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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
5 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
52,130 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2006 Toyota Prius lights problems

lights problem

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2006 Toyota Prius Owner Comments (Page 21 of 40)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #384

Aug 072009


  • 48,300 miles


My 2006 Toyota Prius experiences problems with its drivers-side hid headlight. It is very expensive to replace this ($299 at the Toyota dealer). Investigating this on the internet turned up hundreds of posts about the same exact issue, often on the 2006 model year Toyota Prius. The light randomly turns on and off - which is a major safety issue, not to mention the expense of getting it replaced. We were not even aware of the problem until we were stopped by the police and given a warning to get the headlight replaced. With so many other owners of the Toyota Prius having the exact same issue, I wonder why Toyota is not issuing a recall. To add insult to injury, the dealer was not even sure if the problem was with the headlight or with the "computer" that controlled it. I was told today that they would first replace the headlight (for $299) and if that did not resolve the problem, they would have to replace the computer for an as-yet undisclosed cost. Please investigate this and urge Toyota to recall the headlights and/or the "computers". thanks mohan

- Ashburn, VA, USA

problem #383

Aug 232009


  • 96,000 miles
I own a 2006 Toyota Prius with hid headlights. Over the last month, or so, the driver's side light goes out while I'm driving. The only fix I've found is to turn the lights off, then on again. The lights will then remain on for approx. 10-20 minutes, at which time the same light goes out again. The problem seems to be happening more often as time passes and the time the problem repeats itself is getting shorter. I tried to have the dealer look at it, under warranty, but was told that they would charge me a $100 "inspection fee." Since then, I've heard of many other Prius owners that experience the same problem. I believe this is a safety recall issue that needs to be addressed by Toyota and/or NHTSA.

- Highland, CA, USA

problem #382

Aug 112009


  • 27,700 miles
2006 Toyota Prius headlight began intermittently failing 3 days after my 36-mo. Warranty ended. Rate of failure steadily increasing. Car had under 28K miles at time of first failure. Online research shows me that this is a widespread safety and design problem that Toyota generally ignores and expects the consumer to pay outrageous sums to repair. I am about to report my problem to Toyota, but wanted first to add my voice to the hundreds of others complaining to the NHTSA., in the hope that Toyota will be forced to do a recall to fix this dangerous safety problem in its cars.

- Palo Alto, CA, USA

problem #381

Sep 192009


  • 45,000 miles


I own a 2006 Toyota Prius...both head lights go out while driving at night. Sometimes one goes out, then the other goes out, and then sometimes both go out. I have to turn the switch off then back on to reset the lights. Sometimes the lights would flicker, then extinguish completely. Sometimes I don't know they are extinguished until I come up on another car. This is an extremely dangerous situation, I notice this is a problem on many Prius'. please take this situation seriously before someone is killed! thank you.

- Port Orchard, WA, USA

problem #380

Sep 192009


  • 37,000 miles
The driver's side headlight simply goes out. This started after approximately 37,000 miles. The headlight was replaced under warranty once and now it is happening again. Once while on vacation in New Mexico on a two lane road at night it happened and when I turned off and on the headlights, both lights remained out. I stopped and was very close to the edge of the road and switched the headlights on and off again and they came back on. This was a very scary incident. I'm tired of going to the dealership and having them propose solutions that cost from hundreds to over a thousand dollars to resolve. Within the past month, I have been stopped by a state trooper because of the headlight being out. When I explained the situation, cycled the headlights off then on, he saw that both headlights came on and gave me a verbal warning instead of a citation. This is a hazard that is well known, but Toyota chooses not to deal with it. That attitude and situation needs to be resolved before people get hurt. Below, I'm providing today?S date because it is constant and ongoing.

