From o2 sensor to engine replacement in 10 days?

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by FantasticalMagicOne, Dec 29, 2018.

  1. FantasticalMagicOne

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    Thank you, I saw both of those videos and the guy in the first one just makes me shake my head every time I see it.
     
  2. FantasticalMagicOne

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    Checked the car today and wasn't surprised when it showed 2 purple battery bars. I had hooked up torque pro, which I bought last week to have a way to test while driving that didn't include bringing my laptop, and I added PIDs (though which ones are most helpful, I don't know).
    Surprisingly, the check engine and other warning lights were absent. Not surprising, P3190 and P0137 appeared. When I started the engine, it began to charge the battery, which I expected as I've narrowed this problem to when the gas pedal is engaged, but I was surprised when it charged until the battery was green. The voltage on the HV blocks was adequate, and the rest I was unsure about. I decided to take it for a drive, and I took random screenshots along the way. Not sure if these things are in the right range and if they're supposed to fluxuate so much. The HV battery fan was consistently 0.0 (scary). The battery seemed to charge and discharge as it should while driving, but accelerating didn't eat up the battery power. It did get down to 3 bars while I was climbing a steep hill, but never hit purple. I drove about 10 miles, all local driving (highest speed 40mph), and the check engine light did not come back on.

    upload_2019-1-11_18-26-56.png


    upload_2019-1-11_18-40-46.png
     
  3. FantasticalMagicOne

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    I went back out a few hours later to see if I yielded the same results. Nope. The car took a moment to start, when the engine finally kicked on, it shook pretty hard, and then PROBLEM flashed right before the check engine light, master warning light, and the hybrid system warning light were on. The engine has shut itself off, but came on about 10 or 15 seconds later. The temperature dropped quite a bit over the course of those 3 hours, it was about 25F (if that) and now it's 17F.

    Ran techstream - same codes.
     
  4. landspeed

    landspeed Active Member

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    Hi! I have read through this whole thread; very interesting and frustrating. Hope you can fix it soon!

    One thing I will say - never go under a car without an axle stand or the like. Car jacks can break (strip threads or hydraulic failure) and you get squashed - and (sort of) worse is that you are alive, but can only breathe out - not in - the car literally suffocates you with the weight. Please get axle stand or ramps before going under the car!

    Another - get linesman's gloves / high voltage gloves before going near the HV battery.

    With that said, I noticed:
    Jan 3rd:
    'When I was done running the diagnostic, I could smell something electrical burning from the back of the car. I couldn't smell it from the front seat, but it was strong when I went around to remove the donut from the trunk.'

    and SFO said on Jan 5th 'would be very worried, and wouldn't drive the vehicle (much less start it) until you have this electrical issue sorted out. That area around the 12v battery is where the warm air exits from the HV battery before going out the passenger wheel well. You need to tear apart the hatch area and look for any tell tale signs of this burning electrical smell, and if seeing none you should take off the HV battery cover and look at the wiring harness.'

    And... on Thursday, you said: '
    But I wanted to note, for anyone who may encounter this problem in the future that the draining of the HV battery only happens when you attempt to accelerate. The car did take a long time to shut itself off when idling, and still shakes when it does. However, I did notice that when the ICE starts again (as it should), it powers the battery (as it should). The HV battery will have a good charge after the car is off for awhile, what awhile equates to, I don't know. I can tell you that it definitely does this over night.''

    My 2 cents:
    (First - are you saying the HV battery seems to charge up by itself overnight? if so, then my comments below are even more relevant)...

    There is discussion of removing the inverter to get to that sensor. That is a big job and requires accessing the high voltage battery (partially) in order to disengage the high voltage supply safety thing.

    When disabling the HV battery, it is possible to remove the 'driver side' rear seat with two bolts, remove the left hand panels, and gain access to the part of the HV battery where all the computers etc are. Given the burning smell this might be worth doing quickly. I believe the O2 sensor is a problem as well but the hybrid system playing up intermittently may involve the HV battery ECU (which is in the battery casing) given the types of behaviour your car has been doing.

    If you decide to do this, you dont even need to remove the HV battery - just remove the little side cover. Get advice on here how to do it if you want to do this. You must disable the high voltage by removing the orange pull tab. Even then there are ways the voltage could still kill you so proceed with extreme caution.

    Will keep an eye on this thread; good luck!
     
  5. FantasticalMagicOne

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    Yes, I will ensure to get the proper equipment before ever getting under a vehicle. I planned on obtaining a good pair of gloves for this.


