Senin, 31 Desember 2012

Signs a Double Cardan Drive Shaft Is Bad

Double cardan joints are a type of universal joint often used in applications calling for more articulation and torque-transfer capability than a standard Rzeppa joint can provide. While far tougher than most other types of CV joint, the DCJ will still wear out and fail when subjected to enough stress and wear.

Clunking

    Clunking under acceleration or sudden braking is often the first sign of DCJ wear, and can presage an immediate and catastrophic failure if left unremedied. This clunking comes from excess bearing play between the DCJ's individual U-joints and its intermediate shaft, or inside the U-joint caps themselves. Clunking is dangerous because the clearances it implies allow the driveshaft to build up momentum before engaging the wheel, which hammers the bearings to slurry.

Binding

    Binding may happen before audible noise in the DCJ, but it often occurs as a result of excess bearing clearance in the DCJ's U-joints. Binding generally happens under extreme suspension articulation, and manifests as a very expensive-sound popping noise. When the front DCJ on a 4WD truck binds, it might send a noticeable shimmy up the steering wheel and jerk it slightly to one side or the other. Enough binding will eventually break the DCJ's U-joints or intermediate shaft, and even mild binding can crack it enough to cause failure later.

Vibration

    Vibration in a DCJ is fairly rare, since one side of the joint usually mounts to a solid base, but it is a sign of impending failure. Vibration will typically occur only on extremely lifted or lowered trucks where the DCJ never fully straightens out under cruise conditions. While few CV joints ever operate in a fully "straight" position under cruise, sustained angles will allow the intermediate shaft to oscillate in the space provided by the U-joint's bearing clearances. As such, vibration almost always heralds severe bearing wear, and will probably result in binding if left unattended. Bear in mind, though, that DCJs will always vibrate a little more than other types of CV joint, so don't replace the joint unless you detect a noticeable increase in vibration.

Checking the DCJ

    The simplest way to check a DCJ is to crawl under the truck, grasp the driveshaft in both hands and try to twist or move it. Since most DCJ failures are a result of bearing wear, any excess movement in the unit will tell you that something's wrong. Allowable clearances vary, but excess wear is probable if you can rotate the shaft enough to note an audible tap when it stops. This mild tap will eventually hammer the bearings into a full-on clunk, and then you've got problems. If you're replacing a severely worn U-joint in the DCJ assembly, then wash the intermediate shaft and yokes with degreaser and carefully inspect them for cracks. You'll typically find cracks in the thin area between the U-joint cap holes and the edge of the yoke or intermediate shaft.

Jumat, 28 Desember 2012

Does a Faulty Thermostat Affect an Emissions Test?

Engines are, even on their best day, constantly on the verge of not running. While today we tend to make light of little things like engine temperature, the fact is that we can only do so because temperature ranges are so thoroughly researched and planned for. But make no mistake: a properly functioning thermostat is absolutely essential when it comes to maintaining your engine's delicate internal balance.

Emissions Tested

    In general, states that enforce emissions testing test for three different types of vehicle emissions: unburned fuel, carbon monoxide and oxides of nitrogen. Carbon monoxide (abbreviated as CO) is one byproduct of burning hydrocarbon fuels, though it's present in higher amounts when the mixture is too rich. Unburned hydrocarbons (abbreviated as HC) are just what they sound like -- fuel that goes through your engine without getting burned. Oxides of nitrogen (NOx) occur when nitrogen -- about 80 percent of air by volume -- combines with oxygen, whinch generally only happens at very high temperatures.

Unburned Hydrocarbons

    Back before fuel injection, engines used choke plates to restrict the amount of air going into the engine while it was cold. The cold engine needed a far richer mixture, because chilly cylinder walls sucked energy from the combustion event and kept the mixture from burning evenly. Engines are, as a rule, at their most efficient when run at a temperature just below the engine's melt-down point; so, a stuck-open thermostat and the resulting cooler-than-normal engine will definitely decrease combustion efficiency and increase the amount of unburned fuel spewing from the motor. A thermostat that's stuck closed will do this too, but only when the engine is already overheating.

Carbon Monoxide

    Increased hydrocarbon and carbon monoxide levels tend to go hand-in-hand, because they often happen under the same conditions. Under perfect conditions, all of the hydrocarbon (hydrogen plus carbon) fuel in your cylinders would combine with the available oxygen to produce carbon dioxide (CO2) and water (H2O). But, when there's not enough air available to burn the fuel, or when all of the fuel doesn't get burned, the CO2 molecule loses one of its oxygen atoms to become deadly carbon monoxide. Extremely low temperatures will cause the mixture to run rich, while high temperatures will create a rich mixture by decreasing air density in the intake tract.

Oxides of Nitrogen

    It takes a lot of heat to cause nitrogen to fuse with oxygen; if that weren't the case, the two would regularly combine in our atmosphere and kill us. In fact, lightning bolts and volcanoes are about the only two natural forces on the Earth that can fuse nitrogen and oxygen. Nitrogen oxide levels tend to work inversely with CO and HC levels because they rise with combustion chamber temperature. Engine-makers have to strike a fine balance when setting compression or turbo/supercharger boost, using enough to efficiently burn the fuel and make power, but not so much that the engine winds up spewing any more toxic NOx than it has to. High engine temperatures resulting from a stuck-closed thermostat will almost invariably cause a spike in NOx levels; low temperatures will generally decrease NOx levels.

How to Troubleshoot a Fuel Gage

How to Troubleshoot a Fuel Gage

A properly operating fuel gauge is one of the most important instruments to have on any type of motor vehicle. Being able to correctly monitor the amount of fuel available allows you to avoid running out of fuel and being stranded. On some vehicles such as airplanes and boats, running out of fuel can also be deadly. Although normally reliable, fuel gauges do go bad from time to time. Diagnosing why your fuel gauge in not working properly can not only save you money, but it can also save you from an embarrassing break down on the side of the road.

Instructions

    1

    Turn the key switch to the "On" position but do not start the vehicle. Connect the red lead of the multimeter to the "I" or power terminal of the fuel gauge. Connect the black lead of the multimeter to the "G" or ground terminal of the gauge. The multimeter should indicate 12 volts. If 12 volts are not present, check the fuel gauge fuse and wiring for defects. Repair or replace as required.

    2

    Check the fuel gauge ground by connecting the red lead of the multimeter to a known good 12-volt source. Connect the black lead of the multimeter to the ground terminal of the gauge. If 12 volts is indicated on the multimeter then the ground connection to the gauge is good. If no voltage is showing on the multimeter, then the ground connection to the gauge, ground wire, or ground connection is bad. Repair the ground source as required and retest.

    3

    Turn the key switch to the "Off" position. Connect a jumper wire between the "S" terminal of the gauge and the "G" or ground terminal. Turn the key switch to the "On" position but do not start the vehicle. If the gauge reads "Full" then the gauge is good. If the gauge reads less than "Full" then the gauge is defective and must be replaced.

    4

    Remove the sending unit lead wire from he sending unit on the fuel tank if the gauge reads "Empty" but the gauge checks out good in Step 3. Turn the key switch to the "On" position but do not start the vehicle. Ground the sending unit wire to a known good ground using a jumper wire. If the gauge reads "Full" then the sending unit in the fuel tank is defective and must be replaced.

    5

    Remove all jumper wires and multimeter connections. Replace any panel covers or other vehicle components that may have been removed for access.

How to Test Fuel Injectors on a Mazda 626

How to Test Fuel Injectors on a Mazda 626

Fuel injectors in the Mazda 626 vehicles connect to pressurized fuel lines to spray fuel into the combustion chamber. A solenoid is charged with electricity to briefly open a valve allowing the fuel to pass through the injector nozzles into the engine for combustion. The Mazda 626, first introduced in 1979, was equipped with electronic fuel injection in 1988. All Mazda 626 models have been equipped with fuel injectors since 1988. With the exception of OBD-II port reading -- available starting in 1996 -- the steps to test the fuel injectors remains the same for all models produced since 1988.

Instructions

Detecting Fuel Injector Pulse

    1

    Start the engine. Open the hood and locate the top of the fuel injectors. The fuel injectors will be connected to the fuel rail and in close proximity to the spark plugs.

    2

    Press the tip of a long-handled screwdriver against the top of the fuel injector.

    3

    Detect the presence of the valve and solenoid operation. The operation creates a ticking feeling or sound through the injector. Hold the screwdriver handle against your ear to amplify the sound. If the ticking is not present, the solenoid and valve operation is not functioning. Check other injectors to ensure you are accurately diagnosing the failure.

Voltage Detection

    4

    Remove the electrical plug from the fuel injector. Turn the ignition key to the start position but do not start the car.

    5

    Turn the multimeter to measure voltage. Touch the red multimeter probe to one side of the injector plug connection points -- there are two -- and the black probe to the remaining point.

    6

    Read the voltage value displayed on the multimeter readout. The correct voltage should be 12 volts. Replace injectors that are failing but receiving 12 volts of incoming current.

Resistance Test

    7

    Remove all the electrical plugs from the fuel injectors. Move the plugs away from the fuel injector to allow access to the blades on the inside of the injector's plug connector

    8

    Set the multimeter to measure "Ohm," which is a measure of resistance. Ohm measurement may be indicated by the Greek symbol Omega, which looks like an upside down horseshoe with two legs that jut out either side.

