Did my bladder pop? 12.4 gallons filled.

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by sorka, Jul 10, 2009.

  1. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    Strange day in the Prius. Went to a gas station I don't normally go to because I was about to run out of gas. It has newer pumps yet it put an indicated 12.4 gallons in the tank. My first suspicion was that the pump was off. I'm paranoid like that.

    I didn't top off. Never do. But as it neared the end of the fill, I heard for the first time that sound you here when you're filling up an enclosed space and as it reaches full, the acoustic sound changes pitch going from low to high. I've never heard that before when filling up the Prius. I actually stopped the pump myself rather than waiting for the auto shutoff because I was afraid it would overflow based on the acoustic sound.

    Then about 10 minutes later while I was driving on the freeway, I thought I smelled gasoline. I closed the vent (recirc) and the smell went away. Then a few minutes later I heard a loud pop. I thought it was a tire. I pulled over, got out and looked. Tires OK. Got back on the freeway. It then occured to me that maybe it was the bladder?

    Also, may be related, but last week we ran out of gas while on the freeway with two pips left. We drove about 2 miles to the nearest gas station on the battery alone. Fortunately we were doing 75 MPH with 6 bars on the battery so when the engine died, I coasted to the next exit and got within 1/2 mile of the station before dipping into the battery. We had 3 bars left by the time I pulled in.
     
  2. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

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    the bladder isn't a thin piece of plastic or anything. for that matter, it really doesn't stretch all that much either.

    I seriously doubt you popped it.... but you may have filled up your other safety systems with fuel.. such as the charcoal canister that's supposed to catch vapor only. and the recirculation tubes that are supposed to transport vapors.

    others will chime in. i'm thinking there was some sort of overflow to the system. if the canisters and such fills up, it can bleed itself off. maybe that was part of the vapor recovery system i'm thinking about.

    be prepared to see a lot of diagrams :)
     
  3. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    And if the charcoal canister is in the front like other vehicles, it would account for the fumes I was smelling if it filled up and become saturated.
     
  4. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

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    it's not.. it has transport lines that go up to the throttle intake.. or.. something like that... most of those systems are under the car/in the rear. there are still several ways for fumes to reach the cabin though. shrug...

    i've heard a pop like that before.. i had no clue what it was.. it thought it was a tire but it wasn't... shrug?
     
  5. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    Could have just been something on the freeway that the tire hit. Most likely am just oversensitive to sounds given the previous 15 minutes of strangeness.
     
  6. Manksgloob

    Manksgloob Member

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    I believe there's supposed to be a sensor that can detect when gasoline enters the space between the bladder and the surrounding "tank."
     
  7. bestmapman

    bestmapman 04, 07 ,08, 09, 10 and 16 Pri

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    I think DiamonLarry filled to 13.1 one time. I have filled to 12.6 once, so I think you are OK.
     
  8. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    I guess this means I'm going to get 600+ miles on the current tank :)
     
  9. David Beale

    David Beale Senior Member

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    Yes, if you destroyed the bladder the car would throw a code.

    The carbon canister is in the fuel tank -outside- the bladder. There's pictures of it on this site.

    It's possible you overfilled, stuck a valve in the vapour recovery system, and the valve released with a pop. Or you were just overly sensitive. ;)

    I suspect there is no problem with your car. The new gas station, well that's another matter. Sounds like they need to calibrate their fuel nossles so they shut off correctly. Good job catching it before you had a fuel fountain (if you manage to overfill enough, you get fuel gushing out when you remove the nossle. If this happens, -DON'T PANIC- {couldn't resist ;) }. Press the nossle down to make a "leak" at the top. That will let vapour pressure leak out - the excess vapour is what is trying to force the fuel out of the filler tube. Eventually you will release enough vapour that you can safely remove the nossle.)
     
  10. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    I agree with David. The new gas station has a pump that didn't click off, causing you to overfill. The extra fuel ends up in the filler tube. It's not a great thing to do, but usually not damaging.

