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2011 RX450h 12V battery - a possible solution


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I needed to find a replacement for the Panasonic S55D23L Battery as it was not holding charge for very long. A straight replacement of a Lexus dealer was over 300 quid, so I decided to see if there was a possible alternative. I found Yuasa YBX 5005 to be a like for like replacement in terms of the housing as it fits perfectly in the space without any modifications. The main issue is of course that it is not an AGM type and needs to be vented. While the Battery itself does not come with any accessories I rang Yuasa UK and they kindly posted a vent plug and an elbow. The vent is on both sides so, one end needs to be blocked off and the other connected to a hose. It took about 20 minutes to swap the Battery. These batteries go for £78 on amazon, so even if it lasts 3 years, it is still worth it. They are of 65Ah capacity, so very much on par with the revised Panasonic (70Ah) that the dealer quoted me for.
I’ll keep an eye on it to see how it performs and report. 

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I needed to find a replacement for the Panasonic S55D23L Battery as it was not holding charge for very long. A straight replacement of a Lexus dealer was over 300 quid, so I decided to see if there wa

The YBX 5005 has the rollover-proof lid and is tested for such event.

Back to batteries! Some of you folks will be aware that Lexus Parts Direct were reducing the discount they gave us to as not to be so close as trade prices.  I therefore checked their web site to

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It's not so much the venting that's the problem.

The reason AGM batteries were fitted OEM was for safety reasons because if the car rolls in an accident the acid cannot leak out into the cabin and pose a danger to the occupants. Some consider it a risk not worth taking but if you're happy with the risk then yes, a standard 'wet' Battery can be fitted.

EDIT:

Lexus Parts Direct are currently out of stock but charge £187.26 for the OEM here.

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1 hour ago, Walus said:

I needed to find a replacement for the Panasonic S55D23L battery as it was not holding charge for very long. A straight replacement of a Lexus dealer was over 300 quid, ...

Lexus webpage is quoting £235 for a Battery replacement. https://www.lexus.co.uk/owners/servicing-and-maintenance/lexus-essential-care/

It is annoying when dealers would quote higher than the official Lexus price. Which dealer did you get the quote from for over £300?

I had my fair share of Lexus dealers marking up prices of simple items such as brake discs or pads and only agree to "price match" when I refer to the official price.

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Just now, CT200h-TL said:

It is annoying when dealers would quote higher than the official Lexus price. Which dealer did you get the quote from for over £300? 

That was a dealer in Eire. They quoted 320 euro just for the Battery. They charge what they want, typically 30-50% more than in UK.

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2 hours ago, Herbie said:

It's not so much the venting that's the problem.

The reason AGM batteries were fitted OEM was for safety reasons because if the car rolls in an accident the acid cannot leak out into the cabin and pose a danger to the occupants. Some consider it a risk not worth taking but if you're happy with the risk then yes, a standard 'wet' battery can be fitted.

EDIT:

Lexus Parts Direct are currently out of stock but charge £187.26 for the OEM here.

Lots of vehicles have their 12 volt batteries in the boot area, my Mini did and it was of course in 1976 a wet Battery. I remember the Battery cable shorting out where it exited the boot ...now that was exciting. 😀

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5 hours ago, Walus said:

I needed to find a replacement for the Panasonic S55D23L battery as it was not holding charge for very long. A straight replacement of a Lexus dealer was over 300 quid, so I decided to see if there was a possible alternative. I found Yuasa YBX 5005 to be a like for like replacement in terms of the housing as it fits perfectly in the space without any modifications. The main issue is of course that it is not an AGM type and needs to be vented. While the battery itself does not come with any accessories I rang Yuasa UK and they kindly posted a vent plug and an elbow. The vent is on both sides so, one end needs to be blocked off and the other connected to a hose. It took about 20 minutes to swap the battery. These batteries go for £78 on Amazon, so even if it lasts 3 years, it is still worth it. They are of 65Ah capacity, so very much on par with the revised Panasonic (70Ah) that the dealer quoted me for.
I’ll keep an eye on it to see how it performs and report. 

BE9435FD-9302-4738-B988-45D08363FCE9.jpeg

£300 is a little steep! I paid £228 Inc VAT & labour a couple of months ago at Lexus Woodford. Well done finding an aftermarket alternative though.

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6 hours ago, Walus said:

I needed to find a replacement for the Panasonic S55D23L battery as it was not holding charge for very long. A straight replacement of a Lexus dealer was over 300 quid, so I decided to see if there was a possible alternative. I found Yuasa YBX 5005 to be a like for like replacement in terms of the housing as it fits perfectly in the space without any modifications. The main issue is of course that it is not an AGM type and needs to be vented. While the battery itself does not come with any accessories I rang Yuasa UK and they kindly posted a vent plug and an elbow. The vent is on both sides so, one end needs to be blocked off and the other connected to a hose. It took about 20 minutes to swap the battery. These batteries go for £78 on Amazon, so even if it lasts 3 years, it is still worth it. They are of 65Ah capacity, so very much on par with the revised Panasonic (70Ah) that the dealer quoted me for.
I’ll keep an eye on it to see how it performs and report. 

