What's your experience been owning a 2014-17 Prius V?

Discussion in 'Prius v Main Forum' started by Yota4Life, Aug 23, 2021.

  1. Yota4Life

    Yota4Life New Member

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    First off, I want to thank everyone on this forum for spreading your knowledge on all things Prius. I've learned so much reading these forums that I was recently able to confidently buy a low mileage 2004 Prius with a hybrid battery that was very recently replaced with a Toyota OEM battery that should last me many years to come.

    So now I'm highly considering purchasing a 2014 (post piston ring redesign) - 2017 Prius V for my wife. My understanding is that even when the hatchback moved into Gen4 in 2016, the V kept the Gen3 specs. Given the known Gen3 issues of EGR clogging (sounds preventable with intermittent removal and cleaning), the inverter, and brake actuator(?), what I want to know is how many V's are actually affected by these issues?

    So if you're reading this and own or have owned a V in this model year range I'd love to hear about your experience with the car.

    Please specify Model Year, bought New or Used, lifetime MPG, maintenance routine, minor maintenance/repairs (brakes, belts, etc. and approximate mileage), any major repairs needed (and approximate mileage it occurred), and just generally how you've felt about owning the car. Please feel free to add any other info you think is pertinent.

    Not only do I want this information for myself to make an informed decision, but I'd love for this thread to be helpful for future people interested in buying this car as well. I think this thread could help consolidate a lot of useful info kind of spread throughout many other threads. I look forward to reading about your experiences! Thanks!
     
  2. lrisius

    lrisius Member

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    This should be an interesting thread if we get a good cross-section of responses. We've got a 2015 v that we have generally been happy with but when I read all the posts about the serious issues I wonder about it. I'd love to get a better sense of how common they are.

    2015 v purchase new. 88k miles now. not sure of exact mpg but generally in the 40s. It will drop a lot when going fast. Pretty much following owner's manual for maintenance- changing oil every 10k. I've installed an oil catch can. No real issues with the car other than some issues with the radio freezing but they eventually installed a software upgrade that fixed it. It's got a sporadic creak now when we climb in the car- probably something in the suspension. I've taken it to the dealer to see if they could find it but couldn't. We've generally been happy- mileage is great (especially for the size of the car), it's a little noisy on the highway. If there wasn't this sense of impending doom, I would say we really like it. I'm planning to do the egr and intake cleaning at 100k.
     
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  3. Rmay635703

    Rmay635703 Senior Member

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  4. Yota4Life

    Yota4Life New Member

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    Thanks for sharing your experience @Irisius ! Yeah reading this forum makes one feel this"impending doom" as you put it, but I get the sense that these things only happen to a percentage of these cars. Like you, I'd like to get a sense of what that percentage really is.
     
  5. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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    Its low if you have a 2015 and above and its under 125k miles. The problem is most of the newer models are just getting to those miles. The best indications come from dealer mechanics who have not seen many of the newer gen3s requiring a head gasket other than those from overheating.
     
  6. Yota4Life

    Yota4Life New Member

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    Yeah that's what I was thinking. Might only be a handful of cars over that 125k. Exceptions would be a taxi service or Uber driver. I'd love to hear from them.

    Do we have any known Toyota dealer mechanics on the forums?
     
  7. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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    Youtube has a Toyota mechanic who does live streams where he answers questions.
     
  8. Yota4Life

    Yota4Life New Member

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    Cool, thanks! I'll have to check it out.
     
  9. FBear

    FBear Senior Member

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    I started out in a 2005 Prius model 3 and loved it for 225K miles. I traded in in for a 2015 Prius V package 4 used for 9 months with 13K miles, which ingot a good deal on, paid 22K. I now have 49K miles, and have had very little trouble with it except due to leaving it parked so long during the pandemic the rear brakes rusted and froze onto the disks, which required both to be replaced as when I started driving it badly scored the disks.. I really love the car!
     
  10. gromittoo

    gromittoo Active Member

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    How is your oil consumption? You have a 2015, so you have the improved rings. Still, I am a firm believer in changing the oil at 5K. I never read the manual, and when the "Service required" light came on every 5k miles, I just changed the oil.

    My 2013 v two just turned over 100k tonight, and at the most recent oil change I was down only 1/4 of 1 quart after 5K miles. I am an Uber driver, and my miles are almost all hard city miles *. I have not installed an Oil Catch Can, but I probably will.

