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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 17 of 24)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #155

May 252010

Prius 4-cyl

  • 30,000 miles


A number of times since we purchased our new Prius in September of 2007, I've questioned in my mind whether our hid headlights were bright enough. I would normally put the thought out of my mind since I wear glassed to read, and I figured that maybe I just need regular glasses. About a month ago things changed while my wife and I were driving from atlanta, ga., to pensacola, fla. To visit family. About 15 minutes from our destination, a sheriff pulled us over, informed, us that one of our headlights was out and almost gave us a ticket. Since we obviously had no idea that one of our lights was out, he gave us a warning instead. The next morning I opened the hood to see if there was a loose connection. When I turned the lights on to test them, they were working and I was not able to duplicate the issue. Every time that I started our Prius while we were in Florida I checked the lights and they were both on. There were a couple of times, after we had been driving for 30 minutes or so that I would check the lights before turning the car off and the passenger side headlight was out. I tried turning the light-switch off and then on and some times the passenger headlight would turn on and other times it would stay off. Since that time, I have checked our headlights on a regular basis and found either the passenger headlight was out or the driver's side headlight was out. Turning the switch off and then back on would sometimes cause the light to come back on but other times it would cause that light to come back on and the other headlight to turn off. Other times, by turning the light-switch off and then back on, both lights would turn off. This is frustrating for me and worries me greatly since my wife is the primary driver of our Prius. I hate to think what would happen if both headlights would turn off while my wife was driving at night on a dark street or highway. This is a gravely important safety issue for my wife and I.

- Marietta, GA, USA

problem #154

Jul 102010


  • 28,000 miles
Hid headlight malfunction - driver side headlamp goes out randomly but comes back on when turned off then back on.

- Portland, OR, USA

problem #153

Jul 082010


  • 42,000 miles
Noticed driver side hid headlight was out on freeway. After stopping and starting car, it worked again. Later noticed that it turns on for a second and turns off on its own and must turn off and on again a few times before it stays on... for how long? 42,000 miles on vehicle. This is dangerous in that it performs sporadically.

- Mequon, WI, USA

problem #152

Jul 062010


  • 63,320 miles


Driving to work in the early a.M., my driver's side headlight went out again. I turned off my headlights, then back on and both lights came back on. I had been driving for probably 20 minutes with just one headlight, and didn't know it, which was very dangerous. There must be something wrong with the electrical system supporting the lighting. This is a safety hazard and it has me worried every time I get on the road that both lights could go out at any time pre-dawn, dusk or night. It is likely making all Prius owners Focus too much on their headlights rather than concentrating on their driving, which is also very dangerous.

- Huntingtown, MD, USA

problem #151

Jul 012010

Prius 4-cyl

  • miles
I have Toyota Prius 2008 with 52000 miles and both hid lights need replacing costing over $500. Was told they have never had problem at dealer and yet was able to find many incidents that indicate is common and a defect in the lights. Toyota gave me a case number, but would take no responsibility.

- Edmond, OK, USA

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problem #150

Jun 222010


  • 62,195 miles
Driving to work in the a.M., and about 5 minutes after leaving the house, my driver's side headlight went out again. I turned off my headlights, then back on and both lights came back on. There is definitely something wrong with the electrical system supporting the lighting. This is a safety hazard and it now has me nervous every time I get on the road that it will go out at any time day or night. It is likely making Prius owners Focus too much on watching for signs their headlights are still on instead of concentrating on their driving.

- Huntingtown, MD, USA

problem #149

Jun 192010


  • 62,153 miles


Driving down the road last night (6/19) and my driver's side headlight went out as I was crossing over a bridge. I closely followed the car in front of me and as soon as I got off the bridge I turned off, then back on my lights, and both headlights came back on. This is a continuing safety issue that needs to be addressed!!!

- Huntingtown, MD, USA

problem #148

Jun 092010


  • 62,010 miles
Hid headlights unexpectedly shut off while driving. When I turn them off, then back on, they work perfectly fine, but I don't know when they'll go out again. This is clearly a safety issue. It does appear that the hid headlight equipped Prius has some electrical or design defect.

