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Discussion Starter #1
So today I was pulling into the store and brakes started acting up. The best way I can describe is like when the power steering goes out...the brakes did still work, but I had to press the pedal all the way in and it took a lot longer to completely stop. The instrument panel had the emergency brake light, the ABS light, and a generic brake system warning light all come on. I checked the brake fluid level and it was under the minimum, so I added some more and the system sucked it in. So I added more until it was halfway between min and max and stayed there. I turned the car on and let it sit for a few minutes. The lights stayed on and after 2-3 minutes, the car started having a loud high pitched tone sound. It was louder and higher pitched than the reverse warning sound. I turned the car off and now am here.

I did have the rear brakes done about a month ago and was told the front brakes were almost brand new and had about 90% of the pad left. I also had one of the plastic guards from underneath come off a couple weeks ago and it's been rainy last few days. Help!?
 

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00 4Runner 4x4, 06 Prius
4Runner & Prius
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As I'm sure you know, braking in the Prius is in part regenerative braking from the MGs and mechanicial braking with the conventional brakes.. The controller system that makes the decision about how to operate these two modes of braking is complex and one thing that will cause problems is if air gets into the braking actuator system, either due to low fluid which you mentioned or as a result of brake repairs..


Per your note, it sounds like either you have a fluid leak in your system or, whoever did the brake work did not properly bleed the system and reset the DTCs (diagnostic error codes) in the braking controller, which can get set when bleeding. (DTCs are in the braking controller itself which is different form OBDII diagnostic codes.)

In any event unless you have the factory service manuals, specifically Volume III Section BC and can do this type of work, you need to return the vehicle to whoever did the brake work and has either the Toyota intelligent tester to check the braking system and if all is well, reset the DTCs or use the manual method in Section BC pages BC-38 - BC40 to reset the DTCs assuming all else is well with the system.



Regarding the loud tone were there error lights lit up on the instrumental panel when this occured?


Obviously your car is telling you there is a significant braking system issue. Call the dealer or mechanic who is competent on the Prius braking system, first is it even safe to drive to the service location? or does it need to be picked up by a roll back vehicle hauler and taken in for repairs. .
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Initially, the instrument panel had the parking brake, ABS, and general brake system warning lights come on. After filling up the brake fluid reservoir, the tone started. Here is a link to the video I made of what is happening on the instrument panel:

 
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