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PeteB last won the day on February 3

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About PeteB

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    Hybrid & EV nerd (I mean evangelist)

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    RAV4 Hybrid AWD Excel with JBL/PVM
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  1. yes, I've done it many times, and many early Gen 1 Prius also owners carried a jump starter in the boot and used them without problems. (the Gen 1 Prius was a saloon (sedan to Americans) and the boot (trunk) could be opened with the key or a cable release handle by the driver's seat, so opening when the battery was flat wasn't an issue. Also, there weren't the tiny, LiON jump starters available in those pioneer days. The key thing to avoid (very expensive) trouble is to make sure you connect the jump starter (or jump) leads the right way round - red to red, black to black. Most Toyota Hybrids have the 12V battery in the boot, so for those there are jump start terminals under the bonnet (hood) normally near the fuse box. The big thing to avoid is using a Toyota Hybrid to jump start other cars - that's been said to risk blowing some very expensive components. That's another benefit of having a jump starter pack in the car - if someone asks for a jump, you don't have to try to make them understand why your car shouldn't do that. Quite a few owners have successfully used solar panels as Rob suggests above.
  2. My 3rd Gen Prius survived 3 weeks with no problems a few years ago when I had a bug that kept me indoors. Just over a year ago, when I had a Gen 4 Prius, I was told not to drive for a month after a minor heart scare, and I sat in the car in READY mode for ½ hour every 10 days to keep the 12V battery topped up. I'll do the same during the lock-down if I'm unable to visit the local shop every few days. The Gen 1 Prius (2000-2003 in the UK) had a higher current drain than later Toyota Hybrids, and only a 35ah battery. Some members of another group used an ammeter to measure the drain, but we never fully understood why the drain was so high, given the car only had basic remote central locking and no key-less start. In fact, just leaving the key in the ignition in the off position increased the drain quite a bit, and I once had the leave the key in for a robotic car park and it flattened the battery in 5 hours! Leaving it in ACCesssory position would also flatten it in a few hours. A Gen 1 with a perfect 12V battery, fully charged, and with everything switched off, would be lucky to survive much more than 3 weeks in an airport car park - four at a pinch, even when locked manually to ensure the alarm wasn't active. Gen 2 & 3 did better, with 5 week periods being reported occasionally. I'm told the latest RAV4 has a 52ah battery, but I take no chances and try to use electric seat adjustment (I use a memory button for a driving position and the other setting for getting in and out) or electric tailgate while in READY mode. Since the battery drain wasn't fully understood in the very early days, the 12V battery was often already damaged by the time the car was sold, having been flattened during the voyage from Japan, and at least once at the dealer while waiting to be sold. Only about 1,500 Gen 1s were sold in the UK, only 60 dealers could handle them, and they were never actively marketed, so they sold very slowly, mostly to people (like me) with a keen interest in such technology. Once the issue was known, I understand the 12V battery was disconnected during the sea journey. Since the early days (I got my first Prius in 2002) I've kept a jump starter in the car, just in case. These days it's one of the mini ones, that lives in a seat-back pocket - which is handy if the battery is too flat to open the electric tailgate release, and especially if the car is deadlocked and only the driver's door can be opened with the emergency key!
  3. Me too. My 4th Gen Prius I bought in 2016 and traded for my RAV4 had a set of switches on the driver's armrest that was all lit and far better ergonomically than those fitted to the newer, costlier RAV (both Excel spec). The Prius mirror control, in particular, was like a large Fruit Pastel with a knurled edge and twisted left/right to select which mirror it controlled - easy to find without looking, easy to use - much more so than the old-fashioned design of that on the latest RAV. I really wish they'd carried that arrangement forward. The roof switches for interior lights etc on the Prius were also all illuminated and better shaped to find the right one by feel alone. I do despair of some of the choices made - apart from keeping customers (particularly loyal ones) happy, surely it's cheaper to re-use existing parts for more models than supporting several different versions.
  4. Yes indeed, but since all previous Toyotas I've owned/driven that support USB memory also supported playlists, it's disappointing the people responsible for the specification and software creation for the latest system didn't follow suit. Might be considered industry best practice. And from posts I've seen on various sites (for new Corolla as well) I'm certainly not the only person annoyed by the lack of support.
  5. I don't know if this helps any, but I also have my entire collection on USB. I've always used Playlists, created in my PC. They've worked fine on all my previous Toyotas and some loaned Lexus models, but not on my 2019 RAV4 Excel. They didn't work on the test drive car which had the standard auto, and having the JBL upgrade on my Excel made no difference (not that I wanted the upgrade, I wanted the Panoramic Camera system - which is wonderful, BTW - but they only came as a pair). However, I have found that, for some strange reason, Playlists do work when streaming from my phone via Bluetooth. Less convenient, I have to remember to start the music App on the phone before setting off for it to work. But, for me, better than no Playlists at all. Oh, is that what it stands for... 🤣
  6. I former member of this group (who now has an EV and no longer contributes here) had a first gen plug-in Prius (a 2012 I think) and he reckoned that it still beat the equivalent Gen 3 Prius ordinaire on a long run using Hybrid almost entirely. He put this down to his belief the LiON HV battery in the plug-in was more efficient at driving the electric motor and receiving regenerated power than the NiMH of the standard Prius. I believe another small factor was that when I parked my previous Prius (all four generations) at the end of the day the HV battery would show between 3 and 7 bars, so there was always some unfilled portion. If a plug-in was charged overnight (or any other time) it filled the usable part of the entire battery, the portion designated for EV use and the prortion for Hybrid use as well. It was like being able to plug in an ordinary Prius and fill the remaining bars so you started the next journey with a maxed out HV battery.
  7. That's correct, for all Toyota Hybrids, not just plug-ins. I had a minor heart scare just over a year ago and was told not to drive for a month. Every 10 days I sat in the Prius I had at the time for 20-30 minutes in READY mode and that kept the 12V battery topped up just fine. I also believe Jay is right about plug-ins charging the 12V when plugged in as well.
  8. PeteB

