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2010 hard rattle at start and idle

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by MikeV, Aug 13, 2023.

  1. MikeV

    MikeV Junior Member

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    So I recently was trying to diagnose a tire monitor issue, that seems least of my problems. I have a 2010 with 186K had an engine light on\off over past year. When checked it was a p401 Ibelieve. I attempted getting a local diy to clean the erg but never found someone willing or through communication understood what I was looking to do. FF about a week ago I was noticing a rough ide if the hybrid battery was low and I was at a light or slow moving traffic. it would resume normal after I got past 25mph and battery charged up. The car it self maintains power.
    Yesterday I was looking online for used priuses as I do to maybe get into something newer and sell this one. This local guy replied he works on priuses and said he could come to me to check out mine. We met he plugged in his scanner and it had a p301 code. The car had a bit of a rough idle start but nothing worse than a few days befoe. He was saying I would need new engine aka rebuilt from lord know where. Full disclusure I am not super mechanically savy. I know just enough about the standards and too disabled to try to work on my own...
    Anyway he said I would also need a new cat based on the p401 code causing damage.... He said he would buy mine for 1500.. I was somewhat skeptical but thats just the times we live in...
    My reserve over flow tank is where it should be. there was no discoloration. my oil was very low but normal color. had oil change back in may.

    After he left I started it back up and the hybrid batt was 2 bars so the rattle was very rough.. I probably will try to get into something else if I can but in the meantime this is the only vehicle I have and well dont have others willing to drive me around to look at potential cars I can get into.

    If infact this is the headgasket can I still drive for a bit and try to look at some car lots etc.. I have some appt coming up as well.. or will this just die suddenly while driving potentially.

    I think if I get it back out to charge to hybrid and try to avoid stop and go traffic it will or should drive ok for now.

    I have been searching countless videos etc mainly youtube where others have same problem and put a can of bars gasket seal in the radiator overflow and that solves there issue for awhile... some say months? this would bide me some time to get into something new.

    please be helpful if replying.. I am not a mechanic or DIY wish I was but didnt get that training in a single mother household growing up. I respect those of you who can diy.
     
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  2. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    P0301 is a code indicating a misfire. Misfires can be caused by many things, including some very simple ones, and misfiring for any reason in a Prius, because of the way the engine and transmission interact, can end up sounding like an earthquake in an anvil factory.

    A person who would like to buy your car for $1500 has an incentive to focus on scary possibilities.

    As described in lots of threads around here, if misfiring is because of an incipient head gasket failure, a more common symptom might be some rattling right when the engine starts and then clearing up. If the engine is consistently misfiring while it sits there and charges the battery, it could be worthwhile to check other, simpler reasons for misfiring.

    For example, this old article is still a PriusChat classic. Owner unloaded a Prius at scrap price 'cause it ran like a box of rocks, sounded catastrophic. Repair: one spark plug.

    https://aecs.net/techniek2012/March%20prius.pdf

    P0420 would be a catalyst code. P0401 is not a catalyst code, but an EGR code. I don't remember any reports of an EGR problem indicated by P0401 causing a catalyst problem.

    You could get a little friendlier with the dipstick, and make sure that doesn't keep happening.
     
  3. MikeV

    MikeV Junior Member

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    i appreciate the reply. i agree with the oil. im usually after it but lots going on with health at the moment. i did have sparks replaced a year and half ago. the guy was doing it as a side gig but he seemed to know his stuff.

    on a side note this could be an issue or longshot. to save money a local gas chain had all levels of gas on sale july 4th for 1.776 and i already had a half tank so i filled up at pump then went home and had 4 gas cans various sizes and filled them up. one can had old gas so i put that into a seperate container and rinsed it out well. would or could bad gas be an issue. the issue started about a week ago so i have been adding those containers in as i go infact the 2nd time adding i somewhat overfilled. gas didnt poor out of the fill but i could tell i exceeded what a pump would do. the car remained on full pips for 3 weeks and about 160miles then the pips started to go down. i was concerned the gauge was messed up but i believe it ok now
     
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  4. Tombukt2

    Tombukt2 Senior Member

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    That's wild because in all four of my Prius I feel those suckers up until the gas belches back out at me and then some in the generation too I stretch that bladder out more than a pregnant woman stomach guaranteed. The last 08 I just bought the lady told me the gas gauge hadn't worked in years just flashes I said don't worry it to be on in a few minutes couple hours later the display came on the gas gauge stopped flashing and it's been working ever since. Oh well
     
  5. Eddie25

    Eddie25 Active Member

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    Spark plugs are a highly counterfeit item so the fact that they were changed, especially by a side gig guy, actually makes it MORE likely that they're causing an issue. I'd want to have those checked/replaced before I did anything else.

