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tail light replacement - aftermarket or OEM?

Discussion in 'Gen III 2010+ Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubles' started by mariecee, Jun 23, 2012.

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  1. mariecee

    mariecee New Member

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    Your Vehicle Year:
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    I just cracked my rear passenger tail light. After watching some you tube videos I think I can replace it on my own.

    Now I am debating between purchasing the tail light assembly form a number of different sellers.

    Should I go with the OEM part or is it ok to buy an aftermarket part for this type of thing?
    How much of a quality difference can there be between different tail lights?

    Here are some sample prices -

    OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) - genuine part from Toyota
    Toyota dealer = $354
    Toyota Parts Overstock =$266.34
    (
    LENS & BODY, REAR COMBINATION LAMP, RH. REAR COMBINATION LAMP for TOYOTA PRIUS (2010, 2011) (8155147111)
    )

    Aftermarket (a generic part not manufactured by Toyota)
    Ebay seller carpartswholesale = $179.85
    (New Tail Light Passenger Side Clear red lens Prius TO2819146 8155147111 | eBay)
    Ebay seller americanmotorparts = $155.75
    (Passenger Replacement Tail Light 10-11 Toyota Prius 4DR Hatchback 8155147111 | eBay)

    carpartswholesale said that the part doesn't come with bulbs or a wire harness, and in the videos I saw, that was included. So I don't have complete instructions on how to take the wire harness out of the broken part and use it in the new part.
  2. BSWEET

    BSWEET New Member

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    If it was me, I would take this opertunity to switch to full LED taillights. You can buy a pair of them for under $300.00.
  3. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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  4. stream

    stream Senior Member

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    My concern with an aftermarket replacement part is how well it will match the other tail light. Have you tried rockauto.com? They were the cheapest when I bought engine air and cabin air filters.
  5. yeldogt

    yeldogt Member

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    First thing: If you go with a genunine Toyota part do some aditional pricing to see what the part actually costs wholesale online and use that price as a starting point. It looks like that $266 price is for an OE part.

    Many of the aftermarket lenses are for people wanting something different -- they don't look the same. Make sure if you order one it will match the OE lens exactly.

    I have used aftermarket replacement lens assemblies in the past without any issues -- but they were simple asemblies ... not as complex as the Prius tail lamp
  6. Salvage09

    Salvage09 Junior Member

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    The official Toyota taillight replacement instructions have an additional step that may not be evident:
    1. DISCONNECT CABLE FROM NEGATIVE BATTERY
    TERMINAL
    CAUTION:
    Wait at least 90 seconds after disconnecting the
    cable from the negative (-) battery terminal to
    prevent airbag and seat belt pretensioner activation.

    Obviously, this doesn't happen every time, but just the possibility that it COULD should be enough to take the precaution!
    La documentazione del selidori

    FWIW, the tail light assembly is available on EBay for about $75
    New Tail Light Assembly for Passenger Side | eBay

    These seem to come with bulbs and sockets. If you replace with LEDs be sure to buy red/yellow etc, if you want that color. A white LED with a colored filter will be very dim. Turn signals either need a different relay or parallel resistors to keep the blink rate right.
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