2007 Camry Hybrid Battery Problem or Electrical Issues?

20

Asked by Jun 27, 2016 at 05:03 PM about the 2007 Toyota Camry Hybrid

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 2007 Toyota Camry Hybrid with approximately 134K miles.  The
"Check Hybrid System" comes on along with "Check VSC system".  The
VSC system always comes on a second or two after the check hybrid system
turns on.  Lately, I have been getting anywhere between 32 and 34 MPG
with my car.  I drive approximately 1000 miles a week.  The light usually
turns on immediately after I start the car and while I'm backing up.  They
came on several times before and I usually go to the 12 volt battery in the
trunk and disconnect it to reset the whole system.  Then everything runs
smooth again for about a week.  The hybrid battery charges up to about 90%
or level 7.  For some reason, I never see it up to level 8 which is the highest.  
Do you think the hybrid battery needs replacement or the car has an
electrical problem.?  I live in FL and it's really hot nowadays.

33 Answers

1,240

Sounds like you need to have the computers on this vehicle scanned with the appropriate SCAN TOOL. I suspect a wheel speed sensor failure. There are some Auto Parts Stores which provide scan services for free. Is there an "AUTO Zone" in your area?

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
20

Thank you Tony for your insight. Yes I do have Advanced Auto Parts and AutoZone nearby to have it scanned. Also, I had it read at Toyota Dealership a while back and they told me I needed to replace my whole Hybrid Battery pack. I can never trust these guys which is why I am seeking others opinion on this.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
1,240

Understand your concern about Toyota .....unfortunately the diagnosis of your Battery Pack requires the detailed data stream a Factory Scan Tool provides. Did Toyota write on the repair order the ID of the codes they found which led them to their diagnosis? They should have. The ID of the codes being set when that warning light comes on is key. Make some phone calls to various INDEPENDANT garages. Some...do invest in a Factory Scan Tool. They usually charge about $100.00 for a Scan diagnosis vs...What was the estimate for a Battery Pack from Toyota?

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
20

I actually never thought to look for a code that led Toyota to this conclusion. However, I pulled my receipt and there is no code shown. See attached photo. The battery pack is estimated at $4,920.00 before labor.

1,240

IMO...I would want a second opinion including the rational...eg..trouble codes stored in the computer....and the labor charge. Toyota used to claim these batteries would last 100,000 miles or 10 years. Since you are over this mileage....It might be interesting to do some shopping around for a "good used" battery pack. There should be some wrecked hybrids in the junk yards. Keep in mind there is a huge safety issue associated with this battery replacement. High Voltage stored in this battery could kill.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Recognizing this is 8-months old, hoping to help someone else maybe: Check the 12v battery in the trunk. If you don't have the tools yourself, drive to Autozone or Pepboys etc and ask them to test it (many of them will come out to the car). Apparently 2007 era hybrids can throw this code when the "normal" battery (not the big battery pack) goes bad. Try that first!

1,930

Gilbert....did you ever resolve this issue with your vehicle?

20

No, I'm still driving with the "Check Hybrid System" light on and I can see the gas mileage is progressively diminishing after I log my fuel assumption. I had the car read by an independent hybrid battery replacement mechanic and by Goodyear Auto, and they both conclude it's the hybrid battery. It has been over a year since the light came on, but the car is still driveable. I don't plan on taking any more actions unless you have a suggestion that involves not replacing the battery and save me my wallet. Thank You for responding. I truly appreciate it.

74,375

I would shop around for an aftermarket battery pack. I see battery packs for $1,000 to $2,000. Installation would be extra and all batteries are not the same so check them out first.

20

I have shopped around and found refurbish battery pack anywhere between $1,100 and 2,500 depending on level of warranty selected. I'm wondering if I can drive the car until the hybrid pack in my car completely dies. Then I'll replace it. Any reason not to do that other than being stranded at the worst time possible? I guess that's the risk I'm willing to take. Please advise.

