Questions about general routine maintenance of a vehicle or engine.

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2
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3answers
535 views

Front End Alignments

I recently had my vehicle in for a front end alignment. They told me all of my shocks were bad, causing all of the problems, and that they would not be able to align the front end with those bad ...
1
vote
1answer
285 views

How to let off the carburetors of a 1993 Suzuki GSX-R 1100 for winter storage?

My '93 Gixxer is in the shed for winter. I had it fully tanked, the shed is (moderately) warm, and every couple of weeks I attach a trickle charger to its battery. However, I know that there is still ...
2
votes
1answer
365 views

Car decelerating quickly

I recently changed my brake pads and did wheel alignment at the official workshop of my car manufacturer. It was driving just fine but suddenly as I was driving it at one fine point the steering ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

How do I know if my air filter needs replacing?

They say when an air filter is dirty, you should replace it. However, I'm just not sure how "dirty" is dirty? Is there some sort of easy test to determine whether I need to replace it?
1
vote
1answer
788 views

Should I change automatic transmission fluid on an older vehicle?

I have a Pontiac Vibe 2004 with an automatic transmission. The mileage now is around 120k miles and I've never changed the transmission fluid. There are no mechanical problems with the vehicle at the ...
1
vote
1answer
91 views

What car wash tasks should be done after an automatic car wash?

I have access to free automatic car washes. It is a pretty basic and short cloth car wash and dry. What should I do in additional to the automatic car wash? I was thinking about drying off any spots ...
2
votes
0answers
68 views

Scooter Powerband Spiking

When I start accelerating, after around 3 seconds I get a spike in my engine rpm (at least it sounds like it). After another few seconds it calms back down and continues escelating as expected. I ...
5
votes
4answers
848 views

Are these repairs necessary, and can I do them myself?

I'm wondering if the maintenance my dealer recently suggested is necessary, and if so, if it's worth it for me (a person who has technical skill but is inexperienced with auto) to undertake on my own ...
2
votes
1answer
149 views

Removing Rust from 2010 Civic Doors

I have some scratches on my doors. After some reading, it seems like my best option is to paint over it, and optionally scour the rust. I don't have access to fancy tools, and I believe that ...
4
votes
2answers
190 views

How to remove dipstick tube from 2003 Acura TL?

In the course of changing the timing belt in my 2003 Acura TL, my Hayne's manual says to remove the dipstick tube. The manual says that this is accomplished by removing one bolt. I removed the bolt, ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

Remove stuck crankshaft bolt on 2003 Acura TL for timing belt change?

A friend is helping me change the timing belt on my 2003 Acura TL 3.2. Yes, I paid for the beer!!! We've successfully removed the upper timing belt covers, drive belt, and serpentine belt. We're ...
2
votes
2answers
609 views

What system should I inspect first for the following issues on a 2004 Chevy Aveo?

A 2004 Chevy aveo with around 78,000 miles has the following issues: The Daytime Running Light indicator (as well as the lights themselves) randomly turn on and off. This is a slow thing and has ...
2
votes
2answers
189 views

Car sitting for several months: what should I do to keep it running well?

I have a car that's been sitting for several months and I just got it working again. What should I do to ensure that it keeps running well?
8
votes
6answers
3k views

Is it okay to leave a car for 5 months without driving it?

I need to travel to the east coast and work from there for a duration of 5 months. I can leave my car in covered parking here and ask a friend to start the car for a few minutes every week. What ...
5
votes
3answers
139 views

I'm looking to buy a new car and I'm wondering what does more damage on a car: time or miles?

So the title is pretty self explanatory. I'm looking at getting a minivan, and there is a 2011 model with 50k miles, and a 2008 model with like 30k miles. What's better? Is it better to have ...
1
vote
1answer
610 views

Inside door latch not working - Toyotta Corolla 2002

I have an Toyotta Corolla 2002 and sometime ago is not anymore possible to open the passenger door by inside. Opening the passenger door using the exterior handle is working only the inside ...
0
votes
1answer
388 views

Factory Maintenance Schedule by Mileage or Years?

I have a 2001 Civic with 65K miles. I have not done the 60K service yet, but the maintenance schedule also says that is the 3 year maintenance. Is the age of the car as important as the mileage when ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Car overheating problem

I have a 2002 Ford Focus. Whenever the car is idling the heat gauge goes up at an alarming rate and goes the farthest into the red that it can if left alone. Now if I rev the engine a little the ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

2006 Chevy Cobalt front end (strut mount?) noise

I have a 2006 Chevy Cobalt and since I bought the thing, the front suspension makes this horrible clunking noise every time I go over a bump. I don't know how to describe the noise other than it only ...
8
votes
7answers
5k views

Most important preventive maintenance for high-mileage car?

My 2001 Chevrolet Prizm (a NUMMI) is about to hit 125,00 miles. I bought a little over 5 years ago, at which time it had ~79,000 miles on it. I bought it from a used car dealer that seemed to have ...
1
vote
2answers
317 views

Giving an old car a refresh

I have an old car (1990 Volvo 240) which I am rather attached it. Lately it seems like it has been creaking and groaning rather more than usual. Is there some sort of spring cleaning(except it's a 20 ...
6
votes
5answers
3k views

What is a good car to start with if I want to learn auto repair?

