2010 Prius IPM Failure: Sell car or Hold On?? - POLL

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by silversport1, Feb 29, 2016.

?
  1. Keep the Car (until it died or has another problem)

    80.0%
  2. Sell the Car (get a newer Prius with Certified warranty + new car payment)

    10.0%
  3. Other: I'm open to suggestions (Thanks in advance)

    10.0%
  1. silversport1

    silversport1 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    8
    9
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    Dear friends,

    How are you? This is my first post so please bear with me. I am the proud owner of a 2010 Prius IV. I LOVE LOVE LOVE my car. I bought it brand used in 2012 with 60K miles. It has all the options I love and who can beat the fuel economy? I have almost never reached 50mpg in the car which was a little disappointing but coming from a car that averaged 18-23mpg the Prius was a game-changer in the savings and finance department. I have been bragging to all of my friends and family about how great the car has been on gas and how much money I keep in my pocket for other things. I average 45mpg in the summer and 35-40mpg in the winter.
    My love affair was rattled last week when I ran into trouble. I was about a mile away from home and heading back when I ran into a major issue. I was switching lanes and got in front of another vehicle. Just as soon as I did that the power to the vehicles engine completely cut out. The dashboard lit up like a Christmas tree, my heart skipped a few beats, the display read "Check Hybrid System" and I was a limp duck with now a car that was in my @$$ wondering why I got in front of them and slowed down. I coasted with the little momentum I had down the street and turned into a side-street.
    I tried hitting the power button but it cycled thru its options to turn the car on but to no avail. I still had electrical power but the car would not shift into drive. It gave me the option of park and neutral. I knew I was in bad shape. I called my insurance company for a tow, called my wife so she didn't freak out about where I was and why I wasn't home, and my best friend trying to pick his brain for a resolution. Unfortunately for me my car has 120,XXXmiles so I knew I would be paying out of my pocket for repairs. I just found out recently that California covers their hybrid systems until 150K but that doesn't do me too good in Michigan. My friend suggested I call my local mechanic to pick his brain. I was going to but I decided to call the local dealership first. The service guy on the phone said the usual that they have to see the car first to make a determination but according to him when it says "check hybrid system" it usually means the battery is bad and he gave me a rough estimate of $3500-$4500 to fix the car. I said I was having it towed in for a complete assessment of the problem. I then called my local mechanic that said he found batteries locally for approx. $1000-1500 and he could install it for $400. That was a little bit more re-assuring that I wouldn't have to take such a financial hit but it was by no means a cheap fix.
    2.5hours later the tow truck arrived. By that time my car would not give me the option to even shift into neutral and the lights were noticeably dimmer. The car had trouble even locking and unlocking doors. The tow truck driver had to put the car on 'skids' and dragged the front two tires to get it on the bed of the truck. I dropped off the car after hours. The dealership called me then next morning and said my car was blocking some loading zone they have even though it seemed to me to be in a nice open area that we just dropped off the night before. I went up to the dealership and they were mumbling and griping about where the tow truck driver had placed the car, especially since it was not able to shift into neutral and be moved elsewhere. One of the service guys opened up my hood and used a portable jump-pack to get enough power to move to neutral and take the car back. This was on a Saturday and they said their Master Hybrid Mechanic will be in on Monday to diagnose the car. I sweated my day away on Sunday.
    I received a call Monday afternoon regarding my fate. The service guy said it was an expensive fix. He said it would be around $3000 for the IPM module. Again my heart skipped a few beats but I knew it wasn't going to be cheap. He then followed up with saying the IPM is part of a recall and Toyota is paying for the repair 100%!!!!! I was like WHAT?!?!?!!!!! I felt like I won the lotto. I never thought they would cover anything after my warranty expired. As the conversation went on it jogged my memory. I said didn't I perform the software recall last year. He said yes it was completed at their dealership approx. 8 months ago. I inquired about why the IPM still failed even after I completed the recall. He said he didn't know and that it happens once in a while. I am still confused but I didn't want to rock the boat after they told me everything was covered.
    I was told it would take about 1 week for completing the repair and they actually finished in 4 days. I picked up my car and was dumbfounded that I got a bill for "no charge" on the failed IPM. The dealer said my battery was surprisingly ok. They said they "don't usually have any problems after this recall is fixed." As good of a non-guarantee guarantee as that was it wasn't reassuring. I had the utmost faith and confidence in this car but this incident has rattled me. I wanted to hold onto the car until it 'died' but I didn't expect an issue so soon after 100K. I know the longer I keep it the more I save but I am also on the fence about keeping it until another major event happens or do I sell it now they got it up and running and its actually worth something.
    I immediately drove from the Service dept. to Used Car Sales bldg. and decided to checl out what they have. I was disappointed to find only 2 Prius II's to pick from. They were 2013/2014 models with under 30K but it was hard for me to give up all of my prius IV options I had grown so accustomed to. They did give me a generous trade in of $9000 without any fight. I thought they would low ball me with $5000-8000. Another dealer did low ball me with $5000-$7500. I have rarely seen another car with the Solar option and Prius IV amenities of leather, heated seats, moonroof, navigation and backup camera.

