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3 Signs You Should Sell Your Toyota Prius

If we get right down to it, nothing lasts forever, including the Toyota Prius. The hard part is not if you get rid of it, but when. Here are 3 signs you should dump your old Prius and get a new one.


I bought my Prius as a research project, I am into it pretty cheap. While it is not getting the best fuel mileage it could, I am still nearly 10 miles per gallon better than my previous commuter.

I can keep fixing the ol' gal forever it would seem, that is, if I really wanted to. I had the thought today about Prius owners that are not mechanical or have an understanding about the car, but love them anyway. Who is helping them out huh? Make no mistake that at some point your Prius will be ready for the recyclers, though when, is the question we need an answer too.

Here are 3 signs it may be time to put your old Prius out to pasture and look forward to getting a new one.

Your Prius Is Consuming Oil Even After Treatments
I have written two, no wait, three articles on Toyota Prius oil consumption. The first one being about replacing a part called a PCV valve, check out that story here. The other two are about treatments from BG products that claim to fix oil consumption, and also a follow up story when I was about halfway through the study on my findings.

BG Hybrid repair kit for toyota prius oil consumption issue

These stories illustrate a growing concern among Prius owners. Their cars are consuming oil and they are afraid to have the engine burn up due to lack of lubrication. Many owners will try just about anything to get their car to stop, or reduce oil consumption. If this is you and your Prius is still costing you more in oil than gas, it is time to move on.

The good news is that even selling your oil consumer private party can yield a pretty hefty chunk of change. Prius holds good value even with problems. Hopefully you can get a few thousand out of it and put it down on something like a new 2020 AWD-e.

Your Prius Keeps Having Many Nickel And Dime Issues
Traction battery problems are only one of several issues that Prius owners can face. I once wrote and article on 5 common repairs that many 2nd generation owners can expect to have. If you own a 2004-2009 Prius, for sure check out that article here.

In that article I talk about some of the heavy costs of what Prius cars can have. A traction battery, even thought costs have come down, could still run you around $2,000+ dollars. The ABS pump could be right along those same lines as well.

Toyota prius repair traction hybrid battery complete tear down

Even if you dumped 3 to 5,000 dollars into the car, you may feel as if it just is not the same anymore. You would be accurate in saying that. Once we start having to really put money into our Prius', it may seem like it never stops. While some owners are reporting excellent low maintenance on their cars, this does not mean that it is not subject to fault.

If your Prius keeps wanting more lunch money, consider a trade in or even a private party sale. If you are like my wife, she cannot live without a car that is less than 8 years old. Some people are this way, and there is no problem with that. Typically you never really have to worry about a car that is only a few years old. If that is appealing, then it is time to let your old one go and pick up something a little newer.

Watch these 3 reasons to sell your Toyota Prius in a brief video report and click to subscribe to Torque News Youtube channel for daily automotive news analysis.

Remember all the repairs add up over time, so for sure take this into consideration before you just dump it for a newer model year.

Your Prius Does Not Get Driven Enough
Short commute? No commute? Never drive the car? Letting the Prius sit for long periods of time is actually more detrimental than it is helpful. While not using the car seems as if it will keep it pristine, it can lead to battery degradation and unwanted oil leaks.

2007 red toyota prius sitting in the grass not being driven, JDM wheels

If you Prius sits, consider letting it go to someone who will use it to its full potential. Plus, freeing up that money may allow you to drive the new 2020 Prime, which is designed to be able to site far more than your regular Prius. Just a thought.

Watch our 3 reasons that you should consider selling your Toyota Prius and click to subscribe to Torque News Youtube channel for daily automotive news tips.

Look, I get it, I own a pretty awesome 2007 Prius, but if I am really digging deep down, I know I want a gen 3 or newer to get the updates and styling that a more modern Prius can bring. As I always say, to each their own, and do what you feel is best for you. If your Prius is giving you trouble, remember there are plenty more of them waiting for you to take one home.

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Also Watch New tech means more MPG from your Toyota Prius and Click to Subscribe to Torque News Youtube Channel for Daily Toyota Prius and Automotive News.

Peter Neilson is an automotive consultant specializing in electric cars and hybrid battery technologies. He is an automotive technology instructor at Columbia Basin College. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Automotive Service Technology from Weber State University. Peter is also an Adjunct Instructor of automotive technology at Columbia Basin College. Peter can be reached on Linkedin and you can tweet him at The_hybrid_guy on Twitter.


Juan Marco (not verified)    October 10, 2019 - 1:17PM

My 2007 Prius's A/C went out last year, but it's still driving strong at 50-52 MPG during the summer, and a few less during the winter. It's got 333,000 Miles on it currently. It burns about a quart of oil every 2,500 miles, and I use synthetic oil and change it out about every 15,000 miles.

Michael BERGER (not verified)    October 10, 2019 - 9:29PM

The only thing good about a prius is cheap mileage.

Putting a couple grand into one doesn't make sense.

The oil treat is just thick oil. The start stop motor needed special oil like in a Volt, but never got it. So each start causes wear.

Ugly and dead dog slow.

There are better options.

Sigrid (not verified)    December 28, 2022 - 9:09PM

We have a Prius 2010 and had a new battery $ 4000 put in at 120,000. Can't remember what the problem was. The car dealers repair people just recommended it. Being to old people, we went with it, because we do love this vehicle. Everythings seems to work ok but it starts to get rattling, not the engine the car, the inside or whatever. I think we are just tired of it and are looking to buy a Kia Rio 20,000 mi for 15,000. We are wondering if we are doing the right thing. We are both in the early 80s. Thank you! After checking, car guru is offering $ 9,000 for a car that has 131,000 miles, but got a new battery.
Thank you for your comments.