How Long Does It Take To Replace a Hybrid’s Battery?

Replacing the high-voltage battery is one of the most extensive–and expensive–procedures your hybrid vehicle will ever need. But the cost of this service is mostly due to the high cost of the new battery. The actual service takes 1.5 hours on average, and sometimes as little as 15 minutes! There are actually mobile technicians who can swap your hybrid’s battery in a parking lot while you are at home or at work.

How long does it take to replace a hybrid battery?

According to Forbes, a hybrid battery replacement can take 1.5 hours or more. Some makes and models have batteries built into their frame rails or protected by skidplates, so they may take longer to remove.

Two scientists research lithium-ion technology for hybrid and EV replacement battery packs.
EV battery production | David Zorrakino/Europa Press via Getty Images

RELATED: Do You Have To Go to the Dealership To Replace a Hybrid’s Battery?

As technicians gain experience swapping batteries in common makes and models of hybrids, they grow faster at these procedures. Fore example, this mechanic filmed himself replacing a Toyota Prius battery in just 15 minutes:

Toyota estimated that you can expect to spend between $2,000 and $8,000 to replace a dying hybrid battery. But very little of this cost is the service to actually swap the battery. Most of what you’ll pay is the price of the replacement battery.

Do private shops replace hybrid batteries?

Replacing hybrid vehicle batteries is a growing industry. Many automotive technicians now offer hybrid battery replacement services, often at a lower price than the dealerships.

A woman installs a lithium-ion battery in a Chevrolet Volt at a General Motors hybrid vehicle factory.
Chevrolet Volt assembly | Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

RELATED: Is Buying a Used Plug-In Hybrid SUV a Good Idea?

One nationwide chain of hybrid battery replacement centers is Greentec Auto. The company was actually founded by the Razumovsky family of Maryland. They have been mechanics for generations, and when one of their family member’s first-generation Prius batteries wore out they could not find a local shop to refurbish and swap its battery–so they learned to do it themselves.

Today, Greentec is one of many providers that offer new replacement batteries for hybrid vehicles. It also refurbished and sells old batteries to reduce your replacement battery cost. Greentec distinguishes itself by making house calls to swap the battery in your used hybrid car.

When do you need to replace your hybrid’s battery?

Your hybrid battery lifespan will depend on the make and model of your vehicle. As it wears out, you should see your mpg increase. Your battery cooling fan may also end up running constantly. It is worth having a technician take a look at it, because battery failure can leave some vehicles stranded.

Closeup of a RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid charging its battery, a Vermont lawn with fall foliage visible in the background.
RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid | Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images

RELATED: How Much Does Maintenance Cost for a Hybrid SUV?

Hybrid battery anxiety is nearly as common as EV range anxiety. But automakers do their best to engineer batteries that will outlast their hybrid vehicles. Many hybrids come with an eight year, 100,000 mile battery warranty. The length of the warranty of your make/model reflects how long its manufacturer engineered the battery to last for.

Some hybrid vehicle owners claim their batteries last 150,000 miles or more. Others find they fail after as little as 70,000 miles. Many makes and models will offer a warning notification once the battery needs replacement.

Next, learn how the impending lithium shortage may affect replacement battery costs or meet the founders of Greentec in the MotorWeek video below:

RELATED: Will Lithium-Ion EV Batteries Get Cheaper or More Expensive?