???Question about jumping a Prius???

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by mdhugh2, Aug 5, 2013.

  1. mdhugh2

    mdhugh2 New Member

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    My friend has left her Prius (2001, classic model) over the summer while she was in California. I drove it about once a week to make sure it kept a charge. I went to go drive it one day, and it did not start. I could instantly tell it was the battery due to nothing electrical responding. So I went online and looked up some information about charging a Prius. I jumped it through the 12v battery in the trunk and it seemed to work. After jumping it, I drove it around for a good 15 minutes like would do with any other vehicle. I parked it, turned it off, tried to start it again to see if the charge held. It did nothing again. I jump started it again. Drove it around even longer. The same thing happened. I know nothing about hybrids and just wondering if I'm doing anything wrong or if I should try charging the main battery through the front by the engine? Help would be very appreciated.
     
  2. SteveLee

    SteveLee Active Member

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    The 12V is likely toast. If it doesn't keep a charge after slow charging and then after running for a while, start looking for a replacement.

    BTW, all this jumping and charging, make sure you don't cross connect. That's a very bad thing.
     
  3. xliderider

    xliderider Senior Member

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    There is no charging the main battery from the engine compartment. Be careful you don't do any damage to your friend's car.

    Time to contact your friend and let them direct you on further action. They must have changed the 12v battery in the past due to the age of the car at least once.
     
  4. xpcman

    xpcman Senior Member

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    The charging rate is VERY low in the Prius. So 15 min is not going to do much. Also do not rev the 2nd car when you do the jump and NEVER-NEVER-NEVER cross connect the cables ($1,000+ damage).

    But, it's probably time for it's 3rd or 4th battery.
     
  5. scotman27

    scotman27 Active Member

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    now when we talk about the 12v battery, we mean the little 12v car battery in the trunk, not the hybrid battery(also called High voltage/HV battery, Traction battery, battery pack, main battery).
     
  6. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible Chance favors the prepared mind.

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    The 12v battery in the trunk needs a full charge. It may no longer be good, but the first thing is to determine that.

    You can either place a trickle charger on it overnight (my suggestion), or remove it and take it to a battery shop for a recharge. They may charge a fee, and they may tell you the battery is an ex-battery. A discharged battery develops sulphates on the lead surfaces. This coating prevents the reaction that produces electricity. A slow charge can remove some of it, but not always enough. It really may be actually dead by now. Be prepared.

    When jumping a battery from a second vehicle, remember that the leads go positive to positive and negative to negative. It is perfectly fine and usually desireable to increase the engine speed of the donor vehicle. Alternators don't provide much of a charge at all until 1500-1800 rpms. I hold my engines at 2000 rpms when jumping. Try to start right away, if it doesn't work wait another three minutes and try again. Repeat. Don't use any electrical items on the dead car while all this is going on. Turn everything off to not waste any charge.

    After the vehicle is successfully jumped and running, 15 minutes of slow driving is worthless. You would want to drive on the open highway for 30-45 minutes minimum, in my opinion. Either that or drive home and put the battery on the charger. Everyone with a car should have a trickle charger to put on a battery overnight. I have two. The brand I recommend is Battery Tender. These can be found at any motorcycle shop, many parts stores, and Wal-Mart has some other brand for boat batteries.
     
  7. g4_power

    g4_power Junior Member

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    "When jumping a battery from a second vehicle, remember that the leads go positive to positive and negative to negative. It is perfectly fine and usually desireable to increase the engine speed of the donor vehicle. Alternators don't provide much of a charge at all until 1500-1800 rpms. I hold my engines at 2000 rpms when jumping. Try to start right away, if it doesn't work wait another three minutes and try again. Repeat. Don't use any electrical items on the dead car while all this is going on. Turn everything off to not waste any charge.

    After the vehicle is successfully jumped and running, 15 minutes of slow driving is worthless. You would want to drive on the open highway for 30-45 minutes minimum, in my opinion. Either that or drive home and put the battery on the charger. Everyone with a car should have a trickle charger to put on a battery overnight. I have two. The brand I recommend is Battery Tender. These can be found at any motorcycle shop, many parts stores, and Wal-Mart has some other brand for boat batteries."


    The dead battery is in a PRIUS. Therefore, there's no need to rev the donor's engine. In face, you don't even need an running engine. All you need is hook up the jump cable properly and that should be enough power to boot up the Prius computer and activate the relay for the traction battery. Once the READY light comes on, the jumper cable could be unhooked. You don't even need to drive the Prius, just let it sit there for a few hours.
     
    garglo and xpcman like this.
  8. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible Chance favors the prepared mind.

