Last post on Oct 15, 2006 at 2:12 PM
You are in the Hybrid Vehicles - Archived Discussions
This discussion is ARCHIVED. To reactivate the discussion, post a request in the Lost? Ask the Hybrids Host for directions! discussion.
What is this discussion about?
Honda Civic, Hybrid Cars, Sedan
#170 of 640 Re: Buy a $100K warranty yourself with the car and be covered [larsb]
Jul 01, 2005 (8:16 am)
Toyota may well have reported zero battery failures in its Prius's, but I would not believe it. I ran into a Prius owner at a campground in northern New England in the summer of 2003 and was asking him about his vehicle. It was one of the earlier model years, but I forget which. He said his battery pack failed during the warranty period and was replaced without charge by Toyota. It may be a rarity, but there are at least some failures.
#171 of 640 There are multiple kinds of "battery replacements"
Jul 01, 2005 (9:00 am)
Those Prius batteries are "modular" meaning individual battery modules can be replaced as required. There are other components involved too that the consumer might classify as "the battery." The control units and such, some of which might be attached to the main battery unit.
Replacing an "entire battery" is an extremely rare event. That would mean NOT that the individual battery modules have failed and CERTAINLY NOT that ALL of them had failed, but that at least one other component which is physically attached to the main battery unit has failed.
It's like when "any other battery powered device" fails - do you throw away your flashlight, or do you just replace the batteries? Cell phones? Batteries in the Prius are similar to that - modular.
It's not like it's "one big battery" and when that "fails" it gets replaced.
#172 of 640 Only one kind of battery replacement
Jul 01, 2005 (10:49 am)
"It's like when "any other battery powered device" fails - do you throw away your flashlight, or do you just replace the batteries? Cell phones? Batteries in the Prius are similar to that - modular."
Follow your analogy to the logicial end. When you replace any battery pack (like two or four AAA in a remote), the instructions say to replace all batteries. The Prius pack is modular because that is how the batteries are produced. I very much doubt that Toyota would recommend replacing individual modules, even assuming one could figure out which battery modules are bad. I think that the battery modules run in series, which tends to hide specific module failure.
#173 of 640 I follow you but here's the differece.....
Jul 01, 2005 (11:38 am)
The diff here is this:
One or Five "dead individual modules" in a Prius battery chassis is not likely to lead to a "declared failed battery" situation, because that situation is not likely to occur ( multiple individual modules failing, I mean.) These modules are rated for 200K miles !!
I have seen the number of modules that are in there, and there are a lot of them.
I'd bet the house that almost ALL of the Prius battery chassis replacements (all 5 or 10 of them out of 300,000 Priuses sold worldwide since 1997) have NOT BEEN because of "battery components" dying but another piece of the system that has needed replacement and they had to pull the battery chassis because of it....
We can never know that for sure, so it's pure speculation, but it's LOGICAL and EDUCATED speculation at least !!!
#174 of 640 lurching problem diagnosed and solved
Jul 01, 2005 (12:19 pm)
Thanks to all who helped - I posted the problem and it is the ERG valve. I'm over warranty but got Honda to fix it for free (otherwise about $475). Alerted national Customer Service that a lot of postings showed trend in cars around 50K miles - I think they may deal with this globally. My dealer's service department seemed prepped for it. No more lurching. I'll see if my mileage goes back up (fell from around 45mpg to 42 mpg around same time).
#175 of 640 Re: I follow you but here's the differece..... [larsb]
Jul 01, 2005 (1:15 pm)
One or Five "dead individual modules" in a Prius battery chassis is not likely to lead to a "declared failed battery" situation
Others have mentioned this exchanging individual cells in the battery. It would not be difficult to do that. However my experience with all types of batteries is that when one cell fails the others are soon to follow. If Toyota is changing just failed cells they are setting the car owner up for a big fall after the warranty is over. ALL types of battery cells deteriorate with age and use. If it was my hybrid and I had access to the battery, I would make some distinguishing mark on each cell. I would not trust Toyota, Honda or GM dealers to rebuild a failing battery string.
#176 of 640 Re: I follow you but here's the differece..... [gagrice]
Jul 01, 2005 (1:38 pm)
quote gagrice-"ALL types of battery cells deteriorate with age and use." -end quote
Yes, that is true. But there have NEVER been any reports of Prius battery replacements due to "battery old age" as far as I have read, and you know I have read a lot of data.
Any "hearsay" replacements of batteries I have heard about were not due to old age but to Toyota deciding to replace the module or the entire unit because of other types of problems.
Even that Canadian cab chap had no Old Battery issues after 160,000 miles....
#177 of 640 Re: I follow you but here's the differece..... [larsb]
Jul 01, 2005 (1:48 pm)
Like was mentioned, Toyota, Honda or none of the other manufacturers are going to give out information on what has failed in any car. They only do it when forced by a recall or outcry from owners. You keep mentioning old age. Most of the batteries in Prius are less than 2 years old. They did not sell very well until the Prius II came on the scene less than 2 years ago. None of the Prius in the US have reached the 8 year warranty. Though a few are past the 100k mark.
Speaking of Civic Hybrids. How would you know in your car if the battery was deteriorating?
#178 of 640 In the Civic it would be
Jul 01, 2005 (1:53 pm)
In the HCH, it would be indicated by the battery not charging fast enough or full enough based on past experience of knowing how fast and full the battery charges under normal circumstances. Driver/Owner experience. For example, I know that under normal circumstances, the battery will fully charge at highway speeds within 5-7 miles.
It would only be logical to assume also that the Honda Techies at the dealerships would have a way to test the battery charge capability.
Remember - there have been 300,000 Prius cars sold worldwide in the last 8 years. Batteries ARE deteriorating, and we have not heard hue and cry of upset owners. So I think all the "sky is falling" paranoia about the battery being a big issue is just that - PARANOIA.......
#179 of 640 Re: In the Civic it would be [larsb]
Jul 01, 2005 (2:06 pm)
sold worldwide in the last 8 years.
We do not have ANY data on those early Prius sold in Japan. The Prius has been in this country less than 5 years. Only a handful were sold prior to the 2004 MY. If the batteries were replaced under warranty on one would scream. It is the stuff that is not covered under warranty that we hear about. And being stranded on the highway when the car stalls. I don't think the battery is a big issue in CA where it has 10 years and 150k miles. That is a fair warranty. I would like to get a 10 year comprehensive warranty on my hybrid GMC. All they offer is 6 years.