Onofre's 1966 Ford Mustang starts fine but dies out whenever he shifts into gear. Tom and Ray diagnose a carburetor problem and offer some creative suggestions about how to find a mechanic with the right, er, qualifications to work on a carburetor.
Dear Car Talk
Aaron sold his dream car to a friend after he found out his fiancée didn't like it. Turns out the friend's wife doesn't like it either. Aaron wants to buy it back from his friend and beg forgiveness later. Can Tom and Ray steer him away from this unwise course of action, or is Aaron destined to be sleep in his Saab after his wife shows him the door?
Trudy went in to have her clutch adjusted but her mechanic said it wasn't possible on her 2007 Toyota Matrix. Tom and Ray explain that most new clutches are "self-adjusting". Find out more about these hydraulic, self-adjusting clutches right here.
Someone once told David never to turn on the Air Conditioner at highway speeds, and he's been faithfully following this advice for 40 years. Now he worries that he's got it all wrong. Can Tom and Ray explain what's really going on when you fire up the AC?
Elizabeth just moved to Tucson, AZ, and she wants to invest in a sunshade to protect her 1986 Buick Skylark from the hot desert sun. Her mother advises that they build a gazebo or a carport to protect it, while her husband votes for a "reflective cover thingy". Elizabeth wants Tom and Ray to cast the tie-breaking vote.
Steve was shocked to discover that his red Honda del Sol is a "chick car". Can Tom and Ray convince him to be secure enough in his masculinity to face the (adorable) facts about this car? Plus Tom shares one of the lesser-known benefits for men who drive "chick" cars. Find out why Tom and Ray think Steve should drive his del Sol with pride, right here.
Bryony was driving to her job on an Air Force base when the troops manning the gate accidentaly raised the security barrier and damaged her car. She's worried that this bent the frame. Tom and Ray answer her question and have some bonus advice for Bryony about how to make her future dealings with Air Force security go more smoothly.
Ed's wondering about brake jobs--how do you know whether to replace the rotors, pads or both? Tom and Ray cover all the bases in their reply, starting with the history of brake pad materials, what's used most often in modern cars, and even make a prediction about the future of used brake rotors.
Fred thinks his brother-in-law's constant headlight use is dangerous and annoying to other drivers, not to mention destroying his gas mileage. Not ones to pass up on a brotherly dispute, Tom and Ray jump into the fray. Should Fred back down, or will Tom and Ray give him the green light to keep hassling his poor brother-in-law?
Tom's wife ran over a tree limb (no, not that Tom!) after it fell off a truck right in front of her. The car was undamaged except for the black plastic part under the front bumper, which had to be removed. Tom's question: what the heck was that thing, and is it important? Find out what the brothers Magliozzi have to say on the subject of chin spoilers, right here.
Richard's son drives too fast. With speeding tickets, fast starts and sudden braking, Richard is worried that he may be doing permanent damage to the car. Tom and Ray agree, but will they help him out? After all, they need customers like Richard's son--how else could mechanics make their boat payments each month?