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Discussion Starter #1
Has any Prius owners on this forum had to replace their traction battery?

We had to limp mode the wife's Prius to the dealer over the weekend, and received the call today that we need a new traction battery. We are weighing our options, and didn't want to overlook anything. Appreciate any ideas.
 

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A coworker of mine swapped out her gen1 Prius battery. She said it cost $5k but Allowed her to extend the life of her car another 5-7 years. To her it was cheaper than a new car payment. But now she has a deposit down on a tesla model 3, about when the Prius will be ready for a second traction battery replacement.
 

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While the members of this forum have proven exceedingly accommodating, friendly, and helpful, I'd encourage you to refocus your request for advice to Priuschat.com Having owned three Prius' prior to our Volt(s), I can tell you that members over there are just as knowledgeable and passionate about their cars as we are here. You'll almost certainly get more and likely better feedback there.

I do know that the few problems that have surfaced with traction batteries (gen II/III) have largely been able to be addressed by replacement of the offending cell, as opposed to a complete replacement. Before you let the dealer play parts changer, request trouble code info, the voltages of all the cells in the pack, and anything else members on this forum and PC tell you need. Gather that and you might find that you can turn a several thousand dollar 'fix' into a few hundred dollar 'repair'.
 

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It's not hard to test the prius battery for bad cell and change it if that is the problem. Cells are about $30-$40 around internet...
 

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While the members of this forum have proven exceedingly accommodating, friendly, and helpful, I'd encourage you to refocus your request for advice to Priuschat.com Having owned three Prius' prior to our Volt(s), I can tell you that members over there are just as knowledgeable and passionate about their cars as we are here. You'll almost certainly get more and likely better feedback there.

I do know that the few problems that have surfaced with traction batteries (gen II/III) have largely been able to be addressed by replacement of the offending cell, as opposed to a complete replacement. Before you let the dealer play parts changer, request trouble code info, the voltages of all the cells in the pack, and anything else members on this forum and PC tell you need. Gather that and you might find that you can turn a several thousand dollar 'fix' into a few hundred dollar 'repair'.
Or we could suggest dumping the Prius and get another volt. My volt lifetime is at 85 MPG which blows away any Prius - I know, I know the way the volt computes miles isn't exactly fair, but it still wins out in total cost of ownership.
 

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There are also a few 3rd party sites online that can replace the battery, for what appears to be much lower prices (and often even longer warranties). I don't own a Prius so I can't speak to quality, etc, but wanted you to know it's an option.
 

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The traction battery in my wife's 2010 Prius died about a month ago, 100 miles from home. She managed to limp to the nearest Toyota dealer. (This is indirectly why I have a Volt today!)

The problem was that the fan that pulls in unfiltered air from the passenger compartment to cool the battery, had become blocked with stuff that it had pulled in along with the air; no fan = overheated battery. Clearly a design flaw -- especially since there was a TSB that installed a cleanable filter! -- but Toyota wasn't going to fix the battery for free, oh no.

The dealer originally wanted $4600 to replace the battery, because they intended to wait until Toyota refunded the core charge to them before refunding it to us. We negotiated them into not charging us that up front. Total replacement cost: $3400. Warranty is for a piddling 12 months / 12,000 miles.

We decided to have the battery replaced because the dealer would only give us about $3500 for the car as it sat. Since it is high mileage and paid for, it was worth more to us repaired and running than as a trade in on anything else. Had it died at home, we would have had more options (our trusted independent mechanic + a remanufactured battery would have saved us about $1000 or so) but being so far from home we were pretty much at the dealer's mercy. To their credit, they were polite, responsive and helpful, applied all pending recalls and software updates free of charge, and did not gouge us on the repair; our local Toyota dealer would have charged about the same.

We did look at a Volt while we waited for the repair, and as a result we did decide to BUY a Volt (2013 base, Blue Topaz Metallic!), but we traded a different car for it. For my wife's long highway trips, the Prius is more economical.

The Toyota dealer will not install a remanufactured battery. If the dealer is your only option, you're looking at spending about $3500 to get your car working again (Toyota: "You know all that money you saved on gas by having a Prius? We'll take it now. Thanks.").

You might consider selling it as it sits and putting the money towards a good used Volt, if that would work for you. As stated above, it wasn't ideal for our situation.

I concur with Jbumps about heading over to Priuschat for more Prius-specific information.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for all of the good advice.

I did head to the Prius forums first. I'm quite familiar with the Dorman battery, and other options.

However, the car is already at the dealer, so options are limited. I think we will end up choking down the $3,400 replacement battery. Yep, there goes all of the money we saved on gas.

Can't seem to get the wife interested in a Volt. Even offered to 'give' her mine. She has her heart set on a new Prius Prime next year. We'll see...
 

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It looks like you have made your decision, but I thought I'd throw this one out for ya. My father in law had to replace his 2007 Prius traction battery and used http://greentecauto.com/hybrid-batteries

They showed up to his house, did the install there, and I believe he still saved about $1k over the dealer price. This was a year or two ago, so prices may have changed. I think the closest greentec to you is Las Vegas or Los Angeles.

Whatever you decide, I hope it works out well for you!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
It looks like you have made your decision, but I thought I'd throw this one out for ya. My father in law had to replace his 2007 Prius traction battery and used http://greentecauto.com/hybrid-batteries
Yes, I did run across Green Tec Auto in my searching for solutions. I did not call them because, (a) we need the car on the road ASAP, (b) the Prius is already at the dealer, and (c) GTA did not have a location in Tucson, or even in Phoenix. The last one really puzzled me because, (1) Phoenix is the 6th largest city in the US, and (2) it is one of the hottest cities in the US, and we all know that heat is hard on batteries. So, you would think that this would be an ideal market for a hybrid battery reseller, unless, of course, their batteries do not hold up well in extreme heat.
 

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I used to active on Priuschat and recall someone finding a junkyard battery for $700. With over one million Prii sold there are plenty of salvage parts available.
 
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