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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2018 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid Touring model. I purchased it in 2019. When I purchased it I was getting 48 miles or higher with the full charge. After a year or so, I started getting lower and lower range. Now, It is impossible to get more than 38 miles. I live in Sacramento, CA. So, we have mild weather pretty much around the year. I imagine that it is not about the weather.

Any suggestions? Are there any software or firmware update available for these models? Since I purchased the car, no update has been installed.

Thanks for your response in advance!
 

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The definitive test would be to have a Honda dealer perform a battery capacity test on the traction system battery.

The 55Ah battery if it shows less than 36.6AHh capacity then it is a warranty replacement (10 year / 120,000 mile for CA).

Usually for a 4 year old EV battery, it's a number factors that can lead to decreased range:
  • cabin heating
  • tires - non LRR. low pressures, wear, etc
  • driving style
  • terrain
  • cooler temps affecting battery chemistry
  • lack of preconditioning (L2)
  • charging outside vs enclosed garage
 

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2018 PHEV Touring Atlanta, GA
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You can also check the battery capacity yourself using a relatively inexpensive OBD-II reader. There is one particular one that works well for this which is the Vgate iCar Pro Bluetooth 4.0 which is under $35.00. Then there is a free app called Car Scanner which you download to your phone, in the setup for Car Scanner you tell it you are using it on a Clarity. The app lists several dozen values for the Clarity, you scroll through and look for the one that says Battery Capacity, which will be something under 55.0 Ah since that is the capacity of a brand new battery. Some loss of capacity is expected, what you will be checking is if the capacity drop seems to be equivalent to your loss of range. And also by doing this yourself you can check it every few months to see if the capacity is going down and by how much.

And I always have to ask because otherwise we don't know, are you experiencing actual loss of EV range, i.e. in the past you could physically drive 48 miles using the battery and now you can only drive 38 miles. Or are you just going on what the display says is your estimated number of EV miles? Because the display value in many cases does not match actual EV miles. The only way to track actual EV miles is to use the odometer to see how far you can drive on a charge. Easiest way to do that is to go into the setup on the infotainment screen and set one of the trip odometers to reset to zero whenever you charge. Then you can simply look at the trip odometer while you are driving to see how far you have driven since your last charge.
 

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2021 PHEV Touring HB, CA
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I suspect that driving style os having the greatest impact. From my EV-1 days, we learned to drive "like there's a raw egg between your foot and the go pedal."
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
You can also check the battery capacity yourself using a relatively inexpensive OBD-II reader. There is one particular one that works well for this which is the Vgate iCar Pro Bluetooth 4.0 which is under $35.00. Then there is a free app called Car Scanner which you download to your phone, in the setup for Car Scanner you tell it you are using it on a Clarity. The app lists several dozen values for the Clarity, you scroll through and look for the one that says Battery Capacity, which will be something under 55.0 Ah since that is the capacity of a brand new battery. Some loss of capacity is expected, what you will be checking is if the capacity drop seems to be equivalent to your loss of range. And also by doing this yourself you can check it every few months to see if the capacity is going down and by how much.

And I always have to ask because otherwise we don't know, are you experiencing actual loss of EV range, i.e. in the past you could physically drive 48 miles using the battery and now you can only drive 38 miles. Or are you just going on what the display says is your estimated number of EV miles? Because the display value in many cases does not match actual EV miles. The only way to track actual EV miles is to use the odometer to see how far you can drive on a charge. Easiest way to do that is to go into the setup on the infotainment screen and set one of the trip odometers to reset to zero whenever you charge. Then you can simply look at the trip odometer while you are driving to see how far you have driven since your last charge.
I have ordered the reader. I will update the post if I find some kind of issue. Also, I plan to check the odometer as well. However, I still do not understand why the dashboard shows a different value even if it is the case. Thanks.
 

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Get EV range down to 0 and try doing a slow charge of 16 amps or less, level 2 or 1.
I have never heard of charge speed affecting EV range. Is this something you have experienced with your Clarity or did you read about it somewhere? If you have experienced a difference, how much was the difference?
 

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I have ordered the reader. I will update the post if I find some kind of issue. Also, I plan to check the odometer as well. However, I still do not understand why the dashboard shows a different value even if it is the case. Thanks.
The EV range displayed on the dash is an estimate, similar to the range estimate that some gas cars have had for years. It helps to first think about how the range estimate works on a gas car. The system knows how much gas is in the tank, then it looks at recent mpg and uses this to calculate an estimated range. However if you have ever driven a car with a range estimate you quickly learn that it cannot be fully relied on. You certainly don't plan your fuel stops based on the range estimate or you can wind up running out of gas. Much better to use the tried and true method of tracking for yourself how many miles you typically get out of a tank of gas and use that to come up with your own estimates when you are on a trip. Especially since you know what type of driving you have coming up, which can greatly affect mpg, whereas the system has no idea what type of driving you are about to do and can only base its estimates on the past.

