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EV battery refurb

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  • 15-09-2023 10:15am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 4


    latest thoughts on EV battery refurb/replacement..will the cost come down in next couple of years🤔

    Post edited by Boards.ie: Mike on


Best Answer

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,711 ✭✭✭zg3409


    In Arklow Earls motors are specialists in EV repair. You can monitor your own battery using leaf spy app to see if it's just one cell that's dodgy.

    Range therapy are Irish specialists in swapping bigger batteries into leafs. They don't do repair. Two main catches, typically they want you to source the battery (there is few used complete packs on the market, particularly larger sizes) and they tend to overall cost more than just swapping to a car with a larger battery . I believe they upgraded at least one car this year.




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Answers

  • Boards.ie Employee Posts: 1,046 ✭✭✭✭✭Boards.ie: Mike


    Moved to a more appropriate forum.



  • Registered Users Posts: 6,711 ✭✭✭zg3409


    What costs do you think apply?

    Most EVs on the road are under warranty so cost is zero. After warranty period it's more likely range will drop slowly and car will be used for more local trips or sold to someone as a second/ local car.

    If you have a fault in a battery outside warranty (car dead, refuses to start), you can often diagnose the issue yourself with the likes of phone apps leaf spy or other similar apps. If it's just one cell of hundreds then that one can be replaced. Tesla modules are 1000 euro each, other brands are available on ebay. There are lots of YouTube videos showing procedure for removing pack and swapping a single module/cell. I am sure more local mechanics will offer these services but there are already Irish specialists.


    Already there is lots of Dublin garages repairing hybrid taxis, even one open 24/7/365 that own hundreds of taxi cars.

    You can also replace the entire battery pack on a leaf within a few hours, allowing the pack to be fixed elsewhere at a later date.

    It is a risk driving any car out of warranty, but prices are dropping. Typically EVs give far less trouble than ICE equivalent.



  • Registered Users Posts: 18,984 ✭✭✭✭Del2005


    Tesla are making their battery packs so they can't be repaired. Bring inside a cast structural component with foam covering then means that they are neatly impossible to get to, it took a team who regularly break down cars a few days to get into the new pack, and when you do get access how do you reapply the foam?

    With more manufacturers following Tesla with massive cast parts, it makes manufacturing cheaper but repair impossible, they might start making access to batteries impractical as well.

    Its easy to fix a battery pack , it might not be possible to do it though.



  • Registered Users Posts: 521 ✭✭✭electricus




  • Registered Users Posts: 22,414 ✭✭✭✭Akrasia


    It makes sense to make the batteries part of the structure of the vehicle to save weight where possible but those parts should still be swappable



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  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 18,997 Mod ✭✭✭✭slave1


    They are swappable as a whole, Tesla have learned that water ingress is by far the number one failure in their battery packs so are sealing them big time

    My stuff for sale on Adverts inc. EDDI, hot water cylinder, roof rails...

    Public Profile active ads for slave1 (adverts.ie)



  • Registered Users Posts: 18,984 ✭✭✭✭Del2005


    That's for end of life. Your car will definitely be dead if you try to access the battery when it's part of the structure. Tesla claims that they can recycle the batteries.





  • Registered Users Posts: 6,711 ✭✭✭zg3409


    I suspect that specialists will still repair them. Using software you can tell exactly where the bad cell is and then only access that area. The foam can be dissolved and in a specialist workshop area they would have the knowledge and equipment to do this. They might swap the whole pack first, then work on it later accessing and replacing only the minimum.

    When I drove old ICE cars I tended to prefer common makes so local garages understood them and knew all the common issues so it could be easily repaired. I also had the software and tools to do some maintenance myself and I could add new car keys, diagnose faults and monitor the engine health. There is already a thriving leaf aftermarket repair and battery swap as they are the oldest and well understood.



  • Registered Users Posts: 4 crunchiefan


    Any Leaf aftermarket battery replacement/refurb specialists in SouthEast?



