Do you want 5+ MPG back during the cold months? Restrict air flow to the radiator. - Page 3 - Toyota RAV4 Forums
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post #21 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-09-2017, 07:24 PM
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I blocked both grill openings with black corrugated plastic from Home Depot, one zip tie on each end of both, you're not blocking airflow thru the radiator, just the forced outside air thru the grill, there's plenty of space for air to reach the radiator and the fan will force air thru the radiator if engine temps get too warm when it warms up a bit, the fan coming on will tell me if it needs more air. Daily temps are predicted to be between 20ºF and 43ºF for the next week or so. I had enough of the 2x3 sheet to do the big lower grill opening on my wife's '15 Prius too with about a third of sheet left if I need to do the smaller upper openings.

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post #22 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-09-2017, 07:57 PM Thread Starter
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there's plenty of space for air to reach the radiator and the fan will force air thru the radiator if engine temps get too warm
I got this impression also, and might block the whole grille area too. The only downside is the outside temperature sensor is in the corner of the lower grille, so it will not get direct air flow over it anymore.

I drove yesterday in 24F weather, and hit a traffic jam with 7 bars on the battery. Cabin temperature set to 70F with the blower the on lowest setting.

By the time my battery got to 3 bars and the ICE kicked on, coolant temperature was reporting 140F through OBDII. So it's still cooling off a bit too quickly.


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post #23 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-09-2017, 08:01 PM
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I have some concern about the inverter cooler part of the radiator, the gen 3 prius owners block just the bottom grill because the upper grill serves the inverter cooler, not sure what part of the radiator has the inverter cooling on the 4.4HV, so I may have to reduced the coverage of the blocking.

https://priuschat.com/threads/2010-p...trategy.62556/

http://www.cleanmpg.com/community/in...threads/17560/

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post #24 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-10-2017, 04:20 PM
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I'm pretty sure inverter cooler is on top of the radiator, so I removed the upper block, will test without it first, then modify it to block ~50% and check again. Will take a while since I don't drive much this time of year.

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post #25 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-10-2017, 05:17 PM
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It sure seems to yield some better mileage. Haven't seen anything less than 6.0L/100km for months in my commute..


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post #26 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 10:09 AM Thread Starter
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It sure seems to yield some better mileage. Haven't seen anything less than 6.0L/100km for months in my commute..
6L/100km - 5.2L/100km = 6 MPG improvement. And it's not even that cold at 2C.

What areas did you block so far?


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post #27 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 03:15 PM
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6L/100km - 5.2L/100km = 6 MPG improvement. And it's not even that cold at 2C.

What areas did you block so far?
Same as you, upper 100% covered, nothing in lower (although LED bar covers maybe 5-10% inside)

Cooleant temps are fine havent seen more than 81c with ScanGauge

Did you experiment more? Do we need to worry about inverter cooler
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post #28 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 03:58 PM Thread Starter
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I haven't experimented more since it was snowy and wet here. Coolant temp of 81C is right where it should be with a 180F thermostat.

It definitely would not overheat in the winter with some blocking. It's tough to tell what is the state of the thermostat just by the coolant temperature. But judging that my coolant temperatures drop very quickly when the ICE shuts off, that tells me there is no latent heat, and the thermostat is probably closed.

I have a few temperature sensors that I can tape to the hoses going in and out of the ICE radiator and the hybrid drive radiator. Then I'll be able to see exactly what's going on while driving.

Does anybody have TechStream? Are there any temperature sensors visible in addition to what OBDII sees?


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post #29 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-17-2017, 04:35 PM
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Anyone experimented more? Facts so far: It saves quit alot around freezing confirmed by me and BobVila.

Anyone tried lower and kept upper open?


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post #30 of 45 (permalink) Old 01-17-2017, 04:53 PM
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Not me, haven't driven hardly any since the we got 11" of snow last week which is still here, drove around in the snow a bit just to see how the AWD-I worked, no issues, it did seem to wam up quicker with just the bottom grill blocked. I've been retired for 15yrs, so I don't drive unless I have to in this kind of weather, getting freezing rain now, tomorrow it's supposed to get above freezing.

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