Gen 2 Prius P0A80 - Options/Advice?

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by jaydepun, May 24, 2022.

  1. jaydepun

    jaydepun New Member

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    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    TL;DR My 2005 Gen 2 Prius with ~145k miles on it in threw a P0A80 error code, wondering what my least worst option is.

    What happened:
    1. On my *return trip* from a nearby grocery store on a hot day, it threw the P0A80 error code (RTOD, vsc, exclamation point). I drove it home.
    2. I cleaned the battery fan (it was a little dirty) and cleared the code. Spoiler: this did not fix the problem.
    3. I ran a check with Dr. Prius, which said the battery was in bad shape but driveable.
    4. Drive maybe 30 miles on the highway with no issues
    5. The car threw the same error code again (same grocery store, about a minute further down the road, nice comfortable day, highest temp in the battery was mid-80s).
    6. I spent a lot of time looking at block voltages in Torque Pro while using the vehicle. It looks like everything charges up great, but Block 3 tends to discharge to a volt and change lower than other cells. Block 4 as well, although not as bad. Specifically: Down to upper 14V when the next lowest is ~15.8V or 15.9V. Everything seems to charge up to ~16.9V or lower 17V. The auxiliary battery has read a lowest voltage of ~13.8V, so I don't think it's that, although it was last replaced in 2015.
    7. When driving after the code, before clearing, the car's battery monitor went from blue to purple rather rapidly, took awhile, and eventually charged back up.
    The internet suggests I have a bad module or four. Is it possible that I actually just have a corrosion problem?

    My goal is to get at least two more years out of this car (I will be out of grad school by then and have worked long enough that I can get a new vehicle). For funsies I drive to New Hampshire or Vermont or New York for climbing/hiking/whatever.

    It looks like getting a proper replacement done (either from NewPriusBatteries or from the dealer) is perilously close to the value of this car (did I mention I'm a grad student?). So I'm considering:
    1. Maybe I'm wrong and lucky and there's an easy fix? That's not my life story, so...
    2. Reconditioning the battery, one module at a time (well, ideally four depending on the charger/discharger I'd beg, borrow, or steal), and replacing the bad ones. I know this will take ages.
    3. Buying a reconditioned battery from somewhere like PriusKings (there's one a few miles away in Somerville). The cheapest option from them seems to be ~$600 and I trade in my battery.
    4. Getting a real professional to tell me what's wrong.
    I'm comfortable with handy things, although I've never worked with electrical systems.

    Am I missing anything? How long should I expect a reconditioning to last? How long should I expect something reconditioned from elsewhere to last? How...driveable is the car with the battery misbehaving? Can I get back to Boston from the middle of nowhere in NH?
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    welcome!

    how many miles on her?
    you're not missing anything. it could be corrosion, but either way, you'll have to open up the battery.
    plenty of threads here describing cleaning and/or module replacement/balancing.

    there is no way to tell when another module might go out of balance after you complete repairs, the other modules are also 17 years old. some get lucky and some don't.
    some have gotton lucky just throwing a new module in every now and then, if you don't mind removing the battery as necessary.

    a refurbished battery is only as good as the warranty, and the strength of the company behind it.
    unfortunately, no one can tell you if you might get stuck in new hampster no matter which option you choose, although it is an unlikely scenario.
     
  3. jaydepun

    jaydepun New Member

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    Two
    It's got ~145k miles on it. Relatively low mileage, but also rather old.
     
  4. Gino Veltri

    Gino Veltri Member

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    It is worth getting some chargers (amazon has a great return policy btw) and taking the battery apart. I got another 2 years out of mine without replacing a single module, just discharging and charging (and that was already a reconditioned pack). But there is A TON of shit to learn about the process that I still dont know.
    If youre a grad student, like me, or just cheap, also like me; this is the most cost efficient choice but time consuming but also fun to learn....just my two cents. If youve got $ just buy a new battery from toyota ONLY.
     
  5. jaydepun

    jaydepun New Member

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    2005 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Yeah I've taken out the battery, disassembled it, decided that I did not want to bother with _owning_ the equipment to do this (I already have a too-small woodshop), and that I don't have the level of interest in doing this twice, and called Toyota.

    They took my money for a battery, were all set for me to pick it up, and then...wouldn't release the battery to me. The sales rep (seems helpful, I have no problems with the guy), is being stone-walled by his manager because Toyota considers it hazmat and is enforcing rules they might not have in the past. So...maybe they'll do the labor? Although I'm leaving the trunk disassembled whilst I wait for them to figure that out...

    I think they might have a case? The relevant law seems to be CFR 49/173.159 (I am too noob to post links)

    I'm not a big fan of any of this but I want to drive this car into the ground and not think about the hybrid battery.

    On the bright side I am taking this as an opportunity to add some sound insulation.
     
  6. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    Check the wheel bearings. No point in adding insulation when you can eliminate noise at the source. 150k miles can make them sound like airplane engines.

    Everyone forgets how silently these cars can glide around on fresh wheel bearings.
     
    jaydepun likes this.
  7. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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    Get a friendly mechanic shop to pick it up for you. They will probably get a discount over your price and can make some dollars in the process.
     
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