Red Triangle and more...

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Jeff54, Mar 9, 2016.

  1. Jeff54

    Jeff54 Junior Member

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    I got this exact warning Monday which is discussed in this thread (linked below) and its problem was a bad inverter water pump while mine seems fine: . Also in the linked thread another whom had gotten the exact warning, but inverter pump was not the problem, believed it meant the Hybrid battery was bad and replaced it. , but mine, at least for now, as discussed below, seems fine.

    was about to make a trip, 140 miles, gassed up and when leaving station all these (quoted below) warning lights came on. and the car should have been operating in cold condition still as gas station was only a few miles from home. So, maybe it's because the 12V battery was too low? :

    Master Warning Light, Malfunction Indicator, VSC, (!), and Hybrid System Warning on Screen | PriusChat

    I was just two miles from home and had no problems getting back.

    Yet, it's the 1st warning of any type I've gotten since I bought it 8 months ago, 1 owner dealer maintained 200,000 miles, except for 1 thing, somebody has messed with hybrid battery, and prob not a dealer because, it's got 1-2 bolts missing on the housing and a few others were loose. To me, that's never a good sign because, it means some dope did something to this battery and left his finger prints, or otherwise thinks he's an artist and put his artistic signature on it, lost bolt and lose ones. Anyway with all those warning lights I had no preparations or idea except to check online.

    There were no indications of a faulty inverter water pump, vibration felt on hose and visual conformation of fluid flowing inside reservoir tank. Which was the apparent problem in the linked thread.

    I can't recall just exactly when this happened but, VSC and brake warning disappeared. Me wife, always nesting, putting things away in places she can't recall. 'Hid' [grin] my ELM 327 module so it was several hours later when I found where she'd hid it, when I could attempt to read the codes. And by this time, either the 'free ELM 327' apps are failing or no codes were set.

    Bonus points for extended diagnostics testing put the 12v and hybrid batteries down so far, I had to remove 12v and charge over night. (lesson learned, Everybody says remove the 12V battery, yet, that's a lot of unnecessary work because, all ya gottta do is take out the two plugs connecting it too the system, and charge!.) Double bonus points, Learn these things the hard way: wear out battery while screwing with diagnostics and pull all the junk out you don't need too. [grin] 3rd bonus point, learn how to open rear hatch without battery. (No you do not need to remove all the junk as some say, just take the cover off the area where the manual release is. Yet this may also be learned, like I did, the hard way)

    Major Bonus points: Yeah, when you're diagnosing and running the engine while parked, the batteries will run down and will NOT keep batteries charged!. There's no danged alternator, Doh.

    Anyways, The next day, after a 12 hour 2amp charge, on Toyota battery, no AGM charger so set charger on low setting. There are no warning indicators now. And good news too, by this time the hybrid battery had recovered. When all went bad the hybrid battery was only indicating 1 purple bar but, now it was normal, 5-6 bars. I did not notice where the bars were on hybrid battery at first, nor later until just before I lost all power. . I think that's telling me my current 210,000 miles 1 owner Prius hybrid battery was in nice condition when I bought it last July.. And as it recovered, over night, to normal it's GOOD!. [grin] Unless Because, the 12v got a good charge, it reflects inside the Hybrid screen indicator? I hopes not, and that it means my big battery is sweet.


    I've taken it out for a few drives testing and monitoring the 12v battery and although it's not showing new conditions it is running within standard; Refreshing when all systems are off too; to 12.54-6V, operational voltage when on and ready @ 13.9 and with load in ready, front and rear window defrosters on with head lights on @ 11.5 which is above the potential low of 11.2 (or was it 10.5 under a load, and unless below 10.2 then it's ok. I forgot but, whoever wrote the voltage to expect, it is above the low.) so, it's seems that, while the battery is showing signs of age, it ain't dead. It's stable, drawing down power and after resting refreshes back too 12.5-6V

    during test driving, the hybrid battery is discharging and recharging as normal I even almost got all bars 100%, almost. .

    weekly drive to work is about 15 minutes but on weekends I expect it's getting a recharge cycle of 20 minutes or so, and in the least, once a month getting 30 minutes drive time that ought to be keeping the battery in decent condition..

    I've bought a new battery yesterday -ebay seller's sale @ 145.79 delivered. 'Optima 8171-767 YellowTop Deep Cycle & Starting AGM Battery DS46B24R' Apparently now days, they've stuck the vent hole in the right place to hook up without needing extra junk to modify em. . , I'll get that this Monday and it seems the current battery with 12 hour charge too 12.5-6 volts now, will be fine till then. Maybe it could be charged higher but without a AGM changer I don't feel like messing wit dat.

