The Top 10 Car Repair Problems

If you are someone who has ever attempted to repair your own car then you will no doubt have experienced just one of the thousands of problems that can occur when trying to fix a car. Should you be interested in finding out a few of the most common problems that occur when it comes to fixing a car then take a look at this list. You might think that some of them couldn’t possibly be in the top 10 but these are common knowledge within the industry and if you still don’t believe then all you need to do is ask a professional in your local garage.

10. Customized Nonstandard Add-Ons

Most of us are guilty of adding some add-on accessory such as a new radio, alarm system, satnav and even extra lights to our cars. This might be helpful to us and make our car look better but it can divert power from other systems or even in some cases cause power outages. These outages can be caused by incorrect installation and exposed wires that either come into contact with other wires or might have gotten damp at some point. If you want to install some add-on into your car and are not 100% sure of what you are doing we recommend taking it to the auto-shop and having an expert do it. As they say, better safe than sorry after all.

9. Gaskets

You wouldn’t believe how many times a gasket gets put on incorrectly. Not making sure that your gasket is not sitting properly can lead to reduced fuel efficiency in your car and a shorter life expectancy for the gasket also.

8. Ignition Coils

Ignition coils are an essential part of the ignition system that generates the spark that brings the engine to life. Repairing ignition coils can be a tricky business even if you have all the right tools. It is strongly recommended that if you have a problem with your ignition coils that you get the car to the garage and let an expert take a look at them.

7. Coolant Sensor

Defective coolant sensors can in the worst case scenario end up with a blown engine. Since there is no other way while on the road to tell how hot your engine really is the coolant sensor is one of the most important parts in the car. If your car starts leaking water you might not actually notice it and this is where the coolant sensor comes in. It will record the remaining fluids increasing ability to get rid of all that engine heat resulting in the temperature rising and you being alerted to something being wrong.
In most cases, a defective coolant sensor won’t lead to a catastrophe unless you are unlucky enough to spring a leak at the same time or have something else major go wrong. To ensure that this sensor is working properly you should have it checked in the auto shop to be on the safe side.

6. Exhaust Recirculation Valve

This value is an essential part of your car’s exhaust system and should it fail will not only cause your car’s engine to run inefficiently but will also result in your car’s emissions exceeding the levels set out by the government. This is an extremely common issue that often goes overlooked.

5. Spark Plugs

We have already seen how important the ignition coils are and spark plugs are no different. These are commonly regarded as being easy enough to replace on your own but in many modern cars they can be a nightmare to get to and may involve taking off many other components just to reach them.

4. Mass Air Flow Sensor.

This is another sensor that should it fail it could have potentially huge problems for the car. You can help to avoid this problem by frequently replacing the air filter to ensure that your cars air flow is always sufficient and free of dirt. The problem is that you can’t actually check the sensor yourself so you should get it regularly checked at your local auto shop who have all the specialist equipment needed to do so.

3. Catalytic Converter

The exhaust system in your car is one of those components like the tires and oil that will need regular changes throughout your cars life. The catalytic converter is part of this system and helps to remove some of the carbon from the tailpipe emissions. The degradation or failure of this system will cause your emissions to spike and if unrepaired cause your car to fail road safety testing. Fortunately, this problem can be detected at the garage in a second using an emissions probe. Regular maintenance will also help to avoid this problem.

2. Loose Fuel Caps

How many of us have gone to the gas station to refuel and only realized when we got to our destination that the fuel cap wasn’t put back properly. Many cars have sensors which trigger the engine lights to come on as a warning the cap is not closed. Driving with a loose fuel cap has a negative effect on fuel economy and also risks letting dirt get into your fuel tank which could end up clogging up your fuel line causing your engine to cut out.

1. Oxygen Sensors

With modern cars relying so heavily on electronics any sensor failure can have a big impact. Arguably the most important sensor to fail is the oxygen sensor as this will immediately have an impact on your car’s internal engine management system and effect how efficiently the engine is running. In the past, carburetors were calibrated for the best oxygen and fuel mixture while idling but this resulted in fuel efficiency that was nowhere near as good as when being micromanaged by an onboard computer. On certain model cars, these sensors are quite prone to failure which is why it’s defiantly worth heading to the garage to get it checked.

Well there you go, those are the top 10 repairs that have to be made to automobiles. If you experience any problem with your car the natural tendency is to let it go to see if it gets worse. This is more often than not a big mistake as it often leads to expensive parts wearing out and also other parts being caused to fail also. Just think of driving on a flat tire that could easily be repaired with a new inner tube. If you continue to drive the next thing to be ruined will by the tire itself and finally, the whole wheel, which to replace will cost you a fair bit of cash. So if in doubt bring it into your local auto shop to get it checked out as soon as you can.

