Toyota Auris owners – 12 volt flat batteries

2012 Toyota Auris Hybrid

As part of Toyota’s rigorous quality control programme, we have investigated the cause of a 12 volt flat battery issue that has left some Toyota Auris drivers unable to start their cars after only a short period without use, usually a couple of days.

We would like to apologise for any disappointment and inconvenience that may have occurred as a result of this issue. But we can now confirm that the cause has been identified and a permanent solution developed.

The following information only applies to any Toyota Auris (including Hybrid) produced between December 2012 and February 2014. If you have an Auris produced after February 2014 your vehicle is not affected by this issue. No other models are involved.

Toyota Auris Hybrid Flat Battery: What causes the issue?

The issue is caused when the hazard switch is partially depressed for a very short period of time, incorrectly activating the car’s CAN-bus electrical communications system. This draws a constant flow of current that can discharge the 12 volt battery if the car is left unused for several days.

How can I prevent this from occurring?

Toyota has published a Technical Service Bulletin to its dealer network advising them of a permanent solution to this issue. The bulletin contains information and software files that will enable technicians to modify the software of the car’s combination meter. This update will prevent the incorrect activation of the CAN-bus system and prevent any potential flat battery concerns arising from this area of the vehicle.

If you still have concerns regarding the 12 volt battery of your current generation Toyota Auris then we recommend you get in touch with your nearest Toyota dealer for further assistance. http://www.toyota.co.uk/find-a-dealer

295 comments

  1. I have had my first Toyota, Auris hybrid 2013, for just over 2 years now and it could well be my last!
    In over 20 years of owning cars I have never had to jump start a car as many times as I have this Auris in the last 6 months.
    As a key worker the car has been used to travel 20 miles 5 days a week, yet I still have to jump start it regularly. Despite the car having a full dealership service within the last 2 weeks and being given a full bill of health I have today found myself having to jump start it again before my nightshift.
    Toyota need to get a grip with what appears to be a very common fault!

  2. This modification was done, a new 12volt battery purchased at £ 100 plus and still have flat battery problems after a few days of non use .
    I think it’s a poor thing to
    jump in the car only to find it won’t start and having to call the AA service,
    Displeased Audi’s Hybrid owner

    1. Hi Colin,
      Thanks for getting in touch with us. We’re sorry to hear this.
      Fundamentally, the vehicle needs to be driven in order for the 12 volt battery to charge. The shorter and fewer journeys that we are currently being encouraged to make do not give the 12 volt battery adequate time to recharge, and this is the same as with any combustion powertrain.
      If you believe that your battery isn’t functioning as it should, we would recommend getting this checked out by your nearest Toyota Centre.
      If you are unhappy with the service you have received from them, our Customer Relations team will be best placed to help you.
      They can be contacted here: https://www.toyota.co.uk/help-centre/email-us.
      Thanks.

  3. I’ve been having problems with my Auris hybrid not starting on and of for years (reg Sept 2011). The past 12 months have been horrendous! I keep the battery display on ALL the time and make sure the battery is fully charged by the time I return home. Then after 3 or 4 days if it’s been frosty, it won’t start. The last time this happened (just over 2 years ago) I had a new battery at great expense. I honestly am at my wits end with it. This is my 2nd toyota and I had the same problem with the first one I bought.

    1. Hi Jo,
      Thanks for your comment. We’re sorry to hear that you’ve been experiencing issues with your Auris battery.
      We would recommend taking your vehicle to your nearest Toyota Centre, who will be able to assess the car and diagnose any potential issues.
      People are currently being encouraged to make fewer journeys, and these are often a quick couple of miles to the local supermarket at most. As with any combustion powertrain, this does not give the 12v battery adequate time to recharge. In the colder months, the increased use of heated seats and air conditioning puts additional strain on the vehicle. This is something that is not unique to Toyota. The decreased usage will impact upon all vehicles, including those with regular combustion engines.
      We have put together some hybrid battery maintenance tips, and these can be viewed here: https://mag.toyota.co.uk/coronavirus-toyota-hybrid-car-maintenance/.
      Thanks.

