hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
55,568 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 Avalon lights problems

lights problem

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2008 Toyota Avalon Owner Comments (Page 2 of 10)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #164

Nov 152014


  • 72,775 miles


While driving down a remote dark county road, first my high beam lamps failed simultaneously, then approximately five seconds my left low beam lamp failed. I stopped the car, turned all headlamps off, then after fifteen seconds, I turned the low beam lamps on. After a warm up period, the low beam lamps illuminated. The high beams never illuminated again. The day-time running lamps are no longer working.

- Carmel, IN, USA

problem #163

Nov 012013

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 95,000 miles
I was driving in a rural area in Illinois where we have a lot of deer, so I flipped on my high beams for better visibility. I had purchased the car with 87,000 miles on it that summer and may not have even used them yet. The high beams stayed on for a few seconds and then flashed and went back to low beam. I checked them upon arriving home and could see that they shattered. I replaced these with bulbs from O'reilly auto - using gloves to avoid touching them - these high beams were seldom used but worked. It is now November of 2014 and these also failed; did not shatter but failed to illuminate. I assume they are burned out. I am concerned that I may never be able to use the high beams for safety on this otherwise fantastic car. I have avoided using the high beams ever since I replaced them the first time, so I am not sure when they actually quit working this time.

- Bloomington, IL, USA

problem #162

Jun 012014


  • 105,000 miles
I don't remember the exact time & date this started, but it is continuous & repetitive. The headlights consistently turn off while driving. For a trip of about ten miles, I can expect for one or both to fail about three times. It's dangerous. I was told that the company has sent notifications to the dealers but are refusing to administer a recall. They offered me a $750 credit to have it repaired. However, as you can see from the many previous complaints about this problem, it costs over $2,000 to fix it (and that's not a guarantee). This is a design flaw. Therefore, it should not be affected by a warranty. I'm shocked at the volume of complaints about this issue with no actions by the company. They are morally (if not ethically and legally) obligated to issue a recall and repair their R&D failure.

- Macon, GA, USA

problem #161

Apr 132013

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 44,360 miles


Hi beam headlights failed while driving at night on dark country road. Took car in for repair. Both hi beam bulbs were broken. They were replaced second incident appx. 8 mos, ago. Hi beams failed to work. Had bulbs replaced. Third incident 2 weeks ago. Inspected bulbs. They are burnt out. Bulbs not yet replaced.

- Roswell, GA, USA

problem #160

Nov 012014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 61,925 miles
I was driving on a very dark two-lane state highway using my high beams while cautiously watching for deer. All of a sudden my high beams went to low beams. The switch worked and the dash board light showed that the high beams were on but they obviously were not on. When I had the opportunity to check the lights in a well light area I could see that both bulbs shattered in the housing assembly. There are small fragments of glass spewed everywhere inside the casing. Earlier this year Toyota sent a letter stating a warranty enhancement because they are aware of this problem. The enhancement applies for 72,000 miles or 5 years from the date of first use, whichever occurs first. My car is now 6 years so the warranty will not apply. I seldom drive in the late evening and I seldom use my high beams. I believe this would have happened within the warranty period if I would have used the high beams more frequently. This is going to be a very costly out-of-pocket repair that obviously is a safety feature that Toyota should pay for given the fact that they are aware the high beam/drl bulbs can become inoperative.

- Oshkosh, WI, USA

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problem #159

May 032010


  • 74,500 miles
After receiving Toyota tsb sb-0011-10 in April 2010, I went in to the local Toyota service department to check it out. They indicated that the high beam light bulbs could explode and that the entire high light assemblies needed to be replaced. I asked about getting mine done but, they said because my car had over 70,000 miles they would not replace them per the tsb. But they told me they would be happy to replace them at my cost of about $2400. Shortly after that the bulbs exploded in my units. When I tried to replace them, I was told that the listed bulb was no longer manufactured. I feel this is something that should be unlimited miles as the replacement unit has been discontinued by the bulb manufacturer. And that this is a safety hazard to proper operation of the car.

- Fortson, GA, USA

problem #158

Oct 082014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 25,000 miles


Car is driven about 2,000 miles per year, city driving and mostly during the daytime. No real need for high beams while driving. Unsure when the problem happened, but I was a long journey in the country and high beams were needed. Unable to have them on. After the trip called the dealership, brought in for repair. Was told that both headlight lens assemblies were needed to the tune of over $900. I was told that the warranty extension for 5 years or 72,000 miles only. At the time the car was purchased I paid for the extended warranty for the 7 year plan. I was told that under this warranty headlights were not covered. This car is completely out of warranty. Research on the internet shows that this car has major issues with the headlight len assemblies. Why did not Toyota issues notices to the consumers about this issue" or a recall" there is a major problem when it is with the same problem with this make/model.

