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infinitenexus
infinitenexus GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/17/19 2:14 p.m.

I agree.  Whoever designed the rear end should be fired.  Although the new plug in version does have twice the electric-only range as mine.  That's okay that, mine isn't ugly.

jfryjfry
jfryjfry Dork
6/17/19 5:19 p.m.

I’m shocked that it has new front brakes.  Well, assuming it needed them.  Ours has 160k orig brakes that look about 1/2 remaining. 

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
6/18/19 7:04 a.m.

In reply to jfryjfry :

I too was questioned the need for brake pads that early on a Prius. My Prius has 130k on the original brake pads.  This just leads me to believe that the used car dealership was not a Toyota dealership.  It is pretty common in the used car lot world to add new front brake pads and 4 new tires to the cars going on the lot.  Sure they are often cheap pads and cheap tires but they "look good."  

Though, we are not really sure how many miles are on this Prius

infinitenexus
infinitenexus GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/18/19 7:49 a.m.

It was the used section of an Audi dealership down in Annapolis.  They gave us a paper with all the service they did to it before putting it up for sale - oil change with synthetic, front brakes, wipers, the usual stuff like that and they also apparently installed a new drivers side interior door panel.  Tires are about 50% tread on the back, still good on the front.  I don't have the paperwork in front of me but that's what I remember off the top of my head.  The car is solid though, not a creak or squeak anywhere, drives straight and smooth.  I got 62 mpg this morning coming in to work.  

 

We learned the hard way that those dumb charging timers can interfere with the charge.  My wife set both the start and stop timers yesterday and plugged it in, so of course the car didn't charge.  This morning I told her to leave the timers off, and so it charged right up in no time.  So now on the drive home today, which is half city, we should be in full EV mode for that, then just a short stint on the highway so I think if we're careful we can edge up close to 100mpg on the drive home.

 

Also read that Prii can benefit from an oil catch can.  I have one for my Mustang, just need to put it on.

Aspen
Aspen HalfDork
6/18/19 8:48 a.m.

You might try using EV for highway instead.  The hybrid does its best at about 60-70kph in reasonably flowing city traffic.  Crawling in stop and go would likely be better in EV as well.

I read about a guy with a Lexus CT200h that got over 300k miles on his brake pads working as a courier.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/18/19 9:01 a.m.

On the highway I'll be doing around 65mph most of the time (give or take) and the electric motor only powers up to 62.  And there's some mild hills, just enough where full EV wouldn't really work.  But I can still easily average 50mpg on the highway stint with the ICE, just driving calmly.  But the first half of our afternoon commute home is all slow, stop-and-go, so that's where the electric motor is really going to shine.  I think all combined, we can average over 100mpg on the trip home, using EV mode for the city parts.  Just got to convince SWMBO to accelerate a bit more slowly haha.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/19/19 11:15 a.m.

So one of the big benefits of the plug in version is the extended (~12 miles) electric only range.  It helps quite a bit.  On our morning commute this morning, which is half highway and half stop-and-go city, we averaged 96mpg!  With less hills on the highway we could have gotten over 100.

chada75
chada75 Reader
6/19/19 5:30 p.m.

Not to Hijack the Thread. I want a Prius for the Taxi Business but concern about during any DIY repair since I work on my own rides. Anybody here have a prius that they work on themselves?

infinitenexus
infinitenexus GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/20/19 6:26 a.m.

From what I've read, they seem to do very well in taxi situations.  As far as working on them yourself, I have also read that you can totally do that.  Even the battery - when the battery is "bad" it's often just a cell or two, and you can replace that in your driveway with some patience and rubber gloves.  The cells are like $30 each on eBay.  And remember to change the transmission fluid every 50K miles to keep the generator happy.  I've read that the second generation ones are the most reliable, and they're super cheap these days.  I see them regularly for 4 grand and less.  I would recommend the third generation, as the slightly larger engine helps around town, and they're rated for a couple extra mpg.  

infinitenexus
infinitenexus GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/20/19 6:26 a.m.

Also got 102mpg this morning on our 12 mile commute!

dculberson
dculberson UltimaDork
6/20/19 6:36 a.m.

I've worked on a friend's Prius a few times, and it's like working on any other Toyota, with a few more subsystems added in there.

Woody
Woody GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/20/19 7:11 a.m.

I have no desire to own a Prius, but I would really like to own a CT200h.

Following.

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
6/20/19 7:24 a.m.

I've "worked" on my own Prius (Gen2's) 

From 80k to the current 133k that has consisted of:

  • light bulb change
  • Optima battery replacement (12v, not the hybrid)
  • replace tires
  • air filter

My point being that nothing has really broke or needed fixing.  I will agree, I have not been the best at preventive maint.  Sure, I check the oil but I have not replaced any fluids.  Coolant and trans fluids could probably be due.  I have considered that I will need brakes soon.  It actually amazes me that I do not.  I have sort of considered doing them anyway before the harshness of winter sets in just to get the nagging concern out of the way.  I have not done struts but the struts are not complaining either.  