    Has anyone else had this problem of replacing the IPM and if so howhas your car been after the fix:

    Does it run well?
    Have you had any further problems with the IPM / battery / hybrid system?
    How many trouble-free miles have you driven after the fix?

    OK LONG POST so please bear with me, I NEED FEEDBACK on what you guys would do...

    1. Keep the car - easiest option, also the most risky if it breaks down again
    2. Sell the Car - also easy but I get into a car payment I really don't want but does give me peace of mind to be back in warranty. I would get another used Prius that is Certified to 100K miles




    Thanks for bearing with me and for all of your help/feedback/suggestions!!!!!! Have a good day & Happy Prius(ing)!!
     
    m.wynn likes this.
  2. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2010
    40,087
    28,620
    80
    Location:
    Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    They fixed it, it cost you nothing? Just carry on, keep it. It will lead a charmed life from now on. :)
     
    Priifan, Shane Burns and sprtent like this.
  3. silversport1

    silversport1 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    8
    9
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    I'm really hoping so!!!

    Mendel Leisk did you ever have the same issue or know of anyone that had something similar happen? I just want to get an idea if the car runs relatively trouble free after the fix or if people still have issues after the fact.

    Truly I've never had any issues. Only a few times did I start the car and move it during the winter/cold and quickly turn it off. I would come back at a later time either that day or the day after and it would be shaking almost like it is mis-firing but I read that it was my fault for not letting the engine warm up properly. Once I realized my mistake I have taken heed to not let that happen again and properly warm up the engine even if its for small moves around the driveway.
     
  4. cproaudio

    cproaudio Speedlock Overrider

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2010
    2,397
    736
    0
    Location:
    CA
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    V
    If you ever visited the service department since the inverter was recalled a couple of years ago, they would have updated the software at no charge. You wouldn't have this problem to begin with. Since you got a new inverter, I'd say keep it. But then again, your battery warranty is set to run out soon so sell it.
     
  5. silversport1

    silversport1 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    8
    9
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    As I mentioned in my post the recall WAS PERFORMED approx. 8 months ago. I was surprised the part failed even though the recall was completed. The service guy said some cars IPM still fails even if the recall is completed as in my case. There is no rhyme or reason according to him.

    My battery warranty has ALREADY Expired at 100,000 miles, I am now approx. 121,000 miles in the ODO
     
  6. The Electric Me

    The Electric Me Go Speed Go!

    Joined:
    May 22, 2009
    9,083
    5,759
    0
    Location:
    Undisclosed Location
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    Model:
    N/A
    . As any machine ages there is never any guarantee of reliability.
    BUT...just because the IPM failed doesn't mean the vehicle is anywhere near a "must trade" in scenario.

    If you "LOVE, LOVE, LOVE" your Prius? There is really no valid reason born out of your experience to stop loving it.
     