- Springfield, VA, USA

problem #157

Aug 252014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 36,000 miles
Went to use high beams on desert road towards lancaster ca, put high beams on, they stayed on for about 3 minutes then all front lighting went out. Went to dealer (roseville Toyota) to check on the problem, dealer said they were not covered by warranty even though Toyota knows of problem. Will cost $3,000 to repair with replaced headlight assemblies. Car has only 39,000 miles on it and an extended warranty.

- Roseville, CA, USA

problem #156

Sep 022014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 96,985 miles
I have a 2008 Toyota Avalon. I was traveling September 2, 2014, at approximately 9:00 P.M. on highway 49 in Alabama. The control for the headlights was in the "on" position and they began to flicker and grew dimmer and dimmer, until they completely went out. I immediately turned the headlight control knob to the "auto" position and the headlights came back on. When the headlight control is in the auto position, the fog lights will come on and remain on, regardless of the time of day or night. However, in the auto position, the headlights will remain off until the sensor detects the absence of daylight. Then the headlights will come on automatically while driving. Thank goodness, they operated in the auto position. I took the vehicle to a shop with a long standing reputation for quality workmanship involving electrical problems. I was informed I needed a new hid bulb and ballast. The total for the parts and labor totaled $696.95. He checked the passenger side as well, which flickered twice within 45 minutes. They did not notice any problem the rest of the day. Should it become a problem in the near future. That will be another $696.95! I have come across numerous complaints from owners of this model and discussions seeking solutions. It would be a shame for someone to die in a situation similar to the one I experienced because he or she panicked and hit someone, or lost control of the vehicle.

- Muscle Shoals, AL, USA

problem #155

Jul 272014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 67,000 miles
I own a 2008 Toyota Avalon. While driving at approximately 55 mph on a highway, I attempted to turn on the high beam headlights which failed to activate. The vehicle was taken to a Toyota dealer for a diagnostic testing. The technician stated that the high beam bulbs failed in the headlamp assembly as a result the headlamp assembly needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer knows about this defect and has extended the warranty to 5 years or 75000 miles, whichever occurs earlier. My car has completed 5 years, but the mileage is below 75000. The approximate failure mileage was 67,000. The manufacturer should be asked to replace the defective parts with out any charge.

- Germantown, MD, USA

problem #154

Jul 232014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 54,000 miles


While driving on a 2 lane mountain road at night I turned the high beams off for oncoming traffic and when I turned them back on there was a bright flash and the high beams no longer worked. Toyota has issued a technical service bulletin that reads: "on some 2008-2010 Avalon vehicles, the high beam/drl bulb may become inoperative or shatter. A newly designed high beam/drl housing assembly (including the applicable bulb) is available in the event this condition has occurred." Toyota will provide the replacement under warranty if the vehicle is under 5 years or 70,000 miles. Originally they issued the bulletin authorizing replacement for 36 months or 36,000 miles and subsequently increased it to 5 years, 70,000 miles. My 5 years was up on March 20, 2014. The local dealer quoted me $2,583.88 for the repair. It seems to me that this is a definite safety issue that should have been recalled, since it involves the headlights. While high beams are not always required, 2 lane roads at night are certainly safer using high beams.

- Ventura, CA, USA

problem #153

Aug 042014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 68,500 miles
My 2008 Toyota Avalon has a defective passenger daytime running light/high beam. Documented defect and Toyota issued a warranty enhancement to increase the coverage to 5 year/ 72000 mile to cover replacement but only if you have an issue. There was no recall. 6 years out and under the mileage limit I am stuck paying for a $2500 repair for something that should have been a recall. I don't see how having headlights that are known to be defective would not be considered a safety issue. If high beams were not needed than they wouldn't be on the car. Can't alert oncoming traffic to a potential traffic safety condition ahead. Can't turn on high beams on country road to safely see far enough ahead to prevent potential road hazards. Not having high beams is definitely a safety issue.

- Salem, VA, USA

problem #152

Jul 272010

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 29,294 miles
High beam/running bulbs were burnt out. On July 18,2014 high beam bulbs both failed a second time as I was driving in the dark at freeway speeds. Vehicle mileage at the time was 80540. Toyota must be made to have a recall on these vehicles.