I do oil at 10k intervals w/ full synthetic. Actually, I don't due it but rather have a dedicated shop that does it for me at a good rate.  

I also like that the 15" tires are cheap.  I have been buying 65k mile rated Falken tires and after rebates and watching specials, I have gotten them fully mounted to the car for less than $70.  I run real winter tires and they too are cheap.    

 

My Prius #1 did leave me stranded roadside once.  All the dash lights came on. The engine would not fire.  My Torque App for Prius was not really helping.  I finally bit the bullet and sent it to the dealership.  IT was a hefty $600 bill to find out/fix the fact that I had some wiring harness damage that seems to have resulted from some rodent damage.  It sucked at that point that I had few other options for heavy diagnostics other than the dealership.  My small town doesn't offer an independent who is a Prius expert.  However, even with eating that $600 bill, the Prius cost of operation has been delightfully low.  

morello159
morello159 Reader
6/20/19 7:39 a.m.

Tires are about 50% tread on the back, still good on the front

I just want to point out that, if this is still the case, you need to rotate your tires so that the new ones are on the back, especially if you live anywhere that it rains. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/20/19 7:47 a.m.

From what I've read, a majority of Prius owners pretty much just have to change tires, oil, brake pads, and that's enough for 200K miles.  Sometimes people will need one or two more things, but these cars just seem to go forever.  I've read about NYC taxis going 500-700K miles, on the original battery pack as well.  I feel like we bought one of the few cars that's more reliable than my wife's previous Civic.  The maintenance is nearly non-existent, although I'll make sure to change the transmission fluid every 50K miles to keep the generator happy.  We realized that as long as we take good care of it, there's a realistic chance that we can keep this car and give it to our kid as their first car - and we don't even have a kid yet.  And we're moving down to Florida, so rusty salty winters won't be an issue for us either.

 

This gas mileage is addictive, too.  Sometimes I find myself wanting to sell my Mustang GT so I can buy my own cheap Prius (and use the leftover money to finance a challenge car, heh).  

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
6/20/19 8:06 a.m.

Then Gen1 Prius came out in 2001.  Since then they have improved the system but in general, the system is the same (with the exception of the plug in version which was never their mainstream offering.)  What I am getting at is that Toyota has figured this game out.  

However, just yesterday, I came across this ad and opinion article that Toyota is getting left behind. 

https://electrek.co/2019/02/12/toyota-anti-electric-vehicle-ad-corolla-hybrid/

Speculation is that the Prius name will be retired soon as Toyota begins to offer a Hybrid option across its whole line of vehicles like Corolla, Rav4, etc. 

Said another way... The PRius being the "car of the future" is really a nearly 20 yr old sentiment.  And, I agree because Gen2 Prius, the "wizz-bangs" of 2004 have become the old news of 2019.  This makes me happy because the are cheap enough now.  It used to be 40 mpg was amazing.  Now, you can get into that range w/ regular engines like Hyundai Elantras of 2011 and newer.  

infinitenexus
infinitenexus GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/20/19 8:32 a.m.

Oh my car of the future comment was mostly from a review video I watched right before we bought this, where the reviewer commented on the interior of the second and third gens and said they felt like cars from the future and that the interior was more like a spaceship.  So a bit tongue in cheek.  More accurate would be the car of MY future, because when we move I'll probably pick up a used second gen for 3 grand and enjoy getting 50mpg while commuting comfortably to work, instead of 15mpg or less in stop and go traffic in my mustang with harsh riding suspension.  I'm sure the new ones will be great but personally I'm a big supporter of buying used cars.  Driving a used car is going to use less resources than what would take to build a new one, especially a car with all these lithium ion batteries, and wow I sound like such a hippy right now haha.  Brb, gonna go eat tofu and do yoga at work.

Fitz
Fitz New Reader
6/20/19 1:19 p.m.

I bought an 08 with 185k ish miles that now has 200k from Copart. Had a cooling issue that a distilled water flush fixed and a torn CV Boot when I bought it. Now one of the hubs/bearings is making noise. Everything else has been fine and all of the records from toyota (toyota.com/owners portal is great btw) show only normal maintenance other than the cooling issue that sent it to auction. I think the front pads were done at 160k fwiw.

That said, I'm probably going to sell it soon. I cannot get a comfortable driving position in the thing and I need something I can spend 2+ hours day driving (6'2" with a long torso doesn't work in a lot of cars). Apart from that it's been great, getting 44 mpg with no effort at all towards maximizing efficiency.

calteg
calteg Dork
6/20/19 4:59 p.m.

