Even when pre-heating in the garage before departure, we tend to keep the cabin heater fairly low to minimize the need for engine intervention in cold weather (the heated seats seem to have a lower power draw). But we found we were getting no heat at all. It’s an issue that had been experienced by several other members of the excellent Canadian Pacifica e-Hybrid Owners group on Facebook.
After the always-helpful Crowfoot Dodge did the diagnostics, we were initially told that a new battery pack would be needed, under warranty, and would take a few weeks to source from the US. This was unexpected news and to be honest, pretty concerning, given our PacHy’s low mileage (around 17,000km at the time the fault first emerged).
Fortunately, there had been a miscommunication and the final verdict wasn’t so drastic. A faulty battery heater was causing the problem (also covered under the 10-year high-voltage battery warranty, I believe) and after a four-week wait for parts, was replaced without further issue at the end of November.
The car had been spending more time than usual with the engine running but this changed noticeably after the switch, presumably because the motor wasn’t required as often to generate heat. Average fuel consumption quickly dropped as a result.
Unfortunately, we then had an extremely cold spell through late-December and into the start of January. With the temperature outside consistently at or below -25°C, our unheated garage was never going to be warm enough to keep the battery conditioned for electric running right out of the blocks. A few short journeys around town (it was too cold to go further afield!) quickly pushed the average consumption up to 10L/100km (23.5mpg), a figure that fell rapidly again when the cold spell passed.
A further side effect of the extreme cold was that the tire pressures were showing consistently to be below the recommended minimum. Short trips were insufficient to generate enough heat to raise the pressure, but again, the warning cleared as soon as the outside temperature rose.
Otherwise, there’s not much else to report. The car is running fine again now. The Continental VikingContact 7 winter tires were refitted at the end of October and have kept us mobile in the snow, ice and slush. The WeatherTech mats, which we leave in year-round, are keeping the floor clear of salt and grit. Until next time!