Welcome to PriusChat

We'd love to have you join our community and participate in the conversation! Sign up for FREE today.

Sign Up

Headlight low beams

Discussion in 'Prius c Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Jasonbpriusc, May 22, 2012.

Social Buttons

  1. Jasonbpriusc

    Jasonbpriusc New Member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2012
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    PA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Three
    I just purchased a Prius C three and have about 80 miles on it. I drove at night last night and the low beams seem to extend in front of the car about 4-5 car lengths and then there is a line and darkness above. I am use to the low beams in a car being brighter in front of the car and progressively getting dimmer the farther away the light gets from the car. I feel like I am over driving the headlights and am at or below the speed limit. The high beams light up the planet but these low beams are going to be a major source of anxiety for me while driving at night. I felt like I was going to hit a Deer around every corner, or worse someone or something stopped on the road. 1. Has anyone experiences this problem? 2. is there a way to adjust the low beams "up".

    I talked with the dealership and they said there is something in the real axle that levels the headlights with passengers in the back but I was driving solo.
    Thanks
    Jason
  2. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2006
    Messages:
    18,713
    Likes Received:
    3,751
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA.
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2013 Chevy Volt
    Model:
    N/A
    You have projector style headlights. All projector headlights have a sharp cutoff on the upper portion of the beam to reduce the likelihood of blinding oncoming drivers. Projectors concentrate the beam so it is much brighter than regular reflector style headlights. The cutoff is something you just have to get used to.

    If you feel your headlights are aimed too low then I would suggest going to the dealer and having them adjust them to the proper legal height or you can do it yourself but I will warn you it requires a tape measure, level ground and a dark area with a nice straight wall that you can park 25' away from. Other than that it is easy to do. lol
  3. Jasonbpriusc

    Jasonbpriusc New Member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2012
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    PA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Three
    The dealership said they would look it over for me. I asked if there was Up and Down adjustment and they said no, only right to left. If there is up and down adjustment ill look into that before I take it into the dealer for that waste of time.
    Thanks
  4. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2006
    Messages:
    18,713
    Likes Received:
    3,751
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA.
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2013 Chevy Volt
    Model:
    N/A


    That doesn't make sense. All headlight system require an up and down adjustment to ensure they remain DOT legal. :confused: that is much more important than left or right adjustment. All the other Prius models have this adjustment.

    I'll look into it for you. I have instructions for how to adjust them to the legal height somewhere on this forum. :)
  5. 2012CamryHybrid

    2012CamryHybrid New Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Marietta, GA USA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    Other Hybrid
    Model:
    N/A


    On the HyCam with premium Nav there are a ton of user settings. One of these adjusts the headlights up/down to compensate for the passenger distribution and weight.

    I bet if you have the Toyota premium Nav option you will find these settings in your Prius too.
  6. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2006
    Messages:
    18,713
    Likes Received:
    3,751
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA.
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2013 Chevy Volt
    Model:
    N/A
    The OP is having trouble with his permanent setting not an auto leveling issue. Auto leveling headlights is not an option on the c.
  7. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible Chance favors the prepared mind.

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2008
    Messages:
    894
    Likes Received:
    452
    Location:
    Neb
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Four
    I couldn't be happier with my headlights. They're tons better than the car being replaced, and rival the best headlights I've ever had ('88 Chevy truck.)

    Maybe it's just something you'll have to get used to...
  8. crebble

    crebble Member

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2012
    Messages:
    176
    Likes Received:
    44
    Location:
    Shohola PA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    Model:
    N/A
    I did not like the stock H11 headlights. They were way too dim for me. I went with a HID solution. There are some threads about them in the modifications forum.
    bgil likes this.
  9. dig4dirt

    dig4dirt MoonGlow

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2012
    Messages:
    230
    Likes Received:
    22
    Location:
    Lancaster Co PA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2014 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    It may be something you need to get used to, but I would get them checked out anyway.
    You or the dealer.

    In my C I am very happy with the low and high beams, however funny thing is,
    it is the Prius 3G that I was driving tonight and thought that the low beams didnt
    extend enough for driving.

    I am sure I just have to get used to them.

    Good Luck, you always want to be safe, including keeping other eyes safe.
  10. dellrio

    dellrio Im pretty much awesome

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Messages:
    282
    Likes Received:
    84
    Location:
    Des Moines, IA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Three
    The stock bulbs are worthless in the Projectors - you can get a cheap H11 HID conversion kit on ebay for about $40 or less and that will improve night driving visibility a ton. Install is very straight forward - I have had aftermarket HID in my last 4 vehicles - will never go back to halogen. I literally installed my HID's when I got home from the dealership - 12 miles on the car.

