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Faulty 12 volt battery + possibly nuked electricals

Discussion in 'Gen 5 Prius Main Forum' started by Uhcoustic, Feb 21, 2024.

  1. Uhcoustic

    Uhcoustic Junior Member

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    Hello everyone, has anyone else been having issues with their 12 volt? My 2023 Prime XSE is currently dead in the shop indefinitely with a deceased 12 volt - dealer has no estimation on when a replacement will arrive. Problems started at around 10,000 miles; here's the chronological sequence of events.

    - Battery found to be somewhat low during 10k mile service appointment. No action taken.

    - Battery dies in a parking lot while car is on and parked (traction battery was not low.) Jumpstart required via Toyota roadside. Jumpstart successful.

    - Appointment with dealership to diagnose possible battery issue; they determine a faulty 12v (thought I don't think they tested the car itself) but do not have a replacement on hand. They also made no effort to ship one from dealerships that had one in stock, telling me to travel and get it myself. (Not possible, they were gone by the time I could make an appointment. No walk-ins on the weekend.)

    - I'm sent home with a faulty battery. A few days later it dies at 1 am when parked but electricals on, just like last time. It was coincidentally within a few hundred feet from the dealership. Toyota roadside assistance called; unable to jumpstart successfully. (Bonus: I discover that the hatch cannot be opened when the battery has truly no charge, so it's very difficult to access the 12v.)

    - The next morning I call to get it towed to the dealership. In order to shift the car to neutral, it has to be
    charged slightly - and the dude plugs in the cables backwards, reversing the polarity for a few seconds before he catches his mistake. He did this right after I pointed out the correct contact points. Resulted in a LOUD and constant horn sound. Either way, he got it into neutral after about ten minutes of working on it.

    - 5 days later, it's still at the dealership. They aren't working on the car until the battery replacement arrives, which is unknown. I suspect the reversed polarity might've caused additional damage which would keep the car in the dealership for even longer.

    To make matters worse, this dealership does not do loaner cars, only rentals through Enterprise. I am not old enough to qualify for one of those. This also applies to the rentals offered by Toyota's warranty, which I contacted Toyota about. As a result, I am currently entirely out of a car. Lovely. I commute around 400 miles per week for class and work, so it's really not ideal.

    I've heard of issues with the 12volt not maintaining charge during traction battery charging, but I don't think that's the issue - or at least, the only issue - here. I've never left the car charging for more than a couple days, and the last month and half has been charged and used every day. My commute also uses the engine for at least 10 minutes.

    I don't want to jump to extremes, but I'm looking into manufacturer buyback/trade-in options for my car. I don't want a different vehicle; I love this car, and I just want it to work. But this one unit has had other electrical oddities, and I'm losing a lot of my trust.

    Thanks for reading.

    TL;DR: Faulty 12volt battery has led to an unrevivable car kept in the dealership indefinitely for a replacement that's on backorder. "Professional" who towed my car tried jumpstarting it backwards, which may have destroyed electricals - don't know yet.
     
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  2. BiomedO1

    BiomedO1 Senior Member

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    The "dude" screwed you; pardon the pun. There's a jump point under the hood. Depending on where and how he reversed the polarity; will determine what he blew up. Hopefully it's just a few fuses and none of the CPU's. The tow company is on the hook for the insurance claim. How it effects your new car warranty is what I would be concerned about.
    I would also contact north American Toyota corporate to see if they can help. Lookup the BBB and yelp reviews of that dealership; you may be better off having it towed to another dealership for the required work.

    Good Luck....
     
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  3. Mr.Vanvandenburg

    Mr.Vanvandenburg Active Member

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    Walmart has them.
     
  4. Uhcoustic

    Uhcoustic Junior Member

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    I've been told that it's a special battery that is not sold elsewhere. I've also had trouble finding the specifics of the battery.
     
  5. Uhcoustic

    Uhcoustic Junior Member

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    He connected to the right points at the front - engine block and fusebox area. Just backwards, and all that. Closest other dealership is about 30 miles further down the road, but i'll look into it - thanks!
     
  6. Fenichel

    Fenichel New Member

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    There are some pertinent anecdotes on other threads, including Prime 2023 12V battery integrity on EV | PriusChat. In short, the Gen5 12V batteries are of a new technology, and many of them have failed and been replaced under warranty. The replacements are scarce. FWIW, mine failed after 3000 km.
     
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  7. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    is there information on this new technology somewhere?

    the same thing happened when the 2017 prime came out, many replacement batteries.
     
    #7 bisco, Feb 21, 2024
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2024
  8. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    have you contacted toyota customer service?
     
  9. Zeromus

    Zeromus Member

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    If the boost came from Toyota roadside accessed driver, then I'd hope Toyota is still on the hook to help sort it out
     
  10. Uhcoustic

    Uhcoustic Junior Member

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    Yup, they couldn't help me. They gave my dealership my info again, though, which caused them to reach out to me - but I haven't heard back in almost two days, so not holding my breath.

