Geo Prizm Repair and Maintenance

A guide to problems, costs, maintenance and repair for your Geo Prizm

Geo Prizm Problems

Vehicle Won't Crank Due To Starter

If the engine will not crank over, the most common problem is the starter. These will tend to go out at about 100,00-125,000 miles. Sometimes it is only the starter solenoid, but often the complete starter (including solenoid) needs to be replaced.

Ignition Coil Inside Distributor May Fail

The ignition coil inside the distributor may fail. Our technicians tell us this may result in a hesitation on acceleration, especially when the vehicle is warming up on cold, rainy days. The pickup coils inside the distributor can also fail and cause a no-start condition. There have also been some failures of the radio noise suppressors inside the distributors, which can short out. Our technicians recommend replacing the whole distributor with a complete, genuine Toyota distributor if any of its components fail.

Rattling noise from timing belt tensioner at higher mileages
The timing belt tensioner may make a rattling noise at a higher mileages. This is due to the adjustment being at its limit. Our technicians tell us the range of the adjuster may be lengthened by elongating the slot where the spring attaches by 2-3 mm to remedy this problem.

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Geo Prizm Recalls

Recall 97V043002
IF THE AIR BAG COMPUTER IN A SUBJECT VEHICLE EXPERIENCES A MECHANICAL SHOCK (I.E., RAPIDLY MOVING THE FRONT SEAT BACK AGAINST THE STOPS OR A SUDDEN RELEASE OF THE PARKING BRAKE) WITHIN A VERY SHORT TIME AFTER THE ENGINE IS STARTED, THE AIR BAG CAN DEPLOY INADVERTENTLY.
Recall 96V107000
IF LIQUID IS SPILLED IN THE CONSOLE BOX AREA, THE AIR BAG WARNING LIGHT CAN ILLUMINATE AND STAY "ON" DURING NORMAL DRIVING CONDITIONS.
Recall 95V195002
THE BATTERY CAN HAVE A DEFECTIVE WELD INSIDE THE POSITIVE AND/OR NEGATIVE TERMINAL ALLOWING THE CONNECTION INSIDE OF THE TERMINAL TO SEPARATE.

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Geo Prizm Reviews

My baby just died.
300,520 miles Iand counting. I swear to you I have never changed anything on this vehicle. Ok maybe; the clutch, timing belt, radiator and put new seals on the front and rear main but other than that nothing.Oh wait oil lots of oil. I bought this car in Detroit in 1991,it has proven to me. that Toyota rocks.
I love my Prizm! Unfortunately, some Bozo hit me, and it has been declared a total loss, so it is going for scrap. So sad to see her go. She had over 230,000 miles on her and was in great shape. The exterior paint was just starting to fade in places. If you were to see it before the wreck, you'd think it was a new car. I babied it, and it deserved it. Also, I am a stickler for a good AC, and th...

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