Prius and the car wash

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by James1964, Sep 16, 2018.

  1. James1964

    James1964 Member

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    Is it simply a given that if one goes through a car wash where one must leave the car ready, in neutral that there is a distinct possibility of seeing the red triangle that goes away once the car engages again? It's been noted a few times on PC and after freaking out, running a thorough battery test and scan(if OB2/Dr Prius can be designated as such), system is without codes and HV is functioning correctly. 12v is new but going to check that again too.

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  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    no, it depends on the health of both batteries and level of charge.

    don't go in with a low hybrid battery, and shut the a/c off.
     
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  3. James1964

    James1964 Member

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    Thanks, makes sense. So this would track back to either the HV and/or 12v batteries being challenged? They both are relatively new. Or is this maybe a hybrid idiosyncrasy?

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  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    both. it is a hybrid idiosyncrasy because the hybrid battery charges the 12v. nothing charges when you are in neutral, so you can have a low hybrid battery going too low, a bad 12v not getting charged, or a weak hybrid battery cell that goes poof.

    even with new batteries, i wouldn't go in with less than 5-6 bars on the battery icon.
     
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  5. davecook89t

    davecook89t Active Member

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    I always "Force-Charge" our Gen 2 before going into one of those types of car washes. (I have not found a way to Force Charge the Gen 4 and would be interested in finding out how to do it, if anyone knows).
     
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  6. James1964

    James1964 Member

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    Clear as mud, lol.
    It's challenging to make assumptions about the condition of these battery systems.

    What is your gold standard test for discovering those two: HV, 12v health and integrity of the HV in fact doing the 12v charging job?

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  7. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    there is a way to check the 12v charging on the mfd. i can't remember on gen2, but you should be able to find it through search.
    also, a free load test at an auto parts store is a good idea, and i like to check mine with a volt meter at the under hood jump point in the morning before starting anything.

    batteries are fussy though, always degrading. you can never be 100% sure except when new and not defective.
     
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  8. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    for the hv, you need an app like torque to see all the module voltages while under load when driving.
     
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  9. James1964

    James1964 Member

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    I did both torque and dr prius road tests and both reports were HV at 100%. I'm going to do as you say and get a voltmeter reading up at the 12v terminal in that forward fuse box aka jump point (which I never want to use).

    There is also that other on board 12v test via the ECU. I'll do both and compare. I want to establish a base point of confidence in this vehicle so as to eliminate the crises.

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  10. James1964

    James1964 Member

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    Thanks for your generous help bisco!

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  11. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    pleasure!
     
  12. James1964

    James1964 Member

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    One final ask: how do you force charge a G2?

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  13. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Dr. Prius shows that data as well... It's displayed better too...
     
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  14. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    never done it, but i think you hold the brake with your left foot and floor the gas
     
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  15. davecook89t

    davecook89t Active Member

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    That is correct.
     
  16. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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    I also use the parking brake as extra insurance ;).
     
  17. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Force charge all the time. Not necessary to floor it just step on brake firmly and while in D gently apply gas pedal till you see the charging arrow going into the battery on the mfd. old timers would call this power braking
    Except for the gentle pedal.

    From one purple bar till you see some blue takes about a minute in my 07.
     
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  18. James1964

    James1964 Member

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    Thank you!

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  19. Starship16

    Starship16 Senior Member

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    Thankfully, I am still young enough (65) and able enough to wash my car by hand.

    If I ever had to go to an automated car wash, I would choose one where you stay in the car, and the machine just sprays soap and rinses it off. (no roller brushes). Not the best kind of wash, just a quickie, but I can sit in the car in READY mode and not be concerned about batteries.

    I think that will be good enough when I'm 80. :LOL:

    (I feel like a wimp sometimes. My dad was still hand-washing his old Camry when he was 85! And still doing all the yard work himself. And all car maintenance. He never went to a car wash in his entire life! Or hired a gardener. Or hired anybody, period. He was one tough old Marine! He passed away at 87. Semper Fi, dad. (y))
     
    #19 Starship16, Sep 18, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2018
  20. dubit

    dubit Active Member

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    Good Lord how long are these automated car washes where you live? I'll go visit one occasionally if I'm short on time, but the entire process takes about 3 minutes! I can't believe that's enough time to drain a battery. I've spent longer than that at stop lights.
     
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