Replace 12v battery routinely? - Smart Car Forums
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 04:06 PM Thread Starter
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Replace 12v battery routinely?

On my ICE cars I have never replaced a battery until it started having symptoms. Sometimes I'd go 10+ years with the same battery.

But do I need to change my thinking with the 12v battery in the EV's? We've got a couple of threads going now where leaving a dead 12v battery in the car might "brick" the HV battery and even though the HV battery might still be functional, there is no way anyone has come up with yet to put it back in service.

The 12v batteries on my two Smarts are each about five years old and reading 12.7v. I think they are both the originals, but here is an interesting note in the service record I got from the dealer before I bought the coupe.

"Radio left on by sales. Battery drained and had to be charged. Okay after charge."

Apparently that situation had no bearing on the HV battery.

Len
2014 EV Coupe 18,000 miles
2014 EV Cabriolet 12,000 miles
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 09:08 PM
 
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My 12V battery went bad around the 4 year point. Symptoms were that starting the car became unreliable over a period of a week or two. In my case, I had enough indication of a problem that I was eventually able remove the 12V battery, have it tested, buy a replacement, and get it installed, all in one afternoon. One of the cells in the 12v battery had gone bad so it was only holding around 10v.

I donÂ’t know what the timeline is for HV failure but it seems an afternoon with no 12V battery installed didnÂ’t do any harm.

Knowing what I know now, I would have put the car on a trickle charger or jumpered the car to a good 12v battery for the afternoon.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-15-2019, 02:55 AM
 
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My 2016 ED was built ~5/2015 so battery is now at least 4 years old if it is still the original. Time to check it out! Are there any clues if it is factory brand or country of origin? If it was replaced at some point in North America it might have a familiar brand name and maybe the sticker where you pop out the install date.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-15-2019, 08:37 AM Thread Starter
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I just serviced my cabriolet and checked the 12v battery. it is very clearly marked with a Smart sticker and part number. I tried to find a date of mfg. or in service, but nothing was visible and I wasn't curious enough to want to remove it to check.

Len
2014 EV Coupe 18,000 miles
2014 EV Cabriolet 12,000 miles
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-15-2019, 09:00 AM
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Why would you want to "routinely" replace the 12v battery.....?
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-15-2019, 10:06 AM Thread Starter
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Why would you want to "routinely" replace the 12v battery.....?
Because of a dead 12v causing the HV battery to become a brick after a period of time. That period of time has not been determined, but it could be only a matter of weeks, maybe less?

Read the first sticky in the electric car forum for the warnings.

Len
2014 EV Coupe 18,000 miles
2014 EV Cabriolet 12,000 miles
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-15-2019, 04:48 PM
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Wouldn't it be easier (not to mention cheaper) to just put a trickle charger on the 12v if the car is not going to be used for this unknown period?
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-15-2019, 09:29 PM Thread Starter
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Wouldn't it be easier (not to mention cheaper) to just put a trickle charger on the 12v if the car is not going to be used for this unknown period?
Yes to both questions, but we all need to make choices. What do you feel most comfortable doing? The way I use my two, I don't foresee ever letting them sit unused for a long period of time, but what happens if life gets in the way and something unforeseen pops up?

Len
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-16-2019, 07:42 AM
 
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A 12 volt car batteries, average life is 4-5 years. ICE, EV. I have a 7-70,000 mile battery, in one of my vehicle. It’s still going strong. After 6 years.

Test the strength of your battery, while your EV is running. It should read 14.5 volts. Your going to need a passenger to help out.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-16-2019, 11:00 AM
 
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I just bought a 12v socket expander that has a volt meter built into the plug. It usually reads 13.8v or so when the car is running.
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