fuel guage with blinking 1 left, how many much gas left?

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by wfz, Aug 2, 2012.

  1. wfz

    wfz Junior Member

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    This is 2008 Prius. I'm curious on how much gas is left with 1 blinking square left on fuel guage. I've driven 50 more miles since it started blinking. The car runs at ~ 47MPG on commutes everyday. The last time I had it blinking on highway, I filled up the gas in the next exit. My estimate was there were still 2.5 Gallons left when it started blinking. What is your experience?

    I have a gas tank with a few gallons of gas so I'm not concerned that I may be stranded on road.
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    not much, time to phillip.
     
  3. gmcneil05

    gmcneil05 Member

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    All you can do is take your average MPG and divide it into your miles on the tank to see how much you have left.
     
  4. stevemcelroy

    stevemcelroy Active Member

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    Search for the Gen II fuel bladder as this has been discussed here quite a bit, though not as much recently as Toyota stopped using the bladder in the Gen III. I rarely push it - when I hit 3 or 4 pips I'll fill up at the next station that I see with good prices.

    The issue is that the bladder is made of a resin that expands and contracts so unlike most cars it is impossible to know exactly how much gas you have in the tank. You will wind up developing a feel for it.

    The one thing to keep in mind that outside temp really affects the tank capacity. It does not even need to be all that cold to affect how much the tank expands. I found that even in early Fall as soon as night time temps started to fall and the days were warm/hot but not scorching the capacity of the tank became lower. So, depending on where you live just be careful as what you can get away with today might not be the same as what you can do in a month or two.
     
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  5. Stev0

    Stev0 Honorary Hong Kong Cavalier

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    Do a search in the forum on "Guess Gage". One day you'll go to a blinking pip and then a half mile later find yourself with a totally empty tank.

    Personally, I fill up ASAP as soon as it gets to one (non-blinking) pip. Sometimes I still have a couple of gallons left, sometimes (like yesterday) I only have half a gallon left.
     
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  6. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    The 2004-2009 series, with its fuel bladder and 'guess gauge', is infamous for unpredictability. Many have gone much farther than you have. But numerous others have reported running out of fuel long before this point, some with no blinking, and a few with even two bars remaining.
     
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  7. mcmoyer

    mcmoyer Junior Member

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    I don't pay attention to the gas gauge on my 2008. It's completely random when it says it's empty. I take my current mpg * 10 and that is how far I drive. I usually go ~570 miles per tank. When I get to the gas station, I always get right at 10 gallons in it.
     
  8. wfz

    wfz Junior Member

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    Thanks for the information and suggestions.
     
  9. PNorth

    PNorth Junior Member

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    My wife's got a 2007 and I've got a 2008, and we both find that as soon as we get the flashing fuel indicator (the last square), we can safely drive another 70 Km (44 miles).
     
  10. fgoodyear

    fgoodyear New Member

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    Do not pass go, do not collect $200..... Go directly to a gas station... now!
     
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  11. acz

    acz Grandpa

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    With both my 2003 and my 2005 Prius, on those occasions when it reached blinking, I had anywhere from 0.5 to 1.5 gallons in the tank.
    So, I make the somewhat arbitrary assumption that blinking means I have no more than 40 miles to gas up.
    Therefore my practice is to start actively looking for gas when I still have one or two bars, and to find gas ASAP when the last bar is blinking. So far so good.
     
  12. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    I have had the Blinking Pip run dry in 7 miles, I heard of another poster who got only 5 miles.

    I developed a routine that makes me happy:

    If my mother in law is in the car, get gas at 3 pips. Nothing on earth could be worse that the fall out from leaving her stranded in the car with no A/C while I get 3 gallons of gas.

    If my wife is in the car, I get gas at 2 pips, I will never live down leaving her in the car while I walk.

    When driving solo, I get gas at 1 pip, no one need know I ran out.

    If that pip stats blinking, get gas NOW.

