Tag Archive for tips

Working on Cars – Tips That Might Help

working on cars lead

Experience is a great teacher. Here are some things I’ve learned over the years working on cars that may help you avoid hassles when working on your car: * Remove the fill plug before you remove the drain plug – This applies mostly to manual transmissions and rear axles, which typically have a drain plug…

Modern Car Knowledge

Hot chick working on her car

If you haven’t been under the hood of a new-ish car lately – or (just as important) read one of their owner’s manuals – here are a few things to know that you might not yet know about, but probably should: * Don’t use anti-seize compound on spark plug threads – Well, check first to…

Never Get in Trouble Trying to Fix Your Car

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Probably the main reason many people don’t dare do it themselves is they’re afraid of not doing it right. More to the point, they’re afraid of doing it wrong – breaking something, or making a problem worse. But unlike surgery on people, cars are harder to permanently hurt. If you approach the “operation” from the…

Did You Know . . . ?

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As with software (and hardware) every now and again, it’s necessary to do an update. Same goes for automotive knowledge. Maybe a better term would be conventional wisdom. Things change – and new things come along. For instance: A lot of people still assume that 28-32 pounds of air in a tire is about right.…

Check Before Your Pour … and Before You Fill!

oil change lead

The other day, I changed the oil/filter in one of my old cars. Because I have a small fleet of antique vehicles, as well as several “daily drivers” (plus a lot of equipment, including a tractor, riding mower, generator – you get the drift) that also need their oil/filters changed periodically, it is easy to…

Politically Incorrect Teenager Driver Tips

teenage drivers

What type of car is a good choice for a teenaged driver? I get asked this a lot. Everyone’s got an opinion. Here’s mine: * Avoid giving your teen an underpowered car. This may seem counterintuitive – and it’s probably the polar opposite of everything you’ve heard from “safety” experts. If fast cars are a…

Does it Ever Make Sense to Buy a New Car?

I’ll probably get in trouble. After all, I write new car reviews. Advising people not to buy new cars is not what you’d probably expect. But, here’s the fulsome scurvy truth: I – and every car journalist I know – drive used. Because we know. And now, I’m gonna spill the beans, give you the…

Fixing Their Wagon

People are frustrated – and want to know what they can do. It gets old merely talking. They – our oppressors – don’t care how much we talk. Perhaps then it is time for us to act. But we must not act precipitously, much less suicidally. A Wagnerian last stand is exactly that. Leaving a…

The Mantra

Sun Tzu counseled that it is madness – because pointless – to directly confront a superior foe. A costumed goon with a badge and a gun, for instance. You will lose (cue Dolph Lundgren voice from Rocky IV). But that doesn’t mean you must cooperate with said goon. In that spirit, here are some practical…

Cold Weather Crutches

You think it’s hard on you when it’s 10 degrees outside? Think about your car. You may feel cold. Your car is cold. If it’s 10 degrees outside, that’s the temperature of your car. Its engine. The oil in the engine. Everything else, too. Now imagine being subjected to sudden extremes of pressure, friction and…