Most Common Toyota Prius Problems

When you think of a hybrid car, your first thought might be the Toyota Prius. That’s because they’re one of the most popular hybrid vehicles and have been for quite some time. The Prius comes in a variety of hybrid options, including the Prius Prime, which is a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV).

If you’re in the market for a new or used Prius, it’s important to know some of the commonly reported issues with the Prius. That way, you know what to look out for with your new or used car. Read on to learn more about some of the most commonly reported Toyota Prius problems.

Oil Leaks

One of the most common Prius issues that drivers report experiencing is excessive oil consumption. This is most often due to leaks that are caused by a faulty timing cover gasket. In some cases, simply replacing the gasket resolves the issue. In other cases, Prius drivers had to replace their engine because of this issue.

This issue is most often reported for 2010 and 2011 models, so if you’re considering buying a newer model, you likely will not have to deal with this issue. It’s important to note that different models tend to have different associated issues, so we will be sure to address the noted Prius problems by year so you can better understand if the issue applies to your current (or potential future) vehicle.

Windshield Cracks

The 2016 Toyota Prius has been known to have a windshield that cracks easily. Some drivers have even reported having to replace or repair their windshield multiple times. While this may seem like a minor issue, it’s important to remember that being able to see clearly out of your windshield is essential in order to keep you and others on the road safe. If your windshield does have a crack, regardless of the size, it’s always a good idea to get it checked out and likely replaced.

Faulty Brakes Recall

Another item on the list of common Prius problems is related to the vehicle’s brakes. In 2016, Toyota actually issued a recall of over 300,000 2016 and 2017 Prius vehicles due to an issue with the brakes, with about 94,000 of those vehicles being in the U.S. 

According to Toyota, “On the involved vehicles, there is a possibility that the parking brake could become inoperative.  If this occurs and the driver exits the vehicle with the transmission in a gear other than ‘Park’ while the ignition is on, the vehicle could roll away, increasing the risk of a crash.”

If you are considering purchasing a used 2016 or 2017 Prius, be sure to check if your vehicle was a part of the recall. If it was, you’ll need to check that the vehicle received the necessary updates to ensure the parking brake is fully functioning.

Fuel Gauge

This Toyota Prius problem is a seemingly minor issue that could lead to a major concern. Some drivers have reported that the fuel gauge does not give an accurate reading. This seems to affect a wider range of models, starting at 2001 and ending at the 2015 model.

So why is this issue concerning? If your vehicle runs out of fuel because your gauge tells you that there is more left than there actually is, it may leave you stranded in a compromising position. This leaves you at a greater risk of being involved in an accident. Luckily, this issue can be resolved with a calibration or a small part replacement.

Acceleration Issue

Another common concern is related to the Toyota Prius acceleration problems. Drivers have reported that early Prius models (2004-2009) were included in the random acceleration issue that affected a variety of different Toyota vehicles. Toyota believed that the issue was related to stuck gas pedals and misplaced floor mats. 

After reading through this list of common Toyota Prius problems, you now know what to look for when shopping for a used Prius. Or, if you already own a Toyota Prius and have experienced any of the above issues, bring your vehicle in and we can diagnose the problem. We can get you back on the road in no time!