- Huntingtown, MD, USA

problem #147

Jun 082010


  • 61,890 miles
Hid headlights unexpectedly shut off while driving. This is clearly a safety issue and appears to be a defect with the electrical system or design of the lighting components other than the bulbs because if I turn them off they come back on fine every time like there's nothing wrong with them.

- Huntingtown, MD, USA

problem #146

Jun 052010


  • 61,853 miles
Hid headlights that unexpectedly shut off while driving, but come back on when manually turned off, then on. Appears to be problem with the electrical system, not the lights, or a design defect.

- Huntingtown, MD, USA

problem #145

May 152010


  • 40,000 miles


I own a 2008 Toyota Prius and on two separate occasions the hid lightbulbs have flickered and gone out while driving. The replacement cost of the lightbulbs is in excess of $200.

- Westminster, CO, USA

problem #144

May 182010


  • 51,052 miles
2008 Prius driver-side headlight goes out frequently but will come back on if you turn the lights on then off again. There is a problem with Toyota hid lights as the vehicle is only 2 years old.

- Littledtown, PA, USA

problem #143

Mar 012010


  • 36,000 miles
Toyota Prius hid headlights fail intermittently when driving. Sometimes it is the left headlight, sometimes it is the right headlight and sometimes it is both. Especially dangerous when both headlights turn off by themselves and we are driving at night.

- Irving, TX, USA

problem #142

May 012010


  • 40,000 miles
Both hid headlights have gone out in under 40,000 miles in my 2008 Toyota Prius.

- Worthington, OH, USA

problem #141

Apr 102010


  • 52,895 miles
2008 Prius with hid headlights. The problem is that the driver's side headlight goes out intermittently. Turning the lights off and back on again sometimes restores the defective light. This is a safety related issue that appears frequently on the Prius chat list and is an expensive fix. Toyota has chosen not to address this issue at this point.

- Duluth, MN, USA

problem #140

Dec 272009


  • 58,000 miles
I have a 08 Prius. The last few months I have been having problems with my headlights. I have people tell me I have a light out, but when I check its working. It seems that I am driving in the dark sometimes with just my fog lamps, I turn the lights off and on then they seem brighter. Headlamps cost $179. Plus labor. Toyota will not guarantee that is the fix and talking it may cost upwards of 4-5 thousand dollars for dependable lights. This seems like a crime too me. I hear of a possible recall of this problem but not really sure what to do about the problem now, I don't have 4-5 thousand dollars to have properly working headlights.

- Decatur, MI, USA

problem #139

Apr 102010


  • 36,300 miles
The hid headlamp of my 2008 Toyota Prius was working intermittently and I got a traffic ticket for it. Since I was unaware that the lamp was out, the ticket was only a warning. I had the lamp replaced at my expense at 36300 miles and $300!

- Winchester, IN, USA

problem #138

Apr 232010


  • 38,232 miles
I own a 2008 Toyota Prius that has intermittent headlight failure. I have been traveling to and from Washington hospital center and my residence in southern Maryland. Approximately, 75 miles each way daily to visit my mother in icu. I have been stopped on numerous occasions by the metropolitan police department as well as the Maryland state police for a headlight out. While being issued a citation, I turn my lights off and on again so the officer can see that it is a mechanical failure, not negligence on my part. This is a safety issue that needs to be repaired by Toyota.

- Broomes Island, MD, USA

problem #137

Apr 102010


  • 32,000 miles
2008 Toyota Prius headlights - the car only has 2 years and 30K miles and the passenger headlight flickered until it finally stopped working. Went to the dealer and they want over $300 to change a light bulb!! so trying to do it myself and I have to take the car apart. It is unbelievable!

- Oviedo, FL, USA

problem #136

Apr 202008


  • 44,000 miles
2008 Toyota Prius--44,000 miles, led headlights keep going out--$166 part + $45 labor. I replaced one in January, 2010, now another April 19, 2010. These are very pricey lightbulbs and need to be recalled and not priced to the customer. The incident date below is the second occurrence. When the police stopped and issued me a warning to tell me that my front headlight was out, he also said that my rear tail-light was out as well. There are definite problems with Toyota and their Prius lighting and I'm tired of paying the bill. My bill today is $250. I also bought a $1100 extended warranty which was of no use.

- Landenberg, PA, USA

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