Last post on Oct 02, 2012 at 8:01 PM
You are in the Toyota Prius
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Prius, Hybrid Cars, Hatchback, Sedan
#495 of 674 2008 Prius challenges
Jun 17, 2008 (5:51 pm)
I simply LOVED my Prius until it hit 5000 miles and we took it on a little 2300 mile trip. I bought it new in January. In April and May I noticed some strange fill ups. My car averages 47mpg. One tank was down to one bar at only 300 miles ... really bad mileage that tank. One fill up showed 55mpg ... boy was I excited! The next "top off" before the road trip was not correct for this car. I could only get 1.7 gallons in the tank and had driven 132 miles ... hummmm. Off we headed onto the road trip. First stop, we filled up ... gauge showed full ... drove 83 miles and had only four bars left on the fuel gauge. Had fill up issues the entire road trip ... no matter what time of day, the temperature or how SLOWLY gas was put into the tank. On the way home the mileage on the tank was 442 with four bars left ... something was definately amiss. Contacted Toyota technicians and Corporate about the tank/bladder issue. Long story short ... this is the first car I have owned since 1976 that I cannot fill up the tank easily ... do not know if the tank took 6 gallons or 10 gallons ... strangest thing of all is that Toyota Corporate notes that this is normal ... the bladder system only allows an average of 6-7 gallons a fill up ... even if you are on fumes! Long story short ... I not pleased with this issue ... plus I spoke with three other Prius owners in my area and their cars will NOT drive in the snow ... boy am I looking to see if my car also has that design flaw ... I have read that many other owners have experienced these issues ... after I bought the car of course ... maybe I am the only person that has a Prius
#496 of 674 Same boat..
Jun 17, 2008 (6:58 pm)
I'm in the same boat.. just this last fill-up was totally full.. overflowed a bit out the spicket. I have driven 450 miles still have 2 bars left - never driven this far before, normal for me is 420 miles then need a fill up.. but I suspect I'm only putting in 10 gal.. certainly not 12 gallons (except for the last fill). I did not see the 'shut off' problem until recently, last 2 tanks. I am disappointed also in this issue also.
#497 of 674 Gas Tank Level
Jun 17, 2008 (7:30 pm)
I have the gas guage problem also. I drove for 300 miles with the guage on two bars through some back roads. I was late for a meeting and the only gas station on the way did not take a credit card. It was quite worrysome to think that I could run out of gas--and no bars on my cell phone either. When I did fill up, it only took 6 gallons. Just another poorly designed feature on a sub-standard sub-compact.
Oh, for my old Honda Civic. It was tight quarters to drive but I constantly got 4l per 100k (60+ mpg) with a top speed of 105 mph, which was what I normally drove on the German autobahn. I had over 250,000k on it when I left Germany, a great little car--almost as good as the old Studebaker Champion.
#498 of 674 Re: Cheese with the Whine
Jun 17, 2008 (7:31 pm)
As I read through the posts, I feel as though I live on another planet. I bought my 2007 Prius with 7,000 miles on the odometer, now three thousand miles ago. I experience no problem with fuel economy, bladder control, spaciousness, comfort, or any other issue with my beloved Prius. The men at work all think that I should be a Toyota dealer because of my praise. Several have purchased high-efficiency vehicles in recent months, more Toyotas than any other brand. My vehicle has never slipped or failed to obtain excellent traction in deep snow, despite having the original factory radials. The overall fuel economy rose from 48 MPG in winter to an average of 54 MPG in summer. [For more information, type into a search engine, "Kim Fenske drives a bus in Colorado" which brings up an AP story on the Prius.] The future is so bright, I gotta wear shades.
#499 of 674 It's annoying....
Jun 18, 2008 (7:28 am)
..but there's WAY too much concern about the fuel bladder issue.
My guess is that they will do away with it on the Next Gen simply because of the annoyance it causes. Also the TCH and the HH don't have a bladder.
Now that being said, ignore the damn thing. It's a minor annoyance at worst. Common sense should prevail. If you drive 100,000 miles or 200,000 miles and you keep accurate records of the fuel you purchased and the miles you've driven you will come to this unstartling conclusion....your fuel economy will be about 47.5 mpg over the life of your ownership.
Obsessing over one tankful vs another is an an extraordinary waste of emotion. In looking at the Greenhybrid.com database and the EPA databases of owners reporting their fuel economy the middle 50% of the population is right at 47.5 mpg, Some are significantly higher and some as much as 15% lower, but that's a normal distribution curve of any population.
Specificially regarding the fuel bladder issue if one tank seems to be far 'too short' then common sense should come into play. If a driver has driven 450 miles and used 9-10 gal of fuel and the auto shutoff clicks off at 2 gallons then obviously the tank is nowhere near full. It may take some 'babying' of the nozzle to get it to take another 6 or 7 gallons but it will do it. Common sense. You've used 9 gallons, you need to put about 9 gallons back into it no matter what the nozzle says.