I gave up an joined the Prius crew two weeks ago with a badly hail damaged 2013 Prius C. Seller undersold the mileage by quite a bit with "39 MPG" written proudly in soap on the windshield. Thus far, my worst trip has been 40mpg, with a best of 66.6mpg. Still on my first tank of gas, with a tank average of 52mpg. 

Of course, the very first things I did was look up ways to mod it. Not really a lot out there, aside from running 45psi in the tires, and using 0w fluids. Apparently if you're in a colder climate, blocking off part of the front bumper with a pool noodle will help the motor warm up more quickly. 

Technology is so strange, for a long, long time my go-to dd beater was a late 90's Corolla, and I was delighted to get 32mpg out of those. Nearly doubling the gas mileage for the same buy in seems like I'm living in the future

cdeforrest
cdeforrest New Reader
6/20/19 5:25 p.m.

I had a surprise in a not-mine 2009 Prius I drive occasionally when a front tire went flat on the freeway.  No big deal right? Put on the spare.

Wellll..its a donut and the ABS/VSC doesn't like mismatched front wheels over maybe 25 mph. So that wasn't happening on the freeway. 

Quick check of the manual and Google didn't get me anywhere aside from a few non-applicable Konami codes for a later generation.  I did what any reasonable person would do, which was NOT to swap the spare to the rear, but to pull the ABS fuse (fuses? It was a while ago, but I figured it out pretty quickly roadside.) Now we're in business!  One short skid and soiled underwear later I got the hang of it.  This car seems very touchy without all of its e-nannies working properly. 

So..you probably want to put the spare on the rear. I can only assume that the car would play nice with that, considering Toyota put them out into the world with the baby spare.  Fullsize spare would be ideal - not sure if it fits into the tire well.  

Vigo
Vigo MegaDork
6/20/19 8:10 p.m.

Anybody here have a prius that they work on themselves?

I may be one of the more experienced Prius DIYers on this forum since mine required me to take off the bumper cover to replace a $54 electric coolant pump. At 270k+ miles. Other than that tires oil blah blah.  

Aspen
Aspen HalfDork
6/20/19 9:34 p.m.

This thread is making me sad that I traded my 45mpg CT200 for an 18 mpg on premium M240i for the same stop and go commute.  Oh well YOLO.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/21/19 7:24 a.m.
cdeforrest said:

I had a surprise in a not-mine 2009 Prius I drive occasionally when a front tire went flat on the freeway.  No big deal right? Put on the spare.

Wellll..its a donut and the ABS/VSC doesn't like mismatched front wheels over maybe 25 mph. So that wasn't happening on the freeway. 

Quick check of the manual and Google didn't get me anywhere aside from a few non-applicable Konami codes for a later generation.  I did what any reasonable person would do, which was NOT to swap the spare to the rear, but to pull the ABS fuse (fuses? It was a while ago, but I figured it out pretty quickly roadside.) Now we're in business!  One short skid and soiled underwear later I got the hang of it.  This car seems very touchy without all of its e-nannies working properly. 

So..you probably want to put the spare on the rear. I can only assume that the car would play nice with that, considering Toyota put them out into the world with the baby spare.  Fullsize spare would be ideal - not sure if it fits into the tire well.  

Thanks for the tip.  Mine is the plug in version, so it doesn't even have a spare - it has more batteries where the spare would be.  Instead it comes with an air compressor and some fix-a-flat type garbage that apparently ruins the tire when you use it.  So I'm going to pick up a donut spare and keep it in a clean bag in the back, to stay safe.  Probably put an inexpensive tire patch kit in the back as well.

cdeforrest
cdeforrest New Reader
6/21/19 9:20 a.m.

In reply to infinitenexus :

Yep my i3 had no spare so I did the same and found a little collapsible Mercedes spare that fit. Plug kit, fixaflat and a compressor came with the car at least. I’d been towed twice for flats before I got the spare. Oh and a jack!  Can’t forget that. 

pheller
pheller UltimaDork
3/3/20 10:59 a.m.

So I'm eyeing a 3rd Gen Prius for $750 (or lower if I want to try) I think it's got about 165,000 miles, but I'm really not sure because it's currently in a no-start no-dash lights no-nothing situation. It's in fairly good condition otherwise. No exterior damage, interior in decent shape. 

The seller is clueless about the car's history. It showed up at his (towing) lot with a clear title and keys. He suspects the previous owner just gave up on the car for some reason. He's not inclined to put much effort into it - he's got a whole lineup of running cars he's selling cheap and this Prius is a mystery. 

A VIN search yields nothing of interest. Last sold in 2015 here in town with 118,000 for $12k. 

I suspect the AGM battery is dead and possibly a fuse. At worst is a wiring issue or shorted ECM. Should I aim for lower price?

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