Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!





The Great Hybrid Battery Debate

1161718192022»

Comments

  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Gary says, "We have not reached 9 years on the first gen Prius that had the batteries recalled. You do not have any statistics on how many of those batteries were replaced. I doubt Toyota would ever give that information to the public. The current Prius is barely 5 years old. Toyota will probably luck out as most people that buy them are high mileage drivers. The ones I will be watching are those that only put 10k miles per year or less. They will stretch the EPA/CARB warranty to the max. So father time has another 5 years to go."

    First of all, the Prius is now 11 years old, as the first ones were sold in Japan in December 1997, making them now 11+ years old.

    Second of all, I told you in the last post that the Gen I Prius "recall" was merely to reseal the battery terminals. They had nothing to do with the performance or failure of the battery.

    You are right about a lot of things Gary, and I like discussing things with you. But you are wrong about these batteries.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,023
    First of all, the Prius is now 11 years old, as the first ones were sold in Japan in December 1997, making them now 11+ years old.

    Kind of hard to prove that when Japan's average car is only 6.6 years old. I don't know the actual number of first gen Prius sold here. It had to be very small numbers. The real test will be when the big selling 2nd gen Prius starts to age. 5 years down and counting.

    This all started with my question of longevity on Li-Ion which has a HORRIBLE life span history in laptop computers. Cell phones, who keeps one more than 3 years? My last two laptops out of 6 I have owned were Li-Ion. My current one just passed 3 years and out of warranty. The battery does not last more than an hour now. It would go 4 hours when new. My first Dell laptop using Li-Ion went through 2 batteries in less than 3 years. These are Identical to the 6000+ AA cells in the Tesla. I look for the early innovators to start screaming in about a year from now.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Did you really miss out on all the battery management techniques that the carmakers use to preserve the life of the battery?

    Toyota Prius II Battery Pack

    Battery Pack Thermal Management

    "The purpose of a battery thermal management system is to keep the batteries operating within a desirable temperature range; prevent the batteries from exceeding a high temperature limit that can damage the batteries and/or reduce life; and maintain battery temperature variations to low levels to prevent highly imbalanced batteries. Pack imbalances can reduce performance and can also damage the battery and/or reduce life. Thermal management of the battery pack is typically accomplished with the combination of two approaches. First, a cooling/heating system is designed to extract/supply heat to the battery pack. Second, the battery controller adjusts the vehicle’s use of the battery pack based on the conditions in the batteries."

    These systems are nothing like the battery systems in cell phones, laptop computers or even Segways.

    'Yota would not warranty them for 10 years/100K miles if they were not confident that the batteries would last that long.

    Here is a PDF that talks about the Li-ion batteries in the test Prius:

    Read This All Ye Who Doubt Li-ion

    Here is info on how the Tesla system will avoid "early" battery failures
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,023
    'Yota would not warranty them for 10 years/100K miles if they were not confident that the batteries would last that long.

    They would not warranty them for 10 years and 100k miles were they not forced to do it by the EPA and CARB. And in the CARB states it is 10 years 150k miles.

    Reading about a battery and it performing valiantly for 10 years is not the same thing. We shall see how the auto companies deal with the 10 year warranty on the Li-Ion batteries. I would consider that a safe bet as I do with all the hybrids. Most people are not keeping cars 10 years. I just do not see any hybrid that would work for me on the market. So it is a non starter issue.
  • Is Chevron/Texaco holding the NiMh (large format) battery hostage? To suppress the EV in america? To hold the price of oil high? Did they conspire with GM (who sold contol of the patent for nimh to Texaco in last part of 90's) ? Was GM so frantically afraid of losing the gas car parts business because they make more on parts than on the new car sales ( similar to the inkjet printer scam in which they almost give you the printer because they know you have buy expensive ink forever more)? OUR EVIDENCE IS BELOW:

    Our small one time admittedly test with a small Li-Ion told us to stay away from them as they can't take the beating for very long . Also MIT was hyping there trailblazing drive across country using Li-Ion (hundreds of small ones soldered together).. I think they got as far as illinois before quitting. Basically you might remember that Ni-Mh was used in the EV1 and witnesses (users who leased it) say it went 100 to 130 miles at about 70mph. Toyota Rav4 EV's that survived the toyota recall *(some courts ordered toyota to sell the leased Ev's to the leasers ) are still on the road with the same nimh batteries. Also virtually every Hybrid is using NiMH , and why? Obviously the H car was hyped to distract us from the already great Ev's that were crushed by GM. Same for BioGas, etc. Notice how every year they keep saying " Next Year, the volt ev, phev's, blah blah blah, " Like a broken record and they have been doing that for 10 years!
    Its all a scam,, the biggest joke is that now GM and the others are getting Billions more when in fact they caused this whole economic mess, yes economies soar when energy (oil) is cheap).
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,023
    This is from a Hybrid specialty repair shop in San Francisco that replaces a lot of Prius batteries.