    OK but that's not why I'm looking fer help, as, I don't and could not get any codes before the batteries got to low and of course now there's none..

    Now I expect, if the problem is still there, I'm going to need to drive it to discover.

    I just can't fathom that, this 12v battery pulled all of these triggers, (warning lights) just because it may not have had a good charge when I was about to take a trip. What's worse is, this made me miss an important appointment and if all that was wrong was low 12v battery, as all else seems to be good, it would have resolved the problem on the way there?? . eurgh.


    OR???
     
    #1 Jeff54, Mar 9, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2016
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    try the recharged battery. if it holds the charge and the codes don't come back, you should be fine with the optima. test and/or charge it before installing. otherwise, your hybrid battery probably went south.
     
  3. Jeff54

    Jeff54 Junior Member

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    Thinking it over, maybe. Yesterday's almost 100% charge state might have been premature. That happened though, because I was driving the Prius a few miles on side streets. Perhaps, Indicating too, the 'artist' (guy with loose screws N missing bolts in head) ) might have signed his work because, original owners traded it in @200k with a poor battery. It was then auctioned or distributed off to the dealer I'd got it from. He claimed to have bought it direct from them. Potentially, He hired the artist to replace a few low cells. At least that's my suspicion when I discovered the artists unfinished yet signed work. [grin].


    Yet, during that high cycle I'd been driving around on side streets for a few miles, attempting to revert too charging state as much as feasible on street. And observing battery voltage with an multimeter to discover if I could get a few more millivolts into the 12V bat., rise it up too 12.7-8, I managed it into 12.62-3 but it was short lived. 12.54-6 seems to be its happy place. . . the hybrid bat. was almost 100% this time because I managed it too; all but the top bar, for a period where it seemed to be close enough to light the top, near enough time. . But, I had to make a U-turn and wasn't able to get it that high (close too 100%) again while testing.

    I've had it at 100% once, 6-7 months ago, It was short lived, a minute or two. And as it's 'not designed to do that', I feared then. In fact, that's when I found the art work.. I researched into some 'experts' working on national distribution in rebuilt batteries, who said: "it happens". So, as it's never fluctuated into extreme highs and lows I haven't given it any more thought. And because we've been averaging 50 MPG per tank city, have not been concerned too.

    Maybe it'll show up now, high and low fluctuations of charge and discharge.


    So, the next day It ran back and forth to work, 36 miles round trip easy. no probs, no codes, no fluctuations. But the next day, yesterday, they're back.. 1st it pulled a high 100% and then 2 purple bars while it should have been charging. . This time, after having learned the hard way, "do NOT use to much power diagnosing it!", I tired running the stupid app which I paid Apple for and it would not pull out any codes, nore delete em.. I donna I got like 6 of em, all free but 1, and it , the paid app did work 6 months ago, but not now, errr. However, there's another free one, just released last month. of all out there which are free or little cash, that did. . Yet, accordingly POA11 is not a Prius code, the bet is, after trying to search it out, , it's an POA10: failed DC/DC converter within the inverter. but that's what I got an POA11 and no others so, obviously it's not too reliable.

    I don't have an android, just ipad so, many of the apps out there will not work in apple, apple's rights. most of the Bluetooth types do not work in apple too, it's got to be compatible with apple or they're all a waste of time and or money. 15-20 buck on e-bay for an ELM 327 and of the programs they say comes with em, are no go with apple's blue tooth, (apple rights) That may explain why those fre or small pay apps fail, they didn't pay Apple's rights.

    Anyways, which way to go now?

    Inverter, Converter, hybrid battery?
     
  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    if you don't want to buy a mini vci and old windows laptop, you'll have to pay a dealer to pull the codes.
    if the 12 volt is 12.5 when stone cold, then that's not your problem.
     
  5. Jeff54

    Jeff54 Junior Member

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    Oh yeah a mini I forgot about that, and actually do have a laptop that should pull em. But that's gonna take some time to order up off of e-pay.

    In the mean time, whelp yeah, the battery isn't too bad. 1st day after charging it held onto 12.54 pretty good. yesterday morn it had it in range, 12.5. this morning though and I expect it may be because there's no way to recharge it after opening windows with it, running a few diagnosis then closing windows it's pulling 12.3. And so, , took it around the block, and it charged back up to it's happy spot 12.56.

    It's seems that the Converter is working regardless of the code set..

