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Battery disconnect and Park button

Discussion in 'Gen III 2010+ Prius Technical Discussion' started by bondo, May 3, 2011.

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  1. bondo

    bondo Junior Member

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    Ok have two questions, first easy one. Was driving around and almost pressed the Park button, I hope that while moving this is disabled, but just wanted to check with everyone.
    Second, was kind of told there is a "service" disconnect in the back of the car to disconnect the 600V battery during service or collision. Don't want fireman to go cutting into it with saw and hit the 600V live wire. There should be a hole to stick a rod into which disconnects the relay which removes the battery? Anyone know where this is?

    First week driving 100 mile day to work, average 54MPG. Oh and gotta love the PWR mode, seems like people see Prius and want to pass...

    Bondo©
  2. jdcollins5

    jdcollins5 Senior Member

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    First, pressing the Park button above about 2 mph will only result in shifting to neutral. No problem. Below about 2 mph and it will set the parking pawl and give you a pretty good jolt.

    Second, read your Owner's Manual carefully and understand where the HV battery disconnect is located. You have to remove the cargo area cover over the spare tire and remove the plastic tray to get to the disconnect. Be sure you understand where this is located so that you can alert firemen and other rescue personnel.
  3. bondo

    bondo Junior Member

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    Thanks for the help, I didn't see it in the manual, just the part for the 12V battery, but will go back over it.
    Bondo©




  4. spiderman

    spiderman wretched

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    The HV battery (about 200volts) is automatically disconnected (relays) in the event of a collision or at least one significant enough (as it is when you shutdown the car). Most rescue personnel these days are briefed on hybrids from what I heard.
  5. jdcollins5

    jdcollins5 Senior Member

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    Here is a document from Toyota that might be helpful.

    Attached Files:

  6. macman408

    macman408 Devil's Advocate General

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    Yes, I was going to post that same guide.
    For those who don't want to open it and read to page 20/22, they say either:
    1. Ensure the READY light is off, or press the power button so it turns off; keep the key >16 feet from the vehicle; and disconnect the 12V battery to prevent accidental starting.
    OR
    2. Open the hood, and pull a couple fuses. In the event that you don't know which two, pull 'em all. Then disconnect the 12V battery.
    And in either case, there can still be power in the HV system (presumably stored in capacitors), so don't cut the orange cables!

    Although different from a gasoline vehicle, I think most first responders are probably at least vaguely familiar with the risks of a hybrid by now. And the car designers aren't trying to make it hard for them; the HV cables are orange, which really screams "don't touch me!". And they run along the bottom of the car, like the fuel line (which is not orange, but I bet they'll avoid cutting it just the same). And as noted, in normal situations, the battery will disconnect itself in an accident, though first responders generally have to assume that the disconnect system has failed, and will act as though everything is still energized.

    And yes, Park will act as Neutral above some speed; I've heard it's around 10 mph, but don't try it. I've heard it's a VERY uncomfortable jolt to throw the car into park when it's moving, and it puts extra stress on the car.
  7. David Beale

    David Beale Senior Member

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    The line carrying the high voltage is run along the bottom of the car. Most "rescue" cutting is into the top portion of the car.
    At any rate, even if the car is in "ready" and someone manages to "saw into" the 200VDC line, it will trip the GFI (Ground Fault Interrupter) if they ground -either- the +ve or -ve line. The GFI will completely disconnect both lines -inside- the battery case. Within milliseconds. So if you are contemplating suicide, look elsewhere. You can't do it with the Prius. Unless you drive over a high cliff. ;)
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