2012 Prius C2 No dash lights and doesn't start. Any help would be greatly appreciated

Discussion in 'Prius c Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Brooklyn_Boy, Oct 11, 2020.

  1. Brooklyn_Boy

    Brooklyn_Boy New Member

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    Hello all.
    I am hoping that members of the forum will be able to help me with my 2012 Prius C. I purchased it new and it currently has about 59k miles on it. About 2-3 weeks ago my son was driving the car and got the engine light on the dashboard with the accompanying message to "pull over" and check the hybrid engine. He was a block from the house and after a few days he and I checked the car. It wouldn't start but the error message appeared on the dash. Following that we chose to check the two fuse boxes under the hood and then the fuse box under the driver's side. There were no obvious shorted fuses but after checking the inside fuses we tried to start the car again but not only did it not start but there are no longer any lights that appear on the dashboard.
    I will add that about in February of this year we replaced the 12v battery at the dealership but did not experience any problems until receiving the error message about checking the engine. There is power to other electronic in the car, i.e. the radio, a/c, and interior lights. The key fob opens and locks the doors.
    From the things that I've been able to find the common possibilities are the fuses, key fob, the 12v battery and the hybrid battery. My plan of action at this time is to change the fuses, the battery in the key fob, check the battery,clean the hybrid battery filter, to start. Following that, well, I am not sure.
    It appears that my issues are not unique and I am hoping that members of the forum can suggest some relatively easy fix to at least get dashboard lights back on.
    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    welcome!
    sounds like a good plan of action.

    maybe you disturbed a fuse while checking them, but idk.

    definitely check the 12v and connections, you can get a free load test at an auto parts store.

    if all else fails, you'll need to read the trouble codes with toyota tech stream software
     
  3. Brooklyn_Boy

    Brooklyn_Boy New Member

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    Thanks Bisco.
    Update: I have slowly begun changing fuses and checking whatever I can.
    I do want to share that today I found that Bussman low profile mini fuses fit perfectly within the passenger compartment fuse box for the 2012 Prius C 2.
    I am hoping that I get to a point where I can get lights on the dashboard and at least start the vehicle - right now I'd have to be towed.
    I'll periodically give an update in case anything I do currently may help others in the future.
     
  4. Brooklyn_Boy

    Brooklyn_Boy New Member

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    I continue to read various posts from members and one referenced CARB standards. My understanding is that Prius C built to CARB standards have a warranty of 10 years/150k. I purchased the vehicle in New Jersey (CARB state) but now it is registered in Florida (non-CARB state). Can anyone tell me whether the hv battery is covered under CARB standards of Federal standards (8 years/100k)?
     

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  5. Brooklyn_Boy

    Brooklyn_Boy New Member

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    At this point I have changed all the fuses inside the driver's compartment and have attempted to jump start the battery. Nothing. I removed the battery to check the voltage with a multimeter and it measures 10.13 V. I realize that this is low but I think I should have been able to jump start the engine if the problem was only the 12v battery, not even clicking of the starter (if it is similar to other vehicles). Any ideas?
    My next step is to check all of the fuses, etc. under the hood.
     
  6. Brooklyn_Boy

    Brooklyn_Boy New Member

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    Update.
    I have checked all the fuses with a multimeter and all check out fine.
    I charged the 12v battery and attempted to start the vehicle. Still no luck. I have discovered through my readings that the Prius C does not have a starter or alternator in the same way a non-hybrid does so it explains why I haven't heard any "clicking" when attempting to start the car.
    I do have dashboard lights, headlights, a/c, radio and emergency blinkers, as well as the "car" on the dashboard so I was either mistaken about my earlier thinking about no lights, or when I changed the fuses in the inside of the driver's compartment I did something to initiate the lights on the dashboard.
    The buttons on the steering wheel appear to be functioning appropriately. I checked the hv battery fan mesh and it is clean.
    The emergency blinkers work but the turning signals on the car do not. I don't know if the car has to be running for the signals to work but at this point they do not. I don't know if that is a clue to anything but it will be my next source of reading. In addition I will try to figure out my options with regard to the hv battery.
     
  7. Brooklyn_Boy

    Brooklyn_Boy New Member

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    My periodic update.
    Not much has changed since my last entry/sharing.
    I am now trying to price out my options in anticipation of replacing my hv battery. What I have found is that for companies that will come to your residence and replace the battery with varying warranty(ies) is that each of the ones I have discovered do not do any diagnostic testing. One requires a printout from Toyota of the diagnostic code(s) and a second requires either the diagnostic evaluation from Toyota or your signature of a waiver stating that you request the company to sell you the reconditioned battery with the understanding that if the company installs the replacement and the car doesn't start that the company is not liable and that you made the decision to have the reconditioned battery installed w/o running diagnostics.
    My next step is to have the car towed to Toyota for diagnostic eval either this week or after thanksgiving.
     
  8. dubit

    dubit Senior Member

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    Do not buy one of those refurbished batteries. They are made from old battery packs and while it may work for awhile, it won't work for long. Go the genuine Toyota battery route. You can find hundreds of threads on this site alone about the problems with those rebuilt packs.

    btw, have you inquired about the warranty? Don't mention that you've torn the car apart looking/checking for things. Any tampering can void a manufacturers warranty as you probably know already.
     
  9. Brooklyn_Boy

    Brooklyn_Boy New Member

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    Thanks for your input Dubit.
    It's very timely in that we just got back from the Toyota dealership.
    According to the technician's notes there was noted to be corrosion in the smart unit and in the harness for the hv battery, and the recommended action is to replace the smart unit and hv battery. The estimate is a little over $3700.
    Btw we asked about the warranty on a new hv battery and was told that it was 1 year.
    We haven't made any decision(s) yet but I figured that I'd post the latest.
    And again, thanks for your input Dubit.
     
  10. Tyler S

    Tyler S Junior Member

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    Hey sorry to hear about your HV battery issue. While my Prius C battery has been solid so far, I had to replace the HV battery on my Yukon and it was such a pain.

    We couldn't source a GM hybrid battery anywhere in North America through the dealership, so we ended up going with a company selling refurbished batteries. Our dealership quoted $6300 for our hybrid battery if/when they could be sourced. We ended up going with a company called Green Bean battery due to their offer of a lifetime warranty. We have had ours for a year now and haven't had any issues with it so far.

    Obviously Prius batteries are actually available so if the price difference isn't too far off then I assume it's always best going with the manufacturer replacement IMHO.

    In any event, just sharing my experience and good luck!
     
  11. dig4dirt

    dig4dirt MoonGlow

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    Prius C HV battery is warrantied 8yr/100k, does not matter on any other carb or state or anything else.

    I believe @dubit was referring about that current (HV battery in the car) warranty inquiry.

    It is not a dead set rule, but others have been successful in getting full or partial warranty replacement
    for the HV batt failure when they were just out of warranty, i.e. few months or few k miles.
    Def worth a try since your mileage is way under and depending on when purchased new, could be just out or still valid.

    research all available options. I would not rule out a refurb dep on financial situation,
    and also on your plans for the C.

    But a diagnosis will be beneficial in your circumstance at a dealer, (which i see you have done already)
    unless you want to go the DIY/techstream route
    (note: if the dealer says no soup on warranty, then a call to toy corporate will be required to
    explain your situation and mileage and such)

    good luck!
    we are here to help if u need it
     
    Raytheeagle likes this.
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