Hybrid cars and SUVs have been around long enough that it is becoming apparent that their hybrid batteries will last 100,000 miles or more. But if you have an older hybrid with a battery that is finally showing signs of wear, the price of a replacement at a dealer might startle you. Fortunately, more and more private technicians are offering hybrid battery replacement services at a lower cost.
Can you replace the battery of a hybrid yourself?
The high voltage batteries in hybrid cars and SUVs – such as the batteries in all-electric vehicles – are specialized high voltage units. They cannot be accessed by simply opening the hood, and replacement is best left to trained professionals. But if you want to save some money, you do have shelling alternatives to a dealer battery change.
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Have you ever replaced the battery in a combustion engine car? It’s often a relatively simple affair where all you need to do is open the hood, disconnect two sturdy wires, remove the battery from the tray, and lift out a unit about twice the size of a shoebox. If you have completed this service item on your own, you may begin to wonder how much more difficult it is to replace the battery in a hybrid.
The truth is that replacing the battery in almost any hybrid car will be much more complicated. The battery unit will be several times larger and heavier. The fact that it is a high voltage battery makes swapping it out without proper training dangerous. And finally, disposing of the old battery can be expensive and difficult.
Can any auto repair shop replace a hybrid’s battery?
No. Maintenance of the high voltage circuit in a hybrid or electric vehicle is not something every auto technician is trained to do. That said, an increasing number of private car shops have the training and know-how. But you’ll definitely want to ask ahead of time.
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Your local dealer will certainly have service technicians capable of replacing the battery on an aging hybrid. But if you want to restore your hybrid car or SUV range without spending a lot of money, consider using a private shop.
In fact, there are more and more shops that specialize in the repair of hybrid vehicles. There are also private companies that offer replacement batteries that may cost less than OEM parts. But you should do your research if your hybrid is still under warranty – you wouldn’t like to void your warranty.
How do you know when your hybrid’s battery is worn out?
Most hybrids will display a warning screen when their battery is depleted and will affect performance. Ultimately, a complete battery failure can leave you stranded on the side of the road in certain vehicles.
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Long before a full battery goes out, you may see your hybrid’s mpg consumption drop. You may also see the all-electric range of a plug-in hybrid decrease. If this happens, it’s a good idea to have your dealer’s service department or a hybrid vehicle specialist look at your car or SUV.
Then find out the cost of replacing your hybrid battery or get to know the family that started Green Tec Auto’s hybrid repair shop in the video below:
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