When should the PDI be performed?

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by tom kirshbaum, May 6, 2019.

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  1. tom kirshbaum

    tom kirshbaum New Member

    We've been warned numerous times in the forum that cars should not be stored with the batteries uncharged. Meaning, the dealer should charge the battery and make sure it is charged at all times.

    First (obvious) question: What is "charged."? Two lines? more? I gather that two lines can actually mean much less (e.g., 0 ev miles remaining).

    Second questions: Dig this, from SB 17-093 which Insightman recently, most helpfully, posted:

    20. Charge the High-Voltage Lithium-Ion Battery
    The high-voltage lithium-ion battery should be charged only after all other PDI items are done. [boldface mine]

    Does this mean that the PDI should be performed as soon as the car arrives at the dealer? If the PDI has not been performed, the dealer is not allowed to charge it. My impression has been that cars sit on dealer lots "uncharged," which is bad. Thus, if I'm shopping for a Clarity, shouldn't the dealer be able to prove by paperwork that the PDI has been completed and, thus, the battery charged? Since it's called a PDI, that sounds as though the dealer should wait until the car is sold and about to be delivered.

    Third question: Does all this mean that I should insist on seeing the PDI paperwork (including the date when the battery test was performed) before considering a car?
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  3. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member Subscriber

    The car should be charged at all times throughout its purgatory on the dealer's lot. It doesn't need to be fully charged, but it shouldn't be allowed to discharge fully. One forum member (I'll guess wrong if I try to remember) actually received his Clarity PHEV with zero bars showing on the Battery Charge Level Gauge. Criminal!

    The dealer should perform the PDI just before delivery, leaving at least an hour to top off the battery charge using the Level 2 EVSE that ALL DEALERS SHOULD NOW HAVE. As the PDI document instructs, the dealer is NOT to use the Level 1 EVSE that comes with the car to charge the battery prior to delivery. You should ask for a copy of the completed PDI checklist and try to persuade the dealer that the Battery Capacity Check is part of the PDI so that number should be on your copy of the checklist.

    One PDI item that clueless dealers often miss is not realizing that the 4 rubber plugs that come in the plastic bag with the front license plate mount are supposed to be installed in the holes under the car where the car was anchored while being shipped. The other common error is forgetting to reduce the tire pressure from 50 psi to the 36 psi specified on the driver's side door-jamb.
    KentuckyKen likes this.
  4. thecompdude

    thecompdude Member

    What if the dealer says that the battery test was done and declines to show proof or the number? Anyone have luck with Honda corporate stepping in to help?
  5. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    Dealer speak with forked tongue and Honda cavalry not coming over hill to rescue. However you might be able to ride off into the sunset with the beautiful leading lady if you married up. (Been watching a lot of Westerns lately.)
  6. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member Subscriber

    Starting a question with those 6 words--regardless of what follows them--is cause for mirth.

    We're waiting to see how @Cjk fares after he lets Honda corporate swap out his HV battery to just check it out. In their request to borrow and gut his Clarity PHEV, they incorrectly wrote they were going to install an IMA battery, which would mean replacing his 17 kWh Li-Ion i-MMD battery with an 0.9 kWh nickel-metal hydride IMA battery.

    Honda corporate will direct you to your dealer for any problems you need to resolve--even if your dealer is the problem.

    Your best bet is to smooth-talk the service staff to convince them there is no reason why they would want to withhold the battery capacity number. In fact, if the number gets low enough (36.6 amp-hours) before your warranty expires, your dealer's service department will get to charge Honda for lots of work to perform the warranty replacement of your battery. Honda forced dealers to buy an expensive high-capacity lift just for removing batteries from electricfied cars up on the regular lift. Your battery replacement may be the first chance they'll get to use that expensive battery lift. So AFAIK there's no pecuniary motive for the dealer's service department to withhold that number.
    Last edited: May 7, 2019
    thecompdude likes this.
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  8. MPower

    MPower Well-Known Member

    You're joking, of course.o_O
  9. tom kirshbaum

    tom kirshbaum New Member

    I’m more confused than ever. Many dealers, apparently, don’t bother with the PDI until they get a buyer or at least for quite a while after they get the car. Is this right? But Honda prohibits them from charging the battery until AFTER the PDI is complete. So what is a prospective buyer to do to protect himself?
  10. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    Honda’s Catch22 means that that only protection you have is knowing what the Battery Capacity Signal is before you buy. And I would NOT take their word on it. I would insist on seeing the printout and NOT a scribbled in value on a piece of paper. Caveat emptor!
  11. Mowcowbell

    Mowcowbell Well-Known Member

    I never saw a Level 2 charger at my dealership. The Level 1 charger was loose in my trunk when I bought my Clarity, indicating that they had unwrapped it and used it to charge the car while it sat on the dealer lot. Mine was missing the 4 body plugs, and the salesman removed the plugs from the other Clarity on the lot and gave them to me. They offered to install them, but I did it myself so that I knew it was done properly.
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  13. Sandroad

    Sandroad Well-Known Member

    Step 20 in the PDI should be taken in context of the entire PDI. Step 19 is to check operation of the Level 1 charger that comes with the car and that’s not possible with a battery that has just been fully charged. So, it’s no problem for a dealer to keep the battery charged while on the lot. It’s just that in the PDI, the last step is a final full charge for the customer using the dealer’s level 2 charger.

    Of course now I can’t resist a poke at dealers.......has anyone ever taken delivery with a fully charged battery?
    insightman likes this.
  14. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member Subscriber

    My dealer already had a Level 2 charger over on the Audi side and our Clarity was delivered fully charged. A year after our December 2017 delivery, the Honda side had 3 Leviton Level 2 EVSEs.
  15. Sandroad

    Sandroad Well-Known Member

    A2 seems to be ahead of the game in general for charging. That’s good to know about the dealer there. :)
  16. Mark W

    Mark W Active Member

    You are reading it wrong. It does NOT mean that they dealer should not charge the battery ever until pre-delivery inspection. It just means that as part of the steps for the PRE-DELIVERY PROCESS, that the charging should be done last. The PDI checklist is just a list of things that the dealer needs to CHECK before delivery. Many of the items on it can be done well before delivery, i.e. changing the tire pressure, installing plugs, etc.
    tom kirshbaum likes this.

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