Remote A/C & Climate Prep Quick Guide

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by Since2002, Jan 9, 2017.

  1. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Relating to the other post Remote start and charging? | PriusChat, I have tested Prime's remote A/C or Climate Prep capablity in extreme cold. The conclusion, IT DOES NOTHING when outside temp is SOOOO COLD. When you really need/want warmed up cabin to start driving, the heat pump provide absolutely no heat.

    Here is the condition I tested.

    outside temp registered by the car: -1F
    climate control temp setting: HI
    climate control fan setting: HI
    traction battery charge level: Fully charged
    inside cabin temp before remote A/C: 5F
    inside cabin temp after remote A/C 10 min: 5F
    inside cabin temp after remote A/C additional 10 min: 5F

    I tried this sequence first with the car plugged in, then next with car fully charged but not plugged in. Results, no difference. Either case, ICE does not turn on. When remote A/C is pushed and held, the car responds by locking all the doors, flashing lights and beeping, then it makes wheeling sound from engine compartment presumably fan running, but seems the heat pump does not send warmer air into the cabin.

    After failing to warm-up the car cabin by heat pump, I got into the car which was at 5F. When I started the car to "READY", ICE came on immediately. With climate control setting at "HI", even with ICE on all the way, the cabin temp only reached up to 45F after my 30 min/18 mile morning commute. Seems this car is not really designed to be driven during extreme cold. What a bummer!:(
     
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  2. Mark57

    Mark57 Senior Member

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    Due to the extreme cold, it needs to run the ICE for heat and I'm guessing Toyota never wants that to accidentally happen if a vehicle happens to be inside a garage (CO2 poisoning) so they don't allow the owner to override it with the key fob / app methods. It looks like a case where the dealer installed remote start some have been sold has merit to get the ICE started.
     
  3. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Yes, a remote engine starter installed by this OP Remote start and charging? | PriusChat seems to be a reasonable investment, if ICE does in fact start when the car is plugged in. I have not confirmed this yet. But if the charger must be unplugged in order to start the ICE by the remote, then it would defeat the purpose of having a remote. I still have to go outside, unplug charger. If I have to go outside anyway, then I will just start the car to "READY" and put the climate control all the way to HI. BUT, even with this scenario, it will take good 30 min or more of engine run time in order to make the inside cabin at comfortable temp. :(
     
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  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    block heater?
     
  5. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Does engine block heater improve cabin heat output? I had engine block heater on my first car I owned, but that was 30+ years ago in Minnesota. I hardly ever plugged it in for I did not have a convenient AC outlet back then, but still had no problem starting. No other cars I owned ever had engine block heater, but heat output were all OK.
     
  6. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    perhaps if you were driving, with a load on the engine, it would warm up faster.

    yes, because the engine is preheated, the coolant is warm, and provides heat immediately.
     
    #66 bisco, Dec 29, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 29, 2017
  7. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Maybe what I need is heated garage then. ;)
     
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  8. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    would love to heat my garage, but don't want to spend the money or burn the oil.:cool:
     
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  9. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    An EBH will definitely help in this case since it's cold enough that the engine needs to come on to provide heat. The EBH will at least give the engine a head start.

    • It'll reduce wear & tear since the engine is starting up at a warmer temperature than whatever it is outside.
    • It'll provide heat faster because the engine is already starting at a warmer temperature so it can heat up faster
    • Better fuel economy - again, it's about getting that engine temperature up to near operating as soon as possible.

    Plug it in for about 1-2 hours (or leave it on a timer if you don't want to go out early in the morning).

    Also, don't run your climate on HI (which I presumes forces the climate control to go on max fan speed). Let the engine warm up before drawing heat from it... leaving it in AUTO and a desired temperature (e.g. 72 or 75) and the climate control will slowly increase the fan speed as the temperature in the engine increases.
     
  10. Jawsch

    Jawsch Member

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    I was pretty frustrated this morning when my app kept saying failed to start remote climate.

    But even that aside, whenever I try to use the app for remote climate, it takes upwards of 4+ minutes for it to connect and turn on. Is that normal?
     
