Cold Weather, Battery Life, Vehicle Life

Discussion in 'Prius v Main Forum' started by lelandbenploni, Jul 18, 2016.

  1. lelandbenploni

    lelandbenploni New Member

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    I live in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, where it is below zero fahrenheit most of the winter. I am interested in buying a Prius V and would like to see if anyone has experience with Prius batteries in similar conditions. I am also interested in people's overall experience with battery life and with the overall vehicle life. My wife and I have had Honda Civics last for 16 years. Has anybody had a Prius last over ten years?
     
  2. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    Welcome to the site.

    General rule of thumb: batteries live longer in colder climes but have less energy.

    I have a 10 year old Prius with only 45k miles. It will eventually need a new HV battery and when that's replaced I expect the car to easily last another 6 years.
     
  3. lelandbenploni

    lelandbenploni New Member

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    Thanks for your response. Can you clarify what you mean by "less energy"? I'd also be interested to know where you learned about the battery lasting longer in the cold.

    thanks again
     
  4. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    #4 JimboPalmer, Jul 18, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2016
  5. rdgrimes

    rdgrimes Senior Member

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    The hybrid system traction battery won't care how cold it is. The 12v battery doesn't do any actual cranking and so isn't really affected by frigid temps either. Some folks in cold climates use one of the "pre-heating" systems to heat both the block and interior in sub-zero temps, so like any car it can be done. Toyota in Canada offers a block heater that's pretty wimpy (400W) but will give you some heat right away on cold starts.

    Just be aware that in frigid temps you won't get very good MPG - also just like any car. If you REALLY want good cold weather performance, keep the car in a garage, preferably a warm one.
     
  6. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    welcome to priuschat! we have many canadian and northern u.s. owners, and no reports of premature failure.
    many recommend a block heater in cold climates, for shorter warm up times and better mpg's.

    we don't have statistics, but the first gen prius from 2001-3 are still running, though many are done or need a lot of maintenance. the second gen, from 2004 - 2009 are doing very well, but some of the earlier years have had the hybrid battery replaced.
    as mentioned above, hot climates tend to exacerbate battery failure.
    the third gen, from 2010-2015 are doing well and there have been few reports of battery failure.

    the prius seems to be rock solid in many cases for about 10 years or so. if you plan to keep one longer, plan on more and more expensive repairs. i believe the hybrid warranty in canada is 8 years/100,000 miles.
    all the best!(y)
     
  7. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    Hey there,

    Perhaps my threads would be of use? My car was parked indoors at home but outdoors at work (plugged in of course). My car is almost 7 years old on original 12V, brake pads. 3rd set of tires (I had a set of winters and the original to start with). Our 2005 Prius lasted 11.5 years. If you're considering the Prius v, may I suggest getting the Technology package with the LED headlights. The reason why are in the following link:
    New IIHS ratings show most headlights are lacking
    T
    he Prius v with the LED headlights was the only vehicle to score "Good" in the Midsize Vehicle category.

    My threads:
    Extreme Cold Weather Performance | PriusChat


    And excerpts from my other thread:
    Cold Weather Performance | PriusChat



    At the typical -20°C, it was fine. The heater and the engine ran as you expect of a modern car. I ran Nokian R winter tires and they were fantastic. Climbing up/down the mountain roads in Banff, compact snow, ice, it performed admirably. Obviously the stock eco tires were meant for much milder weather.
     
  8. EZW1

    EZW1 Active Member

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    Not sure if anyone above answered you question so I will try. This is a bit of a crude analogy, but in cold temps everything slows down (water, oil, most all fluids). It is for this reason that a battery will lose some of its energy capacity when it gets cold. How much it looses depends on the type of battery and the temperature. I'm sure you've experienced how the old lead-acid batteries would barely turn over the engine in temps below zero. This is due to the oil being thick, the engine getting tighter (metal clearances will shrink) and the battery will deliver significantly less energy (e.g. 75 cranking amps versus 125 amps at 80F for example).

    But, on the good side, cold temps do not shorten a battery's life like hot temps do (the main reason why the traction battery has an air blower attached that will turn on if the battery gets too hot. Toyota's way of protecting and therefore extending the battery life for you). The 12V battery is located inside the cabin at the rear of the car right next to the exit air vent. Because of its placement, it is kept at cabin air temps like the traction battery, and therefore not subjected to high temps - also extending its life. Here in Phoenix, our hot summers are vary hard on an auto's battery because it is typically placed in the engine compartment for convenience, and consequently gets very hot during normal use. Batteries here will last 2, maybe 3 years.

    But, you don't have to worry about the Prius line. All the batteries are placed inside the cabin. Yea!

    Hopes this helps.
     
  9. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    That's a good point, EZW1. Also, a Prius is easier to start in the cold because the 12V battery doesn't need to crank the engine. It just needs to boot the computer :D.
     
  10. Air_Boss

    Air_Boss Senior Member

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    Battery location somewhat protects from ambient temperatures while running (subject to cabin temperature), but not protected from ambient temperatures when off, parked, and 'soaking' in cold or heat, such as overnight.
     
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