I love cars, to me they are not just a functional piece of everyday life but more a work of art. Even the ugliest car had to be designed by someone who thought it was a good idea at the time. My kids are getting older and my youngest is learning to drive. We were fortunate to have a 1991 Toyota Camry dropped into our lap. A 30 year old “beater” that runs and drives and is in surprisingly good condition. The only problem is it has 30 year old paint, that has apparently never been waxed or polished. The goal is to do a paint correction that would give the car a great look from 10ft away (lol)
If you have been to my site before you know that I’m a DIY type of guy and that includes taking care of my cars. I have been hand washing and waxing my cars since I was 17 years old. Car care technology has changed over the last 30 years and I’m always looking for the next big thing to try on my vehicle. Lately there has been lots of talk about Ceramic Coating your car for the ultimate shine and protection.
I did a ton of research into different types of Ceramic Coatings and most of them have proven to be very expensive, and they come in small bottles so you could possibly need two to complete your car. Also, if you put too much on your paint could develop high spots and it could wind up worse than when you started.
Turtle wax 53409 hybrid solutions ceramic coating
We all rely on the 12 volt auxiliary power outlet (formerly know as the cigarette lighter) in our cars. They charge our phones, power our GPS, run our kids video games. When the power goes out it can really be frustrating. Most of the time these auxiliary power outlets are easy to fix and get back into service quickly and easily.
Sometimes its as simple as a fuse
The car auxiliary power outlet was designed in the early 1900’s for lighting cigarettes in automobiles and though we have a profound new view on smoking the outlet itself has not changed much since then. The shape of the outlet opens itself up to issues simply because small metal objects can become lodged in the socket causing short circuits. In all honesty, there have been quite a few times I had a penny fall into the auxiliary power outlet and caused a blown fuse.
In the case of my 2014 Dodge Charger I’m not exactly what caused the fuse to blow, but its a simple fix none the less.
Parts you will need
If you have read my blog before you would know that I’m a DIY kind of guy. I love to fix anything and everything including my own cars. Since the mid 90’s car computers and systems have become increasingly complex. Though it would be quite simple for most modern cars to display any errors and trouble codes on their numerous screens, the manufactures still love to light the check engine light! This is where the BlueDriver comes into play. The BlueDriver can help you scan your cars computer and not only read the trouble codes, but it also suggests common fixes for your issue.
A little history – Why the BlueDriver exists(or scan tools in general)
In the 1990’s the world was becoming more aware to the global warming crisis and how automobiles were contributing to the problem. Governments were trying to help by passing more stringent emissions standards. The problem was how could we insure the new emissions systems were properly working? The solution came in 1996 with the ODBII system On-Bard Diagnostic System 2. Prior to 1996 there were other more rudimentary systems, but ODBII was the standard for them all and still the standard today.
When an emissions fault was detected by the ODBII system it would light the MIL (Malfunction Indicator Lamp) also know as the check engine light. You would then take the car to your local dealer and they would use a scan tool to pull the error code to diagnose the malfunction. At first in the 90’s all cars had the same codes to diagnose emission issues, however as time went on manufactures started to add manufacture specific codes which required a manufacture specific scan tool.
The ODBII system grew into a robust diagnostic system that could not only report on your emission system, but also provide a wealth of information from live real time engine data to errors in baking systems, cooling systems, electrical issues, and so much more. Continue reading “BlueDriver is the best weekend mechanic scan tool for your car!”
If you have read my blog in the past you would know that I picked up my first classic car about six months ago. A 1985 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS! So far it has been a blast to drive and I have been enjoying it every chance I get. However through the month of November I was away for a couple weekends and the weather was poor for the rest so my SS went unused for about 6 weeks. Finally in mid December I had an opportunity to take the car out only to find the battery was drained and not enough juice left to turn her over. After talking to a few friends that also own classics they recommended I keep the battery topped off with a Battery Tender!
What is a battery tender and why do I need one?
There are a number of devices that can assist you with tending to your battery and starting your car. Continue reading “Choosing A Battery Tender For Your Classic Car”
My 2014 Dodge Charger threw a check engine light last week while my wife was driving home from work. After a brief read from my scan tool it was revealed that the error code is was P0128. Most likely culprit, the thermostat!
What is a P0128 error code?
The official meaning for the P0128 error code is “Coolant Temperature Below Thermostat Regulating Temperature” In plain English the car is basically saying that after a predetermined amount of time the coolant temperature has not come up to normal operating temperature. In other words the car is to cold! Modern fuel injected engines like to run at their specified operating temperature, and in the short term this is mainly a nuisance check-engine light, in the long run it could damage you engine and should be addressed. Continue reading “2014 – Dodge Charger – How To Fix P0128 Error Code”
In my previous post I went though the procedure to change out my Monte Carlo SS blower motor resistor Unfortunately that did not fix the issue and I moved on to the next component in the circuit. The blower motor relay. Again this is an inexpensive part and is worth the investment to repair my classic car.
I have to say that I now believe that Amazon carries everything or at least put you in contact with a vendor that has what you need.
Here is a link to the RY20 relay from Standard Motor Products that is an exact replacement to the existing relay. Under $14.00 at Amazon!
It’s midlife crisis time and I picked up a 1985 Monte Carlo SS. It’s in great condition for a car that’s 35 years old and runs like new. However with any car this old there are always little things that break and will need repair. I will be posting articles on items I repair maybe to help others in their quest. In this article I will be explaining how to easily repair a loose vent in your old Chevy.
In my Super Sport the air conditioner vents roll either to the left or right as soon as the blower fan turns on. This is quite annoying especially while I’m out cruising on a hot Summer day.
Vent Repair for $1.00
My oldest son drives a 2007 Honda Accord Coupe and like any 12 year old car the exterior is weathered and showing its age. The car isn’t worth much however to a college student on a limited income its worth its weight in freedom. Recently he began attempting to spruce up his ride and one area that needed attention was the wheels. The stock Honda rims were showing signs of corrosion and just looking bad.
He decided that paining the rims black would bring new life into them and at the same time make the ride more suitable for his age group. The goal here was NOT to make the rims perfect, but mainly to hide the corrosion and improve the look of the car on a college kids budget. (Under $100)
I would say they would have to pass the 10ft test. Do they look good from 10 feet away? Yes? Great you did a good job. Let’s get started.
TOOLS YOU NEED (Hopefully You have some of this)
- A good lug wrench $11.99 at Amazon
A nice set of jack stands $26.00 at Amazon
A decent floor jack $140 at Amazon Could be found cheaper at Harbor Freight Tools!
Wheel chock or something to put behind the wheels $17.00 at Amazon
My 18 year old son is driving a 2007 hand-me-down Honda Accord coupe and last week he came home and said, DAD – HELP! My trunk wont open. I immediately said did you overload the trunk with your hockey equipment and one of the bag straps get caught in the striker? He said no way, it opened at the hockey rink when I put my bag in the back, but now its stuck.
HOW TO GAIN ACCESS TO THE TRUNK
I initially tried pulling up on the trunk lid, even slid a crowbar in between the lid and the bumper (yes I know dumb move, but hey its a 12 year old car so its already scratched). I could here the electric solenoid trying to pull the lock open and we even pulled the manual release from up front. NO JOY. Its a good thing the back seats fold down in this car because we were able to gain access to the trunk and remove most of the contents. Finally my son was able to hit the emergency release on the latch and POP the trunk opened.