    Based on experience within our walls and in discussion with technicians across the country, we can fairly call Gen 1 Prius battery failures “common” and even “predictable.” The youngest we’ve seen served 130,000 miles, some make it past 200,000 miles. Overall we’ve found 150,000 miles a reasonable expectation of how long the packs will last.

    What the car needs is a new high voltage battery. There are three potential approaches:

    1.) Replace the battery with a new one from Toyota

    Despite prevailing rumor, new battery packs from Toyota are not unreasonably expensive. While they are a significant financial investment, they can be expected to last as long as originals, as they are brand new and OE grade.

    Given increasing number of Gen 1 battery failures, OE replacement packs are often backordered. Expect to wait 10-14 business days for delivery from Japan.

    Installation: $600
    New Battery Pack: $2,499
    Tax: $212.42

    Total: $3,311.42


    http://lusciousgarage.com/index.php/blog/gen_1_prius_battery_failure/

    This shop works on hybrids that are out of warranty. So they will have no solid figures on warranty battery replacements. I would say Toyota did their engineering well to have the batteries last the limits of the warranty.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    And they did even BETTER on the second gen Prius battery:

    Second generation Prius batteries are similar to the Gen 1’s design but chemically much improved; we have never seen a Gen 2 pack failure in our shop (though we have many cars with mileage exceeding 300k) and have only heard of a few isolated cases from dealer techs across the country. (These failures have been blamed on contamination during manufacturing and show up early in the car’s life.) To be fair, the Gen 2’s battery control software is also improved, which also accounts for extended pack life.

    Gen 2 Prius are far more common and used parts are much easier to obtain. The Gen 2’s modules are the same individual voltage (7.2) but fewer in overall number (28, for a nominal voltage to 201.6), so it takes two Gen 2 packs to build one replacement for the Gen 1. This also takes more labor. But the good news is that these packs can be purchased used for much less than the Gen 1’s and can also be expected to last as long as new ones, if not longer. (Pic of Carolyn working on a Gen 2 pack)


    You can even replace Gen 1 battery modules with Gen 2 battery modules.

    That's very cool.
  • Could gen 2 packs be used to power regular all electric ev? thanks
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,023
    There are much less expensive options. The battery in the Prius is about 90 lbs and may be good for 2 miles at most. You would need at least 10 to get you very far. The old Toyota RAV4 had 900 lbs of NiMH batteries and the cost was over $20k to replace.
  • Tell me the less $$ options , thanks.

    We found that that some ev cars like Zap Xebra Pk for instance , can go 25 miles (albeit at 45- mph) on just 6 high capacity 114amphour lead acid batteries. The prius 04+ packs have really just 28 modules weighing 1.04 kg each =~64lbs so 6 of them would 384 lbs. We were thinking that 6 packs could be used to replace the zap batteries and could double the mileage? What say you?
    FYI: High Capacity lead acids weigh about the same , and are a little less volume than prius batteries. The power in the 28 modules is slightly less at 104 amphours (7.2v x 6.5 ah x 28 = 1.32 kwhrs vs 12v x 114ah = 1.368kwhrs). Obviously the prius batteries lifetime is much greater being NiMh which is the only advantage / value in them. (The ev1 and rav4 ev nimh large format batteries are a differnent animal with much higher power density than prius prismatic types).
  • oops. mean to say replace only for same 25 miles range.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,023
    A couple things to consider. The Prius battery is about $2500. Toyota may not even sell them as they are in short supply. 6 of them would be $15,000, more than a Xebra sells for new. Second you would need a different charging system to avoid over charging the NiMH batteries. You can replace the lead acid batteries for a fraction of what just one Prius battery sells for. If you are converting a car to electric I would look into the NiMH that are offered from overseas mfg companies. You would do much better than buying from Toyota.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,023
    My pastor friend with the new 2009 Prius has a real problem. He was planning to take his new Prius to Hawaii where he will be ministering for at least two years maybe 4 years. Toyota leasing will not allow him to take it out of CA for more than 30 days. He can store it and take a chance the battery will be ruined in two years. Take it and not be able to register in HI, or just let it go back to Toyota leasing and mess up his credit. This would not be an issue with a non hybrid. It could be put in storage and not have a problem with not running for two years. Toyota leasing is not very receptive either. Something people should consider if you plan to lease. I always considered leasing a rip-off. Now I am sure of it. NO one wants to finance what is owed. He would have to come up with $8k to refinance. Any suggestions. I told him to leave the FOB on the seat in a bad part of town. I got a sermon for that idea.

    PS
    He loves the car and was looking forward to having it on Maui to save on gas.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Yes, here's a suggestion.

    Tell him to convince Toyota to let him take it to Hawaii.

    It does not hurt them one iota. They still get their money, and I bet they lease cars in Hawaii. He could cancel his "California lease" and get a new "Hawaii lease" when he gets there.

    Kinda silly to blame the hybrid technology. If it was an Avalon, Toyota would not act any different.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,890
    No, he wasn't saying that Toyota would act differently. He's saying that the friend would be able to store a non-hybrid vehicle for two years, no problem. But by putting a hybrid vehicle in storage for 2 years, you risk having battery issues.

