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Auris hybrid flat battery

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Hi there. Apologies if this question is a frequent one - I did search through a few pages of this forum.

My 2016 Auris hybrid is dead on my drive, having only been driven a couple of supermarket trips since the lockdown began in March. The alarm isn't on, the doors don't respond to the key buttons, and once I get in with the physical key the start button doesn't do anything. I know the car has two batteries - the hybrid Battery under the bonnet and the 12v Battery in the boot. I'm not sure which Battery does what, but presumably both are discharged..? Can they car start without one?

What's my best bet? Jump start then go for a drive? Would a Battery charger do anything (and if so, what do you recommend)?

Thank you for any help!

Adam

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Oh God, I just noticed my phone corrected Auris to Aureus ... sorry ... 🤦‍♂️

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Hi,  The traction Battery (the big one that drives the car along, that has a display on the dash) will be fine.  You have a problem with the 'normal' 12v one in the boot.  Unfortunately you can not easily open the boot to get to charge it, because the boot has an electrically driven lock.  You can get into the boot by lowering the back seats, and gaining access to the inside of the hatch door, to manually undo its lock, but this is awkward, unless you enjoy such challenges. (All these procedures are listed in the full owner's manual, available for download, for free, from the Toyota GB website, by the way)

But, if you open the bonnet, there is a big black fuse box that sits beyond the passenger side headlamp.  If you lift/remove the cover via its front-mounted latch/tang, there is a narrow red plastic cover towards the back of the box.  Unclip it so it pivots up, revealing a sizeable metal connector.  This exists to allow you to jump start the car.  Use this positive connection and any earth/chassis point you care to choose (one of the zinc-plated suspension top nuts is very close by, or a substantial shiny part of the engine or the chassis will do) as the negative connection.

Connect your jump leads to these, obviously making sure you connect positive to positive (red to red), and negative (black) lead to ground/chassis/engine block mentioned.  (In actual fact, it is good practice to put the black lead on last, and off first, when finished, to reduce the risk of an accidental short circuit.)

This will allow you to put the car into 'ready' in the normal way, which will begin to charge the car 12v Battery even when it is not moving, or the petrol engine is not running, providing the car is in 'Park' position, as displayed on the dash. The boot lock can then be opened to access the Battery directly, if required.  It is quite possible that some error lights will show on the dash at this point, these should go off when the car is driven in the normal fashion, it is not a cause for concern, given the flat Battery.

A short journey will also possibly get the Battery into a working state, but ideally the Battery needs charging overnight, preferably with a charger that can be used with an AGM type car Battery, which your 12v Battery is. This type of charger is not essential in the first instance, any car charger will get you out of this problem. 

Or just go for a long drive (do you have relatives in Durham?, which is OK in the lockdown, apparently).

In your car, the hybrid Battery is under the back seats, by the way, but this makes no difference to this problem.

  • Haha 1

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Thank you very much Gerg for this very detailed reply. You're right the manual does give instructions - I downloaded the wrong manual first time but have the right one now. If I got a Battery charger, would you recommend any particular one? Presumably I would need to get in the boot for that - it wouldn't charge from the jump start connector under the bonnet?

I do have relatives in the north, though not Durham, but I'll save visiting them until my wife and I are thoroughly symptomatic. That is, apparently, in line with government rules!

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You are welcome!

The CTEK MXS5000 (£65 ish) is very popular, it seems very well made, Swedish design, made in China.

Just last week, a poster recommended an Amazon supplied 'Maypole' branded one at around about  £30, that would do a broadly similar job.  Maypole, if I remember correctly, have been making/selling car accessories for decades. The Amazon reviews were quite good, but afraid I don't recall the exact model.  It's on this forum, somewhere!

If you can wait until they come back into store (every 4 to 6 months, usually), then Lidl sell/sold one for £13.99, their 'Ultimate Speed' brand, which was very decent value for money and has a built in voltmeter, but do you want to wait?  That one had a three year guarantee as well, if you kept the receipt.

None of these will charge faster than the others, but if there was a mains glitch, the CTEK will resume afterwards by itself, The Lidl will need it's 'mode' button pressing again, but this is a small point.

I have used the under bonnet jump-start point to charge our car, I am not aware of any risk with using this.  Perhaps someone else has some thoughts on this - I would be interested to hear.  Disconnect the charger before you attempt to start the car though!

