Prius annoyances

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by Zed Ruhlen, Jun 13, 2019.

  1. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    In order to save money by only needing one switch for US and Canadian markets, GM has petitioned the NHSTA to make DRLs mandatory in the US. The response has been no on the research being inconclusive on whether it helps. I think a country's latitude plays a part. Further north and south, and you have more driving during low lighting of sunset and sunrise.
    I knew dash lights out meant that the rear lights weren't on, but just that the culprit was a blown fuse. All the cars with DRLs I've owned also had auto lights, so I had assumed all DRL cars did. I thought the low beams were on at half power for DRL use, so shouldn't that have clued people in to them just being on at night?

    I have the DRLs off in my Camry so the lights aren't draining the battery when I shut down at long lights. I do manually turn the headlights on for rain and fog as it is a low vis silver.
     
  2. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    I think with the cars with constantly illuminated dashes the (headlights off) cues aren't as obvious anymore.

    I was coming home from picking up a jar of spaghetti sauce last night, happened to stop beside a lady with just the DRL's, no tail lights. I rolled down the passenger window (her window was right down suprising, it being dark, rain threatening), and called over, something along the lines of "you've only got the daytime running lights on".

    Looked at me but no reaction. I tried a couple of other variations, last one being "You've__Got__No_Lights". Nope, not a clue. Off she went.
     
    #182 Mendel Leisk, Nov 18, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2019
  3. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    None that I've ever heard. There are still new car models without DRLs, which would be problematic in DRL states.
    Your point seemed to be based on replacement cost, as if the LEDs are like incandescent lamps in having a limited operating life shorter than the vehicle's life. But that is not true.
    The Wikipedia DRL page has it different:

    "Shortly after Canada mandated DRLs, General Motors, interested in reducing the build variations of cars for the North American market, petitioned the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in 1990 to permit (but not require) US vehicles to be equipped with DRLs like those in Canada. NHTSA objected on grounds of the potential for high-intensity DRLs to create problems with glare and turn signal masking, and issued a proposed rule in 1991 that specified a maximum intensity of 2,600 cd. Industry and safety watchdogs reacted to the proposed rule, and eventually the glare objections were set aside and most of the same types of DRLs allowed in Canada were permitted but not required effective with the 1995 model year."
     
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  4. mister2cool

    mister2cool Junior Member

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    DRL's are getting brighter and more and more often I see people driving at night with nothing but their DRL lights and completely unaware.
     
  5. Prius Maximus

    Prius Maximus Senior Member

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    I tend to run DRLs only, because I've survived two cars being totaled by rear-ended, and I want to make sure people behind me know my brake lights are on when I brake. But I never wait until actual sunset to turn the proper headlights on. I see many cars with only DRLs or no lights at all well after sunset, and/or in the rain. On the other side of the coin, too many people are driving with high beams, and a flash does not get them to turn them off.

    These newer LEDs are awfully bright, and blinding, and the blindspot doesn't fade. Of course, that could be due to me getting older. :whistle:
     
  6. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    This is a point in favor of using separate unpatterned DRLs (such as on 2012-15 Gen3s), instead of standard headights at reduced intensity. This non-headlight style, with its comparatively very rotten road illumination, is much less likely to confuse drivers into thinking that their headlights are on.

    Though such confusion is still not impossible. E.g. a certain senior citizen member here several years who posted only about her terrible headlights, which several of us suggested where likely just her DRLs. She never followed through with our requested feedback for more details to verify the problem.
    The human eye-brain combination has a logarithmic-like response to brightness. Because of that, half brightness just isn't enough difference to clue in many folks to notice the difference or absence.

    I've experienced rides with numerous other drivers with headlight problems (e.g. severely mis-aimed, or clouded plastic lens scattering most of the light away from the proper pattern) causing much greater forward reductions than just 50%, and they didn't notice the problem!
     
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  7. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    GM petitioned them to require the lights in 2001.
    Federal Register :: Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 108; Lamp, Reflective Devices and Associated Equipment

    I came across that on a Sonic board, in a thread on how to modify the switch so you didn't have to turn the DRLs off every time you started the car. There is a spring that flicks the switch back to DRL/auto after turning to off. Presumably, Canadian models don't have the off option.
     
  8. mister2cool

    mister2cool Junior Member

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    LED do last much longer than incandescent but they still have limited life, and they do lose brightness continuously. I have many LED lamps at home that have become noticeably dimmer after 3-4 years. It was relatively easy and inexpensive to replace an incandescent bulb every year, not so much for LED's. Contrary to popular belief that LEDs run cool to the touch, the light modules themselves actually run quite hot and inadequate cooling would speed up the degradation. So I would have liked to see them use accent light for DRL like pretty much every other modern vehicle on the road. I honestly can't think another modern vehicle that uses headlight for DRL, not even Toyota's own models.