    That said, I did buy a 2017 Prius v four 2.5 months ago, and I plan to replace the oil every 5k in that car as well, even though it has the improved rings. Currently, my wife drives it, so it has not hit 5k on it yet. I find it interesting that the Toyota dealer I bought it from put one of those Oil Change reminder stickers on the upper corner of the windshield, and it indicated the oil change was due in 5k miles.

    I love the 2017 four, but I am saving the 2017 from my Uber and Lyft Driving until either company says my 2013 is too old (ten years for Uber in Philadelphia) or too many miles (150k for Lyft). Then I will switch with my wife.

    Some things I really like: on the 2017:
    - Vastly Improved MFD (MultiFunction Display). It was so great I went and upgraded the the 2013 to an MFD from a 2016 last month.
    - The Rear camera has the guide lines. Apparently these lines are part of the camera, not the MFD, so my 2013 still does not have the guide lines.
    - Generally the 2017 is quieter (note difference in trim levels; two vs. four). I have especially noticed the door locks and the doors when closing. If I am reading in bed, and my wife and daughter have gone out with both cars, I can tell which car just came home by the sound of the door closing.
    - I love the "Compass" display that can be selected on the instrument cluster. It is simple, useful, and beautiful.

    Some things I really DON'T like: on the 2017:
    - Toyota took away the "Hybrid System Indicator" widget from the instrument cluster. On the 2013, it is to the left of the Speedometer. I apparently use it a lot to maximize the amount of regenerative braking, without using the brake pads on normal stops. It also looks cool, once you understand it. As someone who drove only manual transmissions for my first two decades of driving, and I also have 60k miles of riding motorcycle, I really feel a need to have this information.
    - Toyota took away the "Instantaneous MPG" readout next to the odometer. I paid a lot of attention to that, and I miss it.
    - The Auto-Dim + Homelink rearview mirror is heavy, and hard to adjust when switching drivers. I have yet to drive the car when I can evaluate if I like the Auto Dim Feature. I don't see the point of having Home-link, if I don't have a garage door to open. If I drove the 2017 more often, I would definitely downgrade to a standard mirror.
    - I have mixed feelings about the 8-way adjustable seat. Being able to adjust the seat perfectly to fit my tall frame is really wonderful. Once adjusted to fit me, it is so superior to the seat in the 2013. However, without a memory feature, I can't quickly return the seat to my settings after my shorter wife drives it. I am thinking a wedge shaped pillow to support my thighs at the front of the seat might help the 2013 seat. I do 10-12 hour driving shifts when I Uber, and the seat makes a difference.

    * that YouTube Guy who is a Toyota Mechanic seems to think that the problem with 10k oil change intervals is not that 5k is better per ce, it is just that if it takes you a year to reach 10k miles, that is a problem. IIRC, he states 10k or 6 months, whichever comes first is a better policy So a blanket policy of 10k oil changes could mean contaminants have more time to do damage after 6 months. I put 20-25k per year on my 2013, so I get 4 to 5 oil changes per year. Until recently, I took advantage of Sears having half price oil changes for Uber drivers (About $40). The Sears near me closed during the pandemic, so I am back to doing them myself. I think $25 for the full synth 0W20 oil + Toyota filter and an hour of my time five times a year gives me piece of mind, and is worth it. If the "Maint Required" light comes on, the oil gets changed, then I turn off that stupid light.
     
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  11. lrisius

    lrisius Member

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    I'm getting close to 90k and have no apparent issues. I've been changing at every 10k. Normally that gets me about 2 changes per year but it has been a little slower during the pandemic.
     
  12. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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    I love homelink and separately added it to my 2012 v3. If you have any motor operated gates that you routinely use, homelink can be trained to operate those gates as well.

    The "Car Care Nut" Toyota youtube mechanic does recommend 5k mile or 6 month oil change intervals. He does not like oil overfills.
     
  13. gromittoo

    gromittoo Active Member

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    I have always changed my oil at 5K intervals, even when my Honda owner's manual said 7.5k miles. Part of it was I figured it was cheap insurance. I am old enough to remember when all gas stations were full serve, and they usually asked if you wanted the oil level checked. The other reason is that it is easier to keep track of 5k than 7.5k. If the car has Xk miles, and X ends in in a five or zero, it is time to plan an oil change. When my Hondas reached 100k miles, I would switch to 3.3K. This was before Full Synthetic Oil was available at a realistic price (Mobil 1 was available at about $20 / Quart).

