What to look for in a test-drive of used 2013 Prius

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by John Fish Kurmann, Jul 11, 2021.

  1. John Fish Kurmann

    John Fish Kurmann Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2008
    31
    7
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, Missouri
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    So my 2002 Prius was taken out on 6/18 by a red light-runner (fortunately I was not). I'm not in a position to buy new even if there was much supply so I've been patiently looking for a used 3rd-Gen Prius that wasn't overpriced by 20-30% due to current market conditions. I finally found this one near me with 101,188 miles on it: Used 2013 Toyota Prius Prius II for Sale in Blue Springs MO 64015 Toyo Motors

    Based on the Carfax it seems to have been well-maintained but I'm concerned about potential problems with the head gasket based on what I've read about the 3rd-gen. What should I look and listen for regarding that issue? Any other suggestions when I test-drive it on Monday?
     
  2. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2010
    45,008
    32,157
    80
    Location:
    Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    More’n likely the Exhaust Gas Recirculation is neglected, but the miles are not so high as to be too late. You would want to get on it soon. Isn’t it nice, picking up a relatively low miles recent car, knowing some fairly involved wrenching is near-immediately needed…

    more info:

    Bad Flywheel | PriusChat
     
    Tim Jones likes this.
  3. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2008
    3,815
    1,975
    2
    Location:
    Texas Hill Country
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius v wagon
    Model:
    Three
    A start up rattle that sounds like a rod is broken is a hg. However most fail slowly at first sometimes going months between rattles. Any sign of dark or low coolant, turn and run. The reality is a can of sealant and a coolant change can hide a hg issue. These sometimes result in replacement engines and Toyota has no program help. Businesses specializing in hg replacements have resulted. Its a serious concern.

    Excessive oil consumption is common 2010-2014 and clearly increases blowby, egr clogging and intake manifold oil collection via the hard to access pcv. Caused by a flawed design piston and ring assembly. Bad enough that Toyota would replace pistons and rings during the powertrain warranty. However most issues show in the 150k mile range.

    Inverter and Brake Booster design flaws also are chronic, especially the brake booster. Customer Support Programs will fix a failed unit for at least a year on a 2013 with your mileage. The weak booster will run excessively, as often as every 20 seconds if leaking. However it will not throw codes and qualify for the free replacement until it takes minutes to satisfy. A difficult diy.
     
    Tim Jones likes this.
  4. Tim Jones

    Tim Jones Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2018
    1,118
    407
    3
    Location:
    SE Texas
    Vehicle:
    2013 Prius v wagon
    Model:
    XLE AWD-e
    No.............
     
  5. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    94,191
    42,700
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    at least 2016, if you want almost 20 years like your 02. go big or go home...
     
  6. John Fish Kurmann

    John Fish Kurmann Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2008
    31
    7
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, Missouri
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    A 4th-Gen won't fit into our budget without a load of miles on it, unfortunately. Also, my 2002 needed a new traction battery and transaxle at the time I bought it with ~133,000 miles on it. The dealer reduced the price and I paid for the battery replacement, Toyota replaced the transaxle at no cost to me after that problem was discovered.
     
    #6 John Fish Kurmann, Jul 11, 2021
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2021
    bisco likes this.
  7. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    94,191
    42,700
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    well, it certainly sounds like you'll be able to handle all of the gen3 problems!
     
  8. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2018
    4,364
    4,313
    1
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    Put a clean rag under the driver's seat and rub the seat springs.

    Automakers use cheap steel for those springs, so if the car ever got flooded the rag will come back rusty.
     
  9. John Fish Kurmann

    John Fish Kurmann Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2008
    31
    7
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, Missouri
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    Just as an update, we inspected this Prius today and, while much of it looked good, there were two red flags and I decided to not even test-drive it. There were chunks of asphalt dried inside the wheel wells and a black, semi-oily residue at the end of the tailpipe, which is one of the things Consumer Reports recommended checking. They say the residue should be dry and grey in color.
     
  10. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2010
    45,008
    32,157
    80
    Location:
    Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    Ours is dark grey, but by no means oily.

    4E419153-8985-4E6E-99C8-0F162493566E.jpeg
     
  11. ASRDogman

    ASRDogman Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2018
    3,611
    2,182
    0
    Location:
    Florida
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Consumer Reports? ha ha ha ha ha That's funny!
    All my cars have dried asphalt in the wheel well. It gets there from repaving roads.
    And my tailpipes are wet all the time, because of the catilitic converter.
    Eventually they try if they sit for a few hours or so, the moisture evaporates.
    Those are not very good reason for not buying the car.

    You have to take what cr says with a grain of salt. Manufacturers PAY them to say certain things....
     
    Grit likes this.
  12. John Fish Kurmann

    John Fish Kurmann Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2008
    31
    7
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, Missouri
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    There was quite a lot of asphalt in the wheel wheels, including at least one very large chunk. This was far from an ordinary amount.

    The residue in the tailpipe was black and partly oily. It should not be.

    Where is your evidence that "Manufacturers PAY [CR] to say certain things"? I'm sure they would vociferously dispute that.
     
    Mendel Leisk likes this.
  13. John Fish Kurmann

    John Fish Kurmann Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2008
    31
    7
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, Missouri
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    It wasn't dark grey, it was black as night.
     
  14. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2010
    45,008
    32,157
    80
    Location:
    Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    I’d concur with that. I do think their credibility is slipping though. Or maybe it’s people realizing they are “spread pretty thin”, ie: their product assessments are not that thorough.
     
  15. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2017
    5,302
    3,732
    1
    Location:
    Wilkes Land
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    let me see put the current political tactic on that, where is your proof and evidence that manufactures are NOT paying cr to say certain things?

    list sources also.
     
    ASRDogman likes this.
  16. John Fish Kurmann

    John Fish Kurmann Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2008
    31
    7
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, Missouri
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    No, you're making the accusation that contradicts what CR asserts about their independence. Therefore, the burden of proof is on you.

    This is what the tailpipe smudge on our 2004 Prius with about 239,000 miles on it looks like, and what CR says it should look like. This is not at all what the smudge on the 2013 Prius I've been talking about looked like.

    [​IMG]
     
  17. John Fish Kurmann

    John Fish Kurmann Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2008
    31
    7
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, Missouri
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    I don't buy lots of stuff for which CR posts reviews, but I've never discovered any problems with the products I've bought for which I did rely on CR reviews. Everyone's mileage varies, of course.
     
  18. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2017
    5,302
    3,732
    1
    Location:
    Wilkes Land
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    ha, I was using the main stream media type of argument tactic to stir a response. People think the media is right & credible for that method of questioning.
     
  19. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2017
    5,302
    3,732
    1
    Location:
    Wilkes Land
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    thanks for the helpful tip. If I ever should sell mine, I’ll give the tailpipe a very thorough cleaning just in case.
     
    Samuel Williams Jr and ASRDogman like this.
  20. John Fish Kurmann

    John Fish Kurmann Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2008
    31
    7
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, Missouri
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    Surely you're not admitting you would sell a car you knew had a major engine problem and cover up the evidence. That would be a really lousy thing to do to someone.
     
Loading...