  7. Redpoint5

    Redpoint5 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2013
    1,024
    498
    0
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    I imagine your battery will live a long full life up in Michigan. Keep the car. Even if some component were to fail, you might have to sink $1,500 into the car, but that is way cheaper than financing another vehicle and taking a hit on the trade-in.

    Listen to whatever the dealership says, and then do just the opposite. They aren't in the business of loosing money.

    BTW- The IPM is warrantied for 15 years from the sale date with unlimited mileage. Copy of the warranty details here, pulled from another Priuschat post.

    Thread to more discussion about IPM failures and the recall.
     
    #7 Redpoint5, Feb 29, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2016
  8. sprtent

    sprtent Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2012
    104
    75
    0
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Actually I would be even happier to keep the car now that one of my most worries of owning a Prius is fixed and paid for by Toyota. I would be confident the new IPM will last for at least another 121k. If I get a used 30k replacement now, how would I know its IPM won't go bad in 90k?

    Agreed. A IV (or later Four) with Solar is very difficult to part with.
     
    Lightning Racer likes this.
  9. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2010
    40,087
    28,620
    80
    Location:
    Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    Sorry, off-topic, but that, pretty much word-for-word, is how I've dealt with a few people over the years, lol.
     
  10. mmmodem

    mmmodem Taste Tester

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2011
    2,626
    1,578
    0
    Location:
    Milpitas, CA
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    Let's play a game of risks:

    Option 1:
    A: Nothing happens = no extra cost
    B: Battery fails. It will cost you $4500.

    Option 2: You trade in your 2010 for $9000. Assume the dealership can source you a CPO 2014 Four for what $18000? Let's say you take the trim Two with less options for $13500.

    A: Nothing happens. It will cost you $13500 - $9000 = $4500
    B: Battery fails but fully covered by warranty. Will cost you $13500 - $9000 = $4500.

    In other words, it may be a risk to keep your current car but there is no risk whatsoever with the newer car. It is guaranteed to cost you more money. And you'll lose the options you're accustomed to.

    To be blunt, the only peace of mind you will be buying is the dealer's peace of mind for their next boat payments.
     
    #10 mmmodem, Feb 29, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2016
    Priifan likes this.
  11. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2006
    10,857
    3,341
    1
    Location:
    Northern VA (NoVA)
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    I am a little lost where we stand, but another option might be to call Toyota USA for out-of-warranty assistance.
     
  12. Lightning Racer

    Lightning Racer Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2015
    231
    304
    1
    Location:
    Anchorage, Alaska
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    Model:
    N/A
    Exactly. I bought my Prius, same year and solar package as yours, last month at 151K miles knowing that the inverter had failed at 127K miles and that the IPM guts of the inverter was replaced. It's something that I WON'T have to worry about in the future, so that was sweet to see!

    Very similar to your car, the software update was done on my car at 124K miles, only 3,000 miles before the inverter fail (prior to my ownership). That should not be a surprise. The update lessens the stress on the inverter, but it still saw 124K miles or 98% of it's life at higher than ideal stress levels. So the inverter was near failure already when the software was updated. I would expect that the new inverter/IPM would get much better life, very likely lifetime of car, because it will be operating with the software update for 100% of its life. Not sure if there were improvements to the IPM in the replacement too...

    Since both our 2010 cars were covered under the 15 year/unlimited miles inverter warranty, they should still under that additional inverter warranty until 2025.
     
    #12 Lightning Racer, Feb 29, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2016
    Redpoint5 likes this.
  13. BZzap!

    BZzap! Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    1,508
    810
    0
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Just drive the snot out of it!
     
  14. silversport1

    silversport1 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    8
    9
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    Ok guys, I guess it's pretty unanimous!!!! I feel much more confident and educated on the IPM failure thanks to everyones input! I should've researched a bit more but I never knew about the 15 year unlimited mileage warranty for the IPM itself. That is very reassuring!!!

    I appreciate the risk breakdown analysis by modem, it seems vey logical to keep on keeping on with something that now should have a lengthy life.

