unable to start in cold weather?

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by prince, Oct 30, 2017.

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  1. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    I left my Prius in a covered parking lot by the airport while I was gone for about 3 nights, came back and it appeared completely dead. No lights, nothing. I had someone come by to jump start the battery and it came to life but the battery upon start up is almost full so it can't be a dead battery.

    Has anyone encountered this before or knows what might be going on? It started fine this morning in my garage and no issues so far but still would like to know if there is any cold weather related stuff going on that I can prevent.

    Thank you in advance!
     
  2. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    Temperature had nothing to do with it. Looks like you left a light on or something and came home to a dead 12v battery. Maybe the cargo light? If the hybrid battery was a fault, first of all, the jump wouldn't have done anything and also, you would not have see a full hybrid battery indication.

    Keep a close eye on that 12v battery now because the often don't last long after getting run down like that. And be very careful jumping a Prius. Connecting the cables wrong can be very expensive.

    Also, I see that you have this in the Prius Prime forum, but your info says you have a 2011. Do you need to update your info?
     
  3. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    I was thinking that too until I noticed the battery after the jump was almost full. So you are saying it would run down and after a jump it'll get back to almost full? Also I just noticed you said 12v and hybrid battery so these are two different things... sorry I'm a total newbie trying to get what you are saying. Oops, I did post in the wrong forum, is it possible to move this thread into the correct one? I still have a 2011.
     
  4. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    You're confusing the 12V battery that powers the computers and the relays that connect the hybrid battery to the car with the hybrid battery itself, which propels your car down the road. The battery bars you see are the hybrid (traction) battery level. It doesn't say anything about the 12v battery. If the 12V battery is dead, the car is dead. No lights, no nuthin', which is what you experienced. If the traction (hybrid) battery is at fault, you get various lights on the dash and the car likely won't go. Also, if the 12V is low, but not too far gone, you'll also get all sorts of lights and strange behavior.

    A moderator can move your post to a more appropriate forum. Just click the "Report" button at the bottom of your first post and go from there. (y)
     
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  5. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    Thank you! I just reported it so hopefully it will get moved soon.

    That makes sense about the battery, and I did notice that all of a sudden when I highlight over buttons on the wheel it would get projected onto the dashboard screen which never happened before. Time for a new battery it seems. Thank you for pointing this out, I did get the two batteries confused.
     
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  6. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    Sounds like a plan. Won't hurt to have the 12V tested with a load tester. But either way, keep an eye on it and be ready to get a new 12V soon.
     
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  7. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    Thank you! Any recommendations on a 12v or let the dealer take care of it?
     
  8. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    There are a ton of threads here on 12V battery preferences. I favor the Toyota battery because it holds up so well, but lots of people think that the Optima yellow top battery is a good and less expensive alternative. I believe there are other options, but those seem to me to be the top two contenders.

    Another popular item is the booster battery packs you can buy now. Handy in case you or someone else needs a jump. I don't have one, but I'm thinking about it. Lots of discussion here about those, too. BTW, you NEVER want to try to jump start a regular using your Prius. The 12V battery is too small and something will probably break.
     
  9. David Beale

    David Beale Senior Member

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    You can also use an "Exide" AGM or "advanced AGM". They make one in the Prius size. If the dealer wants $250 or less, installed that's a reasonable price (for a Prius battery - unreasonable for anything else ;) ).
     
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  10. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    I called the dealer here and it's $210 for the battery and $35 for installation. The battery they are providing is Interstate and not the OEM? They said I could bring in my own battery and would install for $35.
     
  11. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    Install is very easy, if you have correct sized battery, proper post diameter/location, and the vent port. The OEM, and/or several aftermarket choices are available.

    On the old battery, disconnect neg first, then positive, and the reverse when installing the new. It's not a bad idea to hook up the new battery to a 4 amp range smart charger, let it run a complete charging session (4~8 hours) prior to install.

    The only wrinkle I encountered when installing an Optima Yellow Top, was the hold-down bracket has next to zero tolerance for height difference (poor design) and the new battery was a smidge taller. I put a washer under the bracket at one end, fixed that.

    A 10 mm wrench is basically all you need. And some fine sand paper and a wire brush and/or battery post/clamp cleaner is handy, to clean things up before connecting.
     
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  12. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    Thank you Jerry! I am favoring the Toyota as well but the dealer is saying you can't buy them anymore so they want to order an Interstate for me. Very strange as I can get those from NTB.
     
  13. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    I am trying to look these Exide's up... is there a specific product link from their website? I would like to compare it to the Optima. In auto zone it only shows the optima and duralast as compatible with my 2011 Prius, nothing about AGM.
     
  14. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    You make it sound so easy, lol. I may have to follow a youtube vid or two to see what you are talking about or just have it professionally installed.
     
  15. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    What he said!

    The only battery receipt I can find was $200 even plus $1.50 for disposal for a Toyota battery, but that was not from a Toyota dealer. Easy to replace.
     
  16. kenoarto

    kenoarto Senior Member

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    Just wondering: is that the original, 6 year old, 12v battery?
     
  17. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    Yes, I bought the car at 60k miles a little over 3 years ago but no indication in the service records of the battery being replaced so I assume it is the original OEM 12v. Have had no issues until the discharge at the airport this past weekend when I was out for 3 nights. I originally thought it was the cold but as Jerry indicated I may have left something on that drained it or it's just really old.
     
  18. kenoarto

    kenoarto Senior Member

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    Old battery plus cold = dead battery = no start. Even a new battery will be dead if you leave a light on for 3 days. Most 12v batteries are good for 5ish years, more or less. How often did you replace the battery on your previous car? FYI: Some Prius geeks trickle charge their batteries every night, but even then, 12v batteries always ALWAYS die. The choice is simple: do you fill/replace the gas/battery before you run out of juice, or after? I fill the gas tank before the last tick and replace the battery every 4 or 5 years.
     
    #18 kenoarto, Oct 31, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2017
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  19. prince

    prince Junior Member

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    Right on, in my last car I replaced it at about 5 years. I typically fill up my gas after 50%. This one has definitely exceeded the life span in that sense.

    I did take it to auto zone this evening to have them check it but as soon as the guy walked out and saw it was a Prius he was like "oh no way man, we don't touch hybrids, take that to the dealer!"
     
  20. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    Cowards!! :whistle:
     
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