    9

    Connect the red multimeter probe to one of the blades on the fuel injector plug connection. Connect the black multimeter probe to the remaining blade. Write down the resistance measure displayed on the multimeter tool. Repeat this step on all remaining fuel injectors

    10

    Compare the resistance measurements of all the injector plugs. Any obvious resistance deviations indicate a failed or failing injector. The resistance measurements should be very close on all injectors. Replace failed or failing injectors.

Electrical Short Test

    11

    Disconnect all the electrical leads from the fuel injectors. Set the multimeter tool to measure voltage.

    12

    Connect the black multimeter probe to the negative terminal on the vehicle's battery. Connect the red multimeter probe to any fuel injector's electrical plug. Do not connect the red probe to the injector.

    13

    Have an assistant engage the starter motor for a few seconds. The disconnected fuel injector plugs prevent the engine from starting but allow the electrical current to pass through to the fuel injector's electrical plug. Monitor the voltage. The voltage should alternate between 0 volts and approximately 12 volts. Leave the multimeter leads connected to the battery and this plug for the next step.

    14

    Connect one of the remaining electrical plugs to the associated fuel injector. Have your assistant attempt to start the engine for several seconds. Monitor the voltage to ensure the original plug alternates between 0 volts and approximately 12 volts. If a fuel injector has an electrical short, when it is connected to the electrical system the original plug will show no alternation of current. Repeat this step until all the remaining electrical plugs, except the original being used for the test, are connected. To test the last injector, connect the electrical plug to the injector, then remove any other plug and test it as you did the original.

    15

    Replace any injector that causes electrical shorting.

Scan Tool

    16

    Connect an OBD-II reader to the OBD-II port. The OBD-II port is below the dash on the driver's side.

    17

    Turn on the reader. Turn the ignition key to the "Start" position. Follow the menu instructions on the reader to retrieve any diagnostic codes being stored by the on-board computer.

    18

    Interpret the diagnostic code. Many readers provide the interpretation on the menu screen. Others require interpretation through the user's manual or the OBD website. Failed injectors may be indicated by codes describing lean or rich conditions in specific cylinders. Other codes may specify injector failure. Test and replace any failed injectors.

Kamis, 27 Desember 2012

Signs of Broken Shocks on a Truck

Signs of Broken Shocks on a Truck

Shock absorbers, also known as dampers, perform a vital function in controlling wheel movement. All springs experience a certain amount of rebound, or unintended bounce-back after the initial compression; think of a rubber ball dropped from a few feet up. Shocks act to slow the rate at which the springs can compress or decompress, which slows body roll and keeps the spring from going into an uncontrolled bound-rebound cycle.

Changes in Ride Quality

    Luxury cars and off-road vehicles often utilize very soft shock absorbers to allow the wheels to move up and down very quickly. This rapid movement ensures a soft ride and traction over rough surfaces, but it also means that the vehicle's body is more prone to roll during left-right transitions. Often times, bad shock absorbers will actually cause an increase in ride quality, causing your truck to ride smooth as a cloud over rough surfaces. While a soft ride is a good thing in most cases, a softer-than-usual ride can signify a set of shocks on their way out.

Nose Diving and Body Lean

    Your truck's brakes are, bar none, the most powerful device it has in terms of changing direction. Brakes exert several times the power of the engine, and at least as much as the suspension absorbs during cornering. When you hit the brakes, your truck's weight will transfer to the front, causing the nose to dip downward. Bad shocks will exaggerate the truck's tendency to nose-dive while braking. Directional changes -- quick left-right-left -- transitions also place a great deal of load on the shocks, so this is where you'll notice excess body roll resulting from blown shock absorbers.

Tire Wear

    Tire scalloping is one of the most telling signs of bad shock absorbers, and happens when something in the suspension is worn out enough to cause high-frequency oscillation. Since the shocks are responsible for controlling such oscillation, they'll be the primary suspect. Tire scalloping -- or "cupping" -- happens around the edge of a tire, and looks like someone took shallow shavings from it with an evil ice-cream scooper. Once tires exhibit scalloping, they're not long for this world; replace them as soon as you replace the shocks, or risk a life-threatening blowout.

The Bounce Test

    This test is a good indicator of shock condition, particularly if you have some sort of reference vehicle on hand. With the truck parked on a level surface, give the fender over one of your wheels a good, hard shove downward. Under normal circumstances, the fender will bounce back up as the spring extends, then down as it settles into position. A "double bounce," where the body bounces up, down, up and down again, is an indicator of bad shocks, but isn't necessarily definitive. Some vehicles have softer shocks than others, and may double-bounce even when new. A triple-bounce, though, is almost always indicative of one or more bad shock absorbers.

How to Test a Slave Cylinder

How to Test a Slave Cylinder

Hydraulic clutches in today's vehicles operate via a master cylinder. The cylinder is easily visible in the engine compartment, bolted to the firewall on the left side just above the steering column. When the driver depress the clutch, hydraulic fluid is pushed down a copper tube to the slave cylinder. The slave cylinder shifts the transmission. When the slave cylinder goes bad, it leaks, or fluid bleeds back into the line resulting in a loss of pressure.

Instructions

    1

    Open the hood. Locate the slave cylinder. It is located on top of the transmission, is approximately four to six inches long.Trace the copper fluid line coming from the master cylinder to the slave. If you can't see it from the hood, try locating it from under the vehicle.

    2

    Look around the cylinder for wet spots that indicate it is leaking. If there is fluid coming from the cylinder, it needs to be replaced.

    3

    Watch the cylinder as an assistant depresses the clutch pedal. On the front of the cylinder is a hydraulic rod. When the clutch is depressed, the rod extends out, pushing a small fork that shifts the transmission. If the rod does not move when the clutch is depressed, the slave needs to be replaced.

    4

    Get in the car and start it. Depress the clutch. If it is hard to shift, the cylinder might be bad. If it does shift, hold the clutch down for five minutes. Try to shift again. If the car will not shift or is very hard to shift or grinds, the slave is bleeding back and needs to be replaced.

Rabu, 26 Desember 2012

The Power Steering Squeals When the Wheels Are Turned at a Low Speed

The Power Steering Squeals When the Wheels Are Turned at a Low Speed

Power-assisted steering uses hydraulic operations to apply pressure force in turning your car. Your car needs to have a full reserve of power steering fluid for this to be effective.

Steering at Speeds

    When your car is moving, it creates kinetic energy. The more kinetic energy, the easier it is for your car to turn; the less, the harder because of the amount of weight your car pulls.

Power Steering Hydraulics

    Your car's power steering pump cycles fluid to the power steering gear or rack. There isn't a lot of pressure required from the pump for steering while going straight--less than 150 pounds per square inch (PSI). But as you begin to slow down, say to turn a corner, then the pressure requirement increases to about 450 PSI. When parking, your car is at such low speeds that it has to pull its weight, especially while turning, requiring 750 to 1,400 PSI. This may be why you might not hear squealing while steering at higher speeds.

Low Power Steering Fluid

    A leak at the high-pressure hose may be where your car is losing power steering fluid. Low fluid causes loud squealing due to a low pressure when steering at low speeds.

How to Check 4X4 Ball Joints

There are two ways to check ball joints, depending on the type of four-wheel drive vehicle you own. Solid axle, four-wheel drive ball joints distribute the load of the weight of the vehicle equally and are checked both radially and laterally. Independent suspension, four-wheel drive vehicles have upper and lower ball joints which are either load bearing or follower types; one is checked radially while the other is checked laterally. Both checks can be completed in just a few minutes in the driveway.

Instructions

    1

    Place wheel chocks behind the rear wheels. Apply the parking brake and raise one front wheel off the ground with a floor jack. Place a jack stand under the axle or lower control arm for safety.

    2

    Check the upper follower type ball joint by grasping the top of the wheel to push and pull it while observing the upper ball joint. Any perceptible radial movement in the ball joint requires replacement according to industry standards.

    3

    Position a pry bar under the tire and pry the wheel and tire up while observing lateral (up and down) movement of the ball joint. Any perceptible movement requires replacement of the ball joint per industry standards.

    4

    Lower the wheel to the ground. Repeat the tests for the other side of the vehicle.

How to Use a Can OBD-ll Code Reader

How to Use a Can OBD-ll Code Reader

Since 2003, vehicle manufacturers have been fitting their car computers with the Controller Area Network (CAN) protocol, an improved computer communication system. You can find several aftermarket second-generation, On Board Diagnostic (OBD-II) code readers compatible with this new system. It will help you monitor and retrieve stored trouble codes from your car's computer memory to diagnose faults related to engine load, fuel pressure, ignition timing and much more. The CAN OBD-II reader may be fitted with a few or multiple features, depending on your particular brand and series.

Instructions

    1

    Look for the 16-pin connector under the dashboard or instrument panel of your vehicle.

    2

    Make sure the ignition key is in the "Off" position and connect the cable connector of your code reader to the 16-pin connector.

    3

    Turn the ignition key to the "On" position but do not start the vehicle. Turn on your code reader and press the "Link" button in your code reader. Depending on your particular brand, your reader will alert you that it is retrieving the codes. Wait for five or 10 seconds for the reader to retrieve the trouble codes from your car's computer.

    4

    Read the display screen on your code reader. If the code reader did not find any codes, it will alert you with a message. It will display the number zero or "No Codes" message. It the reader found trouble codes, it will display the first code in the list.

    5

    Write down this code in a small notepad with a pencil along with any other information given on the screen. The code may read something like this: P0740. It may also show a small number like "1" or an arrow pointing down, on the upper right-hand corner of the display screen, indicating this is the first code in the list. If there are no more codes, you will not see this number or arrow.

