What information do you need from me before I call to set up service?
If convenient, please have your diagnostic codes checked prior to calling. As long as there are warning lights present on the dashboard, auto parts stores such as Auto Zone and O’Reillys can perform this service for free! In addition we will need to know the year, make and model of your vehicle along with the location you wish to have the service performed.
What should I expect during my appointment?
Your technician will call prior to arrival to confirm your address and appointment time. Once he arrives, a diagnostic test will be performed to confirm HV battery failure before any work is started. The installation usually takes thirty minutes and you are welcome to test drive the vehicle before payment. Your technician will be able to process all major debit and credit cards as well as cash.
How can I prepare my car for your service?
The best thing you can do to help speed up the installation is to remove any personal items from the back seat and trunk area. Also make sure your tires are inflated and you have gas so you can test drive your vehicle after service. Please note that Toyota will not allow us to work on their lot, so if your car is at the dealership you will need to relocate it before our arrival. If you cannot be present at the time of service, please let us know.
Is your new battery really new?
Yes! These are not “kind of new” or “new generation” battery modules (cells). We buy them directly from Toyota and pass the savings on to you. The modules in these batteries are newly manufactured and have zero drive miles on them. All new batteries sold by Toyota require assembly. Toyota will try to reuse your computer and relay components if they perform the service. We perform this assembly ahead of time at our facility using components we have tested so you do not have to worry about additional charges if your computer or relays are defective. We also boost the warranty Toyota offers on new batteries up to five years or 100,000 miles.
What is a rebuilt battery?
A properly rebuilt battery has been re-balanced to restore its capacity to near factory conditions. The rebuild process includes load and voltage testing of all the modules and replacing of damaged or under-performing modules. We recondition and test every module in every rebuilt battery we sell. We upgrade all copper bus bars by nickel plating them to prevent corrosion. We do not simply swap out failed modules, as this type of repair will not last. We do everything we can to build you the best battery.
Why did my original HV battery fail?
As the cells in your packs are used, they can become unbalanced and develop differing electrical capacities. As the pack is used further, voltage differences between the cells continue to increase. This can become a problem because the pack is only as good as the weakest module. Batteries can fail for a variety of reasons such as excessive heat, age, manufacturing defects and impact damage.
How do I know if my current battery has failed or is about to fail?
There are several symptoms of hybrid battery failure. Rapid or instantaneous change of the battery status is an easily identifiable symptom. This information can be located on the multi-function display. As the HV battery deteriorates you will notice the battery graphic fluctuating between one bar and eight bars in less than 30 seconds.
Another sign of HV battery failure is an audible fan noise coming from the battery’s cooling fan that is located next to the rear passenger seat in the Prius and behind the rear seats in the Camry. When a battery is about to fail it may overheat causing the fan to run faster than normal as it attempts to keep your battery cool.
When the battery does fail the car will illuminate several warning lights on both the dashboard and the center display screen. A red triangle, VSC, and ABS light on the dashboard, along with a red car with an exclamation point over it on the center display are indicative of battery problems. Once these warning lights have appeared safely take your Prius to your nearest auto parts store such as O’Rileys, Auto Zone or Advanced Auto Parts to have the diagnostic codes read for free. Here are some common diagnostic codes that are specific to the HV battery:
- P3011 – P3024
Take note of all diagnostic codes and we will be happy to help you determine if our services are needed.
Can Hometown Hybrids just replace the one bad module in my battery instead of all them?
Replacing just one module (aka cell) on a battery that has 20-40 modules will create problems that may arise very quickly. The replacement module that is added will likely have vastly different metrics than the ones that are currently in the battery. Also, when one module fails, there’s a good chance that others are on the verge of failing as well. Replacing only some of the modules will cause the battery to become unbalanced resulting in the reappearance of warning lights. We don’t perform this type of service because it would be impossible to provide a warranty for it and we don’t want our customers to have to deal with a constant reemergence of problems.
Why not buy a battery from the Toyota Dealership?
Our new batteries are the same you would get from Toyota, so why not save some money? If you want to save even more money our reconditioned batteries are an excellent option! Either way the cost savings are significant. We can replace your battery at your home or work saving you time, hassle and towing fees if your car is not able to be driven.