Kamis, 29 November 2012

How to Clear Computer Codes in a 1998 Ford Windstar

The onboard computer on a 1998 Ford Windstar, known as a power train control module (PCM), monitors the power train management systems. In the event the PCM detects a fault, it generates a diagnostic trouble code, which turns on the check engine light to alert you about the malfunction. Once you've run the codes, diagnosed the Windstar and fixed the problem, you need to clear the codes from the computer. Anyone with basic auto-repair knowledge can perform this task in less than 15 minutes.

Instructions

    1

    Remove the black plastic dust cover on the Windstar's diagnostic port located under the dashboard near the steering column. Connect your scan tool's datalink cable to the port.

    2

    Turn the ignition key to the run position. Perform a quick test on the Windstar's PCM per your scan tool's specific instructions.

    3

    Erase the Windstar's diagnostic trouble codes when prompted to do so by your scan tool. Complete the quick test and disconnect the datalink cable from the Windstar's diagnostic port. Put the dust cover back on the port.

    4

    Shut the ignition off.

How to Test for Electric Power Window Problems in a Chevy Malibu

How to Test for Electric Power Window Problems in a Chevy Malibu

The power windows in your Chevy Malibu are part of a system with switches at each window, a motor and regulator at each window and a master control panel at the driver's position. There are also a number of fuses and relays to protect the main components from damage. Troubleshooting is a matter of trial and elimination.

Instructions

    1

    Check that the ignition switch is on and the driver's panel lock-out switch is not engaged. Check the fuse panel to make sure the fuse is intact. If the window works from the driver's control panel, move to the door testing step. If neither rear window works, check the rear window lockout switch for continuity.

    2

    Use the 12v test light to verify that current is reaching the window operating switch by connecting the tester clip to a solid ground and touching the probe to the wire. Use the continuity tester to check the switch for an open circuit by connecting the leads across the switch terminals.

    3

    If the switch has power and is working properly, use the door panel removal tool to check the wiring inside the door panel and the current from the switch to the motor. If there is current to the motor, you should replace it.

Rabu, 28 November 2012

How to Determine a Trailer Wheel Bolt Size

How to Determine a Trailer Wheel Bolt Size

Trailers serve many purposes on today's roads, whether as camper trailers, car haulers, or landscaping trailers. When mounting or removing wheels from a trailer, it is important to know the size and length of the lug studs or bolts, in order to get a proper fitting for the wheel, tire clearance, and lug nuts. Measuring a wheel stud or bolt is a fairly simple project which should take you no longer than 10 minute.

Instructions

    1

    Remove one of the lug nuts from a lug stud, using a tire iron. Turn the wheel nut counterclockwise until you can remove it by hand. Pull the lug nut completely free of the stud.

    2

    Measure the distance across the tip of the stud or bolt, not counting the threads. The distance across the stud is the size of the lug stud or wheel bolt. (Example: If you measure the tip of the stud and the tape measure indicates 3/8-inches, then the stud is a 3/8-inch stud.)

    3

    Replace the lug nut onto the stud, and tighten the lug nut to the manufacturers recommendations with a torque wrench and wheel socket.

Selasa, 27 November 2012

What Are the Causes of No Fuel Through the Fuel Injectors on 1997 Ford F150 5.4 Engine?

Even as technology and methods of fuel delivery have advanced over the years, the fuel system on your 5.4-liter remains rather simplistic. A lack of fuel at the fuel injectors can be caused by faulty equipment, blockages at the fuel pump and/or filter or electrical problems. Because the fuel system has several different components, investigating every part of the fuel system will be necessary to accurately diagnose and repair your fuel delivery problem.

The Fuel System

    The fuel system on your 1997 F150 routes fuel from the fuel pump, through the fuel filter, the pressure regulator and into the fuel rail, where it is then released through the injectors and into the engine's intake manifold for combustion. Your fuel injectors are controlled by the powertrain control module, while the pressure regulator is controlled by the natural vacuum created by the engine during operation. The fuel pump only receives power when the PCM energizes the fuel pump relay.

Fuel Shutoff Switch

    Your truck is equipped with an inertia-based fuel shut-off switch that is designed to kill power to the fuel pump in the event of a collision. Ford has been implementing these switches for years and they have been known to trip for little or no reason from time to time in older models; even hitting large potholes have been known to cause this problem. The switch is located behind the passenger side kick panel, which can be pried away from the interior trim to expose the box-like switch. A red button marked Reset is located at the top of the switch. If the switch was tripped for any reason, the button will travel downward when pressed and restore power to the fuel circuit.

Fuel Pump Relay

    The heart of your fuel system is the fuel pump. When the key is turned on, the PCM will energize the fuel pump relayand send power to the fuel pump for several seconds; when the engine is running the relay is always energized so that there will be an uninterrupted supply of fuel to the fuel injectors. Find your fuel pump relay in the under-hood fuse box; it is located on the right row of the fuse box and is second from the bottom. The relay for the horn is located directly above it; swap the relays and test the horn to see if it horn works. Try to start the engine, if the horn works. If the engine will start and is receiving gas, return the relays to their original positions. If the engine will not start, procure a new fuel pump relay.

Fuel Filter

    Your fuel filter is the last line of defense against contaminants from the gas tank entering into the fuel rail and injectors. The filter is located between the fuel tank and the engine on the left hand frame rail. A clogged fuel filter can cause extreme hesitation and even prevent fuel from making it to the engine at all. If the fuel filter hasn't been changed in the last year, this may be your problem. To remove the fuel filter, pry the filter upward and remove the backup clips holding both ends of the fuel line to the filter. Slide a Ford quick disconnect tool into each side of the fuel filter and pull the fuel lines off of the filter. Set a new filter into place and re-install the securing clips. Try to start the engine and see if your problem has been solved; at least, you will have a fresh fuel filter that wont need to changed for another yet.

After Thoughts

    Once you have checked the fuel pump relay, fuel shut-off switch and fuel filter, the only remaining problems would be a faulty fuel pump or the wiring from the fuel relay to the fuel pump. Set the key to the on position, without starting the engine, and position yourself under the vehicle. Disconnect the electrical harness from the fuel pump. Peel back a bit of the wire loom and locate the pink and black wire. Probe the pink and black wire with a voltmeter's red probe, setting the meter's black probe against a known good ground: you should receive a reading of 12 volts or better. A low voltage indicates either a short to ground in the wiring to the pump, but be aware that it if the truck isn't running the battery may have been drained over the previous testing and may give a slightly lower result. If the voltage at the fuel pump reads 12 volts or better the pump is bad and needs to be replaced.

Senin, 26 November 2012

Idle Control Valve Symptoms

Idle Control Valve Symptoms

The idle air control valve on your car or truck works by adjusting the airflow inside your vehicle's throttle body in order to control the engine idle. The idle air control valve commonly develops problems due to carbon build-up and blockage caused by exposure to the gases and debris from the engine's operations. You may notice several different problems with your vehicle in the event that your idle air control valve stops functioning properly.

Stalling

    One of the problems associated with a clogged idle air control valve is stalling. The stalling will occur because the correct amount of airflow is not getting through the intake due to the clogged valve. This will cause your vehicle's engine to stall out unexpectedly. This will typically occur while idling or at low speeds and should not be as much of an issue at high speeds.

Rough Idle

    A partially malfunctioning or clogged idle air control valve will cause your vehicle not to idle properly. The vehicle's idle is the main thing your IAC valve controls, so problems with the valve will affect the way the vehicle idles. In some cases the vehicle sounds like it is about to stall out and then idles at a higher than normal rpm, only to drop back down a moment later.

Runs After the Engine is Shut Off

    If you turn your vehicle off and the engine continues to run for a moment or two, there is a good chance your vehicle has a faulty idle air control valve. The IAC is causing a lag between you turning off the key and the engine receiving the message to cut off and stop working.

Minggu, 25 November 2012

How to Reset the Fault Code on a Jeep Cherokee

How to Reset the Fault Code on a Jeep Cherokee

The Jeep Cherokee's engine includes a computer that monitors several sensors. If a sensor reports a problem, the computer will display the check engine light on the dashboard. This tells the driver there is a problem that needs to be assessed. Once the problem is corrected, you can reset the fault codes yourself.

Instructions

    1

    Pull the release lever to open the hood from inside the vehicle. The lever is located underneath the steering wheel on the dashboard.

    2

    Open the hood and place the support rod into position to prop up the hood.

    3

    Remove the nut connecting the negative battery terminal to the battery, using an open end wrench.

    4

    Allow the computer to reset. This will take roughly 30 minutes.

    5

    Reconnect the negative terminal to the battery. Tighten the bolt using an open end wrench.

    6

    Close the hood and start the engine. If the check engine light re-appears, there is still a problem with the engine that must be addressed.

How to Know When the A/C Compressor Is Bad

How to Know When the A/C Compressor Is Bad

Air conditioning, or A/C, is a comfort item that many people take for granted, even in automobiles. Most people don't imagine what it would be like to have no air conditioning in their car, until a problem occurs. The compressor is a common cause of A/C problems. It is an expensive part to replace, so it is important to be sure that the compressor is the problem before making the repair. The only way to know if the compressor is bad is to do a process of elimination by checking the other possible causes first.

Instructions

    1

    Check for a bad fuse. Refer to the car's owner manual to locate the position of the specific fuse that governs power to the car's electrical system. Access the fuse panel, typically located under the steering wheel, and find the fuse that corresponds to the A/C. Use a fuse puller to remove the fuse. Hold it up to the light to inspect it for breaks or burns. If the fuse looks bad, replace it with a new fuse and retest the air conditioning.

