Headlight problem

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by AlphaTeam, Jul 5, 2007.

  1. Bsacavag

    Bsacavag New Member

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    I hope they also include 2004 in the investigation as that's what I have and have the same exact problems. 3 times now we've had BOTH headlights go out together! There is no doubt someone is going to get killed with this problem!
     
  2. rachmaninoff

    rachmaninoff New Member

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    I had this problem about 2 years ago my right headlight would go out soon after i started driving. It started out a small issue would go out rarely but then it would start going out almost instantly after driving a short distance. Cycling the lights on and off helped but it was a lost cause. i brought it in and they replaced the light but the dealership i guess didn't test it and the new lamp was faulty and was stuck in high beam mode so i had to have it replaced again.

    now 2 years later i just saw my right headlight go out. it only happened once and when i cycled my headlights off then on it came back and hasnt gone out again since but what the heck whats with this issue keeps coming back??
     
  3. yardman 49

    yardman 49 Active Member

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    Does the 2004 come with fog lights? Even if both headlights fail completely, you could use these in a pinch. Also, even if both headlights went out, your running lights would still be lit in the front of the car, so you wouldn't be completely "invisible" to oncoming traffic.
     
  4. Ct. Ken V

    Ct. Ken V Active Member

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    Hey, yardman,

    Although I have a 2005, the only difference between the 2004 & 2005 model years was the number of option packages being reduced from 9 to 6 by the addition in 2005 of the rear wiper being added as "standard equipment". So yes, if you had HID headlights in either year (this still holds true all the way up through the 2009 model year), then you automatically had foglights (the 2 features are grouped together within the different option package levels).

    Ken (in Bolton,Ct)
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. GreenIsGood

    GreenIsGood New Member

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    I've had this headlight problem for about three weeks or so. Went to dealer, said they couldn't find anything wrong with the lights or the panel. I have only 20,500 miles on this car, a 2008 with HID.
    Called Toyota, talked to two different people and have been assigned a case number. Out of curiosity, has anyone with this problem taken the car to Rohrich Toyota in Pittsburgh? If so, what was the result?
     
  6. etkal

    etkal New Member

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    I also have recently had this same problem with the HID lights. A couple of months ago my fiancée told me my headlight was out, so I went and turned the car back on, and it was fine. I figured she was looking at it from the side or something. Then a month later I was pulled up behind another car and noticed in the reflection that it was out. Turning the lights off and then back on cleared it up. The next time when I cycled the lights it came back on but very dim, then eventually came back up. Since then it seems to be happening more often.

    The dealer said they've only seen a few problems and just replace the bulbs, but at a few hundred dollars each it seems these should last a lot longer!

    I just called Toyota Customer Experience and reported it, got a case number. I'll also call NHTSA once I get my VIN handy.

    <ET>
     
  7. windstrings

    windstrings Certified Prius Breeder

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    Could be coming back.. I think there are bad lots of bulbs out there, or else the ballast is not quite in harmony with the bulbs making them go out prematurely.

    At any rate, my guess is the dealer didn't put your bulb back in quite right and it was misaligned preventing your highbeam from engaging.

    If you look closely while someone plays with your high and low beam, you will see the metal reflector move back and forth to deflect the light to create high vs low beam.... just my guess.

    Bulbs are getting so cheap now, its almost a non issue, unless you can get the dealer to replace it, its no longer rape and pillage like they tried to initially make it.
     
  8. Miss_Taz

    Miss_Taz New Member

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    Yeah, I just had it there in May 2009 also. Mine is an 06, with about 50k miles on it. They sold me "sorry, Charlie", not covered. I'm going to try this 800-331-4331 number to see if I can get it covered. If not, I'm going to ebay to get me a new set of bulbs...

    -Vikki

    EDIT: Oops, I lied. I normally go to Rorhich, but this time I happened to be in Cory, so I went to Kenny Ross. My bad. I also filled out a NHTSA report this morning. So we'll see...
     
  9. Miss_Taz

    Miss_Taz New Member

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    OK - Logged my case w/Toyota. Let the fun begin! :-D
     
  10. tadyergey

    tadyergey Junior Member

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    I have a 2006 with 60K miles on it adn just noticed this problem. No rhyme or reason when it kicks off as of yet, but a cycle on the on/off switch fixes it.

    I'll get my VIN and give NHTSA a call...
     
  11. windstrings

    windstrings Certified Prius Breeder

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    Its a good thing this problem at least has that temporary fix till it progresses and becomes more often. Especially since some folks have claimed both out at once!
     
  12. diatomguru

    diatomguru New Member

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    Ive had the same problem for about a year now. I made a complaint to Toyota and was given a case number. Someone from Toyota called me, and politely informed me I was Up shit creek. Though he did call the dealership and they agreed to pay half of the cost for replacement. .. $340. What a deal, Riiight.
    So I filed a complaint with NHTSA. I am hoping for a recall. I am worried, from what I have read that replacing the bulbs might only temporarally fix the issue, and that it might happen again. In which case Id be dishing out the money again.

    Im going to have to do something soon, as last night BOTH headlights went out while I was driving!!! This is dangerous.

    Some comments on the problem. Sometime the light goes out, and I will flick the switch off and on and it will fix the light for the rest of the drive. Sometimes this doesnt work to fix the light, and sometimes the light doesnt go out. So several scenerios are happening.

