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Prius Owners w/50K - What We Think Now



  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 11,859
    as in HID and non HID?
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2014 Ford F-150 FX4
  • grandtotalgrandtotal Posts: 1,207
    Gripes: the back-up beeper (why is it on the inside?),

    Why don't you just disable it? The instructions to do so are all over the internet.
  • Actually I'm right at 95K and feeling pretty darn happy to own a car that has been the best thing since super glue & duct tape. I have great memories of many cars in my past but I also recall leaky oil pans, blown trannys, poor mileage, power windows that went bad, and blown motors. All of these things and a bunch of annoying quirks long before I had 60 K miles. The Prius should be the poster child for how to engineer, develope, & deliver the goods. There are those who say I'm a bit giddy and that may be true and why not? This is a remarkable car that does it better (overall) than any other car in my past (50 plus cars). Thank you Toyota!
  • I have a Toyota Sienna with 80K miles on it that still runs like new. My 17 year old daughter is driving now so we are going to get another car. She will drive the old van, primarily (sorry) and I will get a new car that I will drive mostly but she will drive occasionally. I need a reliable safe car and will be driving up to three kids to school which is about 30 minutes away. Is the Prius safe enough (it is so small) for teens to be driving and to put other people's children in? Or should I go with the CRV? How does the Prius do in the snow? Do you need snow tires in New England? Thanks so much.
  • My inlaws have an 07 Prius in Colorado. It gets parked at the first snow the car is so bad. I would not drive one in the snow.
  • I have an 04 Prius in Upstate New York and I'd rather drive it in the snow with Blizzaks than a top-heavy, flat-footed 4-wheel drive any day. (But if and when I finally do get stuck due to heavy snow drifts, I'll get a 4WD hybrid Highlander!!). The clearance is a problem, but the electric motor torque is fantastic for slowly pulling yourself out. Nothing beat the continuously variable transmission. AND I CAN TOW TOO! (not covered under warranty anymore).

    You'll feel the hit of less traction and slush on your MPG more than a vehicle that doesn't have a fuel-usage display because you see it all the dang time.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Others in CO and MN, NY, N England drive their Prius' all winter long without significant problems. Using snow tires is just common sense. I
  • I've never had a problem with my '04 Prius except I bought a new set of tires at 38k milez. I'll buy another Prius when this one hitz maybe 10 yeerz old.
    I've gotten 51.1 to 51.4 for the 50k; My frenz with Prius's only get ~47 mpg.

    When the CA EPA has ethanol put in the gasoline to cut cold weather polution--maybe 10 weeks a year or so, I can always tell 'cause my mileage drops to 46 to 49. (The CA EPA web site says the oil companiez can put up to 10% ethanol in the fuel if they feel like it. The ethanol refinerz must have overproduction with the recession; are they selling it to Big Oil at cut rates, and Big Oil iz putting the full 10% in my gas?)

    If I turn off the power quickly, half the time I turn on the wipers. I don't know the drill about the little 12v battery. To chek it requires a lot of opening of various doorz, starting with the hatchback. Itz 4 yeerz old, now, I guess I should replace it, altho its nevr given any troubl.

    The car bringz more road noise into the cabin than I'm used to. Its wind noise may be less than our '00 Camry.

    The plug in Prius coming out when, in '10, will drive around town on battery only for how many, about 120 milez? My '04 pollutes vastly less than what %, 96% of US carz? I wont get the plug in until my '04 startz gettin shabbyt. When will that be, after 150k milez?
  • grandtotalgrandtotal Posts: 1,207
    Dude, your spellchecker missed one. Tires is spelt tirez.
  • ;) That'z what I like......A journalizt with a zenze of humor! ;)
  • Dealer in Fla is pricing new Prius@$23,676 vs new Camry 5-spd manual@$14,495, big spread in pricing to ride in a "feel good" set of wheels. The differences in gas mileage should make the Prius payoff around 125k to 150k miles..

