No P0A80 warning. Should I replace my hybrid battery anyway?

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Erin Strand, Oct 6, 2020.

  1. Erin Strand

    Erin Strand Junior Member

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    My 2006 is going on 220,000 miles on the original battery. It gets about 42.7 MPG which is roughly the same as when I bought it in 2015 and I'm not seeing signs that the battery needs replacing but I'm not a car person.

    I'm considering replacing the hybrid battery with a refurbished one from GreenBean ($1450 with install) despite never having seen the red triangle of death or the P0A80 error code. I know that 220k is a lot, but I generally subscribe to the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" philosophy. The only reason I am considering replacing it now is that I am currently living in the San Francisco area where it is very cheap and easy to get the battery replaced and in about a month I will be moving to Kodiak, AK where it will be very difficult and expensive to replace the battery. Kodiak is an island and I called both mechanics and neither will install a hybrid battery. Anchorage is the closest place that definitely can do it and its a $600 ferry ride and 200 mile drive away.

    So my question is, is it possible that my battery still has a worthwhile amount of life left in it or given the mileage should I just replace it now to avoid potentially having to replace it in Kodiak.

    Any insight or advice is appreciated. Thanks!
     
  2. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    It's very possible that you might get lots more service from that original battery. But it's also very possible, at that age, that it could fail very soon. Where you're moving, that would be very inconvenient.

    However, GreenBean (and other refurbs) are just made up of other failed batteries that have had their failed modules replaced while the rest of the old modules are still getting ready to fail. Hopefully, they have had all the wiring inspected and spruced up and been balanced, but they are still full of old modules. You could be buying trouble with a refurb and there's enough trouble that comes for free that I wouldn't go out and buy it.

    In your situation, I would be just as concerned about taking the car as is to Kodiak. But I'd be equally concerned if it had a refurbished battery. I would seriously recommend a new battery. You want something dependable. There are hybrid specialists that can install new Toyota batteries for less than a Toyota dealership. Hopefully, there's one near you.
     
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  3. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    If you want the car to be as reliable as possible, get a NEW battery for $1600 on up. Refurbished/rebuilts are NOT new batteries. If the car dies early, you can always sell the battery to line of eager buyers that will stretch out the door. Also, your car will gain in value which is something usually not heard about on a 15 year old vehicle. ;)

    GOOD LUCK!
     
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  4. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    +1

    Love it, I'm stealing this line!
     
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  5. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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    I hear many stories of rehab batteries failing in one year plus or minus. Then sometimes there are problems getting the seller to do it again under their warranty.

    The reality is your battery without codes could be better than a refurbished replacement especially if the refurb came from a hot climate.

    Honestly, if I were going to such an isolated place, I would want a vehicle the local mechanics could fix. I doubt mpg is a big factor on an island with 50 miles of road from north to south. I bet an awd Rav4 would come in handy up there.

    43DD7805-6E4F-414C-A4B6-60E24E0AB793.jpeg
     
    #5 rjparker, Oct 6, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2020
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  6. strawbrad

    strawbrad http://minnesotahybridbatteries.com

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    Don't bring a 14 year old car with 220,00 miles that you cannot maintain yourself and the locals don't want repair to a remote Alaskan island.
     
  7. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    Yeah, on second thought, I think @rjparker and @strawbrad have the best advice. Get something the local mechanics can handle. That's what I did when I moved to a Caribbean island. (Plus I needed 4WD and diesel in that environment.) People asked what kind of mileage I got out of it and I said, "How would I know? I almost never get above 2nd gear." :ROFLMAO:

    PS We have friends who used to live on Kodiak. They're in their 80s now and still say they love it more than any of the other places they lived. (But I'm not sure their straws still reach the bottom of the bottle, if ya know what I mean. ;)
     
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  8. Erin Strand

    Erin Strand Junior Member

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    Okay I’m convinced on getting a new battery not a refurb. An AWD would be nice but the cost and hassle of getting a different car are not appealing and I love my Prius. Thanks everyone for your thoughts :)
     
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  9. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    You're welcome. I hope you have a great time in Alaska and no problems with the car while you're there. If you do have an issue, I'm sure someone here can help you sort it out.
     
  10. Moving Right Along

    Moving Right Along Active Member

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    Just keep in mind that unlike what everyone talks about with hybrids (all battery, all the time), there are a lot of things that can happen to a Prius with your age and mileage. They are generally reliable vehicles, but I wouldn’t take one somewhere they wouldn’t know how to fix one if something broke, unless you are an adept mechanic yourself.
     
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  11. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    Or get some tools and some books and start reimagining yourself as a hardy self-reliant Alaskan islander ready to show the local mechanics how it's done.

    If the battery goes while you're there, as long as you can get one shipped to you, the replacement really isn't too daunting a job. There are some hazards and you should have some protective equipment for them, but it is not a greasy or grimy under-the-car contortionist routine the way various other car repairs are. It's rather civilized.
     
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  12. strawbrad

    strawbrad http://minnesotahybridbatteries.com

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    How about starting a list of what you would bring with to Kodiak Island or take care of before going there to keep an old Prius running?

    Before you go.
    1. New HV Battery since the op has already decided to do so.
    2. Replace the inverter coolant pump.
    3. Spark plugs, air filter, and serpentine belt.
    4. Four snow tires.
    5. New Toyota (not aftermarket) 12 volt battery.

    Bring with.
    1. A Windows XP laptop with a VXDIAG code reader. (Don't go cheap with a Mini VCI)

    What else can anyone think of?

    A Prius can be a great winter car. I don't know how the climate of Kodiak compares to MN. When the Kodiak locals don't know if their puny little 12 volt batteries will start their cars you'll know that the 220V hybrid battery WILL start your Prius.
     
  13. Moving Right Along

    Moving Right Along Active Member

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    I’d recommend a catalytic converter anti-theft shield. I don’t know how thefts are on Kodiak Island, but in MN, they seem very common. And you don’t want to have to replace a $2000 part ($3000 with installation) if you don’t have to.
     
  14. SFO

    SFO Senior Member

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    Before you go.
    1. New HV Battery since the op has already decided to do so.
    2. Replace the inverter coolant pump.
    3. Spark plugs, air filter, and serpentine belt.
    4. Four snow tires.
    5. New Toyota (not aftermarket) 12 volt battery.

    Bring with.
    1. A Windows XP laptop with a VXDIAG code reader. (Don't go cheap with a Mini VCI)

    Check for any related dealer maintenance by running the VIN at : Track Your Service Records with Your Toyota Owners Account
    1. If the ATF is over 60k miles old, drain and fill the transaxle fluid with ATF-WS (or better), and especially if at 220k old.
    2. Replace and purge the two SLLC loops if needed as well.
    3. Clean the HV battery fan, just because.
    4. Check the brakes and lube the pins and related bits if needed.
    5. Consider installing a heated seat kit
    Since OP isn't going DIY, will ping @PriusCamper for additional options on installing a new OEM, or a new 3rd party aftermarket battery, or individually reconditioning the existing virgin modules for a final run before needing a new battery in the future.
     
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  15. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Looks like you revealed what side you're in the great Prius battery debate... Yikes!!
     
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