    6

    Scroll down the list of codes using the scroll-down button or down arrow to go to the next trouble code in the list and write down this number. Repeat this step until you reach the end of the trouble codes list.

    7

    Press the "Off" button on your code reader to turn it off, turn off the ignition switch and disconnect the code reader from the 16-pin connector.

    8

    Search for the trouble code definitions in your vehicle service manual or the manual for your particular code reader, if it comes with it.

    9

    Erase the trouble codes in your computer memory by connecting your code reader to the 16-pin connector and turn the ignition switch to the "On" position, once you have serviced your vehicle. Press the "Erase" button on your reader. The display on your reader will ask you for confirmation. Press and hold the "Erase" button until you read on your display the message "Done." Remove the code reader.

Selasa, 25 Desember 2012

How to Tell if a Head Gasket Is Blown in a Ford 302

Since its inception in 1968, the Ford 302 was equipped with a pair of one-piece cylinder head gaskets. The gaskets are designed to fill any minute leaks that exist between the top of the engine block and the bottom of the head. If a leak is present, cylinder compression will decline and, in extreme cases, antifreeze will leak into the combustion chamber and exit the tail pipe as white smoke. Aside from disassembling the engine, a blown head gasket can often be detected with a compression gauge.

Instructions

    1

    Start the engine and allow it to idle until warm. Then turn it off.

    2

    Remove all eight spark plugs with a spark plug wrench.

    3

    Install a compression gauge into any of the eight cylinders. The design of compression gauges varies, but most gauges either screw into the spark plug open or are pressed and held into the spark plug opening.

    4

    Crank the engine with the ignition key for several seconds until the needle on the compression gauge reaches its highest point.

    5

    Record the reading of the compression gauge.

    6

    Repeat the test on the other seven cylinders and record the readings.

    7

    Compare the compression readings of all eight cylinders. If the reading of two adjacent cylinders is substantially lower than those of the remaining cylinders, a cylinder head gasket has likely blown.

Causes of a Clunking Noise on a Chevy S10

Causes of a Clunking Noise on a Chevy S10

The Chevy S10 is a compact pick-up truck released by General Motors. It was first introduced to the auto market in 1982. Its high performance version was introduced in 1991, followed by its electric version, which was leased in 1997 and 1998 as a fleet vehicle. The Chevy S10 was very popular when it was first introduced; unfortunately, it's becoming less popular these days. First, it's already an old model, and second, many Chevy S10 owners complain of problems with their pick-up truck. One of the most common problems encountered by Chevy S10 owners are the clunking noises that their pick-up trucks emit.

Old Mechanical Parts

    Clunking noises on a Chevy S10 are usually caused by simple problems such as worn tie rods, ball joints or worn bushings. These problems are often resolved by a simple steering inspection and suspension. However, it is important to observe or notice when you hear the clunking noise, as it may be caused by something else that is more expensive to repair.

Suspension System Issues

    The suspension system is a complex network of different components designed to give passengers an even, smooth and stable ride. Because it is lower to the ground, it is one of the parts of the truck that will easily wear out and break before all other parts. The steering system will usually make a clunking sound will traveling over bumps in the road. If the suspension system has worn struts, shocks, strut bearings or ball joints, these can all be fixed by simply replacing the damaged part.

Steering System Problems

    Problems with the steering system of a Chevy S10 will also produce clunking noises which can indicate problems with un-lubricated ball joints or bearings, worn components, loose components or even low power steering fluid. Rattling sounds may also be heard if there are loose linkage components. Clunking noises during turns may also be heard if there is lack of lubrication in the bearings or joints of the steering linkage. This can be solved by lubricating the affected parts. However, if the clunking noise continues even after lubricating them, then they may need to be replaced. Clunking noises that happen when turning a corner are usually caused by a belt slipping. This clunking noise can be eliminated by simply replacing or adjusting the belt.

Engine Issues

    Chevy engines are usually built for endurance, however, a Chevy S10 may require a new engine if it is constantly being brought to you local repair shop. Hearing noises such as a knocking or clunking sound coming from the engine could mean the engine needs an immediate oil change, engine tune up or a replacement of the spark plugs.

Senin, 24 Desember 2012

How do I Troubleshoot a 2005 Chevrolet Colbalt?

The 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt is a conventional front wheel drive unibody structure vehicle. It is offered as both a sedan and coupe. It is equipped with a 2.2 liter 145 horsepower inline four cylinder engine. Because there are so many different parts, components and systems on a Chevy Cobalt it is important to properly troubleshoot problems you are experiencing with the vehicle. A good way to troubleshoot is based on the sounds and feel the vehicle gives as you operate it.

Instructions

Troubleshoot the Cobalt's Sounds

    1

    Find the knocking sounds coming from your Cobalt as you drive by examining the rod bearings and see if there is enough space between them and the main bearing. You need to also look at whether you have the proper type of bearing installed in the car. Another possible problem that causes a knocking sound is low oil pressure or a dangerously low oil level in the engine.

    2

    Look under the vehicle when you hear a grinding noise to see if the clutch pressure plate, clutch disc or clutch assembly needs to be replaced. The transmission fluid level may also be too low.

    3

    Check your spark plugs and the ignition timing of your Cobalt when you hear a pinging noise. You may need to take your car to a mechanic to test the ignition timing and compare it with the manufacturer's timing specifications. The spark plug should be examined to see whether it is improperly gapped or broken.

Troubleshoot the Cobalt's Feel

    4

    Examine the distributor cap and distributor cap rotor kit when your Cobalt has a lack of power as you attempt to accelerate the vehicle. See if the distributor cap is damaged, worn or otherwise needs to be replaced. The spark plugs, PCV hoses and the engine's wireset may also be possible reasons why your car is lacking power.

    5

    Fix the Cobalt's stalling as you drive by replacing the carburetor. If you feel that the carburetor is still functioning properly, check inside it to see if dirt buildup inside the part is limiting the amount of fuel that can pass through it.

    6

    Find the power steering belt to see if it has broken when it is difficult to turn the steering wheel of your car. If the belt is still working, check the power steering fluid level, power steering pump and power steering hose to see if any of these components are damaged need to be replaced.

Problems With the 2001 Silverado Vortec 8100 V8 Engine

Problems With the 2001 Silverado Vortec 8100 V8 Engine

The 2001 Chevrolet Silverado Vortec 8100 V8 is a big-block engine designed for the full-size pickup truck. The Vortec has more power than the older engines that come in the Silverado and can haul larger loads as well as pull heavier weight. The Vortec does have a recall and Technical Service Bulletins (TSB) published by the manufacturer for problems experienced by Silverado owners.

Crankshaft Position Sensor

    The Vortec 8100 V8 engine which comes in the 2001 Silverado has a recall for more than 11,000 trucks because the crankshaft position sensor is working intermittently or not at all. When the position sensor is working intermittently, the Silverado will stall or the engine will run roughly such as misfire or hesitate. If the position sensor fails completely, the Vortec engine will die and not be able to start back up even after the engine cools. The Silverado must be taken into the dealership and have the crankshaft position sensor replaced free of charge.

Rear Main Oil Seal Leak

    A TSB is published on the 2001 Silverado Vortec 8100 V8 engine for complaints about excessive oil usage of the Chevrolet truck. This Vortec engine problem is attributed to the rear main oil seal leaking because of the engine seal is not installed properly. The Silverado will begin to use a lot of engine oil and the Chevrolet owner will see oil drops on the pavement under the truck when this Vortec engine problem occurs. The 2001 Silverado must be taken in to the dealership and have this engine problem corrected, but the dealership will not perform the work for free unless the Silverado is still under warranty.

Egnine Performance Problem

    Several TSBs are published by the manufacturer about the 2001 Silverado Vortec 8100 V8 engine running roughly, stalling, misfiring or hesitating during normal driving conditions. The TSBs cover multiple problems which cause these Vortec engine conditions, but most of the TSBs state that the problems are occurring because of the distributor, spark plug wires and spark plugs are prematurely failing or working intermittently. The distributor contacts are becoming corroded from road debris contamination while the spark plug wires are chafing against the engine block. The spark plugs which come standard in the Vortec engine also need to be replaced because of a small defect from the spark plug manufacturer.

What Causes a Rear End Whine?

What Causes a Rear End Whine?

Noises that originate in a differential can travel up driveshafts and across axles, confusing diagnostic efforts. The sound level can bring minor annoyance, or foretell serious part failure. Timely reaction to a rear end whine may prevent the need for repair or replacement of expensive differential components. Understanding differential parts and maintenance may help determine the severity of the problem.

Eliminate the Basics

    Any gearbox will be noisy if the fluid level or quality is deficient. Differential fluid can become contaminated by water entering the housing through air vents or axle seals. This commonly happens when venturing off-road or driving on flooded streets. A replacement lubricant may require friction modifiers or an exact viscosity specified for your model of vehicle. No substitutions should be attempted. Rotate your tires to diagnose their involvement. Whine at a different location after rotation may indicate a defective tire.

Get Your Bearings

    Many differential components are mounted on bearings. Worn or dry bearings are capable of a wide range of noises that may change frequency with vehicle speeds. An axle bearing can create whine in the rear end, but will be more prominent on one side of the vehicle. A whine that occurs only on deceleration is often related to the pinion gear bearing. The pinion gear is turned by engine force and subject to bearing wear from the forces applied.

Gears

    Timely actions may prevent a breakdown.
    Timely actions may prevent a breakdown.

