Hybrid Batteries 101

Information Charging Station: What You Need to Know About Hybrid Batteries -- Dave’s Ultimate Automotive

If you're on your second hybrid vehicle, you're an "old pro" by now. Still, if you're just getting into an alternative to the traditionally powered car, you may be seeking information. You know that your new auto is designed to be efficient and environmentally friendly, but what kind of battery does it have? How does it work? And, of course, where can you get reliable service and repair from professionals who are knowledgeable about hybrids? For all these questions, you'll find an answer at Dave's Ultimate Automotive in South Austin, Texas. We work on any make or model, and we take our role seriously as your best alternative to a hybrid dealer.

General Information

First, let's recognize what constitutes a "hybrid." Unlike a traditional auto or a fully electric model, his vehicle uses both battery power and a gasoline-powered motor for operation. Many drivers see this as a bonus because all-electric cars runes solely on battery power, using larger, more expensive batteries that must be recharged after driving a limited distance. Traditional vehicles use more fuel, with the battery in use for cranking and the alternator generating the electrical power thereafter. The hybrid uses a gasoline engine, an electric battery, and a 12-volt lead-acid battery. The transition between power sources is smooth and seamless, barely noticeable at all.

Regenerative braking, meaning that the battery is charging every time you apply brakes, recharges the electric battery. The gasoline engine takes over when needed. It is more fuel-efficient than a vehicle that operates only using gas and combustion for power. Interestingly, it may be called by the singular name "battery," but it is a multi-celled battery pack that is needed to give enough energy to power the auto. A polymer film prevents short-circuiting as two electrodes sit in an electrolyte solution. These electrodes are bridged when the vehicle is operating.

What to Expect

The lifespan of hybrid batteries has not been as long as some owners expected, but the good news is that electric technology is still improving. That's important since a hybrid car can't operate without this special battery, making it necessary, not an option. Some manufacturers say their batteries will last for about 100,000 miles/8 years. This has not, however, been the typical experience. Actual mileage has fallen short. Second-time owners recommend planning on purchasing batteries sooner. Batteries are, however, lasting longer with better technology. Also great for consumers, new car companies aren't the only ones producing hybrid batteries these days. That means you have an alternative to the dealership. At Dave's Ultimate Automotive, we look forward to helping with your hybrid.

Written by Dave's Ultimate Automotive