    I didn't know what the software update was all about but after reading some of these posts I understand that the new IPM won't be stressed as much as the original that failed. I went back to the dealership yesterday and test drove a 100% loaded 2013 Avalon with every single bell and whistle. Although I have to admit the luxury element is there and I would be upgrading to a car with radar cruise control it STILL didn't drive and feel the way the Prius did and made me feel. The back seat was bigger but I lose out on on the functionality of trunk space. Just didn't make sense and isn't the right car for me at this point in my life. I'll take functionality over luxury and locking in a car payment these days. They were $24,000 firm along with my $9000 trade in to come out of pocket $15000 + tax and yada yada yada.

    I got back in my Prius and drove away. It feels great, no hiccups, picks up like I want, stops well, makes me smile, saves me money, makes me laugh at others that burn up their pocketbooks. People at work were like "sell that Jap [email protected]!" but I think I'll listen to my intuition and feedback from all of you guys! It makes sense to hold on and enjoy what I have instead of pay more to downgrade options or go over the top with options and budget as well. It has treated me this well so far and I have to give it and others in life a second chance at times. Fingers crossed for many more hiccup-free ECO miles with a smile on my face. I'll keep you posted if anything changes!!!

    THANKS AGAIN TO EVERYONE!!!!! Much appreciate your time and feedback!
     
    bwilson4web, m.wynn, Godzuki and 3 others like this.
  15. sprtent

    sprtent Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2012
    104
    75
    0
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Funny you mention checking out the Avalon. My coworker kept asking me to help him look for an Avalon Hybrid when his current 2005 Prius reaches 500k miles. He's looking for a bit more room and comfort features after the Prius.

    I remember mentioned in this forum before. He and I have a friendly bet that if his Prius get to 500k without any major problem, I will treat him to a "substantial" dinner. It is now at 416k. Still on original battery. The only thing he had to replace/fix, beside maintenance, was a new 12V battery and a water pump. Everything else is still good, and he's confident he can drive it for at least another 5 years. It's one of those bets I hope he wins.
     
  16. macman408

    macman408 Electron Guidance Counselor

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2010
    1,179
    358
    1
    Location:
    California
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    V
    The recall fixes a problem that could, over time, slowly damage some of the transistors in the inverter. Getting the recall prevented it from further damage, but enough had already been done that just normal use caused failure. That's why they have the repair program in addition to the recall - they can't guarantee that the damage hasn't already happened, so rather than replacing everything as a preventive measure, they wait for the small number that will actually fail to do so, and then repair them at no cost.

    I agree with everybody else; keep it until you have a different reason to find a new car.
     
    silversport1 and m.wynn like this.
  17. silversport1

    silversport1 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    8
    9
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    I really hope your friend reaches that goal as well!!!! What an amazing story, can't believe it has treated him so well on the original battery. For both of your sakes I hope he wins the bet!!! A fancy dinner is more than worthy for what the car has done over the years. I am so encouraged when I hear stories like this. I want to be one of them. I am just chalking this up as a fluke and am happy with the resolution from the dealership.

    As far as the Avalon goes..... I wish I could say I loved it. It was a sweet looking and feeling Avalon hybrid. It has all the bells and whistles and top notch touches. As I test drove it I wanted to have a bigger smile on my face. I just didn't. It's going to sound weird but I felt like I was cheating on my Prius. Not giving her a fair shot at giving me plenty of eco-friendly money saving miles ahead. The Avalon drove nicely, but I swear I like the way the Prius feels better. It is just a well balanced car. It has just the right amount of power and balance that I have been looking for. I test drove the CT200 and could not have been more disappointed. I drove it years ago when it first came out and have been disappointed since day 1. It looks and feels fancy again but the Prius just rides better. I don't care what others say about the Lexus and Avalon being better sound dampened and having better suspension. It still doesn't equate to a well balanced ride in my opinion. The Prius just has it going on. Its light, peppy, fun to drive, well balanced, a money saver, and full utility vehicle with the back hatch. The CT200 trunk is tiny and less practical, the Avalon has the standard trunk with even less functional usable space. All of these factors push me back to what I kinda knew all along. If you are happy with something then there's no reason to rush to get rid of it. Especially in this case when the car has been revived and functioning well. The only feature I really liked and missed from the Avalon was the Pre-Collision System with radar cruise control. Kind of a cool feature as far as practicality and safety but by no means a make or break for me. I know the Prius Five has this and may upgrade to that model one day but its not worth giving my car up at this stage of the game. She has been good to me overall and I have to give her the benefit of the doubt for many more carefree miles to come

