2011 Prius Headlight Condensation

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by BayAreaPrius11, Dec 7, 2011.

  1. BayAreaPrius11

    BayAreaPrius11 New Member

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    Just purchased a 2011 prius 2 on sunday and took it in yesterday because I had a significant amount of condensation on the inside of both headlight lenses. Toyota dealership acted like it was the first time they had seen this and the service manager said they would talk to "tech systems" and get back to me. They called today to tell me that this is normal on the 2011 because the headlamps are not a sealed unit.

    I thought it was a little odd that the service department had not encountered this before as the 2011's have been out almost the whole year.

    My wife has the car right now so I can't check to see for sure when the car was manufactured but I think I remember the dealer saying it was October.

    Does this sound correct?
    Can I expect headlight haze very soon?
    Any other thoughts on this?
     
  2. DonDNH

    DonDNH Senior Member

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    The dealer should first dry out the headlight and then make certain that the rubber seals around the bulbs are secure so they will not leak in any more moisture.

    I had this problem on my '04 and discovered that 1 of the seals was not in place. I used a hair dryer and a length of flexible tubing to blow warm air into the interior to dry it out.
     
  3. BayAreaPrius11

    BayAreaPrius11 New Member

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    they are saying its not supposed to be sealed like older years were.
     
  4. Judgeless

    Judgeless Senior Member

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    I have a 2010 in Cleveland. We get alot of hot days, cold days, rainy days and snowy days. I have 72,000 miles on the car now and never had that issue once.
     
  5. BayAreaPrius11

    BayAreaPrius11 New Member

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    If its not broken dont fix it. I can't understand why they would go to an unsealed headlamp housing.
     
  6. BayAreaPrius11

    BayAreaPrius11 New Member

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    Two
    Just purchased a 2011 prius 2 on sunday and took it in yesterday because I had a significant amount of condensation on the inside of both headlight lenses. Toyota dealership acted like it was the first time they had seen this and the service manager said they would talk to "tech systems" and get back to me. They called today to tell me that this is normal on the 2011 because the headlamps are not a sealed unit.

    I thought it was a little odd that the service department had not encountered this before as the 2011's have been out almost the whole year.

    My wife has the car right now so I can't check to see for sure when the car was manufactured but I think I remember the dealer saying it was October.

    Does this sound correct?
    Can I expect headlight haze very soon?
    Any other thoughts on this?
     
  7. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    There should not be any water in your headlight. Period! I would be more agressive in your approach if they continue their line of reasoning.
     
  8. spiderman

    spiderman wretched

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    They are sealed, just might be yours is not very well.

    I had this happen once.... after replacing my parking lights with LEDs. Guess enough moisture got in there and the next morning it was a little foggy. It cleared up and haven't had any problems since.
     
  9. DELLsFan

    DELLsFan New Member

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    Just bought my 2011 Prius III on Saturday and by Tuesday I was noticing some minor condensation within the housing. I remember thinking to myself how many idiotic looks I would get from the service department if I complained about it ... and then just forgot about it as it went away ... but now that I found you and this topic all here ... :D

    Frankly, I don't care what they THINK ... every little problem I think I have with the car (that I love, btw) is going in to the dealership to be fixed. I paid WAY too much money to get ANY idiotic looks from those guys! ;)
     
  10. BayAreaPrius11

    BayAreaPrius11 New Member

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    I would be very interested to hear what they have to say if you do report this problem. The dealer I went to the dealer about it said they would love to replace or fix the headlamps for me because they get paid by corporate for doing warranty work. HOWEVER corporate is telling them not to do anything because the headlights are not supposed to be sealed.
     
  11. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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  12. rrg

    rrg Active Member

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    My Prius 2011 Aug had the condensation. The very day I bought it, it was storming hard. So when I returned I told the dealer and he said it was normal. I disagreed and later found it does, now, mention it in the manual that condensation in lights is normal. I still disagree.

    THE PROBLEM:
    I found were the water is getting in.
    The seam between the clear lens and the black housing.
    More specifically, IMO evidence points to the sharp V shape on the top of the light next to the hood. Water stands there because of the angle pointing down.
    My driveway also points downward. Maybe on flat driveways water drains properly with no problem??

    MY FIX:
    So as I did the horn upgrade (removed bumper) I took the lights out and wrapped the
    seams with electrical tape. No problems anymore. So it's not the light sockets.

    The tape does not fix the seams but it does divert the water away from the seam.

    I was not up for the back and forth fight, time and effort with the dealer. Two reasons, because I want to mod/open the lights after the warranty is over someday. Second, I don't trust those junior mechanics with my new car. Maybe in a year or two.

    My IDEA
    If the dealer is not going to change the lights out, I would at least seal the light with tape for now until they can get around to a TSB. Since they wrote it in the manual they might hide behind that forever.

    If they ever issue a TSB, I just remove the tape and bring it in. But I would never let the water get in while you go after the dealer to fix it. The more it gets condensation the more chance of damage inside.

    I do check it every rain day we had since the fix. I will have eagle eyes going into this winter.
    So if any condensation comes back this winter then I will have a sit down with the dealer.
    my2cents
     
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  13. Wxboy73

    Wxboy73 New Member

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    I've noticed condensation twice on the inside of my 2010 headlights but haven't mentioned it to the dealer yet. If it appears to be getting worse I will bring it to their attention.
     
  14. rrg

    rrg Active Member

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    Take pictures or a video wiping the lens with condensation inside when it happens. The dealer can't deny the proof.
     
  15. PearlJammer

    PearlJammer Member

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    Thats not condensation...it's bay fog.
     
  16. Den49

    Den49 Member

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    The dealer may be correct. I purchased a new Lincoln Town car a couple months ago (I know it is the polar opposite of the Prius but I love both of them). It was late in the evening, damp and cold, and after they ran the car through the car wash during the predelivery cleanup, one of the front HID headlamps had condensation inside. At the time, the saleman said to bring the car back and they would replace it. However, the next day the condensation disappeared and has not returned. I later read in the owners manual that the headlamps are vented and temporary condensation is normal. So, it may be normal for the new Prius also. Do you have HID headlights? "Acceptable" and "unacceptable" condensation are defined in the attached page from the Lincoln owner's manual. Is there a similar page in the 2011 Prius owner's manual?

    If you have a leak and are getting "unacceptable" moisture, I suggest you go to the dealer immediately and get them to replace the defective lamp(s) rather than do any kind of DIY fix which voids your warranty. The lamps are expensive.
     

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