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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 39 of 40)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #24

May 012008


  • 56,000 miles


2006 Toyota Prius headlight problem... passenger light comes on initially then fades out and turns off. Resetting the switch turns the light back on only to repeat the process!!! bottomline, the headlight will not stay on!

- Reno, NV, USA

problem #23

Jun 222008


  • 42,000 miles
Driver hid headlamp works then does not work. You can turn off the light and back on and it will work. Then sometimes behind a car or in a reflection I will see the headlamp working or not working. People on are mentioning this is a common problem on a 2006 Prius. If this is a defect then I should not have to pay $500 or more per headlight to fix. I am going to the dealer on Wednesday.

- Purcellville, VA, USA

problem #22

May 012007


  • 44,500 miles
Driver's side headlight doesn't work every other time they are turned on. Also sometimes stop working.

- Calabasas, CA, USA

problem #21

Apr 012008


  • 40,000 miles


Hid headlights go out and lights will work again when turned off and back on. Then they will go out again for no apparent reason and work when turned off and on again.

- Dallas, TX, USA

problem #20

May 242008


  • 39,000 miles
Hid headlights started failing intermittently at 39,000 miles. Both lights will spontaneously go out (sometimes at the same time, sometimes one at a time). Turning the light switch off and on will make them go on again for a while. Talked to a dealership service manager; he stated he does not think it's the bulbs but bring it in and they will try to diagnose it and will charge a diagnostic fee. Also, it has to be malfunctioning at the time for them to figure out the problem. Contacted a "customer experience" representative and was assigned a case #. she stated she knew of the hid failures, she states that it is normal "wear & tear" but that Toyota will "help" me with the expense. She would not specify what that means, except that they will not pay for all of the repairs. However, they will reimburse me for a rental car. What has previously been a reliable car is now dangerous at night. In fact, the first time I noticed the problem was when both lights failed as I was driving down the freeway in the middle of the night!

- Cobb, CA, USA

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problem #19

Jun 092006

Prius 4-cyl

  • 37,701 miles
Intermittent functioning of driver's side headlight on 2006 Prius after 37,000 miles. Dealer/service says it needs to be replaced and will cost $420 for the one light. I expect that the other will follow suit and I'll be out another $420 soon. This is a ridiculous amount to have to pay for a headlight, and not getting it fixed is, obviously, illegal and a safety hazard. Since it is near impossible to replace oneself, they seem to have "cornered the market" and can thus charge whatever they like.

- Milford, DE, USA

problem #18

Jan 152008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 36,000 miles


In January of this year, the driver side headlamp on our 2006 Prius began shutting off after a few minutes of operation. It would come back on if the switch is cycled but would then shut off again at what appeared to be a random interval. The dealer replaced the lamp under warranty in January. Now the passenger side is doing the same thing. After several visits to the dealer, we were told that this is a "known problem" but it is not being covered by Toyota nor under our extended warranty. The price to replace the headlamp is in excess of $700! this is a known defect with significant safety implications. The dealer tells us it affects 2006+ Prius headlamps.

- The Woodlands, TX, USA

problem #17

May 162008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 45,000 miles
It began with the driver side headlight going out every once in a while... the dealership didn't believe us since when we brought the car in, it was working. We still dealt with the problem and found that by turning the lights off and then back on that both lights would then work for a period. It's a bit daunting to do this in the night when it is dark and you are driving and have to turn off your lights to get them to work. After the police issued us a citation for the light not working, we had to pay for the Toyota dealership to 'diagnose' the problem. $1000 dollars later we have a new ECU and a new driverside headlight. The very next day, the passenger headlight went out and is doing the same thing. We are back to turning the lights off to get them both 'on.' The dealership says it's not covered under warranty and we have to pay another 400 dollars for the passenger side light. There is something very wrong and very dangerous with this situation. This is a 2006 Prius and these headlights are supposed to be long-lasting. Toyota does not seem willing to help out and customers are paying the price. This is a serious safety issue that Toyota needs to acknowledge and deal with.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #16

