5
votes
1answer
161 views

The tray under my gas tank is dented. What should I be aware of before draining and removing my gas tank?

I dented the tray under my gas tank, reducing my capacity by about a gallon. It's a wide dent; there's no damage to the plastic. I'd like to drop the tank and pound out the dent in the aluminum tray. ...
8
votes
1answer
161 views

How to fix freezing locks

Does anyone know how to prevent locks on car doors from freezing, this is usually only a problem in older cars. I'm not thinking of solutions like WD-40 that really only work for a few days and then ...
11
votes
6answers
11k views

How far can you drive with an empty radiator?

The radiator on my Peugeot 106 has started leaking very badly and need replacing. I don't have time to fix it at the moment, so I'm taking it to a garage. How far can I drive it without damaging the ...
2
votes
2answers
265 views

Steering wheel gives a “cluck” sound

I have a Honda Civic VTI, 1997 model, automatic transmission. When I turn the steering wheel all the way to the left or right, it gives me a loud "cluck" sound. What is it?
5
votes
3answers
4k views

My car wobbles while driving

I have a Honda Civic VTI, 1997 model, automatic transmission. When I start driving my car gives a feeling that one of the front wheel is wobbling and the steering wheel receives continuous jerks. This ...
24
votes
3answers
7k views

Reviving a vehicle that has been idle for a long time.

Some related topics: How to maintain a sometimes-used vehicle? How long does it take for gas to go bad? The first related topic addresses preparing a vehicle for long-term disuse, and maintaining ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Teflon Coating your new car

While buying a new car the dealer suggests Teflon coating your car so that the paint shine lasts longer. I know that Teflon is a substance which does not easily attach to any other substance. So is ...
30
votes
5answers
27k views

How long does it take for gas to go bad?

Approximately how long does it take for unleaded gasoline in the tank and fuel lines to become unusable in a car that is not being used? What causes this, and what can be done to prevent or remedy ...
7
votes
2answers
636 views

Do I Need to Compress the Springs to Install Strut Tower Braces?

I have a '99 Maxima. I am considering installing strut tower braces. In order to do so, would I need to get spring compression tools to hold the springs on the struts, or will the weight of the car ...
28
votes
4answers
51k views

Why does my A/C blow foul smelling air when it first turns on?

Most of the time when I first turn on the A/C in our 2008 Toyota Sienna, the air that blows out has a very distinct chemical - nasty smell. After a while it seems to go away. I'm not sure if I just ...
6
votes
3answers
4k views

How do I apply dielectric grease to my battery?

I recently had a new battery installed in my 2006 Subaru Forester. The shop did not use any dielectric grease, just connected the leads to the terminal and that's it. What is the preferred method of ...
6
votes
4answers
8k views

Does a strut tower bar have any useful effect on chassis stiffness for a car with 100K miles?

Aftermarket strut tower bars are generally considered to be decorative on many brand new cars. However, it seems to be a bit more logical that a chassis with 100K miles would have developed some flex ...
2
votes
2answers
412 views

What things should I look for when inspecting a used vehicle? [closed]

I recently bought a new (to me) car. The biggest difficulty I have is trying to determine what if any major mechanical problems there might be, and what to look for when inspecting the vehicle and ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

Finding a possible vacuum leak

One of our cars has a bit of a rough idle which disappears at about 1,000 RPM. After eliminating everything else I concluded that this is due to a minor vacuum leak. This was confirmed by the use of a ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

2005 Ford Taurus - Is it really harmful to use standard antifreeze?

My wife was speaking with a mechanic when she took the car in for a safety and emissions inspection this past week and the mechanic told her that we HAD to take our Ford Taurus to a Ford dealership or ...
18
votes
2answers
1k views

How to deal with rust

I accidentally drove my car over a curb a while back. As you probably already know, the car suffered from minor scratches and dents on the bottom side, near the rear tyre. Now, I've noticed that it's ...
11
votes
4answers
39k views

What's the point of the D3 gear in an automatic transmission?

