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 31 of 40)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #193

Jan 052009


  • 30,000 miles


A year ago, my 2006 Toyota Prius' right headlamp would go out intermittently. Toyota replaced the bulb and bulb computer at a cost of just under $1000. That time was covered under warranty. I had approx. 30K miles on the car. Now, in Feb. 2008, I'm having the same problem with the left headlamp. Since there is no longer warranty coverage, I complained to Toyota headquarters. They admitted that the older bulbs were no good and agreed to replace the bulb but not pay for the labor. Since this is a safety issue, I have no choice but to pay the $280 labor cost. There is now 45K miles on the car.

- Mentone, CA, USA

problem #192

Sep 172008


  • 58,000 miles
My driver's side headlight occasionally turns off. I have a 2006 Toyota Prius with hid headlights. This is a common problem with the 06 and newer Prius and is affecting thousands of people. Some have had both lights fail leaving them with no headlights. If you turn the lights off and then back on the light or lights will turn back for a very short period of time. This is clearly a safety issue and instead of fixing the problem for free, Toyota is charging an absurd amount to fix the problem which could be temporary. Many have had the headlights fail again. This problem is very common and can be easily found on chat rooms and forums online.

- Carmichael, CA, USA

problem #191

Sep 102008


  • 58,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Prius. The contact stated that the vehicle has hid (high intensity lights) that would not operate correctly. The driver's side headlight would operate momentarily when the vehicle was started, but then dim after a matter of minutes. The dealer estimated the repair cost to be over $600. The contact also filed a claim with the manufacturer and is awaiting a decision. The failure mileage was 58,000 and current mileage was 64,000.

- Carmichael, CA, USA

problem #190

Nov 012008


  • 49,000 miles


I own a 2006 Prius with hid headlights. After 50,000 miles, the passenger side bulb will go out after being on for 20 minutes or so. If I turn the lights off and back on, the bulb lights up right away and then blinks off approximately 20 minutes later. If I was going down the highway at night, this would be a safely hazard. I called Toyota corporate. They said this is a know issue, but no recall has been down yet. They stated that as of 1/2008, the bulbs have been redesigned to not have this problem. They said since my car was out of warranty that they would pay for the bulb (approximately $150), and I would have to pay for labor. Labor, depending on where you get the repair done, could be anywhere from $50 to $300, just for one headlight replacement. Since I didn't buy the extended warranty this issue was not covered. I agreed that Toyota would pay for the bulb. I had the bulb replaced. I paid for the labor and they paid for the bulb. There should be a recall on the old bulbs!

- Crownsville, MD, USA

problem #189

Feb 012009


  • 10,000 miles
Toyota has a major issue with headlamps failing intermittently on 2006 and new priuses rather than fixing the issue, they're charging customers upwards of a $1000 to replace (2) *defective* headlamp bulbs. It may not seem like a major issue, however I almost got in an accident with another Prius owner on the freeway, who was driving both lights out. After experiencing the same exact thing in my own Prius, it's a very scary scenario. There are thousands of documented cases: priuschat.com/forums/care-maintenance-troubleshooting/34584-headlight-problem.html forums.mercurynews.com/topic/roadshow-cost-to-replace-on-and-off-Prius-headlights-can-run-950-mdash-or-nothing please do not allow Toyota to keep screwing consumers into paying for $1000 bulb replacements. There are many people out there gambling with intermittent lamps due to the high replacement cost.

- Simi Valley, CA, USA

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problem #188

Feb 012009


  • 82,000 miles
Just a few hundred miles shy of the 36,000 mile warranty (just on the headlights), my left side headlight went out. When flipping the high beams on did not light the offending bulb (I did not at the time realize that hid headlamps do not have separate high and low beam filaments, but simply change the Focus of the one hid capsule.), I immediately stopped into a parts store and bought a replacement bulb (non-hid). I did think it strange that the lights both went back on when I got back into the car, but I decided that I should replace it anyway. On the next day, I removed the offending bulb (not as difficult as some people seem to think) and discovered that it was some sort of rare-earth discharge lamp. Because this type of illumination system should be very reliable (there being no fragile filament to fatigue and break), I figured that I just had the bad fortune to run into a rare case of infant mortality, or just a defective bulb to begin with. Although the bulb can be relighted (by switching headlights off and on), it must be distracting to other drivers, not to mention: What if I turn off the lights to relight one and both decide not to reignite. What then? this is a serious safety issue! fortunately, I got both lights replaced (the right side went shortly thereafter) under warranty. (plus $80 labor) now, at 82K miles, here we go again. This time, I called Toyota. I could get absolutely no commitment out of the representative, but he insisted that my local dealership must diagnose the problem before he could make a decision on a "possible reimbursement." I took the car in yesterday, with the headlight out. They cleaned the contacts and sent me on my way. Before I arrived home, the light was out, so I drove right back. They looked and said: "yup, it's out." So I left. Now the rep says I should have stayed!

- Lexington Park, MD, USA

problem #187

Feb 022009


  • 45,000 miles


Just like it seems the hundreds of other 2006 Toyota Prius owners. I have been having intermittent headlight failures for many months. Initially it was only in the passenger side. Now it also occurs on the drivers side or even more dangerous on both at the same time. This is happening with more and more frequency. The first time I had the dealer look at the problem, they found nothing, just recommended replacing a very expensive bulb. I took it back a few months later and they said they found something in the passenger side (not the drivers although it is now happening on both). Once again they recommended replacing the bulb. They didn't give me any confidence that it would resolve the problem. It seems to me with this many complaints spanning that continue to come in, something should be done. Does there need to be a serious injury or death before someone takes action to figure out what is going on and resolve this issue. I'm afraid to drive my car in bad weather, or in the dark because I never know when the headlights are going to go out. Yesterday I didn't even make it out of the driveway before they went out (they would not come back on when I turned them off then on).