    The little skinny tires are scary and based the mileage of some owners, not too reliable..40# of air is a very hard tire and should result in a jarring ride, but it's all for bragging rights of 50mpg..

    The Prius is 100% foreign content so we have shipped the $$$$$$ overseas to help pay the retirement and health care of the Japanese workers..

    Our country club was looking for new golf carts, and the Pruis was mentioned, however they were too big, otherwise they looked pretty good..lots of gauges to read for such a runt of a car.

    Gas gauge, speedo, and tach is all one needs to enjoy stress free motoring and when the old battery goes, $100 buys another couple years..

    When gas gets to $5.00/gal, maybe it will pay to go the hybrid route, all electric will never work in the USA..

    Future gas pricing will be under the control of our taxing authorities and their goal is to emulate Europe with $6.00/gal worth of taxes to pay for the giveaway programs. Europe averages 10% unemployment so taxes are needed for those left working must support the idle bodies..

    I enjoyed reading all the hype of the Prius owners and expected to hear all the praise for some owners paid big-time pricing to join the club..Our Fla toy dealer has 15 new ones to sell..Yes I have a Toy plus 09 Bullitt and a 06 S/C 06 Pontiac in the garage..big carbon footprint, however please keep driving your hybrid for I need the all the high-test non-ethanol gas I can find.. Thanks again, and remember what our President-elect stated on the campaign trail---check your tire pressure and help America break it's reliance on foreign oil...Wow
  • How to respond to the comments you so elliquantly presented. Hmmmm, Lets see. "Runt of a car," How do you come by that claim when everyone knows that the Prius is a 5 passenger "Intermediate" size car. Your political perspective says alot about your frustration in what to buy. American or Foreign hmmmm. How about a car that delivers reliable and frugal driving experience? I'm closing in on 100K in an '04 Prius with what I believe you called "skinny" tires that are "not too reliable." The car delivers very well as do the o.e.m. tires. Close to 56 K miles b/4 replacment. I'm not sure as to your motive in sarcasm about Prius pricing but when I took the Hybrid plunge in '03 my Prius went for $21, 456.00 out the door. I've saved(conservatively speaking) over $10,000.00 in gas money. I can't recall, of the 50 plus cars I've owned, any car that was as trouble-free as the Prius.
    As to Obama's comments all I can say is there are a number of ways to be a smart & frugal driver. Tire pressure is just one. As to buying any car...I'm going for the car that delivers all the above mentioned selling points that the Prius so faithfully delivers on. Gas prices will fluctuate and may rise again to painfull levels. My Prius will continue to make that pain less difficult to deal with. 546 miles on one tank of gas in my Prius sez so.
  • I have to say that living in Upstate NY (and I mean upstate as in 30 miles from Montreal CA border) I have had no real problems with my 06 Prius, I did buy snow tires because it was a bit like driving a ski with the factory tires but those tires are fine in regular conditions. I get approx 45 mpg in the winter, probably decreased because of the heater and slush, etc but overall I cant complain. I also have almost 100k miles on my Prius and have had no problems except the headlamp issue that I have discussed on here already.... :)
  • rick294rick294 Posts: 77
    "Our President elect..." That pretender to the throne? With any luck, he will soon get bounced out due to faking his place of birth. He doesn't want to drill our own considerable resources, but rather keep his Muslim 'friends' happy with our permanent dependence on their supplies. Runt of a car? Just go buy whatever rings your chimes and leave off the pointless, inaccurate comments about one of the most interesting and innovative cars in history.
  • dmathews3dmathews3 Posts: 1,739
    Leaving out your commie comments would be nice too. :P
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 7,770
    Let's stick to discussing the cars please.

