Engine coolant change DIY video posted

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by jreed, Jan 26, 2015.

  1. jreed

    jreed Member

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    I made a short video this weekend to show one method that works for draining out the old SLLC engine coolant, refilling with new, and bleeding out the air that gets trapped in the system.
    Part 1:


    Part 2:

     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    that's well done, thank you!(y)
     
  3. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    There's a coolant dump bolt on the back of the engine too. Right behind the exhaust mani. Total capacity is 9 quarts.
     
  4. jreed

    jreed Member

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    Yes, thanks, that's a good idea! I haven't tried opening up the bolt on the back of the engine to get the rest of the coolant out... I only managed to get out about 6-7 qts, so there is still probably 2-3 qts of coolant remaining if you just drain using the petcock at the coolant storage tank.
     
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  5. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Nicely done though. Thanks
     
  6. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

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    In my experience, only a tiny amount of coolant will come out of the engine block drain if you first drain at the coolant heat recovery system canister while leaving the radiator cap on to suck fluid out of the overflow container. The remaining 3 quarts of coolant is trapped, probably because of the presence of the heater core electric pump and associated plumbing.

    It works well just to open the drain at the CHRS canister, and that is certainly easier to get to than the engine block drain.
     
  7. stonerider

    stonerider Junior Member

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    Great job, jreed! Watching your video gave me the knowledge and courage to tackle engine coolant replacement job myself. Thank you very much.
     
  8. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    On previous cars it was always said to set cabin temp to high, to get more coolant out. Does that still apply, or is it possible, with digital temp setting??
     
  9. jreed

    jreed Member

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    That's an interesting question. I haven't tried it and I'm not sure what the right answer is.
    I checked up on the coolant change procedure described in the Bentley manual for the 2004-2008 Prius, and it doesn't mention this technique.
     
  10. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

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    It won't help when draining the coolant since the car is off. However when working on getting air out of the coolant, you need to set the heater temp to MAX HEAT and turn the fan on the highest speed, when revving up the engine to circulate the coolant and get the air out.
     
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  11. stonerider

    stonerider Junior Member

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    Is there a video for inverter coolant change, like jreed did for engine coolant?
     
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  12. valde3

    valde3 Senior Member

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    #12 valde3, Jan 30, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2015
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  13. stonerider

    stonerider Junior Member

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    So, I just got it completed, I think. I had trouble disconneting the electrical connector next to the thingamajjie that you loosen the let the fluid out. It took a looooong time for the coolant to drain out; I had the radiator cap opened and the bleeder valve loosened 4 turns. Anyway, how do you know you got air completely out? What are the symptoms if you still have air in the engine coolant system? I test drove the car and seemed fine, I took the radiator cap off and it was dark, so I filled it some more until it was full to the neck, maybe a few tea spoonfulls.

    According to the video above by jreed, he said at one point that refilling takes a long time and it's the most difficult part of the job. I didn't nearly have a difficult time refilling; it did take a long time but I was able to fill the first gallon without turning on the pump. The next half gallon took some pains to get it going.

    How do you know if there's still air?
    How do you get the air out, after you think you filled it up?
    How do you refill the coolant if you notice it's not up to the neck?
     
  14. jreed

    jreed Member

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    I had trouble disconnecting the electrical connector the first time too! It was really stuck on, even after I depressed the catch lever. I put a bit of silicone paste on the connector the last time, which makes disconnecting it much easier the next time.
    One helpful way to get the air out is to drive around a short distance with the heat on, up and down hills if there are some in your area. This should help jostle any bubbles up and out. Then you can remove the radiator cap and refill it up to the top. Then drive a bit more and check the level of the coolant in the radiator neck. If it's still up to the top, the odds are good that you've bled all the air out of the system. From that point, all you need to do is monitor the level of coolant in the overflow tank to make sure it's between Min and Max, and you should be good to go.
    Given the uncertainty about whether or not there is still air trapped in the system somewhere, I measure what I take out during the drain phase, and then until I get an equal amount back in during the refill/bleed phase, I'm pretty sure that there must still be air trapped.
    Good luck! Let us know how it goes!
    :)
     
  15. stonerider

    stonerider Junior Member

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    It's my wife's car, so I won't be able to check the radiator cap until the weekend. One thing I noticed after I had refilled the coolant and test drove, there was about a 1/2" on the bottom of the overflow tank.
     
  16. jreed

    jreed Member

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    That's a good sign that the level is nearly right. I would top up the fill neck under the radiator cap and then top up the overflow tank to halfway between min and max, and you should be good to go!

    :)
     
  17. stonerider

    stonerider Junior Member

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    I was able to take a look at my wife's car last night. Coolant was almost to the neck of the radiator cap, but the overflow tank was totally empty. I dropped a couple teaspoonful of coolant to the neck, and refilled the overflow to the middle level. Since the weekend when I first changed the coolant, wife drove the car about 150 miles and she didn't notice anything unusual. I think I have completed the job at this point. I will keep checking the coolant every weekend for the next few weeks.

    Thanks, jreed!

    PS: I am planning on changing the inverter coolant as well as the transaxle oil tomorrow. Big thanks to your videos!!!
     
  18. jreed

    jreed Member

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    Great result! I'm glad to hear that it's all looking good! Good luck on the inverter coolant and transaxle oil change jobs!
    :)
     
  19. stonerider

    stonerider Junior Member

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    Just changed transaxle oil, boy the plugs (24mm socket and 10 mm hex key) were tough to crack open. After the plugs were unscrewed, the rest was easy-peasy. I filled almost 3.9 Qt of the Toyota ATF WS, cost me $38 for the 4 Qt at the dealer. Old transaxle oil came out very very dark, almost black with a red tinge, the drain plug had fine bits of steel stuck to the magnet, I didn't see any large slivers of steel at all. Test drove it and it ran smoother. Next project is changing the inverter fluid, I just hope the drain plug there is not as tough to unscrew.
     
  20. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    3rd gen doesn't have magnetic plug any mo. :(
     
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