Show Rundown

#1240: The Forget-A-Key

Original Air Date: 10.06.2012
Show Open Topic

How do you know if you're Italian? Well...

Call 1

Barb (St Louis, Missouri) - 1992 Mitsubishi Expo

Barb is having trouble shifting her manual transmission. She can’t get it into third, so she usually keeps it in first and often struggles shifting through all the gears, even when not moving. Good news--the problem is likely outside the transmission, in the shift linkage. Could by a worn bushing or stretched cable.

Call 2

Jose (Chicago, Illinois) - 1994 Subaru Legacy

Jose thinks his valve cover is leaking oil. He’s an MIT grad, and is wondering if he can fix this himself. Tom and Ray think the problem is more likely in the camshaft seal, which is behind the timing belt--but he can try taking the valve cover off to check. It’s not too difficult a job, and even if it doesn’t fix the problem it may give him more confidence.

Call 3

Sarah Braswell (Anchorage, Alaska) - 1995 Toyota Tacoma

Sarah’s having an intermitten heating problem, and needs to get through one more Alaska winter. The heater works at random times--it blows cold air, then she hears a “shoom” noise, and heat starts. The temp lever operates, and all the fan speeds work. The problem is in the heater control valve--it’s not allowing one or more blend doors to open to let heat in. Get someone to look under the dash to see what’s not moving when she adjusts the temperature lever.

Call 4

Christine Pacold (, Indiana) - 1999 Toyota Camry

Christine loves her car, but regularly locks her keys inside, and has to jimmy the lock. She’s a medical school student--Tom and Ray hope she’s not leaving instruments in patients.They suggest she attach a Hide-A-Key to the car somewhere, or carry an extra key in her purse, or make copies of her key for all her classmates.

Call 5

Shawn Frisbee (, Connecticut) - 2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Shawn’s having brake issues. When he comes to a stop at high speed, the steering column vibrates, and the brake pedal pulsates. He doesn’t think it’s happening when he brakes from a slower speed. Tom and Ray think it is happening at slower speeds--just less dramatic, so he’s not noticing. He’s got warped disc rotors, and needs to get them fixed because this could get dangerous.

Call 6

Julie Perkins (, New York) - 1995 Honda Civic

Julie is wondering why she needs to turn on the AC to defog her car, and how cars without AC get defogged. The answer is--you don’t need AC, but it helps, by removing the moisture that’s causing the fogging. What’s more important is to bring in outside air, rather than recirculated.

Call 7

Ed Campbell (Johnson City, Tennessee) - 1993 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Ed’s Jeep has three problems which nobody can diagnose. It pings and makes a horrible knocking sound if he uses regular gas, he sees blue smoke, and the oil pressure gauge will drop from 50 to 30 after he’s been driving at high speed. Ray thinks the problem is excessive high engine temperature--explains the ping and oil pressure. Blue smoke can be a separate problem--an oil leak somewhere. Tom and Ray suggest he try a lower temp thermostat to experiment.

Call 8

Judy Solomon (, Illinois) - Toyota Corolla

Judy and her husband are buying a new Corolla. They agree on everything but the color. One thinks a whiter car is safer than a darker car. The other prefers dark for aesthetic reasons. Tom and Ray side with the lighter car--they are more visible, and hence, a bit safer. It’s also easier to keep a white car clean.

Call 9

Dickie Segura (New Iberia, Louisiana) - Lexus

Dickie called because water was shooting out of the steering column of his girlfriend’s Lexus. He also needed counseling on the age difference between him and his girlfriend.Tom and Ray said the water was coming from underneath the car, and making its way up. Right Answer! The relationship ended, though.