2012 Prius C give up on me after two week of purchase

Discussion in 'Prius c Technical Discussion' started by Bazzle, Mar 4, 2021.

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  1. Bazzle

    Bazzle New Member

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    Hi. I'm new to this prius group. my wife and myself has always a big fan of hybrid cars. we final found a prius c that fits in our price range. but after two weeks of driving it. my car died at the home depot parking lot. it was running fine but when we were getting ready to pull in to one of the parking spot. all the lights came on, hybrid system warning was on and the engine was shaking and left us there.
    I had the car towed to toyota for a check. they told me the hybrid battery need to be replaced and quoted me 4200 for the releasement with the fault code P0A80. Im not a hybrid engineer or something. but i do have some kind of mechanical knowledge. would a bad hybrid battery stops the engine form running? and from y research, if the hybrid battery warning popped up. the car should still be drivable right?
     
  2. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    YES and NO.
    Or more accurately the answer to both is: maybe.

    Given where you are located, you likely don't have a lot of options either.
     
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  3. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    Depending on the severity of the failure, a bad hybrid battery can prevent the engine from starting. It generally won't cause a running engine to quit, but it may not be able to get going again. Since a Prius wants to start and stop its engine frequently, this can mean it's done as transportation.

    I hate to say it, but it sounds like the previous owner used up all the good miles and sold you his problems.

    You can almost certainly get the battery replaced for less than $4,200.

    The average Prius can be driven for a while after the computer flags the P0A80, but the behavior is all over the place- some can barely make it home, others can be limped around for weeks.
     
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  4. topshot

    topshot Member

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    Given your description (it was on when it happened), age (2012) and location (hot year round), I would agree the traction battery is likely toast. It wouldn't hurt to verify the 12V under the rear seat is still good, but it usually throws multiple odd codes instead of only a battery one. Also check that the vent under the driver's side rear seat is clear and you can hear the fan running. Not sure what your options are of getting a reman traction battery in Guam. Shipping one from a US supplier would be steep. You might check junk yards for newer ones.
     
  5. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    The dealer should have been able to give you the sub codes that specify which battery block or blocks went bad. But even then, living on an island, you have lots of salt in the air and that could easily have corroded the sensor wires in the battery. It may be that it needs a wiring harness. Or it could be the traction battery itself. Once you know the sub codes, you'll have a better idea where to look.

    $4200 seems like an insane price to us here on the mainland, but not so surprising when you live on an island. (I lived on an island for nine years, so I know what it's like.)
     
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  6. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    When you live on Guam ??
     
  7. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    I'd get a second opinion on the battery pack.
    It's 'warm' in Guam 12 months a year but it rarely gets 'hot'....depending on what you call 'warm' and 'hot.'
    High 80s and low 70's happen almost everywhere else in the US.........just not 12 months a year in most places.

    As noted above It's ALWAYS moist and salty there....so you may indeed have a battery pack problem but it might not be a "cell" problem....but(!!) depending on when the in-service date is it might not be a "you" problem but rather it might be a "them" problem!

    Bad news....Guam isn't a CARB state.
    Actually? You're not a state at all, but don't get me and @fuzzy1 started on THAT. ;)
    The good news is that your car should still be covered by the standard US warranty.....and thus SHOULD be covered by an 8year,100,000 mile warranty again....depending on your vehicle's in-service date.
    I'm just guessing here, but I doubt you're over 100,000 miles if all of the miles were driven in Guam. ;)

    Either way?
    2021-2012 is gonna be CLOSE
    Toyota may give you a discount or even cover it outright if you're over the warranty by just a few months under a Goodwill warranty claim.
    Have your dealer reach out to them.
    The answer is always NO if you do not ask.

    Given the choice between a $4200 OEM battery and a DIY replacement, I'd start looking into the DIY option if Yota doesn't work with you on the price of the pack. You may be in Guam....but it's not like you don't have adequate mail service.
    OK.....well since you have the USPS, I guess you're just as disadvantaged as we are on this side of the IDL....but there are STILL more reasonable options than letting Toyota shank you out of $4200 for a battery pack!!!

    Good Luck!
    Let us know how it goes!
     
    #7 ETC(SS), Mar 4, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
  8. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    do you get a lot of humidity? might just be corrosion as jerry said
     
  9. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    Guam is an island and not a very big one. I haven't been there, but every island I've been to is humid. Not just humid; salty humid. My vehicles were in the body shop at least yearly to try to stay ahead of the rust.
     
  10. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    we do see a number of c batteries go bad at 8 years, so who knows?
     
  11. Bazzle

    Bazzle New Member

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    First of all, I really appreciated all your replies and helps. I have called the dealer which they kindly provided me a discount price of $3000 for the part and $3500 for the full installation. but it's still a lot of money. that's half of the money I paid for this car.

    I asked them for the detailed subcode. Their reply was they are not authorized to open the battery on their level so they are not able to provide me the subcode which I don't think that true.

    I did try to ask for the warranty, sadly this car was sold in mid-2012 which makes the car close to 1yrs over the warranty said. The original request was declined. but I will try to ask again to a higher level.

    I did found a couple places on the mainland that selling reconditioned battery but none of them would be able to ship them over to Guam. I'm trying to get in contact with a couple DIY battery suppliers. and hopefully, someone would be able to ship to me.

    currently live in talofofo area.

