Not Using Car for Three Months

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by ajayre, Dec 13, 2018.

  1. ajayre

    ajayre Junior Member

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    Every time I leave my car for three weeks I have to mess around disconnecting the 12V battery. The worst part is when I come back after a 10h flight and I have to get in through the drivers door, commando crawl into the cargo area, mess around with the flooring and release the tailgate hatch, usually in the cold and the dark. I'm tired of it.

    Now I'm looking for better/easier options for an upcoming three month trip. Car will be parked in a public area. No access to external power.

    I found a solar trickle charger - http://www.amazon.co.uk/AA-5060114614185-Solar-Powered-Battery-Charger/dp/B00AC1LLQY - never considered one before because I never really thought they worked, but seems I might be wrong.

    My plan would be to connect the trickle charger to either the OBDII port or to the "battery" points under the hood AND also remove the dome fuse.

    Is this a good plan?

    My other idea was to install some kind of 12V battery quick disconnect that is accessible via the taillight access panel in the cargo area so I can still do the commando crawl but don't have to open the tailgate or remove lots of bits to get access to the 12V battery.

    Thanks!
     
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  2. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Where is your car parked, what sort of place. Is it locked private garage with access to wall socket power, open-air parking lot, somewhere in-between?
     
  3. ajayre

    ajayre Junior Member

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    Public area, driveway, no access to power.
     
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  4. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    There's a link to pdf owner's manual, in that Amazon listing. Shows amperage as 0.12 to 0.20. I guess the question would be if that's sufficient, assuming you're starting with a healthy battery, and have reasonably good daylight exposure. And also hows the item's build quality, utility. The reviews seem mostly positive. Someone reports having it on for a protracted time, and the battery came out ok.

    Hopefully some PC members with electrical smarts can comment.

    Addendum: the cables look pretty short, a little frustrating, but not insurmountable.
     
    #4 Mendel Leisk, Dec 13, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2018
  5. kens97uber171

    kens97uber171 Active Member

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    I tied into the battery, with a battery tender. There is a male female idiot proof connector on the end of that. That plugs into a car charger. I realize that you said you are not going to be someplace that has power but oftentimes those small 12 volt solar devices you stick in the windshield have the same type of connector. I connected it to the battery and fished it up through the right rear access port in the package area so when I'm not using it the end of the cable just tux in there and I close up the panel. you might look into something like that that would put the power directly to the battery it also gives you a convenient place to plug a charger in if you are someplace that has power or if you're doing some maintenance on the vehicle that requires the accessory to be turned on for an extended. Of time. We all know that the batteries don't last that long when you're doing a brake bleeding procedure or some other extended diagnostic that requires the power to be on but not in ready mode. Good luck ..have a great trip

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  6. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

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    On a Gen2, your main source of 12v discharge is the Smart Key system.
    So the first thing is to turn that SKS off under the steering wheel.
    I do not think we have too much feedback on whether or not that is enough to keep the battery alive for 3 months, but if your 12v is relatively good and it is well charged prior to storage, I would guess it would last. Keep in mind the Gen2 12v charges pretty slowly thru the car, so it can be challenging to keep the 12v charged full if you are doing shorter trips al the time.
     
  7. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    1) you need a new 12v battery

    2) get a jump pack

    3) there is a jump point under the hood, no need to crawl in back

    4) for long trips like 3 months, shut off the sks, or better, disconnect the 12v negative.

    put the jump pack on the point under the hood when you return to open the hatch and reconnect the 12v.
     
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  8. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    +1
    It certainly should last 3 weeks......IF it is fully charged going in.

    IF......you have a mechanical key for opening the door if necessary, the best/easiest/cheapest solution to your situation probably is a portable jump pack that could be connected to the jump points if necessary.

    Note: If your battery does go completely flat about twice, it should be replaced because half or more of it's useful life probably is gone.
     
  9. kens97uber171

    kens97uber171 Active Member

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    This was what I was talking about... Hope that helps. 20181213_112920.jpeg

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  10. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    He's currently preserving his battery's state-of-charge by disconnecting one lead (assume negative), avoiding the background drain. It's a good strategy, but with the Prius there's the unavoidable crawl thru to reconnect.

    He's also considering installing a breaker-style switch, at a more convenient location.

    Both good ideas, but one downside with both is the loss of all memories.
     
  11. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    a jump pack under the hood eliminates the crawl
     
  12. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Yeah a jump pack will get him going, but he's trying to avoid serious depletion of his battery, shortening it's life. A disconnected battery will have near-nil decline.
     
  13. TMR-JWAP

    TMR-JWAP Senior Member

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    The positive cable from the battery goes directly to the jump terminal under the hood. There are plenty of battery on/off switches available that could be wired into this line and positioned somewhere convenient in the engine compartment. All you would need to do is open the hood, flip the switch, and carry on. You could even mount it in the people compartment. Good anti-theft device also.

    Or...just disconnect the cable at the jump point and slip something over it to ensure it stays insulated.
     
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  14. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    that's why i put in line #4
     
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  15. Skibob

    Skibob Senior Member

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    The OP never said the battery went dead. I think they just do it so the battery does not go dead.
     
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  16. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Ok I gotcha: temporarily power the the car with the jumppack, then you'll be able to pop the hatch, reconnect the 12 volt, without the crawl..
     
  17. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    if the o/p needs to disconnect the battery for a 3 week trip, the o/p needs a new battery
     
  18. Skibob

    Skibob Senior Member

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    I don’t know if that one would work. You need one that can maintain an AGM battery. I believe they use a slightly higher voltage to maintain than a lead-acid battery.
     
  19. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Meh, debatable. How about, if he frequently doesn't disconnect the battery for 3 week trips, he'll need a new battery. :p
     
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  20. TMR-JWAP

    TMR-JWAP Senior Member

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    Something like this would be convenient....install in the ground cable in the trunk.

     
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