    Quiet gear action is directly related to proper matching of gear surfaces. Maladjusted or worn gears create whine at different speeds or loads. The whine will be constantly present, but may change pitch or intensity. Early detection may reveal a simple repair or maintenance requirement. Untreated rear end whine will worsen over time and may be the only warning of imminent differential failure. Substantial wear or damage is usually attributable to abuse or extreme mileage.

Backlash

    Bearing pre-load and gear mesh are carefully measured and meticulously adjusted by trained and experienced technicians during assembly of a differential. Dyes are used to ensure mating surfaces are correct and backlash is set to strict specifications to deter or eliminate whine. Special equipment like dial indicators and inch-pound torque wrenches are calibrated regularly to maintain accuracy. While differential design may seem simple enough, the precision required for quiet, dependable function is best left in experienced hands.

Coil Pack Symptoms in a 1994 Explorer

Back in the days of Nirvana and Clinton, Ford's trademark Explorer wasn't quite the beast that it would become in later years. Originally, the Explorer landed somewhere between the Ranger and F-150 in terms of weight class and came only with a 4.0-liter V-6. But, while fairly large for a V-6, the 4.0-liter didn't rely solely on its displacement for power; its computerized control system and coil pack ignition helped to make the most of every drop of fuel going in. Though this system has historically proven pretty reliable -- at least compared to older distributor-driven systems -- time and wear still take their toll. Sooner or later, you'll run into some sort of coil failure symptoms.

Coil Pack Basics

    On a traditional engine, all of the cylinders get their power from a single ignition coil; a distributor mechanism routes power from that coil to the individual spark plugs. The coil pack on the Explorer V-6 is actually three coils bundled together; the front coils power the plugs on cylinders one and five, the middle powers six and two and the rear coil powers cylinders four and three. When the computer triggers the coil, it sends power to both of the cylinders. But since only one cylinder at a time actually needs the energy, this arrangement is known as a "wasted spark ignition."

Misfire

    The primary result of any coil malfunction is misfire, or failure to cause a spark and ignite the air/fuel mixture in the cylinders. If a single cylinder misfires, you've got a V-5 instead of a V-6. But this won't happen with the Explorer's 4.0-liter, because each coil triggers two cylinders. So, while a single-cylinder misfire is bad, you're guaranteed to drop from a V-6 to a V-4 when you have a coil failure with this particular arrangement.

Misfire and Conditions

    Hot wires don't conduct electricity as well as cold wires; and because hot wires trap electricity, they get even hotter with use, causing a cascade effect of failure in the coil. Because of this, the coil may work well at first, and gradually lose power and cause misfire over the course of a few seconds or minutes (depending upon the severity of failure). Misfires are particularly problematic here not only because you lose two cylinders instead of one, but also because V-6 engines -- because of their odd cylinder count per side -- are inherently prone to vibration. Although losing two cylinders will drop you down to an even cylinder count per side, it'll still throw off everything the factory did to balance the engine in the first place.

Symptoms and Codes

    The first thing you'll notice is a severe drop in horsepower under acceleration, along with a noticeable drop in power. As the coil heats up, it'll fail to ignite the mixture even under less aggressive conditions like idle and part-throttle. When the cylinder misfires, raw fuel will pour out of the engine and exhaust pipe, resulting in a noticeable stench of raw fuel from the exhaust. This will, in turn, trigger a check-engine light when the oxygen sensor detects raw fuel in the exhaust. But the 1994 Explorer doesn't use the Onboard Diagnostics, Series II protocol that all modern cars do. So, you'll either have to take it to someone with a specialized Ford OBD1 code reader, or pull the codes yourself using the proscribed procedure. It's a bit involved, but the information's available online; enter the keywords "1994 explorer dtc codes" into your browser, and peruse the results. "DTC" stands for "diagnostic trouble codes," which is the technical term for the numerical codes that the computer uses to communicate panic.

Minggu, 23 Desember 2012

My Mustang Won't Start

My Mustang Won't Start

Ford Mustangs are fun to drive and attract attention, but if they won't start, they're no use. If your Mustang won't start, you can try a number of steps to get it up and running. Start with the most obvious solutions, like a dead battery, and move to more obscure solutions if the obvious ones don't work. If nothing works at all, you will need to take the car to a repair shop.

Instructions

    1

    Check to see if you are getting any power to the vehicle from your battery. Look to see if lights illuminate when you open your door or if the dashboard lights up when you turn the key to "Run." If you are getting no power, use your jumper cables and another car to jump start the car. If this starts your car, your battery is dead or you have lost your connection on one or both of your leads.

    2

    Remove the positive and negative leads from the battery with the socket set and clean them with a metal brush. Clean the posts with the brush until you can see no corrosion. Even if you don't think this is the problem, it is always good to do. Put the leads back on the battery and tighten them to get a good connection.

    3

    Turn on the lights and try to start the car if you are getting some power, but the car still won't start. If the headlights dim, you probably have a bad starter. If the headlights stay bright, then you have a bad connection to the starter.

    4

    Inspect the starter. If the lights stayed bright, check the electrical connections at the top of the starter. Look to see if the wires are broken or if there is corrosion at the leads. Tighten the connectors with the socket set and ensure you have a good connection.

    5

    Connect the leads on the top of the starter with a screwdriver if your connections are good. Hold onto the end and do not touch the metal. Connect the leads long enough to make a spark and pull the screwdriver away. This should revive the starter for a short time.

    6

    Check the wires from the battery to the starter if none of this helped. These wires are the thickest ones because they require the most power. Check the wires for shorts and change them if necessary.

Kamis, 20 Desember 2012

How to Troubleshoot a Turbo Diesel

Turbo diesel engines have advanced turbocharger and emissions systems, tuned to cleanly burn diesel fuel while taking advantage of the high torque and fuel efficiency benefits of diesel combustion. As such, modern diesel motors are equipped with extensive engine and emissions monitoring systems. This makes troubleshooting most power train problems on your turbo diesel as easy as plugging in an ECU code reader. Alternatively, there are multiple ways to troubleshoot common issues that may not trigger a "check engine" error code.

Instructions

    1

    Plug an ECU error code reader into the ECU access port to troubleshoot problems that trigger the "check engine" light. Generally, the ECU access port is located on the interior center console, above the driver side foot well. Plugging an error code reader into the access port will provide the malfunction code number as well as a brief description of the problem and parts affected. If you don't own an ECU error code reader, try taking your vehicle to a certified dealer or auto service store, as they generally offer free "check engine" code diagnosis.

    2

    Examine the turbocharger flange, as well as various turbo line connections, for signs of oil buildup. This can indicate an overly rich fuel mixture programmed into the ECU. Take your vehicle to a dealer or mechanic to have the fuel tuning or turbo boost pressure adjusted to produce a proper air-to-fuel ratio. Other signs of an overly rich tune on your diesel is excessive black smoke coming from the exhaust while accelerating.

    3

    Examine the turbo system vacuum lines and connections for any unsecured or damaged lines. Since the vacuum lines are made of rubber, they are prone to breaking down due to the high heat produced by turbocharged diesel engines, especially on high-mileage vehicles. Also, boost pressure spikes can pop the lines off of their connections. These malfunctions lead to vacuum leaks, which can cause various air-metering and emissions issues on your turbo diesel. Secure any disconnected vacuum lines, and replace damaged lines with new units. You can buy universal vacuum lines from most auto parts retailers. Simply cut them to the proper length and connect them in place of the damaged stock units.

    4

    Listen for signs of turbocharger bearing failure while accelerating the engine. Common audible signs include excessive turbo whine, as well as inconsistent turbo spool. In more extreme cases, damaged turbo bearings may produce metallic grinding noises when the turbocharger spools. Malfunctioning turbochargers need to be either rebuilt or replaced for continued engine performance and efficiency.

How to Troubleshoot a 1994 Ford Mustang Suspension

The 1994 Ford Mustang is equipped with a modified MacPherson strut front suspension and a four-link rear suspension, featuring coil springs at all four corners. This is a carry-over from the earlier Fox chassis and provides good handling performance. Troubleshooting suspension problems in the Mustang consists of a series of tests on the suspension components to pinpoint the cause of noises and handling problems due to faulty parts. The average home mechanic will have no problem performing these tests in about an hour with basic tools.

Instructions

Front Suspension

    1

    Raise the hood. Bounce the Mustang up and down by pushing on the fender. As you bounce the car, watch the strut mounts bolted to the strut tower on both fenderwells. If the center of the strut mount moves more than 1/2-inch, replace the strut mounts on both sides. Release the car and watch for it to stop bouncing. If it continues to bounce more than twice, replace the struts.

    2

    Push wheel chocks in front of and behind the rear wheels and set the parking brake. Raise and support the front of the Mustang with a floor jack and jack stands placed under the front sub-frame.

    3

    Check the lower ball joints for looseness by supporting the lower control arm with the floor jack. Clean any grease and dirt off the bottom of the ball joint and observe the wear indicator protruding from the ball joint. It must protrude a minimum of 3/64-inch (.047-inch) from the ball joint's surface. Replace the ball joint if the wear indicator is not protruding.

    4

    Inspect the lower control arm bushings where they attach to the K-member with a pry bar to pry the control arm away from the Mustang's K-member. Failed control arm bushings will allow the control arm to move. Replace the bushings if there is more than 1/2-inch of movement.

    5

    Inspect the sway bar links and bushings. Replace any broken links or missing/damaged bushings. Damage and wear to these components will be visible and apparent.

