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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 7 of 40)

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problem #664

Feb 012011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles


One of our hid headlamps turns off intermittently. Sometimes it is off, and sometimes it is on, no way to predict. We had the light bulb replaced by our local mechanic with an after-market product, but the problem persisted. So we went to the dealer, who also replaced the light bulb (much more expensively), but it still turned off whenever. Now the intermittent turn-off has started to occur on the other side. So far they have not both been out at the same time, but if that happened, it would be a real safety issue. The dealer service department doesn't seem to know why it is doing this, and can only suggest that we replace the lightbulb again. It is not an acceptable solution to us to keep replacing $150-$300 lightbulbs. We need to know the underlying cause of the problem, whether it is in the headlamp assembly, or some other part that controls the light. In summary, a product that fails intermittently, even after being replaced has a defect that needs to be investigated. And also, the dealer/maker should know why this is happening and do something about it.

- Sterling, VA, USA

problem #663

Dec 112009


  • 42,000 miles
In addition to my complaint, ODI id #10400072, when I turn my headlights on, the lighting in my console loses it brightness--alot. During the daytime, it is very difficult to see the odometer/speedometer and all other information provided on my console... this includes the built-in gps/info screen. This is definitely a design flaw that Toyota created and approved for sale here in the U.S. I cannot understand why Toyota is not held fully accountable for these very serious flaws and are required to correct these very serious flaws at no cost the the innocent consumer that are victims for purchasing these vehicles fully trusting that Toyota fully backed up their vehicles and reputation. What will it take to require Toyota to make the necessary repairs to rectify these very obvious flaws in their vehicles" a death as a result of an innocent driver and his family trusting the Toyota brand name" I sure hope not.

- Mayfield, KY, USA

problem #662

Jan 012010


  • 50,000 miles
Like many other Prius owners, I began to experience headlamp problems after about 4 otherwise very satisfactory years of driving my 2006 Prius. One of the lamps (the right so far) goes off irregularly during operation, and I can't tell when it has gone. This condition creates a safety hazard for other drivers because (1) in the dark a "one-eyed" car could be looming on either side of the one visible light, and (2) to reduce the risk (I think!) I routinely drive with brights on which blinds on-coming drivers. Blogs on this subject make a fix sound too uncertain and expensive to entrust to a dealer or do myself. NHTSA should take another look.

- Salem, VA, USA

problem #661

Jan 152009


  • miles


The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Prius. While driving approximately 60 mph, the contact noticed the passenger side headlight failed. The contact replaced the bulb and the headlight failed three more times on both the driver and passenger sides. The failure recurred intermittently. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was unknown.

- Hadley, NY, USA

problem #660

Feb 012010


  • 65,000 miles
Toyota 2006 Prius. Both hid head lamps intermittently go off, but usually not at the same time. Currently have 75K mi on car. Problem started when car had approx 55K miles on it.

- Ashburn, VA, USA

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problem #659

May 242011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 97,000 miles
We have a 2006 Toyota Prius that the dealer wants $900 to replace the headlights. The headlights cost $150 each and the rest of the labor charge is do to the design of the car which requires the front bumper to be removed to change a light bulb. This is not only a bad design, but a rip off for the american consumer.

- Severna Park, MD, USA

problem #658

May 012011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 62,000 miles


The right headlight for our 2006 Toyota Prius goes out intermittently. When the lights are turned completely off, then back on, the headlight begins to work again. This is a regular daily occurrence and has caused us to avoid using the vehicle at night for safety reasons. The headlight controller was replaced in 2008, when we first had the issue, but the problem has resurfaced. Toyota has said that there is no problem with the parts and has refused to correct the problem under warranty.

- Antioch, IL, USA

problem #657

Feb 102011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 37,000 miles
While driving in the dark in the middle of the night, the headlights spontaneously went out without warning. I drove in pitch black darkness until I could stop the car. Then I took it to a Toyota dealer service department and the mechanic told me the lights were overheating and then failing.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #656

Dec 112009


  • 40,000 miles
The drivers side headlight keeps going out. When first turned on, it glows and after awhile it goes out. When I turn the lights out and back on, it glows again; but for only a very short time. It refuses to stay on when needed during inclement weather or night driving. This is very dangerous to say the least! it is only a matter of time before I am pulled over by police for this defect. I've seen this problem has been reported by many other 2006 Prius owners and I feel it is my responsibility to report this malfunction/defect myself. Toyota should be held fully responsible for this defect and should be required to fix this very dangerous safety-related defect. I hope you can help with in requiring Toyota to recall these vehicles and fix this very dangerous and definitely safety-related situation/defect/malfunction. I hope we won't have to wait until some people are killed or injured as a result of this safety-related defect before appropriate action is taken to resolve it.

