Hot answers tagged

47

I wouldn't touch the odometer. The rule I always subscribe to is that the odometer measures how far the chassis has rolled. Otherwise a person could go mad trying to figure out which repairs/replacements should reset the clock. (Obviously not tires or wheels, but wheel bearings? Axles/driveshaft? Transmission/differential? etc...) It also makes sense when ...


35

Car batteries are not only rechargeable but are constantly being recharged by the alternator. Simply starting the car takes a lot of power reserves from the battery, then electrical systems such as the headlights, screen heaters, ignition and injection systems all draw on the battery. When the engine is running, the alternator is near constantly providing ...


25

I've never replaced an odometer when replacing an engine. What I will do, however, is make a note in the cars documentation that the engine was replaced at xxx,000 miles with a new/refurbished engine with xx,000 miles. I also keep all the receipts of any ancillary parts replaced at the same time (tensioners, water pumps, etc), so that a new buyer can see ...


15

If it runs out of fluid it will need to be replaced, because it will destroy itself rapidly (probably preceded by a loud grinding noise). In the meantime, as long as there is sufficient gear oil to wet the gears it will be fine. As for severity, it is common for differentials to develop a "seep" around the front seal where the drive-shaft connects, or the ...


14

You're probably better off not replacing the odometer. You will need to keep accurate track of how far the car has been driven in total, so if you were to later sell your car without disclosing that the actual mileage is the new odometer reading + 220k miles, you could be found guilty of fraud. You certainly don't have to replace the odometer, and it will ...


12

Wow, I'm in the minority here. It is my firm belief that you should have your rotors turned with every brake pad/shoe replacement! If you do not do this everything will work perfectly fine, until you apply the brakes then if your brake rotors/drums were glazed, heavily scored or worn out of parallel to the new brake pad your will stopping distance WILL be ...


12

As Steve has explained, the battery is rechargable and is constantly charged and discharged when it's in use. This process of charging and discharging is not perfect. Over time, the components in the battery that hold the charge (the plates and the electrolyte) degrade, reducing the battery's capacity (amount of charge it can hold) and its maximum current....


11

Does anyone have a definitive answer as to which option I should choose? I do: you need matching tires. That said, it's your car and you have to make the decision. I'd tend to replace all four. @Paulster2 also makes a good point that you could shave down a new one to match. Let's start by looking at one of the most useful paragraphs from the Tire ...


11

In general airbags don't have an expiration date. The airbags in a modern vehicle are designed to last for life. Some manufacturers have service intervals for the airbags, but it's normally a visual check and making sure the SRS (airbag) diagnostic systems is functioning correctly. Mercedes put expiration date stickers on the door sill with an expiration ...


10

A simple test that you can perform in your own driveway is: For each corner of the car, push down hard several times (the car should be bouncing visibly up and down) When pushed down, release and watch The car should bounce upwards (above the normal resting point) and then immediately settle at the resting point. Additional bouncing indicates worn or faulty ...


9

At least in the United States you are not required to use the dealer for service,parts or repairs to maintain your warranty. You will be required to have the warranty work done at the dealer except in extenuating circumstances,(like the nearest dealer is 150 miles away) but you must still contact them first. If they deny a warranty claim on the basis of non ...


9

As Bob says, formal servicing should always follow the manufacturer's schedule - Make sure to take into account any variations suggested for your location/climate/usage pattern. This should include routine things like oil and filter changes, as well as more major, but less frequent things such as timing belts. In terms of more general checks and inspections,...


9

After cleaning the terminals with a small amount of baking soda (approx a tbsp and enough water to make a paste ) and a old toothbrush. I recommend wearing gloves to protect your hands from the acid salt and lead from the terminal. The acid deposits are normal. Assuming negative ground: When installing the battery connect the positive first. The car ...


8

Agree with @resident_heretic about the order of removing/installing the posts. Remove the negative first and reconnect last when changing out the battery. This prevents shorting the positive battery terminal to ground while swinging a wrench to tighten things. Something which has not been talked about, in a more generic sense (so this is for any vehicle), ...


8

I generally replace mine as soon as they show signs of fatigue, or when I think "ooh, I've not done those in a while" - usually after about 2 years. Don't wait until they perish completely and scratch the windscreen! Check them regularly (especially at the onset of autumn or when a lot of bad weather is expected)


8

Really depends on several factors. First is weather extremes. Blades exposed to bright hot sun (tropical latitudes) or freezing conditions will deteriorate quicker. Blades exposed to heavy dust or other contaminants will also experience shorter life. Do you clean the blades? Wiping the blade edge with alcohol periodically will prevent build up on the ...


