Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
23 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
7 / 0
Average Mileage:
51,606 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.

2010 Toyota Prius brakes problems

brakes problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2010 Toyota Prius:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2010 Toyota Prius Owner Comments (Page 2 of 9)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #160

May 032016


  • 111,000 miles


While driving home from work, the brakes went out on my Toyota Prius and the warning lights for ABS, traction control, and brakes all came on. I still had a small amount of brake pedal left and the emergency brake continued to work. When the Toyota dealer diagnosed the problem today, they said that it was a $3500 brake booster and that it was not covered under recall or warranty. The symptoms, the warning lights, and the results all match a previous Toyota recall (D0H) exactly, yet they will not include my car under the recall because my VIN is not part of the original recall. They're lucky I wasn't physically injured in accident caused by this. I suggested to their customer service rep that maybe my car should be included in the recall, but they did not agree.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #159

Apr 282016


  • 40,000 miles
I was driving my vehicle at about 35 mph on a two lane, hilly road. Suddenly, the ABS and warning lights started flashing, and there was a loud beeping noise. I pressed the brake pedal, and there was no response. Since I was traveling uphill, I slowed and then used my emergency brake to come to a complete stop. After the vehicle was towed to a Toyota dealer and diagnosed, I was informed that there was an internal leak in the hydraulic unit of the braking system, and that the ABS pump module and brake master cylinder needed replacement. This was a very similar issue to a recall of other 2010 Toyota Prius vehicles, but the recall does not apply to my VIN number. Toyota claims that the problem was "remedied" before my vehicle was produced even though one of my trouble codes is the same as the trouble code referred to in the recall.

- Media, PA, USA

problem #158

Mar 312016


  • 98,000 miles
The contact owns a 2010 Toyota Prius. While driving at an unknown speed, the brakes suddenly failed to operate when the brake pedal was depressed. During the incident, the instrument panel lights illuminated and an audible signal was present inside the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the brake booster was faulty and needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure and the contact was informed that the vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 13V235000 (service brakes, hydraulic). The failure mileage was 98,000.

- Lakeland, FL, USA

problem #157

May 152014


  • miles


The contact owns a 2010 Toyota Prius. While driving at various speeds, the brake pedal was depressed but the vehicle failed to slow down. The contact had to depress the brake pedal with extreme force in order for the vehicle to stop. The yellow and red brake system warning indicators and the ABS warning indicator illuminated. The contact also stated that the brake pedal felt like a sponge once the brake pedal was fully depressed. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the brake booster assembly and the brake booster pump assembly failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and stated that the VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 13V235000 (service brakes). The failure mileage was unknown.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #156

Jan 012016


  • 86,000 miles
The Toyota Prius I have has a recall, I brought the car to Toyota hamer dealer in mission hills, they released the car back to me after the I recieved a brakes recall, I experienced scary unsafe experience in this car. The car was park in a up slop driveway, my family was inside, the car turned on, I had my brake peddle pressed, as I shifted into reverse thecar moved and stopped in a violent way to a stop, I tried gently letting go of the brake paddle and again the car moved swiftly with the brakes engaged to a violent stop. This is very unsafe.

- San Fernando, CA, USA

problem #155

Feb 212016


  • 187,000 miles
Brake booster pump assembly vehicle in motion when on highway when loss of breaking and steering took place. Vehicle lighted icons appeared on dash along with alarm sound. (ABS) (!) (brake) (ss). This unsafe condition could have been avoided if NHTSA would have forced Toyota to recall this defective part in 2013 when Toyota notified NHTSA of the defective braking system. Or Toyota mailed notice to customers as stated back in 2013, which prevention could prevent loss of life or harm. Or class action.

