Battery Charge Level - Never 100%

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Technical Discussion' started by DSharpe, Apr 6, 2011.

  1. DSharpe

    DSharpe New Member

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    Has anyone every seen the battery charge level at 100%? The battery charge display seems to never go up to the top bar. I think I may have noticed it once, but I might have been dreaming that.
     
  2. Paradox

    Paradox Prius Enthusiast / Moderator
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    It does occur, but not as often as it happened in my 06'. Nowhere near as often... But that's not to say it is bad or your vehicle is working improperly in any way. This topic has actually been brought up before in past Gen III threads.

    Also, full on the indicator (and no bars too) does not mean the battery is actually fully charged or fully depleted. The reason these packs last so long is because the computer controls them from full charges and discharges. The battery is rarely more than 75% charged or Less than 45% charged. Optimal is around A 60% charge.
     
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  3. JimN

    JimN Let the games begin!

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    You'll see it when you go down a mountain.
     
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  4. Corwyn

    Corwyn Energy Curmudgeon

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    The top bar is 80%. But yes, it is designed to try to remain in the top blue and bottom green bar as much as possible.
     
  5. krelborne

    krelborne New Member

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    What do you consider 100%? I thought I knew what 100% was, but then I hit some seriously hilly terrain with a lot of regen braking, and I found out what 100% really looks like. I was surprised to see the top little extra part of the battery meter that I thought was just decoration filled in. It has only happened once, and I got some unusually good mileage shortly after it happened.
     
  6. sipnfuel

    sipnfuel New Member

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    I can hit the top bar on downhills. It happens a few times a week for me.

    It's also very common to get almost full with just one bar empty.
     
  7. vday

    vday Member

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    :)Every day - going down a 5 mile hill
    After about 3-4 miles it is at the top - 8 bars. :);)
     
  8. car78412

    car78412 Member

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    I own 2 2010 Prius. My wifes Prius drives a II. The battery charge level bars on her Pruis are all full quite often. My Prius IV rarely has all the charge level bars full. The last bar on the top usually does not show a full status. I cannot explain why :confused:
     
  9. PaJa

    PaJa Senior member

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    Nothing is bad. The Prius battery charge policy is to keep some space fror regenerative braking energy storage instead of production of heat when battery at its 100% SOC.
    The full bars will appear during the long downhill ride as thread predescors mentioned.
     
  10. DSharpe

    DSharpe New Member

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    :) Thanks to everyone for their response.

    So it is normal to not see 100% charge. Being the only person who owns a prius in my circle of friends, it is nice to be part of a group like this, to ask questions. Hopefully some day I can return the favour and help someone else out.

    Thanks again.
    Dennis
     
  11. sipnfuel

    sipnfuel New Member

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    Anectdotally & in my experience, whenever you are less than two bars empty, the Prius will find a way to burn that extra 1 or 2 bars so it reverts to two bars empty. When it is more than 2 bars empty, it will take an opportunity to charge the battery when the ICE runs so you are back up to about 2 bars empty.
     
  12. krelborne

    krelborne New Member

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    This is my experience as well. Occasionally, people talk about a "battery debt", and IME that debt starts getting repaid when that third bar disappears. I usually take that as a sign that I've been stealthing too much.
     
  13. Flaninacupboard

    Flaninacupboard Senior Member

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    I see 8 bars almost every day, thanks to my plugin kit.
     
  14. cproaudio

    cproaudio Speedlock Overrider

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    Normal driving would yield 6 bars. On roads with higher speed limit 45-55mph and frequent stop lights 7 bars is the norm. As you've mentioned 7 or 8 bars = unusually high mileage. Some of us with plugin kits, are constantly driving with 7 bars and the end result is constant 80+mpg as long as there's power in the battery pack.
     
  15. robby3

    robby3 Member

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    Every day :) The road goes downhill to my house and is long enough so the batt gets fully charged. Unfortunately I have to drive this steep hil up again in the morning with a cold ICE :(
     
  16. pakitt

    pakitt Senior Member

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    My battery is practically always between 2 and 5 bars full in my city-commute drive. I have seen it completely full (and then have the ICE running pumping air to brake) only a handful of times, driving down hill and it looked like the last bar would take *forever* to come up and after that, again *forever* for the ICE to start running pumping air.
    I think the SOC (state of charge) of the battery depends greatly on how one drives, which mode is used, and obviously road type.
    It is also interesting to note that although a full battery (8 bars) is 80% charge, 2 bars are 40% (or less - I don't remember now) and not 0 or 1 bar. I don't know why Toyota did this - it is likely for psychological reasons - i.e. seeing a completely empty battery gives the creeps, even if the battery is actually at 40% charge (the ECU will never let it go below that - or above 80%, for that matter).
     
  17. sipnfuel

    sipnfuel New Member

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    Robby, you should let the car warm up for 50 seconds until the engine quits, before moving. I've done this before and it works.
     
  18. robby3

    robby3 Member

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    Thanks, I'm gonna try this. When I start the car the batt is fully topped and the ICE kicks in. I then drive out the house through the small village on batt (no ICE to the wheels). Then it's about 400m little downhill outside where I have to accelerate with the help of the ICE until a turn where the uphill road starts. This is a 5km climb with two short flats but during this time I'm getting 2-3 full bars on the ecometer :( The ICE runs on a high rpm if I keep the allowed speed and the batt is discharged down to 3-4 bars. Also the temps are currently again around 2°C in the morning so it's hard for the engine and the battery for sure as the car sits outside. I thought that the battery helps more in the morning as it is fully charged but it's efficiency in the cold seems not to be great.

    I will record a track with my Android next week and also try to warm up the engine 50sec before I move.
     
  19. pakitt

    pakitt Senior Member

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    I use as a benchmark the 3km distance (the engine is always warmed up by then). Depending on the battery charge, morning temperature (here also now at 2-4C - where is spring!!!?! :( ) and alignment of planets, with the road I am taking every day I am happy if I get 7L/100km average. 8 or more, it is a bad day (cold, battery fully depleted on turn on). If it is less than 7 - boy, the planets have aligned - it is a good day... ;)
    It also depends on how many cars and how many unwanted stops I have to put up with, before I reach the 3km mark....
     
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