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Hybrid Vehicles/2001 Prius Issues


I've had my car in at the dealership four times in the last 8 months. First, the hybrid battery went and I had to replace it. Right before it stopped working the monitor for the battery would shoot up to full then way down to almost empty, espeically when I was at idle.  That was replaced as well as the aux battery, the spark plugs and the throttle body was cleaned out. The next issue was my car started to jerk very badly when I started it up. It also made a very loud clunking noise when I sat at idle. It would not shift very well from 0-30 then stop then start again when I braked. The first time they said I had water in my tank. They had to replace it because of a 'bladder' at the bottom they couldn't get the water out from. That was replaced and the check light went off until two days later. They had said it was only emmissions and nothing to worry about. In the recent few days I had to take it back again because it was do the EXACT same thing, but 10 times worse. Light flashed, car jerked and wouldn't accerlate right. They said they would have to replace it again.  They said it was because I bought contaminated gas. They did suggest that the main computer was behind it all, but then said no (they would have to pay for this in full).
Also my defog doesn't work right. It will only work when the AC is on and sometimes the AC will work then stop and the light will flash. Note that it was working before they replaced the battery. All these issues cropped up in the last year. Starting in March when they said they had to replace the hybrid battery. I feel like I am being duped into paying more money for something that doesn't really need fixing or they are ingoring the real issue. I have paid up to 4k for all these issues and my car still will not run right. I filled up my mothers car at the exact same station and she has no issues. Any ideas? Thank you.

In a car of that age, you might be getting an intermittent problem from some obscure corroded connector.  Such things can be very hard to diagnose.  Blaming your troubles on bad gas sounds a bit desperate unless you have been hunting discounts.  Quality does vary even at one station, if a delivery stirs sediment or the new gas is different.  My best advice is to try to check the reputation of your mechanics vs others you could access.  Good Luck,

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Bob Stuart


I'm best on questions of the suitability of new technologies, but will try to keep up with retail offerings of hybrid vehicles too.


Designing human-electric hybrids.

International Human Powered Vehicle Association

4th Annual Velomobile Seminar proceedings, many listserv postings.

few academics, but my 1st prototype won a world championship, and I've lectured to engineers.

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