    2

    Test the belt and pulley. The compressor will have a belt-driven pulley attached to it. Check to see if the belt is broken. If so, replace it with a new belt. If the belt is in tact, try to rotate the pulley. Use your hand to turn the pulley one complete cycle. If the pulley is stiff and will not turn, the problem with the air conditioning is that the pulley bearings are bad and must be replaced.

    3

    Use an electrical multimeter to test the air conditioner's coil. Place the red node of the multimeter on the positive terminal of the coil and touch the black node anywhere on the car body. Check to see if electric current is present in the coil.

    4

    Inspect the A/C clutch. The clutch is a lever that is used to engage and disengage the air conditioning. Grab the clutch with your hand and see if it will move back and forth. If the clutch will not move, the compressor shaft has seized, and the whole compressor must be replaced.

Sabtu, 24 November 2012

What Is a Fuel Sender?

Many components in our vehicles help them operate properly and usually together. One such component is the fuel sender -- a device that may vary in placement and size from vehicle to vehicle but always performs the same function.

Fuel Sender

    The fuel sender resides in the fuel tank and consists of a float, which is attached to a long metal rod attached to a variable resistor. This resistor measures the amount of pressure the float puts on the bar. As the fuel goes down, the float goes down with it.

Purpose

    The fuel sender helps measure the amount of fuel in your tank. As it dips, the electrical current in the variable resistor sends weaker electrical signals to your fuel gauge. The gauge will then drop accordingly.

Problems

    The fuel sender may give inaccurate readings to your fuel gauge, which can be problematic if you are running low on gas. It takes awhile for the fuel sender to drop, which may make it seem like you have more gas than you actually do. However, the fuel may also dip to its lowest point before you are actually out of gas.

PO751 Fault Code on a '97 Ford Taurus

Ford Motor Company released an all new sedan and station wagon in 1986 known as the Ford Taurus. It carried a radical aerodynamic design that was seldom seen on this side of the world especially for a sedan or station wagon. The Taurus quickly became an American favorite, and was even used as the official cop car in the move Robocop. From 1992 to 1996, it was the best selling car in the United States market. By the 1996 model year, all production models from Ford came with on-board-diagnostics II, which was an advanced version of the diagnostic system used previously. This system allows mechanics to pull up to hundreds of trouble codes related to the engine, powertrain, emissions and even the brake system. If your 1997 Ford Taurus has set trouble code P0751, that means there is an error with the control circuit within the transmission, and youve likely experienced transmission problems as well.

What P0751 Means

    P0751 means that there has been a fault detected in relation to shift solenoid No. 1. This code will only be set if this error has been detected at least twice, while the vehicle is driving and the solenoid is triggered on for one of various shifting functions of the transmission.

The Cause

    Normally this code means that either shift solenoid No. 1 has failed and is stuck in the off position, or there is a wiring fault between the PCM and the solenoid. The fault could also be related to the seal on the solenoid, or there could be a failure with the valve it controls inside the valve body. In rare cases, the PCM has failed, but this is very limited and will normally result in other trouble codes as well.

The Signs and Symptoms of a Seized Engine

The Signs and Symptoms of a Seized Engine

A car's engine is like a delicate ballet or a synchronized swimming event; everything must work in perfect harmony or the whole thing is thrown off. An engine, however, does not just get up and start over. It typically causes major damages when all of its components are not working properly. One thing that can happen is that the engine can seize. Seizing of the engine is when a major component stops moving, stopping the entire engine.

Nothing

    When an engine seizes, the tell-tale sign is nothing. You attempt to turn the vehicle over, and all of the electronics seem to work: radio turns on, heater fan blows and the lights turn on. When you attempt to crank the vehicle's engine though, nothing happens except a loud clunking noise from the vehicle's starter impacting the engine's flywheel.

Inside-out

    When an engine seizes, a lot of times it is due to an internal component coming loose and lodging against another component. Sometimes, this component -- typically a piston connecting rod -- can penetrate the engine block and pierce through to the outside. In some cases, the component that is now piecred through the engine block can be seen from the top.

Burning Wires

    When an engine seizes and can no longer move, the starter will still attempt to crank the engine when the key is turned. Because the starter cannot turn the motor, the electric wires can overheat and begin smoking, a tell-tale sign of a seized engine.

Testing

    There are a few ways to test for a seized engine, but one procedure stands out as the most reliable. Try to turn the crankshaft pulley on the engine -- the large pulley in the middle of the engine. The best way to do this is to remove all of the spark plugs, place a large socket on the crankshaft pulley bolt and turn the socket with a large breaker bar. If the crank does not move, it is very likely the engine is seized.

Precursors

    There are plenty of warnings given before an engine seizes. The initial stages are very light tapping noises or even a faint knocking sound. You'll know the end is near when you hear what technicians call a "dead knock." This is a loud knocking sound that lacks any metallic pinging sound. This "dead knock" is typically the piston connecting rod hitting the engine's crank shaft.

Repairing

    Repairing a seized engine really depends on what actually caused the seize. Typically, the best mode of repair is to replace the entire engine, as the internal damage may be very heavy. If repairing the engine is best -- high-performance engines or a rare engine -- you can anticipate replacing nearly all of the internal components and having the engine block repaired by a machine shop, both of which are very costly.

How to Check the Engine on a 99 Cougar

How to Check the Engine on a 99 Cougar

Checking an engine by trial and error can be needlessly time consuming. Since your 1999 Mercury Cougar was manufactured after 1996, it is equipped with On-Board Diagnostics (OBD). As the the OBD-II system runs routine tests, it catalogs problems. These malfunctions are grouped into two classes, pending codes and trouble codes. Once a "pending" problem is sensed often enough, the Cougar's computer will classify it as a trouble code, resulting in the service engine light coming on. Both types of codes can save a lot of time in the process of checking an engine.

Instructions

    1

    Open the Cougar's driver side door and look beneath the dash. The Cougar's data link connection is located to the left of the steering column. It is a 16-pin receiving outlet that serves as an entry point to all of the vehicle's diagnostic scanners.

    2

    Plug your OBD-II scanner into the Cougar's data link connection.

    3

    Either turn the Cougar's electrical system on, or start the engine. Turn your scanner on, if your scanner is not programmed to auto-start once a connection is sensed.

    4

    Look at the codes on your scanner's screen. If they were not instantly and automatically retrieved, you will have to key in a retrieve command. Your scanner will differentiate between what is a trouble code and what is pending. Attend to the trouble codes first, as they caused the Cougar's service light to come on. If you do not have trouble codes, scroll through the pending codes. These could be anomalies, or they could be a sign of a developing problem.

    5

    Look up the codes in the scanner's manual. The code list should be found toward the back of the manual, either as a chapter or an appendix. The codes are universal to all OBD compliant vehicles. Mercury's supplemental codes can be found online. Once you have found descriptions for all the codes reported, you can start examining the engine in a more focused way.

Jumat, 23 November 2012

How to Troubleshoot a Vacuum Leak in a Car

How to Troubleshoot a Vacuum Leak in a Car

The internal combustion engine functions as a sealed container of controlled explosions. The engine requires air (oxygen) for combustion, drawing it in through air an filtering source. Sometimes extra air enters into the system through a failed seal, belonging either to a component, or vacuum line that has broken or disconnected. These are called vacuum leaks, and they can originate from several sources. Vacuum leaks upset the air-to-fuel ratio and can cause lean misfire, poor engine performance and changes in fuel economy. An observant vehicle owner can find these leaks by using a few tools and learned techniques.

Instructions

Troubleshooting Vacuum Leaks

    1

    Place the vehicle in park or neutral with the emergency brake engaged. Start the engine and raise the hood. While the engine idles, listen for any hissing or whistling noises coming from the base of the throttle body, carburetor or intake manifold. The noise might accompany a stumbling engine or rough idle. The sucking air noise will indicate a vacuum leak at a gasket seal. Notice if the engine idle shows a higher than normal rpm reading, or if the carburetor refuses to adjust down for speed or mixture setting. A small vacuum leak will increase the idle speed and will not adjust down.

    2

    Check all vacuum lines and hoses for cracks and disconnections while the engine idles. Look at the vacuum line connections at the throttle body base, or carburetor base gasket (if you have one). Examine the large PCV valve hose that enters the valve cover for a proper seal and good condition. Examine the large booster hose for disconnection at the brake booster diaphragm. Check the condition of the grommet seal--a vacuum leak at the brake booster will cause your brake pedal to feel "hard." Check all vacuum lines at sensor ports for a correct seal and line condition.

    3

    Use a can of carburetor cleaner to spray around the area of the intake manifold, throttle bottle base or carburetor base gasket. Look for any change in engine rpm which will rise when the carburetor spray hits near the source of the vacuum leak. Be extremely careful not to spray the carburetor cleaner near the spark plug locations or plugs wires.

    4

    Hook up a vacuum gauge to any vacuum source line or hose near the intake manifold. Refer to your owner's manual for the proper vacuum reading in inches of mercury (Hg). If the gauge shows a too low reading, it indicates a vacuum leak. Generally, for most cars, any reading that does not stay within 16 to 22 inches of mercury and falls below that number will point to a vacuum leak.

My Tail Light Won't Blink

My Tail Light Won't Blink

All of the vehicle lights must function for the driver to operate safely in a driving environment. This includes times of limited visibility brought on by snow, rain, haze, hail and nighttime conditions. Missing or defective bulbs in your vehicle's lighting system can garner fix-it tickets and citations. Turn signals -- or the blinking taillights -- alert other drivers to your turning direction. If the turn signals do not blink, accidents can result from a driver misinterpreting your intentions. Finding the problem of a non-blinking taillight requires a few steps and basic tools.

Instructions

    1

    Place the vehicle in park or neutral with the emergency brake set. Raise the hood. Disconnect the negative battery cable with a socket and wrench. Locate the nonfunctional taillight. Use a screwdriver to remove the lens housing on the taillight.

