Hybrid car batteries are not the panacea car manufacturers & environmentalists would have you believe. In fact, in many instances, people would be better off driving a combustion engine car if their goal is to help save the environment, get more milage on a tank of gas or reduce our dependence on foreign oil.
*Plus, check out the video at the end of this post, featuring Whose Line Is it Anyway’s? Brad Sherwood, reading the world’s most frightening bed time story and revealing the hybrid battery’s long circuitous manufacturing journey that will leave you gobsmacked.
THE TRUTH ABOUT HYBRID BATTERIES X 6
1. The battery is going to need replacing long before you’ll need to junk the car.
Although car companies provide warranties for up to 100,000 miles on factory installed parts – including the hybrid battery — what are you going to do after that? Hybrid cars can last drivers up to as much as 200,000 miles or more. So, when your battery dies — and it will, around 100K miles — you’ll need a new one. Guess what that costs. Got a number in your head?
[reveal heading=”%image% Click here to reveal cost“]Oh, about $3,000.00 dollars.[/reveal]
How good are you going to feel investing that kind of cash into a 10 year old car? Not very, we presume.
Oh, and what will happen to the old battery? Yeah, that’s a problem, too. It’s filled with dangerous chemicals.
2. A hybrid car’s electrical system is complicated.
The cost of repairing damage to your hybrid car’s electrical system is going to be more than what you are used to paying for the repair of your previous combustion engine vehicle. How much more? Hard to say. It depends on where you live, where you take the car, and how experienced the technician is. However, it will be more. Why? It’s more complicated. Many parts are hard to reach and require the technician to take things apart to get to the problem. So, you’re going to pay more for the technician’s time. Plus, the parts themselves will cost more. Why? Because complicated and unique electrical parts that run the hybrid’s electrical system are expensive to make… especially when you compare it to the cost of items that your combustion engine doesn’t even have.
3. The hybrid battery sucks in cold weather.
Do you live in a cold weather environment? If so, go get your DSLR camera and go outside and take a bunch of photos. How long did the battery last? Not very, right? That’s because in cold weather not only does the battery drain more quickly… but it also doesn’t take a full charge. In order for the battery to expend its energy, a series of complicated chemical reactions need to take place… which are hindered by the cold weather.
4. The longer you use your battery, the less and less charge it will take.
Let’s try a thought experiment. Assume you have some rechargeable batteries you use in your camera. After a few days of picture taking, you have to charge the batteries again. A few more days of picture taking, again the batteries need to get charged up. However, every time you charge them up, the amount of stored energy is a little bit less. So, at some point, you’ll need a new battery. Anyone with an Iphone can relate to a battery’s inability to hold a charge over time. Now, imagine if you have a hybrid car. As the car is driven, the battery discharges its energy and is recharged when you brake. That goes on for a few years… and before you know it, that battery that went say “X” miles on a full charge, is now going “X” minus “Y” on a full charge.
5. The current lithium battery technology has reached its apex.
Remember 8-track cassettes? And then after that, music was available on smaller cassettes. And after that, music was available on DVD? And finally, we have reached the apex of music storage, audio quality and delivery: the digital file. Well, in terms of technology, the lithium battery is the digital file. Lithium batteries have reached their apex in terms of deliverability. Regardless of the distance your lithium battery can take you, it will NEVER be twice that distance someday in the future because the combination of chemicals inside the battery and the way in which they react, they can’t give off considerably more energy. Could the lithium battery be slightly improved? Sure. Maybe by a few percentage points. But if drivers want a battery that goes say, 200 miles on a charge, they’re going to have to wait until some new technology becomes available to consumers.
6. If the battery on your hybrid car or the combustion engine stops working, you’re screwed.
If your hybrid car won’t start, its not like AAA can come to wherever you are and re-fuel you or give you a jump. You’re going to need a tow truck to come and pick you up. Why? You need both engines to be in working order to properly drive the Prius. You can’t drive the car on the battery alone — at least not very far — like 2 miles, at most. And that assumes the battery was fully charged before the car stopped going. You also can’t drive the car on the combustion engine alone, either.
Finally, want to know one more truth about the hybrid car battery? It’s no where near as environmentally friendly as you think, this short video explains.
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