How To Test Honda Civic Hybrid Battery? Easy Method!

Hybrid cars provide great service. But naturally, the battery in hybrid cars slowly deteriorates over time. And then it starts showing different problems. As a car owner, who didn’t test a hybrid car battery before, it’s common to feel puzzled. 

So, how to test Honda Civic hybrid battery?

For initial testing, force-charge the IMA battery after isolating the regular battery. If it doesn’t take charge of more than 6 bars, go for the individual battery module testing. Test each module with a multimeter. Identify the faulty modules that give a reading below 6.3 volts in the meter. 

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with just this much information. That’s why I have discussed the whole process step by step. So, keep reading.  

When Should You Test Your Honda Civic Battery?

From some common symptoms, you will easily understand if your honda civic battery is causing a problem. Then you should consider a battery check. 

Symptom 1: Decreased Gas Mileage 

The most obvious sign that your Honda Civic battery is causing a problem is when you are required to go to the gas station more frequently than before. A bad battery causes a decrease in gas mileage. 

Symptom 2: Charge Fluctuation

Observe the charge bar on your car. If your battery is dying, you will notice frequent fluctuations in the charge percentage. One moment, the battery is fully charged, and in a while, it will show you a low charge alert. 

Sometimes, your car won’t start even if fully charged. A bad battery can be a cause behind this. 

Symptom 3: Battery Drains Excess Charge

Another obvious symptom of low battery health is that it doesn’t hold the charge as much as it should. You may charge your Honda Civic hybrid battery overnight and still find a low battery in the morning. 

Symptom 4: Strange Engine Noises

When your battery health is decreasing, the battery will get extremely hot more often. And to cool it down, the electric fan needs to overwork. As a result, you will hear erratic noise from the fan.  

If these are problems you are facing, you need an immediate hybrid battery test. A bad battery causes harm to other components of the car as well. 

How To Test Honda Civic Hybrid Battery

How To Test Honda Civic Hybrid Battery? 

You need to test a Honda Civic Hybrid battery in two parts. If the outcome of the first test shows the battery is healthy, you don’t need the 2nd test. 

However, if your hybrid car battery fails at the first test, you perform the 2nd one to find out the faulty cell. Let’s get into the testing methods. 

Test NameOutcomesMeaningActions
Force ChargingCharges up to 6-8 barHealthy BatteryNo action required
Charges below 6 barFaulty batteryCheck individual modules to identify faulty ones
Individual IMA battery Cell CheckingAbove 6.3 V reading in multimeterThe module is fineKeep the module
below 6.3 V reading in multimeterThe module is faultyChange the module

Part 1: Force Charging To Find Out The Battery Health

Before going into the cell-by-cell hybrid battery test, first you should check if the battery health is okay or not. Wondering how to check Honda civic hybrid battery life? You check the battery life by force-charging it.

For this, you have to isolate hybrid battery performance from its regular battery. Here’s how you do it. 

  1. Shut off your Honda Civic Hybrid car. 
  2. Open the front hood and disconnect the negative terminal or the black wire from the regular 12V battery for at least 10 seconds. And then reconnect it. 
  3. Now, turn on your Honda Civic Hybrid car and then let it charge while idling. 
  4. Don’t drive the car while force-charging it. Also, don’t leave the car door open. Leaving the car door open can drain the battery too. You won’t get the actual result. 
  5. On the left side of your Honda Civic hybrid car instrument cluster, there’s a battery charging indicator with 8 bars. Observe it as the bar goes up while charging. 
  6. See how many bars it goes up to before taking the charge. It won’t take more than 10-12 seconds overall. 
  7. Perform this process 3 times an hour. And repeat the whole process for 10 hours. 

Now, if your Honda Civic hybrid battery is healthy, the charge will go up to 8 bar. If even one of the hybrid battery cells is not in excellent health, you won’t get 8 bar charge. 