- Mayfield, KY, USA

problem #655

May 032011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 72,000 miles
My 2006 Toyota Prius has had an ongoing problem with their hid headlights. While driving one or both headlights will go off. A quick temporary fix will be to flick the lights off then on again which actually deteriorate the hid bulb leading to shortened life span. However you really have no choice when driving at night. Sometimes you don't even realize they're both off. This can be very dangerous as other drivers wouldn't be able to see your car. Replaced the bulbs and the problem persists. There exists a class action settlement, and was told by the dealer that the problem is the ECU. They only addressed this concern to me after I brought them information about the settlement about a month ago. In the past they've only been either saying they can't reproduce the problem or that I need to replace the bulb. I can tell you right now these are my third pair of bulbs and its definitely not the bulbs as the problem persists just days after the new bulbs are installed. I found out that the settlement extended the warranty to 5 years and 50,000 miles however my car falls outside the mileage range. They won't pay for the ECU because the dealers have never specifically addressed the ECU as being the problem with my car within the extended warranty range even though there were numerous times I would complain about the lights within that range. Toyota needs to recall the ECU for 2006-2009 Prius models. It is not the bulbs.

- Oakland Gardens, NY, USA

problem #654

Mar 012010


  • 30,000 miles


Intermittent headlight failure. Pulled over on 03/01/2010 by a sheriff deputy with a warning that one headlight was out. Five minutes later after a stop, headlight worked fine. Various times over the past year one or both headlights have gone out only to come back on later.

- Syracuse, NY, USA

problem #653

Jul 012010

Prius 4-cyl

  • 69,000 miles
Within 6 months I had a headlight from my 2006 Toyota Prius go out from both sides. Cost $300+ to fix each one.

- Merced, CA, USA

problem #652

Mar 012011


  • 55,000 miles
Drivers side head light intermittantly turns on and off

- Palo Alto, CA, USA

problem #651

Mar 082011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 99,521 miles
2006 Toyota Prius. Headlights keep burning out. I have replaced the headlights twice now and they burn out within three months. There has to be some problem with the wiring for these headlights.

- Shawnee, KS, USA

problem #650

Mar 082011


  • 68,000 miles
I own a 2006 Toyota Prius with hid headlights. The right headlight is intermittent. This is a safety hazard especially driving down a dark road at night.

- Virginia Beach, VA, USA

problem #649

Mar 062011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 98,852 miles
Purchased a used 2006 Toyota Prius in December 2009. Current mileage is 98K. Received a notice last week about a class action settlement which would pay for past headlight replacement costs, and extend the new vehicle limited warranty through the earlier of 5 years or 50,000 miles. Two days ago, after driving 30 minutes in rain with the headlights on, I found the left headlight was out. Turned off the vehicle, and ten minutes later drove one mile and stopped, and found the right headlight was out. Upon returning home, the right headlight was out and the left headlight was flickering; I recorded this with video on my phone...and within 20 seconds the flickering bulb also went out. I have teenage drivers - this is a safety issue, not just a maintenance issue! both lights could burn out on a dark unlit road without warning and the driver -- especially an inexperienced driver -- could have a very serious accident. I have no idea if the previous owner experienced this problem when the car had less than 50,000 miles or not. But the bottom line is that this is an unpredictable safety issue which can occur at any time and at any speed....and the class action settlement does not ensure that this unsafe situation will be corrected for all Prius with hid headlights! NHTSA - we request your help with this situation.

- Durham, NC, USA

problem #648

Mar 032011

Prius 4-cyl

  • miles
I own a 2006 Toyota Prius with hid headlights. The headlights turn off by themselves intermittently. Sometimes one, sometimes both. You can't always tell when they are off because, in general, the headlights do a very poor job of illuminating the road in front of the vehicle. I have complained to the dealer since I have owned the car but have been consistently told that there is nothing wrong, just that maybe the car needs to have the headlights replaced. This has been happening off and on since I purchased the vehicle in August 2006.

- Shaker Heights, OH, USA

problem #647

Feb 012011


  • miles
Problem with intermittent hid headlight operation

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #646

Aug 102010

Prius 4-cyl

  • 45,000 miles
Headlights have failed repeatedly on 2006 Toyota Prius. Owner replaced headlamps three times; dealer has replaced two headlamps. In one case, headlight ceased working then later worked. This began in August 2010 and has continued ever since with latest headlight outage occurring 02/12/2011.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #645

Feb 052011


  • 78,500 miles
The hid headlights on this vehicle are intermittent. Either or both headlights fail without warning, and re illuminate by cycling the headlight switch. So far one dealer repair attempt has not been successful in fixing the problem. Repairs for this headlight system are very expensive, and not always successful.

- Eagan, MN, USA

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