Battery replacement, brand new battery pack from dealership questions

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Ashley H, Dec 3, 2014.

  1. Ashley H

    Ashley H New Member

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    Our Gen 2 Prius needs a new battery. We have attempted to save a little bit of money and purchase a refurbished one, after we installed it we kept getting error messages and then the car stopped working again. After testing the battery cells we found the cells were not properly balanced, the company sent us a second battery, this one has a high voltage leak somewhere. After a month of issues and complications (and not having a vehicle to drive) we've decided to purchase a brand new battery from Toyota. We've gotten pretty good at installing the battery ourselves, its a very very simple process, we followed a video on YouTube, so we figured that will save us a lot of money. We are being quoted 2727.00 for the battery WITH tax. However, we have called 5 different dealerships asking them all the same questions and we continue to get different answers at each one.

    Does installing the battery yourself void the manufacture warrenty? and how long is the warrenty? and is this the statdard for all dealerships?
    It's funny because EVERY dealership I called said what they were telling us was the same for EVERY dealership, which is weird because we got so many different answers.

    The different answers I am getting for warrenty length are -
    12 months 1200 miles
    12 months unlimited miles
    and no warrenty

    As far as the voiding the warrenty if you install it yourself -
    two dealerships said they had no idea and told us to call coorporate (dead end, the guy didn't have any idea what he was talking about but he told us each dealership creates their own rules with this.)
    One said if you do it yourself you will not recieve a warrenty AT ALL
    Two others said you WILL recieve a warrenty because the warrenty comes with the part.

    Our problem, we live basically in the middle of no where, and all of the close dealerships to us said we will get no warrenty if we install the batter ourselves and want to charge us $4000 for the battery and install (thats with a "military discount") <- I hardly believe that, my husband and I have already gutted the car completely and they said it would be MORE work since we did that. yeah I laughed my butt off when I heard that just to kind of explain what we are dealing with here. And its a good 6 hour drive one way to get to the nearest dealership that said we do get a warrenty with installing it ourselves.

    Does ANYONE have any experience with this? Or happen to know if every dealership has the same warrenty and if they're just trying to scam us? I don't want to have to drive 6 hours but I will to save $1300!!
     
  2. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    Thanks for sharing your experiences; especially the variations in responses, toyota should wake up and pay attention on this subject. Can't really add anything, but will follow this thread, interesting.
     
  3. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    how many miles on her?
     
  4. Ashley H

    Ashley H New Member

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    197,000 from what I've read that's low for a battery life but we are not the original owners. I've read many things that have said the way you drive the car has a lot to do with how long the battery will last.
     
  5. jdenenberg

    jdenenberg EE Professor

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    Ashley,
    Installing the Toyota battery has an extra step. You will need to remove the ECU from your existing battery and install it inside the new battery. This is not too difficult, but requires opening up each battery and be careful around the high voltages.

    JeffD
     
  6. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    One other issue to remember: you have to return the old battery to the place you bought the new one, or pay ~ $1350 'core charge.'
    I think in general that a new OEM battery is the way to go, but ND really is off the beaten path for Prius. Perhaps the way to handle this is to drive to say Minneapolis in another car with the old battery (sans electronics) in order to buy the new battery and hand in the old core at the same time.

    Here is a list of vendors. If you go this DIY route and need a tutorial how to swap out the electronics safely, PM me and I'll track it down for you. I have a link saved --- somewhere ;)

    Good Luck!
     
    #6 SageBrush, Dec 3, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2014
  7. GregP507

    GregP507 Senior Member

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    A "battery nightmare" is the last thing any of us need, and it's also the last thing Toyota needs, as it could damage their brand irreparably. Repair (vs. replacement with a new battery) contains an element of risk, especially when you live "in the middle of nowhere." It also demands a level of skill, which may not be available everywhere. I believe that if each call has been tested and certified, and the battery has been properly balanced, it should work reliably for years. I wish you luck in finding that.
     
  8. Ashley H

    Ashley H New Member

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    The company we bought the refurbished batteries from has or original battery and already disassembled it so they are sending someone else’s bad battery for us to turn in for the core deposit. Do you think this could cause an issue having to use that ECU?

    I'm aware of the high voltage we have a lot of experience with it. Also is it a simple plug in play computer slot, like installing the battery itself? Or would I have to do any program or synchronizing? If anybody has any experience with this aspect of installing the battery any advice would be appreciated.
     
    #8 Ashley H, Dec 3, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2014
  9. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    i would guess 200,000 miles is average, maybe a little above.
     
  10. ericbecky

    ericbecky Hybrid Battery Hero

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    Ashley.
    Sorry to hear of your battery saga!
    I deal with hybrid batteries from Toyota nearly every day.
    Warranty is 12 months, 12,000 miles.
    I'd be happy to be a resource for you. Feel free to call me.

    No need to publicly name the refurbished battery company, but I would be interested privately to be able to help protect my own future customers.

    Since the refurbish company knows you are turning it in as a core, I bet they load it up with all their bad reject cells. That will be suspicious, but you'll probably be fine. It's make me a bit nervous, though.
     
  11. JC91006

    JC91006 Senior Member

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    I would like to know who the rebuilder is, just to protect myself later
     
  12. Ashley H

    Ashley H New Member

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    The company is Falcon Hybrid. Not to mention they are trying to keep 375 dollars from us for "all the shipping costs we've caused them." I would recommend staying far, far away from that company.
    I don't mind putting them on blast to help other people hopefully not suffer the same issues we had.
     
  13. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    i would use that as leverage before actually doing it.
     
  14. Ashley H

    Ashley H New Member

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    Keep their battery with the high voltage leak as leverage? I guess I'm not understanding what you mean.
     
  15. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    no, if they won't reimburse you for freight, threaten them with blast. it's not your fault they keep shipping you faulty batteries.
     
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  16. Ashley H

    Ashley H New Member

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    Oh, I understand, yeah we plan on it. Right now I'm trying to keep it as civil as possible, I'm in an e-mail war with the owner, I can never get ahold of him via telephone, but I'll definitely do what is necessary to be reimbursed.
     
  17. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    good looking website though.:sneaky:
     
  18. jdenenberg

    jdenenberg EE Professor

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    Ashley,
    The ECUs are pretty reliable and if it turns out that you need one, they are generally available (ask ericbecky as my spare one was used to debug another PCers HV battery).

    JeffD
     
  19. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    Yep.

    Falcon used to go by another name, that had a fair amount of unhappy customers piled up on internet sites. What more needs to be said ? Non-local battery refurbs is a bad gamble.
     
  20. Ashley H

    Ashley H New Member

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    Yup they used to go by priusrebuilders
     
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