Show Rundown

#1221: The Steve Revolution

Original Air Date: 05.26.2012
Show Open Topic

You can get shoes for 85 cents at a bowling alley, and other great pearls of wisdom.

Call 1

Anna Mendez (Franklin, West Virginia) - 1998 Volvo V70

Anna’s Volvo will only start if it’s facing downhill. The rest of the time, the engine cranks but it just won’t start. If she pulls the key out and tries a second time, it starts. Facing downhill, it always starts on the first try. Tom and Ray think it’s fuel-pump related-- it may not be making proper contact unless the car is at an angle, or may just be worn out. Suggest she contact a Volvo dealer. After call, Ray considers that it may be a faulty ignition switch.

Call 2

Steve Weland (Milwaukee, Wisconsin) - 1998 Honda CR-V

Steve plans to trade his car in. But, after a recent storm, he noticed a puddle of water on the floor. He’s wondering if he needs to fix it before selling, or tell the dealer about it. Ray says the ethical thing is to disclose it--and that if people like Steve are more honest, it could change the entire used-car culture, and make dealers more honest. Tom thinks Ray is nuts, but agrees that fixing/disclosing is probably the right thing to do,.

Call 3

Joe Farina (Toledo, Ohio) - 2000 Chrysler Cirrus

When Joe’s engine is cold and he starts the car, the steering wheel pulses and jerks- it's hard to steer. After about five minutes, it’s fine. Tom and Ray say it could be a slipping or worn out belt or power steering pump. Worst-case scenario is that it’s a worn out rack and pinion but that’s unlikely.

Call 4

Michelle Blair (Oakland, California) - 1999 Honda Accord

When the car is cold, and Michelle first starts it, the gas pedal moves about 1/4”, then sticks and she has to push harder, and the car jerks. After a couple of minutes, it’s fine. The problem is a throttle plate is sticking. Could just be “120,000 miles of crud," and throttle body cleaning would fix it. Or, throttle body could be worn out and needs to be replaced.

Call 5

Raymond Zent (, Utah) - 1994 Chevrolet Lumina

Raymond heard a grinding noise when he turned his blower above"low." Sounded like a chicken bone caught in a fan. Tom and Ray said a blade of the blower motor had broken and was hitting the cage--would need a new blower motor. Raymond discovered the entire blower had broken off.

Call 6

Leo Santamarina (, Pennsylvania) - Chrysler Town & Country

Leo likes to keep his car running while pumping gas--mostly in colder weather, to keep the car warm. His wife says this is dangerous, and is concerned the car will blow up. Will it blow up? No, but it’s a bad idea, and illegal in most states--the real danger is that if the car is running, it’s easier for it to drive off with the pump still in it, and spray gas all over the place.

Call 7

Dan (, New Hampshire)

Dan has an auto-marital theory: that people who drive their cars over 100,000 miles stay married longer. People in his family bear this out. He has over 200k, married 18 years. Brothers who trade cars every year are divorced. Do the guys agree? They do--it shows a willingness to stick through adversity.

Call 8

Rebecca Smith (, South Carolina) - 2002 Ford Escape

When Rebecca turns her fan on, her eyes burn and itch for the first few minutes--she thinks it’s likely pollen getting into the car, but isn’t sure how, and is wondering if she can stop it. Pollen is likely coming through the cowel, but she could also have mold in there. She can try spraying Frigi-Fresh into the vents.

Call 9

Sam Washco (Scranton, Pennsylvania) - 2001 Volkswagen Beetle

Sam’s recently retired Dad has taken to working on Sam’s Mom’s Beetle. He’s wreaking havoc--leaks have developed, and he killed the battery while listening to polka tapes. How can Sam stop him? He probably can’t--and if he stops Dad from working on the car, he may start tryin to rewire the house, which would be really bad. Get Dad the shop manual, and let him enjoy his retirement--but don’t let Mom drive the car unless a real mechanic looks at it.