    (I have had it go from 2 pips to one blinking pip during the drive through)
     
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  13. Lamboalex

    Lamboalex Hyper-Miler in training

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    Everytime I thought I had enough gas, I've gotten the red triangle. I don't try anymore
     
  14. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    You are about to switch to EV only mode . . . . even tho you didn't know you had EV only mode.
    :sneaky:
     
  15. tomguild

    tomguild smugmobile owner

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    That's funny, but seriously - having a gas can in your Prius shouldn't be your "remedy" if you discover one day that the blinking pip means "no go no mo". From everything I've read, actually running out of gas in a Prius has a high potential to damage the car's hybrid system - it's not like letting your lawnmower run out of fuel. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but filling up from a spare gas can may not get your Prius running again...
     
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  16. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    The Gen 2 needs over 3 gallons of gas to 'reset' the system. I am unsure if other Prius need as much.
     
  17. Daves09prius

    Daves09prius Active Member

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    I've read others getting 500+ miles out a tank of gas. I usually fill up at 2 or 1 block. I've never gotten anything close to 500 miles. The most I've ever gotten was 430 miles, the most I've ever had to fill the tank is 8.5 gallons. I know I can drive further after 1 block, but I don't want to get left stranded somewhere because I was too lazy to put gas in the car...

    :mad: I hate the guess gauge!:mad: I wish there was a way to convert the tank to a traditional fuel cell without the bladder.
     
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  18. dorunron

    dorunron Senior Member

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    Yeah, the guess gage is not the greatest and the bladder just makes things worse. Quoting your signature file; Current MPG AVE: 46.2 Driving Style: Fast and In-control.

    I won't knock that one bit. I too average around 45 overall. Recently I tried a couple of things that helped my numbers. You have probably heard these before. Air Pressure on tires 42 Front 40 Rear, limit A/C when possible, utilize Pulse and Glide technique when speed limits allow it, and drive no faster than 62. By changing those four items, I have been able to squeeze an extra 6 to 7 MPG out of each gallon which in turn comes up to 51 or 52 instead of 45 MPG. 51 MPG X 8.5 gallons of fuel gives you a range of 433.5 without hitting the flashing pip. 52 MPG x 8.5 gallons of fuel gives you a range of 442. I think those who are setting those 500 + figures are averaging close to 55.56 and burning around 9 gallons of fuel. I usually travel anywhere from 300 to 375 miles before I refuel, and by doing that I usually refuel at 3 pips. Only once in a while will I see two pips when I refuel. Like yourself, I don't trust the gage. I go by miles travelled and current MPG, but I am conservative in my calcs. I figure 45 MPG and no more than 8.5 gallons of fuel before I refuel. As long as I am truly averaging 45 MPG or better, I can safely travel 375 miles with no fear of running out of gas if I started out with a full tank.

    Here is a shot of the current tank showing the numbers by the computer which everyone knows is a little higher than reality. That should give you an idea of my actual mileage.

    Anyway I am not knocking or criticising anything you are doing, rather I am simply sharing with you what I found that really helped my numbers.

    Happy Driving :)

    Ron

    PS Anytime I get poor MPG, I just think about the SUV I used to drive that got 14 MPG and cost almost $100 to fill. Then I realize how good us Prius owner's really have it!
     

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  19. Wolfy90503

    Wolfy90503 Junior Member

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    I filled up soon after the final bar started blinking and put in about 8.8 gallons of gas. So, at 57mpg and 3 gallons in the tank, I still had 171 mile range. Pretty amazing!
     

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  20. R-P

    R-P Active Member

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    Just rode in the passengerseat of someone owning a Suburban from the 80's... She never fills it up as that would be close to 300$ with our gasprices... (Even the Prius was close to 100$ a few years ago...)

    I also managed to get the Prius to under 20mpg this holiday for more than half an hour... :eek:
    OK, so it was driving up a mountain pass*, but still... And the bloody HV battery is full after just a few hundred yards going down hill, so after that, all accumulated extra potential energy is wasted in "B" and braking...:cry:
    I need a 10x bigger HV battery!!!


    *: with the 5 of us plus luggage for 3 weeks as I still haven't fixed the AC on our Volvo V70, which is kind of necessary in Italy with >>100F/45C temps :D
     
    #20 R-P, Aug 26, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2015
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