    It is not too late to start doing 5K changes. If you have someone else do the change, check how far below full it is before you take it in. You will be due for a spark plug change soon. When you have the plug change done, ask the shop show you the old plugs. Changing the plugs is a huge deal, since the Windshield Wiper assembly must be removed to get to them. I recommend an EGR cooler cleaning at the same time while the wiper tray is out.

    Here is a picture of my 2013's plugs at 94K that only used 1/4 quart per 5k miles. Note no black oil:
    Plug_Pic.jpg

    Below is the 94k dirty EGR cooler vs, the clean EGR cooler I bought on eBay, with a flashlight shown through:

    EGR_Cooler_Flashlight.jpg

    EGR_Cooler_eBay_Cleaned.jpg

    IMHO, I could have waited until 120K for the EGR cooler cleaning. However, I wanted to take a break from Uber driving after cataract surgery anyway. Also, the Wiper Assembly already had to come out.

    IMHO, the Intake manifold EGR passages are more important than the cooler. Also, the IM cleaning does not require as much labor. I recently found that the "tournament style" Intake Manifold was never used on a Prius V, as I may have stated previously, so this uneven clogging also applies to 2015-18 Vs.

    While I was at it, I changed the Engine Coolant using dealer purchased coolant (Pink is new):
    Coolant_OldvsNewat 94k.jpg
     
    #13 gromittoo, Sep 10, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2021
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  14. rjparker

    rjparker Senior Member

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    Here is a good, clean, used egr cooler. Normally it may look like someone poured molten carbon in it and the gunk dries hard like epoxy. This heat transfer fins run the length of the cooler.

    757B1851-0276-44EF-B664-D558D3CA5B90.jpeg

    EBFA58B4-B42B-4897-8856-E944DC027F85.jpeg
     
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  15. Tim Jones

    Tim Jones Senior Member

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    Don't do it...........................................
     
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  16. Pv14driver

    Pv14driver New Member

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    I'm confused - are you asking about a Prius V (as in regular prius) or Prius v Wagon?
    I have a 2014 base model Prius v wagon, just to be clear, and I absolutely love it. Yes, it doesn't have the acceleration or the luxurious quiet ride of our 2012 Camry Hybrid, but it rocks for space and efficiency. We bought it in October of 2020 and it had about 200,000km on it. We did get the EGR cleaned the following spring when I noticed the car rattling on startup. Our mechanic (awesome guys - they do a lot of taxis so are familiar with Camry hybrids and the Prius) said it was totally clogged. Bummer to be sure but we got the car for a good price.
    The only other problem we had was the one front wheel assembly needing replacement, which was done the second week of September. Beware the potholes! I think that may have done it. It is an expensive fix: $670 (Cdn) all told. The symptom for that was the car sounding as if it had noisy winter tires on it.
    One other minor thing is that due to the curve of the roof and the wimpiness of the roof (buckles easily, like many cars nowadays), it is a pain hauling boats, such as a 15' kayak, using foam pads. The pads moved while driving and the paint got scraped off where the middle of the hull ended up resting on the roof. Grr. And let me tell you, trying to find a reasonably priced used roof rack (Thule or Yakima) with the clips that specifically fit this vehicle is very very difficult. Thule and Yakima both came out with new models of their "bare roof" roof racks around 2016-18 so the old parts are hard to come by. I may get the Toyota rack, which is a reasonable price and is likely a Thule, but due to its design it doesn't extend far enough such that it can fit two boats side by side, which is what I want.
    Hope that helps.
     
  17. gromittoo

    gromittoo Active Member

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    I think this thread was meant to refer to 2015 and up Prius V's, since there was a major "Facelift" in 2015. I mentioned my 2013 V because I am contrasting it with my 2017 V. That said, welcome to our club!

    The wimpyness of the roof also has ramifications at the car wash. The rubber weatherstripping blows off during the dry cycle. I have to remember to remove the weatherstripping before going to the car wash.
     
  18. gromittoo

    gromittoo Active Member

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    Was that a wheel bearing that went bad? That would give a loud groaning / whining sound that gets louder and changes pitch the faster you drive. With the 125k miles you have, it is not uncommon. The price seems high, unless a CV joint or half shaft was replaced at the same time.
     
  19. Pv14driver

    Pv14driver New Member

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    I took my car through the car wash before touching up the scraped up roof and sure enough, the weatherstripping was sticking out! Gave me a bit of a scare before I realized that it wasn't a big deal to push it back in. Good idea to remove it before the wash.
     
  20. Pv14driver

    Pv14driver New Member

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    He said he had to replace the "wheel assembly"... the front hub assembly on that side looks shiny new so I'm guessing that's what he means :)
     
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