    I wish they had stayed with intensity requirement, maybe it's time to research the activist groups. I hope I am not the only one who feels these super bright LED's, especially taillights, are killing our visions. While they need to be bright during the day, there's really no reason they need to have the same brightness at night. With the ultra bright LED brake lights shinning a few feet from your face from the SUV in front of you while sitting at a red light, I can hardly see anything else. The Christmas lights on emergency vehicles nowadays are hazzards themselve as they are completely blinding at night. They really should have a requirement for all LED lights, except headlights, to be dimmed at night.
     
  9. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    Cars themselves have limited lives too, much shorter than well designed LEDs.
    That is a prima facie sign of poor heat and temperature management, a common problem with aftermarket and cheap designs.
    The key here is the bad design. Heat and temperature management, including in LED applications, was an essential part of my electrical engineering career long before white LEDs were even invented.
    If LED headlights are well designed as full power headlights, then including reduced power (and cooler) DRL function is an absolute non-issue for their longevity. The car itself will wear out much sooner.

    As for headlights being used as DRLs, I thought that was still the norm for incandescents. Like my current Subaru.

    The best argument for not using headlights as DRLs is the confused or clueless driver issue, mistaking DRLs for real headlights. Separate unpatterned DRLs should help reduce this.
     
  10. Zed Ruhlen

    Zed Ruhlen Member

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    High Beams? How can that be legal? Even in daytime you should never use your high beams when there is oncoming traffic.
     
  11. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    They're dimmed-down high beams; trust me they're not blinding. And that's the norm here. At least it used to be, I think there's more and more dedicated LED DRL's in the newer model cars. Just my 2 cents, the newfangled LED DRL's not as noticeable or effective.
     
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  12. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    For traditional incandescent DRLs, the high beams are run at reduced voltage to reduce intensity.

    And the norm in the U.S. too, from the very beginning of legal DRLs here until the LED versions came along.
     
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  13. mister2cool

    mister2cool Junior Member

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    OK LED expert. I don't know where you are going with this but whatever. I don't like headlights being used for DRL when there are 14 other LED's to be used. Is that OK with you? geez
     
  14. gscully

    gscully Junior Member

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    I’ve had my car for almost two months and about 3500 miles. It’s head and shoulders better than the Prius C it replaced but there are still some things that annoy me and some have already been discussed in this thread but I’ll list them anyway.

    1 The rear window really is annoying when it rains. The water just beads up. It starts to slide off when I get to speed but just in the valley section. I may throw some rain x on there this weekend and see if that helps.

    2 The parking brake is just long enough to annoy me. I keep hitting it with my leg trying to get comfortable. It it were a few inches shorter I don’t think I would ever notice it.

    3 Always starting in EV mode is also annoying. I only charge my battery once a week and I like seeing it at 90%. I like having that extra mileage if I run out of gas but I always end up at around 30% by the end of the week because I forget to switch to HV mode.

    4 The drastic reduction in MPG in colder weather. In the 60’s I was getting over 65 miles per gallon. In the 30’s I’m getting around 50 which is still really great. It just annoys me.

    I’m sure there’s a few more things that I can’t think of right now. None of these make me regret buying the car they just annoy me. This is the best car I’ve ever had and I’m glad I bought it.
     
  15. Marine Ray

    Marine Ray Senior Member

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    Good points, thanks. On your #3, there's some that think the Prime starting in EV mode allows for the $4502 tax credit. Don't know how true that is...but makes sense to me.
     
  16. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    They seem bright enough to wash out the turn signal if left on during that time.
    It is an assumption that the other lights are suitable DRL use. Brightness and placement need to be considered, and places where they are mandatory have legal requirements for the lights.

    Not LEDs, but the parking lights on my '86 Buick could work as fog lights in fog and heavy snow fall. Tried that with the 2005 Prius, and I might as well have had the lights off.

    The turn signals and parking lights may not be bright enough for DRLs, and the 'fog' lights might be mounted too low. Real fog lights might be too bright for use during a clear day.
     
  17. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    Until LEDs came along, DRLs were typically reduced intensity high beams for cars with halogen lights. (Occasionally they were amber parking lights if they were made bright enough or fog lights but typically they were reduced intensity high beams).
     
  18. mister2cool

    mister2cool Junior Member

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    Ok I tested it. It does NOT go into Ready when it's still plugged in. All electronics are on, including seat warmer and air, so I guess it's in ON mode.
     
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  19. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Yeah, it is in the manual. Good to know that at least it goes to ON mode. I wanted to install a remote engine stater on my PRIME to preheat and defrost the windshield in winter when heat pump are not effective. But as it turned out, ICE will not start if the car is plugged. I charge my car over night. If I have to get out to the car to unplug the cord first to use the remote engine starter, it would defeat the purpose of having the "remote".

    charging safety.png
     
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  20. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    One of my pet peeves is headlights with turn signals that are thin strip, tightly integrated with the headlight

    I even emailed Transport Canada about this: they said it's all good. :rolleyes:
     
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