Just Started Prolong Reconditioning

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by Ds001001, Dec 30, 2020.

  1. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    My.car: 2007 with 165k miles

    I’ve ran dr Prius life expectancy test a few times and got 3 in the 70s and one 89. I live in Tahoe and while running the test starting with engine coolant temp at 80c and air temp in 30s the ice started up right near the end on a couple of those due to coolant temp getting too cold I believe. By the time I switched back to scan gauge I’m guessing water pump had already mixed with the thermos so I couldn’t diagnose exactly why ice started up.

    After consulting with the doctor, I’m going with the battery is at least 70% ok so I bought the prolong kit and do the $1500 of maintenance I need instead of getting new car.

    With that background , how many charge discharge cycles would you do and to what level? After reading the 63 page 1000 post thread I’m leaning to doing two discharges to 134v since the car is running normally and the doctor confirms it.

    started first charge 5:30 pm 230V

    thanks for any input !
     
  2. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    You can sometimes find used Prolong systems on Craig's list for a lower price... Let me know if you need any help as I drive down the I-5 corridor in Oregon often, or at least when there's not a Pandemic.

    Usually the first thing I do is check the orange plug in the Hyrbid Battery ECU for corrosion. If it's not that bad and you can clean it up then you can do the Prolong system without pulling the pack. But if that plugs shows lots of corrosion you're better off pulling the pack and replacing that part and putting new nuts and cleaner bus bars on the pack.

    As for discharge rates, Prolong has been boosting those numbers of late as it's less riskier for packs with health issues. So I'd reccomend whatever their latest numbers are in their online manual.

    What's the other "$1500 of work" that your Prius needs?
     
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  3. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    After one hour the pack is at 240v, I saw it go up to 241 then back to 240.

    That doesn’t seem normal going 230v to 240v in an hour, is it ok to do this with air temp 37 degrees ? Has anyone done it in cold weather ?


    $1500 guesstimate for tires, brakes, change the three non oil fluids, last tire rotation at Costco they said hub assembly is rusted out needs replaced, 3 way valve throws p1221 every 10 or so starts. I just moved to Tahoe , will probably get quote from lucious garage in San Francisco and go down once COVID is hopefully vaccined away by spring
     
  4. SFO

    SFO Senior Member

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    The cold temps are a good thing, and won't hurt your charging/balancing efforts at all.

    Would stay on with the top balance until the morning or afternoon, the voltage may swing a few volts up and down as it balances. Check the voltage again first thing in the morning. It sounds like you might have an older version of the HA prolong discharger firmware, since then there was a voltage increase on the discharge limits.

    Here is a link, with the voltage chart at the bottom : Prolong Battery Discharger User Guide | Hybrid Automotive

    I would do a minimum of two (2) cycles, and more if possible. Not sure if going below 134v is needed at this time.

    What kind of mpg were you getting on average?
     
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  5. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    Before it got cold I was averaging 45-46 range driving in mountains. On flatland in Oregon last summer still got in high 40s/low 50s

    since it’s gotten cold and I’m driving up mount rose highway, roughly 10% grade for 10 miles , everyday to ski. last two tanks have been upper 30s, including dr Prius app cycles. This is main reason for wanting to do the recondition , even when the car was new winter tanks here were in the 42-43 range. I can barely get above 40 mph holding ice at 3500 rpm on the steepest sections. Hoping rebalancing cells will improve that a little bit so all the range rovers don’t want to plow me over

    8:00 pack reading 243

    here are a couple screen shots of battery monitor at high charge and discharge, not sure if that tells anything good or bad
    CAF3E829-E7D5-4FC8-BD3B-B10A5C17F6F3.png 3BE04867-ED88-4E61-896E-3F01EF6B42C5.png
     
  6. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    I have done extensive prolonging.

    First discharge should be down to 85 volts. Then put it on charge for at least 35 hours.
    If there’s any meat left on that bone that one discharge should hold you for at least 5 months you can do remedial full charges every couple of months.

    You have 2 things against you though that is time and miles on the car.
    The sooner rejuvenating the better. The other thing is it lives a very hard life going up big hills that hammers the hybrid battery. keep an eye on the battery level as you go up the hill make sure the battery has a decent charge on it if not pull over and force charge it.If the battery goes to purple bar gong up the hill it’s not contributing anything and th3 engine will be screaming. Slow down.