The EV range estimate works in a similar manner, it looks at how much charge you have, and looks at your recent driving. It calculates an estimated range based on the assumption that your upcoming driving will be similar to your recent driving. But like with a gas car, there's really no way to know how accurate that estimate is unless you measure you actual range using the odometer.
 

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How do I change amps? I am using a level 2 charger at home. Thanks.
Some level 2 chargers have a switch which selects maximum amperage to report to the car. My Siemens charge has a little rotary switch inside that does this. However, I highly doubt that it would make a difference in how much range your car gets from a charge.
 

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I have a 2018 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid Touring model. I purchased it in 2019. When I purchased it I was getting 48 miles or higher with the full charge. After a year or so, I started getting lower and lower range. Now, It is impossible to get more than 38 miles. I live in Sacramento, CA. So, we have mild weather pretty much around the year. I imagine that it is not about the weather.

Any suggestions? Are there any software or firmware update available for these models? Since I purchased the car, no update has been installed.

Thanks for your response in advance!
You should bring it in for battery testing as my 2008 with 45k has maintained its EV mileage
 

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Fairly new EV owner. How do you do a slow charge of 16 amps or less?
Use a level 1 EVSE or determine if your level 2 EVSE has a setting to lower the maximum amperage that it communicates to the vehicle. However, as I stated in a previous post, I doubt that charging at a lower amperage will have any effect on how much range you will see from a fully charged battery.
 

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I also live in Sacramento with a 2018, about 28,000 miles. I am experiencing a decrease in electric range for tha same trip I’ve been making for years. Probably less that 10 miles less, but I used to go the distance before recharging but now switch to gas the last 6 or so miles. I will have the battery checked at Honda next week.
 

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Some level 2 chargers have a switch which selects maximum amperage to report to the car. My Siemens charge has a little rotary switch inside that does this. However, I highly doubt that it would make a difference in how much range your car gets from a charge.
i
I have the same siemens level 2 charger, I've taken it down to 50% (reasonable charge time at 15/16 amps), 25%(7.5 amps) and MIN(very very slow at 6 amps) it does have an impact when I tested it at least.
 

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i
I have the same siemens level 2 charger, I've taken it down to 50% (reasonable charge time at 15/16 amps), 25%(7.5 amps) and MIN(very very slow at 6 amps) it does have an impact when I tested it at least.
I’m interested in hearing your results. I have had range reported as high as 78 miles after charging full tilt at 30 amps with my level 2 EVSE. I’d like to hear how much extra range I would expect from charging at a lower rate. I have charged with a Level 1 which is about as low and slow as you can get but haven’t noticed a difference personally.
 

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I have the same siemens level 2 charger, I've taken it down to 50% (reasonable charge time at 15/16 amps), 25%(7.5 amps) and MIN(very very slow at 6 amps) it does have an impact when I tested it at least.
There would seem to be no reason that charging speed should affect how full the battery gets charged. I realize that faster charging will cause a higher battery temperature, but the car can slow the charging rate on its own if needed. I guess in theory if the battery is warmer the car could end charging early, but I never hear of people saying that charging ends at 90% SOC or whatever, it seems unless something interrupts charging it always charges to either 100% or occasionally to 99%.

Someone theorized that a cooler battery can hold more electricity than a warmer battery, but I don't know if that is a fact or just speculation. Even if true I wouldn't think the difference would be all that noticeable, and again it seems it would be obvious from looking at the SOC after a full charge.

So it would seem to me that any changes in driving range are unconnected to charging speed. If someone experiences differently then I sure wish someone could come up with an explanation for it.

Now to be clear I am talking about actual EV range, which can only be measured using the odometer to see how far you can go on a full charge. As for the displayed EV range which is just an estimate, all bets are off on that one. The guess-o-meter can be all over the place and quite often does not match reality. If there is a theory that charging speed affects the guess-o-meter prediction, I would not consider that to be impossible. But since that would only affect the prediction not the actual EV range, then it would just be a curiosity not an actual problem.
 

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I did the same 45-mile route(90 miles) for two weeks, The 1st week only the OEM honda charger at 240 volts full to 52 miles leaving around 5-6 miles when I got to work, was able to charge at work on a SemaConnect 240v 30A each day to drive back home would be under two miles of range left when I pulled into the driveway 2nd week started using the siemens level 2 charger(@30 amps) at home just enough range to make it to the charging station at work.
 

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I did the same 45-mile route(90 miles) for two weeks, The 1st week only the OEM honda charger at 240 volts full to 52 miles leaving around 5-6 miles when I got to work, was able to charge at work on a SemaConnect 240v 30A each day to drive back home would be under two miles of range left when I pulled into the driveway 2nd week started using the siemens level 2 charger(@30 amps) at home just enough range to make it to the charging station at work.
Did HondaLink show 100% SOC at the end of each of those charging sessions?
 

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Did HondaLink show 100% SOC at the end of each of those charging sessions?
That’s a very good question. And also, is there any other thing that could be affecting it? Is it parked in the garage overnight? How warm is the garage? Does the same Siemens EVSE seem to give longer range if you limit the current to 50% or less? Did you keep track of wind speed/direction on all the days?
 
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