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Prius Owners w/50K - What We Think Now



  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Mileage and performance are good and I recommend this car to everyone who asks. Based on my experience to date, I would buy another without hesitation. It has been so pleasing to own and drive that now our other vehicles, a Tacoma and a Corolla, seem outdated even though they are dependable.

    This is a good point. How in the world would we go back to a smaller vehicle like a Corolla or Matrix or Civic at 'only' 35 mpg on average?

    No SKS? And how do I fit all that stuff in the trunk of a Corolla? Buy a Matrix I guess...and get 27 mpg...ugghhh! We've been hooked like fish and can't get away... >>\\\\'>J
  • PFFlyer@EdmundsPFFlyer@Edmunds Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 5,807
    If you are a long-term hybrid owner, our Senior Editor, John O'Dell, would love to hear from you! A short email with your maintenance experiences and concerns would be great. Please send to John at by close of business Wednesday, August 22, 2007. Be sure and include your Forums username.


    Moderator - Hatchbacks & Hybrid Vehicles

  • I am in the third year of my ownership of Prius 2004 (bought it used). I changed the motor oil from dino to semi-synthetic to fully synthetic mobil one oil to allow for even further reduced use of oil from the Gulf Oil countries (Saudi Arabia, Iran, etc). It is my contribution to the troops to help minimize our reasons for staying in Iraq. I change my oil every 10K miles now myself, of course after the 36K mile marker has passed. That makes my contribution to the Exxon Mobil company as small as possible. I have justified my extended change interval with a previous post under my name. I recycle my oil with the local Pepboys, just 5 minutes walk from here.

    I have changed the cabin air and engine air filters myself to reduce the expenses using "quality" Toyota-branded filters. I have changed my tires to relatively long-life tires by Goodyear: Comfortred, again to reduce my landfill contribution, keeping the two best tires from the Integrity (1st set) series for when the Comfortreds are worn or in case of a blowout.

    Lastly, I changed my transmission fluid around 65K miles based on studies I read online about others analyzing their transmission fluid and finding the appropriate time to change it around 65K miles. Again, I used the Toyota WS-ATF (World Standard=WS) for the fluid change - and did it myself again. Of course I recycled it with the neighborhood Pepboys too.

    I do have a 100K mile extended warranty from Toyota, so I am still careful about what oils and fluids I use. I drive about 2K miles a month (24K/yr) and thus drive about 60% more miles every year than the "average" driver (15K/yr). It's much cheaper the way I maintaine and I believe I have the maintenance down to an art. I am still open to improvements if you hear of any!

    Thanks, Tony
  • You seem to be taking extensive steps to care for your car but I must admit surprise to your 10,000 mile durations between oil changes regardless of the use of synthetic fluids. Although most manufacturers recommend 3,000 to 5,000 miles intervals. I, on the other hand, follow my pappy's teachings. 5,000 miles and every other time the filter. To each his own. It just seems odd that you are so elaborate with so many duties and go to what I would call, extreem miles b/4 changing crankcase fluids. Enjoy your Prius and many miles of savings and green days ahead.
  • After owing the Prius for 13 months and having driven over 40,000 km I have to say this car has been a great car. Recently we took our second long trip with the car over 3000 km. with 2 adults, 2 larger teenagers and an 8 yr old. With the hatch back full of luggage including smaller cooler. After driving 2 days at 120 - 130 km/h and passing many other cars with cruise up and down hills we averaged 55 mpg! (acutal calculation). Also I am using Mobil 1 changing every 10,000 kms and this is only vehicle in 20 yrs of ownership where the oil is unbelievably clear after each change. Even my wife really enjoys riding and we both hate the days we need to take our second vehicle out (Ford Explorer). The CVT trans is so smooth a even that every time I am amazed at the technology. My only drawn back with this car for driving is the higher road/tire noisy present when driving down highways... but around town I don't think there is a better car anywhere!! :shades:
  • I have an 05 prius and I change my own oil . The "maint reqd" light comes on How do I get that to go off what do I do every oil change?
  • PFFlyer@EdmundsPFFlyer@Edmunds Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 5,807
    According to some Prius owners are reporting problems with unintended acceleration. Personally, I think something like this is either a result of stepping on a wrong pedal in a brief moment of stress/confusion, or related to an issue like the Toyota floor mat recall with a floor mat geting onto the accelerator. if your car suddnely makes a move you don't expect, I think a lot of folks might have a hard time thinking about a rational explanation instead of jumping to the conclusion that something must have been wrong with the car.

    But since this is a topic about long term Prius owners, this would be the place to ask if anyone has experienced this or knows someone who has.


