Hello from newb in London, HELP

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by dij, Aug 19, 2011.

  1. dij

    dij New Member

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    Hello every one.
    I have just recently purchased a Toyota Prius 1998 Japanese model.
    I was very happy with my purchase.
    It was driving fine and I was very happy with the fuel consumption etc,but recently a turtle warning light came on and now it dosent start upat all.

    I am hoping that someone can help me on here.
    I have had a dealer tell me that it will cost £3000 to fix,but I paid £1200 for the car.....doh.

    Can anyone tell me if the HV battery can be charged up?

    Also,what is the unit above the battery for,it says nimh battery charger on it.
    If I press the start button on it then I get a warning tone and the light goes on to Fault...???
    Is this not the charger for the HV battery?

    Unfortunately the writing is in Japanese and I do not know what it says.

    Please help me.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    The original Japanese only Prius 1997-2000 is similar looking to the official UK Prius 2000-2003 but that's where the similarity ends. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toyota_Prius_(XW10)

    The original Prius you have was almost a Japanese home market test bed for the Prius and wasn't quite as 'polished' as the later one released for worldwide distribution. I understand that the HV battery needed to be 'balanced' by the main Toyota dealer every service. This is done automatically by the Prius released worldwide and as such it is very unlikely any dealer outside Japan will have the equipment.

    I do believe there is a guy in the UK but can't find the details when I've just googled it now :(

    This website from New Zealand gives details of the issue which might help you;

    HEV Battery Problems in Prius
     
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  3. dij

    dij New Member

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    I realy appreciate your reply.
    It seams that my car may be just scrap.:(

    I would still like to know what the charger is in the boot..?

    Thanks again.
     
  4. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    I wouldn't just scrap it off just yet. Maybe try resetting the car as shown on that link - by disconnecting the 12v etc. You might also look at one of those scanners refered to in that New Zealand link?

    All I'd say is be very very careful if you mess about with the high voltage battery pack. It can kill. If you're not sure what you're doing then leave it alone. If you're an electrical engineer you might look at tinkering with it assuming you take suitable precautions.
     
  5. dij

    dij New Member

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    I realise that it is a dangerous job to mess with this battery,but I have some experience and I have a good friend who knows what he is doing also.

    At the moment I am trying to work out what to do with it.:confused:

    Is there any way of finding out what is the purpose of the battery charger that is in the boot?

    My guess is that it is used to charge the HV battery,but the instructions are in Japnese.
    I was hoping that someone on here could shed some light on it.

    It would be good if the battery can be charged whilst in the car.

    Your help is much appreciated.
     
  6. seilerts

    seilerts Battery Curmudgeon

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    Try reaching out to Peter Perkins. He rebuilds hv battery packs on Honda Insights. I believe that your Prius uses hv battery modules similar to that used in 2000-2006 Honda Insights.

    The Nimh charger is an emergency start, that upconverts the 12V battery to charge the HV battery pack.
     
  7. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    The newer Prius HSD system is one of the few hybrid systems that incorporated a HV battery cell balancing system. This why Honda is having so many issues with their batteries. If you get your car fixed your may be able to use a new product that is currently in production that allows your to charge and balance your pack at home. I would check out 99mpg.com for more info on their universal grid charger.

    Grid Charger - MIMA Honda Insight Modified Integrated Motor Assist
     
  8. seilerts

    seilerts Battery Curmudgeon

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    Ack, forgot to link to Peter's website

    Home
     
  9. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    :welcome:
    Hi dij - sorry to hear about your finding PriusChat the hard way. Maybe this will help. I suggest you contact a very knowledgeable / helpful member here on PriusChat who goes by the screen name ken1784. He's in Yokohama if I remember. Send him a message (and maybe scan/fax/email your japanese manual) and he may be able to translate your battery charger manual - or at least give you enough of a clue to move forward. Here's a link so you can contact him:
    http://priuschat.com/forums/private-messages/send-to/217/
    I wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't already know about issues with the Japan only - 1st Gen Prius, including the very best solution(s)
    good luck!
     
  10. dij

    dij New Member

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    Thank you for your reply.

    I have got someone onto the recharging of the battery once it is removed from the car,but I want to know more about the Nimh charger in the boot.

    When you say emergency charger,can I not use it now?I mean this is an emergency I suppose lol.;)
     
  11. dij

    dij New Member

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    Thanks

    I have messaged ken.

    Just to clarify,I do not have a manual,just writing on the charger in the boot,about 3 or 4 lines in Japanese.

    I would have thought that Toyota would have given you the oportunity to recharge the HV batterys without tremoving them,and if the 12volts can upscale then I would expect to have to connect an external power source to the battery leads.

    I dont understand why Toyota have made the car so that it cannot be used as a normal petrol car when the battery is low.

    Really appreciate all the replies guys.
     
  12. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    Because the HV battery is a totally integral part of the hybrid system. The engine will not run without the HV battery as this powers the electric motor to start the engine. This system enables the engine to fire on and off seamlessly when driving - which is necessary for the hybrid system to work as well as it does.

    There isn't a gear box in the traditional sense. The hybrid system is the gearbox AND the power/charge unit etc. It's all reliant on each part working together - in synergy.

    To complicate things further the original version you have isn't quite as flexible as the official, later versions.

    As others have said, without a working HV battery the car is scrap.
     
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