Hanging plastic underbody by front wheel of 2010 Prius: safe to drive & options to fix later?

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by nowayyeahright, Mar 11, 2019.

  1. nowayyeahright

    nowayyeahright New Member

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    2010 Prius
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    III
    Hello everyone! This is my first time posting here so sorry if I'm in the wrong place. I commute 1 hour to my job, and today I work from 10am to 10pm. Halfway through my journey this morning there was some very strong wind, and I suddenly heard a loud ratting sound from the front of my car. When driving it sounds like a card in bicycle spokes, and sometimes makes a grinding sound which makes me think it's dragging on the ground or hitting the wheel. I made it to work and tried to take some pictures, but it's hard to get a clear view. The whole plastic shell around the left front wheel feels loose, and there's a piece hanging off completely. There's also a bad burned plastic smell.
    About one year ago, I hit a raccoon (poor guy). He didn't get run over by the wheels, he got dragged under and ripped off my splash shield/guard. I intended to have it replaced but got the runaround from a garage I had never gone to before, and just didn't end up having one reattached. Probably a stupid decision, but my go-to garage said it wasn't necessary to have it replaced. Now I'm sure the raccoon is what loosened this piece too, since I've never been in an accident or hit anything else with my car. So to get to the point: Is it unsafe to drive home tonight? Should I take breaks as I'm driving or something? Also, how do I go about fixing this? Should I have all the plastic pieces replaced, or just get all of the loose pieces removed? If they are removed, how will that affect my car in the future?

    Please help a paranoid idiot out.

    Thanks!


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    #1 nowayyeahright, Mar 11, 2019
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 11, 2019
  2. Pluggo

    Pluggo Senior Member

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    Since it now forms a big air-scoop you could damage the piece further if you drive home that way. For a temporary fix, use some string or coat-hanger wire to pull the leading edge up closer where it belongs. As far as the card in the spokes sound, try to move that fender-liner away from the tire.
     
    Raytheeagle likes this.
  3. tankyuong

    tankyuong Senior Member

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    Just zip tie it
     
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  4. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    Look at the other side, see what fasteners are missing, get them, install them.

    The dangling piece mostly tucks inside the front corner of the bumper, and there's a screw securing both the loose piece and the front underpiece. Probably that screw is item #10 here:

    Fender & Components for 2010 Toyota Prius | McGeorge Toyota Parts
     
    #4 Mendel Leisk, Mar 11, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2019
  5. FnRedPrius

    FnRedPrius Active Member

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    You can get bunches of those fake rivet expansion fasteners on like very cheaply. For my next trick, I need to replace both splash guards and the spoiler. I actually have enough zip ties between the bumper cover that it looks like Frankenstein's stitches. Where I can, I replace those plastic ribbits with 1/4 inch body clips and screws. Those don't break from getting cold. Also, don't think about the aftermarket POS replacement parts as they are exactly that and I have seem plastic milk cartons that are thicker and more durable.
     
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