My Honda Civic has a D gear and a D3, which apparently prevents it from going into 4th. Why would I want to do this? What is it good for? Does it make my fuel efficiency better or worse? Does it ...
9
votes
3answers
13k views

Battery drains by itself when vehicle is parked (parasitic draw)

A 1998 Jeep Grand Cherokee has gone through 3 batteries in the last 3 months. While they have all been replaced by warranties, it'd be nice to get the problem solved permanently. I've tested the ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the tell tale signs of a catalytic converter that might be going bad?

I've owned two vehicles whose catalytic converters were recalled due two a couple of reasons: one being the quality of the CC and the other being a reduction in power due to a material building up and ...
23
votes
3answers
4k views

Difference between FWD/RWD/4WD/Part-Time 4WD/AWD?

I'm curious as to what are the particular difference between the various drive systems available in modern vehicles. FWD and RWD are pretty straightforward - Front Wheel Drive cars put the power to ...
10
votes
3answers
3k views

Is it worth switching to full synthetic or blend oil in my older car/truck?

I have a older (enter vehicle here) that has 100k miles on it. Would I see any benefit switching to full synthetic or synthentic blend oil? Is it worth the extra cost in an older vehicle? For ...
2
votes
1answer
407 views

Hood on Jeep Grande Cherokee 1998 doesn't close easily

This vehicle recently had its radiator changed, and ever since, the hood won't close. I've found that if I shift the level manually, it will close, but otherwise it won't. The spring appears to be ...
3
votes
1answer
450 views

Should oil be changed every 3000, or 5000 miles? [closed]

I've always heard that the oil in a car should be changed every 3000 miles, but I read the manufacturer's suggested maintenance guide, and it says to change it every 5000 miles. Which is correct, or ...
36
votes
15answers
112k views

Should I resurface or replace my rotors everytime I replace brake pads?

I have heard it is proper practice to replace or resurface your brake rotors every time your do a brake pad replacement. Does this need to be done every single time or is it overkill? Maybe it is ...
3
votes
5answers
17k views

Is there a general fix or product I can buy to silence a squeaky belt?

I have a squeaky belt in my car that is driving me crazy! Is there a general fix or belt treatment product I can buy to silence a squeaky belt? If belts are squeaky, does that mean time for ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

What could cause an engine to make a chirping sound when it's first started up?

I've owned a Diesel Peugeot 307 for a year now but during the recent winter months I have noticed a strange sound in the engine when I started it up. As sounds aren't well described with words, I have ...
5
votes
3answers
541 views

How to do minor repairs to a radiator?

I have a radiator in my truck that has a slow leak which looks like it is oozing a little bit in between some of the fins. What are some of the ways to repair a radiator without replacing it? At ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Reverse difficult to engage with manual transmission

I have a 2000 VW Jetta TDI with a manual transmission. In the past few days, I have not been able to push the gear shifter into reverse without letting up on the clutch. I get about halfway from ...
12
votes
3answers
753 views

What is the proper way to bleed brakes and replace the fluid?

What is the proper way to replace the brake fluid in a car? What tools are required? I want to make sure I do not get any air or bubbles in the system as this is something that needs to be done right ...
4
votes
2answers
493 views

Upgrade to HID lights in a Jeep Wrangler

I would like to upgrade to HID lights in my 2008 Jeep Wrangler. The stock lights aren't bright at all. My question is, since this would be an aftermarket upgrade, what am I looking at here? Is it ...
2
votes
1answer
477 views

Suspension squeaks

The suspension on my 2008 Jeep Wrangler squeaks when I hit a low spot (maybe 4-6" from the grade), even at slow (<10 mph) speeds. Where can I lubricate or what should i check to eliminate this ...
2
votes
1answer
793 views

Cause of P0440 on 1999 Subaru Legacy Outback

I get a P0440 code on my Outback on almost every highway trip over 5 miles. Is this caused by the leak in the gas tank or could it be something else?
1
vote
1answer
332 views

Toyata Avalon non-VVT-i / VVt-i swap

I have a Toyota Avalon (2002 Australian build) with a non-VVt-i 1MZ-FE engine (same as used globally). If an engine swap becomes necessary would it be feasible to install a VVT-i version of the same ...
3
votes
1answer
354 views

What tools should every home mechanic have? [closed]

What tools should every home mechanic have in their toolbox? One item per answer please, upvote the best ones. This is intended to be a wiki-style question.
4
votes
3answers
931 views

Is Redline Lightweight Shockproof appropriate for an aging 2004 Subaru Impreza manual gearbox?