    You must access some rear taillights from the inner trunk panel; remove the plastic cover panel by turning the release snaps with a screwdriver. If unsure of the access, refer to your owner's manual. Slide the taillight housing out.

    2

    Twist the bulb socket ring until it aligns with the notches on the housing. Pull the bulb socket out. Use a rag to grip the bulb, then push down and twist. Look at the bulb filament, making sure it has not blown. Replace the bulb with the exact type design and number if the filament has melted and disconnected. If the bulb appears good, use contact cleaner and a Q-tip to clean the inside of the bulb socket seat. Clean and tighten the small ground strap wire on the housing, using a socket and contact cleaner.

    3

    Check the copper contacts in the socket for breakage. If the bulb contains two filaments, but only one filament appears blown, you must replace the bulb. Refer to your owner's manual to make certain the bulb has a standard number designation. Heavy-duty bulbs will not work in a standard socket. Replace the heavy-duty bulb with a standard bulb. Standard bulbs have numbers such as 1034 and 1157. Insert the new bulb, and remount the taillight lens with a screwdriver. Test for operation.

    4

    Locate the nonfunctional taillight bulb. Remove the taillight lens as you did in the previous step. If the bulb appears good, go to the turn signal indicator lens at the front of the vehicle that sits on the same side as the nonfunctional taillight. Use a screwdriver to remove the lens housing, either from outside the grille or from inside the grille panel. Use a screwdriver to unsnap the clips to remove the housing, if equipped with that design.

    5

    Twist the bulb socket from the lens housing, then use a rag to grip the bulb and twist it out. Clean the bulb socket contacts with a O-tip and electrical contact spray. Examine the bulb filament. If the filament appears blown, replace it with the correct size and design. This will solve a defective rear taillight signal malfunction because most front and rear turn signals operate off the same circuit wire. Replace the lens, and secure the screws with a screwdriver, or snap the clips back in place.

    6

    Refer to your owner's repair manual for the location of your main fuse box. Some sit behind the driver's plastic kit panel, while others mount inside the glove box or sit in the engine compartment. Unsnap the lid on the fuse box, and locate the taillight fuse. Use a fuse puller to pull the tube-type fuse out, and fingers to pull out the spade fuse. Look at the interior filament. If the filament appears melted or disconnected, replace it with same type and amperage rating.

    7

    Locate the turn signal relay. It looks like a small box, usually plugged into the fuse box. It might be a separate unit tied into the wiring loom under the dashboard on the driver's side. Unplug the relay, and replace it with an exact duplicate. Some additional relays in your fuse box have the same amperage and plug configuration. Swap it temporarily to see if the taillight blinks when you turn the indicator. If the taillight functions with the swap, permanently replace the relay.

Kamis, 22 November 2012

Problems With a Three-Speed Automatic Transmission

Most cars with automatic transmissions have three speeds along with overdrive, though not all transmissions offer overdrive. A number of issues can occur with these transmissions, though proper transmission maintenance will minimize problems. Transmission maintenance includes performing regular fluid changes and servicing the transmission in accordance to the manufacturer's guidelines.

Overdrive

    Many drivers are uncertain whether they should drive their vehicle with the overdrive function turned on or off. Most vehicles are actually designed for operation with the overdrive turned on. When drivers fail to turn the overdrive on and drive around in third gear all the time, it can shorten the life of the transmission.

Fluids

    Automatic transmissions are fairly sensitive to the type of transmission fluid you use. Using the wrong type of fluid for your transmission or allowing the fluid to go too long between changes can damage your transmission. Old transmission fluid does not provide as much lubrication as new fluid.

Overheating

    A variety of factors can cause an automatic transmission to overheat. These include strenuous driving conditions, excessively heavy tow loads, low transmission fluid or a malfunctioning torque converter. Overheating does not affect manual transmissions, but it can prove quickly fatal for an automatic. Most newer vehicles come equipped with transmission temperature sensors that turn on warning lights on the dashboard if your car's automatic transmission becomes too hot.

How to Retrieve Ford C Codes

In the second generation of On-Board Diagnostic coding, the letter "C" stands for "chassis." Diagnostics predating 1996 usually consist of two to three numeric sequences. OBD-II "C" codes are outside of the domain of a vehicle's powertrain and can include issues with wheels, axles, and a variety of circuits and sensors. Checking for these types of trouble codes is just as easy as checking for powertrain or "P" codes.

Instructions

    1

    Insert a diagnostic code scanner's cable into the vehicle's diagnostic part. This outlet should be located somewhere beneath the dashboard and steering wheel. If you have trouble locating this outlet, there are applications online that can help, like the locator featured at carmd.com (see References).

    2

    Start the car's engine. What happens next depends on the exact diagnostic scanner you own. Some will turn themselves on if a connection to a vehicle's diagnostic system is detected. Some will have to be switched on via the power button. Also, some scanner's will require you to key in a command to retrieve trouble codes, and some will do that automatically.

    3

    Scroll through the reported trouble codes, if more than one has been retrieved. Look for alpha-numeric sequences beginning with "C." For example: "C0315."

    4

    Consult your scanner's owner manual for the description of specific "C" trouble codes. For example, "C0315" means "Motor Ground Circuit Open." Should you not find the code in your manual, lists of OBD-II codes are available online (See Resources). Most owner's manuals will not contain that information.

Troubleshooting a Jeep Coolant Sensor

Troubleshooting a Jeep Coolant Sensor

The coolant sensor in a Jeep tells you when the coolant in the radiator becomes too low to safely operate the vehicle. If this sensor fails to notify you via the dash panel light and an audible beeping sound, you may not know that the radiator has sprung a leak. This could leave you stranded by the side of the road, or worse, it could leave you with a few thousand dollars in engine repair bills. If you fear your Jeep's coolant sensor isn't working, there is one easy way to troubleshoot the problem.

Instructions

    1

    Place a drain pan directly under the petcock on your radiator. The petcock is on the driver's side and at the bottom of the radiator.

    2

    Twist the petcock counterclockwise with a pair of pliers and drain 2 gallons of fluid into the drain pan. Close the petcock by turning it clockwise with the pliers.

    3

    Turn the Jeep on for a two minutes. The light should come on when the coolant levels in the radiator begin to fall. Draining 2 gallons should trigger the sensor, and the "Coolant" light should illuminate on the dash panel. If it does not, the sensor is defective. If it does, the sensor works.

    4

    Open the radiator cap on the top of the radiator and place a funnel into the hole. Drain the coolant back into the radiator.

Rabu, 21 November 2012

How to Troubleshoot a Chevrolet Vehicle

Troubleshooting a Chevrolet vehicle takes time, depending on the problem. The Chevrolet has three major systems that should be checked first to rule out unnecessary steps: the computer, ignition system and fuel system. Components within each system could cause the Chevrolet not to start or to run poorly.

Instructions

Computer System

    1

    Start the engine. If it will not start, check the fuel and ignitions systems first.

    2

    Check to see if the engine light is on. If it is not on, the problem is most likely in the ignition or fuel systems. Skip the rest of this section. If the engine light is on, plug the code scanner into the data port, which is located under the dash and to the left of the steering column.

    3

    Press the "Read" button to read the codes. Write down the codes and compare them with the code sheet that comes with the code scanner. Unplug the code scanner.

    4

    Repair the problem component. Plug the code scanner back into the data port. Press the "Erase" button. Start the vehicle. Test-drive it to be sure the engine light stays out and you have corrected the problem. If the engine light comes on again, repeat this process.

Ignition System

    5

    Pull one of the spark plug wires off a spark plug. Stick a new spark plug into the wire. Lay the wire on a good ground -- any metal part of the engine works as long as it's not aluminum.

    6

    Ask a helper to crank the engine over while you watch the spark plug. If you can see a spark, the ignition system is working. If not, further testing is needed.

    7

    Test the ignition switch, coil, distributor and spark plug wires. Test the battery, alternator and starter. Each Chevrolet vehicle has its own specifications for the ignition system. You could test the system with a computer and voltmeter, or you could bring it to a shop or the dealership.

Fuel System

    8

    Remove the Schrader valve cap on the fuel rail. Place rags underneath the Schrader valve. Push the valve stem down and have a helper crank the vehicle. If fuel shoots a couple feet in the air and continues to do so while the engine is cranking, the problem is not in the fuel system. If fuel dribbles out or slows, check the rest of the fuel system.

    9

    Test the relay. Locate the relay box on or near the driver's side fender well. Using the diagram on the underside of the cover, locate the fuel pump relay. Each relay has a set of numbers on it. If the numbers on the pump relay match the numbers on another relay (say for the fan) switch the relays. If the vehicle starts, the problem is with the relay. Replace the relay. If the vehicle does not start, swap the relays back to their original positions. Don't switch with the starter relay because you need that relay to start the vehicle.

    10

    Test the fuel pump and fuel pump wiring using the voltmeter. Each component for each model has its own parameters. Consult your vehicle's repair manual, or you can have an auto technician further diagnose your vehicle.

My 1990 Mazda Miata MX-5 Lights Won't Go Down When Off

The 1990 Mazda MX-5 Miata has an electronic motor that raises and lowers the headlights when you activate them. On the 1990 Miata you must both turn on the headlight switch and press the center dash headlight button to raise the lights. If your lights become stuck in the "Up" position when you turn off the lights and press the center dash headlight button, you might have a damaged fuse or headlight switch. You can check and replace both of the components to make the headlights work again.

Instructions

Replace Headlight Fuse

    1

    Remove the fuse cover panel to the left of the steering column beneath the dash. Pull the cover directly downward to remove it.

    2

    Look on the underside of the fuse cover panel and locate the "HEADLT RETRACTORS" fuse on the fuse diagram printed there. The diagram shows the location of each fuse in the vehicle.