Rear Suspension

    6

    Bounce the rear of the Mustang several times and observe how many times it continues to bounce when you stop. Replace the shocks if the Mustang continues to bounce more than twice. Replace the shocks if they bind and won't allow the vehicle to bounce.

    7

    Secure the front wheels with wheel chocks. Raise and support the rear of the vehicle with a floor jack and jack stands. Visually inspect the rear sway bar for cracks or breaks in the bar. It is common for the 1994 Mustang's rear sway bar to break at the mounting flange bolted to the rear lower control arms.

    8

    Check the rear control arm bushings for looseness and damage. Insert a pry bar between the control arm and the axle and pry on the control arm while observing the bushings. Repeat the test for both lower and upper control arms.Replace the bushings if they allow excessive movement of the control arm, more than just the compression of the rubber in the bushing when compressed.

    9

    Inspect the torque boxes on the chassis that the front of the control arm is bolted to. It is common for the torque boxes in the 1994 Mustang to crack from hard use. Have any cracks welded by a qualified welder.

Causes of Clutch Fan Noise

A working fan clutch improves the efficiency of a vehicle's cooling system and reduces wear on the engine. It's located between the water-pump shaft and the fan and allows the fan to run at lower speeds but also detach when air movement from higher speeds is cooling the engine. When a fan clutch begins to make noise, it may be a sign that it's breaking down.

Fan Noise

    You might hear noises coming from the fan clutch when it's fully engaged and the fan assembly is running at maximum power. Noises also could occur after starting the car because the silicone and fluids inside the fan clutch will settle when the fan clutch is idle. These noises should stop after a minimal amount of time.

    If the noise sounds unusually loud or excessive, the fan clutch assembly may not be engaging or may have locked into place.

Fan Roaring

    A roaring noise from the fan assembly could mean that the fan clutch has locked up. If you try to turn the fan by hand and are unable to do so, or the fan makes a grinding noise when you try to turn it, you may need to replace the fan clutch.

Other Signs of Problems

    A fan-clutch assembly that's breaking down may exhibit a variety of symptoms, including the engine overheating or the air conditioner failing to cool. A frozen fan clutch even can lead to a vehicle vibrating.

Buick Rendezvous Hatch Latch Problems

The Buick Rendezvous, a crossover sport utility vehicle (SUV), was manufactured from 2002 to 2007. Although Edmunds.com called the Rendezvous an "affordable and practical" option, it is prone to hatch latch problems, which may result in injury.

Problem

    Buick technical service bulletins (TSBs) indicate that hatch latch problems are common among the 2002 and 2003 Rendezvous models. The primary problem is that the Rendezvous' latch may be faulty, which might result in improper liftgate security.

Warning

    Improper liftgate security may result in a rear occupant being ejected from the vehicle during a rear crash. TSBs state that the Rendezvous' latch is likely to fracture in the event of a rear crash.

Solution

    There was a safety recall issued in 2004 regarding the faulty latch and owner notification began in June that year. The recall states that dealers will "add structural reinforcement to the liftgate in the area adjoining the latch assembly."

    If you were not notified, contact Buick via your nearest dealer.

How to Troubleshoot Gas in My Oil

How to Troubleshoot Gas in My Oil

In order for your engine to perform properly all of its various fluids should remain within the parts of the engine they were designed to maintain. Vehicle coolant should remain within the sealed cooling system. Oil should remain within the engine oil passages and gasoline should remain within the fuel supply and combustion systems. When unburned fuel is found in the vehicle's oil, there could be several contributing factors to this problem. Some of these factors are mechanically based while others have to do with vehicle-use habits. Perform a few checks to see what's causing your issue.

Instructions

    1

    Determine the average length of time the vehicle is driven on a typical outing. If the vehicle is only used for short driving sessions, such as 5 to 10 minutes at a time, the engine is not being warmed enough to burn the fuel properly. Drive the vehicle for at least 30 minutes continuously at least once a week. This will help remove any excess fuel.

    2

    Inspect the spark plugs for wear or damage. Fouled or damaged spark plugs will not burn the fuel mixture properly. This can cause a rich condition, allowing excess fuel into the combustion chamber. A rich condition exists when the engine is trying to process too much fuel. This occurs when the air-to-fuel ratio is not at a proper level for optimum efficiency.

    3

    Check the carburetor or fuel injectors to be certain they are not delivering too much fuel. A float adjustment that is too high or a leaking fuel injector will allow excess fuel into the combustion chamber.

    4

    Perform a compression test to determine the condition of the rings and valve guides. Look for consistent compression readings that do not vary significantly from cylinder to cylinder. An abnormally low reading indicates a problem with that cylinder.

Rabu, 19 Desember 2012

Hydraulic Hose Fatigue and Failure

Hydraulic Hose Fatigue and Failure

Every system that uses fluid pressure to transfer force between two points is a hydraulic system. The arteries and veins of hydraulic systems are the hoses through which the hydraulic fluid passes. These specially constructed hoses are subjected to high pressures, extremes of temperature and heavy use. These conditions and others lead to fatigue and failure in hydraulic hoses.

Metal Fatigue

    A hydraulic hose is made from wire-reinforced rubber. While this reinforcement provides a significant portion of the hoses strength, metal fatigue in this wire reinforcement is one of the causes of hydraulic hose failure. Hydraulic hoses connected to a robotic arm, for example, flex, bend and stretch the same way the muscles in your own arm move, stretch, bend and flex as your arm moves. This repetitive flexing has the same effect on hydraulic hoses that repeated flexing has on your arm: fatigue. Whereas your arm grows stronger, though, the bending and flexing eventually causes the collapse of the integrity of the wire reinforcing the hydraulic hose. The hose, in turn, loses its integrity and fails.

Chafing

    Hydraulic hoses face another form of wear. Unlike the muscles in your arm, hydraulic hoses may rub against the framework of the machine component they move. To resist this form of wear, called chafing, hoses may be encased in a spiral polyethylene wrap that both absorbs the wear and acts as a wear indicator -- the wraps color sharply contrasts with the color of the hose so that worn areas stand out in a casual inspection. Another preventative measure falls to the designer of the hydraulic system: The designer must overcome the challenge of routing the hydraulic lines so they do not interfere with, or rub against the machine or each other.

Temperature and Pressure

    Temperature changes and changes in internal pressure affect not only the operation of the hydraulic machine, but also the hoses that carry the oil to operate the machine. Extreme temperature changes cause accelerated deterioration in the rubber of the hose, in the same way that prolonged cold weather can cause the radiator hoses on your automobile to crack and deteriorate.

    Pressure changes resulting from a failing hydraulic valve or a faulty hydraulic pump wear on hydraulic hoses in two ways: Internally, the rubber may be stretched beyond its limits of elasticity; externally, as the hose expands and contracts under the overpressure of a faulty pump, the hose's wire reinforcement is deformed and may fail, leading to failure.

Temperature, Pressure and Physical Damage

    Cuts, bumps, hoses forcibly torn from fittings, all cause hydraulic hose failure, as bumbling maintenance personnel turn a comedy of errors into hydraulic hose failure. Proper training in the care and repair of hydraulic equipment and equipment systems is essential. Generally, the key to managing the life of a hydraulic systems components, including the hydraulic hoses, requires a commonsense approach and an understanding that preventative maintenance is usually less costly than repair.

1989 Honda Accord Heater Problems

1989 Honda Accord Heater Problems

Heating problems with a 1989 Honda Accord can be a result of low coolant, a faulty heater valve, leaking heater hose, damaged heater core or broken heater and AC blower. The heating system requires sufficient coolant to function properly. The coolant flow must be regulated through a reliable heater valve, sealed hoses and a working heater core. An efficient heater and AC blower carries the warm or cool air from the heater core to the passenger cabin.

Low Coolant

    A Honda Accord requires sufficient coolant to flow through the AC/heating system from the radiator. Low levels of coolant can prevent hot or cool air from blowing through the air vents. The coolant can evaporate from overheating or leak through the radiator or heater hoses. No apparent leak may be an indication of a flow problem between the radiator into the heater.

Faulty Heater Valve

    The heater valve regulates the flow of coolant from the radiator into the heating assembly. The heater valve can be stuck closed and prevent the coolant from flowing through to the heater core. The temperature gauge can also be stuck open and allow the coolant to flow through continuously without cooling or heating adequately.

Leaking Heater Hose

    A coolant leak can occur in a radiator hose or heater hose. A small leak may not be detected easily. A substantial reduction of coolant may first be noted in the water reservoir or coolant overflow tank. The coolant returns to the overflow tank as the engine cools and should not be depleted rapidly, except in cross country driving or high desert temperatures. Look for leaks under the engine compartment. A large leak can be a crack in the reservoir tank or water pump.

Damaged Heater Core

    A damaged heater core often results in an interior leak under the dash board on the passenger side floor. The leak might appear to be from the cold and rainy weather. You can smell the coolant in the passenger compartment. A plain white napkin placed on the soaked carpet may reveal a colored oily substance. You can also test it with your finger tips. It will feel slightly oily and smell like coolant.

Failed Heater Motor

    The AC/heater blower controls the airflow from the coolant system to the air vents. Low air pressure through the vents can indicate a failing blower motor. No airflow to the cabin indicates a damaged motor. You can test the plug to the motor underneath the dash board on the passenger's side. You should first check the fuse box for a blown fuse. Find information on the fuse box location in the owner's or parts manual.

