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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
57,338 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.

2008 Toyota Prius lights problems

lights problem

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2008 Toyota Prius Owner Comments (Page 16 of 24)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #175

Sep 252010


  • miles


2008 Prius driver side headlight does not function properly. Bulb has been replaced but the light still works only intermittently.

- Minneapolis, MN, USA

problem #174

Sep 232010


  • 55,000 miles
During normal driving, driver's side (hid) headlight begin failing after a few minutes every time the lights were turned on. After a few days, both headlights began to fail after initially turning on. Turning the lights off and back on returns them to operation, but after a few minutes they fail again.

- Bethel Park, PA, USA

problem #173

Sep 242010


  • 42,300 miles
The headlights on our 2008 Toyota Prius turned off suddenly while we are driving after dark on the highway doing 55 mph. The headlights would not come back on. We had to turn on our fog light to get home this is dangerous during night time driving. According to the internet, this headlight failure problem has been reported many times to your Agency.

- Central Lake, MI, USA

problem #172

Sep 062010


  • 21,500 miles


Hid headlamp replacement for the Toyota Prius. After 21,000 the left bulb started to flicker and then goes out. Can be restarted by turning switch off and then on again. Headlights go out with no notice. Could be very dangerous driving at night on a dark road. Dealer wants anywhere from $350 to $1000 to change the lamps. Say the front bumper needs to be removed. Owners manual has instructions but to me not totally accurate. Following the instructions still does not fix the access problem. Bulbs apparently are only available from the Toyota dealer. Price stats at $175. Besides the price of the bulb and the unnecessary labor this is a very unsafe situation on the road should they go out all of a sudden.

- Henderson, NV, USA

problem #171

Sep 042010


  • 56,700 miles
2008 Prius passenger side headlight is intermittent and for no apparent reason goes off for extended periods and then comes back on. I have been stopped and warned by the police regarding this issue but when I try to check it out it seems to work fine. I have tapped the light and wiggled the wires but to no effect. The internet is full of similar complaints which need to be reviewed and resolved by the manufacturer.

- Hoodsport, WA, USA

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problem #170

Sep 042010


  • 69,000 miles
2008 Toyota Prius high intensity discharge (hid) light flickers and is on intermittently. You never know when it goes out. A call to the local Toyota dealer indicates minimum of $500 to replace 2 headlight bulbs.

- Middletown, VA, USA

problem #169

Jul 202010


  • 47,000 miles


The hid headlamps on the 2008 Toyota Prius keep turning off while I'm driving. Sometimes the left one, sometimes the right one, and sometimes both. I have to turn the headlamp switch off and them back on again to get them the work. Sometimes several times during a 15 min. Trip. My car is only 2 years old with 47,000 miles. I have never had headlamp fail within 2 years. This is very dangerous. These lamps are suppose to last twice as long a regular bulbs and they appear to last half as long. They seem to be over-powered. Got a letter from Toyota that said they would do me a favor and reduce the cost of a new bulb from $300 to $150 (plus labor). The letter also said "try not to use the headlamps". now that is the way to solve a problem. "if the headlamps turn off when you use them, don't use them and they won't turn off!" brilliant!!!"?"

- North Aurora, IL, USA

problem #168

Jul 012009

Prius 4-cyl

  • 24,700 miles
The headlights on my 2008 Toyota Prius go off intermittently and at random. It is a daily occurrence. Sometimes it is the left sometimes the right. Turning the headlights off and then back on will relight the headlamp that has stopped working. Turning them off and then on while driving is not always easy to do and presents a safety problem since I am temporarily not visible to other drivers. On one occasion while making a left turn on an unlite street both headlamps went off and another vehicle almost hit me because I was not visible. I am not always aware that one of the headlights is out. I took the vehicle to the dealer and was told they did not see any problem with the headlights and I must have imagined it. So, I took video. Now they say I need new bulbs at a cost of just under $400 each. I cannot afford it. This is a factory defect that I was never informed about prior to purchasing the vehicle brand new in September 2007. I have been taken advantage of. I would have never purchased the vehicle had I known or been informed of a problem. There are two additional undiagnosed problems. I am told that none will be covered by the dealership or the manufacturer. The cost of the replacement bulbs (which are also defective) will not be covered, regardless of how often I need to replace them.