    I have always been a BIG fan of Hondas and Toyotas. Neither one has ever let me down in any major way. I have an IS300 with 199K miles and again the engine is running strong. I would venture to say 90-95% as efficient and fun as when I bought it brand new. I have dreams of hitting the magical 250K club and beyond but I guess one mile at a time lol

    **Sidenote: As I make right hand turns I am hearing some type of rub. I am guessing that when the tow truck driver was raising and lowering
    the car and had it on "skids" (since I was not able to put the car in neutral at the time of the original hybrid system failure) that something might have been possibly damaged . I'm hoping its minor. So far the car drives just as well as it did pre-failure with the exception of what I just mentioned above. I'll keep u guys posted
     
    sprtent and Redpoint5 like this.
  18. silversport1

    silversport1 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    8
    9
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    Thank you for your explanation, it makes perfect sense. I am hoping that the inverter repair and replacement will help to give new life to my car for many years to come. I thought I was done for when everything went south on me on that fateful day. Because I performed the recall already I thought I solved the problem. After the failure I thought Toyota wasn't liable since the recall was already completed. It was a pleasant surprise when they covered it and I found out thru this forum that the part is covered for 15 years and unlimited miles. Gives me much more peace of mind.

    And I agree with you and others, my Prius isn't going anywhere expect my own garage!
     
  19. Redpoint5

    Redpoint5 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2013
    1,024
    498
    0
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    The first car I owned was a 1996 Subaru Legacy. I bought it used and drove it until about 220,000 miles were on the odometer. Considering how frequently I took the thing off-road at the time, I figured I would like a newer Outback with more ground clearance. I bought a used 2007 Outback fully loaded with features such as power windows and heated seats. It was nice, but I missed the way the Legacy handled, and it got much better fuel economy. The automatic transmission made the car sluggish and not fun to drive. A month later, I sold the Outback for a $1000 profit, and went back to driving the Legacy.

    I'd probably still be driving the Legacy if it hadn't been rear-ended and totaled.

    I don't really have a point except I get attached to a vehicle when it really fulfills my needs, and I keep it so long that I have a lot of memories of adventures in it. I suppose every vehicle has a limited useful life, and our needs change with time, but I certainly feel no need to perpetually maintain a car payment by swapping vehicles every 3 years.

    The Prius is a wonderful vehicle, and I like it just as much as the Legacy. It fulfills my desires for the stage of life I'm in now.
     
    silversport1 likes this.
  20. silversport1

    silversport1 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    8
    9
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV

    Excellent points and dually noted! You really couldn't have said it any better. I've had my Lexus since I was 22 and it has been with me for the last 13 years. Its just a tank. It goes and goes and then goes some more. I have lots of memories throughout the years of various road trips and memories so I COMPLETELY understand where you are coming from and what you are talking about. The idea of a new car seems appealing but just for the fact that it's something new. That alone is no reason for me to plunge into a 'perpetual' car payment as you say. I would rather enjoy the vehicle than stress about working just to have and maintain a vehicle. My only problem with the Lexus is the 18mpg that it gets. Back in the day that was totally acceptable. Nowadays the Lexus is a backup (and came in handy during my breakdown) and the primary is a 40mpg car that hums and zips along. Sorry to hear that your car was rear-ended, that suxxx. But again at least you have some good memories of the past that you can still hold onto. I remember each car I have ever owned very vividly. I enjoyed naming them and driving them.

    I'm just happy the Prius "fulfills my desires for the stage of life I'm in now [and beyond (for now!)]!!!
     
Loading...