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Hybrid Malfunction

Discussion in 'Gen II Prius Main Forum' started by calsarah13, Sep 4, 2013.

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  1. calsarah13

    calsarah13 Junior Member

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    Hi all,

    A few months ago, my Prius started making some weird noise, and after several days, several hundred dollars, and calls by the dealer to the regional service rep, it was determined that the noise was coming from the transaxle. Toyota offered a 50% discount on the part, but it was still going to cost me more than $3k to replace a component that hadn't even triggered a failure warning. I decided to keep driving and save up for a used transaxle, should the transaxle actually fail.

    I returned to my car on Monday after having driven it 35 miles and left it parked in the hot sun for about eight hours. The car turned on fine. I then turned it off for a few minutes while I retrieved something I'd forgotten. When I returned, the car turned on, but just about every single warning light turned on, and the top of the screen was displaying a red car outline with an exclamation point in it.

    The car would not go into D or R, but would go into N. If I took my foot off the brake, I could not depress it fully again afterwards. Briefly, a message about a failure of the transmission to go into P displayed, then the display went out.

    I turned the car on and of a number of times, each time with the same result. Eventually I gave up and got a ride home. My uncle agreed to try the car again on Tuesday, and have it towed to the nearest Toyota dealer if necessary.

    Well, on Tuesday, the car turned on and went into gear, albeit with warning lights on. My uncle was able to drive it fine. After turning it off and on again, all of the warning lights extinguished.

    So my question is: do I chalk this up to a funky overheated computer issue or is this something I should have the dealer run a diagnostic on? I don't want to get stuck 35 miles from home again... I looked up the specific warning lights and they seem to indicate a Hybrid Failure. My hybrid is still covered by warranty.
  2. desmondlee

    desmondlee Member

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    if your car is still under warranty, why do you have to pay for anything?
  3. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    transaxle is not covered under the hybrid warranty.
  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    check the 12v battery.
    KK6PD likes this.
  5. calsarah13

    calsarah13 Junior Member

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    I know...
  6. calsarah13

    calsarah13 Junior Member

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    I was going to replace it at my 90k mile service (I'm at 89,600 or so miles right now). Good thinking!
  7. calsarah13

    calsarah13 Junior Member

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    The only part of my car that is under warranty is the hybrid engine.
  8. nh7o

    nh7o Off grid since 1980

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    Yes, check the 12V battery. Leaving the Prius for 8 hours in the hot sun is not a good thing, as it can overheat the HV battery as well as stress the electronics. In any case, use a windscreen reflector, and pull the tonneau cover over the back.
  9. uart

    uart Senior Member

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    Almost definitely a weak 12V battery. (You probably left a door ajar or an interior light on while you retrieved that item on the first occurrence).

    As for the transaxle. If you have not already done so then you really should change the transmission fluid (Toyota WS ATF).
  10. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    actually, it's the hv battery and related components. (inverter, etc.) in cali for 10 years 150,000 miles.
  11. calsarah13

    calsarah13 Junior Member

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    The Downtown Oakland Toyota dealer did that while investigating the weird noises coming from the transaxle.
  12. SteveLee

    SteveLee Active Member

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    With any weird electronic issues with the Prius always suspect the 12V until that is proven to be an impossible source. Have you checked it with the on-board system? Is it the original battery? It will be interesting to see if the "weird noise" is eliminated with a new 12V.
  13. dorunron

    dorunron Senior Member

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    Don't want to sound negative, but I wonder why you haven't taken the time to check with Luscious Garage. They have repaired transaxles in the past. There are chains inside the Prius transaxle and there are a few post's on the web about those chains wearing out in taxicabs. It looks like your situation is a rarity. As Patrick Wong stated in a different thread that you started, the transaxles in the Prius don't fail that often. There are a few cases, and yours seems to be one of them.

    FWIW, the dealers (Toyota) are always more expensive than alternative sources of repair. Luscious Garage is well known for their excellent work on the Prius. It just might be worth your while to have them take a look at your car.

    Luscious Garage | Blog | Gen 2 Prius (2004-2009) Transmission Failure, P0AA6, P0A92, P0A7A