- Blacklick, OH, USA

problem #186

Jan 022009


  • 36,012 miles
Toyota 2006 Prius hid headlight. Hid headlight works intermittently. It comes when lights are turned on then goes out suddenly. Turns lights off and on cause the light to burn again. As time goes by have to do this more frequently. The left light problem was solved by replacing the bulb (expensive). Now the right light is beginning to have the same problem. I looked on the internet and see that many other people experiencing the same problem. One person is experiencing it with their second set of bulbs. I feel Toyota has an issue as the bulbs should last 10 years.

- Richmond, VA, USA

problem #185

Jan 312009


  • 53,755 miles
I have a 2006 Toyota Prius. The headlight goes off intermittently and I only can tell if I am looking at the reflection in the back of another vehicle. Both the driver and passenger side headlights cut in-and-out. When I turn the lights off and on again, the lights come back on but they don't always stay on. They can go out again during driving at night -- it is very dangerous. The problem has been going on for over a year. Toyota needs to step up and take care of this customer safety issue now.

- Pacifica, CA, USA

problem #184

Jan 012009


  • 40,000 miles
I purchased a used 2006 Prius with 16,000 miles. I now have 44,000 miles and I began to notice my hid headlights dimming, first one then the other. It has now progressed to the where they turn off completely. Toyota does not seem to have a sure way of diagnosing the problem, leading to upwards of $2,600 to troubleshoot. This is a ridiculous amount to pay for headlights and seems, according to the chats, to be a pervasive problem. This now occurs ever time I turn on the lights. Within 15 minutes they go out. If I turn the light switch on and off they come back on for a bit, then go out again.

- Galt, CA, USA

problem #183

Jul 112006


  • 40,000 miles


My Toyota 2006 Prius has intermittent headlight failures. The dealership claims to be unaware of the problem and has changed the bulbs, but the problem continues. I have taken it to the dealer about 9 times and they continue to tell me it is bulbs despite bulb and entire headlamp assembly replacement. I continue to be pulled over by the police as a result.

- Fredericksburg, TX, USA

problem #182

Jan 152009


  • 40,000 miles
2006 Prius hid headlights are failing, they just go dim and then turn off. Turning them off and on will cause them to run for a little while longer, but eventually they fail again.

- Orinda, CA, USA

problem #181

Jan 272009


  • 39,000 miles
Intermittent headlight problem. Light comes on and goes off. Very dangerous situation. Taken to dealer, charged for repair, problem persists. This seems to be very common on many Toyota Prius cars. Now have 80,00 miles and problem is back. Internet shows this is common problem?

- Santa Maria, CA, USA

problem #180

Jan 282009


  • 72,000 miles
Both of my hid headlights needed replacement after less than two years (first the passenger side, then the drivers side). The lights went out while I was driving. If I flicked my headlight switch, they came back on. The longer I waited, the more frequently they turned off, so I'm forced to replace them.. these are extremely expensive replacements (in excess of 400 each). There is apparently a pattern of these problems with this make / model.

- Quogue, NY, USA

problem #179

Jan 232009


  • 35,000 miles
I have a 2006 Prius. While under warranty, my passenger headlight began to go out. If you cut the light off and back on it would work again. Eventually, the driver's lamp would go off as well, which happened at night. Turning the lights off then back on would get them both back working. The dealer replaced a computer to fix the problem. I do not know if they changed the bulbs also. My car now has 55,000 miles and the passenger headlight is doing the same thing.

- Marietta, GA, USA

problem #178

Jan 052009


  • 49,000 miles
I have a Toyota Prius 2006. Its headlight bulbs are not working. Lights go on and off. Sometimes we don't even know if they are off and other drivers blink us on the road to warn. Toyota dealership is telling us that we need new headlight bulbs. I have extended warranty through Toyota. Toyota denied coverage from my bulb replacement. This problem has been reported by many Prius owners. Toyota needs to recall the defective bulbs and take responsibility for this defective part. This is a dangerous neglect by Toyota and can result in serious injuries and damages to its customers.

- Williamsville, NY, USA

problem #177

Sep 152008


  • 60,000 miles
I have a 2006 Toyota Prius with hid head lights go out while your driving, if you turn them off and back on they come back on. I just spent a hour at the local dealership and they could not tell me the real answer to the problem but were happy to suggest replacing the head lights at the cost of $500 a piece. This seams unreasonable to spend this kind of money to provide a safety feature.

- Golden, CO, USA

problem #176

Jan 262009


  • 22,000 miles
2006 Toyota Prius both head light (bulbs) burned out, one the first year and now the other (2) total first cost $300 the second one the price has dropped to $150 this is not acceptable.

- Santa Maria, CA, USA

problem #175

Jan 232009


  • 24,907 miles
Hid headlight on 2006 Prius goes out intermittently. Turning lights off and on can make it go on again. Dealer is not motivated to find the problem. This is primarily a safety issue. It is not safe to have a headlamp that fails intermittently.

- Lexington Ma, MA, USA

problem #174

Jun 012008


  • 70,000 miles
Headlamp on my 2006 Toyota Prius sporadically goes out while driving. Sometimes its own for 2 minutes, other times its own for 30 minutes. This is a safety issue. Had the lamp replaced for $300 and still having the same problem. Now Toyota is telling me it's the computer $1100. Many members of online forums are having the same issue and its determined that Toyota does not know what wrong. Average loss is $1500 for replacement parts and labor and the problem continues.

- Spring Valley, CA, USA

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