    Stop then and do a forced charge with the car in drive push down on the brake pedal while you simultaneously push on the gas pedal till the engine starts and you see the charging arrow on the mfd flowing to the battery. Don’t floor it just
    give it enough gas to start this procedure. This way you can get at least 3 blue bars in the battery before going up the hill if not the engine will be screaming trying to propel the car and charge the battery. That is really hard on the engine and the inverter fluid as the inverter will get very hot and the trans even hotter.
    I have forced charged my car for years as the battery got worse and worse.
    At the light usually.
    I extended my battery 3 years prolonging till I recently bought a new NPB battery system. But and this is the big but I don’t see any hills.Hills and a G2 don’t do well it’s a very under powered car and with a soft battery it’s a disaster.

    In 3 years only did 3 discharges but many full charges. The battery likes full charges.

    good luck.
     
  7. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    @edthefox5 I’m wondering what background is on recommending one to 85v? My thinking is given that dr Prius app says 70% or better and car is performing normally and there is a risk to damage working cells by going deeper why would I go that far ? If I do 134v twice I get ~90% of the benefit with little risk. My goal is to avoid battery failure due to out of balance cells taking the pack down, not to squeeze every percent of original efficiency back.

    Regarding pack life and winter mountain driving, probably 90,000 of my miles are winter mountain driving with very rare driving over 90 degrees in summer. Not many people who live in areas that get 300” of snow a year solely drive a Prius. Is it possible that cycling the battery more often in cold weather has kept memory effect down with better life remaining compared to someone who stays in a more narrow range close to 60% and drives daily in hot summers?

    On the idea to force charge, if we’re trying to avoid cycles and high draw/charges that adds another cycle?Besides oil burn the ice is pretty bullet proof, is driving 3000-3500 rpm really bad for it ? I’ve been doing 3000 mile OCIs with Mobil 1 full since first change. Brakes are cheaper than batteries so I drive as much as I can in N to avoid “full battery going downhill, I must spin ice 5000 rpm to burn off charge” mode while having accessories on drawing around 7amps so I usually arrive home with soc in upper 70s.


    10, 11, 12: pack was at 245v steady
    5 am: flickering between 246/247v the minute I watched it
     
  8. Moving Right Along

    Moving Right Along Active Member

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    Your battery had it easier that it was never in high heat, but also had it harder from the constant mountain travel. Everything counts, and after 13 years it’s ready to be done. 30% battery wear is industry standard for end of life. It will probably last another year or two, maybe longer, but it will get considerably worse from a power perspective when going over those mountains. And in addition, you have the $1500 worth of other car maintenance that needs to be done. I’m a bit of a skeptic on the long-term effectiveness of Prolong reconditioning and instead of spending all that time charging and discharging the battery, I think it would be better to start saving up for the additional $1600+ of expenses for purchasing a new battery from New Prius Batteries (2kToaster’s company) or start thinking about selling the car and buying something else.
     
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  9. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    @Moving Right Along agree, from reading all the info on it , I wouldn’t think the prolong process will significantly extend the life of an individual cell, just that it will perform better until it’s life is over and an out of balance cell won’t adversely affect other cells in the pack

    I’ve been trying for a week to buy a used Bolt. If that works out the Prius use will be reduced to snow days and long trips so I think it will be a good decision.

    With the dr Prius app and the kit I’ll be able to monitor capacity and then sell it a month or two before it gets to the about to die point.

    7 am it was at 247v
    9 am 248v
     
  10. SFO

    SFO Senior Member

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    Looking good. Once it sticks to a set voltage for a 4-6 hours then you can start discharging.

    Will you be using the Prolong Battery Discharger?
     
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  11. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    @SFO yes, I got the deluxe one, I’ll press the button and go take a nap.

    11:00 am still 248v, looks like I’ll be able to start/finish first discharge and start next charge today !
     
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  12. SFO

    SFO Senior Member

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    Watch closely, as you may notice additional voltage fluctuation in the next hours, and be prepared for a 24+ more initial top charge.

    Though taking it off a bit early isn't a bad thing either, if that works best for your timing going forward.
     
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  13. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    Given timing it looks like tomorrow night will be dead time in the schedule as I wouldn’t want to start discharge then go to sleep. I’m thinking I’ll let this first charge go to like 5 or 6 today then discharge will be done before midnight

    Also, a big storm (multiple feet lake level) is on the extended forecast so I may need to make a supplies run before starting discharge 2 (with a third top off charge after driving)
     
  14. dolj

    dolj Senior Member

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    While it is true brakes are cheaper than batteries, why do you want to avoid all green bars (which is only ~80% SoC)? You miss the maximum opportunity of doing what the Prius is good at.

