hybrid motor problems P0A90, warranty, Montreal Prius mechanic

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by wcyt, Dec 6, 2013.

  1. wcyt

    wcyt Junior Member

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    (FYI this is thread copy and pasted from a private conversation started Tue. 3 Dec. 2013 1h36AM)

    can anyone give a newbie some advice on serious hybrid motor problems and if they know any trustworthy Prius mechanics in Montreal, Quebec ?

    On Wed. 27 November 2013 in Montreal, I was driving back home with my 3 young kids in our Toyota Prius model 2008 with about 163000 km mileage, in about -5 degrees Celsius (23 degrees Farenheit) , and had stopped temporarily at a road sign. However, when I pushed the accelerator pedal to resume driving, all of a sudden the engine started giving intermittent whirling/growling noises like WHRRR, WHRRR, WHRRR, and the wheels would not rotate.

    At first I thought that I was stuck on an ice patch, but upon further review, I saw that there was no ice below the tires. I turned the car off completely and restarted it several times in a desperate attempt to reboot the car. Each time the lights on the dashboard and display came on but the problem persisted. There were several warning lights that came on but the ones I noticed most were: 1- the Master warning light (red triangle with ! ) and 2- the Hybrid system warning light (little orange car with ! in the middle) Sorry, no photos available. Luckily I was on a side road and the car managed to slowly crawl towards the sidewalk before grinding to a dead stop.

    I got the Prius towed to my regular mechanic who looked the car over and managed to get an OBD II code reading of P0A90. After verification of my car including the hybrid traction 12 volt battery which we just replaced this year in May 2013 with a new Optima yellow top 12 volt, it appeared that the problem seemed to be definitely the hybrid motor itself.

    I have searched through the Prius chat blogs and found some interesting threads on hybrid motor problems but have not yet been able to find any info on the DTC P0A90.

    Not being a specialist in hybrid motors, my regular mechanic told me to take the Prius to the Toyota dealership at Chasse Toyota, 819 Rachel Street East, Montreal, where I purchased the car second-hand to get a better diagnostic of the car problems. Although, my car is now with the dealership awaiting for a diagnostic since Friday (their client service sucks), I would love to know if you could recommend any trustworthy Prius mechanics in Montreal, Quebec.

    Also it says in my owner’s manual supplement that the Prius warranty for hybrid related components is 96 months or 160000 km. However, when I purchased the Prius as a used car from the dealership in September 2008, it already had 29000 km on it. Apart from the relatively high amount of mileage on the car (mainly from chauffeuring wife and 3 kids around the city) , we have kept the Prius in pretty good condition, and had just tuned- up the car with my regular mechanic a week before the breakdown. So from your experiences, is there any chance that the hybrid parts warranty will still be valid?

    Thanks in advance for any insight or advice, and I will update this post once I get the DTC and subcodes from the dealership.
     
  2. wcyt

    wcyt Junior Member

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    From bwilson4b, Tue. 3 Dec. 2013 2h43AM


    Sorry but I tend to work on the Prius we own, a 2010, ZVW30, and 2003, NHW11. I can not help other than to suggest calling these folks to see if they have any recommendations:
    Auto Careers Development Center - Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Repair Training

    GOOD LUCK!
    Bob Wilson
     
  3. wcyt

    wcyt Junior Member

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    From Patrick Wong Tue. 3 Dec. 2013 5h44AM

    1. It is likely that the transaxle has failed. You will need the three digit sub code behind P0A90 for further confirmation (see #4 below.)
    2. The transaxle is covered by the powertrain warranty which in the US is 5 years, 60K miles - not the hybrid system warranty.
    3. If your regular mechanic is competent to replace transmissions and transaxles on regular vehicles, I suggest you ask him whether he can install a used transaxle for you.
    4. See techinfo.toyota.com which is a subscription website, for official Toyota repair manual information including as much as you care to learn about DTC P0A90. As mentioned in #1 above, you need to get the three digit sub code behind P0A90 for more info about your car's problem. Good luck.

