2013 Prius left on in parking lot issues

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by Perrard, Apr 22, 2019.

  1. Perrard

    Perrard New Member

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    I am an owner of 6 Prius' from 2008 to 2017 (a happy one as well!). A recent issue happened at our business I have never heard of and wanted some feedback.

    Apparently a someone brought their 2013 prius to our work and we actually have staff park vehicles as a convenience since our parking lot is small. The person visited the location for approximately 1 hour. When hey returned to get their car, they stated that the battery was dead and would not do anything. It had to be towed and was apparently taken to a non-Toyota authorized mechanic.

    Mechanic stated the car battery was left on while the engine was off, thereby causing the inverter to overheat and fail also causing the hybrid battery to completely discharge.

    So now they want to hold us liable for a new hybrid battery and inverter.

    My question is this, I have never heard of a Prius doing this before and sounds a bit fishy... If the attendant had left the engine on, then I know the car would continue running as needed to charge up the battery. If the engine was left off but in accessory, wouldn't that then drain the 12v battery and not cause any issue with the inverter?

    Is this possible, could the car have overheated being in battery mode?

    Appreciate all feedback and thoughts....
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    if the car was left on, but in neutral, any accessories left on like a/c could drain the hybrid battery. but i've never heard of that damaging the inverter.

    you should pay to have a toyota dealer look at it.
     
  3. MelonPrius

    MelonPrius Active Member

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    I'm guessing that both the inverter and hybrid battery are still covered under warranty. Definitely bring it to a dealer.
     
  4. mikey_t

    mikey_t Junior Member

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    I accidentally did this with my old Gen 2, twice, I think. I parked at work and came back at the end of the day to see that it was still on. There weren't any issues but I noticed the battery level wasn't where I left it so I figured it did exactly as you described.
     
  5. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

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    I saw a post earlier about this, but from the 2013 prius owner of the car point of view.
     
  6. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sidewalk Supervisor

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    Valet parking Prius has come up here a few times. Clever push-button start/stop button, car that can be "on" and silent, can catch the uninitiated.
     
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  7. kc5dlo

    kc5dlo Member

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    I will chime in on this one. One nite as my wife was heading home and I had just arrived she called to let me know she would be home in a few minutes. Since I wanted to park in the driveway, (she gets the garage), I pulled up in the street an shut the car off to wait for her. A few moments later I hit the start button without the brake pedal pushed to turn on the battery power so I could listen to the radio. All power auto shut off after about 20 minutes. Battery was not dead. It is a fail safe to prevent discharge of the 12 volt battery in case it is left on accidentally
    My car is a 2014 so I suppose there is a possibility a 2013 does not have this feature but it should state in a 2013 owners manual if it does..
     
  8. kc5dlo

    kc5dlo Member

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    page 197 of the 2013 owners manual.

    "■Auto power off function If the vehicle is left in ACCESSORY mode for more than 20 minutes or ON mode (the hybrid system is not operating) for more than an hour with the shift position in P, the “POWER” switch will automatically turn off. However, this function cannot entirely prevent the 12-volt battery from discharging. Do not leave the vehicle with the “POWER” switch in ACCESSORY or ON mode for long periods of time when the hybrid system is not operating."

    I think they need to go fish somewhere else.
     
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  9. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    This is fishy. Your other thoughts about would should happen in cases of operator error, sound correct. Have a real Toyota, Prius-familiar mechanic review it.

    And don't forget the CARB warranty on battery (and inverter??), 10 years / 150k miles.
     
  10. Johnny Cakes

    Johnny Cakes Active Member

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    I understand ACCESSORY mode.
    I understand READY mode.

    What is ON mode?

    It is not the same as READY mode -- as those who go Prius camping will tell you, the car runs all night just fine.
     
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  11. MelonPrius

    MelonPrius Active Member

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    I'm a bit confused...what's the difference between the OP's situation and when someone that car camps all night inside a Prius with the climate control running?
     
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  12. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sidewalk Supervisor

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    Was scratching my head too. Thought the Quick-Start Guide should have some answers, and it did:

    upload_2019-4-24_12-31-42.png

    Excerpt from: 2010 Prius Quick Reference Guide (from Toyota USA)

    As an example, "ON" is the mode you want to use, to set the car in "invalid mode", for a brake fluid replacement. It's similar to fully on, except the engine doesn't run. Could run the 12 volt down if left on for a protracted time, not sure.
     
  13. Slider2732

    Slider2732 Junior Member

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    Must say, I'm not understanding this either.
    I can see it somehow bringing the 12V down to below a starting condition.... but the main traction battery? ... the inverter? ... after just 1hr?

    Cynical scenario says the 2013 has had starting issues and needs a new 12V.
    The owner may fully believe the whole thing has gone up in smoke based on mechanic advice. Something's cooking somewhere, but I don't believe it to be the inverter.

    It really does read like they could also add -
    "The driving style of the attendant also caused the tires to become bald and the brake pads to shatter into 1000 pieces. It is also suspected the engine became clogged with dirt in the EGR system during the event and dirtied the oil to the point of a full service being necessary. Several dings and scratches of the bodywork (caused by the rough handling by the attendant, of course) require the vehicle to have a full repaint to factory showroom standards."
     
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  14. Perrard

    Perrard New Member

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    All of you are awesome, I appreciate the feedback!

    Believe me, I think were being scammed. No Hybrid battery costs $600 and they are claiming the inverter cost $500.

    The company is in Costa Mesa, called Sam Auto Hybrid. After reviewing all the Yelp feedback, looks like they sell refurbed cells.

    BTW- Never heard about the Prius Camping, new one for me....
     
  15. kc5dlo

    kc5dlo Member

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    Assuming the 12 volt battery is the original, it would be somewhere around 6 years old. It would not be unreasonable for me to accept the fact that the 12 volt battery simply failed. If the battery was good to begin with, 1: A hour in accessory mode or the "On" mode should not have killed it. 2: Jumping the battery and letting it recharge should not have a prolonged effect on a battery that has gone flat only once.
     
  16. Slider2732

    Slider2732 Junior Member

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    Some more savvy linkers to the topic will likely point you around to the camping topic better than I ever could. But the general idea is easy enough to imagine and try.

    I believe it goes like this: Switch the car on but don't go anywhere. Put your A/C to whatever temperature is most comfortable for a nights sleep. Move the seats to get a variation on the theme of a bed, put covers over the self. After a few minutes, the car will have run down the main traction batt and the engine will kick in. It'll run for a minute or so, then it'll switch off and you're back to running the A/C on the traction batt again.
    Apparently it works out to be something like $3 in gas for all night, comparing very well to a hotel stay. You don't get a full breakfast, or shower or a microwave in your 'room' mind you, not unless really creative or loose with the terms.

    Hang on, this video is pretty good.

    He's kinda extreme, blacking out his windows and such, but I guess you either go big or go... to a hotel.
     
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