    I did not attempt to change the sensor myself this weekend. The more I look into the removal and replacement of the inverter, the more I think it's better left in the hands of an experienced individual. I'm handy, fur sure, and I'm sure that I can handle a multitude of jobs, but I'm not confident that this is where I should start. I didn't realize how much was involved in that piece until I looked into it further. Also, it was about 20 degrees here, and I don't have a garage so being outside long enough to change this part was not in the cards anyhow.

    The Vice President of Guest Experience at the dealership contacted me about the complaint I filed with corporate. I ran through everything that happened in regard to the 3 services, since my car was brought in 3 separate times, and she said that she'd have to speak to everyone involved with the work done on my car and that it would take a day or 2 (this was Thursday), then she would get back to me on how to proceed. I'm not certain that it will go anywhere, but at least someone got back to me. She didn't agree or disagree with anything I said (as it's her job), but I think she's smart enough to know that you don't drive a vehicle with a dead engine very far. Between the driving my mechanic friend did the day he looked at it, my drive home, and both test drives, I've put about 90 miles on it.

    I'm still greatly concerned about letting anyone there touch it, due to all of the happenings in the last month. But perhaps @JC91006 has the right idea in that I should request one of the higher technicians to take a look at it. Of course, they may decide that they won't look at it at all. I suppose I'll know soon enough.
     
    #345 FantasticalMagicOne, Jan 13, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2019
  6. JC91006

    JC91006 Senior Member

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    You should follow up with the dealer tomorrow. I don't think guest relations is the right people to handle your situation, but it's a first step.

    If you decide to have the dealer follow up on the repairs, you should not attempt the repairs yourself or they'll say you touched it and it's not their fault
     
  7. FantasticalMagicOne

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    I didn't make an attempt to repair the car. I'm not sure if she's the right person either, but she's the one who called me. So she's the one I spoke to. They know I got a second opinion on it, and I think that they're likely to say that he touched it and it's not their fault. If nothing else, the complaint is filed. I'm sure if they can find a way out of it, they'll take it.

    In the meantime, I have my other half's vehicle for the week. So there's a small window of time to figure out where to go from here.
     
  8. Skibob

    Skibob Senior Member

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    Basically her job is to either smooth things over or cover things up because of your complaint to Toyota corporate. Don’t expect much. I called the president of Toyota North America about it taking 10 weeks to get an ECU for my MR2, got to his secretary. Didn’t help a bit. The best you can expect is they will change the fuel air sensor for free if you have the car towed in at your expense.
     
  9. FantasticalMagicOne

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    I don't expect much of anything, I haven't heard back and if I don't by the time they close today, then I'll call in the morning when the kids aren't home. I'm not sure I want them to touch it considering, but I can't help but wonder what would happen if my suspicions are confirmed via the other dealership. I have the sensor, it would be comparable to the cost of a 30 mile tow, and I'd have my car back without the risk of electrocution. I know I'll be walking into horrible customer service, which will be less than fun, but I'd describe this entire ordeal as less than fun.

    Smoothing this over would be their best bet as covering it up will be a daunting task. They claim that a diagnostic wasn't run when I brought them the first sensor, but the invoice shows that they cleared codes P0031 (oxygen a/f sensor heater control circuit low) and P2237 (a generic code o2 sensor bank1 sensor 1). Which means that the downstream sensor would have thrown a code then, had I actually needed it. My second invoice for the downstream sensor and catalytic converter shows no codes cleared, implying that they didn't run the diagnostic that I paid for (I want to see proof that they ran it). Why didn't they know the day before when they ran the software to clear the codes? How did they know what was supposed to be fixed without running one? Why didn't they test drive the car on either occasion? And is this how you missed all the oil sludge in my destroyed engine? Does oil sludge disappear when a vehicle sits for 6 days? How far can you drive with a dead engine? According to my odometer, at least 92 miles. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
     
  10. FantasticalMagicOne

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    UPDATE: We opted to bring it to the other dealership because the cost was similar and insert everything mentioned above.

    Yesterday, they noted that the sensors were reading all over the place and requested to keep it over night to continue the diagnostic and figure out why. They did not change the upstream sensor, despite my request to change it no matter what. I authorized another hour of diagnostic as I wanted documentation of what resolved this issue a.k.a what the heck went wrong.

    Today they told me that the engine needed to be replaced. Said all of their tech tells them where to look and everything is pointing to a sludge filled engine. I heard the tech in the background nothing that I had missed several oil changes and that's likely why. To which I replied, despite it being another party, that my oil changes are done privately and that going by the last sticker on the windshield will always be inaccurate (I did tell them that before they took it in). They said that the only way to confirm was to remove the intake manifold and look. Noted that if they did find sludge that they'd call me down to see it for myself. Also mentioned, as noted by another on this thread, that I can spend a lot of money chasing down the problem and never find it.