    Maybe it's the hybrid bat, only, but, to get to that thought then, I'd need to confirm that people have gotten an POA10 and turned out to be it, the hybrid battery. or I should add, the app that pulled the POA11, also noted it as "failed DC/DC converter within the inverter"

    One things for sure, the charging around the block a few times in it, is bouncing high and lows, and it's wanting to run the engine when it should be slow enough, and have enough bars to, to go on bat only. it only wanted to run on the hybrid bat for a few seconds and then kicked the engine on. Albeit, I may have to run it more to fully confirm that yet, it's hinting.
     
    #5 Jeff54, Mar 11, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2016
  6. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    agreed, it does sound like the battery. i just don't trust any of the code readers besides tech stream.
     
  7. Jeff54

    Jeff54 Junior Member

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    OK this is really strange. Today I unplugged the 12V bat to clear all and try for trouble codes again. But this time there were none, and I mean nothing after taking it up and down streets, averaging 30MPH up to 40 for about 15 miles. No warnings, no alerts and finally no codes reset. The only noticeable event would be occasional 100% Bat bars. I really don't drive this much my wife does but on weekends I've tried on occasion to get 100% yet only once 6 moths ago.. It ran on Bat for short periods when I think it should/could but maybe not as long as previously, I just can't be too sure as I haven't exercised this often enough. But I did not have, other than 3 different times @ 100%, during this test drive, no high low bounces as previous when warning lights existed.

    I think to the layman it appears to be operating just fine.. And that's just what happened the 1st day I had recharged the 12V which it operated just fine in 36 mile round trip to work. (wife diving) That would include cold start each way.

    There is though, according to that App the permanent trouble code POA11: "DC/DC Converter Enable Circuit/Open" That's not going away, accordingly unless I do the 10 mile hat trick, or operate it from cold 3 times at least 10 minute, without fault.

    That open circuit code, even if it's actually a POA10, would be quite strange if it's the hybrid battery. Because it's clearly charging, it's capable of operating in bat only mode and when it shows charge in the bars other than the irregular 100% it's doing just fine.

    1st 5 minutes recorded 27 MPG, which should be fairly normal in cold start and the next 3 recorded averages of 60MPG and higher, I was attempting to keep the bars high as much as possible, force charge into the hybrid bat, otherwise at an average of 30MPH 60-70 MPG on flat roads is normal for this car. .

    So, this is odd. Whatever is kicking the warning out seems to be a little erratic, or Toyoda lets it reset, operate fairly normal and on the 3rd cold start, which would be the last time the alerts occurred, it what? reverts to limp mode? Stays in limp mode unless 12v power is disconnected and pulls a 3 times is a charm, lets go to limp mode again?
     
    #7 Jeff54, Mar 12, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2016
  8. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    code be some corrosion inside the battery pack, or a cell is on the edge.
     
  9. Jeff54

    Jeff54 Junior Member

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    Although that sounds like a best case scenario, [grin] it does seem possible. Albeit I am prepared to go the distance and but, that ought to be easy enough to check out. thanks. I'll let ya know whenever I can get into it. Because, I'm sure that battery is one heavy dude, crippled that I am, heavy is difficult but, determination is not. Thanks ;)
     
  10. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    yes, you should have a helper. and beware: HIGH VOLTAGE! read some threads before tackling.(y)

    it is also possible a grid charger might help you.
     
  11. Jeff54

    Jeff54 Junior Member

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    Yeah, high volts and I have the same agreement as Murphy's law. I do it right, volts wont get me and murphy wont mess it up, ;)

    edit, and sure, heck ya, I got a helper buddy! Max is always ready to tackle anything.

    Max-on-Skateboard.jpg
     
    #11 Jeff54, Mar 12, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2016
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  12. Jeff54

    Jeff54 Junior Member

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    Whelp, thanks for the help bisco you were right on first call, right on the money. it was my DT battery. I decided to buy a newly reconditioned by CARDONE, with manufacture's 3 year warranty. I am crippled with rheumatoid arthritis but quite able, yet,, very difficult to pick up that battery for sure. I could not find anybody local to me in Ft Myers Fl. The people and or companies are all in Miami, Orlando and Tampa bay areas.

    The options are, a couple of $500 guys who just bring some cells and claim to condition them, others for $8-900 to do the same thing and 1 or 2 who claim to have the equipment to do it right for $1,500 too $1800, plus travel with 1 year warranties plus a few more who sell different brands of factory reconditioned @ $1,500 with 18 month warranty plus travel of $200-350 and $100 installation or 2-3 year warranty, if ya add 300 bucks for each level higher. .

