hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
105,639 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.

2004 Toyota Prius lights problems

lights problem

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2004 Toyota Prius Owner Comments (Page 8 of 8)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #14

Jun 202008


  • 80,000 miles


Hid headlights turnoff on the 2004 Prius. First episode started last summer. Cost $600 dollars to replace one of the headlights. It has been approximately 7 months and the other head light is starting to turn off. This issue is dangerous and needs to be fixed before someone gets hurt.

- Stanwood, WA, USA

problem #13

Feb 142009


  • miles
Both headlights on my wife's 2004 Toyota Prius started going on and off. First the driver's side went out and came back on, eventually both of them went out and we were driving at night in the mountains. This seems to be a common problem with Prius owners after researching the issue. Toyota repair cost have been estimated around $1000.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #12

Aug 012008


  • 135,000 miles
High intensity discharge headlights intermittently going out. No rhyme or reason as to when the outage occurs but turning the circuit off and back on again will re-illuminate the hid headlight...but for how long??

- Trout Run, PA, USA

problem #11

Jan 302009


  • 76,000 miles


The hid headlight on my 2004 Toyota Prius has not been working right on the passenger side for a while. It was going off from time to time. But, now it appears not to be working at all. I took the car to the auto shop and was told that this is a common problem with many Prius cars and that it will cost $457.99 to replace the unit. This appears to be an ongoing issue/defect with many Prius cars, which needs to be addressed asap since this is a huge safety issue. There should be a recall on Toyota Prius headlights since there seems to be a great deal of complaints on this issue which involves the safety of the consumers. Thank you very much for your immediate attention to this matter.

- Oakley, CA, USA

problem #10

Mar 012008


  • 50,000 miles
For the last 30,000 miles on my 2004 Toyota Prius, left hid headlight keeps going off. However, when I switch headlights off and back on, it would go on, and stay on, for couple minutes, sometimes hours. After that it goes off again. At Toyota dealership they told me that computer with the headlight assembly must be replaced. It would cost me around $400. My car is still under warranty, but they said it does not cover it, even though at the day of the purchase of my car, I bought "bumper-to-bumper" additional warranty. Why the headlights are not covered remains a mystery. Research that I did on the issue, showed that many people are having the same problem with their Toyota and have no choice but spend hundreds of dollars on something that looks like a defect in the headlight assembly. I think Toyota should make a recall for this particular part.

- Whitesboro, NY, USA

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problem #9

Jun 012008


  • 100,000 miles
Drivers headlight continuously goes out. I can replace bulbs and it may last 1 week. I can turn my headlights off and back on then it will start working but no more than 1/2 a mile. This is definitely a safety hazard with going down the road and flipping your headlights on and off to get them to work. Took to dealer he told me that most Prius was having this problem but it would cost around 500 to get it fixed. After researching I found a message board with 35 pages address the same complaint with the headlights. Not having both headlights operational is a safety problem that needs to be addressed with the root cause ascertained and repaired by the manufacturer.

- Puxico, MO, USA

problem #8

Oct 142008


  • 106,900 miles


Driver-side hid headlamp in 2004 Toyota Prius was noticed to be very, very, dim (effectively off) around 2008/10/14. Turning headlamps off and on restored brightness. But the problem recurred at unpredictable times--frequently enough to be a serious safety problem. Frequently the driver can't tell while driving, whether one headlamp is off, and obviously it's unsafe to fix it by turning it off and on while driving. Toyota dealer replaced driver-side headlamp on 2008/10/15, for $600! on 12/15 the driver noticed the same headlamp again was misbehaving in exactly the same way, and the problem has recurred since then at apparently random times. Priuschat.com's many posters about this problem make it unlikely that just the bulb is the problem. Probably the ballast. But Toyota won't comment. I do still have the original bulb, and the box from the new bulb. Lisa at Toyota corporate customer experience center replied around 2008/10/18 that Toyota would reimburse half of the $600. But as of 2009/1/3 no reimbursement has been gotten. I called Toyota corporate again on 2008/12/16 and damian said he must forward my new complaint about the repeated failure to lisa, and that she was "required" to respond in one business day. She has not responded as of 2009/1/3. there are many complaints about exactly this problem on priuschat.com at priuschat.com/forums/care-maintenance-troubleshooting/34584-headlight-problem-26.html.

