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Toyota Auris Hybrid 2010 aka Prius gen3 pulsating on hard acceleration


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Hi everyone,

I have noticed for some time now that when cruising on motorway at speeds around 60-65mph and push the car hard to accelerate.,( pedal to the bottom) the car reacts as usual and accelerates as usual however there is some kind of pulsating while gaining the speed , similar to rpm limiter in conventional petrol manual car but at lower frequency., it has been like that for many miles perhaps 30k or more , I can’t remember if I noticed that before the car went for a ecu firmware update as per Toyota recall. Anyone else with same car by any chance been noticed the same? The car is up to date serviced as per the manual and it’s only 163k miles. I wonder if anything might needs attention or that can be a limiter or caused by the new firmware?! There are no faults and the car drives and behaves as usual, nothing strange to report here. Highly appreciate any comments. 
Thank you. 

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Hi Tony, that sounds like a misfire. I’d be considering the following:

- spark plugs

- fuel filter / pump 

- injectors (maybe try some BG44k in the fuel) 

- carbon buildup in EGR system / inlet mani(I recall you have cleaned this already?) 

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11 hours ago, Gray86 said:

Hi Tony, that sounds like a misfire. I’d be considering the following:

- spark plugs

- fuel filter / pump 

- injectors (maybe try some BG44k in the fuel) 

- carbon buildup in EGR system / inlet mani(I recall you have cleaned this already?) 

Hi, thank you for your suggestions. I have done all above except the fuel filter, I know our cars fuel filters are not on the maintenance list however any filter will need change after some mileage, I think I might have reached its threshold. Will do some fuel additives first, to make sure is not from fuel or injectors. Upcoming weeks will clean the engine bay and will have closer look around. Thanks again 👍

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This might be total rubbish, but could it be blocked vent in the fuel cap? Restricting flow at high consumption. I have to do a few faster journeys in a few days and I'll see if mine behaves the same, can you describe speed at which you are flooring the throttle and what speed the symptoms happen?

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42 minutes ago, Saxmaniac said:

This might be total rubbish, but could it be blocked vent in the fuel cap? Restricting flow at high consumption. I have to do a few faster journeys in a few days and I'll see if mine behaves the same, can you describe speed at which you are flooring the throttle and what speed the symptoms happen?

Hi, thanks for your input. Usually happens when I have already speeds of around 60mph and floor it to accelerate as fast as it can, the car responds as usual but starts immediately to surge like pulsating pretty much until I release the accelerator, 70-80mph, to me sounds like blocked fuel filter or something with the fuel supply., pump or pressure regulator, injectors, no fault codes though. Only happens on full throttle. , if you accelerate fast but not with full throttle doesn’t happen. Also if you start from 0mph does not happen. , more related to the rpm and engine load IMO. 
Thanks again. 

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Few hundred miles done and the surging still there, I noticed comes up at around 70mph and stays until I release accelerator, no fault codes or any other issues, the car drives really well for now and I am leaving it like that., I am not a fast driver anyway.  If anyone else noticed something similar and knows the cure I will appreciate any helpful information.
Thanks 

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I tried today to reproduce what you are doing and mine just revved steadily and cleanly. If it's not a major problem you could just keep an eye on it for now but if it were mine I'd have a look at any fuel filters and see if the plugs show any clues. Is it worth getting techstream and seeing what live data it might show?

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17 hours ago, Saxmaniac said:

I tried today to reproduce what you are doing and mine just revved steadily and cleanly. If it's not a major problem you could just keep an eye on it for now but if it were mine I'd have a look at any fuel filters and see if the plugs show any clues. Is it worth getting techstream and seeing what live data it might show?

Thanks, 

I will just leave it for now and keep an eye,wait for a warmer weather and meanwhile the car will clock few more thousands of miles and if it’s a filter or anything else will deteriorate more , perhaps will trigger a fault code and will be easier to find and repair. I am a few weeks away from my next service and will have a wider look then. One thing noticed that the exhaust it’s a bit black, might be a rich fuel mixture, air-fuel ratio sensor eventually or injectors at that mileage but mpg is still ok currently at 52mpg. I have no laptop and won’t be able to download and use a techtream . I have only Carista adapter, may play with it, it reads a lots of things surprisingly. 
Thanks again, I will report any changes in the future. 😊

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Some updates: 

I had changed the garage for petrol fill ups, now I had two full tanks from BP and the engine has become quieter and less prone to this surging, then I decided to use that thing : wynns catalytic converter and lambda sensor cleaner,

https://www.wynns.uk.com/product/catalytic-converter-lambda-cleaner/

added to 30ltrs of petrol and I drove the car for around 50 miles, I did a couple of hard accelerations with different starting speeds all the way up to 000mph and no surging at all, the car drives like new., I will drain almost completely the tank and refill at the same BP if possible to check if the problem has gone or return. Prior to that fuel I was regularly filing up at local Shell and Tesco and the car didn’t drive as nice as when I got fuel from BP. This wynns addictive could also be helpful as the label shows interesting ingredients.

https://www.wynns.uk.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/17/2016/06/W24463-Cat-Lambda-Cleaner-E04.00-EN.pdf
 

 The car is old and has 165k miles, I think there is nothing particularly wrong except something on the fuel line, not filter, not pump, perhaps injectors or the fuel itself. When I was playing on the motorway I discovered the speeds of the typical Uk commuters and it’s sad, not even sure there is point of having a speed limits if no one keep within them., the car itself performs great but not my cup of tea to drive like that and even I have a super sport car I would not do it., sadly even the lorries and van drivers were rallying around., but that’s another story.  I also ordered some injectors cleaner from the same brand and will add that next week to see if it’s going to make any changes. 😊👌

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  • 2 weeks later...

Another update: 

done few more tanks of petrol from BP and no surging or pulsating anymore after the use of wynns catalytic converter and lambda sensor cleaner, the car drives better and accelerates smooth with less need to push into halfway  power or to the max, definitely bad fuel and or something was clogged along the fuel lines and or exhaust. 👍

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I have read that supermarket fuel is suspect and isn't the same brew as branded stuff. I pay the extra and avoid the supermarkets. And for food as well but that's another story!

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17 minutes ago, Saxmaniac said:

I have read that supermarket fuel is suspect and isn't the same brew as branded stuff. I pay the extra and avoid the supermarkets. And for food as well but that's another story!

It's the same base fuel it's just the additive package they add to the blend, with the new E10 entering the market older car drivers are going to suffer

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22 minutes ago, Saxmaniac said:

I have read that supermarket fuel is suspect and isn't the same brew as branded stuff. I pay the extra and avoid the supermarkets. And for food as well but that's another story!

Agreed, the strange thing is that Shell usually is top tier garage but the quality of my local one is worse than the supermarket fuels, it is ultra convenient for me to fill up there and this is the only reason I done it many times, but no more. BP is the best for me, esso works fine too, Tesco also not too bad. Sainsbury’s full stop too for me. The last few months during lockdown my car haven’t been used much but kept in ready mode twice weekly and 100 miles only motorway run, this perhaps had helped to get those poor results. No trouble so far after the treatment. 👌

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