Also, as you are doing the force start multiple times, sometimes it can go up to 6-7 bars. That also means your battery is in a moderate condition and you don’t need to replace the batteries yet. But lower bars on the charging slot than that indicate a problem. 

That’s when you have to open up the hybrid battery case and check the individual cells, to find out the faulty one. 

Part 2: Individual IMA Battery Cell Checking Method

As your Honda vivid hybrid failed at the initial test, you have to perform this second phase. I will guide you on how to check the individual cells step by step. Let’s start.  

Step 1: Taking Out The Battery

You have to open up the rear seat first. Remove the screws from the seat and take the seat out. You will find a button on the floor casing. Turn the battery button off. And with the help of a drill and T30 torque bit, remove all the screws from the cover. 

You will find the compressor, converter, and battery there. There are four 12 mm screws in two steel brackets protecting the battery. Unscrew those and take out the battery from there. 

Step 2: Disassemble The Battery

You have to open up the battery to test every unit. First, use a 10mm flathead screwdriver to remove the screws. Remove the temperature sensors too. After unscrewing the bolts, open up the casing by using needle nose pliers

After the first casing, there will be 3 additional layers protecting the battery cells. You can take the first two of them off by using your hand. And you have to unscrew the 3rd layer, which is 8 long bolts. And then you can take out the individual modules. 

Here’s a video for your convenience on how to open up the battery. 

Disassemly and Reassembly of a Honda Civic Hybrid Battery 2006-2009

After disassembling, you will find 12 pairs of stick or 12 module batteries. In a pair, the orange stick is positive and the green one is negative. 


Step 3: Testing the Modules

Take a good quality multimeter and set it at 20 DC volts. The red terminal of the multimeter is the positive one. Place it with the orange stick of your hybrid battery. 

The black terminal of the multimeter is the negative one. Place it with the green stick. 

Now, you will see the voltage of the battery show up on the multimeter. If you see 12.6+ V in the module, that means the battery life is 100%. Although, you won’t usually see this if the module isn’t brand new. 

If the reading on the multimeter is anything above 6.3+ V, the battery is good to go. The 50% battery life is enough for it to run. However, if the reading in the multimeter comes to 6.3 V or below, that means the battery is faulty and you need to change it. 

Take all the modules one by one and test them. Identify which ones are faulty and keep them aside. 

That’s how you perform a honda civic hybrid battery check. After that, replace the faulty module and reassemble the battery. 

How To Replace Honda Civic Hybrid Battery Cell?

As you have found out which modules are faulty, you have to replace those batteries with new ones. If most of the modules are faulty, some prefer to change the whole battery, although it’s too expensive. 

So, how much is it to replace a Honda Civic hybrid battery?

A pair of battery sticks cost around $165 to $170. If you want to change the whole battery, you are going to need around $2000. 

It’s always the best idea to test the battery and replace it with a professional if you don’t have prior experience in automobile repair. 


How Long Does A Hybrid Battery Last In A Honda Civic?

A hybrid battery lasts for around 6 to 10 years in a Honda Civic depending on the millage. A battery can go up to 100,000 miles. Some factors can decrease the battery life, like not using it for a long time. 

How To Charge Honda Civic Hybrid Battery?

To charge a plugged-in hybrid Honda Civic car, you will find a charging cable that comes with it. You can charge it in your 120v house outlet. You don’t have to charge Honda Civic standard hybrid batteries as they are self-charging. For this, they use the energy generated from the break application. 

What Kills A Hybrid Battery?

Keeping your hybrid battery inactive for a long time is the main cause of battery killing. Also, hard breaks and acceleration kill the hybrid battery too. 


Now you know how to test Honda Civic hybrid battery. testing out individual modules and changing just the faulty ones to save a huge amount of money. 

However, if you are not much experienced with these, I would recommend going to a professional. You can avoid the hassle. 

I’ll wrap it up here. Have a good day.

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