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Brake actuator failure (again!) - 2008

Discussion in 'Gen II Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by CindeeP, Oct 17, 2009.

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  1. CindeeP

    CindeeP New Member

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    Location:
    Media, PA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Am a new member here. Have read some of the posts here and in other Prius newsgroups regarding brake actuator issues.

    I bought my 2008 Prius new (29 miles) in May 2008. By Oct. 2008, was hearing the chirping noise and had it checked out when car was in for service in Nov. 2008. It resulted in them keeping the car for 2-1/2 weeks while they found that it was the actuator, ordered the part, replaced it, and found that that regulator had also failed, ordered it, replaced it.

    Same noise appeared intermittently again starting in Aug. 2009. Called dealer earlier this week and set appointment to bring it in today. After 2 hours, service writer tells me he couldn't hear the noise nor could the tech. I took him on a test drive and noise happened 8 times before we even left the parking lot. After another 1-1/2 hours, he let me know they've determined it is the actuator and will have to order the actuator assembly (of course, I had reminded them of last year's actuator and regulator repairs upon bringing in the car). I'm obviously pushing them to try to understand why parts of the ABS have now failed twice in the first 1-1/2 years / 22,900 miles. He has no explanation, just shrugged and continued to imply that my car must have been in an accident (it has not) since these parts "just don't fail".

    Obviously, the actuator seems to be a somewhat known problem, at least in years prior to 2008 model. Has anyone else experienced or known of repeated failure of this part? Is there anything else I should ensure they check... really want to get to the root cause, not just keep swapping out a part. I have opened a case with Toyota and am hoping someone will take ownership of repeated failures of ABS parts.

    Oh well, now I wait until they get the part in. One last question-- is the car safe to drive while waiting for this repair???

    Thanks in advance,
    Cindee
    1 person likes this.
  2. firepa63

    firepa63 Former Prius Owner

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  3. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    I have not heard of any safety issues related to the chirping sound, so unless the dealer tells you otherwise, it should be safe to drive. While it is a known problem, it's not a common problem - sounds like you had a run of bad luck.

    Tom
  4. jdenenberg

    jdenenberg EE Professor

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    The brake actuator may not be the problem. The "Chirp" is caused by air bubbles in the hydraulic lines that make the noise passing through small orifices in the actuator. If the dealer did not bleed the system properly when working on it last time, the problem will reoccur.

    JeffD
  5. CindeeP

    CindeeP New Member

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    Thanks all-- I did go ahead and file a report at the NHTSA / ODI site. And, will ask the dealership whether they bled the system last time.
  6. acacia987

    acacia987 Junior Member

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    I have the same chirping issue when the car is stopped and my foot is pressing the break down. I brought this up to the dealer and they claimed they could not replicate the problem. all i had to do is sit in the car and push down the brake to get it to happen. I talked with the tech at length that there is a TSB for earlier models with this same noise. He agreed that the problem was most likely the actuator but he would have to go through the check list of causes since there was not a TSB for the 2008 yet. I told him i would bring it back on sat for them to have it all day. needless to say when i picked it up on sat they said the only noise they could hear was the poping of the left front brake pad slipping, and that was normal (which doesn't sound normal or safe in the slightest). needless to say the tech i talked to the day before was not working and never communicated the problem he heard with anyone.

    as far as i know its safe to drive (according to prior TSB). i plan to take it to another dealer.
  7. EZW1

    EZW1 Active Member

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    This is your third part. 3 identical failures often qualifies under the lemon law. Winning that battle is a bit of an uphill climb, but doable. Most likely your problem is air in the system.
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