Martha's car battery died this week and her neighbor suggested that she pour a can of Coke on it to clean off the corrosion. Martha is skeptical. Tom and Ray talk about this and other home remedies for batteries. Find out what works and what doesn't, right here.
Dear Car Talk
Betty's husband tore off the black plastic thingamajig that was hanging under the front end of their car, a Mercury Grand Marquis. Now she wonders if this was a great idea, given her husband's limited expertise on cars. What was this mystery part, and will they be sorry that it's gone?
Sara loves her cruise control, but her fiance thinks she uses it way too often. He worriest that overuse will wear out the car. Tom and Ray say that's nuts. Read here for their explanation of how cruise control works, and find out whether they think Sara should call off the engagement.
Jim's Maxima has been overheating when he travels to hot places. But his San Fransisco-based mechanics can't duplicate the problem because the weather is just too nice there. Tom and Ray recommend an auxiliary transmission cooler as a short-term fix.
Randy always wanted to get a camper for when he retires but now that the gas prices are high, he's thinking about sizing-down his vision to a small SUV. Find out why Tom and Ray say a mini-van is the ulitmate compromise vehicle, right here.
Cathy's son moved to Europe and left his 2001 Chrysler Sebring with his mother. Problem is, the engine imploded only a few weeks after his departure. They still owe a few payments on the car and now Cathy's not sure what to do with it once it's paid off. What will Tom and Ray reccomend?
Russ's taxi just blew its head gasket and he wants to know whether he missed any warning signals that could have prevented it. Tom and Ray say there were plenty of warning signals and want to know why Russ chose to ignore them all. Find out where Russ went wrong, right here.
Moon's Mitsubishi Lancer started squeaking when it rains, and now it squeals and whines all the time. Tom and Ray say she has two choices--either she can get it checked out, or she can just wait for the belt to break and fall off. Then she'll be able to enjoy the silence once again!
Rick, a self-identified geezer, has reached the age where he just wants to pay someone else to check his car's pressure and fluids for him. But he's had no luck finding a gas station that offers this service. Tom and Ray think these services are less important than they used to be.
Travis's Subaru was running hot, but he was almost to his destination so he kept driving. Then he drove home again.
Laura's husband wants to convert their pick-up truck to run on diesel to save on fuel costs, but Laura is skeptical that the cost of the project is worth it. Tom and Ray do some calculations to figure out when they can expect to start turning a profit on this big idea.
Tony was trying to save a buck by doing his own oil change and he accidentally drained the transmission fluid from his 2005 Toyota Sienna. And he was a few miles down the road before he realized his mistake. Now he wants to know what this boneheaded move is going to cost him.