pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
110,000 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replaced electric pump for inverter cooling system and fus (1 reports)
2004 Toyota Prius cooling system problems

cooling system problem

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2004 Toyota Prius Owner Comments

problem #1

May 252008

Prius 1.5L

  • CVT transmission
  • 110,000 miles


After driving the car for around 4 hours , I was at a stop , when the dash warning lights, red triangle, and beeping, went off. I then noticed a burning smell and saw a little smoke from the front left of the car, so I immediately turned off the car. I popped the hood, and looked but everything seemed okay, and I couldn't see anything smoking then. After a bit , I got back in, and tried the power button only, (no brake). The center screen turns on. Another hit of the power button, to get it in neutral , the top display starts to power, about a second, then dies, everything blank. I think I tried this twice, same thing, no change. The car is locked in park and partially blocking a rural road. I call one auto repair with a tow truck, they have the car for several days, but tell me it may be electrical, beyond their diagnostic capabilities. They tow it to the Wichita Toyota dealership. After several days!~! the Wichita dealership service adviser calls and says two fuses blew, one has to be ordered from K.C. They don't know why though. I pick up the car, and find out where the fuses were, because I'm afraid it will reoccur. "Under the dash" was the adviser's answer. We look for the fuses that were changed, but only find one. $240 for this. A day later I notice the bill does not have a separate itemization for the ordered fuse from K.C.. Since I'm afraid this problem may occur again I call back, get a hold of a different service adviser ,who talks to the mechanic. This time I'm told only one fuse was blown, engine compartment, 15 amp, "AM2" .

I talk to someone about being lied by the initial Toyota service adviser, I was told I was probably "mistaken".

Anyway, I drive the car carefully for several weeks for short trips. When I finally drive the car 40 minutes, the warning light comes on again. The car this time still runs, and I turn off the A/C, and drive the car slowly back home. I get an engine code reading at a part store done, the code for ' Inverter coolant pump failure' comes up. I find that pump, and find that it is not running. I buy and install a new coolant pump, and fill with new coolant. I've been running the car for several weeks with no problems. Am speculating the initial burning smell was the electric coolant pump failing, and because the car overheated, wouldn't start, and blew a fuse.

I'm concerned the car has no temperature gauge for the inverter/converter, which basically powers the car's electronics. I believe the car ran , after the initial problem, without the inverter cooling pump operating, and did not throw an engine code until it got hot again.

I'm currently monitoring the inverter's temperature with an oven digital temperature gauge with a probe. It has an audible alert which is set around 140 , it runs in the summertime around 120. An easy $20 dollar monitor . I've learned the car ,when overheated, may lock itself in park, and I don't want to repeat this.

- , Central, KS, USA

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