    3

    Locate the corresponding fuse on the fuse panel.

    4

    Grasp the fuse and pull it directly out of the fuse panel to remove it.

    5

    Examine the metal strip in the fuse to make sure it has no damage. Replace the fuse, if damaged.

Replace Headlight Switch

    6

    Orient the center dash vents so that they point straight back.

    7

    Insert a thin piece of rope into the top of one of the vents, pass it behind the center of the vent and out of the bottom.

    8

    Pull directly back on both ends of the rope until the vent slides out. Repeat on the other center vent.

    9

    Remove the screws on the inner top portion of each vent hole (one screw in each vent hole) using a Phillips screwdriver.

    10

    Grasp the gearshift knob and twist counterclockwise to unscrew it. Remove the gearshift knob.

    11

    Remove the screw on the right and left side of the center console unit (to the right and left of the gearshift) using a Phillips screwdriver.

    12

    Lift out the ashtray and remove the screw below using a Phillips screwdriver.

    13

    Open the center console storage compartment and remove the two screws at the bottom using a Phillips screwdriver.

    14

    Lift up on the center console and disconnect the electrical connectors below the unit, near the gear shifter. Remove the center console.

    15

    Remove the screws at the base of the center dash panel using a Phillips screwdriver. There is one screw on each side where the center console joins with the center dash panel.

    16

    Grasp the sides of the center dash panel near the thermostat and pull toward the back of the vehicle to disengage the clips. Pull the panel back until you can access the headlight switch connector behind the dash panel, between the two air vents.

    17

    Unplug the headlight connector and completely remove the center dash panel.

    18

    Remove the screws on the back side of the headlight switch on the center dash panel using a Phillips screwdriver. Remove the switch.

    19

    Replace with a new switch and reassemble the dash.

How to Diagnose Sticking Brake Calipers

How to Diagnose Sticking Brake Calipers

Brake calipers can stick in a couple of ways, The brake caliper pistons can stick, which can cause premature wear of the brake pads. The caliper's slide bolts (if equipped) can stick as well. Unlike caliper pistons, often these bolts can be cleaned and re-lubricated and reused. While pistons on calipers used to be repaired, it's more affordable now to replace them with re-manufactured calipers.

Instructions

    1

    Start the vehicle and place it in gear or drive on a flat surface. Release the clutch slowly for a standard transmission, or release the brake pedal for an automatic transmission. If the vehicle rolls slowly, apply the brake hard. Let the vehicle move slowly forward again. If it feels like it's sluggish or does not move at all after the brakes have been applied hard, this could indicate sticking calipers.

    2

    Test drive the vehicle. Apply the brakes in a low-traffic area while holding the steering wheel firmly. Apply the brakes a few times. This will heat the brakes up on the wheel with the faulty caliper piston, which will aid in the diagnosis.

    3

    Park the vehicle on a flat surface. Place a hand near each tire without touching the rim. If one rim has intense heat coming from it after the test drive, this might be the wheel with the faulty caliper.

    4

    Place a wheel chock against the outside tread of a tire on the opposite axle from the brake caliper being diagnosed.

    5

    Loosen the lug nuts on the vehicle a full turn with the lug nut wrench.

    6

    Hoist the quarter of the vehicle with the jack and support it onto a jack stand.

    7

    Check the temperature of the rim and lug nuts before attempting to fully remove the lug nuts. If necessary, allow time for them to cool before proceeding. Remove the lug nuts when ready, then remove the wheel.

    8

    Check the temperature of the caliper with your hand before attempting to touch it. If necessary, allow time for the caliper to cool before proceeding.

    9

    Remove the caliper bolts with a wrench or ratchet and suitable socket. Alternatively, you can try to compress the caliper first using a C-clamp. This should be done on front calipers only. Rear caliper pistons on many models require a caliper piston tool kit.

    If the piston of the front caliper compresses, then the caliper piston is good. Try to move the caliper back and forth by hand to determine if the slides (or slide bolts) are sticking. If the piston compressed, but there is no movement in the caliper, the slides or slide bolts need to be removed, cleaned and lubricated.

    10

    Pry the caliper off of the integral knuckle with a pry bar. Some calipers have pads attached to the housing, while others will leave the pads behind on the knuckle. Hang the caliper to a suspension component to avoid letting it hang from its hydraulic hose.

    For pads left on the knuckles, check the pads for movement across the integral knuckle, where the backing plates of the pads contact the knuckle. Often, pads can become dry from heat and exposure and begin to stick on the knuckles, which might give off a false symptom of a sticking caliper.

    11

    Compress the piston for the rear caliper, or if the front caliper piston could not be compressed as illustrated in Step 8. For rear screw-in pistons, use the tool kit to turn the piston clockwise. If the piston turns very difficultly or not at all, the piston is stuck and the caliper needs to be replaced.

How to Manually Retrieve Flash Codes on a 1996 Oldsmobile

Vehicles built during and after 1996 utilize the On Board Diagnostic II (OBD-II) system. This system provides a simple and easy way to retrieve flash codes from vehicles off all makes and models, including the 1996 Oldsmobile. A code reader capable of reading OBD-II codes is required for retrieving codes from the engine's diagnostic computer. Reading and retrieving the codes should only take a matter of minutes to perform.

Instructions

    1

    Open the door and enter the driver's side area of the vehicle. Connect the OBD-II code reader into the Data Link Connector port located underneath the steering column.

    2

    Insert the key into the ignition cylinder. Turn the key to the "On" position and wait for the code reader to start up.

    3

    Follow the instructions included with the OBD-II code reader to retrieve the flash codes for the vehicle. Use a pen and paper to write down the codes. Use the instruction booklet or your vehicle's service manual to decipher the codes. Turn the key to the "Off" position and unplug the code reader when finished.

Selasa, 20 November 2012

How do I Troubleshoot a Canyon Fan Switch?

How do I Troubleshoot a Canyon Fan Switch?

Heat, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems are an important part of a vehicle, not only for driver comfort, but also for safety. An operational HVAC helps keep the operator comfortable and more alert. HVAC systems are also a critical part of the vehicle's defrost and defog system, using heat and air conditioning as necessary to clear the vehicle's windshield and maintain visibility. The system is critical, and correct operation of the blower fan is required in most states to pass state inspection. The GMC Canyon blower fan switch, or control module, changes the resistance in the circuit to change the speed of the blower.

Instructions

    1

    Turn the ignition key on. Operate the blower motor switch in all positions. See if the blower fan works in any position at all. If the blower fan does not operate in any position, troubleshoot the blower motor and blower motor circuit.

    2

    Raise the hood of the vehicle. Locate the blower fan motor resistor block. It is under the hood, inside of the heater box close to the blower fan.

    3

    Unplug the connector from the blower fan. Use a small screwdriver to pry the connector apart gently, while pulling on the tab that is part of the connector to release the latch. There are four terminals on this connector.

    4

    Examine the blower fan connector for heat damage, melting or corrosion. If damage is found, replace the blower fan connector before continuing.

    5

    Connect the ground clamp of your test light to the terminal labeled "B+." This is the ground. With the fan switch in each "on" position, one of the terminals should light the test light when touched. If the test light does not light when touched to any terminal through the four settings of the fan switch, the problem is in the blower control circuit. It could be a short circuit, broken wire, faulty blower fan switch, or faulty HVAC control module. Otherwise, the problem is the blower fan resistor, and the resistor needs to be replaced.

    6

    Remove the positive battery terminal. Connect the negative lead of your digital multi-meter to a metal part of the vehicle. Set the meter to check for "ohms" (electrical resistance) or continuity. Test each of the terminals on the connector by touching each terminal with the positive lead of the multi-meter. The meter should read infinite ohms, or zero continuity. If it does not, there is a short circuit to ground present, and the wiring needs to be checked. If the circuits check with no continuity, the HVAC control module, or the fan switch, needs to be replaced.

Senin, 19 November 2012

How to Perform a Diagnostic on a 1996 Saturn

How to Perform a Diagnostic on a 1996 Saturn

Saturn vehicles manufactured in 1996 and later are subject to a standardized On-Board Diagnostic coding. A Saturn's computer runs a series of systems checks, and once a problem is detected, the computer issues a fault code. As a result, the service engine light becomes active on the Saturn's dashboard. The easiest way to read these codes involves a diagnostic scan tool. While some auto parts stores and repair garages might let you use theirs for free, many will not and will charge you a fee. Using a scanner and retrieving the codes yourself is not a complex process.

Instructions

    1

    Put your key into the ignition, yet leave the vehicle off.

    2

    Locate the diagnostic data link connection in your Saturn. It's usually either made of gray or black hard plastic, and it features 16 pin receptors. For Saturns manufactured in 1996, it is usually beneath and to the left, right or center of the steering column.

    3

    Insert you scanner's 16-pin plug into the data link connector.

    4

    Turn the Saturn's electrical system on and crank the engine.

    5

    Watch your scanner and wait for the fault codes to appear on the screen. This should take only a second or two. This part of the process will vary by the brand and part number of the scanner. Some will automatically switch themselves on when an incoming data stream is sensed. Others will not, and they will have to be turned on manually and will have to be told to retrieve the codes.

    6

    Pick up the scanner's manual. You should be able to find the meaning of the fault codes displayed on your scanner. If you cannot, your scanner may have picked up a manufacturer's supplemental fault code. Your vehicle's owner's manual will not have a list of these codes either. There are websites, however, that independently archive and list manufacturer specific fault codes.

How to Reset the Fuel Pump on a 1999 Ford Taurus

How to Reset the Fuel Pump on a 1999 Ford Taurus

The 1999 Ford Taurus is a mid-size vehicle, available in sedan and wagon form. Both LX and SE trim packages feature a 3.0-liter V6 engine, while the high-performance SHO sedans utilize a 3.4-liter, 235 hp V8 power plant. All model variations feature an inertia fuel pump cut-off switch, designed to disable the fuel pump in the event of an accident. The fuel pump cut-off switch may accidentally engage if your vehicle experiences a hard jolt while traveling down the road. If you are unable to start your vehicle, resetting the fuel pump cut-off switch may rectify the problem.

