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Hybrid Vehicle Maintenance, Repair and Concerns



  • Hi,

    I am considering buying a 06/07 HH with around 60k miles. 4x2. I had an 02 4cyl 4x2 model and consistently received 25 MPG. I loved it. I am looking to buy another Highlander and was toying with the idea of a hybrid. Never had one before and was a little concerned about maintenance, and if its really worth the extra $$ to buy, vs.just getting another 4 cyl. Some of the options I like are hard to find on 4 cyl, (sunroof, pwr seats, alloys). Can anyone share their experience with their HH as far as hybrid specific repairs past 50k mile range. Any special maintenance? Aside from the batteries which I thought are warrantied until 100,000 miles, is there anything else that could go wrong with the hybrid system that would cost an arm and a leg? If the electrical motor went out, or electronics, etc.
  • mp4mp4 Posts: 1
    I took my 2010 Prius to the dealer for its first oil change because I just hit 5k miles. The book says to change the oil at 5k miles but the dealer is saying 10k because of the 0w 20. Is that right or is the dealer trying to not pay for the oil changes he promised?
  • whitey9whitey9 Posts: 138
    !0K mi for 0w-20 equipped engines. Some "early" '10s were not filled with 0w-20, so they get the 5K mi oil change interval instead. Make certain you have the correct maintenance manual. Didn't the salesman tell you? HA!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,420
    Well, once out of warranty, just about any modern car, hybrid or not, is going to cost a good deal of $$$ to fix if a major component fails---so be it Benz or Buick, Civic or Suburban, if you blow out a transmission after warranty, for instance, you're in the hole for thousands of bucks. The only disadvantage of repairing a high mileage hybrid is that you're pretty much stuck with taking it to the dealer, as very few independent shops overhaul hybrid power systems.

    Hybrid technology has proven itself to be just as reliable as any modern powertrain. If you are concerned, get yourself an extended warranty that specifically cover these electronics, would be my advice.


  • biomanbioman Posts: 172
    The reason the dealer told you that the next oil change will be at 10k miles after the current one is because Toyota updated the oil change interval if you are using synthetic oil. Of course the synthetic oil would be 0w-20.
  • Not sure this question belongs here but hope I'll get a few responses. We may be leaving our 2010 Prius for a couple of months in NE winter (garaged). I was told when we got it that we could remove the battery for the time we were gone and everything would be ok. I am now getting nervous about doing that and wonder if others have experience with this.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,420
    edited September 2010
    Well in a few months the battery will be dead anyway, so you might as well leave it in there and just unhook it (the 12V battery I mean, that starts the car). Best thing to do is buy a maintenance-type battery charger, also called a "tender", which has a computer in it that maintains proper charge and then shuts on and off as necessary. If leaving an electrical device on there unattended for a few months makes you nervous, (presuming there is no one you can ask to look in on the car now and then) then at least buy a battery charger to re-charge the dead battery when you get back. Do NOT attempt to jump start a completely long-dead battery!!!

    If the car will not re-activate itself, or start, even after you have recharged the 12V battery, you'll have to flat-bed it to the dealership.


  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Be sure to park it 'battery side out', so you can jump it if need be, or get a tow hook onto it and tow it if necessary.

    However, a trickle charger or 'tender' as shifty references is the way to go. I leave one on my motorcycle all winter long.
  • Thanks - the battery would be stored in the house so it would not lose a charge (we have done this with other cars - no problems). Got nervous though when Toyota told me car would have to be reprogrammed if taking the battery out "lost its memory".
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,420
    I see no reason to take it out. Get the "tender" and it'll stay charged and this will also prevent freezing damage.


  • sas9sas9 Posts: 28
    Hi - not sure if this question belongs here but I didn't get any responses under Nav.

    I have a 2010 and my nav map shows icons for gas stations, restaurants, etc. I don't want these icons to show up but am having trouble removing them permanantly. Can anyone help with the instructions to do this?

