really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
118,005 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.

2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid brakes problems

brakes problem

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2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #39

Sep 032016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 134,000 miles


Brakes stopped working then grabbing. Very dangerous! needs to be a recall on the actuator.

- Melbourne, FL, USA

problem #38

Jun 132016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 119,000 miles
While stopping or stopped with my foot on the brake pedal, there's a clicking sound. I have found that it's coming from the ABS brake accumulator. There have been a couple instances where I'm pressing the brake pedal and it starts to slow down, then feels like the brakes release, then grab again slowing the vehicle to a stop. I've almost crashed a couple times. I've heard and read of many people having the same issue with this system and some have even had accidents due to this. To me, it seems like this would be an ideal candidate for a recall, especially since the repair can be up to $4,000 and most people don't have that much that they can just pay out at a given moment. Also, when turning the key to on, the accumulator has started making a loud buzzing noise for 10-15 seconds. Please consider this system for immediate recall to help prevent any mishaps.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #37

Jan 052016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 72,900 miles
My speed was about 30 mph; speed limit was 40mph. I was driving North-bound approaching an intersection. Up ahead, I saw that traffic was stopping and the light was red. I had plenty of time to slow to a stop, and I started to even though I was back about 15 car lengths from the cars ahead. When I started pushing on the brake, my car immediately ┐died┐ but the car kept rolling forward, even though I confirmed my foot was on the brake. I was very startled that the car kept rolling with brake applied. Before I could think about what to do next, the car then rumbled and shook, and the engine made a revving sound. Then the car just sped up incrementally faster and faster even as I desperately continued to shove hard on the brake. I yelled "what's it doing?┐ I quickly wondered if I should pull the key out of the ignition but felt that was the wrong thing to do. As the car went faster, I went into absolute panic. I could not stop the car. I didn┐T know how to miss hitting anyone. I was desperate to avoid cars, but I was completely unable to stop my car even as I continued pushing hard on the brake. Then I hit the car in front of me at the light. I truly believe this was an unintended brake acceleration. I am deeply compelled to report this so that the cause and resolution may be found before others are seriously hurt or killed. I suffered a fractured back and was in the hospital 4 days; and driver I ran into was hurt as well requiring hospital attention. Both the 3rd party company for Toyota who downloaded the data box and Toyota say the brakes were not applied; that is not factually untrue! the data computer print-out shows what took place prior to the impact. In fact, it shows that the accelerator continued to accelerate up to the point of impact which tells us that the computer took over the actions of the car and disengaged the brakes.

- Long Beach, CA, USA

problem #36

Jun 012016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 15 miles


Dealer stated that brake actuator needs to be replaced. Brakes are not working< vsc light on< noise< $3200 to fix"?? no recall"

- Pensaola, FL, USA

problem #35

May 252016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 273,000 miles
My ABS pump/actuator started making a weird sound and runs a lot. I was told that it needs to be replaced and was quoted $3200. I have a check vsc message, brake light, and ABS light on now as well.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

problem #34

May 232016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 144,000 miles
We purchased a Toyota highlander with the hopes of getting a reliable transportation vehicle due to its high ratings and reported reliability...sadly, I was mistaken when the ABS brakes failed to respond and I nearly got into a horrible accident driving the car on the highway. Upon getting the vehicle looked at, it was ascertained that the ABS actuator assembly was to blame. The cost!!!!!!!!! $1,900 and no recall on a part that should last the lifetime of the vehicle!!!!!! I could of been killed in this faulty contraption due to manufacturers negligence.

- Farmington, MI, USA

problem #33

May 222015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 145,000 miles


When coming to a stop the brakes randomly surge instead of stopping. After a van rear ended my car at a stoplight, the tendency to surge increased and caused two rear end collisions within a few months. Toyota claims there is nothing wrong with it. Codes were documented, but I feel this is an issue that needs to be addressed beyond the manufacturer. It is especially prone to the surge when brakes are hit suddenly on city or highway streets. It feels as though the computer cannot decide whether to charge the battery or brake and that hesitation is frightening!

- Ocoee, FL, USA

problem #32

Feb 202016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 120,000 miles
Brake actuator / accumulator loosing pressure. Actuator motor runs all the time now and at times results in loss of braking. Loss of braking has occurred both in motion as well as at a stop. One time also right after car was turned on and shifted into reverse with brakes applied the car moved in reverse even with brakes applied. We can no longer drive the car due to a safety concern for ourselves, children, and other people on the road. This temporary loss of braking could kill someone. Repair is $2500 at the dealer essentially rendering the car a financial total loss.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #31

Feb 172016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 159,000 miles
Driving and brakes failed. Luckily, was able to pull over avoiding dangerous accident. Dealer states that this is the brake actuator and requests $2500 to fix. Research hows that this is a known issue for years and should have an action for recall.

- Land O Lakes, FL, USA

problem #30

Jan 222016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 180,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Highlander hybrid. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds and depressing the brake pedal to stop the vehicle, the brakes would stop abruptly and in some occasions would case the vehicle to accelerate. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the hybrid brake actuator had failed and would need to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 180,000. The VIN was not available.

- Keller, TX, USA

problem #29

Dec 012015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 167,000 miles


Vehicle makes loud noise after shifting when you release the brake. Was told ABS pump needs to be replaced for $3200 from Toyota dealer

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #28

Nov 292015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 160,230 miles
Upon starting my car, the check vsc system, brake and ABS lights came on. I turned of the the engine and the warnings went away. About three weeks later, as I was driving down the freeway at 70mph, the warning lights suddenly appeared. Took the car to the dealership and was told I need a new battery. Next days, as I was driving down the freeway, again out the warning lights suddenly appeared. Too it back to the dealer and three days later they tell me I needed to fix the brake actuator and the cost would be over 4K. Out of nowhere, the brakes just fail. We can't afford to have the car fixed.

