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Old 01-08-2017, 02:48 PM   #1
Garyhouser
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Default 2009 Saturn vue Hybrid CHargin issue in extreme cold

Hey all, I am having trouble with my 2009 hybrid vue (120k miles). A few weeks ago when it was -14 f my wife was driving her vue and the battery died and the car was stuck on the road. Lucky just down the road. I went and jumped it and couldnt get it to stay running so we towed it back. I stuck it on the charger in the heated garage clean all the terminals and started it up to run tests on it. Everything ran and tested perfect. There was a few error codes that I wrote down (U0112 and P0700) are the two that I can remember. They were gone after I reconnected the battery and they didnt come back until 2 days ago when it was -4 f. The problem happened again except this time it was warming up in the driveway. The car is in the garage now on the charger.

Why would the BAS fail to charge the battery only when it's 0 or below? Thank you in advance..

Last edited by Garyhouser; 01-08-2017 at 02:54 PM..

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Old 01-08-2017, 04:28 PM   #2
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Default Re: 2009 Saturn vue Hybrid CHargin issue in extreme cold

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Originally Posted by Garyhouser View Post
Hey all, I am having trouble with my 2009 hybrid vue (120k miles). A few weeks ago when it was -14 f my wife was driving her vue and the battery died and the car was stuck on the road. Lucky just down the road. I went and jumped it and couldnt get it to stay running so we towed it back. I stuck it on the charger in the heated garage clean all the terminals and started it up to run tests on it. Everything ran and tested perfect. There was a few error codes that I wrote down (U0112 and P0700) are the two that I can remember. They were gone after I reconnected the battery and they didnt come back until 2 days ago when it was -4 f. The problem happened again except this time it was warming up in the driveway. The car is in the garage now on the charger.

Why would the BAS fail to charge the battery only when it's 0 or below? Thank you in advance..
I'll start by saying I know zip about hybrid Vue's ... but I do have a couple of suggestions.

I would rig a way to do full-time monitoring of 12 volt battery voltage as I suspect a marginal voltage providing/regulating system. The system is possibly barely able to maintain battery charging when temps are above 0 but is inadequate when colder temps increase electrical load.

Normal Vue's with engine at idle and using typical electrical loads such as fuel pump, ignition, control modules and ABS pump will consume most of the alternator/generator output leaving little power to charge battery.

If you then maintain idle to warm vehicle and add use of HVAC blower motor, lights, radio and rear window defrost you're not only using all alternator/generator power but are also borrowing power from the battery.

You'll know when battery power is marginal if lights get brighter, or HVAC blower increases speed when you increase RPM above idle.

Hybrids have extra layers of complexity, including coolant pumps, and more batteries to charge. So, if the 12 volt power circuit is a marginal performer the total electrical load could be overwhelming the 12 volt circuit.

I have a ScanGauge which I leave plugged into the OBD connector so I can monitor electrical supply to the battery when ignition key is ON. You could use something similar or perhaps just connect a voltmeter to one of the 12 volt fuses in I/P fuse block.

You'd normally expect to see voltages above 13.5 when engine is running, especially when RPM's are above 1200.

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Old 01-08-2017, 04:53 PM   #3
Garyhouser
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Default Re: 2009 Saturn vue Hybrid CHargin issue in extreme cold

Quote:
Originally Posted by far2grumpy View Post
I'll start by saying I know zip about hybrid Vue's ... but I do have a couple of suggestions.

I would rig a way to do full-time monitoring of 12 volt battery voltage as I suspect a marginal voltage providing/regulating system. The system is possibly barely able to maintain battery charging when temps are above 0 but is inadequate when colder temps increase electrical load.

Normal Vue's with engine at idle and using typical electrical loads such as fuel pump, ignition, control modules and ABS pump will consume most of the alternator/generator output leaving little power to charge battery.

If you then maintain idle to warm vehicle and add use of HVAC blower motor, lights, radio and rear window defrost you're not only using all alternator/generator power but are also borrowing power from the battery.

You'll know when battery power is marginal if lights get brighter, or HVAC blower increases speed when you increase RPM above idle.

Hybrids have extra layers of complexity, including coolant pumps, and more batteries to charge. So, if the 12 volt power circuit is a marginal performer the total electrical load could be overwhelming the 12 volt circuit.

I have a ScanGauge which I leave plugged into the OBD connector so I can monitor electrical supply to the battery when ignition key is ON. You could use something similar or perhaps just connect a voltmeter to one of the 12 volt fuses in I/P fuse block.

You'd normally expect to see voltages above 13.5 when engine is running, especially when RPM's are above 1200.
Thanks for the suggestion when I tested it when everything was working and running the battery tested at 14.3 ill try and test it when its really cold to see if its different. thanks

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Old 01-08-2017, 05:19 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2009 Saturn vue Hybrid CHargin issue in extreme cold

Just got the car started. i had to unhook the battery to charge it as the keys were stuck in the ignition. lost all error codes . letting it run for awhile now. Currently its 18 degrees and has 14.5v coming out of the battery.

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Old 01-08-2017, 07:07 PM   #5
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Default Re: 2009 Saturn vue Hybrid CHargin issue in extreme cold

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Just got the car started. i had to unhook the battery to charge it as the keys were stuck in the ignition. lost all error codes . letting it run for awhile now. Currently its 18 degrees and has 14.5v coming out of the battery.
Engine off and 12.6 volts is a solid charge - but battery should stay at that voltage for several hours with no load.

It'll be interesting to check charge voltage when temps so south of 0.

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Old 01-08-2017, 10:04 PM   #6
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Default Re: 2009 Saturn vue Hybrid CHargin issue in extreme cold

It looks like you are on the right track.

Be sure to test, inspect the battery and battery cables well (they need to be perfect), Also test your battery cables for a voltage drop. Just the cables under the hood.

Touch volt meter red lead to Battery positive post and black lead on the other end of the same cable @ fuse block, test again black lead @ the starter. More than 0.3 volts is to much. Test/monitor volt meter while a helper cranks the engine or a least with accessories on.
Test the negative cable with black lead on negative post and red lead on the engine block ground.

With the engine running is the red battery light ever on?
Did the engine stall or just not restart?

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Old 01-09-2017, 09:55 AM   #7
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Default Re: 2009 Saturn vue Hybrid CHargin issue in extreme cold

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Old 01-09-2017, 09:58 AM   #8
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Default Re: 2009 Saturn vue Hybrid CHargin issue in extreme cold

Hi now it is running perfect after i charged the battery and it warmed up outside. I'll have to wait until it's really cold again to test it when it's having issues.
The battery light comes on right before the car dies. Yeah the car stalled out light flickered and the was no more juice in the battery.

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