Instructions

    1

    Switch the vehicle's ignition to the "OFF" position. Check underneath the vehicle and inside the engine compartment for any apparent fuel leaks.

    2

    Locate and reset the fuel pump cut-off switch. If you own a sedan model, the fuel pump cut-off switch will be located inside the trunk, behind the carpeted liner, on the right-side inner fender and will feature a small, red button. Wagon owners will find the fuel pump cut-off switch behind the plastic service panel door, on the right side of the cargo area, near the rear hatch.

    3

    Switch the vehicle's ignition to the "ON" position to momentarily engage the fuel pump. After a few seconds, switch the ignition back to the "OFF" position and check the vehicle for any signs of fuel leakage. If you do not discover any fuel leakage from the vehicle, continue using the vehicle normally.

Sabtu, 17 November 2012

The Check Engine Light P0440 on a 1996 Sunfire

The Check Engine Light P0440 on a 1996 Sunfire

Believe it or not, your car's gas cap is actually a part of its emissions system. The Pontiac Sunfire and its Chevy Cavalier sister vehicle use the same kind of emissions systems that most GM vehicles do; this computerized system knows when something's gone awry with the evaporative emissions system. The condition is something you'll want to address as soon as possible; unlike most emissions systems, the EVAP actually does something that you'll appreciate every time you drive the car.

Instructions

    1

    Take the car to a qualified technician and make sure that the engine code displayed is the only one showing. GM OBD-II code P0440 indicates an EVAP (evaporative emissions) system failure. The EVAP system prevents the escape of fuel vapors from the vehicle, either to the outside of the vehicle or through the engine. Older vehicles had no such system, but the EVAP system on yours helps to boost gas mileage and decrease emissions.

    2

    Check the gas cap to ensure that it's sealing and working properly. The gas tank should remain under a constant vacuum, which seals the gas cap and keeps fuel vapors inside. The easiest way to test your gas cap is to fill the car up, drive it to about a half-tank and then remove the cap. You should hear an audible whoosh of air going into the tank; if you hear nothing, then the cap isn't sealing properly.

    3

    Take your car to a certified emissions inspection shop and have them test the car's charcoal canister. While no one would suggest unnecessarily paying a shop to do something you could do yourself, this, unfortunately, isn't something you can check yourself. In some cases, you can get away with simply unplugging the lines going to the canister and plugging all the lines off with large bolts. You can drive the car to see if the light goes out, but obviously you wouldn't leave it in such a condition, as it would be illegal.

    4

    Disconnect the battery to reset the engine codes, reconnect it and drive the car. If you've already dealt with the gas cap and the charcoal canister, then you've got an EVAP purge valve problem; it's the only thing left in your vehicle's EVAP system that can go wrong. Of course, deactivating the charcoal canister will probably eliminate that problem, too. If you EVAP system problems still don't go away, go to your local GM dealer and purchase a new vented gas cap. That will allow air into the tank, but not back out.

Common Problems With a 1996 Acura RL

The 1996 Acura RL has a 3.5-liter, 210-horsepower V6 engine that gives the RL the zip that Acura car buyers are looking for. Unfortunately, there's a lot more to this vehicle than just the engine. Specific portions of the 1996 Acura RL have been recalled. Other problems that are typical of this make and model may also exist.

Transmission Recall

    The transmission recall for the 1996 Acura RL was due to a bolt between the transmission case and the differential coming loose during operation, causing the differential to be separated from the transmission case. Parking the car would no longer lock the tires, and the car could roll at will if on a slope. A more common problem is the loss of power to the tires, keeping the vehicle from moving.

Front Suspension Recall

    In some of the 1996 Acura RL models, ball joints were used on the lower control arm of the suspension. Ball joints can prematurely wear out, causing steering control issues, as well as sudden power loss. The combination of the fast deceleration and the loss of steering control is the main concern in this case.

Dash Vibration

    Some complaints of excessive dash vibration when the vehicle is in gear have been reported. When the car is shifted back into neutral, the vibration ceases. The vibration also diminishes as the vehicle accelerates closer to highway speeds. The most common causes of this problem are engine mounts loosening, as well as holes in the vacuum hose for the air intake; however, other causes may also be the culprit.

How to Check an Auto Battery for Load

How to Check an Auto Battery for Load

An automotive battery is the backbone of the automotive electrical system. A properly functioning battery must be installed in the automobile for an automobile's electrical system to work properly. One way to determine if a battery is functioning properly is to conduct a load test. A load tester draws a large electrical current from the battery for a short period. If the battery voltage after the load test is at or above a certain level, the battery is considered to be functioning properly.

Instructions

    1

    Place the positive (red) multimeter probe on the positive battery terminal. Place the negative (black) multimeter probe on the negative battery terminal. Turn the measurement scale to "Volts DC."

    2

    Check the multimeter display. If the multimeter reading displays more than 12.4 volts, remove the multimeter probes and turn off the multimeter.

    3

    Attach the red lead from the battery load tester to the positive battery terminal. Attach the black lead from the battery load tester to the negative battery terminal.

    4

    Load the battery by turning the load increase control until the ammeter on the load tester reads three times the amp-hour rating or one half the cold-cranking ampere rating. The battery cold-cranking ampere rating or the amp-hour rating appears on a sticker at the top of the battery.

    5

    Run the test for 15 seconds, and then turn off the load tester.

    6

    Place the positive (red) multimeter probe on the positive battery terminal. Place the negative (black) multimeter probe on the negative battery terminal. Turn on the multimeter, and verify the voltage. A battery in proper working order will show a reading of at least 9.6 volts.

Jumat, 16 November 2012

My KIA Sorento Won't Start

My KIA Sorento Won't Start

The Sorento is manufactured and sold by Kia Motors America. The Sorento is a mid-size Sport Utility Vehicle that provides lots of room for passengers and cargo. Just as with any vehicle, there are times when the Kia Sorento may have trouble starting and will require troubleshooting. Before calling in a professional mechanic or having your Sorento towed to a garage or dealership, there are a few basic things that you can check when your Sorento won't start.

Instructions

    1

    Attempt to turn the key in the ignition of your Kia Sorento. If the key does not turn at all, check to be sure that the steering column is locked. If it is not, turn the steering wheel until your hear a click indicating that it is locked. Try to turn the key again. If the steering column is not locked, you will be unable to turn the key and start your Sorento.

    2

    Check to be sure that there is enough fuel in the vehicle. If the fuel level is low or empty, the engine will not start. Add one gallon of gas to the tank to be sure that there is enough fuel and try to start the engine.

    3

    Attempt to start the engine and listen for any sounds that may indicate a problem. If you do not hear any sounds when attempting to start the engine, the ignition switch may be faulty. Clicking sounds indicate a problem with the starter of your Sorento. If the engine starts but stops shortly after, the problem may be in the fuel system.

    4

    Adjust the key so that it is in the "Accessories" position and turn on the headlights or interior lights. Check to see if the lights come on. If they do not you may have a problem with your Sorento's battery. The battery may need to be charged, replaced, or jump-started.

    5

    Pull the level to pop the hood. Open the hood and locate the oil, transmission fluid and coolant. Check the fluid levels in each. If the fluid levels are not between the minimum and maximum marks, add the appropriate amount and type of fluid. If fluids are not filled correctly, problems with the engine and starting your Sorento can occur.

    6

    Contact a professional mechanic for further diagnostic testing if your Kia Sorento still won't start. Tow or have your Sorento towed to a local auto mechanic garage or dealership.

Diagnostics Tools for Cars

Diagnostics Tools for Cars

With the addition of on board computers, autos today are much more sophisticated than they were only 15 to 20 years ago. While the computer may make diagnosing a problem easier, fixing the problem can often be difficult because of the way the newer vehicles are designed and assembled. However a few basic diagnostic tools can usually help locate and isolate a specific problem with your car so that proper repairs can be made.

Auto Diagnostic Computer

    Cars built after 1995 have an on board diagnostic (OBD) computer that constantly monitor the vehicle and notify the driver of any detected problems by turning on the check engine light. An OBD computer is a diagnostic tool designed to plug into the computer port in the car's fuse box. When plugged in, the OBD tool downloads codes from the computer that help diagnose the problem. Small hand held models can be purchased for your vehicle while auto repair shops may have more sophisticated types.

Timing Light

    An auto timing tool checks the timing of the engine. If spark plugs are not firing properly, the car would not run properly. A timing light fires a strobe light that will detect the timing marks on the flywheel or harmonic balancer. This timed strobe determines if the plugs are firing correctly and lets you know when the timing is off so adjustments or repairs can be made.

Air Pressure Gauge

    When the car is driving rough and/or there are problems with the vehicle drifting from a straight line while in motion, low tire pressure can be the culprit. An air pressure gauge is attached to the tire stem to check the pressure and verify the tires have the recommended air pressure. Check the owners manual or the markings on the tires to determine if your tires have the proper pressure and add or reduce the pressure as needed.

Emmission System Testing Scanner

    Many states require emissions tests on the vehicle before the car can be properly licensed for traveling on public roads. Emission scanners are tools designed to diagnose the amount of emissions coming from the muffler. A car with a faulty emission control system can cause the vehicle to run rough in addition to the extra pollution it will emit into the atmosphere. Some smaller hand-held OBD scanners also have an emissions testing scanner.

