1. Offline

    GF28 New Member

    Member Since:
    Jul 12, 2009
    Posts:
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    Location:
    Southeast
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2002 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Folks -- I have a 2002 Prius with 55,800 miles on it. It's had no real problems since I bought it in Dec 2001, besides the usual replacement of tires and one steering-related problem in '06 that was covered by a Toyota technical bulletin and cost me nothing to fix.

    I'd like some advice and insight on a recent, serious problem that came out of nowhere.

    Last Tuesday, I started the car and a loud buzzer went off and the Brake light appeared. I turned the car off and checked the manual. It said call the dealer. I restarted the car and the problem didn't occur and I went about my business. The problem happened 2 more times so I went to the dealer on Friday. They examined the car and reported that the Brake Actuator needs to be replaced because it's leaking fluid. To my utter shock, they told me it would cost $1880 to fix:

    • $1180.95 for part: 47071-47010 "Pump Sub"
    • $679.49 for labor
    • $20 for fluid
    • $1880.44 total
    Wow. From doing some searches, I found references that said replacing this part is expensive. It appears that I have the same problem as "lovenrockets", which was posted a few months ago here: "2001 ABS/Brake Alarm & Light" (It's not letting me include the URL)

    However, the post didn't say much about the actual problem beside that it was expensive and that he went ahead and fixed it. (Or maybe I missed it.)

    My car's 8 year hybrid warranty will be up this Dec '09 (I bought in Dec '01). Like many on this forum, I love my Gen1 Prius. But I'm starting to wonder if this is a sign that it's time to move on. The repair guy said this is a specialized part, it's not under the hybrid warranty (my regular 3 yr/ 36000 is long over), and there's no technical bulletin, so they can't get Toyota to pay for it.

    I'd love some advice from folks about how to approach this problem. Do we know how Gen 1 Priuses are holding up? My car has relatively low mileage (55,800) so I'd assume I could have more happy years ahead with my car. (This is one reason we all buy Toyotas, right?) But an 8 year car is getting up in age and as other specialized Gen1 Prius parts start to break down, am I looking at other really expensive repairs in the future? Is paying $1880 only a few months before I'm out of my 8 year hybrid warranty makes sense on a Gen1 Prius? If the battery happens to go, I heard that can be extremely expensive to fix. I know none of us can predict the future, but I'd appreciate hearing advice from people who know Priuses and perhaps know about the problem I hit. As much as I'd like to avoid it, I wonder if I should trade it in and move on to something newer.

    Thoughts? Suggestions? Questions I should ask myself or my dealer (who has always treated me well, the few times I've been there)?

    Thanks!
  2. Offline

    ea8631 Member

    Member Since:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Posts:
    142
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    20
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2001 Prius
    Ask your dealer can you provide your own part since you can pruchase the parts thru internet nowadays and I got a quote for $790 for your parts.

    About the brake actuator, I was just wondering did your dealer told you where is the oil leak from, is it leak from the actuator body (crack on the actuator body) or from the connection between the brake line to the actuator? If the oil is leak from the body, then you need to replace for sure. It if leak from the connection between the brake line and actuator, maybe a cheap fix (ie: replace a gasket if there is one) can solve problem? (i'm not a mechanic, just throwing idea out).

    For the idea of keeping your car or not, it's all depends on did you love your car or not and there are alot of consideration involved. I did stuck in ther situation like you back in 06 since my main (traction) battery was dead and my warrenties was out. At last I did go ahead and replaced the battery since it will be way cheaper to buy a new car. As for the newer used car, you really have no idea how the previous owner treat that car so for me I will try to avoid them (unless they have a detail maintance record for that car).

    Since yours only have 56000 miles so I don't think anything need to be worry (assume you done all the regular maintance) except the battery since your car is getting old. With my prius approaching 200000 miles (196800 miles as of today) I did repair the following wear and tear item:

    front shocks absorbers with new springs (1 set)
    all four wheel bearing (1 set)
    tires (3 sets for summer and 1 set for winter)
    brake pad (2 set for front and 1 set for rear)
    12V battery (1 time)

    non wear and tear item:
    steering rack
    traction battery
    inverter (too expensive for a new one, pruchase a used instead)
    battery cooling fan
    fog lights (stone chip break the lens)
    passenger side glass (got broke in)

    hope that will help you.
  3. Offline

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

    Member Since:
    Mar 8, 2008
    Posts:
    12,434
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    Location:
    Green Valley, AZ
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    The price that you were quoted seems reasonable to solve the problem. I also suggest that you take a look at the part to see that the body itself is leaking, and that it is not just an issue with a loose fitting.

    I suggest you call around to see if other dealers in your area will quote a lower labor rate. I'd be surprised if a Toyota dealer's service dept will allow you to furnish your own part; that is like bringing your uncooked steak to a restaurant and asking the chef to grill it.

    If you have to depend upon dealer service post-warranty, you've already received one indication that this can be quite costly. Your car is low-mileage and should provide more years of reliable service; however if you are unlucky and have a problem with the inverter, battery, transaxle, etc then you will pay very big $$$$.

    Good luck with your decision.
  4. Offline

    jhknight Junior Member

    Member Since:
    Oct 15, 2011
    Posts:
    75
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    south central Minnesota
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2002 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Sticky situation. At 120,000 miles my 2002 Prius has been diagnosed and estimated $2018.34 to fix!!!!!!!! Since we also have to drive 90 miles (round trip) out of our way for service this is getting real old. BUT it would be awfully hard to give up 46mpg when there seems to be no end to oil company GREED, gas keeps going UP. Now it's 2 grand to fix it! I want a new Prius but it would be the same 90 mile trip for service every time something goes wrong. Waiting for Ford's new C-Max hybrid, maybe, but how can one justify almost 30 grand just to get to work, a place I don't want to be in the first place??
  5. Offline

    jhknight Junior Member

    Member Since:
    Oct 15, 2011
    Posts:
    75
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    south central Minnesota
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2002 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    $2000 is reasonable? I didnt' buy a Prius to be "green" , I bought it to save money!

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