Got the p0a80 code on my 2004 Prius and have a few questions

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Technical Discussion' started by Tetra, Apr 20, 2018.

  1. Tetra

    Tetra New Member

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    The red triangle of death came on a couple days ago (along with the exclamation point and vsc light) and the check engine light had been on due to code p1121, which I had been procrastinating to fix. So I decided to go ahead and replace the coolant control valve (thanks to Stomper88's walk through) to deal with the p1121 code. Afterwords, I cleared the codes and all the warning lights went off and popped back on a couple hours later. I scanned again with my diagnostic tool and it didn't detect anything so I took it to Autozone and their's came back with a p0a80 code. I'm guessing my scan tool is cheap or I did something wrong.

    Anyways...I've spent a few hours reading about my options and first considered getting a refurbished battery (Dorman hybrid battery at about $1,400) but it does seems a high percentage of people who went that route end up wishing they had gotten a new Toyota battery to begin with. The Toyota dealership quoted me a new battery at $2,500. So here's my questions...

    My Prius is a 2004 with 163,000 miles, so maybe it's past the prime to invest money in a new battery that could go toward a new (used) car?

    Between my job and other obligations I average over 15,000 miles a year on the road. Would this high mileage make getting a refurbished battery even more riskier?

    My Multi Function Display only works sporadically, does replacing the battery with new or refurbed require the use of the MFD?

    I'm still calling around, but does anyone know of a good place to buy a new battery around the Atlanta location that's better than $2,500?

    I'm hopefully going to decide by tomorrow and thanks for any thoughts, opinions or tips.
     
  2. SFO

    SFO Senior Member

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    Welcome to PriusChat!!

    Does that $2500 quote include installation?

    Check out @Hometown Hybrids for *new* and rebuilt options, delivered for less :

    Hybrid Car Battery Repair & Replacement | Hometown Hybrids

    And if your lucky another respected PC member (from your area) might chime in with a HV battery offering.
     
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  3. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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  4. Hometown Hybrids

    Hometown Hybrids Junior Member

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    “My Favorite Automotive” at 1618 Dekalb Ave NE in Atlanta will install a customer supplied battery for $225.
     
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  5. ericbecky

    ericbecky Hybrid Battery Hero

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    Dorman now has a 12 month warranty.

    New Toyota battery for $2,500 installed is a great deal.
     
  6. dolj

    dolj Senior Member

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    I second that. Honestly, I don't think you will find a better deal on a factory new HV battery.

    As far a 163,000 mi, that is still lowish and you should be able to easily achieve 200,000 miles. That is 2.5 years at your current rate. In my opinion, that is worth it.
     
  7. Tetra

    Tetra New Member

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    Yep, ended up going with @TMR-JWAP. He had a few different options available and I ended up going with a "Gen 2 HV battery, reborn on January 16, 2018, rejuvenated by Gen 4 HV battery modules selflessly donated by a 2016 Prius taken out of service while entirely too young". For Sale - Gen 2 HV battery built with Gen 4 modules | PriusChatHere's the original ad

    He was extremely knowledgeable and walked me through the entire process. Scanned and ran the numbers on my old battery through Techstream and pointed out the bad modules, removal/installation of the battery, and took the casing off the old battery to look at the individual modules. They were all the original made in 2004 (I was unaware that each module would have it's own serial # and date on them). After the new battery was installed he hooked Techstream back up and we took it for a spin with ac blasting, quick take-offs and hard braking, etc..

    All in all I got the sense he had a clear and in depth understanding of knowing the overall health and lifespan of the hv battery and modules and was interested in offering out a battery he was confident in. He also told me to call him if I had any concerns or questions. It's only been a day but it's driving beautifully so far and I will update if anything changes. So I ended up saving at least $800 (if I went the new Toyota battery route) and feel good about my Prius again. Thanks @TMR-JWAP!
     
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  8. ericbecky

    ericbecky Hybrid Battery Hero

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    Tetra,
    Glad you got a good deal from a trusted person.

    I do want to point out that although it cost $800 less, there is a difference between a two year old battery and a brand new battery.

    They are different and are not the same product. One is New. One is Used.

    Fortunately those differences may not be noticeable today. It will only be noticeable after many cycles down the road. Which may not even be of importance to your situation.
     
    #8 ericbecky, Apr 23, 2018
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2018
  9. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

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    Toyota says the Gen 4 modules have better quality Nickel. We will see if that improves longevity.
     