Engine Scopes

    An engine scope, or a "digital storage oscilloscope," is a diagnostic tool designed to capture and display electronic signals as waveforms on a screen. These waveforms can help diagnose a problem with a sensor or the onboard computer system. This allows you to pinpoint a specific problem without the testing of individual components and circuits that otherwise might be necessary to isolate a problem.

Kamis, 15 November 2012

How to Check the Engine of a 2002 Dodge Ram

There are ways to troubleshoot a 2002 Dodge Ram engine by sight and smell, but that's more time-consuming than needs be. An On-Board Diagnostics scanner will lead you to an engine problem a lot quicker than blind trial and error. The Ram's OBD-II system runs a series of tests every time the engine is on. If a malfunction occurs a few times, it is noted and logged by the system as a "pending" problem. If it occurs enough time, it becomes a "trouble" code. You can retrieve these codes.

Instructions

    1

    Plug your scanner's cable into the diagnostic port. It will be directly beneath the steering column on the underside of the dashboard.

    2

    Turn the electrical system on. Your scanner my require you to also crank the engine. Also, if your scanner did not self-activate and retrieve codes, then you will also need to switch it on and enter a "Scan" or "read" command.

    3

    Write down the OBD-II codes the scanner retrieved. Your scanner will distinguish between pending codes and the trouble codes. Take the trouble codes more seriously, since they have occurred on a more frequent basis. Then, look up the brief code descriptions in your scanner's manual. You can usually find these definitions towards the back of the manual in an appendix. Also, the manual may only have the the generic descriptions that are universal to all OBD-II compliant vehicles. Dodge and Chrysler-related vehicles have their own special supplemental codes. You will likely have to look those up on the iInternet (see Resource).

Rabu, 14 November 2012

How to Troubleshoot a Chevy Trailblazer

Finding out what is causing problems with your Chevrolet Trailblazer is an easy procedure if you have the proper diagnostic equipment. Your Trailblazer's electronics system includes an onboard diagnostic computer known as OBD2, which will output unique error codes for failing electrical and mechanical components on your Trailblazer. You can often have a code scan performed for free by your Chevy dealership or at an auto parts store. You can also purchase your own OBD2 code scanner so that you can perform a diagnosis whenever you like.

Instructions

    1

    Determine the location of the OBD2 diagnostic port in your Trailblazer by referencing the owner's manual or by feeling around the area below the steering wheel, near the top of the driver's side foot well. The diagnostic port will be approximately 2 inches wide.

    2

    Plug the diagnostic code scanner into the diagnostic port.

    3

    Turn your Trailblazer's ignition to the accessories position, if your engine will not start, or turn it on all the way if your engine will start, so that the electronics are turned on and the engine is idling if possible.

    4

    Allow the code scanning tool to perform a code scan and take note of any error codes that are displayed on the code scanning tool.

    5

    Bring your error codes to a Chevy dealership, auto parts store, mechanic, or perform a web search, to find out what the error codes represent. By finding out what specific components are broken, you can save time diagnosing the issues and begin the repair process sooner.

Selasa, 13 November 2012

Signs & Symptoms of a Burnt Clutch

Signs & Symptoms of a Burnt Clutch

Many drivers love manual transmissions for the control they give over the vehicle's drivetrain. Unlike an automatic transmission, in which a computer intervenes to decide when to shift gears, a manual transmission lets the driver decide when, how quickly and how smoothly to disengage the engine from the drivetrain. This is what the clutch does. The clutch absorbs a lot of wear and can fail in a number of ways, including burning out.

What is a Burnt Clutch?

    When you step on the clutch pedal, it lifts then separates the spinning clutch disk and flywheel. You can then shift gears before releasing the clutch to reengage the drivetrain. When you release the clutch pedal, the moving clutch disk makes contact with the pressure plate of the flywheel, causing significant friction and heat. If you "ride" the clutch, stepping too frequently on the pedal and repeatedly disengaging and reengaging the drivetrain, the friction can create enough heat to actually burn the clutch facings. This can ruin both the disk and the flywheel assembly.

Smelling a Burnt Clutch

    The most telling sign of a burnt clutch is the smell it gives off. If the clutch facings start to burn, the smell will resemble that of burnt toast. This could cause the whole clutch to fail, at which point your car would stop being able to accelerate or shift gears.

Feeling a Burnt Clutch

    A more likely sign of a burnt clutch that hasn't yet destroyed the whole assembly is clutch slippage, where the disk partially disengages from the flywheel. In this case, the engine RPMs will rise quickly without a change in speed, and even more heat will be generated.

Possible Misdiagnoses

    Diagnosing a burnt clutch, without smelling it, can be difficult. Oil leaking into the clutch casing will also cause clutch slippage, as will a bad flywheel, a misaligned clutch bearing, a blocked cylinder port, or problems with the cables and pistons connecting the pedal to the clutch. The only way to be entirely sure is to bring the car to a mechanic who can examine the facings of the clutch disk.

Honda Accord Gas Gauge Problems

Honda Accord's gas gauge works by receiving data from a fuel sending unit located at the bottom of the gas tank. The gauge itself is attached to the cluster of wires that connects to the battery and is located behind the dashboard. A problem with any of the mechanical parts in this chain results in a malfunctioning gauge.

Wiring Problems

    Located behind the dashboard, the Accord's gas gauge wiring is susceptible to disconnecting or becoming damaged. The wiring can be checked for problems by taking the dashboard apart and visually inspecting the gas gauge wiring. If damaged, the wires need to be soldered or replaced.

Fuel Sending Unit

    Part of the fuel sending unit is a stainless steel finger which slides along a copper rod to determine the amount of gas in the car. Over time, the stainless steel finger becomes worn out and can cause inaccurate readings. Replacing the fuel sending unit will fix the problem. This is a common problem in sixth generation Honda Accord models.

Gas Tank Topping

    Honda Accord's fuel gauge accuracy is dependent on the proper use of the gas since it is based on the readings from the fuel sending unit. Constantly filling the gas to the very top of the gas tank, or topping off, causes the gas gauge to give inaccurate information.

How to Reset the Fuel Pump in a 1996 Jeep Cherokee

How to Reset the Fuel Pump in a 1996 Jeep Cherokee

If your Jeep Cherokee has stopped running or will not start and you feel that the fuel pump has failed, then there are ways of checking and resetting the pump before attempting a tricky replacement. Do not be fooled into checking for a fuel cut off reset switch, as the 1996 Jeep Cherokee does not have one. To reset the fuel pump is a manual process done through the various power phases listed in the following steps.

Instructions

    1

    Remove the fuel cap and listen closely for the fuel pump to come on as a someone turns on the ignition key. The pump runs for only 2 seconds at a time when the engine is not running.

    2

    Turn on the key for 3 seconds and off for 5 seconds and on again a couple of times. If the pump cannot be heard, then replace the cap.

    3

    Shut off your Jeep. Open the bonnet and check the fuse to the fuel pump. The Fuse box is located in the engine bay.

    4

    Open the fuse box and read the list on the inside cover. This will help you locate the fuel pump fuse.

    5

    Pull the fuse out and look at the silver wire inside. If there is a melted or broken wire then find a new fuse that has the same rating as the one you removed. Verify this against the fuse box cover or the fuse itself.

    6

    Put the new fuse in and click it into place.

    7

    Remove the relay and using the Circuit Tester, test the terminals that it was plugged into for power with the key off. There should be one terminal with power. If not, there is a bad wire under the fuse block to the battery; it should have constant power at one terminal. If there is power then replace the relay and the unit should work.

My Car Won't Shift

My Car Won't Shift

Whether you drive an automatic or a manual, the ability to shift your car is necessary. It may be tempting to diagnose the shifter issue on your own, but if the problem is not a low level of transmission fluid, it will probably take professional diagnostic equipment and skill to fix. If refilling a low transmission fluid doesn't fix the problem, follow up with a local auto repair shop for assistance that may end up saving you money in the long run.

Instructions

Automatic

    1

    Read your car's owner's manual to determine the exact transmission fluid your car runs on. If you replace it with a cheaper alternative, it may damage your transmission.

    2

    Open the hood of your car. Start your car and leave it in park or neutral. Allow the engine to run.

    3

    Find the dipstick. The dipstick will show you the level of transmission fluid. If your fluid is low, it will affect your ability to shift. Distinguish the transmission dipstick from the engine oil dipstick. The transmission dipstick may say "ATF" on the handle, and is located at the back of the engine.

    4

    Pull out the ATF dipstick and wipe it off completely with a rag. Place it back into the slot in the engine it came out of, and pull it back out.

    5

    Examine the end of the dipstick, where you can see both cold and warm readings. The second line on the dipstick will tell you whether the fluid is full. If the marking does not go to the second line, you will need to add automatic transmission fluid (ATF).

    6

    Add ATF directly into the hole from where you removed the dipstick. Place a funnel into the hole, and pour in small amounts at a time. If you add too much, you can ruin the transmission. Continually re-dip and check the dipstick as you pour in the ATF. Stop when the marking reaches the second line.

    7

    Replace the dipstick into its appropriate slot. Attempt to shift and drive your car, and note if there is any change.

    8

    Look around the garage or curb where you typically park your car for oil drippings. Low ATF levels often indicate a leak in your car. You will have to fix the leak at its source, rather than simply replace the ATF.

    9

    Get a diagnostic test on your car at a professional shop if the problem persists. It may require special equipment to properly diagnose a broken transmission.

Senin, 12 November 2012

How to Diagnose a Power Steering Pump Failure

How to Diagnose a Power Steering Pump Failure

The power steering pump makes it easy to maneuver your car with little effort. A serpentine belt connects the pump to the crankshaft, moving hydraulic fluid through a closed system. When a car gets hard to steer, or when strange growls and whines emanate from under the hood, it might be time to replace the power steering pump. Other problems, such as low fluid or maladjusted belts, can also masquerade as a bad pump. An inspection or a pressure test can be used to diagnose a bad power steering pump.

