Used 2013 Prius Base Model w/ 142K mi for $6000 I Need Your Input

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by Brandon Russell, Jun 26, 2021.

  1. Brandon Russell

    Brandon Russell New Member

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    Hi Everyone,

    Title says it all. I'm looking to purchase a used 2013 Toyota Prius with 142K mi on it in California for $6K. I'm told the electronics work, it passed smog, and it has the catalytic converter (will get it secured if purchased). Minimal scratches and dings on the exterior.

    Is this a good price for the vehicle?

    What should I look out for when I see it and test drive it?

    Any comments or questions are much appreciated. I'm very much looking to join the community of Prius owners!

    FYI I've done research online but much of the available information is fragmented and/or out of context. I value your comments as they supplement my research!
     
  2. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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    The 2010-14's have poor pistons, rings, defective brake pumps/master cylinders and flaky inverters. The egr design is bad and clogs. The rings frequently cause excessive oil consumption and blown head gaskets. The head gaskets slowly die leading some engines to hydrolock and thrown rods. Even with a new head gasket, poor rings remain so the better repair is another engine, ideally completely rebuilt.

    Budget conscious buyers should consider a Corolla, Civic or Camry with reasonable miles. Exclude the 2007-2010 Camrys which also have bad rings.

    3 Reasons To Steer Clear Of A 2010-2013 Toyota Prius | Torque News

    Finally these problems are not theoretical. Toyota has acknowledged the rings, brake pumps and inverters as flawed designs. They replaced rings, brake boosters and inverters free if they failed within a certain time period or mileage. Egr repairs alone are $800-$1,000 at a dealer, the other items listed above are $2k or more each. I have not even mentioned the Hybrid battery.
     
    #2 rjparker, Jun 27, 2021
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2021
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  3. bettergolf

    bettergolf Active Member

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    All the above is true, but that doesn't mean you WILL have a problem any time soon. There are thousands that have no problem at all. I had a guy come look at my 2015 (it's for sale) and he was driving a 2010 with 225k miles. He has never had a problem but did say it was beginning to use some oil now. That being said, I would stay clear of any Gen 3 with over 100k miles.
     
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  4. ASRDogman

    ASRDogman Senior Member

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    It would be best to look at the Kelly Blue Book value for "individual" sales, not dealer price.
    That will give you a good idea. Seems high to me, but I don't the average prices for where ever you are.
    EVERY car has some type of problem.

    You need to find out if the EGR system has been cleaned, properly. If it has, that's good!
    If not, not so good. This car may not have a problem. Depends on how the car is driven.
    A clogged egr cooler can cause the head gasket to fail.
    I've cleaned my system twice since I've purchased it. I know have 240,000 miles on it, no problem
    with the head gasket. Hybrid battery is still going. And it's a 2010. Sooner or later I'll have to replace it,
    under normal wear and tear. It's 11.5 years old, I think that's pretty good.
    I've had no other problems from failures with it. I've replace front and rear hubs, normail wear and tear.
    And sooner or later I'll replace the struts and shock. I just received an invertor pump, and will soon get
    a water pump. Which I'll replace at 250,000 miles.
    I use about 1.5 qts of oil between the 10,000 mile oil changed. I drive 85% highway miles, at 65mph, 90%
    of the time. I don't drive my Prius like it's a Formula 1 car. Drive it like it was designed to drive, and it will
    more than likely give you years of service.

    Who told you the electronics work? What do they mean by that???
    Do they have paperwork from whoever they take the car to for oil changes and such?

    Never buy a car without driving it. And check ALL the electronics to make sure they are working, correctly.
    There are apps for your phone you can get to test the car and find out about possible problems.
    Then you can decide if it's worth the price.
     
  5. royrose

    royrose Senior Member

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    To me the bottom line is whether you can do preventive maintenance yourself as ASR does. Take a look at DIY videos by NutsAboutBoltz in the gen 3 maintenance section of this forum. If they look like fun, consider going for it. If they are overwhelming, forget it.
     
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  6. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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    The problem is the proposed vehicle already has 142k miles. If it was under 50k with records, an enhanced maintenance regiment might help the new owner get another 100k miles of reliable service.
     
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  7. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    I think the Exhaust Gas Recirculation clogging (including the EGR passages in intake manifold) is the primary cause of head gasket failure, and the piston/ring revision (part way through model year 2014) could only mitigate oil consumption. I don’t see the revised pistons/rings curing EGR clogging, or reducing the risk of head gasket failure.

    Prudent course with ANY 3rd gen model year:

    1. clean the complete EGR system regularly, say every 50k miles.

    2. check oil level regularly, and change at 5k miles or 6 months, whichever comes first.
     
    #7 Mendel Leisk, Jun 27, 2021
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2021
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  8. royrose

    royrose Senior Member

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    Under 50K in this market would cost a lot more. Any $6,000 vehicle is a risk. With EGR cleaning, I think the risk is reasonable.
     
  9. Tekken

    Tekken Member

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    If you love to do maintenance, which a EGR, Pipe, and manifold clean about 4-6hrs with experience. With 142k mile on and i assuming current own didn't have 100k maintenance. You have to do spark change, transmission oil change, coolant change and add OIL catch can.

    I'm driving 2013 Two. when i got it, It was 93k and Now, 103100k and 55MPG @ Los Angeles traffic. Without those maintenance, You can not get over 50MPG. Good luck for $60k
     
  10. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    The EGR needs to cleaned ASAP.
     
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  11. Pulse07

    Pulse07 Member

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    Hmm. I would say no.
     
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  12. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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  13. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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    Which is why I say budget conscious buyers should consider a Corolla, Civic or Camry with reasonable miles. Exclude the 2007-2010 Camrys which also have bad rings. For $6k he can get a conventional, highly reliable car and he won't be stuck with another $5k in major maintenance over the next couple of years. Reliability is more than saving repair costs, it means safe and dependable transportation.
     
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  14. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

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    if vehicle history is just an opinion, sure why not you only live once.
     
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  15. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

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    some people just want to consume less gasoline and be willing to shell out more money for that rather than buy a economical car with better reliability. Saving the world cost a lot of money.
     
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  16. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

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    talk about price gauging and inflation :eek:
     
  17. Samuel Williams Jr

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    LOL and the "problem child," of the Prii world, keeps on rolling. :)

    So to the OP, now you know. And these are the views and experience from owners that have Gen 3's. The bad ring's, and excess oil consumption and the crap EGR system which makes the ring's worst. If it has pending issues? They are not something you will discover on a short test drive.

    If this one has made it to 142,000,miles and the EGR system has never been pulled apart and serviced/cleaned?
    It is one of the rare few, but it is a ticking time bomb?

    The price is based on the rep of the Gen 2 Prius where a 142000 miles is considered nothing. But this one is not that.

    Still it has not blown up yet. If you chose to get it? Then plan on pulling the EGR Valve,cooler and intake manifold apart as soon as you get it home! If that is not a part of your plan's? I'd pass on this one.
     
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