Show Rundown

#1119: "Shut Up, Hon"

Original Air Date: 05.07.2011
Show Open Topic

Tom and Ray share a letter from a listener, about what may just be the party to end all parties!

Call 1

Stuart Ake (, California) - 1986 Toyota Camry

A question about a noise. His car makes a 'metallic quacking' sound, from the right front wheel area. Noise changes with speed of car, and gets worse on turns. Mechanic said it was control arm, replaced, but noise got worse. Control arm was bogus--it's non-rotational. Problem is likely either a bad wheel bearing, stuck brake caliper, worn rotor, or bad tire. Go back to mechanic and get him to work on it again for free, since he blew it on the control arm.

Call 2

Liz Roberts (Bellingham, Washington) - 1998 Mazda Protege

A suspension and drivetrain question. The car pulls to the right when she makes a jackrabbit start, then straightens when she lets off the accelerator. Is something wrong? No, guys say front wheel drive cars do this, because of 'torque steer', to compensate for jack-rabbiting. Nothing wrong, but she shouldn't make jackrabbit starts.

Call 3

Robert Smith (Murfreesboro, Tennessee) - 1987 Buick Park Avenue

A starting question. It's dad's car. Someome told him to turn key to start position and hold it until he hears a click--that means fuel injection is warmed up, will make injectors last longer. Is that true? Tom and Ray say it's probably not, but it doesn't hurt, so might as well let Dad do it--if he stops, and anything breaks, Dad will blame Smiity and them.

Call 4

Jeff Mosenkis (, Illinois) - 1991 Mazda Protege

A transmission question. His transmission died. Is it worth fixing? Mechanic said it would cost $1500 for a used tranny, and that might be in as bad shape as his old one. Jeff is a grad student, and needs the car for research. Tom and Ray say that price is too high for used--for that money, he should be able to get a rebuild, with warranty. Shop around to other mechanics.

Call 5

Jim Slaby (Boston, Massachusetts) - Volvo

Jim's back for a round of stump the chumps. A question about heat. His heater is 'binary'--only full blast, blazing hot or nothing at all. Tom and Ray said it was a bad temperature control valve.

Call 6

Krista Halvorson (Chicago, Illinois) - 1994 Saturn SL

A heating and cooling question. Temperature gauge tends to get high, unless she turns on the AC. It's never overheated, but she thought turning on AC would make it hotter, not cooler. Something wrong? Tom and Ray say Saturns tend to do this--may be a TSB on it.

Call 7

Kelly Grieves (, Oregon) - 1997 Mitsubishi Mirage

A marital question about the clutch. She's wondering if her clutch is wearing out, and if she's causing it. Her husband says she shouldn't downshift to 1st until car is stopped, but she shifts when she gets below 10mph. Tom and Ray say clutch is wearing out, but just from normal use. She's not harming it--husband's theory is based on older clutches. Tell him to 'Shut up, hon'.

Call 8

Yusef Muhammed (Washington, District Of Columbia)

A marital question-- about fuel. His wife accused him of trying to kill her car by using a different brand of gasoline. Is this harmful? No, guys say all gas comes from pretty much the same place. Tell his wife to 'shut up, hon.'

Call 9

Bill Stein (Amherst, Massachusetts)

A question about a hot tub. Bill has an old-fashioned wooden hot tub that's leaking. Can he use radiator Stop Leak? No, not a good idea--radiators are made of metal, not wood, so it may damage tub. Also very expensive in the quantity Bill would need. Ray suggests putting a fiberglass liner in the tub.