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Prius battery life and replacement cost?

Discussion in 'Gen II Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by morris, Oct 31, 2005.

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  1. morris

    morris New Member

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    My wife and I are considering the purchase of a new Prius. Does anyone how long the batteries last or what they're replacement costs are? How does the car behave when the batteries are nearing replacement?

    Does anyone know when the 2006 Prius' will be available?

    thanks, Morris
  2. seasalsa

    seasalsa Active Member

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    Morris,
    There is a great search feature on this site that can answer your questions much better than I, however I will give it a shot.

    There is sno real answer to your question as with the exception of accident damage there is no record of a 2004 or later Prius battery failing. If it should fail there is an 8 year 100,00 mile warranty.
  3. tochatihu

    tochatihu Senior Member

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    Welcome to PriusChat, Morris. Prius HV battery replacements have been rare in the 2001-2003 model, and perhaps none at all in the newer model yet. I believe the US warranty is 100,000 miles in most states and 150k in Calif. and a few other states.

    Just yesterday I heard Dave Hermance (one of Toyota's chief engineers) say that a replacement battery for the classic model costs $2500 and that the new model is less (it's smaller). I had previously heard numbers closer to $4K. He also mentioned Toyota's lab testing of batteries to 150k miles with no measurable degradation.

    The Odometer Champ is probably Andrew Grant's Prius taxi fleet in Vancouver BC. No battery replacements there yet.

    Sad to say, a steady supply of used HV batteries comes from wrecked vehicles. These typically sell for $400-$1000. This is the alternative to buying new.

    Hypothetically, a battery failure by slow degradation would probably present itself as reduced power, performance, or fuel economy. There might be warning lights on the display, that would lead the technician to test the HV battery.
  4. Maytrix

    Maytrix New Member

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    All I'll add is that I certainly don't think potential battery replacement should be a consideration. There are plenty of other components in any vehicle, that are just as unlikely to fail during the lifetime of the car that could be just as expensive to replace.

    As far as when 2006 models will be available - I don't think I've seen any hard facts yet. Probably the only way we'll know for sure is when someone posts that they've picked on up.
  5. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    because of automatic features and a dedicated computer designed to take care of and monitor the battery, expected failure rate for life of vehicle (they used 180,000 miles) was less than 1%

    there has not been a traction battery replaced as of yet due to wear and tear. replacement costs will go down just like any new technology does as it becomes popular. current costs are at the $4,000 range give or take a grand plus install (since it wouldnt be much if not out of warantee)

    one thing i did, (now dont know how well this translates as there is too much i dont know, casing, packaging, special circuitry for multi-battery setups, etc) but i went to batteries plus and priced 28 7.2 volt NiMH batteries and they were 28.72* 28 = $800 or the extended duty batteries 36.72*28=$1000....

    so like i said, not really a comparison, but as you can see, its the technology that is the expensive part, not the materials. that tells me that the cost will go down.

    i fully expect the price to be around $1500 in a few years after there is couple million on the road. when there is that much market, there will be competition and we will benefit.
  6. Charles Suitt

    Charles Suitt Senior Member

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    :rolleyes: Main (Traction) Battery is not likely to be a problem, particularly with the 10y/100,000m warranty (15y/150,000m in California). However, the main battery for a current model Prius is currently available on eBay... The link:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/2004-2005-toyota-Prius...1QQcmdZViewItem

    The Seller appears to be "parting out" a wrecked Prius. Seems the wildly varying estimates, as high as $6,000, are unrealistic.
  7. Alabama

    Alabama New Member

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    I think I read in the owner's manuel somewhere that the battery will last like 150,000 miles and then right there along with that statement I'm pretty sure it said too the reason the battery lasts so long is because of the way it is utilized by the computer. Which is that the battery is never allowed to get too discharged nor fully charged, instead the battery is kept in a suspended medium charge. I would like to know if someone else can confirm this.
  8. Alabama

    Alabama New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(seasalsa @ Oct 31 2005, 11:59 AM) [snapback]147901[/snapback]</div>

    I tell you what this site ought to just be made into a Prius Owners Manuel cause there really isn't any reason to ask questions here when every question you can fathom has already been answered by someone somewhere. I just did a search for my question above and found the answer. http://priuschat.com/index.php?showtopic=1...battery+charges
    So nevermind.
  9. Neicy

    Neicy Member

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    The HV battery is computer controlled to keep it's charge at no lower than 40% and no more than 80% SOC (State of Charge) in the Generation II (2004-2008) Prius. If you run out of gas and try to drive on battery only you will not be able to do it for more than a short distance, at which time your dash will light up like a Christmas tree and shut you down. The Gen I (2001-2003) did not have this safety feature, so if one ran out of gas and did not heed the warning in the manual against driving on battery only, it was possible to drain the HV battery below 40% and kill it. So you are correct. It seems to seek about 5-6 bars, or about 60% SOC. But even when it is at 2 purple bars it is still at 40%. It does an excellent job of taking care of itself and we just get to drive it and have fun!