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MotoGP: Is Passing in Moto2 So Hard to Understand?

I am now being led to believe that after all these years of riding and racing a motorcycle, I know little about the art of passing, on track or on highway. Well that is what happened when offering a comment on a blog yesterday about the Marquez/Luthi last lap pass in MotoGp, Moto2 race. But I did get some comments that see things like they are and were. So I thought I would offer up some common sense about passing in races. Let’s start by stating that Formula One race cars all have mirrors, motorcycles do not, and except for a rain light at the rear, no lights on either F1 or bikes, but the racing line does matter.

So across the line they come on the last lap with Marquez passing Luthi, Luthi being closest to the left side of the track headed to turn one and Marquez to his right. As the pass is made Marquez nears the turn, and the tip in point, but Luthi is still holding his position on Marquez’s left. Now I want to say at this point, Luthi, because he is staying to the left of Marquez, and is still, well the front wheel or part of it, holding that position meaning Marquez is not completely passed him. Marquez not able to see that, moves to the left slightly and that forces Luthi left and off the track.

Now this is where things get interesting. Because Luthi held that position, he blocked himself out of the tip in to the corner because Marquez was in the proper position. I do not understand Luthi’s thinking here. He should have got behind Marquez so as to have a chance at passing, but that is not what happened. Iannone and Espargaro went through and Luthi was left to fifth place. All this happened simply because Luthi kept himself along the left side of Marquez going into the tip in point. Again, I do not understand the thinking here.

But then because Luthi believed he was run off, or hit, let his temper get away on him, and did some beating of Marquez’s arm on the cool down lap.

Now the comments infer that Marquez acted in a dangerous manner, and used poor judgment in passing, but I do not think that was the case.

Look at this from a different point of view. Suppose Marquez stayed a straight line after passing or partically passing Luthi, where was Luthi going to go from that point? Where was Luthi going to tip into the corner? He positioned himself on the wrong side of Marquez. He needed to be to the right side of Marquez. So the little move to the left by Marquez means nothing in the end. Luthi, this was an error on your part leaving no one to blame but yourself.

To all those who blame Marquez for this because of what happened last year in Phillip Island, watch that video again. I ask, who was that rider in blue who was stopped on the racing line that caused that crash?

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The How to

Well, one way to learn something about riding on the street, or track, is to go to school. The school I chose, was the California Superbike School, as in the image. That slim fellow to the right is the owner of this school, and instructor as well. The list of riders who went on to win championships is long , Scott Russel being just one. They travel the US with the school, Barber being to closest to me at the moment, but I did my thing at Road America. I know there are many schools at many tracks these days, but not when I was scouting for one. Mr Keith Code has done a lot with this school, and I have only praise for this school. Levels 1 and 2 can be used by all bikes , but as I recall, level 3 is the sports bike area for the knee dragers. I think he once said, and I could be wrong, that there are 14 things you have to to corner a bike, and you have a second and a half to do them. Let that sink in for a while. There are of course, many schools, for different riding, and I will chat some about those, but I thought I would plug Keith a bit today. Tomorrow? who knows, but as always, be safe.

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Motocross Schools

I have been going through all the motocross schools that I had time for on the Internet, and have come to the conclusion that the best way to get schooling is from a Club, or from a pro rider who rides your track. It was and is the way I got my instruction on motocross, not that I ever won a lot of races, but I didn’t get hurt and had a great time racing. But most of the pro riders ride on the home track, and a lot of them do schools for a small fee. Helps them gather some money to cover expences for travel, and you get some great pointers on riding. The clubs take about the same route, but mostly, they have good people as members during the riding season to give instruction, rather than having to wait for the pro rider to come around. The only thing I would add to all that, would be to learn to ride in the mud. A mud race is the great equalizer. The good riders seem to fall back and the not so good riders get up to the front. And it does make for a great race, you know, bragging rights. There is a tire made just for mud too, some call it a paddle tire, but it does work great in the mud. And speaking of mud, the folks at Alpinestar are offering a new mud jacket, clear, so your jersey shows through. Ahem, wouldn’t want you to get dirty in a mud race now would we. I wonder if someone will come up with clear protectors for your bike. Never know whats coming next. So to sum it all up, clubs and home track pro guys seem the best route, no offence to the MX Schools out there. All are good. And I’m open to all comments about schools you might have. There is another way too, start on a 50cc, won’t be long before you get to the front, besides, I love watching parents chase those 50 kids around the track. It’s almost better than the race. Whatever way you do it, have fun and ride safe.

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