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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,914 ✭✭✭kanuseeme


    You ever dissolve polystyrene? It just turns into a sticky jelly , its just a bigger mess, then its disposing of that crap, if you can remove it all, honestly more oil based product will be used just to clean that foam than what most people would use to fuel there car for a year.

    I can understand the dry ice blasting.

    Its one cell in 210 pack, all are welded, you might be able to cut one out and replace, now put all that back to the same standard, the foam stuff, making sure the cooling/heating is working, the top cover is destroyed, replace that, other things destroyed also, those little copper wires, the cooling pipe broke in the middle, warranty for the repair.

    its just a mess, no point in deluding yourself, that pack is not going back the same, only use for it is the 2nd hand power bank market, there is value in the pack, I am sure,

    My opinion would be just tear it apart as fast as possible, you loose a few more cells, but its done faster, reuse the cells, as for the car, I don't know, if its half a year over warranty, is it worth putting a new pack back in? even with getting something for the old pack.

    That pack was never designed to be repaired.



  • Registered Users Posts: 33,919 ✭✭✭✭listermint


    They want you to buy a new car. This is all very very purposeful.



  • Registered Users Posts: 4 crunchiefan


    Thats the info i was after..surely this will become a bigger market, upgrading to better bigger range battery..my 2014 Leaf is pristine, just that battery life is around 110km realistically, its pefect as work commute car (50-60km in total daily) with free charging points on site..thats why i bought it, but if i could upgrade to a 40kwh battery(or bigger) id get more use from it..its our runaround 2nd car so fit for purpose as it is... for now!



  • Registered Users Posts: 4 crunchiefan


    Any car breakers out there yet selling 40kwh batteries at a reasonable price? Surely these prices will drop in time as more EVs are in use..just bought my 2014 Leaf, ideal for work commute as free charging points in work (54km total daily) but interested in a reasonably priced upgrade to 40kwh battery in next year or so



  • Registered Users Posts: 521 ✭✭✭electricus


    That’s not good news for anyone hoping to keep one of these going after the warranty expires. Hopefully the rules will be updated to encourage manufacturers to find a better way to water seal batteries, as they did for phones, etc.



  • Registered Users Posts: 11,336 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin


    Maybe add a bit more info to your opening post, this thread took a bit of a turn from where you started 😂

    The topic of battery swaps has come up many times, and you need to be prepared for a few realities

    One, it won't increase the value of the car. If you put a €9k battery into a €5k Leaf, it isn't worth €14k, it's still worth €5k at best

    Second, you need to declare it to your insurance and have a mechanic sign off on the work. This could affect your premium

    So if you're planning to run the car until it dies (which could be a very long time) then swap away, but if the idea is to sell the car at some point then just be prepared that it won't be worth what you put into it

    "The internet never fails to misremember" - Sebastian Ruiz, aka Frost



  • Registered Users Posts: 11,336 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin


    As much as I agree, and I like ripping on Tesla, it's worth considering they Tesla themselves will need to replace the cells at some point

    I'm pretty sure the warranty doesn't cover people getting a new car if there's a slight issue with one battery cell

    So they're going to need some way for the workshop to get into the battery

    It'll no doubt be more involved than the current pack (which you literally have to tear the aluminium cover off to get at) but it'll exist

    "The internet never fails to misremember" - Sebastian Ruiz, aka Frost



  • Registered Users Posts: 18,984 ✭✭✭✭Del2005


    Tesla and other manufacturers are going for ease of manufacture not ease of repair. We need government's to force them to make cars repairable even if that means they loose manufacturing efficiency.

    Giga casts are brilliant to increase manufacturing efficiency, casts are impossible to repair. There's no way to access the batteries in new Teslas without destroying the car as the batteries are built into the structure. Tesla say that their batteries are recyclable, they never say that they are repairable. Musk is quick to shoot down posts he doesn't like, he's staying very quiet on the breakdown videos



  • Registered Users Posts: 12,116 ✭✭✭✭KCross


    So they're going to need some way for the workshop to get into the battery

    Not really. Like alot of goods they design them for replacement, not repair. So, they'll just give you another battery and tear your one down for recycling.