May 302008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 45,000 miles
The driver side headlight on our 2006 Prius has been intermittently working since June 2007. Taking it in to the Toyota dealership in va where we purchased the car, we were told that since it happened to be working at that time, there was nothing that can be done. Since moving to North Carolina in July 2007, this problem has gotten worse. A dealership here, told my husband and I the same thing - that the headlight was on when we brought it in so they assumed it was fine. After being pulled over by the police in early May 2008 because our headlight was out, we brought the car back to the Toyota dealership. We were told by the police that this is a major safety issue and we needed to get it repaired immediately. This time, after paying nearly $100 for the problem to be diagnosed at the Toyota dealership, we spent almost $500 for the replacement of the computer (ECU)and were told the headlight would now work. The next day the headlight went out again. We brought it back in and were told that because of something having to do with the heat caused by the ECU that had been replaced, our headlight had now fully blown out and we would have to pay almost $400 for a new hid light. We paid, got a new driver side headlight, and went home. The very next morning (5/30/08), the passenger side headlight went out. There seems to be something very wrong with the headlights on this vehicle. There are pages and pages online of discussions of 2006 Prius owners who have the exact same problem with their headlights. This is a major safety concern, and it is illegal to drive with headlights out! I don't understand why Toyota is not standing behind it's vehicles and keeping it's customers safe. There is surely a defect in the design. These lights are supposed to last up to eight years... but ours have not made it even three years. We are becoming very frustrated with the service we have received and with the lack of support by Toyota in helping us with this.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #15

Aug 012007

Prius 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
My driver side headlight would intermittently turn off. This occurred almost everytime I turned it on and by the time I got to destination (it would be off). Turning headlight off and then back on would work only temporarily, until I drove further and notice it off again based on reflection from car in front of me. The igniter assembly was replaced by dealer yesterday, but problem still exist. Car is currently at the dealer again for further diagnosis.

- Alameda, CA, USA

problem #14

Jan 052008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 44,000 miles


I have a Toyota 2006 Prius that the hid headlights fail after a variable amount of time. Failure varies from just one light (both passenger and driver side show symptom) to both lights failing at the same time. Current solution is to turn lights completely off and turn them back on. This solves the problem temporarily although the light(s) will eventually go out again. So far I have not crashed into anything once my headlight(s) fail but that is obviously a concern I now have when driving at night. Current repair recommendation is to replace both bulbs and cost for ~$1000. The car is just over 2 years old and has 44,000 miles on it.

- Dale City, VA, USA

problem #13

Jan 012008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 38,000 miles
I have a 2006 Prius with hid headlights which will not stay on. When I am driving, one, or both, of my headlights will go out. I will notice this when I'm at a stop and I look for the reflection of my lights in the car in front of me, or when I get home and I look to see if both headlights are shining on my garage door. If I turn the lights off and then right back on again, the headlights come back on. I have googled this and many other Prius owners are having the same problem. My independent mechanic said that Toyota is not even selling a headlight for my VIN number. I took my car to the dealer I purchased it from and they are telling me that to replace the headlights will cost $1,050 and if the ecus which control the headlights are bad, they will cost an additional $650. I said that I felt this was a safety issue that Toyota should pay for. They offered me half off the cost of the parts, but want me to commit to paying all the labor. I am going to go pick up my car from the dealer and plan on filing a complaint with Toyota usa. I think a problem like this with a car less than two years old should not be my responsibility to pay for.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #12

Aug 202007


  • 38,000 miles
Headlight failure on 2006 Toyota Prius. Car was taken to the dealer with approximately 38,000 miles and the dealer beat on the headlight unit and advised me that it now worked. As the months have gone by, both headlight have been shutting down at separate times and by turning the lights on and off the headlights return to normal. The dealer now advises me that he "thinks" the bulbs need to be replaced at a cost of about $400 each. I see on the internet that this is a very common problem on the 2006 Prius and Toyota has done nothing to protect the owners from this potentially life threatening issue. I believe it is mandatory that Toyota make a recall of all 2006 Prius models asap to repair this problem before serious injury or loss of life is caused by losing these lights during both night driving and day driving when used as an effective means of letting other drivers see your position.

- La Verne, CA, USA

problem #11

Jun 012007

Prius 4-cyl

  • 30,000 miles
In June of 2007 I had my head light replace in my 2006 Toyota Prius. I would be driving and it would randomly go off and on. Warranty covered the cost. It is April of 2008 and both headlights are going on and off again. At first the right one was randomly on and off and now both right and left, again are on an off and on occasion I will be driving down the road and both go off. This is not a light bulb problem. It was diagnosed as an electronic problem with the wiring behind the light. My car is only 2 years old and should not be having electronic problems, head lights flickering on and off. Mechanicsville Toyota fixed the first electronic problem with warranty. Now no one wants to hear my problem and I believe this is happening to others.

