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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
57,084 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 21 of 24)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #73

Nov 172009


  • miles


I own a 2008 Prius purchased new. I have the hid headlights. The car has 49,000 miles. The headlights go out and will come back on sometime on their own or by turning the lights off and back on. This is very dangerous. I do not think it is the bulbs that are bad due to the come back on. I went online and found that this problem is happening to alot of Prius owners and the outrageous prices that dealers are charging to replace the bulbs just for it to recur.

- Georgetown, KY, USA

problem #72

Nov 042009


  • 30,000 miles
2008 Toyota Prius headlights: The driver side headlight goes out unexpectedly. If the lights are turned off and back on the headlight comes back on. This occurs with both low- and high-beam operation. The problem is intermittent and very dangerous. I took the vehicle to a repair shop to diagnose the problem and they said the lights worked fine for them and they couldn't replicate it. They checked the connections thinking that may have been an issue. The problem has gotten worse. I had an occasion driving to work along a very dark rural section of open road where there are large herds of deer and elk often jumping the fence and wandering close to the road. On one occasion my lights went out and I had to turn the lights off and on again while also trying to slow down without causing an incident. Upon the lights coming back on I immediately saw several deer that had wandered out of the growth by the side of the road and into my path no more than a 100ft in front of me. I had to brake very hard to avoid them. Without adequate lighting if I had tried to pull off to the side of the road in a controlled manner I would have likely driven right into the deer. This caused an extremely dangerous situation that could have been a lot worse. I am now furious at the quoted cost to replace the bulbs. But, I have no option but to shell out the money to replace them. I'm even more furious that Toyota seems to be ignoring the problem in the hope it will go away. I regard this as a huge safety issue that I believe Toyota should address with a recall to fix the obvious defect in the Prius lighting system. This problem detracts from an otherwise excellent car.

- Farmington, UT, USA

problem #71

Nov 112003


  • 21,692 miles
Off and on high intensity discharge headlights 2008 Prius 15 months old, 22,800 miles. Randomly go off making driving at night hazardous. Replacement price over 500 dollars! no accident yet.

- Roseburg, OR, USA

problem #70

Nov 072009


  • 28,000 miles


I drive my car and the driver side headlight goes off. I can switch the light on and off and it will come on for a few minutes to a little while and then go back off. It happens all the time. Replaced the bulb and check the fuses.

- Midland, GA, USA

problem #69

May 012009


  • 38,000 miles
2008 Toyota Prius headlamp keeps going out. Replaced both hid headlamps as Toyota corporate told me to do and problem consists. Safety hazard while driving at night with children in car and busy pedestrians on dark roads with strollers and babies not counting deer or other animals. Toyota has refused to recall issue. Im tired!

- Woodridge, IL, USA

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problem #68

Nov 012009


  • 23,210 miles
Driver's side hid headlight spontaneously failed, both high and low beams, was able to continue driving with only passenger-side headlights but was concerned they might fail as well. Car is less than 2 years old; dealer covered replacement under standard Toyota Prius warranty.

- Roslyn, NY, USA

problem #67

Nov 082009


  • 16,000 miles


A recall is necessary on this Prius headlight issue. They are continuing to fail right and left and the dealerships are ripping people off to the tune of over $300 to change a headlamp. They fail at less then 16K miles either totally or by intermittently going on and off.

- Auora , CO, USA

problem #66

Oct 292009


  • 15,000 miles
Hid headlights on 2008 Toyota Prius began to dim suddenly and stay dim. Flashing lights on and off temporarily brighten the lights but they become dim again. Happens constantly.

- Rock Island , IL, USA

problem #65

Nov 022009


  • 56,000 miles
Both headlights on our 2008 Prius began flickering on and off, and ultimately would flicker off at night leaving us with no lights. If we turned the lights off and then on again, the lights would work for a few minutes then turn off again. The car was only two years old. When we took the car to the dealership, we were told we would need to replace both bulbs at a cost to us of over 600 dollars. Toyota dealership replaced both lights, the next day the passenger hid headlight was already out again, so we took the car back, and they said the brand new bulb must have been defective. I don't believe them, it seems obvious there is a problem with these hid lights.

- Sterling, VA, USA

problem #64

Nov 022009


  • 42,000 miles
Left front headlight on 2008 Toyota Prius keeps going off.

- Dunwoody, GA, USA

problem #63

Oct 262009


  • 56,000 miles


Both headlights on our 2008 Prius began flickering on and off, and ultimately would flicker off at night leaving us with no lights. If we turned the lights off and then on again, the lights would work for a few minutes then turn off again. The car was only two years old. When we took the car to the dealership, we were told we would need to replace both bulbs at a cost to us of over 600 dollars.

- Sterling, VA, USA

problem #62

Oct 102009


  • 47,000 miles
I had a headlight go out. Before I could get it fixed I noticed that it would come on when I turned the lights on and then fade out. Subsequently, the other headlight went out while driving down the road, at night. I turned off the headlight switch and then turned it back on and the one light came back on. I took it to the dealer and they replaced one bulb. It lasted a week and then driving at night the lights went out again. I again turned the lgithts off and on and the came back on. I have researched this problem online."sourceid=navclient&aq=2H&oq=&ie=utf-8&rlz=1T4ggik_enus283us283&Q=Prius+headlight+problems. This is a clear safety issue that needs to be addressed. Who is to say that someone hasn't been killed already. Are there any unexplained Prius accidents running off the road for no reason"

- Larwill, IN, USA

problem #61

Oct 262009


  • 41,000 miles
My right headlight goes off and sometimes it will come back on with me turning off the on the headlight. My wife today had the light turn off and the maintenance light came on. I tried to turn off then on but the light stayed off. I am going to have the vehicle towed 55 miles to the Toyota dealer in redding ca. Upon reading the Prius chat site I have found out that this is a common problem with Prius's with hid lights. This I feel is a factory problem and should not cost me anything to fix. Thanks dennis swope

- Burney, CA, USA

problem #60

Jul 162009


  • 41,500 miles
The hid bulb on the passenger side of my 2008 Toyota Prius with only 40K miles on it, goes out intermittently. If I turn my switch off and then back on, the bulb will come back on, for a little while. The dealership wants $300 to replace the bulb. The hazard of possibly losing the driver side light before I can get the passenger side repaired is of great concern. This is a continuing, constant problem.