    Yet as luck would have it, 1 guy I called was near me, from St, Petersburg (Tampa) installing a CARDONE battery and before he came down had bought another fresh new one for a car he intended to install it into and flip when he got back to St. Petersburg. ( he was driving that car when he came) Usually he'd get travel and installation fees but, because he was near did the whole job, pre-testing with some kind of kick butt test equipment ( I forgot the brand) that read each cell and far more codes than my cheap ELM was picking up which confirmed the suspicions. There was 1 bad module for sure, and variables which would take much more testing but indicated, it would need more than simply pulling off a change a few and go solution.

    And for $1,520 installed cleaned out and fully tested. heck what a deal. At least here in Florida because, I browsed all the way into Los Angeles, and dang, in comparison, in the Los Angles basin, they're cheap! 100's of ads on Craig's list $300-600, 100's and 100's, Regardless, He expected to complete the job he'd came for at 10PM which gave me some time to check him and the batteries out, he was selling because, it was 6 PM whenever I'd found his number on Craig's list. It was just a quarter after 10 when I decided to go with it and he was just gassing up before hitting the freeway for the 2 1/2 hour drive back, yet was glad, ready and willing to do it then.. Started about 11 PM and completed by 1:00 am.

    He was fast, knew exactly what he was doing, clean, nice, seemly responsible and had been at this game for 6 years plus. Accordingly, 'talk story', 6 years plus, he had started out, doing the stop, drop, pull and go deal. Batteries he had picked up after replacing that he would have changed a few cells with 6-12 months warranty. Said he was making money hand over foot.. And many of the stop, drop, pull and go jobs he did, did fail yet even so, he was still making big profits doing warranty service on the failures, it was great money. but, the drudgery got to him after 4-5 years. said that most of the guys who are doing those $5-800 jobs, he trained.

    It was just too much until he began just installing the factory reconditioned batteries. Clamed that now, the profits are not as high, but, it's plenty enough and with the CARDONE batteries, and the factory warranty of 36 months very, very few fail, if any at all. So, life is good. He seemed very confident that the CARDONE battery would not fail during the warranty period, but if so, he'd be at my door with a new one, and that, if he was out of business or whatever, the serial number would serve the warranty and, although he did not say, "they'd install", and it seemed under breath, or hinted, although they would deliver a freash one to my door, I'd probably have to do the install my self. I'm good with that.


    I had planed, whenever I first bought my package 5 2005 Prius, with 200k miles, too need to spend and additional $1,000 in some sort of repairs, ("ready to go the distance") and @ $1,520, it's over budget but, heck, It it drives and feels great now, better than ever, and with that 36 months CARDONE factory warranty, I can't complain.

    It passes all test now except 1. passenger side solar sensor up on the dash is failing but, he said, 'just about all of the early Prius' do that after 3 years or so, it's part of the A/C system and down here in Florida where we don't have freezing winters, don't worry about it.' He explained just about everything or reason that solar sensor does, and I felt comfortable he knew what he's talking about. Additionally, He sounds like an expert in Prius, and having somebody who's that versed, have a real good look at my recent acquisition, at no additional cost,, was good! Comforting to know your 200k car was doing just fine, to say the least.

    Whelp 'Talk story' is just that so, we documented his installation with photos, just in case of the 'Fly by night' clause, [grin].
    P3150624.JPG
     
    #12 Jeff54, Mar 18, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2016
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  13. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    glad you got her done, all the best and thanks for the write up. keep us posted!(y)
     
  14. Jeff54

    Jeff54 Junior Member

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    The wife has been driving it but I got my chance yesterday, It's definitely better than ever. Much longer dives capable @ 35-40 MPH on Bat only. Far less Battery power fluxuations than when we got it about 8 months ago. Now I expect that our usual 10 gallons of gas will easily top its 50 MPG average at fill up. 55 is a definite doable and my sights are on 60. All flat Florida roads.

    Unfortunately, when the bat went I had just filled it up, and the day it got back on the road, last Wednesday, for all the waste 'test driving' of mine before that, she reported "Only 40 MPG averaging" the first night after 36 miles round trip work and back. She was up too 46.7 after 4 days round trip to work. when I took off, cold engine, and returned with 48.9 on about 14 mile round trip. I've driven this trip a few times before and usually I couldn't get but, maybe .1-.2 increase in the average, if any. 1.2 increase is huge. @ 50 MPG and fuel bars @ about 3/4 (Not reliable or acurite Toyota gauge), it means by the end of next week, typical trip gas up period, She'll easily beat her 50 MPG which would mean it's much higher, considering all the gas I wasted, to be sure. . I'm looking forward to next weeks fill up because, on that fill we'll really know just how much further we can go. 55MPG? maybe but 60 looks quite possible :O
     
    #14 Jeff54, Mar 21, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2016
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