Toyota Rav4 EV Forum

2013 Rav4 EV Owner Since 2016 - Owner Experience
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Author:  Gazoo [ Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:14 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 2013 Rav4 EV Owner Since 2016 - Owner Experience

TonyWilliams wrote:
3) The onboard charger issue could have been anything, and clearly, this dealer was way out of their element. I wish you would have called us at QC Charge, even if just for free advice and emotional support. We repair these cars almost daily.

Thanks for the offer. I have lurked on these forums long enough to know the value of Tony Williams and QC Charge and your value to this ownership group. You are probably right. I probably could have made a better fiscal decision that involved some sort of repair on the car and I definitely learned the difference between a warranty (sold my a manufacturer of a good) and a used car warranty (essentially an insurance policy sold by an insurance company and we all know how much fun dealing with insurance companies is). You replied to a post of mine early on regarding my initial problems with the car and there were multiple posts that you contributed to that helped me during my ownership of the car. In the end it just was too much drama especially in the last year when it became the primary driver for my wife who had the longer commute. I haven't given up on EV's, but I think I will let the industry age a bit more before I step back in.

Author:  TonyWilliams [ Fri Nov 08, 2019 6:16 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: 2013 Rav4 EV Owner Since 2016 - Owner Experience

Yes, of course the Mercedes and RAV4 EV share the same motor.

Author:  n3ckf [ Tue Nov 12, 2019 2:44 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 2013 Rav4 EV Owner Since 2016 - Owner Experience

I just passed 90K miles with my 2013 that i've owned since it was new and its still perking along. I have JDEMO on it but i dont use it that much (because now i live in the Sierra's full time since retiring and i rarely drive anywhere thats far enough i need to charge away from home. The only time i use it is when i swap it to my son in the Bay Area. "reported" range is down to about 75 miles at "full" (not extended) charge, extended charge does nothing on the car now (in fact it breaks charging). However you dont get any additional range from it anyway. However its great for trips to Lowes and such which is what i use the car for now.

(And yeah i have a TeslaModel3 now too, which i just drove 5700miles to Texas, Iowa and back here, the longest trip i've ever made in an electric-only vehicle).

I have had the experience of charging the car from my whole-house Propane generator because of PG&E now, and that even works.

Author:  KurtManz [ Sat Nov 30, 2019 2:20 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 2013 Rav4 EV Owner Since 2016 - Owner Experience

I'm late to this thread... but I'll add my $0.02
These cars can be the source of some character building adventures.
My last one was that I let the Entune Membership expire... bad mistake... You'd think that calling back and updating credit card information, see charge go through would fix this...
oh no. no no no. no for this car... The money was charged, but the entune app would not work. It must be that I need a new contract ID and figure out where they hid that menu!
oh no. no no no. not this time mr. smart pans... that won't work again!

Long story short it took about 3 days and probably 10 hours on the phone with 3 different toyota departments referring me to each other in a loop. (entune, "customer experience", and some other group)... eventually I found one audacious rep who made it his mission to figure out how to fix this... and found the "environmental department".
"Well that's a new one, I never heard of that one " I said... and from the receiver I heard back a chuckle and a "you're not the only one bud...".

I guess we're buds now... this could be good.

They sent me the the place I should have known to look for in the first place: Alex G. The current guy in charge of Rav4EVs. He knew what was up.. told me to wait a couple of days for him to contact the IT department to change something in their back end.

A couple of days later things just started magically working.

While I was on the phone with him I asked him about service for these cars outside of Ca. He said a number of toyota dealers now were able to service them. ToK is one of them... so maybe things are better now?

I'm getting close to the 50K mark... I expect at that point I'll start looking for advice on changing the coolants. I don't want them to become corrosive and create problems... so I'm sure another character building adventure awaits in the new year!!

Aasavage seems to have had good luck at ToS.. so I'll call them too next year to see if they'd do it.

Tony: any advice on changing the coolants? I don't remember having found advice about that...

Author:  asavage [ Mon Dec 02, 2019 1:36 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 2013 Rav4 EV Owner Since 2016 - Owner Experience

Yes, I can recommend Toyota of Seattle for service. Aside from the delaaaaaay in letting me know it was on me to get the car shipped to Calif. for the battery change, they've been good, and I'm picky about service, so that means something.

Author:  TonyWilliams [ Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:39 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: 2013 Rav4 EV Owner Since 2016 - Owner Experience

KurtManz wrote:
Tony: any advice on changing the coolants? I don't remember having found advice about that...

You can use pH strips to determine if the coolant is ready to be changed:

Testing the Coolant pH

pH testing is performed whenever cooling system maintenance service is requested, or if there is reason to suspect the coolant has outlived its useful life. It can be accomplished with test strips that turn color based on the level of acidity in the coolant, or electronic testers that measure the pH of the coolant directly can be used. pH testing of coolant is a great way to determine if the corrosion inhibitors are still working in the anti-freeze. As corrosion inhibitors break down over time, the solution of water and anti-freeze will become more acidic. As the acid level builds, so will corrosion and electrolysis in the cooling system. If the coolant is left in this acidic condition, it will create permanent erosion to component surfaces that may require replacement of affected components.
To test the coolant pH, follow the steps:

1. Ensure that the coolant is relatively cool before removing the radiator cap.

2. If using a pH test strip kit, read the instructions to know how long to dip the strip in the coolant, and how long to wait to compare the color of the test pad to the chart. Also, some strips have a second test pad on the strip that indicates the percentage of anti-freeze in the coolant, so verify the time for that also.

3. Dip litmus paper into the coolant and wait the amount of time directed by the instructions. Compare the color of the litmus paper to the color scale on the kit.

Author:  KurtManz [ Thu Feb 13, 2020 3:16 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 2013 Rav4 EV Owner Since 2016 - Owner Experience

Thank you Tony!
quick question... how much would your shop change for a coolant replacement?

long story...

I have been using test strips for over a year since I read one of your suggestions.
The values are still in the "ok" range and I have never lost any level with either of them.

I love this car and I want to keep it in as best condition as possible. it's just a funny feeling to have that you don't really have to do much beyond tire maintenance...

so I did something today...

I went to Toyota of Kirkland to ask about the 50K service (last weekend it turned 50K!) and

1. Good news: Yes, Toyota of Kirkland now does have techs who are certified to work on these cars. they told me that mine was the 2nd R4EV they'd seen this week and they could do it the same day.

2. Not so good news: Initially ToK quoted me $130 over the phone to do the service. That seemed reasonable, so I went there. But when I got there they changed the quote to $550. If I wanted to have ONLY the fluids replaced that would be $435. Oops. So I told them very politely that I would shop around and compare prices.

So I called Toyota of Seattle. They initially gave me the old story of "we have to call someone from Cali to help with this", and a few hours later they called and said that they could do the service in the ship after all. Price?. $420... (and later they called yet again to say they'd discovered that one of the coolants was the blue one that they didn't normally have and was more expensive... to their credit they offered to use the one I can buy on amazon for $25/gallon if I provided it myself)

So that left me wondering... is $450 comparable to what a similar service for an ICE would cost?

Author:  asavage [ Thu Feb 13, 2020 3:23 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 2013 Rav4 EV Owner Since 2016 - Owner Experience

Kurt, they can't just use the coolant evacuatator they'd use on an ICE. IIRC, some valves have to be commanded to open during the procedure, unlike an ICE.

Honestly, without recalling the details, I remember looking into it a couple years back and thought to myself, "dealership rates".

Since I knew I'd be having the DU replaced before 60k, I skated the coolant change until then.

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