Instructions

Inspect your Power Steering Pump

    1

    Listen for a squealing noise with the hood open and the engine running. Popular Mechanics likens this noise to a "moose in heat." It might sound similar to the whine your pump can make when cranking the steering wheel all the way to one side, but this squealing can happen with the steering wheel in any position. Check the tension on the serpentine belt to make sure you aren't hearing the belt squealing instead.

    2

    Check the fluid level in the power steering pump. If the fluid is low, there is likely a leak somewhere. Look underneath the car. The red, translucent color of power steering fluid makes it easy to distinguish from dark grease or the golden tinge of engine oil. Low fluid can cause poor pump performance and can also burn out the pump.

    3

    Inspect the power steering lines for leaks, cracks or clogs. If these are faulty, they will keep the pump from receiving enough fluid. Similar to a power steering pump failure, steering might be difficult and your pump might be groaning or whining.

Pressure Test your Power Steering Pump

    4

    Test the fluid pressure on your power steering pump to confirm its failure. Turn off the engine, and unhook the pressure line from the power steering pump. Insert the pressure gauge in between the pressure line and the pump, with the gauge side facing the pump.

    5

    Turn on the engine. Crank the steering wheel all the way in one direction. Repeat this three times to remove any air from the lines that will cause false readings on the test.

    6

    Check the pressure at 1,000 rpm. Rev the engine to 3,000 rpm, and check the pressure again. Subtract the pressure difference, and compare it with the suggested pressure difference of your make and model vehicle.

    7

    Turn the steering wheel one direction until it stops. Check the power steering pump pressure. Evaluate this amount against the suggested pressure for your vehicle.

How to Troubleshoot a Throttle Position Sensor for a 1994 Honda Accord LX

The throttle position sensor on a 1994 Honda Accord LX has two primary functions: to signal the amount of throttle opening and the speed at which it is opening. This information, along with various other sensor information, is used by the computer to make adjustments to the ignition timing and the fuel injector timing. The sensor is essentially a variable resister (potentiometer) with an operating range between 0.2 and 5 volts. The throttle position sensor is mounted on the throttle body, on the same shaft but on the opposite side of the throttle linkage. It has a round, three-wire plug.

Instructions

    1

    Examine the electrical plug on the throttle position sensor. You will see three wires in a horizontal line. Reading from left to right, the first wire -- green with blue stripe -- is the computer ground, the second wire -- red with a black stripe -- is the throttle position sensor signal and the last wire to the right -- yellow with a blue stripe -- is the computer-supplied 5-volt input wire.

    2

    Connect the voltmeter black lead to a good ground on the intake manifold. Use the red lead as a probe. It has a sharp point on the tip to pierce the insulation on a wire so the probe makes contact with the wire beneath. Pierce the middle sensor signal wire with the red voltmeter probe.

    3

    Turn the ignition key on without starting the engine. The voltmeter will display between 0.3 to 0.5 volts if the sensor is good.

    4

    Open the throttle plate slowly with the throttle linkage. The voltage will be around 0.5 volts and rise to 4.7 volts at full open throttle. During the throttle movement, watch for any voltage drop-outs. This is a term for a sudden drop or lack of voltage at one point in the throttle position sensor swing. Many times, the throttle position sensor will wear out in the area of cruise since that is the most heavily used. The voltage will be going up steadily, then suddenly drop to zero and come back as soon as the sensor moves away from this spot. Failing to meet any of the above criteria justifies replacement.

    5

    Move the red voltmeter lead to the far-right and probe the yellow with a blue stripe wire. If the displayed voltage is less than 5 volts, the computer is bad. If the voltage is good, the sensor is bad.

How to Troubleshoot a Carburetor Backfire

How to Troubleshoot a Carburetor Backfire

Carburetor backfire can occur from time to time, and can be annoying. Generally a loud noise, which sounds like an explosion, is expelled from the carburetor, while the engine is idle or after the car has just been shut off. This can be caused by various malfunctions such as improperly adjusted carburetors. The average driver can diagnose the problem by using a few simple troubleshooting techniques.

Instructions

    1

    Allow the engine to cool down before shutting it off. Let the car idle for at least 15 to 30 seconds before turning it off.

    2

    Change the fuel that you use in your vehicle to a non-alcohol type. When fuel that contains alcohol is used in a vehicle, it causes the engine to run hotter, which can cause backfire.

    3

    Adjust the carburetor to reduce backfire. Sometimes the carburetor needs slight adjustments for the best performance. Have a professional make the adjustment for you.

    4

    Check the anti-after-fire solenoid if you have one installed. Get a professional to check if it is installed and working correctly, and let him correct the issue if necessary.

Sabtu, 10 November 2012

PT Crusier Steering Problems

PT Cruiser steering problems have been the subject of one safety recall and a few minor technical service bulletins (TSBs) since the model was first introduced in 2000. The safety recall is for a deadly but rare problem. As for the TSBs, one problem accounts for the majority of steering complaints.

Power Steering Pump Hose

    According to Chrysler PT Cruiser safety recall 04V268000, the high pressure hose coming out of the power steering pump on 2.4L non-turbocharged Cruisers can rupture, causing power steering fluid to spray over the engine and possibly ignite. This serious safety recall was issued in September 2004 and affects models from 2000 to 2005.

Power Steering Reservoir Filter

    A fine mesh filter is built into the PT Cruiser power steering reservoir, and it is prone to clogging. The filter is not removable, meaning the entire reservoir must be replaced at a cost of close to $200. While annoying and frustrating, the reservoir issue does not create the danger a ruptured power steering pump hose does.

Symptoms

    Symptoms of PT power steering issues are stiff steering, inconsistent steering through the arc of a turn, whining noises that change pitch according to the angle of steering, and power steering drip spots under the car.

How to Troubleshoot a 1983 Oldsmobile

How to Troubleshoot a 1983 Oldsmobile

Founded in 1897 by Ransom E. Olds, the Oldsmobile line of cars was produced and sold by General Motors for more than 100 years. The Oldsmobile brand was discontinued by General Motors in 2004. Troubleshooting your 1983 Oldsmobile is a step-by-step process to try and identify any problems the car may be experiencing.

Instructions

    1

    Turn the ignition to the off position and remove the key from the ignition, if your 1983 Oldsmobile does not start. Lift the engine hood and inspect the battery cables where they connect to the battery and to the starter motor. Remove the cables and clean the connections using a wire brush. Corrosion can build up on these connections, reducing the effectiveness of the connection from the battery to the rest of starting system.

    2

    Remove and replace the fuel and air filters in your 1983 Oldsmobile if you notice the engine is sluggish or hesitates when you press on the gas pedal. Internal combustion engines require the correct mix of air and fuel for them to run correctly. If this mixture is not optimum, the engine may not run as smoothly or hesitate when you try to accelerate.

    3

    Remove the spark plug wires and the spark plugs from the 1983 Oldsmobile engine if the engine is idling rough or takes many attempts before starting . Observe the end of the spark plug. If the bottom of the spark plug is black with carbon, it should be replaced. It is also an indication that the fuel mixture may be too rich. If your 1983 Oldsmobile has a carburetor, there is small screw on the front of it under the air filter. Turning this screw adjusts the fuel mixture. If your car has fuel injection, you may need the services of a mechanic to adjust the electronic engine control settings on the car.

Jumat, 09 November 2012

Chrysler Code 168.4

Chrysler Code 168.4

Chrysler, an American auto manufacturer, was founded in 1925. Despite its rich tradition, Chrysler's vehicles are not exempt from mechanical problems. You can safeguard against potential issues by utilizing diagnostic trouble codes.

Accessing

    In order to obtain a diagnostic trouble code, you need to connect a car code reader to the diagnostic link connector (DLC) on the steering column. Once you turn on your vehicle's ignition, the car code reader will list all detected problems.

Code P1684

    For Chrysler vehicles, a code P1684 represents a battery disconnected within last 50 starts. Although the code signifies a battery-related issue, diagnostic codes do not tell you how to proceed with repairs. It is the job of a trained professional to further diagnose and repair the problem.

Solution

    The most common reason for this detected trouble code is a new -- or recently reinstalled -- battery. If you have not replaced your Chrysler's battery, code 1684 may indicate that your battery is running low on power. In this case, proceed by replacing the vehicle's battery.

Kamis, 08 November 2012

The Symptoms of a Bad Catalytic Converter on a 1999 Silverado

While Chevrolet applied the name to all of its medium-duty pickups in 1998, the Silverado trim package dates all the way back to 1975. A lot has changed since then, including the addition of emissions equipment like catalytic converters and the computer systems that help to diagnose them.

Emissions

    A catalytic converter is essentially a furnace used to superheat exhaust contaminants like unburned fuel (hydrocarbon, or HC), carbon monoxide (CO) and oxides of nitrogen (NOx) into more benign forms. You can expect a drastic increase in these emissions when the converter goes out. You can't detect CO and NOx without an emissions tester, like those used at government compliance shops, but you may detect the telltale odor of raw fuel in your exhaust. You may also see a puff of gray or black smoke issue from the tailpipe, but this isn't particularly likely unless you've got other problems.

Diagnostic Codes

    A bad catalytic converter pretty much defines the term "emissions failure", so any converter failure will immediately trigger a trouble code and a check engine light. Amongst other things. But there isn't just one code that tells you that the converter's working and you should get some notice before it goes out completely. Your truck's onboard diagnostics system is programmed with at least ten different codes specifying catalytic converter failure of some kind. They range from P0420 to P0434 and you'll definitely see at least one of them ,if the converter goes out.

