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LexusRX 400h Hybrid Battery Failure



  • 1cinda11cinda1 Posts: 1
    yes, my battery was replaced @ 6 months in but now car is 4yrs old
    91K and the battery keeps going out often, luckily not while driving... eeeh gads, that is scary -
    I am demanding they change my battery this mon, I have taken it in 2x and told them to check battery, but they told me it was fine. ITS NOT fine, now that I have more ammunition from this forum, I can be more demanding. it is under warranty.

    time to dump this car :mad:
  • I had a similar problem, fortunately just after exiting a highway. My 2006 RX400h has just over 66000 miles on it. The inverter was replaced under warranty, but I could see the dealer's part of the bill - $8500!

    My question, to you and others who have had this failure is this:

    Do you (as I did, but am re-thinking) use the"B" shift position extensively?

    I was pretty pleased with myself that I didn't have any brake repairs until 60K. I'm now wondering if this puts an excessive load on the inverter system, and am just leaving it in "D" for now. I'd rather pay for brakes than an inverter!

    I'd like to take a survey of others who have had this failure, to see if this might be part of it. Not that it doesn't make it Toyota's fault, of course - but once we're out of warranty, if this is a weakness we should all avoid it...
  • I have a 400h. Second time this has happened. Dashboard lights come on, even headlights, locks all work, but 'Ready' light will not light up and therefore engine won't start. Battery checks out OK. Had car checked last time it happened and nothing could be found. Now it's happened again.
  • skycaptainskycaptain Posts: 33
    Dear Friends,
    Since these problems appear to affect the safe operation of the vehicle, I would suggest you go to the NHSTA website and file a report. If they get enough reports they will force a fix and or repair on Lexus. It is important that the National Highway and Safety Administration get these reports.
    Also check with your states "Lemon Laws". In many states, if a vehicle requires 3 or more repairs for the same problem the dealer has to replace or buy back the vehicle.
  • I'm researching inverter failures for 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid. Similar story to others here. A dangerous complete power failure while driving. 9K+ estimate for replacement. First hybrid after many Toyotas in the family. Thought we were doing the right thing, even with the higher up front cost. Bragging the DAY of the failure this car was the best we ever bought. This is not right. My guess is that the Lexus 2006 inverter is the same part? Does anyone know?
  • Please report you inverter failures as skycaptain suggests. Toyota refuses to give any information regarding these failures. Only consumer outrage will force them to respond.

    Office of Defects Investigation (ODI)

    Only takes a few minutes. Have your VIN number handy.
    Some of us have our vehicles at dealers waiting repairs so this DOES matter. Please report your failure even if it was covered by warranty. Don't let Toyota get away with this dangerous and costly defect.
  • rarm1rarm1 Posts: 2
    edited June 2010
    Just purchased the RX450h with the navigation system (ultra premium) and I have experienced what I believe could be problems with the hybrid and 12 volt batteries.
    First instance after acquiring the car, I started to set up some of the car functions through the navigation screen with the car on accessory/on. After a few minutes of setting up the various functions, everything went blank and could not start the car. However, after a few minutes, I was able to start the car. This happened on more than one occasion during the weekend.
    Second instance:Parked the car in the drive way, parking brake on, all power off; after washing the car with a pressure washer, including the inside of the mags, I could not start the car. Both 12 volt and hybrid indicated fully discharged after I finally got the car started. On the navigation system, which shows the status of power, the hybrid has only the two lowest bar on the graph, and the color was violet/mauve. Took the car for a spin, and everything appears to have returned to normal. Are those signs of something much serious. Looking forward hearing from others who may have experienced similar problems with the RX450h.
  • rarm1rarm1 Posts: 2
    Have you experienced any problems with your new Rx450h, and if so, what were they.
  • I've have found the VIN break for the change from the defective inverter to the new part. Before the break you may experience total power failure, engine, steering and brakes. After the break the new part does not have any failures I can find.
    Toyota 06 Highlander Hybrid 2wd - Ending in 60009725
    Toyota 06 Highlander Hybrid 4wd - Ending in 60019910
    Lexus 06 Rx 400h 2wd - Ending in 60002207
    Lexus 06 Rx 400h 4wd - Ending in 60036526

    My dealer did the right thing and brought my bill from $9000 to $1200, but how many owners are still driving these dangerous cars??
  • 2006 RX400h, 51k miles, live in Houston, TX. Driving 65-70mph on Hwy 290 on July 30 and my car completely shut down (exactly the same circumstances as others have described). Check Hybrid Sytem, Check VSC system lit up on the dash. Car shut off, steering was difficult, brakes worked slightly. I pulled off on an exit and stopped the car. The lights, radio, power windows, etc. were all still working but the car would not work. When I shut it off and turned it back on, the READY light came on for 1-2 seconds but the car never did start again. While waiting for the tow truck, I left the key on to run some AC but it drained the battery within 20 minutes. Just received word from the dealer that they need to replace the inverter and it is covered under warranty. My 4 year warranty on the car has expired but the Hybrid system has 10 year/100k mile warranty. Thanks to all others who posted. This site was a savior to me so i could talk intelligently to my Service Advisor.
  • colwencolwen Posts: 1
    edited August 2010
    I'm beginning to think I have the same problem.. I bought our 2006 rx 400h with only 6600 miles on it from the Lexus dealer. It now has about 60k on it.