- Andover, MN, USA

problem #151

Jul 122014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 64,300 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Avalon. The contact stated that while driving at approximately 35 mph on a dark road, the contact attempted to turn on the high beam headlights which failed to activate. The vehicle was taken to a dealer for a diagnostic testing. The technician stated that the high beam bulbs fractured in the headlamp assembly as a result the headlamp assembly needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 64,300. Updated 9/4/14 the consumer stated the failure was the result of poor design by Toyota. Which was eventually re-designed in 2010. The assembly was too small for the heat generated by the lamps and as a result, the lamps became welded to the assembly. When it welded, it was impossible to replace a burned out lamp. The entire light assembly needed to be replaced at a cost of $2700. Updated 11/17/14

- Pickerington, OH, USA

problem #150

Apr 282014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 71,000 miles
Front headlights suddenly cut off. I quickly switched interior light control and they immediately came back on. With no further obvious problems I dismissed issue as incidental. However, approximately 6 weeks later I was told my passenger side headlight was out. However, when I checked it was working. On 7/7/14 I was stopped by fhp and given warning for passenger side headlight out. On 7/12/14 gatorland Toyota replaced passenger side headlight bulb ($214.15) and said everything ok. On 7/15/14 I was advised that driver side headlight out. On 7/18/14 gatorland Toyota advised both front headlight assemblies required replacement at $2,219.95 plus tax (free labor) to install. Since out or warranty costs all mine. This is in spite of the fact that I have followed service manual to the letter and all work since purchase date performed at gatorland (approximately 20 service calls). On 7/29/14 the Toyota representative indicated they could do nothing as care out of warranty.

- Gainesville, FL, USA

problem #149

Jun 202014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 99,000 miles
My husband and son were recently in omaha and experienced severe weather (tornados/thunderstorms/flooding). As they were driving back to the campground West of omaha, during torrential rains, the headlights on our 2008 Toyota Avalon turned off repeatedly. My husband had to continue to switch the lights off and on while driving to get the lights to stay on. This has happened in the past; however, it was not during adverse driving conditions. About a week later, as I was driving through the black hills at night (where we have an abundance of wildlife), I experienced the same problem. I researched a resolution to figure out what might be wrong with the headlights, thinking it might be a loose wire or bad bulbs. During my research, I discovered that Toyota had issued a service bulletin in 2011 (tcs-11-030) related to this problem. We purchased our vehicle in November 2012, when the mileage was around 47,000 miles. Had we known about this service bulletin when we purchased the vehicle in 2012, we would have had the issue addressed. However, since we did not know about the recall and have not until very recently, during dangerous driving conditions, had problems with the lighting, we did not address it. When I called Toyota today, I was told that, due to our mileage on the vehicle (100,000 now), our vehicle was no longer covered under the extended that was issued (unbeknownst to us) in 2011. I was told that I could take the vehicle to a Toyota dealer in our area for diagnosis (at our expense) and possibly something could be done if the diagnosis revealed that our headlight issue was related to the recall in 2011 (the recall specifically addresses Avalons manufactured between 2008 and 2010). As I explained to the customer service rep, we may have been experiencing this issue during the day but didn't know due to the fact that we don't rely on the lights during daytime.

- Spearfish, SD, USA

problem #148

Apr 082009


  • 25,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Avalon. The contact stated that the passenger side low beam headlights would erroneously shut off. When the headlight switch was turned off and back on the passenger side headlights would function normally; however, the failure recurred. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, who diagnosed that the headlight assembly needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 25,000.

- Belleville, IL, USA

problem #147

Jun 062014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,600 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Avalon. The contact stated that both the driver and passenger side headlights (high beams) malfunctioned without warning. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 36,600. Updated 9/4/14 updated 09/16/2014

- Ashford , CT, USA

problem #146

Oct 072013

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 98,000 miles
The headlights go off intermittently. First it was the driver side then the passenger side and recently both on a dark road. Very dangerous and I have read other accounts that Toyota charges huge amounts when this is clearly a safety issue.

- Orange Beach, AL, USA

problem #145

May 212014

Avalon 6-cyl

  • 65,152 miles
On servicing of model XLS, service adviser noted that hi beam/drl's were not functioning. Investigation revealed exploded halogen lamps. Correction required a redesigned replacement of both headlight assemblies, as noted in tsb 44-0010, at an approx. Cost of $900. This was apparently due to a design flaw in the original headlight housing which allowed overheating and caused the lamp explosion. The tsb recognized this condition but does not replace the defect after a provided warranty extension to 5 years/72,000 miles. The loss of high beam lighting is a safety issue which can go undetected until needed. Although daytime running lights, (drl's), are not required, they do provide the required lighting during times when windshield wipers are required (rain, snow, sleet. Loss of either affects driving safety.

- Powell, OH, USA

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