Hybrid Battery Question

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Technical Discussion' started by Kelli Ann, May 3, 2018.

  1. Kelli Ann

    Kelli Ann Junior Member

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    Hello All,
    I've gone through some searches and battery conversations within our Site. I've seen some things that match my situation, but in the same thread my situation does not match. I have already changed out the 12V about 16 months ago. So here is what i'm seeing in my 2008 - 98,450 mile Prius.

    I've noticed in the past weeks, changes in the way the main battery is charging or not holding a charge. I live in Tampa Bay FL area and we are nice'ish here temperature wise. I go without the AC alot lately. If it is on it is for a bit midday. I'll look at the charge bars and I'll 4 or 5 blue. I start my ride and maybe hit a long red light and I'll watch the bars go down to the 2 or 3 purple. I get driving and it feels heavy, but after a mile or 2 all starts charging up again. I will go to the GREEN fully charged/ing. But if I go idle for any amount of time, it does go down. I have watched this for about 2 wks. Gas mileage has always been between 40 - 45 (I'm seeing this can be normal in hot flat lands.) Gas mileage has dropped to 34-36, this after doing the math on today's fill up.

    I bought it used just over 2 yrs ago and yes, bought a bumper to bumper warranty. I am getting no additional lights on the dashboard. Nothing staying on a bit longer than normal. I had a road check just 3 weeks ago, oil change and tire rotation as I'm driving to Northern AL the end of the month for a house sitting gig.

    Is this the sign of the Hybrid battery aging or dying? I'm under warranty, so this may get replaced. But I'd appreciate hearing from any of you all out there.

    Thank you in advance for hearing me out and sending your thoughts.
     
  2. paprius4030

    paprius4030 My first Prius

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    There's a independent Prius guy in the Tampa area that seems to have a good reputation. I'm sure somebody here will tell you who he is after your post has been on here awhile and more people read it.
     
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  3. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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    Fast cycling is a sign of a weak hv battery:(.

    But there are solutions out there:).

    I have a Prolong harness and share the Prolong equipment woth another member here which helps us both maintain our hv battery before it threw any codes;).

    Todd @ @TampaPrius.com owns Tampa Hybrids and is a great help to those interested in the Prius and it’s various facets :).

    Keep us posted (y).
     
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  4. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    Yup.
     
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  5. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    Most of these warranties sold by dealerships are for "normal" cars and don't cover hybrid components. Read the fine print carefully.

    GOOD LUCK!
     
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  6. Kelli Ann

    Kelli Ann Junior Member

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    Thank you for Todd's name and website, as I have heard of this guy.

    I haven't pulled codes, but will see if it is throwing any. I just filled up, the tank was alittle under half, but I put some medium (3.5 gal) and reg grade (2.5 gal) gas in and didn't use the AC. The charging system looks better. Did I read something that the AC can pull from the system, again is this a sign of the Hybrid weakening? I have appt at Clearwater Toyota Monday. I have only driven 14 miles since the fill up, but have been in the blue and green nothing lower than 5 bars and showing nearly 43 mpg. I will admit, been driving fairly conservatively. I still feels heavy to drive, almost dragging.

    I have the Easy Care warranty and was told it covers everything, but it did not cover the 12V, not sure why, but that was my error in draining that (in the first 6 months of ownership).

    Thank you again for any feedback. I wish I was more mechanically inclined, I just know what I have gone through with other cars, but this one is a bit different.
     
  7. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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    I’d give Todd a call before heading out to Clearwater Toyota ;).

    IMO these are the early signs of hv battery failure, so I would prepare for that reality. If there are no lights for warnings on the dash, the dealer may not be able to tell you anything :(.

    Good luck and keep us posted (y).
     
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  8. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Yes mine was doing the same thing. Your looking at stage 1 of hybrid battery death. I bought a hybrid battery charger and a year later it’s still doing ok.

    I live by you. You have to use the ac everyday. It’s hot and humid here. No ac on the hybrid battery is sucking in hot moist air. The hybrid battery has a fan that’s always on. Your circulating hot moist air over the battery.
    If you go for days not using the ac unit that’s a pretty good way to kill the ac system. Use it everyday. Keep the cabin cool and dry.

    You also need to keep a shade in the windshield every second your not in the car. It has a huge windshield and that cabin heat cooks the battery. You have to keep the back cloth package rack extended to keep the sun from directly hitting the back area where the hybrid battery lives.

    They will not replace a dying hybrid battery under warranty unless It has thrown failure codes. Your right on the line of factory warranty. Your
    Extra warranty will not cover that battery.
    It’s 8 years or 100000 miles for the factory hybrid warranty.