    Moderator - Hatchbacks & Hybrid Vehicles

  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204 is a NOTORIOUSLY anti-hybrid site. I have complained to them for years that I can easily find anti-hybrid stories on their site and seldom anywhere else.

    Trust the validity of anything posted there on your own peril.
  • PFFlyer@EdmundsPFFlyer@Edmunds Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 5,807
    ...and claim of unintended acceleration would always seem, at least to me, to have a relatively simple explanation other than a "defect'.

    This isn't about pro/anti hybrid. just trying to get to the root of something that SOME Prius owners are bringing up.


    Moderator - Hatchbacks & Hybrid Vehicles

  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    I'm just saying - be careful spending any valuable time on issues you find on because they are a suspicious source of info.

    As you say, almost all historical instances of "self-acceleration" have been proven to be "driver error" and not a system problem on a vehicle.

    If there is an issue with the Prius accelerator system having a problem I would be highly surprised.

    As I would with ANY car accused of having a "system problem" which causes "unexplained acceleration."

    There was an issue in the past 3 years with a Civic hybrid owner who claimed this and it was proven to be a hoax (at least in my mind) with the intent of discrediting "hybrids" by saying that they "randomly accelerate on their VERY OWN!!!"

    I take all these reports with the required grain of salt until the day that scientific testing can reveal that any car can "randomly accelerate" on it's own.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,681
    Why would you accept the words of someone happy with their hybrid, and not the words of someone that is NOT happy with a hybrid?

    Consumer Affairs may be the only place besides the ODI that a person can complain about a problem with a hybrid. I have witnessed on this site many cases of people having a problem with a hybrid and their integrity was questioned.

    You have shown yourself to be much less tolerant of those that are not happy with their hybrids than those that are.

    Speaking of randomly accelerating. I drove a new Mercedes GL yesterday. I did not like the way the transmission downshifted when you let off the gas. And it was not very linear in its acceleration when you took off. It would surge with a slight touch of the accelerator. I don't think I would get used to that. So if it happens on $70k dollar vehicles it can happen on hybrids.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Gary says, "and not the words of someone that is NOT happy with a hybrid?"

    Here's a perfect explanation for that sentiment:

    If people are telling "the truth" and actually "stating something that is REALLY WRONG with the hybrids that is wrong BECAUSE IT IS A HYBRID" then I don't have a particular logical complaint with it. I might not like hearing it, and I will challenge them in the effort to get to the TRUTH and real cause of the problem - but if it is a REAL PROBLEM which is indeed caused by the hybrid technology in the car, then I will grudgingly accept that fact.

    The problem is this: those type of defects are FEW and far between.

    My problems with the complainers come about when many times people "blame" something which they perceive as a default in their car on the hybrid technology in the car, when in the REALITY in which I reside, there really is nothing wrong with car which is caused by the "hybrid technology" in their car at ALL.

    A firmware bug which needs to be re-programmed in any car is not a "hybrid issue" but a problem created by the person and the team which programmed the hardware in the first place. All modern cars have computers and those computers are programmed by humans, who sometimes, even after all the testing done before the cars are sent into production, miss a problem that only becomes known to them later.

    The Honda Insight, being a revolutionary car and a "testbed for hybrid cars in the general population" did have some "hybridization-related problem issues" which were caused by the very primitive hybrid system in that car - the "re-calc" issue. That's one of the only "hybrid problems which are caused by the fact that the car is a hybrid" that I have ever seen or heard of and KNOW FOR A FACT that it is a REAL PROBLEM which can in fact be blamed on hybridization.

    Many times owners will file a complaint and incorrectly in their own mind and in the complaint BLAME the problem on the hybridization of their car. Those people and their complaints DO cause me a problem, because they are putting a false black eye on hybrids when it is not deserved.

    Gary says, "Consumer Affairs may be the only place besides the ODI that a person can complain about a problem with a hybrid."

    Did you forget about the NHTSA complaint site?

    Gary says, "And it was not very linear in its acceleration when you took off. It would surge with a slight touch of the accelerator. I don't think I would get used to that. So if it happens on $70k dollar vehicles it can happen on hybrids."

    That's NOT the exact same sort of thing we are talking about with the Prius, at all. Slight surges due to downshifting would not be an issue in the Prius because of the CVT.
  • I have 66K on my '04 Prius and a neighbor,who drives some serious long hauls, has 87K and neither of us has had any of the above mentioned problems. By the way, while we're here...Isn't it nice to see that the '08 Prius looks just like my '04 Prius!! Makes me feel good to know that mine looks as good as a brand new '08.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,681
    Oh ye of short memory. The Prius had a VERY serious problem with stalling at very inopportune times. Toyota ignored the problem until the NHTSA (ODI) Office of Defects Investigation jumped on them. People posting here were called everything including liars. UNTIL, it was determined that yes there were some serious software issues with the Prius II.

