Stays in ICE mode with full battery - 2017+ Chrysler Pacifica Minivan Forums
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 07:02 PM Thread Starter
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Stays in ICE mode with full battery

A few days ago while driving, my instrument cluster popped up with the message: "Fuel and oil refresh mode in progress. Engine running."

This message pops up every time I start to drive, within a couple of blocks, and the vehicle stays in Hybrid mode, even with a full battery charge. It returns to electric after I turn the vehicle off, and then start it again, but switches back to this engine only mode after a short time.

The dealer service tech thought it might be related to how long since I last filled my tank with gas, since gas can eventually go bad. It has only been 4 weeks since my last fill up, so that doesn't seem like the answer. But just in case, I added about 6 more gallons (filled it) to dilute the old gas with some new gas. That had no effect on this problem.

So, I am stuck with a hybrid that doesn't want to run in electric mode. I have a service appointment in a few weeks. Has anyone here had such a problem? Can anyone speculate on what is going wrong?

2018 Pacifica Hybrid Limited Molten Silver (12/2017 build)
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 07:44 PM
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Did you check the manual, and/or did the service tech? It's a normal thing that doesn't require a service visit. It's how the car tries to prevent old fuel or damp oil due to infrequent use from harming the engine. Unfortunately they combined the two into a single message, so you can't tell whether it's the fuel or the oil that's being refreshed, but if you filled up your tank and it didn't go away then it's probably due to the oil.

It's described like this in the 2019 manual:

Fuel And Oil Refresh Mode

Since it is possible to operate this vehicle for extended periods of time without running the gas engine, the fuel within the vehicle’s fuel tank can become stale or the engine oil’s lubricating properties can be reduced. To prevent engine and/or fuel system damage due to stale fuel, as well as, maintaining internal engine lubrication, this vehicle is equipped with a “Fuel and Oil Refresh Mode”.

The vehicle will automatically enter into the Fuel and Oil Refresh Mode to minimize potential for stale fuel, and to ensure lubrication of internal engine components. When operating in this mode, the gas engine will run to provide vehicle propulsion (electric only operation is inhibited). A message will be displayed in the instrument cluster whenever Fuel and Oil Refresh Mode is active. The vehicle will automatically exit the Fuel and Oil Refresh Mode when conditions have been satisfied. If the vehicle enters Fuel and Oil Refresh Mode, due to fuel which has been in the fuel tank for a long period of time (becoming stale fuel), the engine will run whenever the vehicle is operational (no electric only operation) until the low fuel level warning is activated. It is also possible to exit the Fuel and Oil Refresh Mode sooner by adding a minimum of 4 gallons of new fuel to the vehicle’s fuel tank. NOTE: If the vehicle enters Fuel and Oil Refresh Mode to maintain engine lubrication, adding fuel will not exit the mode sooner.

If the vehicle enters Fuel and Oil Refresh Mode to maintain engine lubrication properties, the engine may run for a period of up to 20 minutes when fully warm whenever the vehicle is operational (no electric only operation). If the vehicle is shut down before conditions to exit the refresh mode have been satisfied, the engine may run for additional time on subsequent trips. NOTE: Frequent short trips at low ambient temperature conditions are more likely to trigger the lubrication based mode.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 09:40 PM
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2019, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by stop-eject View Post
Just some additional data. I took a road trip yesterday (about six hours round-trip). Shortly before getting onto the highway when we were driving in town the FORM was initiated. The ICE stayed on for probably 45 minutes. I checked the oil temperature and it peaked at 181 degrees F. It stayed there for quite some time before the van finally exited FORM. Contrary to what the manual says, FORM is definitely not a gas-only mode. My HV battery went from about 94% all the way to zero *during* FORM. This behavior seems a little odd to me. Can anyone comment on why the HV battery might have been used during FORM?

(I realize that the manual doesn’t actually state that FORM is gas only. It only says that it’s *not* electric only.)

2018 Pacifica Hybrid Limited
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-20-2019, 06:59 PM
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That's what I've noticed during FORM. The engine is just zinging along at 1100 rpm, doing basically nothing except warming up the oil. This vehicle is great on the highway in hybrid (30mpg +) and it's great in town as an electric. Boy does it suck as a hybrid in town.

I'm going to try and stay out of FORM by preheating in the mornings with a 17kWh charger. As the cabin heat grid is in the battery cooling loop, it should warm up the battery as well and result in less engine operation during extremely cold weather.

That's my plan and I'm stickin to it.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-04-2019, 02:50 PM
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This works really well- the cabin heats up and while it does, the indicated electric range goes from 27 to 35 miles. (This is when temp is near freezing in the garage.)

It's obvious the battery is being warmed up to a better operating temperature as the ECH warms the battery coolant loop. I (almost) can't wait for next winter's sub zero temps to get more experience with this.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 10:22 AM
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There is a plethora of info on this forum regarding Fuel & Oil refresh mode. It is a fact of life with this vehicle and is normal.

I suggest doing some searching and some reading. It will keep coming back until the car has been satisfied that it is no longer needed.

2018 Pacifica Hybrid - In Canada Eh!
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