There are some horror stories about folk using their Toyota hybrids to jump start other people's cars, sometimes expensive electronic damage follows, best to politely decline to do so.

Your 12v Battery is covered by your 5 year Toyota warranty, but some dealers charge a fee to find out if they are actually defective to the Toyota defined standard, sometimes this is 1/2 an hour's labour, but at 4 years yours should still be good.

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3 hours ago, redredredredred said:

Hi there. Apologies if this question is a frequent one - I did search through a few pages of this forum.

My 2016 Auris hybrid is dead on my drive, having only been driven a couple of supermarket trips since the lockdown began in March. The alarm isn't on, the doors don't respond to the key buttons, and once I get in with the physical key the start button doesn't do anything. I know the car has two batteries - the hybrid battery under the bonnet and the 12v battery in the boot. I'm not sure which battery does what, but presumably both are discharged..? Can they car start without one?

the hybrid / traction Battery is under the back seat what your have seen under the bonnet is the invertor

this changes the voltage from one voltage to another voltage depending if it is charging the Battery or powering the motors,

have a look on the panel under the back seat on the passenger side you will see a vent this is for the cooling fan for the hybrid / traction Battery.

both batteries need to be charged the 12v Battery powers up the computers in the car and lets you get to the ready state then the hybrid Battery takes over

this is one that starts the car, charges the 12v Battery and powers everything else i.e. the aircon system,

the hybrid Battery wont be the one that is flat .

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If it's of any interest, a previous thread on Battery chargers is here, the 'Maypole' Battery charger is mentioned:-

And, I have just removed the insides of our car for this thread, so you can see exactly where the hybrid Battery lives, and what it looks like on an Auris.  It's immediately to the right of the big red safety switch - a large, rectangular grey brick, underneath a full-width horizontal metal stamping:-

IMG_7116_tn.thumb.jpg.695a02fd2f2998cf731c71c2f481157e.jpg

Actually, and I'm making this completely crystal-clear now, this is a picture I got off the internet.  You must have misunderstood what I had said earlier - I mean, my inbox has been playing up. 

Does a job in politics now await me?!  Surely, yes!   :-)

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Hi everyone,

Just noticed this thread.

I have a 2018 Auris Hybrid and am having serious Battery issues with this car.

Way back on the 11th May I came out to start the car and...Nothing. The screen gave me a computer warning to go straight to a dealership. As I had TRA (Toyota Roadside Assistance) I gave them a phone but the recovery mechanic could not fix it and arrange for it to be uplifted. 
But the showroom/Service Dept was shut for the foreseeable...

Car sat in the drive until the 25th when the service dept finally reopened, and after another call to TRA the next recovery mechanic found out that it was a flat Battery 😖😖and got the car started.I took it for a run to the dealership and booked it in for its 24 month service.

It got it’s service on 5th June and the Battery was fully charged but ...guess what..I went out on Monday 15th and the Battery was flat again.In the 10 days I had only done a couple of 25 miles journeys. It is now as I type once again being fully charged at the service dept. Surely as it is only a two year old car, the Battery can last for a longer period of time without needing recharged. I mean does that mean if I went on holiday for a fortnight the Battery would be flat when I came back😂😂.

I now have serious reservations about the reliability of this type of car.

Your thought and advice would be greatly appreciated 

cheers

Gordon

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How long had it been sitting before you tried to start it on the 11th May?

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If you're recharging the original 12v Battery it was probably ruined by sitting discharged for a long time originally and won't hold charge.  The only solution is to replace it but 12 batteries do need regular use to keep charged as they're smaller capacity than normal car batteries. There's also a small chance that there's a parasitic drain in the car but first thing is to simply renew the battery 

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59 minutes ago, Saxmaniac said:

but first thing is to simply renew the battery 

Exactly as Saxmaniac says above, leaving the Battery sat in a discharged state will age it rapidly.

The Battery is covered by the 5 year Toyota warranty (it's £125 - ish, if it wasn't), but the Battery needs to fail on the Toyota dealer validation test machine (30 minutes to do) for Toyota to agree to change it.  And if it does pass the test (i.e. it is good - which sounds unlikely) then some dealers charge 1/2 an hours labour for running that test. 