BE9435FD-9302-4738-B988-45D08363FCE9.jpeg

where did you buy Yuasa YBX 5005 Battery? Now I am tempted to cancel my tomorrow's slot for replacing the Battery at the dealership!

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1 hour ago, miti said:

where did you buy Yuasa YBX 5005 battery? Now I am tempted to cancel my tomorrow's slot for replacing the battery at the dealership!

He says in the post above that they are available from amazon for £78. However, if you just Google it you'll see they are available from lots of places including here at the battery shop for £64.99 plus about £10 delivery.

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I spoke with Yuasa Technical as one of several Battery producers when I looked for a suitable replacement for the Panasonic S55D23L Battery in my 2015 RX450h.  I was advised that they do not do a correct Battery for the car and they confirmed that the Battery should be an AGM deep cycle discharge Battery of the type originally fitted.  (You will get this advice if you speak with the properly qualified people at any major Battery manufacturer).  It is not just just a question of leaking acid in an accident, although in the case of a standard lead acid Battery suffering damage to its case will spew acid despite any reinforced parts.  The acid in the AGM is held within the Glass Matt and will be contained.  The AGM Battery can work at any angle, even up side down.  But although the standard Battery will work, it will not work as well at the specified AGM Battery.  This is an extract from a Warning by Yuasa :-

 

For the aftermarket replacement of the original equipment Battery, IT IS ESSENTIAL to replace batteries with like-for-like technology, i.e. if vehicle is fitted with an original equipment AGM or EFB technology Battery, it should be replaced with the recommended Yuasa AGM or EFB Battery of equivalent size.

"Caution!

If a vehicle was registered after 2008, and the Battery has clearly been replaced in the past, it is essential that the Yuasa vehicle fitment guide is checked to determine if an AGM/EFB Battery was originally fitted. It is important to explain to customers that fitting a Battery of incorrect technology to a vehicle will cause issues.

If a standard flooded Battery is fitted to a Start-Stop vehicle, it will most definitely fail very early. Depending on driving patterns, failure could be within 2-4 months of installation. This type of Battery failure will lead to loss of vehicle functions (including Start-Stop). It will also mean inconvenience for the customer and dissatisfaction with the replacement Battery. "

Note in particular the last paragraph.

There is only one suitable alternative to the correct type of VRLA AGM Battery that I could find for the Panasonic Battery and I couldn't find anybody who would import it unless an order for 100+ was provided.  This is the Hankook AXS55D23L.   The larger Hankook AXS5526L is available in the UK but is too long to be accommodated in the allotted space in the boot.

I did do a thread on this some months ago if you want more detail.

ps  This is an interesting lesson on Hybrid batteries.  Professor Kelly uses the Prius as an example but same principle as on RX450h AGM Battery :- https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=257&utm_source=LexusOwnersClubUK&utm_medium=ForumLinks&v=M53Hbh5wpRQ&feature=youtu.be

 

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6 hours ago, Barry14UK said:

If a standard flooded battery is fitted to a Start-Stop vehicle, it will most definitely fail very early. Depending on driving patterns, failure could be within 2-4 months of installation. This type of battery failure will lead to loss of vehicle functions (including Start-Stop). It will also mean inconvenience for the customer and dissatisfaction with the replacement battery. "

This is all true in a case when the battery is used for cranking the engine. In the hybrid system the 12V battery is only used to power the auxiliary components. It is the high voltage battery in the hybrid that turns the electric motor/generator, which in turn cranks the engine.

 

 

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13 hours ago, JeffL said:

Yuasa batteries, Japanese company, very good reputation.

Had mine for 5 years - still like new.

Looks very solid, very sealed - feel safe and happy.

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As a matter of interest, what voltage readings do you guys get on a 12V Battery and an overnight voltage drop (i.e. 12h discharge) when a vehicle is parked up?

Is there a service mode that one can use to monitor the voltage level of the said Battery via the infotainment system?

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8 hours ago, Barry14UK said:

"......Caution!

If a vehicle was registered after 2008, and the battery has clearly been replaced in the past, it is essential that the Yuasa vehicle fitment guide is checked to determine if an AGM/EFB battery was originally fitted. It is important to explain to customers that fitting a battery of incorrect technology to a vehicle will cause issues.

If a standard flooded battery is fitted to a Start-Stop vehicle, it will most definitely fail very early. Depending on driving patterns, failure could be within 2-4 months of installation. This type of battery failure will lead to loss of vehicle functions (including Start-Stop). It will also mean inconvenience for the customer and dissatisfaction with the replacement battery. "

Note in particular the last paragraph.

....."