    I REALLY hope that's the case. It could be a super expensive fix.
     
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  11. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    that's about as bad a dealer as i have read on here.
     
  12. BiomedO1

    BiomedO1 Senior Member

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    I'm guessing it's a sealed AGM battery, since it got moved back into the passenger compartment of the car again. The gen4 was a common lead acid battery under the hood.
    If you do a search on reverse polarity; I believe someone here had done the same thing and just blew a few fuses and a hidden fuseable link on the bottom of the fuse assembly. If I recall correctly....

    BTW; this is the first time I've ever heard of a mechanic, much less a dealership try to turn a customer into a gopher - directing a customer go get the parts to repair a car that is still under THEIR warranty!! What the heck!!! The icing on the cake is, no loaner car? Has this dealer ever heard the phrase "customer service"? Granted this isn't a Lexus, Acura, Audi, MB, or BMW dealership, they should still offer you up something. Maybe a deeply discounted rental car; but that would put them under the gun to repair your car in a timely manner.
     
    #12 BiomedO1, Feb 21, 2024
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2024
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  13. rjparker

    rjparker Tu Humilde Sirviente

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    I know - it’s bad and a battery won’t fix it. The responsibility will be shifted to the guy who jumped it which will not be a dealer or Toyota corp employee.

    Hope you have some documentation of who actually did it and maybe witnesses. The tow company will advise their employee to deny he reversed polarity.
     
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  14. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Wow... Toyota can't find a 12v replacement battery for a brand new 2023 Prius? After the amount of money you paid for your car this is truly insane. You need an attorney to write a letter describing the damages they've caused for something that is their fault. Once the Stealership's lawyer reads your lawyer's letter things will change quickly.

    But for the moment, they think they can just ignore you because they think you're young and obviously haven't been upset enough. If I were you, I'd be on the phone demanding to escalate to supervisor or owner every single day and I'd have my attorney filing a tort claim in federal court. If you put enough pressure on them and don't back down you'll start getting the respect you deserve!
     
  15. Uhcoustic

    Uhcoustic Junior Member

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    I had someone with me at the time, but no evidence other than that. Toyota dealership has a note on my file about it, as I called them the day after to let them know. I have the toyota roadside case number, and a little bit of info given over text from the towing contractor.

    You're right, I've been a bit too pleasant. May demand something in person tomorrow if I can fit the time in my schedule. I have the bad reviews ready! lol
    It was so bizarre to hear them suggest I drive another 45 minutes to the next dealership that I didn't even say anything :cry: that was after waiting 3 hours for a simple diagnosis - and I was on schedule to the appointment! Crazy.
     
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  16. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    It's essential that you present yourself as the kind of person that's well educated on how to deal with these idiots. You've spent a huge amount of money on a car that they claim they can't fix because of something as stupid as a 12v battery. They could easily put a different 12v in there once the manager of the stealership knows that you trigger cost them more fees from the Stealerships lawyer just to respond to your claim.

    Sometimes if you have a lawyer who you're an acquaintance with they'll write a letter for $100... Also print up copy of state law related to selling a broken car... Looks like this law firm in your state specialises in this: Home - San Diego Lemon Law Attorney

    Also before you go in file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau online, as well as have a plan to report this to your state attorney general. You want to go in there fully loaded with every administrative remedy and don't take no for an answer. Become a really bad day for them because they deserve it!!!

    With the amount of money you've paid them a Lemon Law lawyer like the one linked to above will be eager to hit them hard...
     
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  17. Uhcoustic

    Uhcoustic Junior Member

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    Thank you for the advice! I'll start reading up on this as soon as I finish a midterm tonight.
     
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  18. Uhcoustic

    Uhcoustic Junior Member

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    Bonus pic of possibly the last time I'll ever see my beautiful boy
    ZBAfz19.jpg
     
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  19. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Think of it as a theatrical performance... Perhaps interrupt them and say I'm calling the best Lemon Law lawyer in the state right now! And if they try to talk to you tell them to shut up because you're on the phone.

    Most of all be very stern, but fair and kind so if your behavior is reviewed by a judge it doesn't come back to hurt you.
     
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  20. Sarge

    Sarge Senior Member

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    A friend of mine who got an XSE Premium in September recently came out of his house to a dead 12v and the car needed to booster, and seems to have been fine since. It’s been reported Toyota. I believe he said he is waiting on a replacement battery, but his car is still operational in the meantime.

    My Prime has been fine, however, when I went on a short trip of about 2 hours two weeks ago,I arrived and parked, the switched the car to Accessory mode, as I had a 15-20 min wait ahead of me. Within a minute or two, I got a popular on the MID saying “Low battery”, which I can only assume with a failing 12v battery… so of course I immediately put it back in Ready mode and all was fine.

    But there certainly appear to be issues with the Prime and the 12v..
     
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