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What I learnt from charging my Prius

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Posted by urod on January 4, 2010, 7:29 pm

0. Some people in the newsgroups write things they don't have a clue
1. The Prius batteries are somehow interconnected.  When I forgot to
switch off the light, *both* were discharged.
2. It is hard to charge the battery.  When you connect your Prius to
another car's battery, the system thinks that there is enough voltage
in the batteries, so it doesn't charge them.  When you break the
3. All, or almost all, automobiles are poorly designed.  They should
switch off the light when the battery is close to be discharged.
Imagine a computer which, if you forgot to close the windows before
switching it off, requires a maintenance.
4. This has nothing to do with charging, but another problem with all
cars is, if you raise the parking brake during movement (in case of
Prius, stomp on the parking brake), it is a guaranteed accident.
Imagine a calculator which explodes into your face each time you try
to divide by zero!  A reasonable car would display the word "ERROR".
No, I never raised the parking brake, but the thought that if I did, I
could die or kill somebody else, is uncomfortable.
5. Manual for Prius is poorly written.

I am now going to sell my Prius and never buy any car until car
manufacturers start to make cars at least as intelligent as a pocket

Posted by Al Falfa on January 4, 2010, 7:51 pm

From page 366 of the 2010 Prius manual:

"To prevent 12 volt battery discharge

If the interior lights and personal lights [are] on when the door is not
full closed or[and?] the interior light switch [is] in [the] door position,
the lights will go off automatically after 20 minutes."

I can't make sense out of this as written.  Bracketed entries are mine,
otherwise quote is verbatim.

Looks like the 2010 has the feature you want but only if you have the light
switch in the door position.  In other words, if you manually switch the
lights on (not in door position) and leave them on, the battery will be

The manual goes on to say the time lapse can be changed by your dealer.  You
are referred to page 587 where a long list of customizable features begins
and runs through page 592.


Posted by News on January 4, 2010, 8:00 pm

Al Falfa wrote:

Unfortunately, it is not possible to customize the intelligence of every

Posted by Al Falfa on January 4, 2010, 8:16 pm

So true.   The battery in my 2005 was fully discharged twice, once when my
sig-o left the overhead light on after digging in her purse and once when I
left the hatch door ajar.  The first time we just jumped the 2005 to her
car, started it, and let it charge the battery itself.  The second time I
simply put my charger on the handy little post in the fuse box for a couple
of hours.  It just doesn't seem to be all that hard, but then I have jumper
cables and a charger, both being necessities where I live.


Posted by Elmo P. Shagnasty on January 4, 2010, 8:32 pm

And yet, they're allowed to vote and drive on the same roads I drive on.

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