really awful
Crashes / Fires:
5 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
52,506 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 Prius lights problems

lights problem

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2006 Toyota Prius Owner Comments (Page 18 of 40)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #453

Oct 152009


  • 67,183 miles


Hid headlights on 2006 Prius fail at random. Auto purchased in May 2006. First failure in November 2007 at 29,015 miles; right headlight. Bulb replaced by dealer at no charge. Second failure in August 2008 at 42,930 miles; left headlight. Computer sub-assembly replaced under extended warranty, bulb replaced at cost of $375 by consumer. Third failure in October 2009 at 67,183 miles; left headlight. Not repaired at this time. Sub-assembly will still be covered by extended warranty but bulb will not. This is same light that failed a year ago. I believe this is a serious safety issue. Headlights failing at night are not a good thing.

- Montpelier, VT, USA

problem #452

Nov 182009


  • 31,000 miles
Both headlights on my 2006 Toyota Prius shut off while I was driving at night.

- Tuscarora, MD, USA

problem #451

Aug 012009


  • 50,000 miles
Hid headlight on driver side started randomly turning off at about 50,000 miles on my 2006 Prius, unbeknownst to driver. If I happen to notice the light has gone out, and I turn the light switch all the way off and back on, the light will usually relight. I am constantly watching the reflection of my headlights in car bumpers on traffic traveling in front of me as well as making notice of my headlights' reflection in store windows, etc. To see if they are both on. This is extremely distracting and dangerous. Toyota dealer here in N.C. appeared to be totally oblivious to the complaints Toyota has received and said he can fix control module for $450 and replace light bulb for $135 since it is "normal wear and tear." This is not normal wear and tear. The Prius hid headlamp installation is defective. As more 2006 Prius owners like me approach the 50,000 mile mark, this defect has the potential to become far more dangerous and deadly than a loose floormat.

- Greensboro, NC, USA

problem #450

Nov 202009


  • 56,000 miles


2006 Toyota Prius headlight problem. While driving at night there was an obvious click and the headlights shut off. Turned the car off and restarted it and the headlights come back on and work for a period of time (length undetermined but this happened on more than one occasion). One or another of the head lights work intermittently.with no obvious pattern. Last night the left head light was out. I backed up the vehicle and it came back on. The same thing has happened with the right head light on occasion. There appears to be no identifiable pattern to the issue. Since this is a safety issue and my web search has indicated others are experiencing the same issue it would seem to be an item of interest that should be corrected by Toyota via a recall. The seriousness of the issue cannot be understated. Driving down the highway and having the lights go totally out for no identifiable reason is dangerous. I called the Toyota dealer and they said the head lights need to be replaced. It seems impossible for me to believe that this is the issue as the dash panel light also went out..this is not going to be corrected one customer at a time dealing with Toyota. Replacing the head lights on the Prius is a $ 450 job. $300 for the bulbs and $150 labor. I would not be concerned about the $'s if I firmly believed it was a high light issue. I was driving the vehicle and heard the click and the lights go out. I pulled of the interstate. Turned the power off and restarted the car and the headlights worked for the remainder of the trip (about 45 minutes) with no issues. This does not sound like a head light problem.

- St Simons Island, GA, USA

problem #449

Nov 192009


  • miles
I recently both a used 2006 Toyota Prius from a private seller and in more than one occasion, the headlights would go out intermittently while I'm driving - sometimes one at a time, but sometimes both would go out. I had to cycle the switch to turn them back on. Out of curiosity, I went in the internet to find out how I can fix this problem, and that's when I found out that there had been numerous cases of Prius headlight problems, particularly with 2005-2008 models. I also found out that Toyota dealerships are charging on average anywhere from $400 to $1,000 just to replace headlight bulbs, and I'm not about to fall for that. I don't believe this is a lightbulb problem because the headlights would come back on after cycling the switch. This appears to be a design problem common to '05-'08 models - something with the electrical system. This is definitely a safety issue that needs to be addressed and resolved by Toyota asap. I'm surprised that no recall has been issued yet. Is Toyota waiting for someone to die or get badly injured before they send out a recall? one can easily drive off a cliff while driving in the dark with no headlights on. (fyi, the incident date I have below is the most recent occurrence of this problem.)

- Virginia Beach, VA, USA

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problem #448

Nov 182009


  • 65,000 miles
2006 Toyota Prius headlights went out without warning about 65,000 miles. Turning switch off then on again restored light for a very short while. Then it went off again. Happened first with the right headlight 3 months ago now recently last two weeks the left headlight same problem.

- Chevy Chase, MD, USA

problem #447

Jul 012009


  • 80,000 miles


I own a 2006 Toyota Prius. One of the headlights flicks off, and then turns off while driving. I have to completely turn off both headlights and turn them back on to have the defected one to work again.

- Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #446

Nov 172009


  • 60,000 miles
Headlight stops working all of a sudden. When you turn it on then off it works again. Does this continuously, I never know when they are out.

- Euclid, OH, USA

problem #445

Aug 012006


  • 15,000 miles
Failure of hid headlights. Starting at about 15,000 miles my driver side headlight starting going out on occasion, I figured out I could turn the headlights off and on and it would reset. Other Toyota vehicles that are equipped with hid's all have on auto sensors on the headlights so one can't turn them off, not so on the Prius. I find that interesting, because if one can turn the lights off and on, one would be able to "easily" and quickly remedy the situation of not having headlights. Seems to me that Toyota knew about this problem before the car was even in the market. The problem got increasingly worse over the next 3000 miles, at times my passenger side would go out at the same time leaving me with no headlights, that's both dangerous for me and other motorists. I was going on a night drive from St cloud Minnesota through Montana in winter so I went to the dealership in St cloud mn to fix it. They told me since the light/S wasn't out at the time they couldn't do anything. I had to drive I-94 in the snow, wind, and ice with my headlights going out! I got back after the trip without the headlight on for about 50 miles just to show the dealership. After a lot of noise at the dealership they agreed to pay for the "repairs" (over $400). But since the problem didn't appear with the passenger side light they couldn't fix that. When I went back the dealership after I got pulled over for not have headlights they informed me that my manufactures original warranty was up I would have to pay the $450 it was going to cost, and my extended platinum coverage would not cover it either. The "fix" on the drivers side only lasted to about 28,000 miles which was about 5,000 miles after the "fix". ever since then I have been driving with or without headlights (it's hard to tell at night in a city!) there is so many reasons why this defect is against the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard that a recall should be issued immediately!