- Ranson, WV, USA

problem #154

Feb 132016


  • 79,800 miles


The issues is my brakes. When I am slowing down at an intersection, typically when the road is wet, if any of my wheels passes over a manhole, or pavement striping that is slicker than the pavement, the brakes will release. On several occasions, my car has gone through or partially through the intersection. Recently this caused me to run a red light. This has been going on since I purchased the car used. I took it to the dealer (burien auto, burien, wa) about 18 months ago with a note explaining what is happening, and the mechanic said he road tested it and there was no problem.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #153

Feb 022016


  • 139,500 miles
My car at 139,500 miles driving straight on a main road at 45 mph had three lights come on, red 'brake' light, yellow 'ABS' light and the yellow 'tcs' light. Earl stewart Toyota diagnosed problem as brake actuator needs to be replaced at a cost of labor/parts of 2,100$. I was able to financially afford the repair so I told them to perform the repair. Less than two days later, driving normally on a main road, the same three warnings appeared, and of course upset me greatly. Toyota this time diagnosed the problem this time as the brake booster needs to be replaced. Another dealer said the brake master cylinder needed to be replaced. I am in talks with the dealer to figure out how to proceed.

- Gainesville, FL, USA

problem #152

Feb 162016


  • 63,000 miles
Driver made a sudden stop to avoid an accident on 2/16/15, engaging the brakes. Afterward the brakes alternated between being hard to push and being soft to push. Driver parked the vehicle 5 minutes later. The next time the car was turned on(approximately 60M later), the car began beeping and showing three error lights - ABS, (!), and the traction control symbol. After running diagnostics, the driver was told by a mechanic that the problem sounded exactly like a previously issued recall (tcp-D0H); however, Toyota has indicated that our model is outside the scope of their recall. Given that we have the same make/model/year car as the recall and the same issue described, the situation is highly suspect. In addition to insuring my own family's safety, I'm hoping to make sure this potentially dangerous brake issue isn't more widespread than Toyota has admitted.

- Herndon, VA, USA

problem #151

Feb 102016


  • 800,000 miles
When braking on a bumpy road, over a pot hole or on slippery road the brakes slip and the car propels forward. This happens on city streets while in motion.

- Colorado Springs, CO, USA

problem #150

Jan 022016

Prius 4-cyl

  • 68,840 miles


As I was driving, I noticed that when I pressed on the brakes, the car would jerk forward before coming to a stop. Once stopped (but still turned on), the car made a buzzing noise I had never heard before. No warning lights came on, and the brakes did not squeak. An hour later, my husband drove the car home for me (I rode with a friend), and he reported that warning lights came on and the brakes did not work properly. In order for the brakes to work, he had to press very hard on them and also allow much more distance for the car to stop. He could have easily crashed into the back of another vehicle. He took the car to the Toyota dealership and was informed the brake booster assembly would have to be replaced. This is the same complaint as a 2010 Prius recall, but my VIN number was not included in the recall, so I did not receive a notice in the ail. Also, we had to pay $3008 to have the brake booster assembly replaced. The consumer referenced recall # 13V235000. Updated 02/11/16.

- Elon, NC, USA

problem #149

Jan 252016


  • 120,000 miles
Driving on highway the ABS and brake warning lights came on and an alarm started sounding. I waited until light traffic applied brakes pedal felt like I was pressing on a brick, no braking occurred I pressed harder, the brakes became softer went to the floor and the brake pads grabbed hard on the wheels. There is no controlled braking on the car. Dealership says the brake booster pump failed, this is the same year model that had braking problems related to nitrogen in the break lines caused by a failed brake booster pump. The VIN is also very close to affected vehicles. Fortunately when this occurred I was in a position to navigate to where I could test the brakes in a fairly controlled environment. Had it happened in heavy traffic it would have almost certainly resulted in a serious accident.

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #148

Nov 042015


  • 160,000 miles
Loss of brake pressure, with insufficient breaking to hold at a stop while in drive. Warning lights for brake system, ABS, electronic brake system (yellow exclamation point in a circle), and traction control. Diagnosed by brown Toyota in charlottesville va as faulty brake booster, accumulator, and master cylinder. Brown Toyota said it was a recurring problem they have encountered and they have been in contact with Toyota headquarters about it. Estimate was $5800. Toyota customer service was contacted. Was told it is not one of the 2010 cars covered by the recall despite being the same failure and no compensation was offered.

- Charlottesville, VA, USA

problem #147

Oct 212015

Prius 4-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
Vehicles brakes are spongy and unpredictable. The dealer recommended to do a brake fluid exchange and now the problem has gone away. This issue seems very similar to NHTSA campaign id number: 13V235000, where nitrogen enters the brake fluid and makes the brakes less responsive. However, the dealer said this vehicle is not covered by that recall and I was charged $150 for the repair.....updated 12/02/15 the consumer stated the brakes felt spongy and were unpredictable at low speeds of less than 20 mph. Updated 12/28/15.