- Temecula, CA, USA

problem #59

Oct 152009


  • 37,000 miles
I work in the field of law enforcement. I got off duty and was getting ready to leave when another officer notified me that my drivers side headlamp was not operable. As a peace officer I can testify that I've had numerous contacts with the owners of late model Prius' pertaining to headlamps and tail lamps being inoperable. This is a serious safety issue and Toyota needs to recall the vehicles and make the necessary repairs. I can say that the local Toyota dealer fixed the issue immediately when I took it in for repairs. I told them I was not going to pay the $300 plus to fix the issue considering it's a common problem with the late model vehicles. The dealer is very reputable and fixed the vehicle without charge. Now I'm concerned about the other head lamp and having it replaced before it goes out.

- Fairifeld, CA, USA

problem #58

Oct 162009


  • 38,000 miles
The hd headlights on my 2008 Toyota Prius go off at times. Last night I was driving and both headlights went off, I tried the brights but they didn't work either. I pulled over to a gas station and turned of the car and restarted it. This time only one light came on and the brights worked only on one side. This happened in August too but then the lights came on again and there wasn't a problem. However in the past 3 days the problem has resurfaced. The bulbs are not burnt. I live in the mountains so it was very scary when the lights suddenly went off on the winding mountain road.

- Topanga, CA, USA

problem #57

Sep 072009


  • 36,600 miles
I have a hid headlight on a 2008 Prius that appears to flicker and then goes out. The problem seems to be intermittent and was brought to my attention by a policeman. When I start the car at home the headlight comes on brightly. A few miles down the road the problem starts. Repair cost is very expensive.

- Mission Hills, CA, USA

problem #56

Mar 102009


  • miles
I have a 2008 Toyota Prius with high intensity discharge headlamps, and more often than not they both go out randomly, I have to turn them off then on again to get them to work as many as 5 times an hour of driving (commuter), this problem really started to be an issue back in March when the left headlamp consistently kept going out. Now I brought it in for service and Toyota will cover it this time but although my car is 1 year and 11 months old I have almost reached the 36,000 mile limitation. After which this repair will cost me approximately $1000. I do have Toyota extra care warranty for 8 years or 125,000 miles and the will not cover such issues even if they are due to defects. I am concerned that if this becomes a consistent problem it may cause an accident. I commute daily approximately 50 miles and I always return from work at night. I will get the old set of lamps back from the dealer for analysis if needed. I really think that this concern should be of utmost importance because it has the potential to cause serious injury if it is not corrected.

- Wayne, NJ, USA

problem #55

Oct 052009


  • 30,000 miles
Safety issues with Toyota 2008 Prius headlight system. After living with poor headlight illumination and other headlight issues for about 19 months, I am registering what I consider to be significant safety issues. Headlights: 1. not bright enough. 2. cannot be aimed to give distance illumination 3. blink off driving at night I have made numerous, mostly unresolved, trips to the dealer where we bought the car new. 1. it took two trips to the dealer, to resolve problems with the automatic system for raising and lowering the headlights. I was told the assembly has no shielding or seals to protect it from physical or corrosion damage 2. after alignment adjustments, the headlights continued to be aimed too low. With low beam they are so low that a pedestrian, bicycle, animal, more than about 30 feet away is very difficult to see at night. The high beam setting is somewhat better. We have had several close encounters with deer standing on the road and seeing them barely in time to avoid them. On several occasions I have not seen bicycles or people walking on the edge of the road in the dark again, avoiding them at the last second. The high beam the headlights are not bright enough to cause anyone to flash back at me when they approach from the opposite direction. I have the (expensive) high intensity lights. They have investigated auxiliary headlights for me but have nothing to offer, suggesting I go to an aftermarket person to install additional lights. (I am reluctant to do this, for reasons of complexity, and potential legality.) 3. I have made three additional round trips to the dealer for the problem of headlights (high and/or low beam) that turn off for no reason after driving a short period of time. Luckily it is just one┐.usually but not always the right side. One ┐computer┐ has been replaced. The dealer's service shop personnel indicate all these are problems they have seen previously and are characteristic of the car.

- Bar Harbor, ME, USA

problem #54

Oct 022009


  • 44,000 miles
Toyota 2008 Prius hid headlights randomly turn off (one at a time, usually not together) while driving at dawn, night or dusk. No repairs done at this time until Toyota or the vendor who supplies Toyota hid headlights, computer chip, electronics, software, sensors, etc. Evaluate why this is happening. The workaround is drive to the side of the road and stop, and to unsafely turn the light switch off, then back on. It is unfair to the consumers to pay for replacement components, labor when the manufacturer(s) does not understand why this is happening (based on talking to service rep in July 2009, no service bulletins from Toyota, at airport Toyota in vandalia, oh).

- Cridersville, OH, USA

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