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I am getting more and more excited about buying a new Prius (on the list here in SoCal). In preparing for my purchase I wanted to know what regular maintenance one can expect for the vehicle. I know that folks change oil at 3000-5000 miles (depending on anal retentiveness). But, are there other items? Things like spark plugs, fuel filters, etc. And what are their schedules?

Thanks,
Snowdall
 

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In preparing for my purchase I wanted to know what regular maintenance one can expect for the vehicle.
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There are no more (probably less) required maintenance items than other modern new cars. Toyota recommends oil/filter change every 5000 miles. The Electrical Systems require no maintenance.
 

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Untill 100K, all that you need is oil changes at 5K, and air filter (both) changes at 30K. May want to check the filters at 15K though, often they get real dirty by then.
 

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DanMan32 said:
Untill 100K, all that you need is oil changes at 5K, and air filter (both) changes at 30K. May want to check the filters at 15K though, often they get real dirty by then.

I think there is valve adjustment at 60,000 miles.
 

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maint

The valve clearances are to be checked each 60k miles, and adjusted only if out of spec. The adjustment is different than for many other vehicles. There are "caps" or "buckets" available in a range of thicknesses. To reset the clearance on a particular valve, swap in the cap that is thicker or thinner as needed, and then recheck clearance to make sure it is now within spec. AFAIK, no DIY-er yet has a box full of these different-thickness caps for the Prius.

DAS
 

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I want to avoid breaking any factory seals unless absolutely necessary. If the ICE is running fine and there's no excess valve clicking, I'd leave it alone.
 

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easy maintenance

I was worried that the Prius would be more expensive to keep up but I just had my 5000 done at the dealer (Toyota Carlsbad) and for what I was paying to have the oil changed on the Sport Trac (mid $40's) I got oil/lube, tire rotation and a car wash.
I can
t wait for them to come out with a Rav Hybrid!!
 

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I want to avoid breaking any factory seals unless absolutely necessary. If the ICE is running fine and there's no excess valve clicking, I'd leave it alone.
You've picked the reason for the valve adjustment done by any mechanic. On a standard pushrod engine the valve lash is taken care of by hydraulic lifters. On an overhead camshaft engine, the camshaft rides directly on the valve stems I believe.
 

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I've never had to worry about valves in all the cars I'v ever owned except my '72 corona, which had adjustment screws. Even for that, it was to keep the clicking down.

If valve 'adjustment' really was an issue, they would have kept the adjustment screws.

I had a mechanic change the timing belt on my '88 Accord. Valve cover leaked ever since.
If it aint broke, don't break seals to try and fix it.
 

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I don't know about the Prius engine in particular, but most OHC heads use shims to "adjust" the valves. It is not a maintenance item, and does not wear much. Only if you pull the heads should it be bothered with. With the late valve timing of the Prius motor, I expect it to be even LESS sensitive to valve lash than regular ICE motors.

My old VWs need valve adjustments every 3K miles... so many busted knuckles I can't count them!
 

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The shims and buckets are used in overhead cam engines as they are positive and keep the clearances probably 10 to 20 times longer than the old screw adjustment method which is cheap but not really satisfactory in a high revving engine. I know the Prius is supposedly not a high revving engine but it does have overhead camshafts and this has always been the method used. There of course are no adjustable pushrods in this engine that you can get to for adjustment. It's really quite a simple and positive method for any adjustment needed and after noting clearances the camshafts are just lifted and the required shim or bucket is replaced. 100% positive and except for wear (with good oil "O") no maintenance ever required. I had never heard of different sized buckets (only the shims under the buckets) but in the interest of lightness, even though a more expensive way of doing it, probably much more positive,
If a timing belt ever has to replaced because the car can not be correctly timed or the belt has slipped, make sure you have a good mechanic do the job and specify that he use the most expensie gasket available. They come in all ranges and the guy trying to do the cheapest job can certainly screw things up for down the road.
 

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let me see if I can post some bits out of the NHW11 engine manual. from the valvemech.pdf file in fact:

"3. Intake and Exhaust Valve and Valve Lifter

Valve lifters with shimless valve adjustment have been adopted for weight reduction.

The adjustment of the valve clearance is accomplished by selecting and replacing the appropriate valve lifters.

Narrower valve stems have been adopted to reduce the intake and exhaust resistance and for weight reduction."

and now an image, which will ideally highlight the cap/bucket

Sorry, no joy. It is a 17 kb jpg, and I don't know why I failed

DAS
 

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You know that and I know that (Your note of changing one and removing the gasket was on an 88 Accord and that was the car I was referring too) but I just got a note from Toyota advising me my Prius needed a ten thousand mile check and advised me that while it was in they would give me a complimentary printed out alignment check along with a 15% labor discount on changing my "timing belt". Do you think it would be wise of me to advise them I just got the factory notice to bring the car in for the two hour TSB. I'm not to sure I want them fooling with a perfectly running car.
 

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hyperion said:
You know that and I know that (Your note of changing one and removing the gasket was on an 88 Accord and that was the car I was referring too) but I just got a note from Toyota advising me my Prius needed a ten thousand mile check and advised me that while it was in they would give me a complimentary printed out alignment check along with a 15% labor discount on changing my "timing belt". Do you think it would be wise of me to advise them I just got the factory notice to bring the car in for the two hour TSB. I'm not to sure I want them fooling with a perfectly running car.
Flag on the field for ambiguous use of pronouns, both actual and implied.

Another flag on the field for inproper and ambiguous use of the proper noun Toyota. I assume you meant the dealer notice?
 
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