    Dash cam

    My dealer has fitted dashcams to the last 3 cars I've bought from them. They may charge more than Halfords, but at least they know the car. Maybe worth asking?
  9. PeteB

    Poor mpg ?

    I drive mine pretty gently, but do a lot of short journeys which takes a bit of a toll. Until October, my calculated mpg averaged 52, and over the winter around 42 (both optimistic in the car). The overall average, since new, remains 47½, and I expect it to start climbing again now. Interestingly, the average error of the in-car displays has been about 2%, Vs about 5% in all previous Toyotas where I've taken lots of measurements. My best reported mpg was 58.4 on a 250 mile round trip last July. (Mind you, my previous 4th Gen Prius managed 84 mpg reported on the same trip under similar conditions).
  10. I've had the same problem with my RAV4 that was built around April/May last year and delivered in June. Also a Galaxy S7, which never, ever disconnected in my previous car. I actually bought the S7 (because it did wireless charging) when I got my last Toyota, a 2016 Prius Excel, which had a wireless charging pad. So I was not happy when the newer, more expensive RAV4 Excel didn't have wireless charging in the UK, even as an option, although it is standard on some models in other countries. So far it has not disconnected during a call, or when streaming music via Bluetooth.
  11. I'm under 70 but with a couple of heart conditions will probably qualify as "at risk", so I may be in the same boat. I had a bit of a foretaste just over a year ago when a mini stroke meant I couldn't drive for a month (I had a Prius then), so I sat in the car in ready mode on my drive for half an hour every 10 days to keep the 12V battery topped up - the HV system charges it even when the engine's not running. At least if I'm quarantined I won't be spending a fortune on taxis as I did that month! As explained in my previous link, all Toyota Hybrids have a 'sensitive' 12V battery because it doesn't have to run a starter motor. A Volvo estate in had in the 1990s had a 12V battery that wouldn't have been out of place in a very large truck! In my case I also have a friend that I trust who's a named driver on my insurance, and we take turns driving when we go out for a meal each week - that will obviously stop if I'm quarantined, but I might ask him to take the car for a drive periodically if it comes to it.
  12. Is your son's jump starter small enough to keep inside the car? If the 12V battery gets too low, the car won't unlock, and you can't get into the boot using the electric opener button. If you've deadlocked the car, you can only open the driver's door using the emergency key. So if your jumpstarter's in the boot, can be tricky to get at it. I have one of the tiny ones and keep it (in it's case) in the seat-back pocket so I can get to it from the driver's door. See here if interested:
  13. PeteB

    Poor mpg ?

    Also depends on the type of journeys you do. A few years ago a friend swapped a petrol car for a new one of the same model with a diesel engine, but he only did a few 1-3 mile journeys a week, the last thing that suits a diesel. He found he was getting worse mpg than on his old petrol version, and ended up doing regular unnecessary longer trips just to stop the exhaust system fouling up and to make the amber engine warning light go out! He recently exchanged it for a petrol version again!
  14. Nope - the text is about the memory seats, the subject matter had moved on from the original title.
  15. A few of us had it - see here: