2008 Prius won't start

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by noname87, Jun 13, 2020.

  1. noname87

    noname87 Junior Member

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    I have a 2008 that hasn't been used in three months due to the virus. I knew the car was going to be sitting for a while. I had the 12V battery checked and it was fine. The battery is less than three years old. I also turned off the smart key function (at least i am reasonably sure i did). Unknown to me, there was a gps plugged into the 12V outlet but it should have been off. Today I tried starting it and it was dead. Nothing. No interior lights.

    I tried jump starting from the rear with no luck. I then tried from the front. I had it hook up to my RAV4 which was idling at a slightly elevated RPM for thirty minutes. When I press power button, the power button led is on, the parking button led is on, the check engine light is on and there is a sound from the dash. That it. No screen, no radio,no fans. The only other thing working is the emergency flashers.

    Any ideas? My first thought is that the battery is so drain that even with it hook up to a working car that the voltage is isn't high enough. My second thought is a shorted battery but then the flasher shouldn't work.

    Unfortunately all my tools are at home (this is my daughter"s car).
     
  2. Bdro1987

    Bdro1987 New Member

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    Google tells you exactly how to do it just put year model an won't start
     
  3. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    12 V battery "tests" give notoriously inaccurate results.
    Given the age and circumstances, I think you are right in suspecting it even after the "test".
    Also could be loose or corroded 12 V main cables.
     
  4. TMR-JWAP

    TMR-JWAP Senior Member

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    Any chance you connected the jumpers backwards? Even for a second?

    And 3 months is too much, even for a brand new 12v battery. That battery is DOA. You can try to recover it, but it's probably 50/50. Odds are also very good that the HV Battery is now going to code out due to some of the weaker modules self discharging during the 3 month idle period. Most battery rebuilders have a statement in their warranty paperwork that they will void their warranty if the car is not driven for a 30 day period.
     
  5. audiodave

    audiodave Active Member

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    Trickle charger the 12 volt and see what happens. Good luck.
    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  6. George W

    George W Active Member

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    Both batteries are probably discharged, and both need a kick in the pants. Pull your 12 volt battery, take it to an auto parts place and let them charge it fully for you.

    Your high-voltage pack could also be low enough not to be able to turn the gas engine.
     
  7. noname87

    noname87 Junior Member

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    I tried again after a couple of hours of the car sitting with being connected to the RAV4 and it is completely dead. I was planning on pulling the battery and fully charging at home (3 hours away).. For future reference can it be charged while in the car?

    So the 12V battery can turn the car on?

    I am surprise that the main battery could fully discharge in that time period. I also was surprise that the 12V battery was dead after 3 months with the smart key off. What is drawing power? Also why won't it start when connected to a running car?

    Normally I would troubleshoot more but the car is in an apartment complex with little access to electric power.
     
  8. TMR-JWAP

    TMR-JWAP Senior Member

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    If your car has been sitting in an apartment complex for 3 months, you may want to check to see if your cats have been stolen/O2 sensor wires clipped, etc. with possible electrical damage...
     
  9. George W

    George W Active Member

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    The Prius 12V boots the computers that control the car, but the gasoline engine is turned over by the high voltage pack.
     
  10. noname87

    noname87 Junior Member

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    Why can't I jump start the car?
     
  11. George W

    George W Active Member

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    1. Bad 12V battery.

    Take it to the auto parts place and have them give it a full charge.

    If they verify the 12-volt battery is good and is fully charged then,

    2. Your High Voltage battery may be too low to turn the gas motor over.

    As was mentioned before, that 12 volt battery only boots the electronics in the car, it has no ability to turn the gas engine.

    Get a good, fully-charged 12 volt battery in your Prius.
     
  12. TMR-JWAP

    TMR-JWAP Senior Member

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    Refer to post #8. There have been MANY instances of Gen 2 catalytic converters being stolen, and when the thieves rip the O2 sensor wires apart, the wires (4 of them) short out and cause an electrical failure, rendering the car inoperable. Take a glance under the car and see if the front half of the exhaust system is missing and some wires hanging down from the area under the passenger front seat.
     
  13. noname87

    noname87 Junior Member

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    Thanks. I pulled the battery today. The no-load voltage is 6 volts so it doesn't appear to be shorted. I will try charging it and see if it takes a charge.

    Was surprised to see the warning label to not charge the battery an greater than 4 (appropriately) amps for no more than 10 hours. My regular charger is 12A/12v so I guess that is out. I do have a trickle charger that should work over a couple days. I will also check the local shops to see if they will charge at that lower rate.

    Is it really possible the main traction battery is too low to start the car. I though the software never allows the battery to go that low.
     
  14. George W

    George W Active Member

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    Once you're able to get the car started, you can use a Smart App such as Doctor Prius/ Hybrid Assistant/ Torque that can display the High Voltage value for you. It's State-of-Charge is maintained only when the car is in Ready mode.

    The Toyota 12V AGM battery has a charge rate of 10%. That's why it is 4 amps.
     
  15. noname87

    noname87 Junior Member

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    Unfortunately, there is a possibility that the cables were backwards.

    I read the manual cover to cover. Never say a warning that the car had to be driven every month. Did see a warning to turn off the smart key of the car was parked for more than two (don't remember) weeks which I did.
     
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  16. noname87

    noname87 Junior Member

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    Okay, looks like the inverter could be fried from reverse polarity. Based on reading here, it is worth checking a few fuses before calling in the pros before giving up. What fuses do I need to check. I know there is a 5A fuse in the back. Looking at the shop manual (Benty), there is a fusable link block in the luggage compartment, What is the procedure for checking that? I assume that can only come from Toyota.

    After those two, any advice.

    I am handy and a former engineer so I handle the basics. However, I am not keen on going near the high voltage side. I do not have the necessary protective gear.

    Based on the repair cost (any idea, I am guessing 600-1000+), I am debating the wisdom of repairing this. The car has 160,000 miles. I guesstimate the car is worth of 2000-3000 (has some cosmetic damage). The AC has a leak and probably needs a evaporator coil ($1600+), the water pump has a minor weepage (350+) the hoses are orginal so thats more (quoted 350-700). Whose knows how long the traction battery last. I have heard 180-200K but varies greatly. That adds 1500-3500.

    I love the car but am wondering if the $4000 (not counting the future traction battery cost) is worth it.
     
  17. George W

    George W Active Member

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    The high-voltage battery is like Christmas tree lights. The modules are all connected in series. This is is why if you remove the orange safety plug completely, you are interrupting the circuit, then the HV pack is safe to work around. When working around the high-voltage pack, the orange safety plug is the first thing to disconnect, and the last thing to reconnect upon completion of work.
     
  18. TMR-JWAP

    TMR-JWAP Senior Member

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    The thread below has a a photo of the fusible link in the engine compartment fuse box. The circled area shows the portion that normally blows when a reverse jump is accidentally performed. I've repaired these a few times, and there is always a couple or three additional fuses blown. I always just pull them one at a time and check every fuse.

    Reversed Jump Start | PriusChat

    The fusible link in the luggage compartment is a 120 amp fuse located in the positive battery terminal assembly.
     
  19. noname87

    noname87 Junior Member

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    Thanks. Where is this plug located?
     
  20. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    I don't think so.
    The pack still contains high voltage and breaking one single connection does NOTHING to change that.
    There still are lots of stupid things that one can do that will have BAD outcomes.

    That plug is intended to remove the high voltage from the REST of the places that it normally appears in the car........NOT the battery itself.
     
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