Need to replace hybrid battery

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Stefanovich, Sep 29, 2020.

  1. Stefanovich

    Stefanovich New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2020
    14
    9
    0
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    II
    all.

    Yesterday a red triangle, ABS, and (!) warnings came up on the dash. Upon taking it to a mechanic, they told me the hybrid battery needs to be replaced. They quoted me around $2600 to do the job, parts and labor.

    Oh yeah, a bit of info about the Prius. I bought it third-party a few months back for $3100, and it had 171k miles on it. The mechanic I took it to for an inspection said it was in good condition, and didn't get any error codes.

    Should I pay the whole @2600 to have them replace the battery? Or should I try and get a refurbished battery for less? There is always the route of buying a battery and replacing it myself, but I am not mechanically inclined (though I could make do). I have also heard that Toyota has a hybrid battery exchange/recycle program, where they will exchange your battery for a new one which would cost less than a simple replacement. Does anyone know anything about that?

    I am a bit worried, because I am not made of money, and I don't want this Prius to become a money sink. The battery replacement is almost as much as I paid for the Prius itself.
     
  2. SFO

    SFO Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2017
    3,303
    3,374
    0
    Location:
    Northern California
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    In another thread (linked above), you mentioned having a vehicle for 2 years, and in this thread it's 3 months, how many do you own?
    That subjective 'good will' option may or not have applied to your situation, and figuratively speaking that ship generally sails after the manufactures warranty expires. Best to get a new HV battery ($1600+) and install it yourself, saving $1000. Buying a new HV battery will give you many years(10+) of trouble free usage, minus any other issues that may arise. How many miles per year do you drive?

    Does it use or burn any engine oil, do you check it often?

    Maybe @PriusCamper could help install either of the two (2) available new HV battery products, or possibly a used/wrecked/rebuilt as well.

    If the HV battery is giving you pause, feel blessed that you're in Oregon and can install an aftermarket catalytic if someone borrows yours.
     
  3. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2016
    11,410
    10,988
    0
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Unless the mechanic is buying the battery from a Toyota dealer, he is putting in a used refurbished (repaired with used parts) battery.

    If the Hybrid Battery really needs to be replaced, the least expensive option would be for your mechanic to find a NiMH pack frim a low mileage junked Prius and put those modules into your pack. The only pther option is to have the dealer put in a new battery pack. Toyota pays for your old pack to recycle the parts,
     
  4. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    4,570
    1,793
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    I'm a little under 2 hours North of you... I'll soon be passing through on my way to Bend, Oregon to stock up on used Hybrid battery parts, so I could check it out...

    The good news is that the primary error code they read is POA80 "Replace Hybrid Battery" is a marketing gimmick to rip people off because when these cars were first made hybrid batteries cost $4K to replace, but now they're only $1600....

    The secret that many don't know is that there's actually subcodes to POA80 that give you sense of what specifically is wrong and I've turned that $2600 "Replace Hybrid Battery" quote into a 5 minute repair a couple times. Most commonly it's a $50 part and it's very rare is that the only option is replacing the whole pack. In general you're likely looking at work in $300-$500 range if I do it... But until I know more details I can't say for certain.

    Also if you replace the whole pack with new, you get a decade of not worrying about it. Other less expensive options may come back as more problem in a few years or less.
     
    kenoarto and SFO like this.
  5. Stefanovich

    Stefanovich New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2020
    14
    9
    0
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    II
    The one I mentioned before that I had for two years got totaled. This is another gen 2. Sorry for the confusion.
    Did some research on the "good will" after posting. Yeah, that's not gonna happen. Too far out of warranty. Right now I need a new hybrid battery, but I don't know if it's better to buy a Toyota OEM, an aftermarket battery, or just replace individual cells.
    I checked the error codes and I'm getting P3000 and P0A80. Looking a bit further into the problem, battery blocks 1 and 2 are reading as lower than the rest. Block 2 is the main issue, at 13.84. Battery block 1 is a bit low, at 14.85. The rest are steady at an average of 15.15.

    Right now I have a few options I'm looking at. Either replace the individual modules, buy an OEM battery, an aftermarket battery like, or sell the darn thing to offset the cost of another vehicle. Because $1600+ is an awfully high price, and if I didn't want to do it myself the labor costs would probably be another $700.
     
    SFO likes this.
  6. ChrisDG

    ChrisDG New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2020
    2
    0
    1
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    I had a brand new Toyota battery installed in my 2006 from Hometown Hybrids.

    The guy came to me and replaced it in the street in front of my nephew's house in about 45 minutes. Had to take out the entire interior in the rear of the car.
     
  7. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2016
    11,410
    10,988
    0
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Unless you find a good hybrid mechanic with a low mileage pack from a wrecked Prius you only real option for a reliable vehicle is a new Toyota battery pack. If the dealer installs it there is a : year warranty instead of the 2 year warranty if purchased as a part.
     
  8. Jmack111

    Jmack111 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2009
    370
    76
    0
    Location:
    Tacoma wa
    Vehicle:
    2004 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Am in tacoma I've rebuild 4 so far normally only 2 to 4 cell are bad

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  9. Stefanovich

    Stefanovich New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2020
    14
    9
    0
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    II
    To anyone reading this who has used the DIY newpriusbatteries kit, how does it compare it to a Toyota OEM battery? The grey brick?
     