    Also, can anyone help me remove the split screen permanantly? Thanks,
  • whitey9whitey9 Posts: 138
    A 2010 what? Toyota? Honda? Yugo? Have you no "Owner's Manual"?
  • hsk1hsk1 Posts: 1
    I recently got Glass Door warning Light but all the doors are closed. How to get rid of this
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    edited December 2010
    Take it back to the dealership who will find the problem and repair it under warranty.
  • whitey9whitey9 Posts: 138
    What the heck is a "glass door"?
  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,168
    Judging by the relatively low number of comments in this discussion, one could conclude that hybrids are quite reliable. Of course, the majority of hybrids are Priuses, but there haven't been a lot of complaints or concerns expressed about the other hybrids, either.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,420
    Seems like "maintenance" is maintenance, no matter what you drive---it seems to work out all the same, be it gas, diesel or hybrid.


  • annek1annek1 Posts: 4
    My problem is not so much with the Honda Hybrid, but with the Honda dealership. They nickel and dime (more accurately, hundreds and two hundreds) me to death until it's plain that keeping the car is more expensive than buying it.

    For instance, the oil shield under the oil filter was ripped off by a crummy dirt road. The Honda dealer wanted $130 to put on a new one, a piece of $5 or $10 material bolted to the underbody, and they refused to tack on the old one, which could easily be done with plastic ties--you know, like give a little service to a long-standing customer.

    That's just one example. I have many others and I will never buy a Honda again.
  • I bought my daughter a 2008 Escape Hybrid in December 2007. Fantastic vehicle for the first 3 years/50K miles...Then In January, 2011, she made a stop on the way home, got back into the escape, and when started, it revved to 2500 RPM. She turned it off, and on the re-start it revved to 3500 RPM. She went ahead and started driving & the RPM's came back down, but this has been an issue ever since. Now it will only travel about 1/2 half mile in Electric Mode before the engine kicks on. Mileage has dropped from just over 30 to 24-25. Once she tried to drive out of a parking lot & the engive revved to 2500 RPM's, but the car wouldn't move, nearly causing a crash. The car finally started to go, but she travelled about 3/4 mile at 10 mph with the engine revving at 2500 RPM. Last week, she got into the car, started it (revving to 1800RPM's) put it in reverse & the car wouldn't move. Finally after starting & stopping 2 times, on the third try it started working "normal". This has been going on ( engine revving to charge battery & not moving) for 4 months. It's been to the dealership 3 times, checked by the "Regional Rep" twice & they say it is normal, since no code comes up! The Regional Rep had the gall to tell me that ford has not had one instance of a failed battery. He also stated that "all batteries loose power over time", which is what is probably causing the engine to revv up, but they won't replace it unless it totally fails to hold a charge!! Obviously, reading some of the post at Edmonds, Ford has replaced some of the battery packs. Has anybody had similar problems with FORD??? The dealership did service the transmission, thinking this might be the problem...& they didn't charge me for the supposed 17+ hrs they have into it, so I guess I should be glad for that, but I'm thinking this will be the last hybrid I will ever own. (between my wife & kids, we own 9 fords so it's not like I have it in for ford....not yet anyway) Thanks...
  • rmgildenrmgilden Posts: 1
    Interestingly, just yesterday I was driving from Los Angeles to San Jose on I-5 and I had a major failure. My 2008 Escape Hybrid completely failed....I lost all electricity, power steering, brakes....everything. I safely coasted to a stop on the side of the road VERY glad that it happened around 3pm and not on the Grapevine, at night, or with my children in the car because I had no power for hazards and couldn't lock the doors. The vehicle was towed to a dealership 55 miles inland and I am awaiting the analysis. I am renting a car and will have to drive back 3 hours south to drop off the rental and pick up the Escape WHENEVER it's fixed. If this is an expensive repair (which I am expecting it to be), this will be the last Ford I purchase.
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