How to Reset the Airbag Light for My Pontiac Vibe

How to Reset the Airbag Light for My Pontiac Vibe

The Pontiac Vibe is mechanically identical to the Toyota Matrix, including the airbag supplemental restraint system (SRS). The SRS light may come on for several reasons, such as if the electrical system has had a change in voltage, if there is a malfunction in the SRS or if the diagnostic troubleshooting code (DTC) system registers an error. Unfortunately, the light may not go off, even after the error has been fixed, so the light itself will need to be reset.

Instructions

    1

    Open the hood of the car and locate the battery.

    2

    Loosen the bolt holding the negative (black) battery cable to the battery terminal. Remove the negative battery cable and wait for 90 seconds.

    3

    Reattach the negative battery cable. Tighten the bolt. Close the hood and start the car. After six seconds the SRS light should go off. If it does not go off, or if it flashes, this indicates an error in the SRS that needs to be repaired. Take your Vibe to a mechanic with a computer that can read the DTC and determine the specific error so your SRS can be repaired.

How to Tell If You Have a Warped or Cracked Head on a Civic

How to Tell If You Have a Warped or Cracked Head on a Civic

The effect of a warped or cracked engine cylinder head in a Honda Civic car causes the same problems as the condition would in other cars. The engine runs poorly if at all, leakage occurs of coolant and oil, and permanent engine damage may occur at high temperatures. Once the problem is noticed, the Honda needs to be repaired and taken out of operation until fixed. While the car may still be able to move, doing so only makes the problem worse in short period of time.

Instructions

    1

    Examine around the parked car after it has been sitting for at least a day. Use a flashlight to illuminate dark areas. Look underneath the car for signs of coolant or engine oil leaks and dripping. Open the driver's door and pull the latch to pop the hood of the car.

    2

    Look inside the car hood compartment, examining the engine unit carefully. Move around the car as you look for signs of oil leakage and dripping from the engine. Wipe those areas with a shop rag where you think a leak may be occurring to see if it occurs again when the engine is running.

    3

    Close the hood and start the engine. Let the engine run for a while and keep it in park. Get out and examine the exhaust pipe for white or blue smoke -- a sure sign of coolant or burning oil, respectively.

    4

    Turn the car off. Check the battery if the car does not start right away. Confirm with a battery tester that the battery has sufficient charge by connecting the tool's signal readers to the battery temporarily.

    5

    Drive the car down a street, preferably one with a hill. Try to gun the engine to feel for any loss of compression in the engine performance. Feel for any give in the throttle that causes you to push for more gas without any increase in speed.

    6

    Park the car again and pop the hood once more. Examine the areas around the engine you previously wiped clean. Look for new engine oil leaks dripping down from the engine head area.

Selasa, 18 Desember 2012

How to Troubleshoot a Boat Trailer Brake

How to Troubleshoot a Boat Trailer Brake

Trailer brakes prove their worth when trailer weights exceed 3,000 pounds. Some states require trailer brakes on tandem axle trailers, and trailers that weigh as little as 1,000 pounds. Good functioning boat trailer brakes avoid accidents by taking the stress and inertia off the tow vehicle, so both vehicles can slow to a reasonable stop in a safe distance. Electric and surge brakes can be found on boat trailers. Boat trailers endure frequent water immersion, lending additional problems to the system. Troubleshooting boat trailer brakes requires a process of elimination and some basic tools.

Instructions

    1

    Tow the trailer around town for thirty minutes or so and make numerous, firm stops. After you have made your last stop approach one of the trailer wheels and point a laser temperature sensor at the exterior side of the rim and make a note of the temperature reading with pen and paper.

    2

    Move quickly to the other axle and record the temperature. If the trailer has a tandem axle setup, record all the temperatures for all the wheels. If any wheel registers 70 degrees Fahrenheit lower than the others, it indicates that wheel's brakes have not made contact and have malfunctioned.

    3

    Hold a regular pocket compass next to the outside rim of the wheel near the hub location. Have an assistant push in the manual stop button on the brake controller, inside the cab. Watch the compass needle for movement. The needle will swing toward the wheel if the electric magnets inside the brake assembly function properly. If no magnetic signal appears, trace the wire back to the harness and check and clean the connections.

    4

    Look for the emergency cord or chain disconnect between your tow vehicle and the trailer frame. The emergency disconnect serves the function of breaking the electrical circuit in the braking system, should the tow vehicle separate from the trailer. Accidental disconnects or loose connections will cause the brakes to activate and stop the trailer. Clean the connection plug with electrical contact spray and insert it firmly into the wire jack.

    5

    Determine if you have surge type brakes, by referring to your owner's manual. Find the surge coupler mounted on the trailer tongue, It consists of a master brake cylinder and a linkage arm that connects to the master cylinder push rod. Unscrew the master cylinder cap and check the brake fluid level. It must be full. Activate the linkage by hand, pushing it back and forth. Check if the linkage depresses the master cylinder push rod, and that the push rod has resistance pressure.

    6

    Use a tire wrench to loosen the lug nuts on one wheel, but do not remove them. Use a trailer floor jack to lift the vehicle and place two heavy-duty jack stands under the frame, on the inside and outside of the wheel. Finish removing the lug nuts with the tire wrench. Use pliers to remove the hub dust cap and the cotter pin holding the castellated nut on the spindle. Unscrew the castellated nut with a socket.

    7

    Remove the drum from the axle hub. Inspect all the hold-down and return springs for corrosion, distortion and proper placement on their pivot studs. Broken or stretched springs must be replaced. Check the shoe lining, making sure it has not worn down past the rivets. Replace thin lining. Look for leaks at the wheel cylinder by pulling back the dust boots. Leaks indicate worn cylinder pistons and cups.

    8

    Use pliers to grip and move the wheel cylinder piston rods in and out of the cylinder bores. They should move with pressure, and should not be frozen in place. Push the top of the brake shoes together and compress the rods inward. Both brake shoes should move inward and spring outward. Remove all of the wheels and check the internal brake parts in this fashion. Replace any spring, brake shoe, wheel cylinder or retaining clip that appears broken or defective.

    9

    Refer to your owner's manual for the correct foot-pounds of torque required for your wheels. Insert the lug nuts on the wheels and snug them tight with the tire iron. Lift the trailer with the floor jack and remove the jack stands. Use a torque wrench to tighten the wheels to manufacture's specifications.

How to Troubleshoot a '99 Ford Explorer 4.0 V-6

How to Troubleshoot a '99 Ford Explorer 4.0 V-6

The 1999 Explorer is a second-generation design of Ford's popular sport utility vehicle. The Explorer began production in 1990 and is still in production as of the 2011 model year. Typical problem areas for this particular model Explorer are found in the heating system, rear wiper and the intake manifold. Troubleshooting the Explorer should begin with inspecting these known problem areas.

Instructions

    1

    Examine the heating controls to determine if the system is stuck on the highest heat setting. Replacing the entire heater box will solve this issue, as the heater blend door is likely malfunctioning.

    2

    Examine the rear wiper blade to determine if it is making adequate contact with the window. If not, replace the wiper blade and wiper arm.

    3

    Examine the O-ring gaskets on the intake manifold to determine if they are leaking. This problem will also cause the "check engine" light to come on.

Senin, 17 Desember 2012

2003 Focus Instrument Cluster Problems

The Ford Focus, a compact car available with a manual or automatic transmission, was introduced in 1999. Edmunds.com contends the Focus is affordable and stylish. Nonetheless, the 2003 Focus suffers from numerous electrical issues, especially in terms of its instrument cluster panel.

Odometer Failure

    2004 Ford technical service bulletins (TSBs) report that odometers on the 2003 Focus often behave erratically. The most common symptom is a non-functioning odometer that shows only dash marks or is blank. A faulty odometer improperly records the amount of miles the car has traveled.

Malfunction Indicator Lamp

    Ford TSBs issued in 2003 and 2004 indicate that malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) problems are common with the 2003 Focus. A faulty MIL, also known as a check engine light, may become illuminated due to circuit failure and/or an improperly installed remote starter system.

Instrument Cluster Noise

    Ford TSBs also report that instrument cluster squeaking and rattling noises are prevalent with the 2003 Focus. Instrument cluster noise may indicate a loose panel cover and/or wiring problems. A professional can check the wiring or insulate the panel cover with rubber stripping to stop the noise.

How to Diagnose a 97 Honda Accord

How to Diagnose a 97 Honda Accord

If sold in the United States, a 1997 Honda Accord is equipped with a second generation On-Board Diagnostic system. The system itself is centered in the Accord's powertrain control module and runs a series of routine maintenance checks. If the OBD-II system locates a problem, a diagnostic code is created. If the problem continues the system will activate the dashboard's check engine light. While the OBD-II system is sometimes thought of as only for analyzing the engine, it also monitors other systems including the Accord's body, chassis electrical system and network communications. An OBD-II compliant handheld device can diagnose any one of those systems.

Instructions

Instructions

    1

    Open your OBD-II code reader's manual to the pages that list generic OBD-II codes. Place a bookmark by these pages. Then, go onto the Internet and locate Honda's supplemental OBD-II codes and print these codes out.

    2

    Open the door to the Accord and take a seat behind the steering wheel. Place your coding resources on the front passenger's seat.

    3

    Remove the ashtray from the Accord's dashboard middle console. The ashtray will be located directly below the radio. In the space revealed, you will find a 16 pin-receiving computer outlet. This is your Accord's Data Link connector. Connect your code reader's diagnostic cable to the DLC and turn the device on.