    Move on

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  • Have 54k miles and couldn't be happier. I have an '04 and its been the most reliable car I've owned.
  • I find it very interesting to read all the great gas mileage that folks are receiving. It would be nice if they informed everyone to which State they live in. Our 06’ is outstanding for performance and reliability. The only main beef I have is: tires!
    You receive great mileage with the “OEM” tire. When you go to replace them, they are not available at a price comparable to other times. In fact: after going to over 30 Goodyear Tire Dealers, (0) could supply us with the “OEM” Tire. They all informed me that this tire was for the Dealers. The states I ask for Tires; CA, AZ, NM, CO, OH, PA, NY, NC, FL, TX & IN. I also stopped into dealerships in all of those states. None of them had an “OEM” replacement tire, unless they removed it from a New Factory Auto.
    Tire pressure is important for the extra mileage. I have found that the Goodyear Tire that fits (All season) hold to the road and are great in the winter; only deliver 43 to 46 mpg. Not bad. Please: none of this 50mpg that folks seem to throw around.
    I am sure there will be comments about this post. Please, if you want bragging rights, then, provide more information about how you obtain such wizardry with your Prius and where you live to gain this great advantage. We all want to know. If not then post something that is of use to all.
  • I tend to agree that there are a few posts that seem to be exaggerated and that being said lets see if a few points can be explained.
    First, where you live surely effects one's milage. I live in N.W. Indiana where in summer I usually average between 45 and 49 mpg's. Come winter when the "ICE" runs considerably more due to cold & freezing temps my mileage drops to an area of 34 and 43 mpg's. Blends of winter fuel really do effect milage considerably. As to my driving technics, in the early years of ownership I strove to attain high milage marks. Unfortunately, I got lazy and lost my desire to be intense in that area and decided to consentrate more on just driving safe. Prius owners (when honest) can get carried away with achieveing high "mpg's." Likewise they also can exaggerate those stats.
    The many blogs that have filled this post have shown that the Prius is quite a hybrid car but not without it's nay-sayers. Fortunitly the Prius has stood the tests of criticism. After all, Car & Driver, Motor Trend and the like can't be wrong and thousands of satisfied owners say it all.
    As to tires, I would only add that quality tires make for a better all around vehicle. Michelins are my preference.
  • rick294rick294 Posts: 77
    The OEM tires on our 08 Prius are the exact make, size and model of tires that came as original equipment on our 05 Corolla - the Goodyear (suddenly I can't remember the name). Integrity?? Anyway, we had replaced those orignal tires on the Corolla once they wore out (about 45k) and replaced them with Michelin HydroEdge tires purchased through Costco. They have an 800 treadwear rating (highest I've ever seen) while the Goodyears had, I believe, a 460 rating. When we sold the Corolla and bought the Prius, we had the dealer switch the new Goodyears off and put on the Michelins. The Michelins are far superior and I've never regretted having them put on our Prius. The HydroEdge is also a very low-rolling resistance tire. We love 'em. Forget the OEM tires - like Railroad James, get the Michelins.
  • Just checked the price of both batteries for '04 Prius Small Battery..$ 152.57.....Large Battery..$ 2,588.00 This was quoted at my local dealer..Lake-shore Toyota in Burns Harbor, IN today. I'm prepairing for eventually replacement of the small battery since it is closing in on 6 yrs. and nearly 100K miles in my trouble free hybrid. What's not to like? ;)
  • 6 -1/2 yrears and 105K plus miles and she still runs like a new car. I thought about trading this month but ..then again...Why?? I just want to see where this '04 hybrid can take me. 200K?....or maybe even 250K? Time will tell. One more thing. I like owning an '04 that looks just like an '09. Then again....It looks a heck of alot like even the 3RD Generation Prius. Life is good in Prius-Land. ;)
  • rick294rick294 Posts: 77
    Yes it is! Especially when the Prius is in Barcelona Red! :-)
  • stevegoldstevegold Posts: 185
    When and if you ever need to replace the large battery, go to eBay where batteries from wrecked cars can be found for from $300 to $1,000. You would choose from a low mileage 2009 or 2008 rather than a high mileage 2004 if possible. There are also remanufactured batteries available. I wouldn't worry unless you are the first owner with a problem.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Yes precisely.

