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post #1 of 5 Old 01-29-2016, 12:39 PM Thread Starter
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Default New Prius owner - a few questions

Hi,


I just picked up my first Prius today, a 2001, from the local Toyota dealer. Owned by the same family since new, and a reasonable mileage of 90k. Appears to be in really nice condition, other than the clear coat flaking on the hood. It's always been maintained by the same dealer since new.


The daughter of the family most recently inherited the car, and due to not being able to afford the repairs, she decided to sell it. It was still at the Toyota dealer after being diagnosed with a 'bad battery', which she decided she could not afford to replace. I spoke to her, and she claimed that several warning lights appeared on the dash, and the car lost power.


Today, I went to the dealer with a trailer and new 12v battery (the dealer said that it had been sat for a while and was dead), installed it and drove it onto the trailer. No warning lights, funny noises etc. I have been playing about with the car all afternoon, driving gently up and down my drive etc, running on the traction battery, with the engine starting up when needed, and still no problems.


She also told me that the 'battery' was replaced already in 2013, which I assume to be the traction battery, which is why she didn't really want to go ahead with replacing it again.


Now, I have a feeling that she may be getting confused by the two different batteries.


Firstly, What would the symptoms of a bad 12v battery, and also what about the traction battery?


Secondly, is there a date somewhere on the traction battery so I can verify that it has indeed been replaced? I pulled the carpet and had a look, and I can see that the bolts holding the battery have been out before, but couldn't see any obvious date markings.


Anyway, sorry about the long post and any input would be appreciated.


Ben.
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post #2 of 5 Old 01-29-2016, 02:56 PM
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Firstly, What would the symptoms of a bad 12v battery, and also what about the traction battery?
Welcome. A bad 12 V often gives trouble codes pointing to a lot of DIFFERENT sub-systems scattered all over. A failing traction battery usually gives codes that point more or less directly to the HV battery.

Don't know about the battery date code.
It sure would be nice if you knew where the battery was replaced.

It sounds to me like you might have picked up a really good deal here......assuming that you got it below "blue book".

'17 Prius C-4
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post #3 of 5 Old 01-30-2016, 04:34 AM Thread Starter
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It was a very reasonable price, so even if there is a major problem, I won't have broken the bank.


Am I tied to Toyota as far as reading all of the codes, or can a cheap code reader do the trick too?


The daughter is sending me a package containing the history file of the car, so hopefully that can shed some more light on the subject of the battery.


Thanks
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post #4 of 5 Old 01-30-2016, 09:09 AM
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Am I tied to Toyota as far as reading all of the codes, or can a cheap code reader do the trick too?
I don't know. Typically you can READ the codes with most anything that is ODBII compliant but need the special model to set and reset things.

Having the codes is only half of the information; then you need a Toyota list of what the codes mean.

Having the 12 V disconnected to change it will usually reset all of the codes so just being able to drive it after that without any warning lights coming on is a really good sign.

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post #5 of 5 Old 02-01-2016, 01:42 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, so I received the package containing all of the cars documents and history, and the traction battery was indeed replaced in 2013 with a genuine Toyota one at the main dealer, so that's looking promising.


I have ordered a 'Fotga Mini VCI' cable from Amazon, so that should give me some insight into the battery health just to put my mind at ease.


Took the car for a spin this evening now I've got insurance organised, and so far so good. Did the neutral trick to clean the brakes off. Did a few hard accelerations (as hard as you can get in a Prius), and no warning lights, bad smells or noises.


So far it seems like I've picked up a bargain... very happy. I'll use it myself for a few weeks to see if any problems arise, and if all is OK, my wife is going to use it instead of her Yaris (Echo I think its called in the US).
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