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Everything posted by Opifex

  1. Hi All, I have a late-2013 Yaris Hybrid which makes an odd noise when I go over road humps, but only under specific conditions. There is one particular section of road that I travel regularly which involves stopping for a junction, turning right into a 20mph zone, a short acceleration up a hill before reaching the first road hump, the sort with a flat top about the length of the car. As the front wheels rise onto the hump there is a clonk sort of noise followed by another one when the front wheels go down the other side. Continue up the hill and the same happens again at the next hump, but there is no noise from later humps as the road reaches the brow of the hill and goes down the other side. The noise is consistent and reproducible at this spot but hardly ever occurs anywhere else. Does this story sound familiar to anyone? Graham.
  2. An update on the story...... After I took the voltage readings early in September (see above), son informed the dealer and arranged for the car to go in for the fourth time. He also took his record of over twenty failures since his previous visit but again the garage tested the battery and said it was OK. This time though they did agree to change the battery anyway and there have been no failures since. Problem solved.
  3. Update. I had the opportunity to check my son's battery today and found it very low. After a short run followed by 20 min rest the standing voltage with all load turned off was 9.8v and it dropped to 9.0v for an instant when the start button was pressed. This time it did start without a problem and the voltage rose to 14.3v. Armed with these figures he is going to go back to the dealer to get them to replace the battery. Michael - it's a 2011 Gen 3
  4. Thanks for the suggestions. The video is pretty much what I remember from watching my son trying to start it at the weekend, and I see at the end of the thread the problem goes away after a new battery. The only battery test we had time for was to try lowering the windows when the car wasn't showing Ready and they seemed to work as normal. I'll send him a link to this thread and see if we can have a closer look at things next weekend. Thanks again.
  5. Hi, My son is running a leased 2011 Prius with about 35,000 on the clock which has developed a strange problem that I hope will ring bells with someone. Starting with a cold engine is fine but if the car is stopped it won't restart when warm, even if it's only had a short run. When the Ready button is pressed with the brake pedal down it goes through flashing all the lights on the dash but then shows the amber light on the Ready button and doesn't show Ready on the dash. If he repeats the operation it does eventually start but yesterday it took 28 presses to get it going after a run of about 2 miles follwed by 20 minutes rest. It's been in to Mr T several times and they have checked the 12v battery and replaced the brake pedal switch. They now seem to have run out of ideas and have asked him to record when it happens in the hope that they can see a pattern. Any ideas?
  6. My Prius on 17" is lumpy and rattly.
  7. Hi Guys, Sorry for not responding sooner - we're on holiday for a few days in God's Own County and haven't been able to get on the internet. Thanks Kingo for confirming that mine should have been done in May - I'l get on to the dealer when I get back home. As for location, we spend about half the year in UK and half in France but for everything official we are still UK resident. I'm on other forums that do allow you to add your own words for location so on those I put Berks UK & Gard FR - much more helpful.
  8. Can someone please tell me when the HHC was included in the service. My Prius was serviced in May and the service sheet lists the HHC but it wasn't ticked and I didn't get any sort certificate for it. Thanks.
  9. Opifex