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    Paraphrased…
    1. Connect jumper cables as previously described by Mr Incredible.
    2. Start the engine of the second vehicle. Increase the engine speed slightly and maintain that level for approximately 5 minutes to recharge the 12v battery of your vehicle.
    3. Vehicles without a smart key maintain the engine speed of the second vehicle and start the hybrid system of your vehicle by turning the engine switch to the ON position.
    Vehicles with a smart key system maintain the engine speed of the second vehicle and start the hybrid system of your vehicle by turning the POWER switch to the ON mode.
    4. Make sure the READY indicator comes on. If it does not, contact your Toyota dealer.
    5. Remove jumper cables in the reverse order of placing them.

     
  9. g4_power

    g4_power Junior Member

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    A typical 12v car battery could provide 50 amps for at least 30 seconds. That's ample of power to boot the Prius computer. No need to run the engine of the second car.

    Once the READY light is on, the traction battery will take over and start charging the Prius's 12v battery. Jumper cables could be removed at that point. There's no need to drive the Prius unless you wanted to. You could just let the Prius sit there for a couple of hours. The ICE will start automatically when the traction battery runs low.

    The bottomline is that you don't even need a second car. You just need a fully charged second 12v battery along with a jumper cable. The Prius does not use the 12v to start the ICE. The 12v is just for the electronics.
     
  10. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible Chance favors the prepared mind.

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    Having not jumped a Prius, I couldn't say what a real world event would look like.

    But having jumped a multitude of dead regular cars, I can say that simply having a battery to jump off of would not work in the great majority of cases. Increased RPM and time are required almost always.

    Having an older Prius, you may have had to jump it. Is this the case or are you merely citing theory?
     
  11. g4_power

    g4_power Junior Member

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    The Prius is not a regular gas car, it's a hybrid. I'm speaking from experience, not theory. The Prius uses the traction battery to start the ICE, and that battery is huge in size and power. You should never mess with that battery. The 12v battery is for powering the computer and it doesn't need a lot of power to boot up the computer. Once the computer is booted up, the car should be able to run itself. If it doesn't, you may have bigger problem than a dead battery.
     
  12. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible Chance favors the prepared mind.

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    I fully and completely understand what you are saying. Is the one battery, no car sufficient to boot the system to start the car? I believe it might, but would add that it does not appear to be guaranteed if the factory manual suggests increased RPMs and time. Perhaps they think it important to drive away with some backup charge.

    Not trying to be argumentative, only to find out how real world Prius jumps work.
     
  13. SteveLee

    SteveLee Active Member

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    Does the factory manual state that? Which one and where? It's no secret that the 12V only turns on the electronics and and HV turns the MG starting the car. The risk of introducing excessive or jolting power to the system resulting in costly damage is too high to recommend others do it. I believe I recall it being stated in PC that the system has been jumped with little flashlight batteries. But absolutely a jump from a battery in a donor car with that car off is enough to turn on the electronics so the HV battery can run the system.
     
  14. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible Chance favors the prepared mind.

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    I copied it out of the C manual .pdf.

    I have no idea what your manual says.

    What does it say?
     
  15. SteveLee

    SteveLee Active Member

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    Checked my manual. You are correct. My bad. It does recommend the donor car be running at 2,000 rpm's for five minutes while the donor battery is connected to the discharged car before placing it in Ready mode. I suspect in most cases this is not necessary but would depend on how dead the battery is and that is what it says. It's also true that once the system is in Ready mode it doesn't have to be driven to be charging. The ICE will cycle on as needed.
     
  16. g4_power

    g4_power Junior Member

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    I still disagree with the revving. My gas-only van produce 14v across the battery without revving. There's no need to rev just to power up the Prius computer. If one choose to leave the cable there for 5 minutes, I'm not going to fight that but revving is really not necessary.
     
  17. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible Chance favors the prepared mind.

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    I would think its more about amps than volts, but with a depleted battery the input voltage may not be be as needed.
     
  18. mikefocke

    mikefocke Prius v Three 2012, Avalon 2011

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    Been jumping cars for 50 years plus and always have used the donor revs method and waited a few minutes before starting the dead car. Only once it didn't work and AAA had to use a special charging vehicle with a 24 volt battery circuit they claimed. I've always carried heavy duty extra long expensive cables and been the donor many times.

    I figure if I wanted to I could always RTM before doing it with the Prius to see if it could even be done. Maybe flag down a normal car and use my jumpers if I couldn't.
     
  19. g4_power

    g4_power Junior Member

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    I hooked a 2000 watt inverter directly to my van's battery and pulled 1100 watt for 15 seconds, I did it without revving the engine. The 12v battery in the Prius is only use for booting up the computer and activate a relay. All you'll need is a fully charged second 12v battery. You wouldn't a second car.
     
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