    When is Toyota going to step up to this problem??


     
  13. windstrings

    windstrings Certified Prius Breeder

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    Sounds like a class action lawsuit may be in order.

    My first gut feeling is its all about the bulbs, bulbs seem to be inconsistent in quality.
    For instance, if it was the ballast, I wouldn't expect this scenario to happen as follows.....

    I have two prius of which both started developing the problem, so I went on ebay because to me that was cheaper than dealing with a dealer "Isn't that like playing against the dealer at vegas?... who usually wins?" LOL!.. anyway... I replaced all 4 bulbs. Maybe 5K miles later one of the ebay bulbs went bad again "at this point you would think a bad ballast right", but I put one of my two remaining stock bulbs "as I originally had 4 but 2 went bad" and replaced the ebay bulb.

    Thats been about 20K miles ago and nothing furthur has happened negative... all 3 remaining ebay bulbs work perfect as well as the stock OEM bulb I put back in...... If it was a bad ballast, I would have seen a repeat of the problem with the old OEM bulb by now.

    This makes me think its bad bulb lots or bad QA or both.

    I had the same decision as you.. if you don't mind a little tinkering, I recommend putting in ebay bulbs unless you can get the dealer to do it all.

    Meanwhile a lawsuit is in order when there is 46 pages and 453 post about this on this thread alone "and there are other threads in PC"
     
  14. seopositive2

    seopositive2 New Member

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    If your car light are not working then you should go to electric specialist. which solve your problem.
     
  15. picadog

    picadog New Member

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    I also have a 2006 Prius with a little over 60K miles. I noticed my left headlight intermittently turning off at around 55K, sometimes both headlights would be out. I wouldn't notice it until I pulled up behind a car or got home since I made sure my fog lights were on, as a backup. Turning headlights off and back on would help, but it would go out soon after.

    When I took my Prius in for the 60K service, I asked them to fix the headlight problem. I can't remember exactly, but total cost was about $1300. $700 for 2 computers, which was covered by the toyota extended warranty. $300 for 2 bulbs and $200 for labor (not covered). The rest was tax and rounding... (One side note: I was told by the service advisor that the labor for the bulb replacement was going to be $100. He didn't clarify that it was for each bulb.)



    I checked NHTSA site about the headlight problem. Looks like they initiated a defect investigation. Here's the report:

    NHTSA Action Number: PE09019

    Make: TOYOTA
       
    Model: PRIUS
    Manufacturer : TOYOTA MOTOR CORPORATION
    Year : 2006
    Component :
     EXTERIOR LIGHTING
      EXTERIOR LIGHTING:HEADLIGHTS
     
    Date Investigation Opened : April 17, 2009
    Date Investigation Closed : Open
     
  16. picadog

    picadog New Member

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    Here's the initial summary from the Defect Investigation.

    NHTSA Action Number: PE0901
    Summary:
    THE OFFICE OF DEFECTS INVESTIGATION (ODI) HAS RECEIVED COMPLAINTS FROM PRIUS OWNERS OF HEADLIGHT FAILURE WHILE DRIVING. A SIGNIFICANT NUMBER OF THE REPORTS ALSO STATE THAT BOTH HEADLIGHTS FAILED (112 REPORTS) RESULTING IN TOTAL LOSS OF HEADLIGHT ILLUMINATION WHILE DRIVING. REPORTS ALSO INDICATE THAT FAILURE OCCURS WITH NO WARNING.
     
  17. windstrings

    windstrings Certified Prius Breeder

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    PIcadog, its undetermined as to what the real fix is. While some have had a "hysterectomy" and replaced everything possible, others have simply replaced the bulbs only to achieve the same fix.

    I have read of "no one" who simply replaced the bulb and it didn't fix the problem.

    However, its also unclear as to whether the bulbs are the source of aggravation or the ballast not making a marriage made in heaven to the bulb and creating an early divorce :p

    either way, its nice you got the works.. hopefully thats the end of it for you and you're fixed.
    Seems toyota and thier dealers cannot come to a general consensus as to what the fix is and how to fix it... still alot of confusion out there about the matter.. even though so many issues have occured.

    I'm starting to think this "lack of communication" amongst coorporate Toyota is due to an attempt to cover up the matter or at best keep a low profile.

    Definately frustrating.... I'm surprised I haven't seen this issue on national news yet.

    Better to admit a problem and fess up and fix it than cover up.

    What we have here is half and half accountability.. if you confront them strongly enough they half heartedly fess up, but if you don't stir the mud they lay silent and your on your on.
     
  18. Miss_Taz

    Miss_Taz New Member

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    Seems like they're getting stingier. Here's the offer they gave me:

    They will pay for the bulb (about $150), and I have to pay the installation labor (about $42). (I only have one failing at this time.)

    I tried to get them to let me just buy the bulb & install it myself. The dealer was cool with that, but Toyota Care was not. Grrr...

    Sigh... I'm afraid 3 months down the road, the other one will blow!

    -Vikki
     
  19. mymimi

    mymimi New Member

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    it maybe the auto light control problem .
     
  20. skruse

    skruse Senior Member

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    A colleague with a 2006 has had to replace his HID headlights three times. With copies of all replacement receipts he just received a check for $750 from Toyota.
     
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