Just as background, the 12v Battery is 35Ah (35000mAh) capacity, if I remember correctly.  This is about 1/2 -  2/3rds the size of the Battery in a normal,1.8 petrol car, but in this car the Battery does not start the engine up, just the computer and the contactor to fire up the high power electronics. So, arguably, the Battery doesn't need to be large, it could be said.

If your car has auto unlocking (so you don't need to press the fob button to open the door), then the drain of the alarm and key 'receiver' circuitry is 50 mA, which is about what other cars will generally drain too.  So, assuming the Battery is perfect and fully charged (to simplify this) then you have 35000/50 = 700 hours before the Battery is completely flat.  700h/24 = 29 days to get to that point.

In reality, the car's unlocking receiver system probably goes into a 'deep - shutdown' after two weeks or so, (I've never verified this), so that (29 day) figure could be longer in practice.  But your battery won't be 'as new', and may discharge differently with different temperatures, and has its own (really quite low) self-discharge characteristic to be factored in.

If you don't have the keyless door unlocking, or you have disabled it via the dash menu (this procedure is in the full owners manual, not the one you get with the car), then the car draws 20 mA.  So the time to 'flat battery' is much improved.

Also, if you do have the keyless entry, and are in the habit of having your car keys in your pocket as you simply walk closely past the car, without actually opening it, then the car will 'wake up' it's electrical systems in anticipation, and consume much more power for the next 20 minutes (I've measured this with a meter).

But yes, you're right, you would think that the car could happily sit longer than it does without needing attention of some sort.

HTH

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Thanks for your replies.

Magic Boy....it had only been sitting for a few days, but when I had been going out in it, I was only doing a few miles (since 23rd March)

Saxmaniac and Gerg....I really appreciate your in depth analysis and I now understand a lot more about the intricacies of the Battery.
 

AND.....I have just had a phone call from the Service Department who have told me that, after an overnight charge, it has registered a Bad/Replace message and as such the Battery is being replaced👍👍👍

Thanks again for all your help.

Gordon

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Sounds like you have got the best outcome (wasted time apart)!

This is going off at a bit of a tangent but, if anyone is interested, in the Hyundai Ioniq hybrid, the regular lead/acid AGM 12v Battery has been replaced by a lithium phosphate Battery that lives as a part of the traction (high voltage) Battery

This 'alternative' 12v Battery still goes flat over time, but when it does, you can command a charge via the dash, from the high voltage Battery to the '12v' Battery, even when the car won't power up - problem then solved!

Respect is due!  Hyundai are leading the way on this one, not so?

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Looks that way, Toyota's basic system goes back 20 years so Hyundai have thought about that weakness. It wouldn't put me off a Toyota  but it's just something to be aware of and invest in a trickle charger if not using constantly 

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6 hours ago, geejayboy said:

Thanks for your replies.

Magic Boy....it had only been sitting for a few days, but when I had been going out in it, I was only doing a few miles (since 23rd March)

Saxmaniac and Gerg....I really appreciate your in depth analysis and I now understand a lot more about the intricacies of the battery.
 

AND.....I have just had a phone call from the Service Department who have told me that, after an overnight charge, it has registered a Bad/Replace message and as such the battery is being replaced👍👍👍

Thanks again for all your help.

Gordon

I'm agreeing with Saxmaniac, which is why I asked the question. The advice from Toyota UK via Twitter and the blog pages early into lockdown recommended the hybrid cars are left powered up in ready mode for a period of time once a week to allow the traction Battery to recharge the 12v Battery.

I was powering the car up once a week for about 30 minutes and that was enough,

Link : https://blog.toyota.co.uk/coronavirus-toyota-hybrid-car-maintenance

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In my normal Auris petrol, I left it parked once for 14 days in Jan/Feb and it started up, second time it was around 26 days and although the Battery was weak, it started up also. BTW, it's got an original 13 yr old Battery!

I was in the dealership not long ago and the salesman was talking me into looking/buying a hybrid, I was hesitant due to the complexity and cost of repairs. Now I will be holding off for even longer and stick to non-turbo petrol engines.

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On 6/19/2020 at 5:09 PM, MagicBoy said:

The advice from Toyota UK via Twitter and the blog pages early into lockdown recommended the hybrid cars are left powered up in ready mode for a period of time once a week to allow the traction battery to recharge the 12v battery.