- Tappahannock, VA, USA

problem #10

Jan 042008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 39,000 miles
My 2006 Toyota Prius intermittently loses one or both of the hid headlights. Turning off the lights, and back on, will usually bring both of the lights back on... for a little while. This has caused me to have one 'near-miss' accident when going around a curve, in unfamiliar areas. Both of the headlights failed within a few tenths of a second, helping me to run off of the road. No damage was done to the car, but it was a very frightening experience, that I don't want to repeat. It seems apparent from the this site, that it is a wide-spread problem that Toyota does not want to admit to. Even my Toyota brand platinum warranty doesn't cover this, since they say that 'light' bulbs are an 'expendable' item... they meant 'expensive' item... that they do not want to pay for. My local dealer states that they want to 'troubleshoot' it for a few hours at about $90/hr... then 'probably' check the bulbs, at 1.5 hours/each, since they say the front bumper must be removed to remove/replace the lights. Then, order the bulbs at $359/each, and a week or so later (after they order the bulbs/receive them), install them for about 1.5hours/each. This is totaling well over $1000 for a car only about 15.5 months old, and just barely out of warranty (at the time about 39,000 miles). With all of the complaints established on this site, as well as the dealership(s) records of 'troubleshooting' and /or repair efforts, Toyota needs to be forced into a recall for repairs to this safety related problem that they are currently choosing to ignore. I have requested to speak to a regional Toyota service representative, but those efforts were apparently ignored, since several months have elapsed, without any contact.

- Calvert City, KY, USA

problem #9

May 152008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 59,000 miles
2006 Toyota Prius with hd headlights. Either headlight will go out on what seems to be a random basis. Does not seem to be related to the amount of time the headlight was on - could be a few minutes before it goes out or a few hours. When car is turned off and then restarted the headlight will come on again for an indeterminate amount of time. It is not predictable. This is an obvious safety problem and an internet search shows that it is not uncommon in this make and model. Others with the problem have had various repairs - all very expensive - with uneven results. The dealers do not seem to have a definite fix - just to change parts to see if that helps. Although I will indicate an approximate incident date below, it is not really accurate since this has happened with my car at multiple random times within the past four weeks.

- Columbia, MD, USA

problem #8

May 102008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 32,000 miles
The headlights on my car go out intermittently without warning. Sometimes it is only one. Sometimes it is both.

- Sutherlin, OR, USA

problem #7

Jan 012008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 40,000 miles
Both headlights on my 2006 Prius go out intermittently (not necessarily simultaneously). Began noticing this about 5-6 months ago. Shutting lights all the way off and then on again usually brings the light(s) back on, but not always and they don't always stay on. This occurs almost every time I drive the vehicle. I mentioned it to my dealer at my last oil change and they advised they could find nothing wrong (bring it back in when it's happening)... it had just happened on the way over to the dealer, but shutting lights off and on brought it back on.

- Glen Rock, , PA, USA

problem #6

Jan 022008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 35,000 miles
I own a 2006 Toyota Prius. My right headlight will randomly shut off. I am able to turn my lights off/on and the light will restart. There is no initiation factor such as bump or movement. There is a random time frame for this to occur. I can be sitting still prior to moving the car and the light will go out. This has first happened 4months ago and continues to happen. The problem seems to be occurring more frequently and could pose a serious safety issue. So far, only the right headlight has gone out, however, I am concern this may happen to both. I will be scheduling a service repair at my local dealership asap.

- Pikeville, KY, USA

problem #5

Mar 012008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
Headlight started to fail around 50,000 miles; right would turn off. Not to long after left would turn off but right remain on. Turning lights off, then back on would turn light back on. Was not happening enough for dealership to track. Around 60,000 mile happening more frequently. Both lights would also dim and sometimes turn completely off; turning light switch off, then back on made lights return on. Sometimes if lights turned off and you attempted to turn on brights, brights would not come on. Dealer suggested it was either a headlight that needed to be replaced or a 'headlight control' but needed to check it further. 70,000 lights turning off frequently; left and right, sometimes same time, sometimes individually. Headlight control replaced by dealer. Continues to do same thing; not resolved. Have not taken back to dealer yet.

- Santa Clarra, UT, USA

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