power supplies to work individually charging 6 sticks at a time. That way the discharger was always testing a stick of cells. It took about 5 hours to do the remaining 15 or so sticks. The diode balancer didn’t work fast enough. So I just used the shorting clips from the flooded nicads to discharge each cell in a stick on those sticks that looked like it could help equalize. I found 3 sticks out of 20 that were able to sustain 6 minutes at a 50 amp (8C) discharge load. The rest fell under that time. That’s 5ah of capacity. Since nicads have a bit of a Peukert factor, then I think an 8C discharge will show a lower capacity than the nominal 6.5ah that they are rated at. My constant current discharger is so incredibly useful for testing these nicad cells.

The next step is to remove the pack from the Insight and do the same testing to it. I am not sure with 80k miles on the pack where the testing times will fall compared to the used pack. I still have to decide what is more useful, fully charging or discharging the Insight pack before I remove it. In order to duplicate the tests performed on the used cell, I would have to charge the Insight’s cells until very warm like I did the used ones.

Here are some Insight nicad sticks. After being tested there is usually 1 or more weak cells. I add a jumper across the weak cell so testing can continue on the rest of the cells.

Here is the ‘production’ area for screening the replacement cells just in case my Insight has some weak cells. I will remove the Insight’s pack after all of these get tested. I really need to get the spot welder assembled so I can repair any weak cells within a stick. The mill will come in handy for milling out the spot welds to separate the cells.