    PS. There is a PC member with 322,700 miles on the original battery in his 2002 Classic Prius - still going strong.
  10. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North Staff Member

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    holy thread revival!

    Yeah also Toyota didn't really give a reason for the condition at 150,000 miles. Does Toyota mean the battery will fail or degrade a certain amount at 150,000 miles?
    1 person likes this.
  11. Alabama

    Alabama New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Tideland Prius @ Sep 30 2007, 11:21 PM) [snapback]519680[/snapback]</div>

    Now that could very well be an actual question that just might deserve a little acknowledgment. LOL. Just kidding that's a good question, I don't know.
  12. gippah

    gippah New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Maytrix @ Oct 31 2005, 01:22 PM) [snapback]147969[/snapback]</div>

    Why not? Paying $2500 (plus labor) for a car repair once the warranty is gone is something everyone should consider. Some people may be making payments on the car after it is outside of the warranty period.-

    Most Priuses will not have battery problems during the life of the car -- at least for the first owner -- but does this mean that one should not consider this problem? If you can afford a $22,500 car but not a $25,000 car, that potential $2500 repair becomes a deal-breaker.

    Most people get rid of their cars when they hit a repair that they perceive to cost more than the car is worth. A $2500 repair 8 years in is certainly going to be one of these problems and is worthy of consideration. And the fact of the matter is that no one here knows if the batteries will die at that point because the Prius hasn't been around that long yet.

    However, what another user posted here is a good point. When most rechargeable batteries die, they do not die completely. Instead, they hold less of a charge. So very likely when these batteries start to near the end of their life cycles, they will simply be drained faster. This means less efficiency when trying to do 0-60 bursts and when sitting in traffic for an hour or more, but not necessarily a dead car.
  13. lenjack

    lenjack Member

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    there is one poster here that showed a Prius with 317K miles on the original battery. Some big city cabs are over 240K.
  14. SoCo

    SoCo New Member

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    Neicy is right about the Gen 1 cars. Last week I was touring through a state park in my 2001 Prius, driving at a walking speed for 30 minutes or so and therefore, in electric motor mode only. That drained the battery which triggered the doomsday warning light. This slow driving evidently killed off the battery with just 67,000 miles on the odometer. The good news: I took the car in today and was told the eight year warranty expires in 3 days, the new battery replacement is covered at no cost. Whew.

    I'm speculating that the prolonged slow driving killed off the battery, but perhaps the battery was failing anyway, and this was just the final blow.

    Lesson for other Gen 1 cars, have the battery health checked before you hit the 8 years/100,000 mile marker, if it isn't already too late. I lucked out, another week and it would cost me, what, $3,000??
  15. Flying White Dutchman

    Flying White Dutchman Senior Member

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    maybe low mile's on a prius is a bad thing?
  16. N3FOL

    N3FOL Member

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    That's it...67K in 8 years time. You need to drive that baby more often.
  17. rigormortis

    rigormortis Active Member

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    is toyota still replacing entire packs ? or are they replacing individual cells now?
  18. Manksgloob

    Manksgloob Member

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    The tech I spoke with said they will replace the whole thing and not individual cells, to avoid issues of having cells of different ages outlasting others in the pack.
  19. longterm

    longterm Member

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    Not to cast cold water on your assertion, but I have a 2007 Prius that I just got back from the shop. The battery failed.

    I turned the car on one afternoon at the grocery store, and the front panel lit up like a Christmas tree. There is a large red triangular warning light; it lit, along with the brakes, transmission, and engine warning lights.

    I brought it to the local dealer where I bought it, and after putting it on the diagnostic machine, they determined that the battery had failed.

    This was on the July 29, 2009. I got the car back today, August 25th. My car was out of commission for almost 4 weeks.

    The battery was backordered, and I was told that it was being shipped from Japan. The words "container ship" sent shivers down my spine.

    Finally, when it arrived in California last week, they FedExed it to me, and I got my car this morning.

    My extended warranty covers my Prius for 100,000 miles, including the battery. However, the warranty company excludes batteries, and since the failure was my battery (albeit not the type of battery their warranty was originally talking about), they refused to pay for a rental car.

    I rented a car for almost 4 weeks; Toyota, to their huge credit, picked up the entire rental costs and is reimbursing me.

    Unfortunately, batteries do fail sometimes; as much as I love my Prius, I suffered through this, not wanting to tell anyone about it lest they think less of this amazing car.
  20. Celtic Blue

    Celtic Blue New Member

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    WTF??? You just responded to a 4 year old post about what was then a relatively new vehicle. Geez, what is it with folks dragging up outdated threads recently.
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