Struck by lightning

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by 70ghia, Apr 28, 2022.

  1. 70ghia

    70ghia Wally

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    I just got my 2020 Prius Prime back from being fixed after being struck by lightning a month ago. It has been at the local Toyota dealer's service center the entire month.

    Last month the car failed to go to a "Ready" state when I got into it. It would just go to "Ignition on" and would rotate to "Accessory" But it would not go to a "Powered off" state. While in "Ignition on" it would display several errors on the screen. Those included, "Shifter disabled", Breaks malfunction", "No engine oil", "PWSD failure", "Forward camera failure", and many others. Most ended with a statement that the car needed be serviced.

    Toyota roadside assistance came out and disconnected the 12V battery several times trying to reset the ECU to get it do something. But the car kept going back to the same state of rotating between "Ignition on" and "Accessory". But not really doing anything more.

    The Tech finally figured out that if he put on the emergency break, that he could then press "Park" and power off the car. He was initially concerned that he wouldn't be able to tow the car given that the shifter was disabled which left the car stuck in park. But he used skids to pull the car onto the tow truck without too much trouble.

    While being services, they replaced the ECU initially and then found out that the hybrid battery computer also needed to be replaced. All said, the final bill was just under $3200 and included 7 hours of labor. I didn't think that was too bad. Insurance took care of most of the bill (except for my deductible.)

    Insurance approval and the hybrid battery computer being on backorder for about 10 days were the bulk of the delays in getting it repaired.
     
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  2. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    Last summer, we lost our 2018 Prius to an electrical “surge”. We couldn’t find a strike point but the car was sitting under a large tree in over a foot of stormwater on the right hand, curbed side during the storm. Kids were home and heard the massive strike(s). Our home lost several items and next door neighbor did too. His driveway flows water out to the street. It took out both rear ABS sensors, the ABS system, power brakes, a/c, and who knows what else before insurance + dealer prices/labor totaled it.

    Upside: replaced with ‘19 Prime (before high gas prices really sent hybrid pricing thru the roof).
     
  3. Washingtonian

    Washingtonian Senior Member

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    I have learned two things here. First, I thought the tires would keep a car from being grounded, so lightning would not strike it. Of course, sitting in a foot of water would negate that. Second, I didn't realize that insurance would cover lightning damage to a car.
     
  4. Dennis_MA

    Dennis_MA Member

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    I think it is covered under the comprehensive insurance. I just made a claim when rodents chewed some of the engine wires on my BMW.
     
  5. Gokhan

    Gokhan Senior Member

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    It wasn't lightning. It was this—an electromagnetic pulse (EMP):

     
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  6. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Did you know that the car was struck by lightning before calling Toyota, or did they conclude that was the cause by some evidence?
     
  7. 70ghia

    70ghia Wally

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    I didn't know that it was hit by lightning or an EMP until after the service department concluded that was what happened. There was no damage externally to the car at all.

    It is covered under comprehensive coverage as an act of nature. I have All State and a vanishing deductible. However, the vanishing deductible doesn't apply to comprehensive coverage. So I had to pay the deductible. But that was better than the entire amount. It was actually done in stages. The first estimate covered the ECU. Once they replaced that they could do diagnostics to see what else was damaged. That was then they found the hybrid battery computer and did another estimate which also needed insurance approval. The server tech and the insurance adjuster talked like this was fairly normal process in this situation and that they might need to go back and forth a few times to get everything resolved.
     
  8. prius16

    prius16 Active Member

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    Next time, maybe don't go storm chasing. :eek:

    Code:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s25MK1T1icw
    CAR STRUCK BY LIGHTNING!!!
    Apr 13, 2022
    High Risk Chris





    Btw, I'm glad that your car is working again.
     
  9. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    If there is enough voltage to jump across 10,000 feet of air above the car, then there is enough to jump across a mere 5 inches of air below the car. Cars have been getting hit by lightning even since cars existed.

    Others have also pointed out that some tire formulations also include additives that happen to make them more conductive than old fashioned pure rubber.
    Only the Comprehensive option covers it. This element is not a legal requirement, so many people drop it on older cars, sometime after any financing has been paid off Lenders typically require you to have it.
     
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  10. huskers

    huskers Senior Member

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    That does not seem like a good way to try and charge your car.
     
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  11. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    Perhaps if you need to travel time.
     
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  12. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    was there a lightning storm?
     
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  13. 70ghia

    70ghia Wally

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    Sorry for the late reply, Bisco. I was out of town when it happened. But I live in Central Florida and there is usually frequent lightning storms starting up this time of year.