    According to the dealer record. The hybrid battery has been replaced in 2015 which makes it 5-6 yrs old.
     
  12. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    The sub-code gets out of the car the same way the main P0A80 code does: a technician plugs in the diagnostic computer. It's extra steps to record the results, but it's pretty much guaranteed that the data in question has already been read from your car, they just didn't preserve it to present it to you, so they have to do it all over again to answer your question.

    Knowing that the current hybrid battery is only 5-6 years old changes things. If it was a genuine Toyota battery I really would have expected it to last longer, even in a warm climate. Genuine Toyota replacements usually have their own warranties, but it would have been short- maybe 1 year.

    Check the battery cooling fan, make sure this newer battery wasn't sent to an early grave by chronic overheat.
     
    #12 Leadfoot J. McCoalroller, Mar 5, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2021
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  13. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    I'm sorry that the Toyota dealership(s?) on Guam operate to the same standards as they do here on the mainland.
    Are you able to install the battery yourself?
    Please watch this before you decide and have some of the Priussy owners chime in.

    $3000 seems a bit much for the install price!
    ADDED to this you might be able to identify something under the rear seat that might have contributed to the seemingly early demise of this battery.
    BTW....Yota just upped their battery warranty to 10 years.
    Different battery chemistry maybe, but you might be able to jostle them with that little factoid.

    ALSO the if the battery has already been replaced once before, there is obviously something esle going on with this car....or the dealership who installed the last battery didn't do such a....um....."hot" job.....or they installed a used pack from a junkyard instead of a new OEM pack.

    SOMETHING is amiss here.
    Priussys are SUPPOSED to be the MOST reliable Toyota......even on Guam.

    DO NOT give up on an aftermarket solution.
    It's not like Guam is on the other side of the Earth.
    Waitaminute....maybe it IS....but if you know somebody here on this side of the IDL, maybe they can take delivery of an aftermarket battery and forward it to you.
    As YOU already know.....Guam is serviced by the same third-world, corrupt, inefficient postal system that we have to put up with here....the USPS!
    I haven't received mail in Guam in well over 30 years but the last time I checked shipping is the same domestic rate that you would pay for a package delivered to Mullberry Street, NYC!

    Check some more before you hand over $3000 to people who may be out-and-out thieves.


     
    #13 ETC(SS), Mar 5, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2021
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  14. topshot

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    You are correct, they are full of it. The subcodes are read via the Techstream software they use for all modern Toyotas. They don't have to touch the battery at all. I would also have them give you the voltages of ALL cells, which is also available from the same software. That will give a decent indication of the health of the battery. If it really is bad then at least 1 cell will be noticeable lower than the average.

    Interesting that it isn't the original battery. You can verify service records by going to Owners section of Toyota.com and entering VIN. I guess you do get lemons every now and then, but maybe corrosion from salt water is a major issue there. I know both Prius I bought from Chicago area had some corrosion on connectors in the engine compartment from winter road salt. Since you say you are handy, I'd read on how to safely disassemble the battery and check all connectors everywhere in the circuit. Corrosion on even a single cell might cause enough voltage drop that it throws a code. It may turn out that cleaning every few years may be a maintenance item needed for your unique environment???
     
  15. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    I wondered about that too.
    It was $3500 .....but not sure if he meant an extra 3500 in labor OR that 3500 was the total......and 500 was the labor.
    An additional 3500 just for labor is outrageous.
     
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  16. Bazzle

    Bazzle New Member

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    So, here's the update after a month.

    While my car is parking at the dealership. I requested another goodwill warranty claim. which I found out that they didn't even put in for me the first time I requested. waited about 2 weeks for Toyota to respond with the decline of my request. (2012 June, 83000 Miles). (not too happy about it, also kind already known)

    now my options:
    1. the original owner found a junkyard which has 2 batteries for sell ($1500 each + 1 month warrenty)
    2. Toyota dealership 3000(battery) + 500(installation)
    3. I contacted a China supplier that sale High capacity NI-MH replacement ($770 for 10 cell kit + $200 UPS shipping )
    4. only replace the bad cell if possible but afraid that other cells might go bad in a year.



    Went to the dealership again. Now they are saying they could do a check on every single cell. but since they are busy and only have one hybrid tech. they cant do it at this time.

    Thank you for the video. this really gonna help in the future. and Guam considers as overseas. USPS is not shipping batteries with high capacity. and 3000 is the cost of the new battery and 500 is the installation. so 3500 in total.
     
  17. Bazzle

    Bazzle New Member

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    So this type.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  18. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    That third option is mighty intriguing... I think I'd do that one if I were in your shoes.

    I would not even try a junkyard battery older than 2017, especially at those prices.
     
  19. royrose

    royrose Senior Member

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    Trouble is @2k1Toaster has said that many Chinese batteries are lower capacity than advertised. It would be good if he could give an opinion.
     
  20. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    Compare that to the alternatives- junkyard batteries are not going to provide full power either. The new unit from Toyota can be trusted to, but it's nearly 4x the price by OP's quotes. I think I could tolerate at least a little bit of nameplate cheating given those savings.

    You're right though, it'll be great to hear from an expert.
     
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