- Milpitas, CA, USA

problem #146

May 062015


  • 72,000 miles
The contact owns a 2010 Toyota Prius. While attempting to park the vehicle with the brake pedal engaged, the vehicle accelerated independently without warning. As a result, the contact crashed into the curb. The air bags failed to deploy. A police report was not filed and no injuries were reported. The vehicle was taken to a dealer, but was not diagnosed. The body damage was repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 72,000.

- Monterey Park, CA, USA

problem #145

Apr 062015


  • 130,000 miles
While decelerating due to application of the brake pedal if the vehicle encounters a pothole or other deep road imperfection the braking cuts out and the vehicle resumes coasting immediately even though the brake pedal is depressed. Harder application of the brake pedal is necessary to resume vehicle braking. Subsequent braking power is much reduced compared to normal braking and significantly harder brake pedal pressure is necessary. Normal braking may be reestablished by lifting the food off the brake pedal completely and re-depressing the brake pedal. The severity of the sudden loss of braking (complete loss of braking) is shocking, alarming, and panic enducing and results in whiplash to the vehicle occupants as the passengers, being unconsciously braced for deceleration, are suddenly jolted back into their seats. When another vehicle is located in front of the vehicle the sudden loss of braking and subsequent weak braking power despite strong brake pedal depression is highly alarming. The most reproducible situation in which this happens is on dry pavement while exiting a highway and decelerating on a straight or slightly curved exit ramp with one or more potholes. The phenomenon occurs in other circumstances as well where a pothole is encountered while the vehicle is under braking.

- Norfolk, VA, USA

problem #144

Sep 032015


  • 60,000 miles
When applying the breaks before and over railroad tracks, the breaking will disengage and then reengage. It will also happen with pot holes. You get the feeling the car won't stop. This has been happing for year and the service department gives different answers to the cause.

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #143

Jun 292012


  • 12,500 miles
I have had this problem ever since I bought this car used from a Toyota dealership. If I drive over an uneven surface, pothole, etc., my car will skip and then lurch forward. It is worst on wet roads. I have trouble stopping it. On snow I have little to no traction. I got a new set of tires and I wasted my money. No difference. I don't feel safe driving this vehicle. I have been driving for years, had many different vehicles, drive as part of my job, and have never experienced anything like it. Contacting Toyota about it was a waste of time. I have spoken to other Prius 2010 owners and every one says the same thing about how it handles when going over bumps. The skip and lurch could easily result in a rear end collision. I think this is something Toyota just doesn't want to admit to as being a problem.

- Barto, PA, USA

problem #142

Jul 132011


  • 25,000 miles
Car seems to lurch forward before stopping when braking on a rough surface. This is an ongoing problem. Despite NHTSA notice that there is a software fix available for some 2010 priuses, Toyota maintains my car is not included in the batch that was to receive them. Update 9/15/15

- Oakton, VA, USA

problem #141

Nov 052009


  • 500 miles
As many previous owners described, I am also having problems with the brakes at low speed since the beginning of owning this vehicle (October 2009). Dealer couldn't replicate the problem. Although the car went through the recall for the break system is still having the same issue ever since. The other issue with the brakes happens after rain. It makes a screeching noise without performance being effected. It goes away usually within a half an hour. This has been an ongoing thing too for few years by now. The other issue I had as well as others is dimming of lights that has been occurring since last year. We needed to switch the lightbulbs more frequently than seems normal. Didn't even think it was out of the ordinary until I read the comments here about it. The other problem I started to have is with a stereo display system and the voice activation for the bluetooth. The display had some weird lines on it after a very cold or a very hot day (radio was working fine just the display was not working properly). Eventually goes back to normal but this started happening the last year or so. The same time also had a problem with the voice activation unit which turned on unexpectedly and turned back on in 10 seconds after each time I turned it off. This was happening for a good 30 min at that time. This only occurred twice but both times was after a hot day last summer. This year so far haven't happened yet.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?