7

Does it make the most sense to replace an old car's entire exhaust system all at once? Considering your car is almost 10 years old, having to replace all of the parts in the exhaust system does not sound unreasonable, especially if your locality uses any type of road solvent during the winter months (they didn't in Montana where I'm from originally, but ...


7

EDIT: I have heard that you do not need to remove the entire wing panelling. I certainly didn't on my 2003 Opel Agila. Just remove the screws from the front of the wing on the bottom of the car. Makes life easier. YOUR MILAGE MAY VARY ON THE CORSA! This is what Vauxhall has to say about the front fog lights. Firstly, we need to remove the inner paneling (...


7

Overheated rotors can show some tell-tale signs. Once the metal has been overheated, it can weaken or warp which are both bad things. Some signs: Bluing Cracks These "spider cracks", "heat cracks", or "heat checks" are only on the surface of the rotor, but are still bad.


7

I've always replaced mine as soon as they don't clean the window. Sometimes the problem is streaking, other times its chattering because the wipers don't want to flex right on the back stroke. Another important thing to remember is that over time, your wiper arms can get bent (if they are not cast, or formed in some way to be rigid). It doesn't make a ...


7

Lead-acid batteries are rechargeable. Have you tried recharging it? That often will do. Lead-acid batteries fail after 4-7 years The simplest reason is there's acid in them. But some other battery types don't do any better, look at any cell phone battery. Lead-acid batteries hate deep cycling If you draw out most of the power of a battery, and then ...


6

You can by an engine from the dealer. Call around the price can very dramatically from dealer to dealer. Some of the high volume (parts sales) dealers will sell over the counter for less than a normal dealer would pay for the engine from GM. One of the dealers in my area sells hundreds if not thousands of engines a year. It was cheaper for my dealer to buy ...


6

The Mercedes M103 engine in your 300CE is a proven design, old enough to demonstrate its longevity—lots of them are running around still with 300,000+ miles on them. The head gaskets are pretty much the only serious weak point. If the engine was not burning excessive oil (more than a quart every 5,000 miles) or showing other signs of extreme wear before ...


6

The salvage yard will use an interchange manual. At one time it was a large series of books but is now a computer program. Each major and some not so major component of a vehicle was given a number. The number is then cataloged and all vehicles that use the same part are listed. When I have doubts I'll check several on line sources of parts. If one source ...


6

Let's see if I understand your situation correctly: All of your tires have well over 40000 miles on them. I've never sold a car with brand new tires on it so I'd suspect that those tires are quite old indeed. One of your tires is a Douglas Xtra Trac. It's telling that tire-rack.com doesn't even list this brand for me to refer to its rated mileage. So, ...


6

As Nick stated, try and get one of the same value. If one of the same value is not available, you can always go up in CCA/ah, but never go down. Vehicles are spec'ed with a certain battery because that is what it needs to operate the starter to get the engine going. With a lower CCA/ah, you run the risk of dragging the starter, which can cause it damage. The ...


6

Radiators are pretty simple to replace. If you've never done it before, look at some youtube videos, and set aside about 4 hours for it (90 minutes, if you're handy with a spanner). Repairs on radiators are rarely successful - it's often a plastic sidewall that goes on Subarus. Sticking various concoctions in the radiator (or a raw egg) just causes extra - ...


6

You should check to see if your car is under the current Takata Air Bag recall Does an Airbag Expire? While some automakers have set time limits on when to replace an airbag, the actual components are extremely durable. The key difference is the type of seal used to house the airbag igniter, also known as the squib. "Almost all squibs since Day One ...


5

The short answer is that you should always be guided by the maintenance schedule by the calendar set forth in your owner's manual. It will have a detailed calendar based on your usage profile and setting forth major items based on miles or dates, depending on what's most appropriate. Using my car as an example, there's a moderately major service required ...


5

Assuming you're buying the OEM filter from a Subaru dealer, they should be giving you a new washer with each one. It's an aluminum washer that's sort of folded over on itself so that it crushes. I just did an oil change, so here's a picture of the washers (used on the left, new on the right): Notice that the left one is appreciably flattened. My ...


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