How much gas can I get in there?

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Fuel Economy' started by squishy506, Jan 4, 2011.

  1. squishy506

    squishy506 drives like granny

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    I have a question for you smart people. I am new here. Hello! I have a 2008 Prius that I adore, of course. My dad bought it in 2008 and died about a year later, so I inherited it. Besides my love of music, it's the best thing he's given me.

    I don't really know a lot about the technology of the car since I wasn't at the dealership when he bought it, but my boyfriend tells me there is a bladder in the tank. I read a couple of threads here, and it appears that's true.

    Now my question involves filling up. When I fill up, I do it when there's about 2 or 3 gallons left (I'm estimating), but the fuel pump will stop the automatic filling way before my tank is full. I've been able to get two gallons more than the pump actually thinks I need.

    This has caused a problem when others are around me at the gas station. One person thought my pump was broken because I kept cranking the handle on the pump, and then the other day when there was a line, this wretched old lady yelled out her window that I was taking too long. Her engine was idling, I might add. :eek:

    Am I doing the right thing by filling it this much? I don't want the bladder to burst, if that's possible. It's getting hard explaining to all these SUV people about the bladder. I think they just assume I don't know how to fill up a car.

    I travel 50 miles a day for work, and I fill up once every two weeks. I get almost 500 miles to the tank and am currently at 56.0 mpg. I'd like to keep my trips to the gas station infrequent, but I don't know if it's worth it for the weird looks I get from people.
     
  2. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    Squishy, how do you know how many gallons your tank holds at any given time? Due to the bladder system you should not be able to answer that question... :)

    Stop pumping at the first click and fill up when you reach 1-2 bars. This will save you from future issues.
     
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  3. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    Adding gas beyond when the tank thinks it is full, means the car treats that gas as pollution rather than fuel.

    It is routed to a charcoal canister intended for gasoline vapors, and over whelms it, leading to replacement.

    Topping Off
     
  4. dogfriend

    dogfriend Human - Animal Hybrid

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    Wonder what she does when a F250 with dual tanks is filling up in front of her? :madgrin:

    Don't get flustered by crazy people, they are everywhere. :rolleyes:
     
  5. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    The tank in your Gen II Prius has a gross capacity of 11.9 U.S. gallons. Gross, not net or usable. With the bladder you have about 10 gallons of usable capacity. Depending on the car, fuel pump nozzle, and temperature, you may have a bit more or less, but figure 10 gallons as a safe number.

    Because of this uncertainty, you never really know how many gallons of gas you have in the tank. It's a fool's game to try and cut it too close. If gas stations are easy to find, plan on filling up no later than at one pip on the gas gauge. If the pip starts flashing, get gas right now!

    At one pip, you should be able to add around 8 gallons of gas. There is no need to keep clicking on the filler nozzle, and in some cases it can cause damage. Fill until it clicks off and call it good. Another click isn't going to hurt if you insist, but don't do it repeatedly.

    The bladder creates some back pressure during refueling. This can fool the filler nozzle and cause it to click off early. If this happens, use the slowest filler setting. Sometimes lifting the handle or drawing it back an inch will help. In some cases you just have to move to a better pump.

    Hope this helps,

    Tom
     
  6. richard schumacher

    richard schumacher shortbus driver

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    You really don't want to make a habit of topping off. Overfilling increases hydrocarbon pollution. It can damage the vapor canister and valves in the fuel system and lead to replacement of the gas tank. Search for posts by Galaxee on the subject.
     
  7. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    Squishy; nice pic...interesting username, but anyway..

    answer to question; first click. dribble a bit to make an even dollar figure (for accounting purposes) and that is it.

    overfilling, not good.

    and WELCOME TO PRIUSCHAT
     
  8. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    It's all fun and games until your bladder burps and you have to spend the next 15min watching fuel pour out of the filler neck and down the side of your car. Not a very environmentally/health friendly situation.... :)
     
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  9. squishy506

    squishy506 drives like granny

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    My neighbor had a giant truck visitor outside idling for 30 minutes. I am so proud of myself for refraining from going outside to plug the exhaust pipe with a potato.

    It's a name I used to give my cats. Now I use it on my ferrets.


    I will stop being anal retentive about the gas. I never knew I could hurt the car. I pictured this rubber ball inside the car like the one Kramer filled with oil on Seinfeld. I wondered if it would expand until it touched the walls of the tank.
     
  10. booger

    booger New Member

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    that happened to me. I put the cap back on ASAP :D

    I hate the bladder-gas tank it's a PITA.
     
  11. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    http://priuschat.com/forums/gen-ii-prius-technical-discussion/30593-gas-bladder-exposed.html shows a tank damaged by overfilling. Galaxee's DH was a Toyota service tech at the time of the posting.
     
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  12. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    lets face it, stopping for gas is a major hassle!! that is why i am getting a Leaf!! (VIN # 258) so i will cut my trips to the gas station in half.

    but the beauty of having a Prius is that with the extra range, it allows you to get gas when its convenient for you. i dont overfill my tank but i have a 2010 which does not have the bladder so my fills are more consistent which allows me to run around on a blinking bar longer than most would dare to.

    on my last tank it blinked for 2-3 days or so, but i usually only drive about 20-30 miles a day and it was not convenient for me to get gas (i only goto Costco and although i have 4 within 20 miles of me along with one i pass every day on my way to work, sometimes turning is just too inconvenient) at the time.

    but in your car, the bladder makes it hard to get a consistent volume in and overfilling will clog your vapor recovery canister which will cause your fuel pump to work harder and eventually could potentially (too many -lly's means it "might" not happen but...) lower the lifecycle of the fuel delivery system
     
  13. squishy506

    squishy506 drives like granny

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    My trick was to keep checking to see if there was any gas visible where you pump. (Sorry, I don't know a lot of auto terms). And if the gas descended, I was safe. If it stayed hovered over the insertion hole (giggle) then I knew to stop pumping.
     
  14. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    you would only be able to see the gas if you had filled up the filler tube. the vapor recovery canister is halfway up the vent tube which is parallel to the filler tube. that would mean you have gone too far.
     
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  15. dogfriend

    dogfriend Human - Animal Hybrid

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    Yes, if you see liquid fuel you went too far. Just let the pump shut off on its own, maybe add a little more to round up, call it good.
     
  16. kaptaink

    kaptaink Junior Member

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    Good advice. I just let it click off then round up to the next 0 cents. This will avoid check engine lights. The most gas I ever put in was about 9.5 gallons on a warm summer day and with the last dot flashing.:rolleyes:
     
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