  10. Tetra

    Tetra New Member

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    Yep, I'm fully aware of the difference between a brand new battery, and a 2 year old battery with 11,000+ miles on it. I was actually very close to buying a new Toyota battery and I called 6 or 7 dealership in my area. I was somewhat surprised to find the price difference at Toyota dealerships to fluctuate so much. There was nearly a $500 variance in the price of a new battery and $250 variance in the price of installation. And most of these dealerships I called were within a 25 mile radius of each other. For some reason I had imagined these Toyota dealerships to be just corporate run extensions of Toyota, with set prices. In reality they are just the private middle-man for the product, with the sales manager at each location setting prices for the cars, parts and service (I'm guessing).

    Another interesting difference in each dealership I called was their willingness to sell the battery without installation. It ranged from basically "Yep, just come pick up." to "We can't sell this to the public, you have to be in a hazmat suit to work with these." The places that would sell a battery to me just made sure I knew any warrant would be void if Toyota didn't install it, which makes sense. I'm somewhat handy working on cars as long as there's a good walk-through, but after talking with a couple of them I was having second thoughts about tackling the installation myself (also the wife was able to hear the precautionary warnings the dealership was pointing out over the phone and didn't like the idea of me working on it). After watching @TMR-JWAP uninstall and reinstall the batteries it looked pretty straight-forward...but of course he's done the process countless times and he mentioned he's worked around electricity his whole life.

    And as Prodigyplace pointed out, the Gen 4 modules are apparently a better quality technology than the Gen 2. That's also a reason I didn't go with the rebuilt batteries that are commonly offered from Dorman or the onsite-installation services. It seems the pool from which they are getting their modules from is aging and becoming less dependable as time goes by as evidenced by the many reports on this forum of people having to get their battery replaced 2 or 3 times in a year and sometimes having to fight to get the warranty observed. If I end up getting 3 years out of the battery I'll be very content. Though based on my limited understanding of the battery and modules, it appears there's a very good chance I'll see a good bit more.
     
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  11. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

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    They lied.
    If you install the battery Toyota provides a 1 year warranty. If the dealer installs it, there is a 3 year warranty.

    It is the dealer's choice whether they will sell the battery without installation.
     
  12. Tetra

    Tetra New Member

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    Interesting, because 2 of the places I called said you only get a warranty if they install it. Perhaps the same way a dealer can decide price, they can also have a say in granting the non-installed warranty or not? Or maybe they really wanted to tack on the installation profit.
     
  13. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

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    I doubt it. It is a Toyota warranty.
    @ericbecky was able to straighten out a dealer that was confused on battery warranty. He buys from a dealer & resells Toyota batteries.

    EDIT:

    Here is the dealer memo, from another thread here.

     
    #13 Prodigyplace, Apr 24, 2018
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2018
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  14. ericbecky

    ericbecky Hybrid Battery Hero

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    They are wrong. I'm sure it is easy to make a mistake on a part that they rarely sell to individuals.

    Toyota is the one that provides the warranty. Not the dealer. 12 months if sold across the counter. 36 months if dealer installed.

    PS. I don't add the additional 2 years. It is not really needed. The thing will last well beyond 1 year, 2 years or 3 years without me adding on some unnecesary additional warranty fee for customers.

    Tetra, care to share names of the folks that told you no warranty? I'd be interested in providing a correcion to them.
     
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  15. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

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    I corrected my post, thanks.
     
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  16. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    You know how a dealer isn't telling you the whole truth? Their lips move.

    Warranties come from the manufacturer of the product NOT the dealer. With some stated exceptions like tires, batteries, wiper blades, etc, an OEM Toyota part purchased at the parts counter comes with a one year warranty from the date of purchase. They have that posted in writing.

    But Toyota isn't blameless here. They don't have this separate battery warranty (1 yr vs 3 yr) posted anywhere public and that's just wrong; especially if it's intentional.
     
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  17. Tetra

    Tetra New Member

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    After finding the page with the notes I was taking while making calls, I can't make a whole lot out of the scratch now. If you put "Toyota" in google maps around Atlanta, all those that pop up are the one's I called. I also noticed something else in my notes...I had "12,000 mile warranty" written down a couple times too. Isn't the warranty supposed to be unlimited?

    I remember when I was talking about the warranty it was usually after being transferred to "service" (and not "parts"), so maybe they were not as up to date on the specs of the warranty.
     
  18. ericbecky

    ericbecky Hybrid Battery Hero

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    I like to think that dealer's aren't intentionally lying.
    There is simply a limit on knowlege they can recall from memory. We all have these limits.
    That's why sometimes it is better to look it up rather than to tell on memory. Also they are limited by whoever updates the paper copy of their manual. You can how easy it would be to misplace this one updated page from 2016.
     
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  19. Tetra

    Tetra New Member

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    True, and it sounded like this wasn't too common of an inquiry. They kept thinking I was talking about the 12v battery even after I said "hv" or "hybrid" battery. I was even quoted at "$208.34" for a hybrid battery.
     
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