engine oil frozen inside intake


Asked by Feb 19, 2017 at 09:59 PM about the 2013 Toyota Prius Base

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

after engine oil change by a dealer, my 2013 prius won't start next moning
with "check hybrid system...." message and all lights on. Towed it to the
dealer and I was told that oil is frozen inside intake, and cleaned with almost
$500 fee. The next  it happened again, and towed again to the dealer, they
said the same problem, and PCV may need to be replaced, and I told them it
has nothing to do with frozen oil, and it happened after engine oil change. so
they changed oil again. After that   everything is normal..., I suspect it may be
caused by engine oil quality. any advise will be appeciated...

10 Answers


I have literally driven inside the arctic circle without oil freezing. Are you at the North Pole? I think your dealer is completely making up silly things, just so they can charge you huge amounts of money. That's seriously the dumbest thing I've heard.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I've never heard that one before! Motor oil does not freeze! It becomes very thick in the cold weather but won't freeze. Now what can happen, with a faulty PCV (Positive Crankcase Ventilation) system is condensation can build up inside the crankcase. Maybe that's what they were seeing. But even then, there'd have to be a lot of condensation in there! Personally I think it's bunk! HTH. - Jim


I have been driving cars in a winter-peg over twenty-years, and it's my first time to have such case, They have shown me the frozen oil inside intake ... definitely sth wrong with oil change or washing my car, My prius has no any issue before and after, if I ask the dealer refund my money back, do you guys think I am unreasonable?

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

What a scam. Maybe there was oil residue from blow by but "frozen"? I would take that one to your states consumer protection department.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I would also report this dealer to Toyota directly and be sure and keep your paperwork.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

thx alot. I talked to toyota, They told me talk to the dealer first, and I am going to tomorrow. I will keep it posted...

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Make sure you keep the paperwork and don't let the dealer bamboozle you again.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Unfortunately I was so disappointed by the manager there (Crown Toyota dealership in Winnipeg), They insists it is caused by the existing PCV problem, and that moisture may be built up inside engine when the car was moved from the shop (warmer) to the outside (colder) when I asked that why engine oil frozen only after 1st oil change and the car didn’t have any single issue before and after 2nd oil change. Who can trust them again ...

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Called Toyota Canada, they stand behind the dealership ...

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

It sounds like they may have seriously over filled your oil! It's a more likely explanation than the story they're giving you. I was reminded how bad service dealer service departments can be when I was blessed or cursed with a couple years free maintenance at a dealership after buying our 2012 Prius. Twice they overfilled the oil, but not that severely. Twice the overtorqued the lug nuts, to well over twice the recommended spec. Worse, neither, the service advisor, technician, or service manager knew what the specified torque was without spending a couple minutes looking it up! When I asked if they could use a torque wrench, they had to unwrap it first! We're both better off than my friend. His engine seized after another Toyota dealer changed the oil and failed to properly reinstall the drain plug! there was no oil in the engine. At least Toyota provided him with a new engine. Unfortunately the same dealership installed it. I'm most impressed the Toyota vehicles when I think about how only they last when many are being serviced by fools and crooks at dealerships. Find a good trusted independent mechanic and only go the the dealership for warranty work. Checkbook.org, BBB, and many other rating agencies show that some of the worst mechanics are at dealerships.

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