- St Cloud, MN, USA

problem #444

Nov 012009


  • 42,000 miles
Prius headlamp(s) intermittently go out while driving much before the lifespan of the bulb. This appears to be a widespread issue. www.hybridcars.com/forums/replacing-headlight-bulb-T910.html.

- Jackson, MO, USA

problem #443

Nov 162009


  • 59,400 miles


I purchased a new 2006 Prius in July 2006. Prior to the warranty expiring (about 30,000 miles), I noticed that one or the other head light would turn off. Turning the head lights off and on again caused the light to turn on again. I was driving to work at night on a very curvy road and both lights turned off at the same time. Turning the lights switch off and on caused the lights to come one again. The Toyota dealer admitted that there had been a batch of defective bulbs. I had the lights replaced under warranty. At 59,000 miles the same problem is starting over. Only one light at the moment, but I expect the other one to start doing the same thing. Driving with one head light is very dangerous as well as subjecting you to an equipment violation ticket.

- Livermore, CA, USA

problem #442

Sep 012009


  • 110,000 miles
2006 Toyota Prius hid head lights are suddenly turning off while driving, and to correct the problem I have to turn the lights off then back on again. But they will fail at least 30 times in a hour, while driving.

- Alta Loma, CA, USA

problem #441

Apr 172009


  • 46,690 miles
Right headlight intermittent failure. The headlight goes out intermittently without warning. Comes back on again (for awhile) when lights are switched on and off. Based on internet research, I think this is a common manufacture defect affecting safety.

- Chula Vista, CA, USA

problem #440

Nov 122009


  • 42,240 miles
At 42,000 miles, my 2006 Prius headlights will switch off while driving. The driverside hid headlight will turn off between 1:30 - 3:00 minutes of driving. The issue can be corrected by switching the lights off and turning them on again; however, the headlight will turn off again after a few minutes. At one point, the driverside headlight went out and then a few seconds later the passenger headlight went out meaning I had no running headlights on the interstate at night. Turning off and turning on the headlights corrected the issue - only to have it happen again. The headlights will turn off at any speed - 10-75 mph. The driverside headlight was replaced by the dealership as part of my used car purchase. This defect was found 4 days after purchase; the car is going back to the dealership for hopeful repair.

- Olathe, KS, USA

problem #439

Oct 152009


  • 60,000 miles
Problem with headlights in a 2006 Prius - first the diver side headlight when out intermittently and after that was replaced the passenger side headlight now goes out intermittently.

- Fairfax, VA, USA

problem #438

Oct 312009


  • 49,250 miles
I own a 2006 Toyota Prius and the hid headlight defect failure happened to us during night time driving almost causing a severe accident. This is a hazard and there are many complaints regarding this. Some one will die if this is not recalled and corrected. These headlights are advertised to have twice the lifetime of a regular headlight and go out randomly. It is very scary and is a danger to anyone driving these cars. We had the headlights replaced on 11/4/09 for a total cost of $590.32.

- Fairfield, OH, USA

problem #437

Jan 102008


  • 34,000 miles
Hid headlights fail without warning. Both my headlights failed before 36,000 miles. They were replaced within warranty, and now at 70,000 miles they are failing again. They work fine when they are first started, but can "turn off" at any time without warning.

- Mcconnellsburg, PA, USA

problem #436

Nov 082009


  • 60,000 miles
Intermittent failure of right headlamp on 2006 Toyota Prius. Headlamp goes out and various times and various driving conditions. Turning off headlamps and back on resets the headlamp. The headlamp will again go out and have to be reset.

- Thousand Oaks, CA, USA

problem #435

Jan 012009


  • 45,000 miles
2006 Toyota Prius. Beginning at approximately 45,000 miles right front hid headlight would go out without notice. By turning off the headlights and turning back on, it the headlight would relight. Started intermittently, then constantly until replacement 11/3/09 ($200). One week later, the left front headlight began doing the same thing. I drive on dark, rural roads with deer and other wildlife. This defect is extremely dangerous. Have read news reports about hundreds of complaints about this problem.

- Batavia, IL, USA

problem #434

Nov 092009


  • 51,861 miles
I have a 2006 Toyota Prius with package #8 which includes high intensity discharge (hid) headlamps. The passenger side front headlamp keeps going out. I have taken it to the Toyota dealer twice before and the tech was not able to duplicate the problem. I took photos of when the light is out as proof. I took it in again today and the tech tells me that the bulb needs to be replaced and its going to cost $500 for one lightbulb + install labor!!! I bought the platinum extended warranty which doesn't expire until Feb 2012 or 100K miles. Of course, the warranty does not cover the electrical/light issue. The light sometimes works. There is no rhyme or reason why it does some of the time and not others. This appears to be a defect which Toyota should do something about. It's a major safety issue. I am fearful of driving at night because it is unsafe and I can't rely on the light to work. I took it to another Toyota dealer this afternoon and that tech says I need to replace the hid computer for ~ $1,000. Are you kidding me??

- Buena Park, CA, USA

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