    Also from my past experiences - The first HID kit I bought - i opted for the $200 kit, they claimed that the cheap kits were dangerous for your wiring and caused electrical issues. My expensive "safe" kit lasted about 1 year, I replaced it with a cheapo ebay kit and i have had it for 3 years (moved it from the 2010 prius to the 2012C). Have had no issues and works great.
  11. XRinger

    XRinger Member

    Joined:
    May 8, 2012
    Messages:
    150
    Likes Received:
    31
    Location:
    Woburn, MA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    We took out the new 'c' the other night (first time using the lights) and I noticed the 'terminator' line,
    and figured that on-coming cars would be able to see better.

    I also noticed there was a nice wide spreading sideways effect too. Not just a bright area out front.
    I think that's really going to be nice in the city, allowing me to see bicycles & pedestrians coming out of side streets and driveways etc.
    Even wildlife on some of these slow twisty back roads in the woody areas around town, will be safer,
    when I come slipping up on them in EV mode.. :D
  12. ewaboy

    ewaboy Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2012
    Messages:
    669
    Likes Received:
    187
    Location:
    Hawaii
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    I find the headlights much better than my old Prizm lights. Just drove the Prizm last night and felt like I had no lights on. That said: Wife's 2007 Fit has the nicest lights (production) I've ever seen. Exactly as XRinger describes - throws a nice wide beam that lights up to the side too. Really makes driving at night a lot easier. The C is just about as nice as the Fit.
  13. Jillith

    Jillith Junior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    IV
    I was a little anxious with low beam black 'hood' line limiting the height/distance of light. It takes a little while to adjust. I find the low beams more than adequate with other cars on the road with me (in front or on-coming). When I'm solo, I use my high beams which 'light up the sky'. They are very powerful.
  14. WD0AFQ

    WD0AFQ Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2012
    Messages:
    619
    Likes Received:
    148
    Location:
    Dexter, Mo.
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    I also noticed that the low beams do not show far enough down the road for me. I will see if I can adjust them up just a little. As stated, the high beams are great.
    Dan
  15. WD0AFQ

    WD0AFQ Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2012
    Messages:
    619
    Likes Received:
    148
    Location:
    Dexter, Mo.
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    Well, I finally got all I could stand of the short cutoff on the dims. Went out last week and adjusted them up. Took 3 tries to get them where I wanted. No cutoff line to be seen now, 100 ft. down the road, unless I hit a dip or short climb. Don't know why mine were adjusted so short. Guess they thought a fat couple would be in the back seat to lower the rear and raise the front. Our lights were dangerous on dim. Just no way to keep from over driving them if running over 20 mph. I have noticed a very wide path on these things. I guess that is good.
    Dan
    CMJAnew likes this.
  16. XRinger

    XRinger Member

    Joined:
    May 8, 2012
    Messages:
    150
    Likes Received:
    31
    Location:
    Woburn, MA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    How do you adjust them? What type of tool do you need? I have not had to tweak headlights since I owned a 73 Pontiac Le-mans. :confused:
  17. WD0AFQ

    WD0AFQ Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2012
    Messages:
    619
    Likes Received:
    148
    Location:
    Dexter, Mo.
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    I think it was an 8 mm socket I used. You can see the screw head right behind the dim headlight when you raise the hood and look down there.
    Dan
  18. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible Chance favors the prepared mind.

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2008
    Messages:
    894
    Likes Received:
    452
    Location:
    Neb
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Four
    I used a 5/32 socket on mine while ago. It's tight, but a short handle drive will fit. It's a left turn to raise (think lefty-loosey).

    I raised one inch at ten feet. We'll see how that works.
  19. XRinger

    XRinger Member

    Joined:
    May 8, 2012
    Messages:
    150
    Likes Received:
    31
    Location:
    Woburn, MA
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    5/32 is about 4mm.. So, I'll have to use a 4 or 8 mm socket.. :)
    We have to pass inspection every year, so I don't want to put the Low-Beams over the limit. Whatever that is in this state (MA)..
  20. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible Chance favors the prepared mind.

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2008
    Messages:
    894
    Likes Received:
    452
    Location:
    Neb
    Your Vehicle Year:
    2012 Prius c
    Model:
    Four
    Definitely not 8 mm.
Similar Threads: Headlight beams
Forum Title Date
Gen II Prius Audio and Electronics Headlights - Hi/low Beams - Are they different bulbs? Sep 17, 2007
Gen III 2010+ Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubles Headlights are dim in Prius. Tuesday at 7:00 AM
Gen III 2010+ Prius Accessories and Modifications headlight question Oct 13, 2014
Gen III 2010+ Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubles Headlights go on immediately when starting car Oct 12, 2014
Gen II Prius Accessories & Modifications Custom Headlights + Projector Retrofit Oct 7, 2014