    So hopefully it blows up real soon.

    Be aware that many Prius tend to use engine oil. It is very important that you check the oil yourself regurly to see how much. The monkeys at the dealership Do not check the oil level before changing it. You could be eating a lot of oil And have no idea. Problem with that is you go on long trip with an oil eater You run the oil so low it turns on a check engine light. It gets towed in And has blown engine your warranty does not cover running the engine out of oil.
    It’s your reponsibility.
     
    #8 edthefox5, May 5, 2018
    Last edited: May 5, 2018
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  9. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Btw no lights on the dash no codes thrown. Your trip to Al and back will get you into 100000 miles and no more hybrid battery warranty.
    Last time I checked at Clearwater Toyota where I bought my 07 new they quoted me $4000 for new battery. I’m a year out.

    Just thought you should know neighbor.
     
    #9 edthefox5, May 5, 2018
    Last edited: May 5, 2018
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  10. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    Actually, 8 years and 100,000 miles here. 10 years and 150k miles in CARB states.

    Absolutely, go see Todd at Tampa Hybrids. He knows more about your car than Toyota and has better prices. And do it before your trip. It may save you an expensive tow. If nothing else, the car will run way better.
     
  11. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Thanks jerry it is I was thinking about carb. I fixed it.
     
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  12. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Yes Todd is worth the drive. It’s a hike from St Pete though.
     
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  13. paprius4030

    paprius4030 My first Prius

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    Just out of curiosity.......We moved from Pa. to Fl. Pa. was a CARB state correct? Is Fl. not a CARB state?
     
  14. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    FL is not a CARB state.
     
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  15. Kelli Ann

    Kelli Ann Junior Member

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    Thank you! I so appreciate this group.
    I bought the Easy Care and was told it covers about everything that makes the car run. Already covered was the Oil change, right wheel barrings issue (and it covered the alignment with that). Unfortunately, it was 4 years or 75K miles... so just under the 150K mark.

    I drove with the AC on yesterday and the charging meters were more the normal. And driving mpg was around 50 where the saved or avg area was now up to 41. I am so confused.

    I'm cancelling my Clearwater appt and am reaching out to Todd. If not for a need to get fixed, maybe some added information to help me learn more, more avg maintenance and such. I am doing 5000k oil changes also.

    Thank you ALL!
     
  16. Kelli Ann

    Kelli Ann Junior Member

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    I messed up - needing more coffee. Easy care covered a water pump, not an oil change. I know that is my responsibility.
     
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  17. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    that's a smart move kelli, my daughter has an '08 with similar mileage, and i would advise the same thing in your situation.
    you're fortunate to have tampa hybrids, expertise like that is few and far between.

    even if you need a battery eventually, it will be worth the investment. the 2008 is rock solid, and you should get at least another 100k without any major issues, although there is no guarantee.

    all the best!(y)
     
  18. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    You really need to find a good local mechanic. Majority of Prius repairs are just regular car stuff.
    Clearwater Toyota is $140 an hour labor. You to not want your oil changed there they will routinely overfill the hell out of your engine oil on a change and will use god awful vat oil.


    I bought my car new there. 11 years ago . They gave me some free oil changes. First time I tried them
    I was curious and after my car disappeared into th back of the building I went around to the back of the building and found my car. It was being changed by a guy who spoke no English. There was 3 guys. I tried asking him some ?? and all I got was his hands in the air. Filthy area and huge vats of cheap Dino crap oil.
    Got my car back drove it home and checked the oil and it was a quart overfilled. Dumped that out and never went back. They use pneumatic guns to fill the engine back up. Fed by those vats. Those guns are extremely inaccurate so they always pump more so to make sure the oil is not low. Your not checking it yourself so you have no idea.

    Prius engine takes exactly 3.5 quarts of oil with a new oil filter. Buy the factory oil filter from Clearwater Toyota is $4.25. You can buy a 5 quart jug of 5-30 Mobil 1 Synthetic oil from Walmart for $24.95.
    I pour out 1.5 quarts out of that jug and bring that jug and factory oil filter to my guy. It cannot be messed up.

    Over 2 jugs you almost have 3 oil changes. Good for 10000 miles a change. The oil your dealer is using
    Is dinosaur oil not synthetic.
     
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  19. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Easy Care extended warranty does not cover any hybrid components. Hybrid Battery is not covered.
     
  20. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    Ahh, the old dealership ploy "I was told"; usually by the F&I person spreading FUD while also making grand promises at closing when the customer just wants to be done and drive off in their new purchase. READ the fine print in your paperwork. There will be an exclusions section.
     
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