Front Sidemember

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by Aria, Sep 22, 2019.

  1. Aria

    Aria New Member

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    Does anyone have experience with replacing the front sidemember of an 04-09 Prius? I was involved in an accident where the front bumper was damaged, mostly on the passenger side. The rebar was bent and the tip of the right front (passenger side) sidemember was bent at about 45 degrees to the to the drivers side. The actual frame was inspected and ok but I was told the side-member had to be replaced. They were trying to charge retail for the part at about $479, but I was able to find a part from an oem dealer for $320. The labor didn’t seem out of this world at about $540 for 7.5 hours of labor, but then again I am not familiar with this fix. Total cost would be just under $900.

    Is this a fair price? And is anyone familiar with how they will repair the sidemember? I have done a number of repairs on my car (wheel hubs/bearings, valve cover gasket, break pads, combo meter/cluster, etc) but I am in no way familiar or comfortable with any type of welding. Is this something that can be done at home and is welding required? It hasn’t been easy finding information about how the side member gets repaired. Hoping there are some fellow priuschat users that have experienced the same damage and are more familiar with the repair.

    Any feedback would be very helpful! Would love to get this back kn the road within the next few months.
     
  2. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    Once signed in to TIS (more info), you'll find the CR tab (Repair Manual for Collision Damage) is where the instructions for that kind of work will be found.

    If I remember correctly, they have some fairly strict requirements, where to make cuts, how far to offset different cuts, requirements of finished weld, etc.
     
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  3. Elektroingenieur

    Elektroingenieur Senior Member

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    The manual @ChapmanF kindly mentioned (BRM124U, also sold in print on eBay) describes two acceptable repair strategies for the front side member. If it’s done by partial cutting, the radiator side support and front crossmember are also removed; for assembly replacement, the front fender apron is removed, too.
    MIG welding, both plug and continuous, is required, though Collision Repair Information Bulletin #181 (PDF) authorizes squeeze-type resistance spot welding (STRSW) in place of the MIG plug welds. There are people who do MIG welding at home, but it’s probably not worth the investment for a one-time repair.

    Toyota explains the repairs only in abbreviated form, on the assumption that the technician has had general training, such as Toyota’s courses T300, Welding Techniques for Collision Repair, and T460, Structural Body Repair Techniques, for which the handbooks and the Fundamental Body Repair Procedures (BRM002E) book are included in the subscription to techinfo.toyota.com. I’d recommend hands-on training, however (available at community colleges) if you want to make high-quality welds that will restore the original collision performance.
     
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  4. Aria

    Aria New Member

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    Thank you both! It appeared to be a squeeze type welding after removing the rebar. But in a nutshell you both confirmed I’ll need a professional to do the work. Thanks again!
     
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