     
  4. wcyt

    wcyt Junior Member

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    From USnavystgc Tue. 3 Dec. 2013 9h46AM

    Yep, I agree with Patrick. The symptoms you describe sure do sound like a transaxle failure but, you do need to get the 3 digit subcode for more info.

    I don't know of any mechanics in the Montreal area. I hope it all works out for you.

     
  5. wcyt

    wcyt Junior Member

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    From wcyt Tue. 3 Dec. 2013 5h52 PM

    Hi everyone,

    Thanks Bob, Patrick and USanvystgc for your speedy feedback and insight on the possible transaxle failure.

    After 5 days of chasing after the Toyota dealership, I was finally informed this evening that they had no idea what the problem was and that they would need about 10 hours to remove either the transmission or hybrid motor just to determine what the problem was, at a cost of about 930- 1000 $CDN for only the diagnostic!

    Also, the dealership refused to provide me an estimate of how much more I might have to pay to actually fix the Prius, although a price of at least 3000$CDN was floated for a transmission replacement. Needless to say, the dealership confirmed that none of the warranties I had were of any good anymore.

    On top of all that, the dealership steadily refused to provide me with any of the diagnostic codes they got from the Prius saying that they would be useless to me!!

    After consulting with CAA (CanAutoAsso), I finally managed to find the only reputable independent garage in Montreal with experience with hybrids, Garage Autosatisfaction 7815 St-Hubert, telephone (514) 279-6588.

    The owner of Autosatisfaction (Real Potvin) was not impressed with the dealership and assured me that it would not cost me more than 100$ to perform a proper diagnostic of the Prius, and that his repair rates would definitely be cheaper than the dealership and probably more competent.

    So now I just have to find a way to get back my Prius from the clutches of the dealership without being charged for their useless services.

    Stay tuned ....

     
  6. wcyt

    wcyt Junior Member

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    From uart Wed. 4 Dec. 2013 3h33 AM
    Looking forward to hearing what the independent mechanic finds and the full error code readout. It definitely sounds like a failed HSD (transmission) at this stage though.

    Here's another thread about a transmission failure with grinding noises, with the same DTC P0A90 (and others). Transaxle Failure | PriusChat - The dealer sounds very unimpressive in steadfastly refusing to give you the codes. :(

    BTW. I know that you might have legitimate reasons to discuss this through the private message system. For example you may not want to publicly discuss the dealer shortcomings while they still have your car. Ultimately however, it would be a good idea get this discussion moved to one of the open gen2 forums, as it's resolution could be very useful to other owners. :)

     
  7. wcyt

    wcyt Junior Member

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    From Patrick Wong Wed. 4 Dec. 2013 9h13 AM
    I think you should expect to pay for at least one labor hour of time, but in return you should be able to receive the DTC and any associated three-digit sub codes that the dealer technician obtained from Toyota Techstream. Escalate to the dealership's service manager and general manager if necessary. Good luck.

     
  8. wcyt

    wcyt Junior Member

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    From wcyt Wed. 4 Dec. 2013 8h01 PM
    Well I managed to recover my Prius from the dealership for a "service" fee of about 90$ with no DTC codes (or ethics for that matter) and had it towed to the indy Autosatisfaction garage, who will need a few days to look it over. As Patrick suggested, I will send an email later on to complain and ask for Toyota Techstream DTC codes.

    I would be glad to transfer this thread to the open gen2 forums, but I don't know how (I thought all conversations were open). Where can I find these instructions on the site?

    Also what do you think about this Youtube video, whic I might try on my Prius: Gen 2 Prius into Diagnostic Mode - YouTube


    Merci beaucoup ;)

     
  9. wcyt

    wcyt Junior Member

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    From edthefox5 Wed. 4 Dec. 2013 9h10 PM
    Yes please just post this in the forum instead of private conversation. Go to the blue FORUM tab on top of page and click that and go to Gen 2 Maintenance section. Stop selecting start conversation. Thats for a private conversation.

    This YOUTUBE diagnostic won't tell you much. You can check the 12 volt battery and switches and things. Not going to help you much with your predicament.

    Its here:

    Weird stuff happening? MPGs dropping? Test The Battery | PriusChat

    What you need are the codes and code subsets.

     
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