    4

    Insert your key into the Accord's ignition and switch to the on designation. Code Reader brand devices requires that the Accord's engine be running. If you are using one of these devices, engage the key and start the engine.

    5

    Check the code reader's display screen. Some scanners are preset for automatic code retrieval. Once the reader and the Accord's OBD-II system sync, the codes may already be waiting for you. If you do not own a device preset in this manner, consult your reader's manual for command entering instructions. The general layout and operational structure of every brand of code reader is slightly different.

    6

    Scroll through the codes on your reader. There are ways you can begin to sort through them, without looking up the definitions. First, look at the status the OBD-II system has assigned each code. A pending designation means the code's corresponding problem has not happened often. A trouble designation means the problem has happened with a high frequency. Once a code is labeled trouble, the OBD-II system switches on the check engine light.

    7

    Look at the first character of each alpha-numeric code. This letter will tell you where the problem is located. P-codes refer to the engine, fueling, and emissions systems. B-codes cover the Accord's body as well as mechanical components not involved with the engine. C-codes cover the chassis electrical system. U-codes cover network communications.

    8

    Make a list on a separate sheet of paper. Group codes together by their status. Always give trouble codes higher priority. Group the codes together by where they are located. In this regard, put all the P-codes together, the B-codes together and so on.

    9

    Consult the reference materials you left on the passenger's seat. Look up a definition for each code. Copy the definition next to its corresponding alpha-numeric code number on your categorized list. Once you have a full hist of diagnoses, consider whether you have the skill and expertise to perform the repairs yourself. If you opt to drive your Accord to a Honda-approved mechanic, take the list with you. It will save you money on the mechanic's diagnostic fees.

Minggu, 16 Desember 2012

How Do I Troubleshoot Auto Electrical Systems?

How Do I Troubleshoot Auto Electrical Systems?

Troubleshooting auto electrical problems can be frustrating. Remember that each device needs a certain amount of voltage to function and that each circuit needs a power source.

Battery

    Disconnect your car's battery before attempting any electrical troubleshooting, as this will limit the risk of accidental shock. To avoid your car's computer forgetting its "learned" settings, use a 9 volt memory saver. This device plugs into your car's cigarette lighter.

Circuit Check

    Use a voltmeter to test for voltage to all devices in your car such as headlights, windshield wipers and blower motor. Check the circuit breaker, fuse or fuse link for any non-functioning circuits, as this may be the source of your problem.

Ground Connection

    Voltage is useless if a circuit does not have a complete ground path to the battery according. An ohmmeter can determine whether or not a circuit has this path. Never use an ohmmeter on a live circuit.

What Causes Poor Cylinder Combustion?

What Causes Poor Cylinder Combustion?

Internal Combustion Engines (ICEs) power the vast majority of vehicles driven by consumers throughout the world. The construction of these engines is an engineering and design marvel, combining many mechanical principles in tandem. One of these mechanical systems is the cylinder, the central working mechanism that converts motion to working power for the engine. Efficient use of fuel is the purpose of proper cylinder combustion.

Camshaft Timing

    The camshaft is responsible for the timing of the opening of the valves during the stroke cycle of the pistons, pumping inside of the cylinders of the engine. At correct timing, this is a regular, smooth cycle. If the timing is thrown off in any way, due to electronic or mechanical failure, the cylinder can experience either delayed or premature combustion.

Low Pressure

    The compression ratio of an engine compares the pressure created by a piston at the top and bottom of a cylinder stroke. In a damaged, worn or malfunctioning system, the compression ratio can be wildly variable, leading to poor combustion. The culprits in this case are usually bad spark plugs, blown head gaskets, overworked pistons or faulty air valves.

Poorly Mixed Fuel

    Low-octane fuel can be used in high-octane rated engines, but it's not recommended precisely for the reason that they take more energy to ignite. This overworks and degrades the life of the engine over time. This produces what is called "ping" or "engine knocking," inadvertent detonation of fuel by the spark plug outside of the normal cycle action. This leads to degradation of the cylinder.

Improper Fuel/Air Mix

    A bad fuel-air mixture can cause poor fuel efficiency at best and catastrophic engine damage at worst. If too low, meaning that there is more air than fuel, the cylinders will overwork to compensate, leading to severe wear due to a "dry" fuel mixture. This bad combustion is also caused because small amounts of fuel help lubricate the piston and cylinder. If too high, meaning more fuel than air, more fuel will be consumed than is necessary, leading to poor fuel efficiency.

Sabtu, 15 Desember 2012

How to Tell If a Ford Explorer PCM Is Bad?

How to Tell If a Ford Explorer PCM Is Bad?

A powertrain control module is part of a Ford's overall On-Board Diagnostic system. It is your Ford's central computer. If it ceases to function correctly, then your vehicle's overall OBD-II will not work. Your vehicle will still function, but it will not be able track engine and vehicle malfunctions as they occur. As a result, you will not be able to catch serious problems before they lead to fault, failure or breakdown. Checking the system requires the use of an OBD-II scanner. You will be able to tell very quickly whether the PCM is working or not.

Instructions

    1

    Search through your OBD-II scanner's handbook for a list of generic OBD-II codes and their definitions. Mark the spot by either dog-earring the page or using a bookmark.

    2

    Locate Ford's supplemental OBD-II codes online. Print out those codes. This is the quickest, lowest costing option. The Explorer's manual will neither have Ford's codes or the generic OBD-II codes. If you own a Haynes or Chilton's guide for your Explorer's year of manufacture, you will find the codes you need in the chapter that covers emissions.

    3

    Read through both the generic and Ford OBD-II codes. Mark or highlight all the codes that deal with the PCM. These codes will be on both the generic and the Ford-specific lists.

    4

    Open the Explorer's passenger-side door and place the materials into the navigator's seat. You will return to them later.

    5

    Open the driver's side door and look under the dashboard and left of the steering column. There, you wind the OBD-II system's Data Link Connector. Connect your OBD-II scanner to this computer outlet.

    6

    Turn on the Explorer's electrical system. Depending on your brand of OBD-II scanner, you may also have to turn the Explorer's engine on.

    7

    Look at your scanner's read out. If codes have not been pulled from the system, ensure that your scanner has been switched on. Some brands of scanners can auto-activate and auto-retrieve codes. Enter in a code "scan" command,if your scanner is not pre-set to immediately do so.

    8

    Look at the scanner again. If the codes have not been retrieved, then you have a serious problem with your PCM. Once the codes have been pulled from the system, pick up the materials you left in the navigator's seat. Compare the codes on the scanner with the ones your noted earlier. If there are no PCM related codes in the system, then the module is working.

    9

    Take the Explorer to a mechanic should your find PCM related trouble codes. In the best case scenario, you may only need to have the PCM reprogrammed. Your worse case scenario involves paying for new module entirely.

Selasa, 11 Desember 2012

How to Troubleshoot a 2002 Ford F-250 That Misfires

How to Troubleshoot a 2002 Ford F-250 That Misfires

The Ford F-250 was built tough to handle most any load. Many people find the F-250 as a great choice for all kinds of transportation and pulling needs. If your 2002 Ford F-250 has a misfire, then it could be due to a couple issues. Before you take it in to the repair shop, try a few troubleshooting ideas. You might find that you can solve the problem without spending high repair costs. Be prepared to spend an hour or two working on your Ford while tracking down the problem.

Instructions

    1

    Start your F-250 and make sure the parking brake is set.

    2

    Lift up the hood on your truck. Remove the spark plug wires from the spark plugs one at a time with the spark plug pliers. The spark plug pliers are designed to keep you from getting a shock when you remove the wires while the engine is running. The spark plug wires run from the distributor to each spark plug on each side of the block. As you remove each spark plug wire, listen to the engine. If the engine starts to miss worse, then that cylinder is firing well. Make sure you replace the spark plug wire on the spark plug before moving to the next one. When you notice that the engine does not misfire worse when you remove a wire, then you know you have an issue with the spark plug wire or spark plug.

    3

    Replace the spark plug wire when you find a misfire as described above. Once you replace the spark plug wire, see if it fixed your misfire. If it did not fix the misfire on that cylinder, then move on to the next step.

    4

    Let the engine cool down a bit. Remove the spark plug with the spark plug socket set. You will rotate the spark plug counterclockwise to remove it. Look at the tip of the spark plug. Install a new spark plug in the reverse of removal. Repeat this process for each spark plug wire and spark plug to make sure they are all firing correctly. This should solve the misfire problem. If it does not solve the problem then you have a more serious issue that may require an engine overhaul.

Senin, 10 Desember 2012

Slack Timing Chain: Symptoms

Slack Timing Chain: Symptoms

Timing chains are used in some vehicles in place of timing belts. Unlike timing belts, it is unusual to replace a timing chain. Common chain problems include losing some or most of the tension that holds in in place and keeps it operating properly. There are several symptoms you may experience if your car or truck has a slack timing chain.

Chattering

    When a timing belt starts to fail, it squeals. When a timing chain starts to fail due to slack, normally caused by the belt tensioners weakening, it rattles and chatters. You will be able to hear a clicking, chattering noise coming from the area around your cam shaft if your timing chain has slack in it.

Loss of Power

    The timing chain turns the camshaft. If the timing chain is not tight, then it will not be turning the cam shaft at the correct interval and speed. This causes a number of problems, including your engine losing power and a possible decrease in compression.

Not Running

    If you have a great deal of slack in your car's timing chain, your vehicle may stall out from time to time or completely cease operating. If the camshaft will not turn in your motor, your car will be unable to power the engine and the car will stop running.