    As others have pointed out, if you have a tank bladder problem the system will throw an error code.

    Tom
     
  11. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    Thanks everyone. I feel much better now :)
     
  12. Celtic Blue

    Celtic Blue New Member

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    Another 2 pip failure of the gas gauge, and a reasonable response to the out of gas condition. How much did it take to fill after that?

    I doubt the bladder has popped, but if it has they will have to replace all that junk under warranty, so that's a good thing.
     
  13. donee

    donee New Member

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    Hi All,

    The carbon cannister is inside the metal casing of the gas tank, next to the bladder.
     
  14. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

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    Actually, the canister is located on top of the fuel tank.

    See autoshop101.com and look for page 3-5 of Hybrid13 Fuel and EVAP System.pdf within the Technical Articles section of that website.
     
  15. tinaeva

    tinaeva Junior Member

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    Hello, everyone. This is my first post. Just got a 2009 Prius and haven't put gas in it yet. Have just got to the last 'pip' as you say. We were wondering how many gallons each pip represents and that's why I came on the forum.

    But this post scares the dickens out of me! You 'ran out of gas while on the freeway with two pips left'. How does that happen?! The manual says the last pip flashes when there are 3 gallons of fuel left. I sure don't want to run out of gas when I think the tank is 1/4 full. I didn't know anything about the tank having a bladder in it. Now I'm wondering if we should have gotten a 2010 instead of the great 0% financing we got on the 2009. I gather it has a normal tank.

    Is this particular fuel gauge unreliable? Will go out now and get some gas!!

    Kris
     
  16. mdeguzman0916

    mdeguzman0916 New Member

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    i think each pips i equal to a gallon. it only takes 10 gallons to fill up the tank in my 2005. i counted each pip and it has 10. i think its a gallon each but im not sure. i just got my 05 a few month a go. still learning. "DOGFRIEND" usually have a great answer for ur question. :rockon:
     
  17. Hytec

    Hytec New Member

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    I have a 2005 with 48K, and have observed that Pips are non-linear with respect to fuel use. I usually get about 360-400 miles to a tank. The Pips stay at 100% until I have driven 150-180 miles, then they start decreasing. They decrease more rapidly the closer I get to empty, much like analog fuel gauges reacted in years past.
     
  18. tinaeva

    tinaeva Junior Member

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    Thanks to both responders to my post. Needless to say, I am much better informed about the whole gas thing as a result of this form. Hytec, we observed the same thing with our gauge. My husband kept thinking something was wrong with the gauge because it stayed full for so long. And since I'm the primary driver, I've definitely noticed it changed faster, the fewer pips there are. From now on, will get gas when it hits 2, I think.

    We had 1 pip left, not blinking, today when we filled the tank. Got just over 9 gallons in and the fuel tank shut off. Pips went up to 10. This first tank averaged 44.4 mph, a little disappointing, but I'm just learning how to drive it, so hope it will improve.

    Appreciate your comments.

    Kris
     
  19. Betelgeuse

    Betelgeuse Active Member

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    Hi Kris. Welcome to Priuschat and Prius ownership.

    One thing I just wanted to point out: don't try to guess how much gas you have in the tank; the car will always win that stare-down. Because of the bladder-lined fuel tank (discussed at the beginning of this thread) and the non-linear gas gauge, it's pretty hard to know exactly how much gas you have less. Many of us fill at 2 "pips" just to be sure, since there are stories of people going <10 miles between the flashing pip and running out of gas. It's not the norm, but it has been known to happen.

    I really love our car and have had 4 trouble-free years out of it, but the gas gauge is a bit of a weakness; way too variable and non-linear for my tastes.
     
  20. Doc Willie

    Doc Willie Shuttlecraft Commander

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    Also many popping sounds are from small stones or other debris that get wedged into the tire tread and get spit out as you get up to speed. Just a guess.
     
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