- Mission Viejo, CA, USA

problem #27

Jun 022015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 172,000 miles
I have a 2006 Toyota Highlander hybrid limited. The brakes started working improperly. We had it checked out by local Toyota dealership. The mechanic said the ABS acuator needed to be replaced. My wife and I done some research, this component is suppose to last the life of vehicle. From what I've seen online Toyota will not step up to the plate and recall this part because of cost! this is a vital safety part and cost should not even be part if the equation. To replace this part it costs $2500 to $3500 thruogh the dealership we went to. We can not replace family members if something bad happens. Some one please help, this will end up costing some one their life! the vihicle was in motion when the brake pedal got very hard and would not engage the brakes at all. We almost hit a vehicle in front of us, at the last minute brakes engaged and no incident happened. We have parked the car ever since and will not drive it until Toyota recalls part!

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #26

May 252015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 195,450 miles
On 12/02/13 the brake light and vcs system light came on. The warning light also went on and a beep noise inside the cabin, brakes does not function (breaks not responding). I took the car to an authorized Toyota dealership. According to the dealer codes (C1241 low or high power supply voltage, C1256 accumulator low pressure, and C1391 abnormal leak in accumulator) must be replaced the actuator assy, B part no. 4405048190. Actuator was replaced on 12/28/13 at $1,495 with tax for $ 1,600 and labor cost of $333.84. Ust be replaced. On 05/25/15 again the brake light and vcs system light came on. The warning light also went on and a beep noise inside the cabin, brakes does not function (no break). I took the car to an authorized Toyota dealership for a diagnostic and I pay $64.20. Again they mentioned that for a second time the actuator assy, B part no. 4405048190 needs a replacement. I ask for the guarantee and only was valid for 1 year. Diagnostic trouble codes report (ABS/vsc/trac), codes (C1252 break booster pump motor on time abnormally long, C1256, accumulator low pressure, C1391, abnormal leak in accumulator). I think that there is an electronic problem with the 2006 Highlander hybrid and they do not know what the cause since is in a 6 years period the actuator assy was replaced and less than 1.5 year again the same part (actuator assy) needs replacement, current price is $2,000. I cannot use the car the brakes are not responding and I can have an accident.

- Ponce, PR, USA

problem #25

Aug 032015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 162,000 miles
While driving home from work in normal free-flowing traffic conditions on the freeway, several lights came on the dash indicating brake issues including vsc, ABS, skid, parking brake light. Continued to cautiously drive home, brakes seemed ok. Had our non-dealer mechanic look at the brakes all were fine and had recently been replaced. He could not find a brake issue. Took to the local Toyota dealer and one code came up C1391 "abnormal leak in accumulator" and was told I needed a new brake actuator at the cost of $3273. Diagnostic cost $138. Additional information on diagnostic paperwork from dealer says, "check for dtc's found C1391, check for fluid leaks, could not find leaks, check accumulator pressure voltage (3.5 V), depressed pedal 4-5 times accumulator pressure drops below 3.0 V, recommend replace brake/ABS actuator". other notes, some part of hybrid system seems to be cycling every few minutes. Over the years, when braking, there have been times where they "jump" or don't grab during brake pressure and after reading have found this complaint with other owners. I see that the Camry and the Lexus have both had this part recalled/replaced by Toyota and wondering why, when this is likely the same hybrid system and component, that Toyota will not step up to the plate and offer this replacement part for owners for free or at a discount? the other vehicles have had accidents as a result of this part and Toyota should step up to the plate on the Highlander hybrid.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #24

Mar 272015

Highlander Hybrid 6-cyl

  • 187,554 miles
Driving from austin to san antonio mostly at 70mph. Noticed brake, ABS, slip indicator and low pressure tire indicator lights came on. Stopped to check under hood, braking was normal. Brake fluid levels were normal but ABS actuator seem to be cycling even while motionless. Tested braking and experienced no problem. Drove back to austin. Took car to dealer the next day, was told it was a leak in the actuator body and it had to be replaced. Cost $3580. Have deferred repairs.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #23

Mar 052015

Highlander Hybrid 6-cyl

  • 131,000 miles
Ligths came on for ABS and brake while trying to stop vehicle. Toyota dealer here in Florida wants to replace actuator braking system at my cost $ 2,850 including labor.

- Naples, FL, USA

problem #22

Dec 232014

Highlander Hybrid 6-cyl

  • 170,000 miles
While traveling on a mountain highway my Toyota highlander started making an extremely loud squealing noise from underneath the dash. All of the warning lights on the dash came on and remained on. I lost braking power and pedal went extremely hard. Vehicle brakes locked up while going downhill and vehicle spun out of control. Almost hit an oncoming vehicle coming from the opposite direction. Brakes have been malfunctioning since, vehicle is currently not being driven.

- Port Hueneme, CA, USA

problem #21

Nov 112014

Highlander Hybrid

  • 156,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Highlander hybrid. While driving at low speeds, the vehicle accelerated when the brake pedal was depressed. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 156,000.

- Forest Hill, MD, USA

problem #20

Nov 122014

Highlander Hybrid

  • 98,958 miles
ABS brake accumulator failure at 98,958 miles. Dealer wants $3000 for repair. It looks like all 2006 Highlander hybrids, some Lexus models are impacted. Toyota knows what is going on and they have even redesigned the accumulator for the new highlander with a different part number. Toyota will not issue a recall due to the significant cost of accumulator.

- Lakeland, FL, USA

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