Into the Matrix

    The converter likely won't cause any performance problems in and of itself, unless it breaks internally. Following an extreme overheating event, the ceramic matrix in the converter can shatter and collapse, blocking exhaust flow and reducing engine horsepower. If you experience a noticeable loss of engine horsepower alongside a catalytic converter code, it needs to be addressed ASAP. Exhaust gases carry a significant amount of heat out of your engine; if they get trapped in the cylinders, they can cause both localized and generalized overheating,resulting in severe engine damage caused by detonation and pre-ignition.

Limp-Home Mode

    Manufacturers are extremely sensitive when it comes to excess emissions output. And, to appease the people who can slap them with very big fines, automakers prefer to program their computers to keep you from driving around while spewing deadly contaminants. Limp-home mode is a multi-part event, triggered by a failure in emissions components. In the Silverado's case, limp-home mode causes your transmission to hang in second gear and limits your rpm, so you don't blow the motor to bits.

Off-Road-Only Modification

    Racers, running their vehicles strictly off-road, will often install a "MIL eliminator" in the second oxygen sensor line to emulate a properly functioning converter. A MIL eliminator costs about $20 to $40, and a new converter between $300 to $800, installed. Feel free to do the math. Provided, of course, that you're not using your "work" truck to -- say -- earn a living, and that you only want to disable limp-home mode so that you can race your Silverado on a government-sanctioned track. Remember, your Silverado's emission system is in place for a reason and many law enforcement agencies around the country will do more than frown on the use of an MIL eliminator on public roads.

Troubleshooting a P0401 Trouble Code on a 2001 F-150 Ford Pickup

Troubleshooting a P0401 Trouble Code on a 2001 F-150 Ford Pickup

Diagnostic trouble code P0401, in your 2001 Ford F-150 pickup truck, is related to the Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) system. This code indicates that the flow rate of recirculated exhaust gases is below the normal operating range. Since this code is only related to the EGR system you can pinpoint the cause by testing the function of the parts in that system. The average do-it-yourself home mechanic can complete these tests in a couple of hours using common diagnostic tools.

Instructions

    1

    Visually inspect the vacuum lines in the EGR system for cracks and splits. The 2001 Ford F-150 has a vacuum line connecting the EGR valve to the EGR valve solenoid, and a vacuum line connecting the solenoid to the intake manifold. Replace any split or cracked vacuum lines.

    2

    Start the engine. Connect a vacuum line to the EGR control solenoid and a vacuum gauge. Rev the engine above 2,000 rpm and watch the gauge. It should momentarily jump and then settle to normal when the engine is revved. This indicates the control circuit is functioning. If the vacuum gauge reading doesn't change replace the control solenoid.

    3

    Apply five to six in-HG vacuum using a hand held vacuum pump to the EGR valve. The engine should stumble as the EGR valve opens. Vacuum should hold until it is intentionally released. If vacuum leaks down replace the EGR valve. If the engine did not stumble when vacuum was applied to the EGR valve clean the ports in the intake manifold.

    4

    Remove the EGR valve from the intake manifold using a 13mm wrench to remove the two bolts that attach it to the intake manifold. Use an adjustable wrench to remove the large nut that attaches it to the EGR pipe and lay the EGR valve aside..

    5

    Clean the ports located behind the EGR valve in the intake manifold with a stiff wire and a small wire brush. One of the most common causes of code P0401 is a clogged passage in the manifold. Make sure the passages are not clogged with carbon build-up and reinstall the EGR valve.

    6

    Clear the codes from the computer memory and test drive the truck to verify that cleaning the ports solved the problem. For this system two 15 minute test drives consisting of both highway and in-town speeds are required for the computer to self test the system.

    7

    If all other checks show normal, and the EGR passages are clean, replace the Delta Pressure Feedback Exhaust (DPFE) sensor, located on the driver side of the intake manifold, and the EGR sample tube the sensor is connected to. This sensor measures EGR flow.

Rabu, 07 November 2012

Troubleshooting a KIA Fuel Pump

Troubleshooting a KIA Fuel Pump

If your Kia sedan or coupe is acting up when you try to start the engine, or balking when you attempt to engage the accelerator, you may have a problem with your Kia's fuel pump. You can troubleshoot the fuel pump on your Kia in your own driveway and save the hassle and cost of taking it to a mechanic. You will need an assistant, a set of screwdrivers and a volt gauge. You can find a volt gauge at your local auto parts store. This job will take less than an hour and does not require extensive car knowledge.

Instructions

    1

    Release the gas filler door and detach the fuel cap. Ask your assistant to turn the ignition key on and off in five second increments while you listen. You should hear the fuel pump humming; it will turn on for two seconds at a time, since the Kia's computer will not detect the engine turning over. If you cannot hear a humming sound, then there is most likely a problem with the relay, vehicle computer, fuel pump or the fuel pump's wiring.

    2

    Turn off the Kia's ignition and pop the hood. Look for the valve located on the fuel rail above the injectors. While your assistant turns the ignition on and off, push in on the valve. If your Kia's fuel pump is operating properly, gas should flow through the valve. If you do see gas flowing through the valve, close it quickly using a screwdriver. If gas does flow through the valve, there is pressure in the gas lines and the fuel pump is intact. If no gas flows through the valve, however, move on to the next step.

    3

    Examine the gas pump's fuse. You can find it on the driver's side fender well, inside the fuse relay box. Replace the fuse if it is blown. Turn the ignition key. If your Kia will not start, move on to the next step.

    4

    Remove the gas pump relay. Use a volt gauge to examine the fuse block's terminals, checking for electrical power. When the ignition is in the "Off" position, there should be one terminal that has power. If you cannot detect any power, there is a problem between the relay and the Kia's battery. If you are able to detect power, ask your assistant to turn the ignition key as you examine the rest of the terminals. You should be able to detect power flowing to a second terminal. If you do not detect any power, there is a problem either with the Kia's computer or the exchange between the computer and the relay. If you detect power in a second terminal, the fuel pump itself if damaged.

    5

    See if you can detect power in the terminals of the fuse blocks. If you can, the fuel pump will need to be replaced. If you were unable to detect power in the terminals, the computer will need testing as well as the wire running from the computer to the gas pump. Replacing the gas pump on a Kia is a simple procedure because you will not need to take out the gas tank. A cover plate under the carpet in the Kia's trunk conceals the gas pump. Simply lift up the carpet and cover plate and remove the gas pump below.

Selasa, 06 November 2012

What Are the Causes of a High Idle on 1988 Fiero GT 2.8L?

What Are the Causes of a High Idle on 1988 Fiero GT 2.8L?

High idle in a 1988 Pontiac Fiero GT 2.8L engine occurs when the vehicle is stopped and the engine is running. The symptoms of idle problems in the Fiero are engine backfire, stalling at stops and the engine misses out during operation. Only a few things causes the 2.8L engine to idle high.

AIS Motor Problems

    The automatic idle speed motor (AIS) controls the air flow in the 1988 Pontiac Fiero GT 2.8L engine when the automobile is at a stop. The AIS motor allows a small amount of air into the injector system so the engine idles properly when the accelerator is not being pressed. Corrosion and debris does build up in the AIS motor over time and the device has a tendency of seizing causing the Fiero to idle high. The motor can be removed, cleaned and lubricated unless too much corrosion has built up in the device.

Vacumm Leak

    A vacuum leak is the most prominent cause of a 1988 Pontiac Fiero GT 2.8L engine to idle high. The hoses and air lines in the Fiero engine must be tight and without any damage; this damage may allow the air flow to leak out instead of into the 2.8L engine. The air lines which lead to the manifold and throttle of the Fiero engine are the most common lines which create a vacuum leak. The lines can be removed and inspected for damage, tears or leaks by visual inspection, but the best way to investigate a vacuum leak is to take the Pontiac into the dealership and have the vacuum leak narrowed down by a professional.

Intake Manifold Gasket

    A damaged intake manifold gasket can cause the 1988 Pontiac Fiero GT 2.8L engine to idle high. Even though this problem is rare, a leaking intake manifold gasket allows air to be released into the engine compartment and prevents a continuous flow of air into the manifold. This high idle cause is difficult to repair for a novice and the gasket should not be replaced by someone who does not have the proper knowledge of the Pontiac Fiero GT 2.8L engine. Once the intake manifold gasket is damaged, the Fiero will begin to stall, cough or hesitate during acceleration.

Transmission Jolts When Shifting From First to Second

Transmission Jolts When Shifting From First to Second

Jolting and jerking between gears is often one of the first indications you will notice when your vehicle begins to have transmission problems. There are a number of different issues that may cause the transmission to jerk. It is important to make sure you get a proper diagnosis of your transmission's problems from a certified mechanic to ensure the problem gets fixed before lasting or permanent damage can occur or you are left without transportation.

Low Transmission Fluid

    One of the most common causes of transmission problems is low transmission fluid. Transmission fluid provides the lubrication between the gears of your transmission as it shifts. If there is not enough transmission fluid, the vehicle may clunk into gear as it shifts without the protection of lubricating fluid. If a vehicle goes without sufficient transmission fluid for a long period of time, it may permanently damage the transmission.

Wrong Transmission Fluid

    Transmission fluids come in different thicknesses and consistencies. Using the wrong transmission fluid can leave your transmission without enough lubrication, which can cause rough shifting and jolting. If you believe the wrong type of transmission fluid has been used, you should have your mechanic flush the transmission and put new fluid in.

Sensors

    Electronic sensors control when and how your automatic transmission shifts. If the sensors are not reading information about the vehicle's speed and acceleration correctly, the vehicle may shift poorly, shift late, clunk into gear or not shift at all.

Wear and Time

    The older your vehicle is and the more miles it has traveled, the more likely it is that your transmission will develop problems. Jolting between gears can be the first sign that your transmission gears and bushings are starting to wear out, causing your vehicle to not shift as effectively and smoothly as it once did. In this case, the transmission will likely have to be rebuilt or replaced.