A couple of other "getting started" questions have been closed (as redundant with these questions), so I hope that my question is different and specific enough. I'm interested in learning to repair ...
5
votes
3answers
153 views

Where can I go to do basic work on my vehicle?

I live in the middle of a city. I have a tiny parking spot in an underground parking garage (have to fold the mirrors in just to get in!). Doing any maintenance is officially verboten, and it ...
6
votes
3answers
409 views

Car enthusiast beginner kit

What is a good place to begin building a kit/set up for performing your own service? For ex: oil changes waxing detailing What is the best starting equipment one can start on?
3
votes
2answers
5k views

Which provides better engine flushing, traditional flushing oil or adding a flush additive to old oil?

Background I think that my vehicle would probably benefit from having it's lubrication system being flushed out at it's next oil change. Checking prices of flushing oil at local suppliers I noticed ...
34
votes
7answers
3k views

What to check when buying a used car?

I'm looking to buy a used car. What do you think I should check (mechanically) before buying it (especially if it's diesel)?
-2
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1answer
227 views

Diesel engines maintenance [closed]

Diesel engines are more complex than their petrol counterparts. What are the basic diesel engines maintenance must-dos?
6
votes
3answers
3k views

How to begin learning engine tuning?

Quite simply, I want to begin tuning and modifying automotive engines for hobby. I have always been fascinated with cars, and I want to become knowledgeable in as many aspects of car tuning as ...
3
votes
2answers
163 views

How can I add tension to a motorcycle chain?

I have 2008 Yamaha Scorpio 225, and the chain is looking a bit loose. I've had a good look around, and I really can't find a way to tighten it. Does anyone have any idea where to look? Is there a ...
10
votes
2answers
322 views

Any recommendations on vehicle maintenance software for the DIYer?

I currently use a combination of Car Minder for the iPhone - it's only $2.99 but limited functionality - and Excel spreadsheets. Ideally I'm looking for something that will track all service for up ...
8
votes
7answers
29k views

Is Prestone “All Makes/All Models” coolant *really* compatible with all models?

My car's manual says to use the blue Honda coolant: Always use Honda All Season Antifreeze/Coolant Type 2 [MSDS]. This coolant is pre-mixed with 50 percent antifreeze and 50 percent water. ...
1
vote
1answer
426 views

Aftermarket Glass Run Rubber (for '94 Nissan D21 Truck)

I am searching for the Glass Run Rubber for a 1994 D21 Nissan Truck (what the window rolls up into on the outside of the vehicle door). My local dealership said the factory part numbers are 80335N ...
3
votes
2answers
430 views

97 GMC k1500 missing badly. Ignition system problems?

I have a 97 GMC Sierra k1500 with a 305 (5.0L) engine. It seems like every year for a few years now it will suddenly start missing very badly. There will be random misfires on all cylinders almost ...
8
votes
4answers
3k views

How do I select the right oil for my car?

I can give you my cars make and model and the conditions that I drive in, but I'm looking for a general guide to selecting the right oil for a car. I'm not really knowledgable when it comes to cars so ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Good template for keeping maintenance records?

I'm looking for ideas on templates to use to record service for multiple vehicles. Excel is preferred format, but open to all in interest of gathering ideas. Anyone have any templates?
2
votes
1answer
133 views

Tips for finding a good mechanic

As a programmer, if I had a non-programmer friend who was looking for a programmer, I could think of a few tips to help him sort out the sheep from the goats and avoid some common traps. Do you have ...
2
votes
3answers
116 views

What is this tank for ?

I just bough an old (1980s) Nissan Pathfinder. In the engine I have managed to identify the engine-oil hole, the radiator-water hole and the windshield-washer hole (you can tell I'm a car expert!) ...
5
votes
3answers
213 views

What is the best practice to maintain a bike?

I have an Avenger 180cc bike, I want to maintain the bike without much help from the service center, external help etc. What would be the best practice methods?
3
votes
1answer
503 views

What should I look for in a basic motorcycle maintenance toolkit?

I'm looking to do more of my motorcycle maintenance myself, and am wondering what I should be investing in, when it comes to tools/devices. What are the basic tools that I'd need when starting to do ...
5
votes
2answers
589 views

Ford Probe '94 heater problem

My Probe's heater has stopped working and only ever blows cold air. In addition to this, I notice the temperature gauge on the dash display is creeping very high. What part (or parts) is likely to be ...
5
votes
2answers
6k views

What are the audible symptoms of a failing starter motor?

My 2004 Subaru WRX has 110000 miles on the odometer and I'm worried about the original equipment starter motor. Here are the audible symptoms that have me concerned: During the winter, I noticed ...
3
votes
3answers
97 views

What concerns should I have for having a car in a hot, dry climate?

I live in a hot, dry climate (Arizona, if anyone cares). It is very common in the summer for it to get over 110 F (That's 43 C for those of you metric buffs), usually having tens of days a year over ...
2
votes
1answer
893 views

Burned regulator/rectifier

I have managed to completely fry regulator/rectifier on my Suzuki GSR600 (K7). I suspect that it happened when I blindly splashed into a big water pond, so some water probably got on connector. Thing ...