    New To The Prius

    Hi Simon and welcome to the forum. I don't think anyone has mentioned the Power and Eco buttons. The main effect is to alter the response of the accelerator pedal. Eco will make the car feel very slow until you get used to it, and Power will have you taking off like a rocket. My technique is to run in Eco mode all the time except where rapid acceleration is needed such as joining fast-moving traffic. There is also a Normal mode which, as you may expect, is halfway between Power and Eco. There's no Normal button as such but you get there by pressing the Eco button again if you are in Eco (or the Power button if it's in Power). I only use EV to stop the ICE (i.e. the petrol engine) starting if I'm moving the car a few feet on the drive. It only saves a drop or too of petrol but as someone said you get obsessive about mpg with these cars. Happy motoring.
  10. I once went to a conference on software quality where one speaker said that the worst code they had analysed was from a nuclear power station - scary.
  11. That Jeep is so ugly nobody would want to steal it.
  12. Another vote for Firefox. Haven't used IE for years.
  13. The ethanol fuel started to appear in France about 10 years ago and is safe to use in your Prius. However I generally avoid it personally because I find there is a reduction in power and increased consumption which more than offsets the slightly lower price. Most branded petrol stations have gone over entirely to SP95-E10 but supermarkets still stock SP95 which is my usual choice. The majority of supermarkets are closed on Sunday but have automatic pumps. I've heard that some credit cards don't work in France but I believe these are Amercan-issued cards and I've never had problems myself with Mastercards or Visa. You can find fuel availability and prices at each petrol station on this French government website http://www.prix-carburants.gouv.fr/
  14. An article I bookmarked some time ago (http://techno-fandom.org/~hobbit/cars/sweet/refl.html) comes to the conclusion that "One of the core efficiency techniques is to use the gasoline engine as productively as possible, or not at all. That's the essence of the "pulse and glide" routine, and plays on the simple fact that the typical internal-combustion engine is *not* very efficient when driving light loads. If you want the best output for your fuel dollar, you have to make it *work* against a load but not against itself, which means high output shaft torque but at fairly low RPM. As non-intuitive as it sounds, trying to baby an engine generally does not return its best fuel economy -- for the moment discounting special cases like lean-burn designs" The author then goes on to explain how he arrived at this conclusion with a few thousand words and numbers. If you have the stamina it makes interesting reading. Unfortunately the source isn't identified so it's difficult to judge if the info is reliable.
  15. You're kidding? When we were in France the other year we just programmed the SatNav to avoid tolls and we only paid 1 toll in the entire trip and that was because I wasn't paying attention. You drive along, about a mile before the toll signs the SatNav says turn off, you turn off the motorway along with all the French cars, drive along the old route with the motorway still in your view, a few miles later you pull back on and away you go. Simple. Was fun to watch all the Brits whizzing along without noticing, presumably around the corner they'd see the Peage sign and grumble. The turn offs everyone else pulled off were usually weakly signed and certainly didn't give a hint you could avoid the tolls. Sometimes you had to drive through a nice small town, but they were never gridlocked like here. The side roads were also like UK side roads used to be 30 years ago, wide enough for 2 cars but no white lines and no curbs. I think it's been a long time since you've driven down such roads in the UK as now they are as rough as a cobbled street. Literally pot holes ever few yards, worn out ruts, holes, sunken old roadworks, drain covers sitting proud. Nightmare, Dare I say you had your rose tinted specs on with your comment? My main reason for using the French motorways is that it's so much faster. There are very few parallel roads on my route that have a speed limit above 90kph and it drops to 50kph as you pass through each village. On the motorway I can maintain a fairly consistent 130kph (admittedly with the dramatic drop in MPG mentioned in the original post). You pay your money and take your choice. I'm not sure which comment you're referring to in the last paragraph. Local roads in both countries are maintained by local authorities who each have there own priorities. Maybe we're the exception, but I don't find the roads where we are in the UK anywhere near as bad as you are describing. The lack of white lines, cat's eyes and edge markings on country roads seems to be common across France and can be a real menace at night when there are oncoming headlights. Another good reason for sticking to the motorways.
  16. French roads are a bit of a mixed bag. Trunk roads are generally good but when you get into country roads and the back streets in towns it can be as bad as UK. Our road has had potholes for years. Every so often the council come along tip a spadeful of asphalt into the hole and then drive the lorry over it to pack it down. Give it a few months and a bit of heavy rain and the hole's back agin. I agree that French motorways are a lot more pleasant than in the UK, particularly since a lot of the service areas have been rebuilt in the last couple years, but it is at a price. Last year it cost me £540 in tolls to do the return journey from Calais to Avignon (about the same as Brighton to Inverness) four times. In UK it would have been free.
  17. What I would like to add - a turbo (power when you need it, economy when you don't) - folding mirrors - fully electric seats with memory - mirrors linked to the seat memory - front and rear proximity sensors - reversing camera as standard - tactile buttons (so that I can find the Power/Eco/EV without having to look down) Improve - sat nav so that it doesn't take you round three side of a square. (my 2010 does this quite often) - sat nav that can be updated at reasonable cost. Keep - Space-saver spare wheel (essential as half my mileage is on French motorways and tyre-wreck would mean a very expensive and time-consuming recovery) - HUD showing speed, Ecometer and turn indicator as on 2010 Prius - markers on reversing screen linked to steering position as on 2010 Prius Avoid - increased size Get rid of - the P button (incorporate it into the gear lever as in the Yaris) - the ergonomic disasters of steering column stalks (that I'm certain had the same designer as the Bop-It) - the high price - the large blind spot caused by the wide pillars either side of the windscreen - the auto-parking gimmick that I've never got to work
  18. Opifex

    Another Recall

    This is my first recall in three years so not a frequent occurrence. It did mean that I couldn't use the car for a day (but I could have had a loan car) and my car was given a free wash.
  19. Regarding the horizontal adjustment are you in a right or left hand drive car, and are you asking about dipped or full beam headlights?
  20. My first thought was a spider with hex sockets. I have one that normally lives in the garage but after reading this thread I'm going to start carrying it in the boot. Thanks!
  21. Glad to hear that others are having trouble reversing - I thought I must be just losing it. I have to do precision reverse parking in my garage which involves approaching at an angle and getting as close as possible to the door post on the nearside, I used to be able to do this pretty consistently in my old car which was bigger than the Prius. The usual problem seems to be that I misjudge the position of the rear wheels and turn too early. Unfortunately the problem isn't limited to reversing. I also seem to hit the kerb at pinch-points and car park paystations more often than I used to. I can only think this is due to me not adjusting to the drivers seat being further forward in relation to the wheels than in my previous cars which all had a "real" bonnet, and the window glass isn't as low so I lose sight of the kerb sooner. Anyone else have trouble?
  22. Opifex


    What does your insurance policy say about replacing the car? When I needed a repair last year I chose a Toyota dealer which doesn't have an in-house bodyshop but uses a facility at another dealer in the group. The car was picked-up and returned to home so it made no difference to me except that I had a slightly longer journey to the workshop to get an estimate for the insurance company.
  23. Opifex


    Not sure if the financial arrangements here change things, but the normal situation is that you have the right to insist that repairs are carried out at a repairer of your choice. Insurance companies will try to get you to use their recommended repairer but the choice is yours whether you accept this or not. My preference would be to use a Toyota dealer so that you have a Toyota approved repair and there will be no questions in future about whether the warranty conditions have been broken.
  24. Opifex

    Good News

    I think there's still a 'slip of the mouse' here. The original figure for hybrid retained value is 45.3%, giving a depreciation of 54.7%. In spite of this being the highest retained value (lowest depreciation) it stil strikes me that it is a shocking condemnation of modern car design that a car can be worth only half it's original cost after only three years. I've read several times that modern cars are designed for a life of only seven years. What a waste of materials and effort.
  25. I had a short experience of the updated Gen 3 which I believe has the same Touch and Go and found the main problem was that the screen wasn't as clear as the original Gen 3 and became totally unusable if the sun was shining on it. I'll be interested to hear what you think. Just in passing, it's illegal in France to have a satnav which shows speed cameras and the police can confiscate any they find, Quite how they would do this with an integrated unit I don't know, but I believe that Toyota can supply an update without speed cameras if you are travelling to France and want to avoid any possible hassle.