- Anaheim, CA, USA

problem #167

Aug 012010


  • 46,000 miles
I have just had my left front headlamp go out on my 2008 Prius. There is 46,000 miles on my car and the cost of replacing one headlamp was $254 with labor charge through the dealership where I bought it. This is ludicrous. I can replace a normal headlamp myself for about $15. According to jd power, the expected lifespan of an hid bulb is "3,000 hours (about 90,000 miles for the average driver.)" I don't see how or why the bulb should cost so much to replace and why Toyota does not cover the bulbs for longer. I purchased an extended warranty, only to find out that the extensions are not covered by Toyota but by the individual dealership.

- Granada Hills, CA, USA

problem #166

Aug 282010


  • 37,000 miles
2008 Prius with hid headlights. Driver side headlight goes out after 1-3 minutes. Turning off headlight switch and turning back on restores headlight for another 1-3 minutes.

- Dunsmuir, CA, USA

problem #165

Aug 012010


  • 57,000 miles


The headlight or headlights go out intermittently on my 2008 Toyota Prius hybrid.

- Pensacola, FL, USA

problem #164

Aug 152010


  • 36,000 miles
This car is fairly new and has hid headlights. Last week the right headlight went out. By turning the lights off and on, I was able to get it to come on. I took it to the dealer and they said they checked it out thoroughly and could find no problem. Yesterday, the right headlight was again out, and turning it off and on got it to light up, but dimmer than the left. I believe there is a safety defect in these hid headlights that Toyota is not recognizing.

- Huntsville, AL, USA

problem #163

Aug 152010


  • 43,000 miles
The headlights on my 2008 Toyota Prius just go out randomly. Sometimes it is just the driver side or the passenger side headlight, but at times it has been both. I have to turn the headlights off and then back on to get them to work. But this isn't a permanent solution because it will happen again the next time I start the car. It has even happened 2+ times on the same trip. This is a safety hazard because I generally don't know when one or the other light has turned off unless I happen to see it in the back bumper of the car in front of me. And it would definitely be a hazard if both lights go out and the on/off trick doesn't get them working again. The car is almost 3 yrs old and has 45000 miles. Toyota service department claimed to have not heard of any issues with the lights and I was told they could not see anything wrong and could not replicate the problem while they had my car.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #162

Aug 092010


  • 62,000 miles
Started driving 2008 Prius home and the drivers side headlight went out then both lights. Turned them off and then on again and they worked for a few minutes off again.

- Richfield, MN, USA

problem #161

Jun 012010


  • 32,000 miles
Driver's side headlight on 2008 Prius fails intermittently.

- N. Tonawanda, NY, USA

problem #160

Oct 202008


  • 20,000 miles
We own a 2008 Toyota Prius with hid headlamps. On numerous occasions over the past 18 - 20 months, either headlamp will turn off. This has happened to both driver and passenger side. Turning the switch off and back on restores normal function. We reported the issue to the dealer we purchased the car from and was told they could do nothing except replace headlamps at our expense. The headlamps turn off with alarming regularity, to the point we do not feel safe driving the vehicle after dark.

- El Dorado, KS, USA

problem #159

Aug 042010


  • 75,000 miles
I have a 2008 Toyota Prius and the hid headlights go out after being turned on for about 20 minutes. I can turn the headlights off and back on an the headlights will work for another 20 minutes until one will go out again. I do not leave the lights on all of the time while driving. The replacement bulbs are $150 at Toyota and they say it is not covered by the extended warranty. I do not think the bulbs should stop working so soon.

- Joppa, MD, USA

problem #158

Jul 272010


  • 64,885 miles
Driving to work again in the early a.M., my driver's side headlight went out again, but didn't know it until I was stopped by police. After the officer told me one of my headlights was out, I turned them off, then back on and the officer told me that both lights came back on. He also told me that they have had to stop numerous Prius vehicles with this problem, which supports my contention that this is a serious issue that NHTSA or Toyota needs to address and have fixed w/O having the consumer pay for it, or be hurt if this causes an accident. I have filed several safety complaints now with the NHTSA and have never gotten a response. I would appreciate knowing if these reports are being evaluated or simply ignored, but please do your job and address this situation before someone gets hurt.

- Huntingtown, MD, USA

problem #157

Jan 012010


  • miles
The hid left headlight works intermittently on my 2008 Prius. My car is beyond warranty for this and Toyota has offered "customer support" for this problem at a reduced cost. The reduced cost is in excess of $1000 for control ECU and bulb replacement. Prius forums suggest I contact you for assistance in this safety matter.

- Lake Wales, FL, USA

problem #156

Jul 212008


  • 52,000 miles
2008 Toyota Prius. Upon driving the vehicle the right headlight dims. After approximately 60 seconds both light turn off.

- Zionsville, IN, USA

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