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2010 ran out of gas won't shift into gear

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by Cherry Killingsworth, Nov 7, 2019.

  1. Cherry Killingsworth

    Cherry Killingsworth Junior Member

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    Hi everyone,

    We own a used 2010 Prius and should have stopped for gas before going to the store. Needless to say, we ran out of gas in sight of the gas station. We put 5 gallons in and it is registering on the gauge. The car starts but will not shift into gear and has all of the lights on on the dash. We have disconnected the 12v battrery for 2 minutes and it still will not shift into gear. Does anyone know what could be going on?
     
  2. tankyuong

    tankyuong Senior Member

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    Your battery is completely drained and needs to be charged at dealership
     
    mikey_t and Pluggo like this.
  3. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    hybrid battery
     
  4. RMB

    RMB Senior Member

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  5. iskoos

    iskoos Active Member

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    When you say "Car starts", do you mean the gas engine starts, OR you mean car just powers up but the gas engine doesn't start?

    You must have driven the car for a long time after the last pip (on the fuel indicator) starts blinking and you read "0 miles to go" on the dash. Because even at that stage, you have about 2 gallons of gas left in the tank. Prius fuel gauge is far from being accurate.

    I saw people reporting over 100 miles after the computer says "0 miles to go"
    So far the most I pushed my Prius was about 30 miles after the computer read "0 miles to go" and I barely pumped 10 gallons in to 11.9-gallon tank. And I only did that because I know I am not running out of gas based on what I pump back in.

    How long did you drive the car on battery to get to the gas station?
     
  6. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    The car knows what's wrong. It will be glad to tell you if you connect a Prius-capable code reader to the OBDII port and ask it. Otherwise, it's just a guessing game with really bad odds.

    Years ago, crossing the Bonneville Salt Flats on I-80, I saw two specks ahead in the distance. So I checked my odometer. The first speck was 7 miles away and it turned out to be a road sign that said, "Rest Area 7 Miles." The rest area was the second speck.

    So, "within sight" can mean anything from across the street to 14 miles away. How far did you actually go after the engine starved and quit?

    But again, you're unlikely to find the answer without reading the trouble codes.
     
    dig4dirt likes this.
  7. iskoos

    iskoos Active Member

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    I really would like to hear from OP regarding my question "How long did he drive on battery after running out gas?"

    And what he means by car starting up. Is the engine(ICE) running?

    The only time I heard that Prius refuses to start the gas engine (or cannot start) was when the HV battery depleted too much. This can only happen when the car really runs out of gas and it is running on battery power.
    Since the starter motor (MG1) runs off HV battery, if it is too low, it won't be able to start the gas engine. Jumping the car won't do any good.

    But if the gas engine starts up, then I do not see any reason why Prius refuses to shift into the gear.

    To the OP, please update us...
     
    2012 Prius v wagon 3 likes this.
  8. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Patron saint of newly poured sidewalks

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    IIRC third gen won't let you run the battery dangerously low; it'll shut down before that happens?
     
    Georgina Rudkus likes this.
  9. iskoos

    iskoos Active Member

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    Well, I did run mine pretty low and it didn't shut off. I did this while the vehicle in Neutral and the A/C was running. I was monitoring the block voltages through Torque Pro app to see if I have any block that was losing voltage quicker than the others.
    When it wanted to start the ICE (I was at 2 bars), computer gave warning on the screen saying "Put the car into P". It didn't try to start the engine because it was smart enough to know that starting it would do no good in Neutral mode. Instead it kept showing warning on MFD. I ran the voltages down below 14volts on each block and then stopped the test. After putting the can back into "P", it started the ICE immediately but it took a bit longer for the engine to crank and start due to very low voltage. And battery monitor showed only 1 bar for about 3 minutes while the car charging the HV pack.

    Are you sure, the car would have shut off if I had continued to drain the HV pack? I didn't hear this anywhere. And this is the reason why people that ran out of gas able to drain the HV to the point where it wouldn't start anymore.

    Kind of like what I think happened to OP and the reason why I keep asking to find out. But he doesn't respond.
     
    Mendel Leisk likes this.
  10. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Patron saint of newly poured sidewalks

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    Not really sure. I've read here that there was was some sort of turtle mode on second gen, that would run the battery right down. And with third gen they curtailed that, protected against that outcome. But yeah, just hearsay.
     
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