What annoys some drivers obsessing over their tank-by-tank results is that underfilling seems to inflate the fuel economy of the prior tank; 450 miles driven but 'only' 7 gal pumped gives the extra ordinary result of 64+ mpg...'Hot D***!!! Am I good or what!!' However after driving only about 350 miles on the current 7 gallon fillup and then filling to a normal 10+ gallons seems to drop the fuel economy into the low 30 range. 'Stupid defective car!'
However combining the two tanks..............800 miles / 17 gallons = 47+ mpg. What a coincidence.
In the long term one or two tanks just don't matter.
#500 of 674 Re: It's annoying.... [kdhspyder]
Jun 18, 2008 (8:19 pm)
That's your take. It doesn't apply to others. It isn't a mileage satisfaction issue, it's a dependable long range reliability issue. The tank is so small already -- the gages are pessimistic and if you are traveling long distances, as through west Texas, you have to be looking for fuel stations at nearly every berg, if you are not familiar with the area. I'd like one, but won't be getting one until the fuel tank system will exceed 500 miles of cruise range, with comfortable reserves. What the book says is the capacity is what is required and the gaging system should reflect that value. In town, it's no big deal to stop at one of many stations, but on the road, it's not acceptable to me, or many others, not to have a reliable fuel quantity. -- gr
#501 of 674 Re: It's annoying.... [gfr1]
Jun 18, 2008 (9:29 pm)
kdyspyder ... gfr1 has it TOTALLY correct!!!
This tank discussion has NOTHING to do with fuel economy. This is a SAFETY issue and HAZARD to the driver, passengers in the Prius and other drivers if the car runs out of fuel! So those of you that do not understand this serious safety issue, please quit telling the owners that ARE concerned to be happy that they get great fuel ecomony ... again fuel ecomony is NOT the issue here!!!
A driver HAS to know that when a fuel gauge registers FULL that means FULL, not 1/2 a tank of gas, not 3/4 tank of gas ... but a FULL tank of gas.
Not everyone drives in urban areas. This is a great little around town and short trips car. This is not a dependable or reliable long road trip car ... in rural areas where gas is not avaible 24/7! (Which is exactly I bought this Prius for ... I thought ... hey 10 gallons 45/mpg - boy - I can drive 450 miles/tank with gas to spare ... NOTTTT going to try that!)
The faulty tank design along with the faulty gauge ... makes this car a safety hazard. (I have had my fuel gauge "fixed" three times ... it still does not work!)
Anyway ... SAFETY is paramount ... Consumer Reports was VERY interested in this gas "tank" design flaw, expecially with Toyota Corporate OPENLY admiting the flawed bladder design, that 6-7 gallons is a "normal" fill up, not the 11.9 noted or 10 or 9 ... and that there is NO fix for this fuel tank safety hazard ...
#503 of 674 Re: It's annoying.... [priusdar]
Jun 19, 2008 (9:10 am)
For both responders.... Where's your common sense?
You're vehicle will get about 45-50 mpg on every tankful. Those are the stats.
OK you drive 475 miles and the last flashing bar comes on saying fill up. This means that you've used about 10 gallons of gas. That's common sense.
So you go to the pump and it shuts off early at 6 gallons....so you add 3 or 4 more gallons. Helloooo, you've just used 10 gallons going 475 miles. You need to put 10 gallons back in it. This is common sense.
C'mon people common sense overrides everything else. At 79000 miles I've had a few 'early shutoffs' even after adding 1-2 gallons. Did I think that somehow magically those 2 gallons filled the tank??? No I just added 8-9 more gallons. Common sense.
Or...you can continue to complain and whine about something that's so minor it's laughable. You use 9 gallons you have to put 9 gallons back in. What's so hard to figure out about that?
Jun 19, 2008 (9:53 am)
Comment: This is a SAFETY issue and HAZARD to the driver, passengers in the Prius and other drivers if the car runs out of fuel!
Reply: In response to concerns about fuel capacity and safety, I operate my vehicle in very remote areas under severe environmental conditions. As a career driver, I take precautions to ensure my safety with any vehicle.
Whether driving in the flatlands of Texas or the summits of Colorado, I recommend that an operator take rest breaks more frequently than a full tank of fuel. With a rest break every 4 hours at a safe 60 MPH, an operator travels 240 miles. At a more frequently fatal crash speed of 70 MPH, that means 280 miles. Even at 300 miles, that is associated with 6 gallons of fuel. Fill the tank slowly, patiently, and there is no problem with being unable to add 6 gallons of fuel and getting out of the vehicle to circulate oxygen to the brain to ensure safe operation of the vehicle.
Furthermore, if you are concerned about safety, then you certainly always travel with emergency food, clothing, a sleeping bag, water filter, water bottle, cell phone, first aid kit, extra battery jump kit and 12 volt power source, air pump, magnesium fire starter, knife, multi-functional tool, maps, GPS, LED trail light, yellow strobes or fusies, and other gear to be prepared for your personal safety in the event of any mechanical failure or environmental condition. I do. I have never needed my emergency gear on the road, except to help others less prepared than me. I use my gear regularly on wilderness trails. I always have it in my vehicle. I know people who have died without it. If you need a list of survival gear that should be in your pack, refer to: Greatest Hikes in Central Colorado, pages 44-46.