Excessive oil consumption. Issue resolved by Toyota.

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by ctt, May 24, 2016.

  1. ctt

    ctt New Member

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    Prius IV 2010 hatchback. 112,000 miles. Serviced every 5,000 miles by Toyota dealerships. Out of warranty. No extended Toyota warranty.
    Trouble: During sharp turns, a yellow warning light appears on dashboard.
    Problem: 4/22/16 Toyota service found extremely low oil level. Sharp turns caused insufficient oil for pick up tube.
    Assessment: Toyota service technician concluded excessive oil consumption.
    Recommendation: 4/25/16 Service advisor said my options were
    1) Rebuild engine for $8,300 (parts and labor)
    2) Install used engine for $4,500 (parts and labor)
    3) Monitor oil level and add oil between service appointments. (Drove 300 miles. Burned 1/4 quart of oil.)
    My opinion: Between 2 service appointments (5,000 miles), the engine went from normal operation to burning over 3 quarts of oil. The recommendation to rebuild or install a used engine as a first step was extreme.
    Escalation A: 4/25/16 The service manager said other options were
    1) Conduct a tear down diagnostic for $2,000.
    2) Run an oil consumption test to determine if the engine burned 1 quart of oil in 1,100 - 1,300 miles.
    3) Check if a third party extended warranty was purchased. (I did not buy a third party extended warranty.)
    4) If I was not satisfied with the dealership's options, contact Toyota Customer Experience Center (800 331 4331).
    Escalation B: 4/25/16 The Toyota Customer Experience Center documented the work done at the dealership, my disbelief in the fix and the service history of my Prius since purchase. The Toyota Customer Experience Center reviewed my case in 24 hours and called me with a decision.
    Decision: 4/26/16 The Toyota Customer Experience Center recommended replacing the engine. Toyota Customer Experience Center supplied the used engine free of charge and coordinated with the dealership to have the old engine removed and the used engine installed at the lower warrantee labor rates. I approved their recommendation.
    Outcome: My out of pocket expense was $1,600 for the labor to remove the old engine and install the used engine. The removal and installation took 10 days (7 business days). The dealership rented me a car at cost. The Toyota Customer Experience Center saved me $2,900 (=$4,500 - $1,600). The used engine has 50,000 miles and is warrantied for 12 months. My Prius runs great. In the future, I will buy another Toyota.
     
  2. The Electric Me

    The Electric Me Go Speed Go!

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    Sounds like a very good resolution.
     
  3. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    welcome! were you having any problems besides the light?
     
  4. ILuvMyPriusToo

    ILuvMyPriusToo Active Member

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    Welcome aboard!

    Sounds like you were treated well. Glad you are happy with the resolution!
     
  5. Former Member 68813

    Former Member 68813 Senior Member

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    congrats!

    [​IMG]

    IMHO, this was the most conservative and reasonable option.
    Besides, everyone and anyone should check oil from time to time.
     
  6. Ketan

    Ketan Junior Member

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    I have same problem in my 2010 Prius. Thank you for sharing your experience. My dealership recommended similar options. I will escalate the case. Thank you.
     
  7. yeldogt

    yeldogt Active Member

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    I have always been impressed with the way Toyota and Lexus handle these problems. It's why they are so successful -- especially Lexus in a competitive field of vehicles.
     
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  8. FuelMiser

    FuelMiser Active Member

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    Obviously, all the service documentation over the life of the car from the dealerships was the clincher. I doubt you would have gotten anywhere if this service history was not present, i.e., if you DIY all the service. Congrats on getting them to pony up...
     
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  9. Former Member 68813

    Former Member 68813 Senior Member

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    agree.

    curious how many miles on the "new" used engine. if close to 100,000 it could consume oil too. no excuse not to check oil.
     
  10. FuelMiser

    FuelMiser Active Member

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    The OP said the used motor had 50,000 miles and 12 months warranty...
     
  11. ctt

    ctt New Member

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    No other problems just the master warning light.
     
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  12. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    thanks, i'd have thought there would be drivability issues.
     
  13. Bazman

    Bazman Junior Member

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    I have a similar issue. Toyota HQ said no remedy, as not enough complaints have been lodged to date. What a Shame.
     
  14. Former Member 68813

    Former Member 68813 Senior Member

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  15. Rebound

    Rebound Senior Member

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    Curious: What if you just clean the engine like mad, top and bottom, use degreaser, everything. Then change oil, being sure to use a washer on the drain plug and a new filter and gasket. Drive 1,500 miles, and if level is low, look for signs of leaks.
    An engine that loses oil is leaking oil. If it's leaking at the piston rings or valves, the oil burns. But if it's a gasket or seal, you can often find where the leak is, then determine if it can be easily repaired.
     
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  16. Former Member 68813

    Former Member 68813 Senior Member

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    the typical issue is oil burning, not oil leaking.
     
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  17. Rebound

    Rebound Senior Member

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    Oil only burns if it leaks. It could be a leaking piston ring or head gasket, which is a leak you cannot usually see, but it is a leak. Well... I think you might be able to spot a head gasket leak.
     
  18. Former Member 68813

    Former Member 68813 Senior Member

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    that's not correct terminology.
     
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  19. Rebound

    Rebound Senior Member

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    I'll take your word for it. I know that you're very knowledgeable.
     
  20. 1HipNip

    1HipNip Junior Member

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    2011 Prius 3. Currently has 129.7K miles. In August 2015, at 109K miles, oil light came on. Check dipstick, no visible oil showing. Quick stop at an Auto Zone and bought 2 qts of 5w-20 conventional oil to add to engine. Had enough oil to finish the day.

    Since it was close to 110K miles, took the car for synthetic oil change, 0w-20. Since that oil change with synthetic, I notice I'm burning 1 qt every 1K miles. Just decided to add 5w-20 oil since the engine is just burning the oil. At approximately 116K miles, I notice oil burning at a rate of 1 qt every 800 miles. Just kept adding 5w-20 conventional oil to top it off.

    At 119.2K miles, took it in for oil change and ask for 5w-20 conventional oil to be used. Dealer refused, saying the car calls for 0w-20 synthetic. Ok! With the synthetic, I'm back to burning 1 qt every 1K miles. I just monitored oil consumption every week and added 5w-20 Walmart Super Tech conventional oil ($2.24/qt) to top off.

    At 125K miles, my car was burning .5 qt every 1k miles (probably only conventional oil in the engine by this point).

    Estimate using additional 6 qt of conventional oil (approximately $15) between oil changes; so that will be additional $150 for another 100K miles.
     
    mgb4tim likes this.
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