Test

I am having the same problem. I also cannot afford to fix it and have been driving it. Sometimes the big battery makes a humming noise. Have you experienced this? I was curious if there is a way to allow the engine to run off fuel only without the hybrid system.

20

Lately I have been disconnecting the 12 volt battery whenever the warning light comes on. The warning light goes away and the car drives as normal again. I do hear the humming noise but only when the warning light is not on. If you disconnect the 12V battery, does your warning light disappear even for a few days? If you haven't tried that, disconnect it for about 30 seconds and let me know what you get after you plug it back in. Thanks

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I had two issues, the first was with the Check Hybrid System being on constantly, which when I would charge the Auxiliary (12 volt deep cycle) it would go away for a while. The whole system doesn't work if that battery is dead. Then, even with a full charge the Check Hybrid System light would come on. We decided to buy an aftermarket hybrid battery (fully installed $1000). It went away for a while, but now the issue happens that Gilberttheman describes to begin with, only accompanied by a complete loss of power. This usually happens while backing up but is now doing it randomly and I've noticed that the gear isn't detected on the dashboard. Again, Toyota said get a new car.

1,930

Passive...what year is your hybrid?

20

Update: For the first, my 07 TCH check hybrid system light came on while driving at a speed more than 60 MPH. However, it still behaves as if the light is not on. Previously when the light is on, the car never shuts off when I'm at a stop light or going less than 20 MPH. This time, it's shutting off running on battery only. The navigation screen displays energy flow while driving unlike previous occasions. Although all tests performed on that car points to the battery, I still wonder if there's an underlying issue other than the hybrid battery. Please shed some light if you have any. Thanks,

1,930

Seems you will need to have this vehicle checked out at a Toyota Dealership. Their Factory Scan Tool is needed to probe and display Data from each and every computer on this vehicle. Otherwise...all we can do is keep guessing about the root cause of your issues with this vehicle. So...you might consider a full diagnosis at the Dealer...and...make sure you have documentation of ALL stored and current TROUBLE CODES found in the memory of the many computers....and...an estimate for the cost of repairs. These Hybrid Vehicles are great cars for about 100,000 miles....10 years. Then....Those Cells in in the HV Battery start to go bad. Groups of these Cells are monitored by a Computer. When the Computer "sees" a Cell going bad...it identifies its location within a group of Cells. HV Battery re-builders ID the bad cells and replace them with a good USED cell from a returned (core) Battery Pack. That explains a Good Used replacement HV battery Pack @ $1500 vs a Toyota new BP at about $3-4000. In the final analysis....how much $$$$ did you really save on gas? Perhaps...Folks should be doing the math before a Hybrid purchase. Thanks for the update and let us know the "latest and greatest on this interesting and educational issue.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

My car shuts off when on battery power only, usually going less than 20 mph. It always restarts, which is why I thought it was a problem not with the starter battery, but the hybrid battery. I haven't had a chance to unplug and re-plug the starter battery. I just replaced the $600 starter battery 5 months ago.

20

Does anyone know a place in Florida, preferably in those cities West Palm Beach, Tampa, Miami, Sarasota, Orlando where I can take my hybrid battery and have it worked on. Although the light and diagnosis pointed to the battery, I truly believe there's some other issues perhaps charging cable I dont know. Please advise if you know a place.

1,930

Gilbert....did you ever resolve the issue with your vehicle?

20

No, I have not. Do you a solution for me?

1,930

Gilbert....I am afraid I do not have a cheap solution to these Hybrid repairs. After the 10 years....100000 mile mark is reached...you can expect big $$$$$ repairs on these vehicles. Good luck.

I'm having the same problem for the second time - about 15 months ago I got a refurbished battery pack for about $2000, with a one year warranty (they assured me they usually lasted 3-5 years in their experience). Now the check hybrid systems light is back, and the car hesitates slightly when accelerating (especially from a stop). Y'all mentioned to check / unplug and replug the battery in the trunk - where is this and is it something I can safely do myself? I'm relatively handy with tools but know very little about cars... also I remember reading that an oil change gave someone a few months of respite, is this something that might help? I am due for one anyway...

