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Grumpy Cabbie

Gen3 (2009-) Prius Egr Failure At 79,000 Miles

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Had another break down with my gen3 Prius. This time the car started misfiring, banging, knocking and generally misbehaving itself. Got it over to the dealers sharpish and turns out the EGR valve was shot.

Not a warranty item I understand and a cool £425 to investigate and replace.

This car is proving an expensive experiment for me (and Toyota too);

On my THIRD steering motor (all replaced under warranty)

Have HV Battery ECU replaced (warranty)

Had the inverter replaced (part goodwill from Toyota and part payment from me)

And now the EGR valve (paid for in full by me)

(new brake pump replaced under recall - not a cheap part with intensive labour costs)

The car hasn't even hit 80,000 miles yet. This is poor. The gen3 Prius is not following the marvelous reliability record of the rock solid gen2. Bizarre that Toyota took a backwards step for reliability. Wonder if that's why they only offered a 60,000 mile warranty originally?

The car has also been displaying symptoms of HV Battery failure in that the charge is cycling very quickly and frequently drops to 2/8 bars with minimual ev use. Dealers say it tested fine, so we'll see, but with reports of gen3 HV Battery failure between 80,000 and 120,000 miles on the Priuschat forum, I am a little concerned.

Appreciate those who've never experienced a problem with down play my comments, but just because you haven't had a problem, doesn't mean others haven't.

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(new brake pump replaced under recall - not a cheap part with intensive labour costs)

Don't remember that one.

The only recall I have had was the software mod where the car would 'float' when braking as you hit a bump.

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I have to admit that I have only ever heard of EGR failures on diesel engines. In particular, I know a local cab driver who runs a 07-plate Avensis diesel and he just replaces the EGR valve every 30k miles, instead of it getting cleaned, as it is cheaper for him to do so (he's an ex-truck mechanic). That said, even with your mileage I'm surprised that a hybrid petrol engine would have produced enough carbon to cause it fail. I'm assuming here that the failure was caused by the gate becoming either stuck open or shut by the a build up of carbon. Once again, I'm really surprised as having read your posts over the years I know that you keep your Prius in tip-top condition as it's your livelihood.

As an aside, I haven't tried the petrol version of this product but I used Wynn's EGR cleaner on my previous car, Nissan Note diesel, after 25k miles and it worked really well. Fuel economy improved slightly and the throttle response was a lot better. I don't think my 2nd generation Prius actually has an EGR valve. If I am wrong, someone please tell me....

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As I don't know either...it means I'll be getting some Wynn's EGR cleaner to be on the safe side. Thanks for the link.

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(new brake pump replaced under recall - not a cheap part with intensive labour costs)

Don't remember that one.

The only recall I have had was the software mod where the car would 'float' when braking as you hit a bump.

Well double check with your dealer then. About 6 months ago I got a brand new brake pump installed under a recall. It is an expensive part (£1,500?) and took about 3 hours labour. The pumping noise when you open a door to first get in the car is now much quieter and quicker. There is also a very shiney new part low down behind the inverter. :)

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I have to admit that I have only ever heard of EGR failures on diesel engines. In particular, I know a local cab driver who runs a 07-plate Avensis diesel and he just replaces the EGR valve every 30k miles, instead of it getting cleaned, as it is cheaper for him to do so (he's an ex-truck mechanic). That said, even with your mileage I'm surprised that a hybrid petrol engine would have produced enough carbon to cause it fail. I'm assuming here that the failure was caused by the gate becoming either stuck open or shut by the a build up of carbon. Once again, I'm really surprised as having read your posts over the years I know that you keep your Prius in tip-top condition as it's your livelihood.

The car has a full Toyota service history so if anything was lacking... :)

I guess it must be the on, off, on, off, start stop town driving that caused the engine to coke up. I use a branded petrol and have been known to use the odd injector cleaner at service.

With hindsight, an early indication of this failure was a slight hesitation when the car switched from ev to petrol. When the car was new it was seemless for the engine to come on. Well the last 20,000 miles there has been a hesitation under acceleration that got worse and worse. I thought it might have been a Battery issue as the HV Battery was discharging significantly and quickly and barely charging back up. The economy bombed though the car drove ok on a run.

All else seemed ok and I just took it that it was an age or wear and tear issue until the car started knocking, kept the engine running continuously and the idle was up and down - almost stalling to revving about 2,000 rpm. Took it straight to the dealers and dumped it outside for them to look at the next morning.

Since the new egr valve has been fitted the car is much more driveable and the transition from ev to petrol is smooth again just like new. The first day the car acted strange in that it ran the engine a lot more often and did rev quite high but that has since settled down so I guess it was just recalibrating itself. Oh, economy has gone back up again :)

Time will tell.

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Well double check with your dealer then. About 6 months ago I got a brand new brake pump installed under a recall. It is an expensive part (£1,500?) and took about 3 hours labour.

Maybe it was this one

http://pressroom.toyota.com/releases/toyota+lexus+voluntary+recall+2010+prius+lexus+hs+250h+june4.htm

Will ask about it.

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Well double check with your dealer then. About 6 months ago I got a brand new brake pump installed under a recall. It is an expensive part (£1,500?) and took about 3 hours labour.

Maybe it was this one

http://pressroom.toyota.com/releases/toyota+lexus+voluntary+recall+2010+prius+lexus+hs+250h+june4.htm

Will ask about it.

That looks like the one. Maybe mine had a crack in it? Or maybe they just missed you. It figures mine needed doing as pretty much everything else has been replaced on the car. Just got the engine, the transaxel and HV Battery to go and then I'll have a new car :)

Toyota shouldn't expect any glowing reviews from me on Prius reliability though. Grrr

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