    At 129,000 miles on my 05 I just replaced the small 12v battery since it was getting weak. If however I had to replace the traction battery at say 205,000 miles..or 305,000 miles then I'd go to our body shop and put in an order for the next totalled Prius ( front end totalled ) and try to buy the battery from the insurance company for $400 or so.
  • I don't have too many miles on my 2004 (just72k). It is an amazing vehicle!!! Much more reliable than the VWs and Mercedes I've owned. No unscheduled maint in six years and just oil changes and tires. I'm still on the original brake pads and from what I read, I can expect over 100,000 miles. I had an Audi (VW same junk) that needed brakes after 12,000 miles!!! This was suburban/highway driving. I am SO glad I got rid of it before it wiped out my savings!!!
  • stevegoldstevegold Posts: 185
    Almost the same story with my 2004. The only difference is I had an October '03 mfg date and did have about a half dozen TSB's that had to be fixed by my Toyota dealer at no cost but some inconvienience to me.
  • There are 2 major repairs that had to be done on the car, both of which the check engine light turned on. At about 120K, a coolant sensor valve malfunctioned and at 150k, the engine coolant pump just quit. Both needed replacement at a cost of over $500 each. The labor charges in each bill totalled more than $350. A serious DIY'er could have replaced the parts and same all those $$$ in labor charges. The only problem is getting a dealer to interpret correctly the OBD code. An aftermarket code reader(which I have) always gave me a different interpretation of the OBD code.
    In both situation, I was able to drive the car back to my house and then to the dealer for repair.
    Also at 120K miles, a routine check on my rear brake shoes showed less than 1mm left on the linings. I was lucky to catch it in time to have it replaced and the drum re-surfaced. Since I did the replacement myself and using Toyota OEM parts, it cost me about $75 only. The original front disk pads still showed 50% wear.
    Right now at 155k miles, the shifter lever gets stuck at D or R. The dealer is again asking over $500 to replaced it. Shifter assy cost over $360. A trip to a local Prius dismantling yard cost $50. The car still drivable and the shifter problem is just a minor inconvenience.
    No perceived problems with the batteries (aux and main) after almost 6 years. Twice I have to go on a 3 weeks vacation and upon my return, the Prius still started normally. Should any off the batteries go dead, I will go to my local Prius yard for a replacement and save big $$$$. If I get a new one, I don't think I will still use my Prius for another 6 more years..
    I am on my thrid set of tires. I am satisfied with the Goodyear Comfort Thread tires that I've used after the original Goodyear Integrity tires. It's quiet and has good road handling. Alignment still not an issue on this car.
    Lastly, my mileage? Still about the same as when I got it brand new.
  • I think my manufacture date is close to yours since I picked mine up at the beginning of November 2003. I had the same TSBs you mentioned addressed at one visit. I waited two years as I didn't want to make multiple visits to the dealer. Went for an oil change there and said to address any TSBs that were in effect. They even gave me a new NAV disc as the one that came with the vehicle had some issues with inaccuracies. I'm extremely pleased with the level of service I get at the dealer too. Not all Toyota dealers are bad, but I have heard some horror stories. Heck, I even had some terrible stories with a Lexus dealer but that's for a different message board. Good luck with yours!! We ought to keep posting out experiences every 15k miles or so. I participate on a dedicated Prius forum that provides a great deal of user feedback.
  • Thanks for the fine writeup. I find it interesting that the rear brakes went first. I guess due to the regenerative braking the wear is different front/rear. Good that you are a DIYer. I have two left hands and can't function as a Sunday mechanic. There are a few shops around here that are independent and specialize in hybrid repairs. Much cheaper than Toyota. I hope I have a few more years before I get acquainted with them. When I owned my Audi and VW I already knew the service managers before 10,000 miles. That's why I own a Prius.
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