- Gleneden Beach, OR, USA

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problem #379

Sep 012009


  • 45,000 miles
When the headlights are turned on, the left headlight on my 06 Prius is randomly flickering, or turning off, or turning on. The failure occurs frequently, and unpredictably. The right headlight is not exhibiting those symptoms now, but I'm concerned that I could find myself driving down the road at night and have both headlights turn off. I am taking the car to the dealer to get this repaired tomorrow. I got the dealer to provide the replacement bulb for free, but I will have to pay for a couple of hours of labor. You already have a report on this that you closed, NHTSA action number PE09019. I don't think that report should be closed, and Toyota should do a voluntary recall to fix what is clearly a design problem. Thanks!

- Belmont, CA, USA

problem #378

Jan 132007


  • 12,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Prius. He stated that intermittently the headlights failed. Occasionally, he was able to immediately turn them back on; however, an impairment of visibility while driving increased the risk of a vehicle crash. He was advised by an authorized technician that the failure is common among his model type. The vehicle has not been inspected to determine the cause of the failure nor has the vehicle been repaired. The vehicles identification number was unavailable. The failure mileage was 12000. The current mileage was 46000.

- Knox, PA, USA

problem #377

Sep 172009


  • 30,000 miles
Re: 2006 Toyota - Prius both head lights go out while driving at night. Sometimes one goes out, then the other goes out, and then sometimes both go out. I have to toggle the switch to reset the lights. Sometimes the lights would flicker, then extinguish completely. This is a high risk driving situation, especially when driving at highway speeds & I encounter curves in the road.

- Hopewell Junction, NY, USA

problem #376

Apr 102009


  • 40,000 miles
Intermittent failure of hid headlights on my 2006 Prius, beginning spring 2009. This problem is unexplainable - the bulb is not burned out but only works sometimes. This is a safety hazard at night. First happened on passenger side. Had Toyota dealer replace the bulb, which seems to have solved the problem on that side. But same problem began on driver's side shortly after passenger side was fixed. I have read that other Prius owners have experienced same problem, indicating a manufacturing defect.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #375

Aug 012009


  • miles
I own a 2006 Prius and I have been noticing my hid lamps randomly flicker off these past few weeks. The failure occurs everytime I turn on my headlights. I have not done anything to correct the failure yet but am going to go to my dealership to get it looked at.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #374

May 072009


  • 58,400 miles


My Toyota Prius has developed headlight problems that can't be permanently fixed without costly work. The headlights turn off intermittently for no reason. It usually can be rectified by turning off the lights and turning them back on. However, this has had some serious consequences. In one case an oncoming car thought my vehicle was a motorcycle nearly clipping my car. I was furious and the driver stopped to explain. I didn't even know my left headlight was off. In another case I was distracted by the light problem and turning off and on the lights that I nearly drove through a red light. This is very dangerous and it's left me without any sense of security that my lights are working or when they might fail again. It's a sporadic problem that happens with both headlights, usually one at a time. In the past month it's occurred at least once every night that one or the other light has turned off. At times I don't even know it's off.

- Irvine, CA, USA

problem #373

Sep 062009


  • miles
My 2006 Toyota Prius right hid headlight has failed and I bought a replacement from Toyota for $162, I will attempt to replace it myself. This is the second lamp failure on this car, the first was the left which Toyota paid for ($740). $700 for a headlight is outrageous!!!

- Valencis, CA, USA

problem #372

Jun 012009


  • 40,000 miles
Both hid head lights on Prius 2006 fail intermittently after only 40,000 miles. Toyota is refusing to replace them, even though they can fail without warning during night. It is just a mater of time before someone is killed.

- Pacific Palisades, CA, USA

problem #371

Sep 012009


  • 51,000 miles
Headlight is intermittent. Possible faulty ECU board.

- Valley Village, CA, USA

problem #370

Jan 122009


  • 46,143 miles
Hid headlamp(s) failure of my 2006 Prius. One (1) lamp can be intermittent (off & on) without driver being aware of it, but when both of them go out you are immediately in the dark and that's what happened to me. Total outage only happened one (1) time, then the dealer replaced the bulbs. The car had 45,000 miles on it at the time.

