2002 on last legs: keep or junk it?

Discussion in 'Generation 1 Prius Discussion' started by nugie, May 20, 2016.

  1. nugie

    nugie Junior Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2012
    5
    0
    0
    Location:
    Topeka, KS
    Vehicle:
    2002 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Our 2002 has brake issues that have deterred me from using it. I have to press the pedal VERY hard to stop, but it does stop. This followed a long period when the ABS light and the annoying under-dash warning sound would come on. During this period I would have varying stages with power brakes, and mostly without. But they worked OK. Now I think the brake fluid pressure pump has completely failed, as there is no power assist at all, and the infuriating noise is on all the time. To fix all this is an expensive and laborious repair, with the parts also prohibitively expensive. Also there is a loud muffler noise and as close as was determined (the estimate I sought was never finalized) the whole part of the muffler system integral with the expensive catalytic converter would have to be replaced. This car has 178,000 mi on it. About three years back for $1000 I had the fuel injectors replaced, but now the engine light is on with the same error message (cylinder misfire) that I was getting before they were replaced and the mileage is poorer than you'd expect. My main question is: is this car safe to drive for occasional use? We live about a block from a supermarket and if I could determine if it was safe enough I'd re-insure (if I can-I told them the brakes went out) and buy the license tag ($100) just to have a vehicle to obtain groceries with. We are retired seniors and can't afford another car and obviously I couldn't sell this one for enough to help much in that regard.
     
  2. sttkailua

    sttkailua Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2016
    190
    150
    0
    Location:
    Hawaii
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    I vote to junk it.
    You got good use and it served you well.
    Of course money would be an issue. You have to
    Decide to put money in repairs, or payments in another car.
    My 2013 was bought used.
    I enjoy driving it. Fun car to drive around town.
    Plastic parts tend to crack and break after around 10 years.
    Good luck!
    stt
     
  3. MDNHW11

    MDNHW11 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2015
    50
    24
    0
    Location:
    Canada
    Vehicle:
    2001 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    It is not safe to drive. I suggest letting it go.
     
  4. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2008
    18,181
    6,288
    0
    Location:
    Green Valley, AZ
    Vehicle:
    2015 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Your car has several issues due to lack of needed repairs and is not safe to drive in its current condition. You apparently do not wish to fund the repairs, so it would be best to let the car go.

    It might be possible to repair the brake system using used parts, to reduce the cost of that repair activity.

    When was the last time the iridium spark plugs were replaced? That might be causing the misfire issues.

    The exhaust system is expensive to repair due to the hydrocarbon absorption chamber which is unique to Classic Prius. If the catalytic converter is at fault, a universal cc could be installed for a few hundred dollars.
     
    jahman likes this.
  5. greasemonkey007

    greasemonkey007 Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2013
    284
    101
    0
    Location:
    South Central Arkansas
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    I agree with Patrick. I recently had the brake pump replaced with a used one from my parts car and it worked great. You would save money by having an independent shop replace it rather than a dealer, who won't install a used part anyway.
     
  6. DonDNH

    DonDNH Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    1,711
    652
    0
    Location:
    Nashua, NH
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Four Touring
    If your car's brakes aren't working properly, you'd never get past an inspection.
     
  7. James_S

    James_S Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2014
    11
    2
    0
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Vehicle:
    2001 Prius
    Model:
    I
    Rather than junking it, how about selling it as a mechanic special? All of the problems you list sound like things a reasonably competent DIY mechanic could fix. If the body is good someone could give it a second life.
     
  8. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    15,217
    10,585
    0
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    I agree that it sounds like a car on its last legs for you. It might be of interest to somebody else, but by now that would have to be someone ready to catch up on all these unrepaired issues.

    For any future readers of this thread, there is indeed a high-pitched buzzer under the dash for the brake system, and it is only programmed to go off when the most serious of brake problems are detected, and it's not there to annoy you while you keep driving the car; it's there so you stop driving the car, and get the safety issue fixed.

    -Chap
     
Loading...