I have an aging (but wonderful) 2004 Subaru Impreza WRX with a manual gearbox. For some time, I have noticed that the synchros have begun to feel worn with the stock dealer-issue oil. Shifts are ...
8
votes
2answers
14k views

How to test for defective glow plugs?

On a diesel engine, how can I know which glow plugs are defective, and can I change these only?
2
votes
3answers
2k views

How do I silence squeaky springs on a 2006 VW Golf?

I have a 2006 VW Golf and my front two springs are squeaky like bedsprings. I have tried spraying them down with WD40 but it doesn't help. Some seasons they are quiet other times (I believe more in ...
44
votes
8answers
9k views

What are the benefits of premium (high octane) petrol?

Here in the UK it's common for petrol (gas) stations to offer both regular and "premium" unleaded petrol. The premium stuff is (naturally) more expensive, and I've often wondered what the actual ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

How do you change the headlights of a 2001 VW Passat?

After popping the hood, it is not immediately obvious how/where the headlights are. How do you get access to them?
7
votes
5answers
206 views

How can I know if the right oil has been added to the vehicle?

Considering that the car recommend Mobil 1 Synthetic oil as per the logo on the oil cap, how can I be sure that the garage that did the oil change poured the recommended oil and not another low cost ...
4
votes
2answers
124 views

Shocks and dampers - what can I do to prolong their life through home maintenance?

My car has factory fitted uprated shocks, lower and stiffer than the usual ones, and I find that despite not abusing them I go through the back set every 30-35,000 miles. As new ones are quite ...
5
votes
4answers
712 views

Preventing visor from fogging

How do you prevent your visor from fogging? I ordered a pinlock today for my HJC helmet, but had read some good things about NEC pinkstick (some kind of wax for visor). Usually I just keep the visor ...
5
votes
1answer
226 views

Scratches - both light and deep

How on earth do I remove unsightly scratches from my paint work? There are plenty are are down to the white undercoat, how do I remedy them?
31
votes
5answers
952 views

How to maintain a sometimes-used vehicle?

My daily commute changed from 9 miles to 9 feet when I started working remotely. That means I very rarely drive my car much. After a particularly hectic month, I didn't drive for about 4 weeks and ...
10
votes
2answers
3k views

2005 Dodge Ram: easy way to diagnose code P0420?

My truck is reporting a code P0420, which apparently is "Catalyst System Efficiency Below Threshold (Bank 1)" which can either be the catalytic converter or the rear O2 sensor. The code came on at ...
2
votes
1answer
767 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 ...
10
votes
5answers
11k views

Does a timing chain need maintenance?

Does a timing chain (as opposed to timing belt) need any specific maintenance? In particular I'm talking about a BMW Z4
8
votes
1answer
506 views

How do I drain the brake fluid for a 1999 BMW K1200RS?

I need to drain the brake fluid for my 1999 BMW K1200RS with ABS in order to do some minor service on the Master Cylinder, but I don't have a service manual for the bike. How should I go about doing ...
6
votes
2answers
446 views

how can I quiet a 'chirping' ventilation fan motor blade?

I have a 2006 VW Golf and the internal fan motor that blows the a/c & heat will start to 'chirp' (sound something like a bird singing) randomly. I believe the fan blade needs to be lubricated, ...
8
votes
6answers
5k views

How can I remove a seized brake disc?

I'm changing the rear brake discs and pads on my Ford Focus C-MAX. I've done one side which was fairly easy, but on the other side I can't get the disc off. There is nothing holding it on as far as I ...

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