      1. I’ve checked the link you gave – thank you. But it has left me puzzled:
        Quote -Toyota hybrids generally contain two batteries: a 12-volt battery (which powers systems such as the headlamps and audio) and a high-voltage hybrid system battery (which supplies the power to start the combustion engine and drive the electric motors). – unquote

        Why have my local Toyota garage told me that it’s the 12v battery that starts the engine and have advised they fit another one for £125 – the last one they sold me has only been in the car 3year 2 month and I’ve been having this problem for almost a year.
        SO – can you please confirm WHICH battery starts the engine. And if it is the hybrid one and mine is always fully charged when I return home, why is it not starting intermittently. PS: usually it does start eventually providing I open the garage doors and leave it for a while to get some air! Could it be damp? PPS: I never use the radio, heater or AC anymore and lights are not on automatic anymore either

      2. Hi Jo,

        The hybrid battery technically starts the car, but the 12v battery initiates systems that allow the hybrid battery to switch on. If the 12v battery is flat, the car won’t be able to start.

        Thanks

      3. Hi Jo,

        We just got around to responding to your question. It has now been approved and answered.

        Thanks

  4. I have toyota Auris 2014 model and since last few months I am having a problem with flat battery. I have to jump start my car for most of the time. Even if I drive 50 miles continues and switch off and on my car twice the battery gets flat. I have asked my local garage to check the life of battery and they said its fine nothing wrong with battery. Can you please help me why I am having this problem.

    1. Hi Jitenkumar,
      Thank you for getting in touch. We’re sorry to hear that you have been experiencing issues with your battery.
      If this has not been assessed by your nearest Toyota Centre, we would recommend making an appointment with them in order to do this.
      They will be able to assess your vehicle and diagnose any potential faults.
      We are unable to diagnose your vehicle over the internet, but there is the possibility that not being able to drive a car long distances, such as during the lockdown, may have a negative impact regarding the charge of the 12v battery. As with any combustion powertrain, this does not give the 12v battery adequate time to recharge.
      The ideal situation would be to take longer, more frequent journeys, but we appreciate that this is not possible at the current time.
      Using a trickle charger can help to maintain the charge in the battery and can offer some peace of mind, particularly when a vehicle is left standing for long periods of time. This can be purchased via your nearest Toyota Centre.
      However, as previously mentioned, we would recommend taking your vehicle to your nearest Toyota Centre to be assessed as they will be able to provide a more accurate diagnosis, especially if you are already driving longer distances more frequently.
      Thanks.

  5. I have a Toyota Auris 16 reg. The 12 vilt battery went flat ladt Friday. Had to call the rescue services and was told i beeded a repkacdment. They jump started me but sent me off to drive for 30 mins! I had my battery replaced yesterday costed me 227 euros and I was told that it will need replacjng every 5 years or it can die suddenly. There is no warning light nothing with all the technogy in the car that warns the battery is nearing the end of its life.
    1-this is ahuge week point and I certainly would not consider an Auris again!!
    2- WHY are you as s monufacturer more transparent about costs for the most common oarts and services. One feels completely at the mercy of ones local Toyota dealer. There should be a standard approved fee for this given how common it is.
    3- after the repair i spoke to the mechanic and he told me that the battery failed it had voltage but no current gojng through it. How comes i was able to drive myself to the repair pmace? Abd I drove thd car around for the three days prior. Isee aconflict of jnterest jn having thd car serviced by a Toyota dealer. No diubt you are thd best people toservice but also the worst! For all we know your jnternal policy might be to try and get the customer to replace as many parts as posdible during the lifetime of the car so you guys stay jn business feels like amafia thing with no transparency! Not a nice experience more like extorsion with an explanation.

    1. Hi Livia,
      Thanks for your comment.
      We would recommend contacting Toyota Ireland with your concerns.
      Thanks.

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