Last post on Feb 11, 2013 at 3:59 PM
You are in the Toyota Sienna
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Toyota Sienna, Electrical, Lights, Van
#89 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [northbrook4]
Jan 20, 2013 (6:44 pm)
Hey Northbrook4...I just started searching on behalf of my son, he has an '11 Sienna and the battery's getting drained, so I thought I'd do some online searching for others with the same problem. Caveat...they got an after-market remote start system installed and I suspect the problem MAY lay therein, but they've got an appt. at the Toyota dealership this week to get it diagnosed/fixed. I'll post here any solutions they discover.
#90 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [honyoker]
Jan 22, 2013 (8:11 pm)
Thanks honyoker, we don't have an engine starter. We have the van back and the dealer couldn't find any issues. We even had them keep it over the weekend to see if it would drain. Even with zero degrees overnight it started. The service manager did admit that this was not the first complaint on this issue with newer loaded sienna's......good luck!
#91 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [northbrook4]
Jan 23, 2013 (4:22 pm)
We have also had similar problems with our 2008 Toyota Sienna. I would certainly appreciate hearing any ideas anyone may have. We've been through 4 or 5 batteries and the car is so unreliable that my wife will no longer drive it.
#92 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [jkozachek]
Jan 23, 2013 (5:49 pm)
If your battery is draining and you went to Autozone or similar places and they tell you nothing is wrong with your battery, then it might be the alternator. You can always have autozone or Oreilly check your vehicle to see if they can diagonize the problem. It is free!
#93 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [honyoker]
Jan 23, 2013 (6:24 pm)
Update today 1/23...the dealership (whom I trust, they're VERY knowledgeable, thorough, been with them for years, I know the service writers, etc. etc.) said they could not find anything wrong with the battery or diagnose any problem or defect in the van, so we're still hanging. They did put a new battery in at no charge.
The next things we'll look at are:
#1. When I went to my son's house to get the van to take it to Toyota, I found one of the little ceiling-mounted courtesy lights on, right above where the 2 year old sits in his booster seat. THAT would do it, but he wasn't big/tall enough to get to that light when they had the first battery drain issue 6 months ago. Toyota put in a new battery at that time.
#2. I'm going to try to find a meter that I can hook-up at the battery to show how much current is being drawn from the battery at any given time when the engine is turned off. There will be some parasitic draw what with the computers in it and I'll find out from Toyota if there's a standard range of amp-hours that they expect. Then I'll be able to tell if there's a greater draw, hopefully even if it's intermittent, and go from there.
I'll post anything I come up with .
#94 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [northbrook4]
Jan 23, 2013 (6:47 pm)
Another update, found link title
It also refers to 2 TSB's that might apply. I'm going to check if they apply to junior's van and if the Toyota guys were aware of these.
#95 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [honyoker]
Jan 24, 2013 (6:14 am)
I'm going to try to find a meter that I can hook-up at the battery to show how much current is being drawn from the battery at any given time when the engine is turned off.
Unfortunately, this is not an easy task. Ammeters need to be in SERIES with the circuit in order to read current draw. If you simply put this at the battery terminal, you will subject the meter to the full several hundred amp draw of the starter. Tough finding a meter that can handle that, yet still read fine scale milliamps for an overnight test. Same with a shunt type arrangement that's typically used for starter motor testing.
The better way is to not include the heavy wire that goes to the starter motor, and only tap into the wiring that goes to the underhood junction box and beyond. Now at least you keep the peak current down below 100 amps (below 50 if you are careful what you turn on in your testing).
What you want to avoid is any meter arrangement where you have to break the circuit in order to insert the meter, as this interruption will no doubt change the very nature of what you are trying to test. For instance, if it's a subsystem on-board computer issue and you turn it off and back on, it might not now respond as it might have thru the course of a normal engine shutdown.
As you are probably aware, there are certain systems that act in a 'stepdown' mode after shutdown. Some things don't go to sleep for 20 minutes or so. Other things, like the Evap Monitor (an OBD-II test), don't come alive until approximately 5 hours after shutdown. Unless you put a chart recorder on the ammeter, it's unlikely you will see all that is going on.
#96 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [fibber2]
Jan 27, 2013 (11:01 am)
Hey fibber2, thank you very much for the head-up's.
Here's my plan for the ammeter...all testing to be done with the engine off, disconnect the negative battery terminal, apply the contact probes of the ammeter to get a baseline amps reading. If things are working correctly, there should be a minimum specified/acceptable range of draw for the computer(s) as long as nothing unexpected is pulling current. I'll get a idea of that baseline from the Toyota techs.
If the draw is greater than it should be, we start individually pulling fuses and cateloging the readings for each one, hopefully narrowing down the circuit that's affected.
And yes, I'm aware of the evap monitor and the "step-down" modes (i.e. some Ford trucks have 30 minute step-downs), and planned on having the van shut-off and untouched for an hour before we start.
Again, thanks so much, and any other thoughts and advice are appreciated. Regards, honyoker
#97 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [honyoker]
Jan 27, 2013 (7:29 pm)
Update: After getting the all clear (Battery, Alternator & slow drag) from the Dealer last weekend I was especially cognizant to make sure all lights were off this week and that the fans and stereo were turned off before I turned off the engine. Van started struggling to start by thursday and by the time we tried to start the van up on Saturday morning it was dead yet again. I only drive about 3.5 miles one way to drop off kids and head to work so I don't know if I'm just not giving the alternator enough time to re-charge the battery?....Still Frustrated and starting to wish I had bought the Honda.
P.S. My dealer did test to see if there was any battery draw after it was shutdown and mentioned that a certain draw was normal and that my van was in the normal range.
#98 of 102 Re: 2011 Sienna Battery being drained [northbrook4]
Jan 28, 2013 (5:49 pm)
Depending on the exact conditions of those cold starts and that short 3.5 mile drive, you may indeed be guilty of taking out more than you are putting in.
A cold start load could pull up to 400 amps. Accepted, it's a brief duration at that draw rate, but it's from a chemical conversion and not an unlimited current source.
While your alternator may be rated at a lofty 130-150 amps, that assumes the engine is spinning at 2k RPM or so. If it is a low speed drive with some stop & go, and you have lights and fans running, you might not be putting much back into the battery at all. Plus, given that you have to put back something like 2-3X or more to equal what you took out (energy conversion efficiency), you might be running in depletion mode all the time.
Experiment. Drive a few extra miles each night before coming home. Some high speed driving would be a plus. Do this for a week and see if things are any better.