    Toyota designed provision for going down steep downhills by giving the the "B" position on the "gear" selector. This allows for greater engine braking to offset the lower regen braking and therefore the lower current) going into the HV (hybrid vehicle) battery. This, in essence, means it takes longer to fill the battery, and you also avoid riding the hydraulic brakes. I would only use "B" where a long descent filled the HV battery before I got to the bottom. In all other cases, I would just press a bit on the brake pedal to increase regen braking force. Once the battery is at ~80% SoC (all green bars) the car will undergo a second reconfiguration to replace all regen with engine braking to again save "riding" the hydraulic brakes.

    It seems to me you're overthinking it.


    On the issue of the discharge points, you can forego the final discharge to 84V but I would consider doing the second discharge to 101V though. These are the revised set points and are currently the ones advised by HA. (Initially, the discharge points were 134V, 84V, and 17V.) You will get about 85% benefit doing only 2 charge/discharge cycles followed by a last full charge.

    If you want to increase the benefit you could do a third charge/discharge by repeating to 101V (rather than going down to 84V) before the final full charge. Benefit vs time is the more the consideration rather than risk of damage at these voltages, i. e. down to a minimum of 101V.

    Finally, don't expect to see immediate changes from doing the reconditioning. It takes 2 - 4 weeks for the change in capacity of the HV Battery to bed in and the ECU to relearn to use the additional capacity.
     
    #14 dolj, Dec 31, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2021
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  15. mr_guy_mann

    mr_guy_mann Active Member

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    I would think that Prolong should help some. You could hit the "record" button and log all the battery data for a test drive and download it to view in Office. FYI on full throttle accel it can go up to about 160 amps discharge, then on heavy braking it can hit 80 or 90 amps charge.

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  16. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    I didn’t say I was avoiding using regen to get to 80%, I avoid “ecu spins engine at 5000+ rpm because the battery is full” mode. That is one of the biggest contributors to engine wear that results in the burning oil majority of us have. I plan my route choosing between coasting in d / braking/neutral/ev mode home from the ski hill so I finish the drive close to 80%. As I stated I have 10 mile 10% grade which if I used B mode all the time I would’ve had a blown head gasket several years ago. Given engine wear from it, B mode should only be used in snow/ice conditions to control speed to limit braking.


    I switched to discharge 1 about 4 pm , pack voltage went down to 247v around 1pm and stayed steady for about three hours, also that was 7 hours after first 247v reading.

    last check of pack discharge it was at 198v after 5 hours

    happy new year !
     
  17. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    the iOS version of dr Prius app doesn’t log results and I don’t have an android device, from the App Store info for other apps I can’t tell if they have what I’m looking for to purchase. Do you know if any iOS ones have ability to make your own dashboard with which readings you want to monitor as well as log results ?
     
  18. SFO

    SFO Senior Member

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    Not sure which gen iOS version or gen hardware you're working with, but have you thought about sideloading "UTM" and then emulating a droid OS so that you can run Hybrid Assistant and the sister app Hybrid Reporter?
     
  19. Ds001001

    Ds001001 Junior Member

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    My scan gauge has everything I watch when I’m driving, just have to switch to the Bluetooth adaptor to do the dr Prius app. If it gets more of an inconvenience I can find a used android device.

    To clear up my understanding, when the discharge cycle hits the target voltage say 134v, it can’t tell what the voltage of individual cells are cells are and it’s stopping based on the entire pack voltage ? So in the 168 cells, you’d have a range of like .75 to .85 that adds up to 134 ? Then on the next cycle the ones that made it down to .85 on the first discharge would get drawn lower because the rest of the pack wouldn’t add up to 134v when that cell is at .85 again ?

    2:30 I’m at 236v on second charge , moving right along !

    Car is reassembled after dropping two bolts into the abyss, luckily ace hardware is four blocks away :)
     
  20. SFO

    SFO Senior Member

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    For head ups display I've only used Torque. For logging and graphing, I've heard that Hybrid Reporter/Assistant is quite useful.
    This is correct.

    Maybe someone with more knowledge about grid charging can comment on the other questions ( is @jeff652 back in the saddle? ) :
     
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