  • Registered Users Posts: 33,919 ✭✭✭✭listermint


    Nope, they want you to replace the entire thing. This stuff is extremely purposeful. Only for the likes of the EU pushing for rights to repair then there would be no push back for this stuff. Cars with shortened planned life cycles unrepairable by anyone other than the manufacturer.

    Sure you'll have people harping on about opportunity for crafty independents to get around these built in plans. But the point is the plan is the problem not the solution.

    Its as cynical as the move to subscription everything. Where people don't own anything anymore. See BMW and their heated seats crap.

    I'm glad we have the EU at least pulling their weight on these things are people are easily lulled into thinking it's grand.

    Until its not and 5 year old cars are recycled off the road.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 11,336 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin


    But if the battery is part of the chassis then it can't be replaced

    So there has to be some way to do it

    "The internet never fails to misremember" - Sebastian Ruiz, aka Frost



  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 7,943 Mod ✭✭✭✭liamog


    You won't be able to sell a car in the EU with a non replaceable battery. Manufacturers also won't be able to restrict that to only OEM replacements.




  • Registered Users Posts: 18,984 ✭✭✭✭Del2005


    When is that coming into law, the Directive is for EOL vehicles which needs to be revised and the regulation is 400 pages, or is the EU model Y made differently to the one in the tear down? There's no way to repair that car and with more manufacturers going to giga presses they won't be repairable either.

    It also doesn't say that the repairs have to be economicly viable, everything can be fixed with enough time and money. Replacing the whole structure of a car is possible, what will it cost?



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,914 ✭✭✭kanuseeme


    The battery is replaceable from what I understand, you probably have to buy the pack with seats, carpets and center console. 10 bolts outside about the same inside and it drops down.

    If you look at the video or one of the others by the same people, you can see a bead of sealant going the whole way around the pack, now the interesting part is the sealant has a pressure mark from where it was mated to the body, a nice good water tight fit, but the bad part is also has it 3 places where there is no mark in the sealant from mating, so not a water tight fit, water would get into the cabin if its height is above that seal.

    In fairness its located about the height of the door, so water in door or in from battery pack is possible.

    I can see reuse of the pack, repair is possible but probably way cheaper and easier to buy another.



  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 7,943 Mod ✭✭✭✭liamog


    Regulation 2023/1542 came into effect in August. It takes a bit of time for changes to follow on legislation to work it's way through the system.

    The pack from the tear down is replaceable without destroying the car, given the clear regulatory requirement I can't seem them developing it further to remove that possibility. Notice the lack of destroyed car in this screenshot




  • Registered Users Posts: 18,984 ✭✭✭✭Del2005


    The individual batteries aren't though, a few dead cells and you need to buy a whole new battery pack and casting.

    Then you have the issue that castings can't be repaired. An RTC could easily damage the casting which means that you have to replace the batteries as they can't be removed.


    As I thought. The car "is" repairable, but no one will ever repair one.



  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 7,943 Mod ✭✭✭✭liamog


    As shown in the tear down, the casting doesn't form part of the battery assembly. I'm not entirely sure what it's relevance is to EV battery refurbs

    Post edited by liamog on


  • Registered Users Posts: 18,984 ✭✭✭✭Del2005


    To refurb the battery you have to access it. To access that battery you have to destroy the metal cover and remove the foam. Then when you have refurbed the battery how do you get the foam and metal cover reassembled? How many companies will have access to the presses required to put it together?



  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 7,943 Mod ✭✭✭✭liamog


    Are you trying to ask how many companies won't have access to a process that isn't used in the manufacture of the battery pack? Why does it matter, if they aren't gigacasting the components to build the structural pack then for sure a repair effort won't need it either.

    There's a lot to be disappointed with in regard to Tesla's approach to repairability of the structural pack, but it's replaceability isn't one of them, and the giga casting of other parts of the frame do not impact the regulatory requirement to make the packs replaceable.



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