I have not ever heard of a Prius owner who likes to have more noise in their vehicle. I am one of those people. I recently bought my 9th Prius from auction to give to someone that needed a car.
As I always do, I check everything over before the car leaves my care and enters into someone else's hands. This car had a banged-up fender and hood, which were replaced during the time it was in my hands.
There was something else though that was bothering me. This Prius was louder than my others, and for the life of me, I could not figure out why. That was until I noticed something that many of us probably would not. This Prius was different.
How My New Prius Was Different
Buying any used car can be a gamble. Luckily for me, I understand these cars well enough to be able to troubleshoot their problems.
When I drove this one home, it was louder. I could hear more of the engine. I figured that it was due to the hood not fitting correctly and did not think much of it further.
I was wrong, though. After replacing the hood and fender, the noise persisted, and it was driving me crazy. Thank goodness that I like fixing things. I began to figure out the issue.
What The Issue Was
The issue was something that I did not expect. It was the windshield. I noticed that it had been replaced, and it was not a Toyota grade.
I knew this was the issue due to my time spent at Toyota HQ learning the quality built into its products. Windshields were one of the things that I was able to learn about.
How Toyota Makes Sound Resistant Windhields
Consumers have demanded safer and quieter cars over the years. One of the ways this is achieved is layering the glass with sound-absorbing material.
The multi-layered windows reduce sound and help with other things like UV penetration as well. This is a fundamental idea of how they are made.
The idea here is that the process in which they are made costs more than what an aftermarket glass manufacturer does. So to cut down on costs, the cheaper alternatives do not focus on Toyota's level quality.
If you have and aftermarket windshield in your Prius, you may have a louder ride than expected. If you are looking to get yours replaced, make sure you know what you are buying before choosing the cheapest option.
I hope this helps all you Prius owners out there! Have a great day, and see you in the next story.
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Peter Neilson is an automotive consultant specializing in electric cars and hybrid battery technologies. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Automotive Service Technology from Weber State University. Peter is also an 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. Find his page on Facebook at Certified Auto Consulting. Read more of Peter's stories at Toyota news coverage on Torque News. Search Toyota Prius Torque News for more in depth Prius coverage from our reporters.