- Pleasanton, CA, USA

problem #7

Nov 272008


  • 110,000 miles
Random headlight failure. When fog lights are not on total failure of headlights has occurred. Right, left or both headlights will go out with no correlation to weather, speed, temperature, location of lamp or time of day. Quickly turning the light switch off then on will reilluminate both lamps. The lamps may go out again, stay lit, the same lamp will go out or the previously lit lamp may fail and the previously failed lamp may light. There is a reduced interval between failures. Lightbulb replacement has been suggested but this has not solved the problem for similar complaints.

- Orefield, PA, USA

problem #6

Nov 072008


  • 50,000 miles
Prius 2004 headlight goes out periodically. Turns back on only when all lights are shut down and turned on again.

- Pensacola, FL, USA

problem #5

Nov 292008


  • 91,384 miles
I own a 2004 Toyota Prius. I just paid $332.50 to have my 2 headlights' hib bulbs replaced - and that didn't include the parts cost because I provided the hid bulbs from an online auto parts supplier. The symptoms were the same as noted by so many other Prius owners: Frequent loss of light from the headlight, and recovery by rotating the light switch off then on again...only to have it re-occur a few minutes later. Each headlight had its own pattern of inconsistency, but both had the dysfunction. I have received two traffic citations for driving with a headlight out. The dealerships in glen burnie, Maryland and in laurel, Maryland both quoted me a price for one hid bulb of $351.02 I was able to find the exact bulb online at partsquick.com for a price of $57.27 that's right, the dealership wanted to charge me $293.75 more per bulb. I purchased two online, which - with free shipping - cost me $114.54 for both. Do the math...for two light bulbs only (not counting labor) online I saved $587.50 had I not purchased the bulbs online, the total out-of-pocket to replace both headlamp bulbs would have been: $ $702.04 parts ($351.02 X 2) $ $332.50 labor $1,034.54 total the dealership told me they couldn't guarantee that the bulbs were the problem, nor that replacing the bulbs would solve the problem, but that Toyota instructs them to replace the bulbs first. This is insane, and certainly unsafe.

- Millersville, MD, USA

problem #4

Jul 222005


  • 50,000 miles


Right headlight quit working I got a ticket out of the deal and the Toyota dealer wants almost $1000 to fix the problem. Ridiculous the front bumper has to be removed. Many others have had the same problem sounds like a dealer recall to me.

- Colorado Springs, CO, USA

problem #3

Sep 272008


  • 77,000 miles
I was quoted $466 just for the price of my bulb for the headlight of my Toyota Prius. For a non luxury car it so expensive that a lot of people will choose to make due with their flickering one. It is outrageous that Toyota did not give a more affordable choice. It is going to be more dangerous out there.

- Tallahassee, FL, USA

problem #2

Sep 222008


  • 82,000 miles
I have a 2004 Prius and the front right headlight is working only intermittently. This happens at least three or four times a week; I haven't seen any pattern. I had my dealer check the light and its connections and I was told that the hid light bulb was not working and that it needed to be replaced and that I could only replace them as a pair. The reason being that they are somehow connected to each other and that one failing would lead to the other failing as well. The cost was an outrageous $452 each with labor and that my extended warranty doesn't cover it!

- Elgin, IL, USA

problem #1

Jul 122008


  • 101,350 miles
Driver's side high intensity discharge headlamp began switching off about a month ago. Last weekend while traveling at night, the headlamp went out about 15 times in 3 hours. Each time turning the headlamp switch off and back on temporarily solved the problem. I brought the car to the dealer and they replaced the hid bulb for $355. I had the same problem with the passenger side headlamp six months ago and replacing the bulb has solved the problem (to date). This is a disconcerting issue. I have not received an explanation as to why this occurs as opposed to a normal headlamp just burning out and then being able to replace it for twenty bucks.

- Springfield, VA, USA

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