 

Although the hybrid is classed as a "Start-Stop Vehicle", it doesn't use the 12v Battery to start the engine - the Hybrid electric traction motor (MG1) is used to start the engine and therefore the load is not on the 12v Battery.

from Wiki:

The HSD system replaces the geared transmission, alternator, and starter motor with:

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2 hours ago, Walus said:

As a matter of interest, what voltage readings do you guys get on a 12V battery and an overnight voltage drop (i.e. 12h discharge) when a vehicle is parked up?

Is there a service mode that one can use to monitor the voltage level of the said battery via the infotainment system?

Not as far as I know but you could easily fit a USB voltmeter like I have and just tap it off the power socket next to it.


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738085369_batterycharge.thumb.jpg.9837c730930e468e14051f2c945af907.jpg

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Thanks Herbie, interesting stuff. I found that one can access the service menu via:

"Press the ON button once, then I press and hold the menu button (above and to the left of the remote controller) while flipping the light switch to the on and then the off position rapidly 3-4 times until the Main Menu appears (make sure you flip the light switch to On not Auto) - The Service Main Menu will appear:"img_20180326_102750_0fd72b42391787bc0e457db899b91f5528ff23f2.thumb.jpg.5406caea6475991eea8473c3b5d8a36f.jpgimg_20180326_102814_2ffb373f501d7a1291963513045a18ed00f38c22.thumb.jpg.25cd08a1e3807ea7c2f1774fde272c0d.jpgimg_20180326_102824_ece35a8aa1d2cb9774ecea448bbef221888989b1.thumb.jpg.4ead6e92bf27ff4e512d6d2cbb4ad385.jpg

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Of course nobody wants to spend more than they have to on a Battery and it is tempting to buy something that fits.  I think almost  everybody here is aware that the 12v battery in a Lexus Hybrid models does not crank the engine and certainly the top technical people at the major Battery companies are aware of this. I spent the best part of 3 days investigating this and checking if others had come up with a suitable alternative in the USA, Europe and other countries.  The highly regarded instructor Professor Kelly explained in his video I linked to on the Prius which works in the same way as the Lexus that the Battery should be an AGM. 

I did find some AGM models that might serve but either the terminals were wrongly positioned  or as the two batteries linked to here, due to the recessed position it would be necessary to reroute the earth lead, lengthen it or use a different earthing point.  (The positive terminal would probably be OK to connect to).  As some adaption would be needed rather than plug and play, I did not look for better prices elsewhere. I looked to see how a Battery length of 243mm would fit into my car and I think it would just about go although it might be necessary to move the spare wheel over a little. https://advancedbatterysupplies.co.uk/product/advanced-xd-027-agm-battery-stop-start-technology/

It is the case that most AGM batteries come with the dual function of providing the dual capability of cranking the engine (hence high CCA which is not necessary with Lexus/Toyota Hybrids), and the ability to support other functions not dependent on the traction Battery required by our cars.

22 hours ago, steve2006 said:

Lots of vehicles have their 12 volt batteries in the boot area, my Mini did and it was of course in 1976 a wet battery. I remember the battery cable shorting out where it exited the boot ...now that was exciting. 😀

Lots of developments since then, especially with computers and modules, drive by wire and various safety as well as technical innovations!  I did go back a long way on this forum and found pictures of an in car Battery that had exploded so I guess that produced some exciting moments too!!

 

 

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I could not find any AGM Battery other than the Panasonic S55D23L that would be suitable in terms of spec and size. If they were a good match in terms of Ah rating, the case was not adequate to be clamped securely in the booth.

The Yuasa YBX 5005 I have chosen seems the closest match even though it is not an AGM. It has been designed to be used in cabin compartments and is VDA roll-over compliant. It is a high performance, low internal resistance Battery. So all in all the best alternative out there imo.

 

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I’ve just ordered a CTEK MXS Battery charger and the manual suggests that it is suitable for in vehicle Battery charging. Is there anything against using it for charging the 12V Battery without disconnecting it from the vehicle? Thanks. 
 

Edit: Herbie, you seem to have additional leads hooked up to the Battery in your RX (as per the picture). I assume these are for an easy in vehicle charging? IMG_20190116_123616.jpg.c11cfe00f7679ee5

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1 hour ago, Walus said:

Edit: Herbie, you seem to have additional leads hooked up to the battery in your RX (as per the picture). I assume these are for an easy in vehicle charging?

Sort of Tom.

Sod's Law suggests that if you need a jump start then it'll probably be on a cold, wet and windy night rather than a nice sunny day, so rather than mess about getting access to the Battery itself (wife's mobility scooter usually in there) or risk losing the small plastic clips that hold the engine covers on to get access to the fusebox jump terminal, I thought I would fit a more convenient jump starting connection.

That wiring is to a connector that I installed in the luggage area - only to later realise that if the Battery is dead then you can't manually open the tailgate from outside as there is no key barrel  :wallbash:

So I left that connector in place and rectified my mistake by fitting another one in the lower level centre console, details of which are below:

 

 

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