    It started having starter battery troubles almost immediately. Had to be jumped if I left the four-way flashers on for a few minutes, and would not start occasionally, so I took it in several times to dealer and they said they couldn't replicate the problem, that it operated normally while it was in the shop. Finally, it wouldn't start in their driveway and they quickly put in a new small battery (the starter battery).

    It's been fine now for a couple of years, but last week it started acting funny, wouldn't start first try, and would tell me I needed to shift to "park" before starting, well, I was in "park"!! Then I jumped it and it ran fine a few days. Now it won't start unless I jump it. Am taking it in tomorrow.

    I'm curious, maryland john.... how did you come by the VIN break list? I'd like to walk in the Lexus dealer tomorrow AM, armed with as much ammo/info as I can. I don't want the same run around as I got in the past.... thanks
  • Driving off a stop light and the car just died. Check AWD - CVT - Hybrid system warning lights went on . Towed to dealer next morning and they called to say lucky it is under warranty ( I have 64000 miles , warranty is 70 k ) and it needs a new invertor. I have not seen bill but here it is $ 7 to $ 9000 Yikes ! This is a problem as it shakes my faith in Lexus Bought from USA to bring to Canada and relied on toyota - Lexus brand Will report to NHTSA and Canada Transport as this should not be happening and from what I can see the toyota lexus hybrid system needs a longer warranty !!!!
    Spread the word !!! Complain !!!
  • Kim, What year is yiur RX 400 ?

    Regards , Luke

  • Yikes! $9K for a single bad part on the RX 400h?

    Thought about buying an RX 400h, but now no way!

    Thanks for your info. Wonder if the Prius has same problem?

    Let us know if Toyota changes the design.

  • My RX400h failed last week with same messages - Check VSC / Hybrid System Failure. Thankfully the car was coming out of a parking space at the time. Dec 2005 model with 35000 miles. No power other than from 12 volt battery which rapidly drained. Was towed to Lexus by AA. Diagnosed as a Power Invertor failure (£2800 for parts, ex labour). Thankfully within the warranty period for the powertrain. Very disappointed that Lexus claim this was an unusual case - not so after reading this forum.
  • It was a 2006 lexus rx400h with 60,000 miles . The current inverter blew and the dealer would say exact amount but cost was in $9 to 12000 range. They did say it was replaced with an " Updated Inverter /converter unit " that has a metal body and is heavy duty. Clearly Toyota - Lexus knows this is an issue , ask them . Thank goodness they were decent and replaced it under the 100,000 hybrid warranty. Have not found any other issues with Lexus Hybrids but am keeping on the look out. I am very happy with the car but don't want to have an unreliable car. I did report to NHTSA.
  • voicedvoiced Posts: 8
    Whew! That's an expensive repair part! Glad to hear that Toyota took care of the problem and it's covered under their 100K mile drive-train warranty.

    I have seriously been considering purchasing a 400h (most likely one that is 3 to 4 years. But I have put it off because of concern with this problem.

    Thanks for making us aware that this problem exists. Hopefully Toyota will replace all of these $$$$ inverter/converters in future models. Wonder why it's not a recallable item?

    John in Sunny Southern Cal
  • Like many others on this site, my inverter has just 'gone' and the vehicle warranty only covers it to 60k and I have 70k on the clock - on a 2006 model...... Quote for the job including VAT and labour £3700..... the last time I had a quote for an auto "part" this expensive, I could drive it away! Just waiting to see if Lexus will "chip-in"..... I will let you all know how I get on!
  • I am having the same problems as all the above posters. My vehicle multiple times has had this scenario of randomly shutting down and displaying all dummy lights! with the OBD display reading "Check hybrid system", "Check AWD System", "Check Traction Control" with all warning lights on. The vehicle will have electrical power but motor will not crank or turn over. A few times I was able to disconnect negative battery terminal (to make it lose memory) and it worked. Recently it's happened several times in a short period with this past week several times in one week. The first time I brought it into lexus back in 2009 they said I simply "need a new battery". So I bought one and things were ok for about a year until it happened again. It happens when "seasons or temperature spikes suddenly". Very Odd. Lexus service is telling me to file an "insurance claim" just to begin the "diagnosis". They state they found 1/2" of water near the hybrid battery under rear seat with no source yet to be determined..I'm very unhappy! Will post as details unravel themselves!
  • voicedvoiced Posts: 8

    Please let me know what Lexus agrees to do to fix this problem. It sounds like a design flaw.

    My wife and I had decided on purchasing a low-mileage Lexus 400h but after hearing this we definitely will not purchase a 400h.

    Wonder if the Prius has this same problem? If anyone knows, please advise as that will be our next choice.
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