    MODERATOR
    Need help navigating? kirstie_h@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.
    Share your vehicle reviews

  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Well, the simple solution is to get Toyota to let him take the car to Hawaii.

    Number two on the list would be give the keys to a friend, pay them minimal fee to go start it once every two weeks or something.

    There is nothing prohibitive about a hybrid battery that means it will "die" any faster if it's not used. Toyota states in the manual that if a Prius cannot be started after a long period of non-use, just call the dealer and they will get it going.

    Extended Storage

    Disconnect the small 12-volt battery.

    It is helpful to disconnect the small, auxiliary 12-volt battery on the driver side in the trunk. With it disconnected, there will no longer be a drain from the alarm system. (Make note of the radio buttons you have programmed. You'll need to manually restore them after reconnecting the battery.)

    Draining the 273.6-volt battery-pack while in long-term storage is never a concern. When you shut off the Prius, an electric relay is deactivated. So it isn’t even connected to the rest of the system until you turn the key again.


    and another:

    Long term Storage:
    A number of people have raised the question of long term storage and its effects on the 12V and HV (High Voltage) batteries in the car. I have had some direct experience in this area. "Sparky" has been left in an airport parking lot for 14 days with no problems. Nothing was done except to park and lock her. Because of our bicoastal life, we leave the car for extended periods. Under this circumstance I disconnect the 12V battery and leave the car in the garage. She has been left for as long as 100 days with no loss of HV energy as indicated by the battery icon. In all cases of a lengthy storage, there were no problems starting the car after the 12V battery was reconnected.


    Any car put into "long term storage" is better off getting started at the very least every few months. This is not new with hybrid cars.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,798
    " pastor friend with the new 2009 Prius has a real problem. He was planning to take his new Prius to Hawaii where he will be ministering for at least two years maybe 4 years. Toyota leasing will not allow him to take it out of CA for more than 30 days. He can store it and take a chance the battery will be ruined in two years. Take it and not be able to register in HI, or just let it go back to Toyota leasing and mess up his credit. This would not be an issue with a non hybrid. It could be put in storage and not have a problem with not running for two years. Toyota leasing is not very receptive either. Something people should consider if you plan to lease. I always considered leasing a rip-off. Now I am sure of it. NO one wants to finance what is owed. He would have to come up with $8k to refinance. Any suggestions. I told him to leave the FOB on the seat in a bad part of town. I got a sermon for that idea.

    PS
    He loves the car and was looking forward to having it on Maui to save on gas. "

    Have your friend check out buying out the lease. He may be able to arrange a decent price. Then he will own the car and can take it anywhere.

    I would not advise storing any car for 2 years, during which time you are making lease payments!
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,023
    Tell him to convince Toyota to let him take it to Hawaii.

    He spent the day with Toyota finance and they would not budge an inch. No it would not make any difference if it was a Tundra or Prius. EXCEPT. You can leave a Tundra parked for 2 years without fear of the hybrid battery draining and being destroyed. While it would still be covered there would probably be a hassle and waiting for a replacement etc. They will not let you take the car out of CA for more than a month under their lease plan. He talked to the guy on Maui and got the same story. The problem is getting it licensed in Hawaii. We thought about buying it. I just don't want a red POC Prius for a $24k payoff on the lease. That is what I can buy a new one for. He got into the lease because he is a very poor preacher. Not one of the mega church guys that drive a Mercedes. He wanted the economy for all the running to visit the sick in the hospital.

    My advice is be wary of Toyota finance. They seem to be crooks IMO.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,023
    I would not advise storing any car for 2 years, during which time you are making lease payments!

    I agree. Then I would never lease a vehicle. It is a giant rip-off unless you can write the whole thing off. This preacher hardly makes enough in a year to pay any taxes. He leased as it was $200 per month less and he was planning to finance the payoff after 5 years. Why he likes the rough riding noisy little beast is beyond me. But he likes it. I feel for him and would loan him the $24k except he cannot make that big of a payment if I did not charge him any interest for 5 years. No wonder I despise lending companies almost as much as our Congress and government.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,798
    "The problem is getting it licensed in Hawaii. We thought about buying it. I just don't want a red POC Prius for a $24k payoff on the lease. That is what I can buy a new one for. "

    The cost of the vehicle is a moot point: the lease is what is referred to as a "sunk cost", which has to be paid, and it would be much cheaper to simply pay the 24K and drive the vehicle, rather than

    1. Risk having the battery go bad and have to replace or pay for it at the end of the lease. Yes, HE would have to pay because he did not treat the car appropriately, and cars need to be driven.

    2. Paying lease payments on top of whatever transportation costs the minister has in HI.

    Actually, the car payments may not be bad if he goes with a 60 month payout - possibly similar to the lease payments.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,023
    The payments on $24k are about $500 a month for 5 years. He has a 5 year lease at $299 a month. He was not sure his payoff at the end. Typical pastor. Very trusting of people and easily duped or talked into things. The best thing would be to get out of the lease if Toyota will not allow them to take the car with them. If he had any money he would not be in this mess.
This discussion has been closed.