Motor starting while in Park

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by Geor99, Sep 6, 2019.

  1. Geor99

    Geor99 Active Member

    I've brought this up before without ever getting an answer that everyone on the forum thought was feasible.

    Today, I got in the car and turned it on. Before driving off the phone rang, so I sat in park to talk.

    Within 3 minutes the motor cranked on. I attached a pic.

    Any theories???

    Attached Files:

  2. Dan Albrich

    Dan Albrich Active Member

    If it is the case that you mostly or always drive all electric and perhaps hardly ever use the engine then we do know the car is designed to occassionally force the ICE to run. i.e. to keep it from sitting idle for too long a period. If that fits your situation, then nothing to worry about and I'd disregard the rest of my message here.

    Also and with the thought that maybe it's helpful to confirm this isn't normal; I've had my Clarity for almost 1 year now. This has never happened to me.
    (and I don't mean it like 'too bad for you.' I simply mean this may be anomalous behavior that others may not of seen).
    I do use the gas engine at regular intervals, at least once every 2 months, but sometimes more often (i.e. this summer, I've done more long trips).

    Since it seems somewhat innocuous I'm not sure what I would do. I would likely take to my dealer, and have them at least document, and pull any codes. i.e. Should the issue worsen or come with other anomalous issues down the road.
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2019
    jdonalds likes this.
  3. Kerbe

    Kerbe Active Member

    Was the AC running?
  4. stacey burke

    stacey burke Active Member

    Every once in a while the ICE has to run to lub the barrings, piston rings, Etc. It is just how it is programmed.
  5. Geor99

    Geor99 Active Member

  6. Geor99

    Geor99 Active Member

    I average 1-2 miles per day when the ev runs to 0. On my way to work, I'm generally a couple of miles short of ev. I get home with 10 to spare- must be an elevation thing.
  7. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    +1 on the occasional System Start to keep the ICE lubed and read to run at a moments notice. Also we need to know how much charge you had in the battery to puzzle this out. And the temp setting on your ac and the ambient temp along with whether the car was parked in the sun and was very hot.
  8. Geor99

    Geor99 Active Member

    Check out the picture that I posted. It has all of your answers including showing it parked in the sun.
    KentuckyKen likes this.
  9. ClarityBill

    ClarityBill Active Member

    Sounds like it is not an engine maintenance start.

    Does anyone know if the the engine runs when the battery gets too hot? To take the load off the battery. Mine seems to limit charging when it is parked in the sun.
  10. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    Sorry, I missed that. I think I see what’s going on now.
    Climate control set at maximum low temperature plus car in the sun = “The climate control system is in heavy use” which page 13 of the manual says is one of the 5 circumstances that may cause the engine to turn on or not turn off if already on.
    So I’d call that normal behavior.
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2019
  11. Dan Albrich

    Dan Albrich Active Member

    Also, and a little off-topic- I happen to live on a hill (and it's steep with about 800-1000 ft elevation gain in short order). Coming down the hill, my car frequently starts the gas engine at the base of the hill to dissipate the extra energy. Another known reason ICE may start.

    I can avoid the gas engine starting going down my hill if I both run the heater, and use the break (not paddles) to slow.
  12. Geor99

    Geor99 Active Member

    I have used a similar process, but on this occasion it started with a battery with 15 ev miles while in park.
  13. Geor99

    Geor99 Active Member

    Hello Guys,

    It happened again today, when the car was cold and it was only 75F outside. This causes me to now doubt the theory that the car is performing some sort of cooling operation.

    I attached another pic.

    Attached Files:

  14. 2002

    2002 Well-Known Member

    I don't think I have ever turned on my car and seen 2.2 miles EV range. Or at least it's rare. If my car gets down to about 3 miles or less when I shut it off, the next time I turn it on it usually says 0 EV range and will be in HV mode (although ICE usually doesn't come right on like yours does). Not saying that has anything to do with your problem since I know you have seen the engine come on with higher EV range, but I'm just wondering if my car (or driving habits) are less common that my car always seems to set to 0 if my EV range is very low when I shut it off.
  15. Ray B

    Ray B Active Member

    What is the "i" notification referring to?
  16. Geor99

    Geor99 Active Member

    Oil change alert. I'm waiting until a year, since I use very little gas.
  17. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member

    Partial ditto. When I shut off with 2 EV miles left, our Clarity comes back on with 0 EV miles--but then the ICE starts up right away in my case.
  18. Candice

    Candice Active Member

    When I shut the car off with anything less than 3-4 miles EV left, my Clarity comes back on with 0 EV miles but the blue line on the EV ranges is up to 12:00 and I can usually get to the free charger which is 3 miles away without using any gas. It seems like the EV range translates into some free electric juice even though the ICE was engaged.
  19. oko

    oko Member

    I see some trash around in the picture. Maybe this is its way of saying that "clean me up" :).
    Candice likes this.
  20. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    Another ditto but with aggravation.
    I was in the rare instance for me of just barely having enough charge to get home (and you know how I hate to run the ICE outside of the the seldom required but needed and appreciated System Checks). I’m watching the EV range and I had 3+ miles and 3 bars so I decided to go <1 mile and get some junk food. All was well until I turned off the car waiting for my order. When I turned it back on the EV range was 0 and the ICE comes on. Grrrrr!!!
    I learned my lesson on that. Evidently, turning off the car causes some kind of internal reset on the algorithm or history or something when you’re close to the edge.
    At least I’ve managed to go 12,000+ miles on 17 gal of gas so I’m not complaining. (Yeah, I don’t take many out of town trips)

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