Toyota Prius Owners Manual

Do−it−yourself service precautions
DO−IT−YOURSELF MAINTENANCE / Introduction / Do−it−yourself service precautions

If you perform maintenance by yourself,be sure to follow the correct proceduregiven in this Section.

You should be aware that improper or incompleteservicing may result in operatingproblems.

Performing do−it−yourself maintenanceduring the warranty period may affect yourwarranty coverage. Read the separateToyota Warranty statement for details andsuggestions.

This Section gives instructions only forthose items that are relatively easy for anowner to perform. As explained in Section7, there are still a number of items thatmust be done by a qualified technicianwith special tools.

For information on tools and parts for do−it−yourself maintenance, see “Parts andtools” on page 401.

Utmost care should be taken when workingon your vehicle to prevent accidentalinjury. Here are a few precautions thatyou should be especially careful to observe:


  • When the hybrid system is on, keephands, clothing, and tools awayfrom the moving fan and enginedrive belts. (Removing rings,watches, and ties is advisable.)
  • Right after driving, the enginecompartment—the engine, radiator,exhaust manifold and spark plugboots, etc.—will be hot. So be carefulnot to touch them. Oil, fluidsand spark plugs may also be hot.
  • If the hybrid system is hot, do notremove the radiator cap or loosenthe drain plugs to prevent burningyourself.
  • Do not leave anything that mayburn easily, such as paper or rags,in the engine compartment.
  • Do not smoke, cause sparks or allowopen flames around fuel or thebatteries. Their fumes are flammable.
  • When the hybrid system is operatingwith the “READY” light on, theengine is automatically started insome case. When you inspect theengine compartment, be sure topress the “POWER” switch to the“OFF” mode.
  • Do not get under your vehicle withjust the body jack supporting it. Alwaysuse automotive jack stands orother solid supports.
  • Be sure that the hybrid system isin the “OFF” mode if you work nearthe electric cooling fans or radiatorgrille. With the ignition on, theelectric cooling fans will automaticallystart to run if the engine coolanttemperature is high and/or theair conditioning is on.
  • Use eye protection whenever youwork on or under your vehiclewhere you may be exposed to flyingor falling material, fluid spray,etc.
  • Be extremely cautious when workingon the batteries. It contains poisonousand corrosive sulfuric acidor strong alkali.
  • Used engine oil contains potentiallyharmful contaminants which maycause skin disorders such as inflammationor skin cancer, so careshould be taken to avoid prolongedand repeated contact with it. To removeused engine oil from yourskin, wash thoroughly with soapand water.
  • Do not leave used oil within thereach of children.
  • Dispose of used oil and filter onlyin a safe and acceptable manner.Do not dispose of used oil and filterin household trash, in sewers oronto the ground. Call your dealerfor information concerning recyclingor disposal.
  • Take care when filling the brakefluid reservoir because brake fluidcan harm your eyes and damagepainted surfaces. If fluid gets inyour eyes, flush your eyes withclean water immediately. If you stillfeel uncomfortable with your eyes,go to the doctor.
  • When servicing the vehicle with thesmart entry and start system, besure to keep the smart key awayfrom the vehicle. If the key is leftin the vehicle, the hybrid systemmay start by pressing the “POWER”switch with the brake pedal depressed.


  • Remember that batteries and ignitioncable carry high currents orvoltages. Be careful of accidentallycausing a short circuit.
  • Add only “Toyota Super Long LifeCoolant” or similar high quality ethyleneglycol based non−silicate,non−amine, non−nitrite, and non−boratecoolant with long−life hybridorganic acid technology to fill theradiator. “Toyota Super Long LifeCoolant” is a mixture of 50% coolantand 50% deionized water (forthe U.S.A.) or 55% coolant and 45%deionized water (for Canada).
  • If you spill some of the coolant, besure to wash it off with water toprevent it from damaging the partsor paint.
  • Do not allow dirt or anything elseto fall through the spark plug holes.
  • Do not pry the outer electrode ofspark plug against the center electrode.
  • Use only spark plugs of the specifiedtype. Using other types willcause engine damage, loss of performanceor radio noise.
  • If the brake fluid is spilled on thevehicle, be sure to wash it off withwater to prevent it damage to partsor paint.
  • Do not drive with the air cleanerfilter removed, or excessive enginewear could result. Also backfiringcould cause a fire in the enginecompartment.
  • Be careful not to scratch the glasssurface with the wiper frame.When closing the hood, check tosee that you have not forgotten anytools, rags, etc.

© 2024 All Rights Reserved.