Also posted in General Discussions on 9th April - 

 

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1 hour ago, ziauris said:

In my normal Auris petrol, I left it parked once for 14 days in Jan/Feb and it started up, second time it was around 26 days and although the battery was weak, it started up also. BTW, it's got an original 13 yr old battery!

I was in the dealership not long ago and the salesman was talking me into looking/buying a hybrid, I was hesitant due to the complexity and cost of repairs. Now I will be holding off for even longer and stick to non-turbo petrol engines.

The hybrid's are generally very reliable - around here well over half the private hire taxi's are now Auris Hybrid estates, and the old favourite Skoda Octavia TDI is rarely seen. I've heard of 250k+ mileages on the Prius with the same powertrain with very little issue.

Don't leave the car parked up for weeks on end with the keyless entry enabled so the 12v Battery goes flat and this particular issue is avoided...

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My 12v Battery was failing but Mr T didn't want to know.  Bought a CTEK MXS 5.0 Battery charger and after a few uses of the "reconditioning" option I think my Battery may is a bit better but what has made a REAL difference is disabling the "smart locking" feature.  I think it was Gerg who told me how much Battery power this feature was contuinually using - I don't recall the exact numbers but it was about twice as much as using the key fob buttons.  If it wasn't Gerg then my apologies to whom it was who told me!

You can easily make this change using the car's SETUP button on the head unit and follow the menu options.

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On 6/20/2020 at 10:06 PM, ziauris said:

In my normal Auris petrol, I left it parked once for 14 days in Jan/Feb and it started up, second time it was around 26 days and although the battery was weak, it started up also. BTW, it's got an original 13 yr old battery!

I was in the dealership not long ago and the salesman was talking me into looking/buying a hybrid, I was hesitant due to the complexity and cost of repairs. Now I will be holding off for even longer and stick to non-turbo petrol engines.

The hybrids are complex and repairs would be expensive if you're stuck with the main dealers. However they're some of the most reliable and long lived cars on the market. 

However, with modern emissions legislation normal petrol cars are becoming less reliable with GDI engines, turbos, skimping on engineering. Also there's gearboxes, belts,clutches, alternators, stop start systems etc etc all sources of trouble! The Toyota hybrids were the only option. I was replacing an old Astra Cdti which was rock solid for nearly 200k but you simply can't but anything equivalent today 

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11 hours ago, Saxmaniac said:

The hybrids are complex and repairs would be expensive if you're stuck with the main dealers. However they're some of the most reliable and long lived cars on the market. 

However, with modern emissions legislation normal petrol cars are becoming less reliable with GDI engines, turbos, skimping on engineering. Also there's gearboxes, belts,clutches, alternators, stop start systems etc etc all sources of trouble! The Toyota hybrids were the only option. I was replacing an old Astra Cdti which was rock solid for nearly 200k but you simply can't but anything equivalent today 

If you look at USA videos you'll find many Corolla's and Civic's with >200k miles still going stong (non stop start/non turbo/non GDi). 

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18 hours ago, ziauris said:

If you look at USA videos you'll find many Corolla's and Civic's with >200k miles still going stong (non stop start/non turbo/non GDi). 

But we're not in the USA

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5 hours ago, FROSTYBALLS said:

But we're not in the USA

No, but I doubt the mechanics of the engines over there are much different to here, so if they do >200k over there, similar should be possible here too.

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3 minutes ago, ziauris said:

No, but I doubt the mechanics of the engines over there are much different to here, so if they do >200k over there, similar should be possible here too.

Not that relevant as Toyota didn't offer those engines as an alternative to the Hybrid in the 2nd Gen Auris. You guys got the old 1.8, we had the 1.6 Valvematic then the 1.2 Turbo. The Hybrid is likely more reliable than either of those over 200k...

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1 minute ago, MagicBoy said:

Not that relevant as Toyota didn't offer those engines as an alternative to the Hybrid in the 2nd Gen Auris. You guys might have got the old 1.8, we had the 1.6 Valvematic then the 1.2 Turbo. The Hybrid is likely more reliable than either of those over 200k...

OK then, a non-hybrid VVTi Toyota engine will explode at 100k!

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