How to Check Jeep Codes

How to Check Jeep Codes

Your Jeep is equipped with a computer that senses and stores all of the information about how your Jeep is running and any problems it may be having. If your Jeep vehicle is not operating properly, you can scan its computer and check the error codes to determine what is causing the problems. These error codes are designed to tell you which part of the Jeep is malfunctioning. Each error code represents a particular problem your Jeep is experiencing. By determining what the error codes mean, you can figure out how to repair your Jeep.

Instructions

    1

    Find a code reader to scan your Jeep's motor. Mechanic shops and automotive parts stores have scanners on hand to use for diagnosis or you can purchase one for your personal use.

    2

    Attach the code reader to the Jeep's computer. The specific procedure for hooking up the code reader will depend on both the type of Jeep you have, the age of your Jeep and the model of code reader. When the error codes start to appear, write each one down exactly as it appears.

    3

    Determine the meaning of each error code, using a code reader. You can find lists of Jeep error codes and generic error codes online at Engine Light Help. Your code reader should come with a booklet of code meanings.

How to Test an Idler Arm

An idler arm is used on vehicles equipped with a parallelogram steering linkage system to support the passenger side of the linkage and maintain the toe angle. When the idler arm wears out the toe angle changes when the vehicle is turned while driving. This condition will cause excessive tire wear, rattling and poor handling. Testing of the idler arm's condition is straightforward using common suspension and steering testing techniques.

Instructions

    1

    Set the parking brake firmly and place wheel chocks behind the rear wheels. Raise and support the front of the vehicle using a floor jack and jack stands placed under the frame. Lower the jack until the vehicle is resting on the stands.

    2

    Locate the idler arm on the passenger side of the steering linkage. The idler arm is bolted to the frame of the vehicle and the steering center link. The center link is the long rod that runs from the Pitman arm on the steering gear box to the idler arm and both tie-rods are attached to it as well.

    3

    Grasp the center link near the idler arm with your strong hand and push up on the link. Industry standards require replacement if the idler arm has any perceptible movement when reasonable hand force is applied.

How to Troubleshoot a '93 Chevy Blazer

How to Troubleshoot a '93 Chevy Blazer

The 1993 Chevy Blazer was manufactured with a 5.7-liter, V-8 engine. The vehicle was made with a five-speed manual transmission and it features automatic locking hubs for the four-wheel drive, and power steering. The two-door SUV seats five passengers and has a large storage space in the rear. Troubleshooting the vehicle requires basic mechanical observations and knowledge of the engine functions. Regular driving allows the owner to monitor and observe changes in the performance.

Instructions

    1

    Turn the key and try to start the Blazer. If the engine is dead, test the electric components for power. If the power is weak or dead, use a voltage meter to test the battery. Use a trickle charger to charge the battery and start the vehicle. Replace the battery if it continues to fail.

    2

    Test the alternator with a voltage meter if the battery is in good condition and the power is failing. A bad alternator will experience a voltage drop that sucks power from the battery with intermittent charging cycles. The cycles will eventually render the battery useless.

    3

    Hit the starter with a hammer if the power is good but the engine is dead. If the starter teeth do not engage with the hammer, use a socket wrench to remove the two starter bolts and have it tested by a mechanic or auto parts store. Replace the starter if it does not pass the test.

    4

    Drive the vehicle and vary the speed without breaking the legal speed limit. If the engine sputters and fails to provide acceleration power, the fuel pump is failing. If the Blazer requires extra strength to steer, the power steering pump is failing. Difficulty steering is also attributed to the front axle actutator in the four-wheel drive models.

    5

    Test the transmission while driving the vehicle. Listen and feel for irregularities in the shifting process as the Blazer changes gears. If the transmission skips or hesitates, it must be serviced as soon as possible.

Minggu, 09 Desember 2012

1990 Ford F250 Won't Stop Fogging

1990 Ford F250 Won't Stop Fogging

Ford's 1990 F-250 pickup trucks are supplied with either a combination air conditioning and heater system, or just a heater system. There are four instrument panel registers, a vent below the window and floor vents. Air is fed from a master vent outside and below the windscreen through to a blower fan, which distributes heated, cooled or dehumidified air in the cabin. You can often correct fogging problems on this vehicle by troubleshooting the vent system and properly adjusting the controls.

Instructions

    1

    Clear the exterior vent below the windshield of any debris like leaves and snow. Remove any maps, gloves or other gear from the top of the dashboard. The vent located here is used for de-fogging. It can't be obstructed or defogging won't work.

    2

    Select the "mix" position if the outside ambient temperature is above 50 degrees and you want to defog the windshield. If the temperature is above 50, the air will be dehumidified. Select a fan position other than "0," and choose a temperature setting that's likely to give you a comfortable ride. Turn on the air conditioning if you want the cabin cooled.

    3

    Select the "def" position if the windshield still won't defog, or if the outdoor temperature is below 50 degrees. Maximum airflow will be directed at the windshield. The air can be cooled or heated, but move the temperature knob into the red gradation if the windshield needs defrosting too. The "def" setting will also dehumidify the air above 50 degrees.

    4

    Choose another position once the windshield has defogged. For example, select "floor" to warm yourself and your passenger.

The Indications of a Bad Temperature Sending Unit on a Chrysler

The Indications of a Bad Temperature Sending Unit on a Chrysler

The temperature sending unit or engine coolant temperature sensor (ECT) monitors the engine temperature and sends a signal back to the Chrysler's computer. There are symptoms or indications that the temperature sending unit is failing or bad. These symptoms cause the engine to act abnormally, such as stalling or missing.

Temperature Gauge

    One of the first indications of a bad temperature sending unit in a Chrysler is found on the instrument panel. A temperature gauge is located on the dash of the Chrysler and informs the operator of the current engine temperature. The gauges look differently on each model of the Chrysler, but the gauge shows what is an acceptable engine temperature. The temperature gauge also shows what is unacceptable by a warning light or gauge needle moving into the red on the gauge.

Radiator Steam

    A symptom of a bad temperature sending unit is steam rising from under the hood of the Chrysler from the radiator. The radiator coolant has gotten so hot that it is turning the coolant from liquid to steam. This is a good indication that the temperature sending unit is not working properly.

Fuel Efficiency

    Another indication of a bad temperature sending unit is the fuel efficiency of the Chrysler. The fuel efficiency is the measurement of miles that can be driven on one gallon of gas. A Chrysler that gets 25 mpg will begin to get only 18 or 20 mpg when the temperature sending unit fails.

Engine Temperature Slow to Warm

    A bad temperature sending unit in a Chrysler will prevent the engine temperature from warming at a normal rate. Once the engine is driven cold, the Chrysler will begin to cough or stall, possibly miss or misfire. This cold engine driving can also cause the Chrysler to fail an emissions test because the emissions are not being processed properly. This can be seen on the temperature gauge on the instrument panel.

Sabtu, 08 Desember 2012

How to Decrease Fuel Pressure

How to Decrease Fuel Pressure

Excessive fuel pressure occurs with vehicles that use a carburetor. This forces fuel past the needle and seat assembly in the carburetor causing flooding. The needle and seat operates by filling the fuel bowl with fuel, when the float rises it pushes the needle valve into the seat causing a restriction in the fuel flow. Installing a pressure regulator will fix this problem.

Instructions

    1

    Find the rubber fuel hose that extends from the fuel pump to the carburaetor. Slice the fuel hose using a razor blade in a location that is safe to install the regulator.

    2

    Position the proper size hose fittings in either side of the pressure regulator, you will find these inside the kit.

    3

    Position a hose clamp on each side of the fuel hose. Secure the hose ends by pushing the fittings onto the regulator. The flow direction is shown with an arrow on the regulator which points in the direction of the carburetor.

    4

    Secure the hose clamps, affix the regulator for two pounds of pressure by pressing down on the knob in the middle of the regulator and position the pointer to the number "2." Start the vehicle and check for any leakage.

    5

    Take the vehicle for a test drive to ensure that there is enough pressure for the car to travel on the road. If the vehicle stalls put the pressure up by a half-pound until it stops stalling.

Jumat, 07 Desember 2012

Clutch Master Cylinder Symptoms

Clutch Master Cylinder Symptoms

A clutch master cylinder is a component found on most modern manual transmission systems. This component converts non-hydraulic pressure into hydraulic pressure. A failing clutch master cylinder can have significant effects on a transmission's performance, from maintaining speed to engaging the clutch.

Sticking Clutch

    The clutch master cylinder may develop leaks in its seals that create a pressure drop when the clutch is depressed. This may prevent the clutch from releasing. Leaks in the clutch master cylinder may also cause the clutch to engage early; for example, when the vehicle is attempting to accelerate from a stop, it may lurch suddenly as the transmission slips a gear and stalls out.

Soft Clutch Pedal

    A clutch pedal that is experiencing pressure problems due to a failing master cylinder may feel soft when it's depressed. A driver may notice the pedal showing less than normal resistance when attempting to shift gears. This problem can also be caused by leaks in the master cylinder's clutch slave cylinder attached to the clutch pedal along with the master cylinder.

Clutch Slipping

    A clutch that slips has difficulty maintaining gears. In a newly installed clutch this condition can be caused by a blocked master cylinder port. Blockages can occur from road particles fouling vehicle components or a fluid leak from another part of the vehicle finding its way into clutch components. Drivers may experience this as a spontaneous loss of speed when the vehicle is on the road or difficulty in accelerating from an idle position.