    The first dealership called me back to tell me that they weren't changing the diagnosis (astonishing). I asked if they opened the intake manifold to confirm and the answer was no. They said that they confirmed by carbon on the pistons and could see the valves touching the top of the pistons combined with low engine power codes. This is the first I've heard anything like this. They also told me it came in with no oil and that's likely what started it, but we know that there was oil as I checked before I went in, and I'm sure some of you recall the concern about the slight overfill. Said that they'd still be willing to give me the engine replacement for $2,300* but it was up to me, and also wanted to note that I had the option of getting a new one (of course).

    I called the 2nd dealership back and left a message. I want to know how much oil was in the car (how fast is it burning) and if they checked the pistons and valves.

    The cost of checking the manifold would be about $130 and the cost of replacing the sensor will be about $165. This of course, is in addition to the cost of the 5hr diagnostic (I did not approve 5 hrs :cautious:).

    I'm waiting to hear back from my step-dad (mechanic) and my friend (also mechanic), but those here know this car better than either of them. So, now what?

    *Not going back there
     
  11. Skibob

    Skibob Senior Member

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    Do a compression test yourself when you get the car back. I didn’t know that carbon formed by sludge in the engine. Did they explain how this happens?
     
  12. JC91006

    JC91006 Senior Member

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    I thought the plan was to get the new sensor installed and that's it?

    Unfortunately you've spent a lot of money on this car and if I were in your position, I would have a very hard time on deciding what to do next. The one good thing a dealership is good at, is finding problems to fix on your car. We all know your car is not perfect but it shouldn't have all these issues present after switching out the sensors and catalytic converter.

    If you have infinite amount of funds, maybe you want to pursue this and get to the bottom of it. But so far both diagnostics have pointed to a bad engine and it's hard counter that claim on the internet. There are many members that have gone through similar problems with their car, spending thousands and still not get the car to run. At the end, they donated their car and moved on and called it a day.

    I would be hesitant to get a new engine at $2300, just because there are other issues that will require you to put more money in the car. Ex. combination meter, inverter pump, brake actuator, hv battery etc. So it might just be at the point where it's going to be a money pit if you move forward.
     
  13. FantasticalMagicOne

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    I'm unfamiliar with that, but did read that I can do it with techstream. Not sure what I'm supposed to be looking for and also read about a leakdown test?
     
  14. Skibob

    Skibob Senior Member

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    The protocol is somewhere in these pages. You will need to rent a compression tester from a local auto parts store.
     
  15. FantasticalMagicOne

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    I found this:

    upload_2019-1-16_17-26-3.png
     
  16. Skibob

    Skibob Senior Member

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    Yes but you also need the compression tester itself. Patrick Ran thru what you need to do, I think?
     
  17. FantasticalMagicOne

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    Yes, I've put a lot of $$ into this replacing parts that had aged out, for lack of a better term. This is not an easy decision and it will be a lot of work regardless how we decide (I have a custom stereo/DVD player w/ screens in the head rests that I'll have to pull out and reinstall the factory one). The 2nd dealership knew about the 1st dealerships findings, which makes me a bit suspect (independently owned by different parties). I have no idea how changing sensors and a cat turned into such a nightmare. A surprise bon voyage from my engine?

    If I had infinite funds, I wouldn't be driving a 10yr old car:ROFLMAO:! I'm not going to spend thousands on this car, I can get a newer model for that kind of money. I know that dealership 1 lied about a number of things, and dealership 2 (murder world) has been unsavory, to say the least, in the past.

    If the decision leads to checking the manifold and discovering an accurate diagnosis, there's no way I'm dropping $2,300 on an engine. I already know to obtain the engine myself* and find an independent mechanic to do the transplant. But the concern about how well the previous owner took care of the engine remains present. Even then, the total cost would meet/exceed the value of the car.
    *Myself = my step-dad

    And all the other potential repairs listed remain a concern.
     
  18. FantasticalMagicOne

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    I'll have to check, but what results would I be looking for?

    If I decided to open up the manifold and find a sludgeless entity? Then what?

    Also, this guy (dealership 2) said that this is a very common problem with this car. This doesn't line up with what I've learned. I've seen where people have replaced the engine, but nothing noting sludge as the reason why.
     
  19. JC91006

    JC91006 Senior Member

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    Did the 2nd dealership at least tell you if the car was louder than normal? Suspected a leak somewhere in the exhaust system?
     
  20. Skibob

    Skibob Senior Member

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    Basically it will tell you if the compression is good or bad. If it’s bad you will be able to know if it’s the rings or the valves. The statement that carbon from the pistons is touching the valves is slightly concerning. Bent valves would cause low engine power. As far as the 2nd Toyota dealer knowing about the first they have access to those same files you can look at at Toyota.com. And probably more.
     
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