- Campbellsville, KY, USA

problem #369

Jul 032008


  • 16,000 miles
I have a 2006 Toyota Prius with hid headlights. The right lamp started shutting down without warning when the car was about 18 months old and 16,000 miles. Then in a few weeks, the left lamp started doing the same. Through out a typical week, the right lamp shut down about once very 3 times I drove it. The left lamp would shut down about once every 5 to 6 times I drove it. Both lamps could shut down in any single trip. I took it to the dealer and they would not fix it unless it failed in their shop. I said that it could sit there for a day or two before either one of them shut down. About 3 hours later, the right lamp shut down.....they fixed it no charge (it was under the normal 36/36 warranty....but said it would not be fixed under the extended warranty - which I bought for about $1000 when I bought the car). I asked about the "failing" left lamp and they said it too had to fail. I asked what if it failed the next evening (Sunday).....they said that I should pull over and call them.....which was not possible as they are closed after their normal hours and do not take calls. Well, the left lamp did shut down again within the week. I pulled over and took a picture of the left lamp out and the right one on. Since then, the left lamp goes out nearly every time I drive the car and headlights on. This is most of the time, as I always drive with my lights on for conspicuity and safety (have done this for over 35 years in all cars that I drive). I essentially do not drive this car now until I get the left lamp fixed....and I will not pay the $460 that the dealer wants to charge. This is a design defect and a significant safety problem with these cars. Toyota must take accountability and fix this problem at their cost. You cannot have a safety component/sub-system fail without warning.....on this many cars (many, many reports). I solicit NHTSA's support in forcing Toyota to schedule a safety recall for these vehicles. I want all of us to drive safely.

- Fort Wayne, IN, USA

problem #368

Jul 102009


  • 35,000 miles
My Toyota Prius 06 had issues with the hid headlights. They started to flicker off at about 35,000 miles until eventually, they stopped working entirely. The warranty covered the replacement of the bulbs and so I was satisfied. Unfortunately, the issue has surfaced again, this time I'm at 57,000 miles and only 1 year and 6 months later. Now they are saying the warranty is up and I need to pay almost $1,000 dollars to fix this problem. Details of issue: The lights would flicker and dim, then eventually produce no light. It happened on both sides left and right the first time. Switching them off then on would make them work again at first, but eventually, that did not work. The second time, it is happening on my passenger side headlight. Same exact issue.

- Torrance, CA, USA

problem #367

Jul 142009


  • 45,000 miles
I've got a package 6 2006 Prius. The headlights keeps going out. Sometimes its just the passenger side and sometimes both. I can't really tell when or how it goes out. If I turn the bright lights on and off it has no effect, but when I turn them all the way off and back on the light comes back. Sometimes on long trips it will stay on the whole time, sometimes it won't. sometimes on short trips it will go out, sometimes it won't. the problem with intermittent hid headlight operation appears to be common with the Prius.

- Royal Palm Beach, FL, USA

problem #366

Feb 062008


  • 40,000 miles
I own a 2006 Prius- the headlights do not function properly. While driving in the dark (and day) either the right or left headlight turns off. This is so unsafe. First the dealer explains there are some issues with other customers; then they admit there are many issues. When searching online I come to release there is a big issue. To date Toyota has not recalled this safety issue.

- Schuylerville, NY, USA

problem #365

Jan 012009


  • 40,000 miles
My 2006 Toyota Prius with hid lights has a serious safety issue in that at any point while I am driving, one or both of the headlights will flicker, dim, and eventually turn off. The only way that I can get the headlights back on is to turn the headlight switch all the way off, then turn it back on again, causing my car to be without headlights for at least two seconds each time I must do this. At times, it is difficult to notice that one light has gone out, and on multiple occasions, I have found myself driving without any headlights as they have both turned off due to this electrical/bulb failure. I am very afraid of driving at night, as at least one headlight, if not both, will turn off about every thirty seconds. It is very dangerous for the headlights to turn off without any warning. I have contacted Toyota and they claim that bulbs are not covered under warranty, so they will not pay to fix the problem. The dealership has quoted me at $1,500 to replace the bulbs and computer ECU unit, which is an exorbitant amount to pay for something that is clearly defective and very dangerous.

- West Covina, CA, USA

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