    Why would you say that Consumer Affairs is any more biased than Consumer Reports? Is Consumer Affairs owned by the Big 3 like CR is owned by Toyota? Any entity that says anything negative about hybrids is a hack operation in your opinion. Now that mainstream media and car buyers in general are questioning the need for or the savings owning a hybrid you attack them also.

    I think people are just now seeing the light of day on this whole hybrid charade.

    By the way. Anyone looking for a hybrid in San Diego. Mossy Toyota has the largest inventory of Prius, I saw 13 on the lot. Plus they have a half dozen Camry Hybrids to chose from.
  • Whoa!! There Gary. Sounds like your spouting the same thing you so forth rightly detest. Inuendos seem to be thrown around from both sides on occasions. Like.."charades" & "light of day" etc. So...lets just be gracious and say "to each his own." By the way, I'm up to 67K and nary a problem with my Prius. I averaged 47 mpg and saved about $7,000.00 in les than 4 yrs. over a reg. car getting 14 mpg's. That, plus resale value seems to be running very high these days. Whats not to like?
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Gary says, "I think people are just now seeing the light of day on this whole hybrid charade."

    Thanks for the Friday morning laugh !!!! LOL !!! ROFLMTEO !!!
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    I'm not "short of memory" at all. I even mentioned the Prius software glitch in my post, in case you missed that. But that's not a "hybrid problem" that was a "programming problem" like I stated in the post.

    Gary says, "Why would you say that Consumer Affairs is any more biased than Consumer Reports?"

    Um, here are the reasons:

    1., whomever is the editorial staff there, had apparently been told to publish every single little "here's a hybrid owner who has a problem" story that they can find. If you search their site there are many many of those sort of articles. Any fair, balanced, pro-hybrid stories to balance out the issue? Very few. has an obvious and glaring anti-hybrid bias, and I know this for a fact because I have read almost all their hybrid articles and have sent them numerous "what's your problem?" e-mails and have NEVER ONCE gotten the respect of a response from them. I even filed a Consumer Complaint about THEM on their site !!
    2. Consumer Reports is not biased in any way, and I'm sorry that you are too "set in your ways" to see that. They do testing by REAL SCIENTISTS and they report problems based on REAL OWNERS who report the problems, and they use "large enough groups" to make a statistical difference. What I mean by that is that uses one owner here, one owner there, and then makes little snide comments in the stories which intimate that ALL hybrids must or so have these problems that this one owner in the story has.

    Gary says, "Now that mainstream media and car buyers in general are questioning the need for or the savings owning a hybrid you attack them also."

    What do you mean "NOW THAT" this is happening? IT HAS HAPPENED FROM DAY ONE with the hybrids - are you kidding me !! I have been here for the last three years trying to refute all the anti-hybrid garbage that gets put out. "Just now" is not an applicable term for people attacking hybrids and YOU KNOW THAT GARY.
  • I couldn't agree with you more. While enjoying ownership of this amazing car I wanted to shout it to the masses because its just that dang good. While in Vancouver Canada I was surprised to see countless "Yellow Prius's (taxi's). I asked the obvious question.."So what do you think of this Toyota Hybrid?" Every time the answer was unnanimous..."FANTASTIC" "IT SAVED MY JOB." Many of them had 200K plus miles on thir cars and were exstatic about the "no problem" car. Talk to anyone who owns one and you'll be hard pressed to find a complaint out there. As to the consumer watchguards..I seldom see negitive comments and yet I see "top ten" ratings from most. Look in the want-ads and see how many folks are parting with their hybrid Prius cars...not very many and when they do show up they're snapped up fast at very premium prices.
  • Me too. There are a couple of areas where very small changes would make big improvements (seating, sun visor -- the Vibe made by Toyota for GM has a sliding visor that worked GREAT!), but given the option, I'd buy mine again. Mileage is great, ride is smooth and quiet, and the quality is better than comparable cars in the same price range. I love my Prius and look forward to several more years of great service and huge savings over my friends driving standard vehicles.

    Besides, all that technology is just plain fun to drive!
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    I have heard from reputable sources the site is run by lawyers looking for consumer cases to exploit. They have appearantly been warned several times by your government to cease and desist, but so far they are still chasing lawsuits.

    Perhaps someone should look a little closer.
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