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How to Replace a Prius Actuator Assembly

The replacement cost of an actuator assembly can be pretty high. Luckily, you can save hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars by replacing it at home. This a project that is doable for someone with good mechanical knowledge. It is a lengthy job. Expect to spend 5 to 7 hours to complete it.

Preparation

Prius actuator

If you want this project to go smoothly, you need to prepare everything first. That involves gathering together all the necessary tools and materials, which are:

  • Toyota Techstream (a diagnostic tool) for bleeding the brakes
  • 14 mm socket to remove wipers
  • 12 mm socket (1/4 inch)
  • 10 mm socket (1/4 inch)
  • 6 inch ratchet extension (1/4 inch)
  • 1/4 inch ratchet
  • 10 mm box/open end wrench
  • 10 mm flare nut wrench (for hydraulic lines)
  • 8 mm box/open end wrench
  • torx T30 (for one bolt on the inverter cover)
  • needle nose pliers
  • offset long nose pliers
  • trim panel removal tool
  • multimeter
  • large container and 1/4 inch flexible line for brake bleeding
  • 1/4 inch flexible tubing to bleed the inverter loopd
  • 22 mm socket to remove inverter drain
  • at least 32 oz brake fluid
  • inverter coolant
  • a lot of shop towels
  • heavy duty PVC gloves (to protect you from electricity when removing the inverter, just in case.)

You’ll also need to get an OEM replacement actuator assembly. It’s pretty much the only thing you’ll have to pay for (if you have all of the tools and materials listed above, that is.) It’s important to get the right part number for your Prius. To do this, look up your Prius in our catalog of genuine OEM actuator assemblies for Prii. Here’s a couple of direct links to our best selling Prius actuator assemblies:

Steps to Take

Actuator

This is an overview of the process to replace your actuator. We recommend that you search YouTube and/or Toyota Prius forums for more comprehensive information. Here are the basic steps:

  1. Disconnect your starter battery and both Hybrid Safety Disconnect Rear batteries.
  2. Take the windshield wiper assembly and the cowling off. This will give you access to the ABS actuator assembly.
  3. Drain the inverter coolant, then remove the inverter. Use a voltmeter to be sure there is no voltage at the inverter connections.
  4. Remove the cabin heat auxiliary water pump from it's mount, but do not disconnect the hoses.
  5. Remove the actuator mounting bolts.
  6. Disconnect all the brake lines from the actuator assembly.
  7. Remove the actuator assembly.
  8. Install the new actuator assembly in the reverse order.
  9. Reinstall and bleed the inverter.
  10. Bleed your brakes with Techstream. (Make sure your battery is fully charged. This process will take about an hour.)

Got any questions about this replacement process? Contact us!

Written by Jason Lancaster