1,930

Virginia....what make model year is your vehicle? Most Hybrid model vehicle problems require a Scan Tool for proper diagnosis. Codes are stored in computers when issues surface. These codes can provide the info for accurate diagnosis.

It is a 2007 Toyota Camry Hybrid. I just stopped by Auto Zone to confirm, and it is in fact code P0A80 - Replace Hybrid Battery Pack. I'm assuming this means the unplugging / replugging of the trunk battery isn't going to help in this case... the warnings/problems just started coming on yesterday - any idea how long I might have before it stops working completely? Will it get progressively worse as time goes on? Is there anything I can do to extend the life or solve this problem without spending thousands of dollars? The car only has 100,000 miles on it, but I don't want to keep throwing good money after bad.

20

The 12V battery is located on the right side of the trunk. The code you receive is indeed the hybrid battery pack failure. I have that same code and have been driving my car with the light on for over a year now and I drive a lot. Since the time my light came on, I have put over 50K miles on the car. I just kept unplugging the 12V battery and wait 5 min before replugging it. I know it does not solve the problem, but this method allows the car to behave somewhat normal vs when the light is on and the engine works nonstop. Thank you for posting and notifying me.

1,930

Gilbert.....thanks for the update on your vehicle. please continue to do so. It will be interesting to follow your experience with the Hybrid malfunction on your vehicle. Hopefully...Toyota designed your car to continue to function for many more miles. You might consider changing the Engine Oil more frequently than suggested in your Owners Manual. It's now doing most of the work in getting you from point A-B. Good Luck.

20

Thank you Last Chance Garage. I recently had my oil changed and I was told that I only had about 2.5 quarts of oil left. Like you said in your post above, change the oil more often than recommended. I'm finding out that the car is burning a lot of oil. My mechanic showed me my tail pipe being very dirty. Last oil change, the car took 5 quarts, and I change the oil every month which is when I hit 5000 miles. I drive over 1000 miles a week for work.

1,930

Message received. Your above experience with this vehicle will help others in similar situation to decide whether these Hybrids are really appropriate for long term ownership. Can you imagine what the costs are to maintain a FULLY electric vehicle. I wonder what it would cost to replace that Battery Pack?? Good job and keep us up to date.

Hi folks: I have a 2007 Camry Hybrid that I purchased with 150,000 miles on it (for a good price, I think.) We've dealt with the P0A8 code. It's not like the performance of the car changed dramatically with the "Check Hybrid System" message flashing. After much research on the problem and searching for alternative solutions to plunking down the $3500 at a Toyota dealership, I found a Toyota technician offering his services on Craigslist (Boston area.) With the odo already past 170,000 miles he said that you can't expect miracles, but he would check it out. I had no references on the guy but he certainly seemed to know the system intimately. We removed the hybrid pack while the car was sitting in my driveway. This takes 45 minutes for someone with his experience. And then I let him take the pack home with him to work on in his basement. (Yes, a bit risky!) The key to effectively diagnosing the bad cells (there are 34 in the Camry pack for this model year) is to put a load on each individual cell and test the voltage. You HAVE TO put a load on the cell before testing it with your meter. He diagnosed three bad cells and replaced those (aftermarket cells cost around $40.) Then he drained all the cells completely and re-charged each one. He returned with the rebuilt pack, installed it, and the car is running fine five months on. He charged me $650 for the overall service with no warranty.

sounds like he did what this guy did http://imgur.com/gallery/j8Bcp

20

I was I could find someone that can do that to my car. I really think that's what's wrong with it. Update since I'm not driving long distance anymore, my MPG is down to 23.5.

1,930

Interesting...I wonder if there are any Toyota Techs familiar with this process ...willing to start a little ...side line...repairing these high maintenance vehicles? Any body out there?

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