  10. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    4,570
    1,793
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Let me know if you need help... One advantage of brand new OEM for $1600 is you'll get a decade or more out of that pack without issue and you can use that pack in a Gen3 if you upgrade to a newer Prius. Installing the pack takes 2 hours and it's a very easy job once you've have experience doing it. Alternatively, I could hook you up with a loaner pack and rebuild your existing pack which will be good for a few more years or less with total cost in the $300-$500 range.
     
  11. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    4,570
    1,793
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Hi Jmack111, I'm 1/2 hour south of you... Get in touch if you'd like to be involved with our local group of three who enjoy working on Honda & Prius hybrids... We share lots of resources, supplies, etc.
     
    SFO likes this.
  12. Stefanovich

    Stefanovich New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2020
    14
    9
    0
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    II
    Possibly. Could you give me a few more details? I'm guessing "rebuilding" it involves swapping out the bad modules for good ones? What do you mean by 'loaner pack?' As in, a temporary battery while you fix the one I got? Or is it something different?
     
    SFO likes this.
  13. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    4,570
    1,793
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Yes, a loaner pack means an hour after I stop by you have a functional car again and I take your pack home to work on it. I've found that I can spend more time on a pack and do higher quality work if the person isn't waiting on getting their car back. As for the work:

    Each module is load tested and self discharge tested and a spread sheet of that data is built for future reference... The modules are also reconditioned, or deep cycled, which means they're slowly discharged to lower and lower voltages and then slowly recharged for a total of three times. This restores lost battery capacity from sometimes as low 50% back up to 96%.

    And because I monitor each module as they discharge, I can spot modules that are weakening and discharging too fast. I also use a thermal camera to find modules with overheating issues when they're recharging. And then another load test and self-discharge test when it's all done. Then I replace the bad modules, as well as put on new nuts, new bus bars and often a new voltage sensing harness and then I test it in my car after running it overnight on Prolong charge and balance. And if it runs well with no issues after some miles are put on it, it's ready for you.

    My price is low because I'm not offering warranties of 1 to 3 years like most re-builders who charge twice as much as me and some of them don't do half the steps I do. But if or when battery fails again I'll take responsibility for it and discount future modules replaced so cost of failed repair will likely be in just the $100-$200 range.

    Key point, I do this as a hobby for friends and family and sometimes it's a good way to make a little money on the side, but mostly I enjoy keeping people's high MPG cars running to do my part for the climate issues we face. I also like it when my work makes 'em never go back to a Toyota Stealership ever again... I'm not ambitious about making lots of money or hustling people. Just honest work based on the health of your pack. If your pack is not as healthy as the loaner pack and needs too much work, we can work out a similar deal for that as well.
     
    #13 PriusCamper, Oct 2, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2020
  14. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2016
    11,410
    10,988
    0
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    I understand they function very well and there have been no warranty claims in over 2 years. I understand @2k1Toaster has them backordered now though.
    When Green Bean heard the warranty claim percentage they abruptly left the discussion thread and the forum.
     
  15. Stefanovich

    Stefanovich New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2020
    14
    9
    0
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    II
    Hm. And to think I was considering a Green Bean refurbishment. Guess Imma nix that idea. @2k1Toaster could you perhaps guesstimate how long it might take to get a battery with the backlog? Not asking for hard numbers here, I know you're dependent on other suppliers. But maybe a general idea? Thanks in advance.

    Hm. It'll take a bit of consideration before I decide on either option. I'll PM you should I want to get a rebuild. Either way, thanks for the offer. Used Prius battery packs go on ebay for around $450 so it might help offset the costs of a new battery.

    Oh, here's part of the readout I got from the mechanic. The one that lists the battery blocks, if it helps any.
     

    Attached Files:

  16. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    4,570
    1,793
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    From the looks of the printout you simply could swap the bad module in block #2 for $30 if you or a friend have basic mechanical skills you could do this in a day and skip all the extra stuff and you might get lucky and get a year or more of trouble free driving. Many of the people I work with do it this way... It's definitely the best way to not spend money and can try your luck, but for sure the least reliable way.
     
    2004priusgal and Stefanovich like this.
  17. kenoarto

    kenoarto Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2006
    1,373
    355
    0
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Model:
    II
    Why would anyone wait for an experimental 2k battery when genuine Toyota batteries can be found for $1600?
    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  18. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2016
    11,410
    10,988
    0
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    The @2k1Toaster battery is far from experimental. It has been used successfully for many years with zero failures.
    Perhaps the Toyota battery is not shipped to your door for $1600 with no core charge.
     
    2k1Toaster likes this.
  19. kenoarto

    kenoarto Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2006
    1,373
    355
    0
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Model:
    II
    2 years of sales is not "many". 2 years is still an experiment when compared to genuine Toyota batteries that have been proven for 20 years. And since the price is the same and 2k is backordered, why risk it?
    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  20. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2016
    11,410
    10,988
    0
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Show me where you can get it delivered with no core charge for $1600. It is a figment of your imagination.
     
    #20 Prodigyplace, Oct 4, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2020
    2k1Toaster and Raytheeagle like this.
Loading...