    After that a coil swap test is super quick and easy just to rule a bad coil.

    But, the EGR system and the intake do need to be cleaned. A clogged intake can cause rough running at idle. You could even just have it inspected and ask them to show you the EGR passage runners, if they're clogged then that's an issue.

    All that could be done by an amateur in an hour or two (the inspecting not the cleaning).

    It's not until then that'd I'd even start thinking head gasket or engine mechanical.

    You could probably easily get $2500 for the car, I'd think even close to $4000, maybe more. I doubt the engine is bad, but it's gonna need maintenance.
     
  6. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    are you losing any coolant?
     
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  7. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Luddite

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    The EGR system, including intake manifold, will be near-solid clogged by now, and head gasket failure started. Sounds like at cylinder one, the usual point. A boroscope inspection of the cylinders is the simplest check.
     
  8. MikeV

    MikeV Junior Member

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    no that at this point. I mistakenly had a guy i didnt know who lived fairly close stop by he said oh i can check the spark plugs and that will either eliminate or correct issue. mind you had all 4 replace 1.5yrs ago by someone else who knew there way arounf a prius and the ones he pulled said were not really that bad.
    the guy today was rough getting the covering off near where to get to them. grant it there are a ton of screws but.. he broke some clips lost a screw into the frame couldnt find it. He pulled the long injectors? that sit above the plug on cylinder 1 and 2 both looked very clean. he couldnt get the plug out of either 1 or 2 with 3 different socks. he had 5/8 that should have worked unless someone know different. Anyhow there did seem to be alot of gunked oil behind the gasket assebly

    it doesnt appesr losing any coolent the reservoir is still 50% and looks fairly pink. I had someone try to pull the spark plugs today. he couldnt get 1 or 2 out using a 5/8 sockets and he had three 5/8 sockets. He was a rough taking stuff apart and back together so we agreed to not see one another. When he pulled cylinders 1 and 2 out they were dry and clean. from the top to top of plug since he couldnt get them out was dry. there seemed to be alot of oil and gunk on the backside of the manifold? where the cylinder and plugs go.
     
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  9. Eddie25

    Eddie25 Active Member

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    This doesn't instill the most confidence. It's not 5/8 first of all. Any photos? As much as being clean and dry you're looking for wear on the tips. The counterfeit ones aren't iridium, they work but they wear quickly (1.5 years sounds about right). Did you get a good look at the tips?

    When I had my intake (egr runners) clog, the tell-tale sign was that cylinder 4 spark plug was dark. Cylinder 1 clogs first and then something happens that causes the cylinder 4 plug to get dark. That is to say, you really want to check all of them.

    The 'long injectors' are the "coils", which can cause misfires as well. If you put the wiper cowl back on you missed an opportunity to swap cylinder 1 coil with another cylinder to see if the issue follows the coil or not.

    I'd try to find someone who knows what they're doing. (edit: I mean that in regards to the guy who checked your plugs).
     
  10. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Luddite

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    The plugs need 9/16” or 14 mm socket.
     
  11. MikeV

    MikeV Junior Member

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    thanks i tried to tell him
     
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  12. MikeV

    MikeV Junior Member

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    im trying . a lot of fb\ mobile guys talk a good game
     
  13. MikeV

    MikeV Junior Member

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    its hard to because the ones who know more will try to get you to sell them your car so they can flip it. and other need money so they puff
     
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  14. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    As counterfeit spark plugs go, those would be good ones.

    The bad ones frag inside the cylinder, destroying the cylinder walls and pistons.