  11. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    Normal? not sure but in the general sense, a software in 2017 should not take 4 minutes to process. It might've been ok in the world of 486s but not in 2017. Toyota needs to either strengthen their server side or put a stronger cellphone chip in the car (or optimize their software)
     
  12. rsl360

    rsl360 New Member

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    This just seems wrong. My car heats up in like 2 minutes. Granted, it was about 10 degrees warmer, but still........ Guess I should put an OBDII sensor on it to see how fast the engine itself warms up. (so as to see which heat is from the heat pump, and which is from the engine.) My sense is that a lot of modern cars are designed to heat up quickly, by fiddling with the mixture and timing, but I'm not sure. I think the idea is to strike a balance between a cold car, which pollutes more, and a warm car, which pollutes less, but you need to burn extra gas to get it hot quickly. And burning extra gas kill mileage, and also causes more C02 pollution.

    Of course, I don't know what you consider "warm". It might take a while to get the whole interior tropical. Myself, the cold does not bother me a whole lot.
     
  13. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Let us know what you find out from your test. I am very curious to know how PRIME decide what heat to use for the cabin warmth. There was a statement somewhere, maybe not in this thread but different thread, that said Prime in extreme cold (below 14F) will use ICE for heat but traction battery continues to drive the motor, or something in that effect. In my experience, when temperature is even lower, around 0F, the ICE is the only thing running entire car. I have driven close to 40 miles on EV mode on this condition but ICE was on all the time, and battery level did not change at all. By the way, I have compared setting climate control at HI and AUTO, and it turned out AUTO was faster in warming up the cabin temperature. I am keeping a digital thermometer with memory functions on the consol next to driver seat. Today with daytime hi temperature of 13F in our area, morning temperature was -3F. According to the reading of this termometer, even with AUTO 70F climate setting, the highest it reached during my morning short trips of less than 20 miles in town of about 30 min was only 24F. However after being outside in sub zero temp with windchill of -30F, even 24F inside car felt quite WARM.;)
     
  14. Lee Jay

    Lee Jay Senior Member

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    It's in the owner's manual, page 87.

    upload_2018-1-7_17-41-1.png
     
  15. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    I know ICE comes on under certain circumstances as described in the manual. The statement I read somewhere was saying even under the cold temperature circumstances when ICE comes on while EV mode was selected, ICE is only providing heat and the traction battery continues to run the motor. I am doubting that statement from my own experience.
     
  16. Lee Jay

    Lee Jay Senior Member

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    You're correct - that is not true.
     
  17. rsl360

    rsl360 New Member

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    Salamander King-

    So I sort of roughly track the engine temp as the Prime was warming up. Using an OBD2 gauge to track the temp. The number are kind of rough, since I cannot write and drive at the same time. And it was not nearly as cold yesterday. Anyway, driving in hybrid mode. The engine started out at 28f. At the end of the first mile, it was up to about 90f. By the end of the second mile, it was about 120. By the end of the 3rd mile it was about 140, and by the end of the fourth mile, it was about 170. It seems somewhat non-linear, but of course, the engine stop and starts depending on my driving.

    Anyway, I had useful heat within a mile. My car warms up very fast. I suspect that both the heat pump and the engine are at work to heat the car initially, at least in the configuration that I was driving it in.

    18 miles with no heat is just nuts, something is wrong with your car. Stuck thermostat, coolant fan that won't shut off, bad temp sensor confusing the computer. Try running your traction battery down some, then, (next day), drive the car in charge mode. The engine should run the whole time. If that does not get it to heat up, some must be wrong.
     
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  18. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Thanks for the info. I think ICE warms up much quicker in your condition especially starting at 28F. I want to clarify that I did not say "No heat" in 18 miles. I said the car warmed up from 5F to only 45F after my 30 min/18 mile morning commute with ICE only in subzero ambient temp with Climate control set to HI. In fact today the temperature was much more moderate at 26F when I drove to work. I wanted to save EV miles for the commute back home, so I drove all 18 miles on HV mode. ICE was on most of the time but after warm-up some segument did allow me to drive with EV lights on. The cabin temp after 18 miles/30min drive was piping hot 65F with Climate control set at AUTO 70F. This is about same 40F increase as before, but much more comfortable temp. That said, I still think PRIME's climate prep with heat pump only in subzero ambient temperature has very little heat production.
     
    #78 Salamander_King, Jan 9, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2018
  19. CMPTosh

    CMPTosh New Member

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    Apologies if this is covered elsewhere in the thread, but a question about Climate Prep: is there an interior indicator that climate prep is underway? A dash light, or something on the MID or 11" screen?

    Thanks!
     
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