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24 votes
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Are trims (Hubcaps) on a car tires necessary?

No, hubcaps are purely cosmetic and do not need to be fitted. Some designs improve fuel economy and reduce wind noise by having a fairly flat surface but a car with one or more missing hubcaps is ...
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6 votes
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In a clip, what does the "Stem Length" mean?

Yes, 9 is the stem length in the graphic you have pictured.
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4 votes
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Door handle starting to come out

Behind the handle are two studs with nuts that hold the handle in place. You will need to take the interior door panel off and reach into the door to tighten these nuts.
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4 votes
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Special considerations for drilling into trim plastic?

Most internal plastic in motor vehicles is ABS, which is relatively "soft" when it comes to drilling. A conventionally ground bit can and will grab during the drilling, but it's unlikely to ...
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  • 3,572
3 votes

Ford F150 quirk

TL DR: This isn't how it's supposed to be. They should be the same from side to side ... however ... However, stuff happens. As Solar Mike aluded to, things happen on the assembly line which can give ...
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3 votes
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Honda Accord Purpose of 3 Slots in Interior Piece

I did a whole lot of work on automotive interior design including Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) as well as microphone location testing for Cell phone integration. That three slot ...
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  • 6,449
3 votes
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Door panel removal

The shiny plastic part of the lock lever is attached by a clip onto a metal rod that continues into the door panel and connects to the locking mechanism. The shiny plastic knob must be removed in ...
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3 votes
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Removing wheel housing liner - Understanding instructions

The instructions for cutting the piece out of it for the Auxiliary Heater are for when you are installing a new (or replacing rather) the wheel housing liner. You just need to follow the instructions ...
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3 votes

How do I apply a high quality and lasting finish on trim pieces?

It obviously depends very much on what kind of trim pieces you are wanting to respray. What they are made of and the sort of finish you are after. I am not sure what the trim is you wish to renovate ...
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3 votes
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Does body side molding damage the paint?

Yes Depends on how long it is on there, when the glue dries out it can be hard to remove without damaging the paint (if you need to do remove them for some reason), also the paint will not match ...
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3 votes
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Trim repair on a 2003 Ford Focus

Get something like 3M Super Weatherstrip Adhesive or Permatex Super Weatherstrip Adhesive. Follow the directions on the product. You'll probably want to use some painter's tape (the blue stuff) to ...
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3 votes

Programmatically defrost car windows?

The most convenient solutions are an electric engine block heater (as @mikes mentioned) or a petrol/diesel powered stationary heater. The latter is expensive, but generally more powerful than a block ...
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  • 4,402
2 votes

Programmatically defrost car windows?

You could have a block heater installed. A block heater is a heating element that runs on household current. It is usually installed either in place of a freeze plug or in line of a large radiator ...
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2 votes
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Is It Harmful to Have a Small Gap at the Bottom of Trunk Weatherstrip?

While it is not imperative that it is completely flush together, it will make a difference. You will have a leak possibility there. This is the reason you replaced the weather stripping in the first ...
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2 votes

Fuel Trim Readings

@Fred Wilson's comment is right on the money, high, positive long term fuel trims at idle that reduce at higher engine speeds indicate the presence of higher-than-normal unmetered air. The fact that ...
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  • 39k
2 votes

Are trims (Hubcaps) on a car tires necessary?

I have driven on steel wheels with no hub caps in the harsh Finnish road environment for about 6 years. I had hub caps on neither the winter wheels nor the summer wheels. No problems encountered. The ...
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  • 13.5k
2 votes

choosing between the many ways to fill exterior trim holes

Personally i would be looking at epoxy resin, fibre-glass or similar. If the panel or body can be rotated or oriented so it is near flat it will make things easier. Epoxy has a number of ...
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2 votes

Help identify the trim piece behind the front tire on a Mountaineer

Ford has a parts resource web site that appears to have the parts and the references, but as so many things internet, some of the results are obscured by too much detail. It appears that you are ...
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  • 3,572
1 vote
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Spilled lemonade in central console

I would bet the liquid was most likely absorbed by the carpet and/or underlayment (or sound deadener ... whatever you want to consider it). Some may have gone out the holes as you are thinking, but I ...
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1 vote

Trim level on the sticker inside my driver's door doesn't match any of the available trim levels of my vehicle

That could mean anything. It's a code intended for the folks who build the car, not so much as an indicator for the customer. My guess is the M represents a color code. The '1' for some other option ...
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  • 6,449
1 vote

How permanent is heat gun treatment in restoring faded black plastic trim?

I found a lot of conflicting information with regard to what exactly heating the plastic is doing. Some say releasing oils, other leaching pigment, releasing moisture, melting, and on and on. Seems ...
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1 vote

How permanent is heat gun treatment in restoring faded black plastic trim?

How exactly does this work? You're heating the plastic up to what's called its glass-transition temperature. I'm not a mechanical engineer, but my understanding is that the crystal structure of the ...
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1 vote
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Ford F150 quirk

Just to close this out...I discovered that someone bought and installed some type of "after market" stick on imitation chrome covers for door handles. So either one side fell off or they never did ...
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  • 163
1 vote

What is a "Suzuka" Honda CR-V?

It is most likely a model name linked to the Suzuka circuit - there was probably a race that they won around the time or an anniversary of a race that they won.
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  • 34.4k
1 vote

Door panel removal

From other cars I have worked on, you release the clips holding the panel on and pull it out to clear the button then slide it sideways off the handle.
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  • 34.4k
1 vote

choosing between the many ways to fill exterior trim holes

I'd plug weld the hole then dress the weld and lead load it or add a light skim of P38. If a job is worth doing, it's worth doing well. All other methods tend not to last as holes that have been ...
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1 vote

Removing wheel housing liner - Understanding instructions

So, if your car has the auxiliary heater, then you will have to remove that piece of plastic (?) 70 by 50 mm to clear pipes (probably). If you do not have that auxiliary heater, then the parts will ...
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  • 34.4k
1 vote
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Programmatically defrost car windows?

A tube heater (first hit on google) on the dashboard does a good job. You can either run a suitable extension through the door seal (I suggest the bottom in case of rain/snow/meltwater, and the ...
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  • 829
1 vote

Programmatically defrost car windows?

You're overthinking this. Just: start the car turn the heater on lock the car with the keyfob (engine and heater still running) go back inside your home and have a coffee for 20 minutes
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  • 12.1k
1 vote

Trim repair on a 2003 Ford Focus

It looks it is held by plastic rivets. You may be able to get them from dealer. Dealer can certainly help you with the information and if you don't ask them to fix, it shouldn't cost you anything.
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