Show Rundown

#1036: The Lovelorn Mechanic

Original Air Date: 09.04.2010
Show Open Topic

Fan Mail from a Captive Listener.

Call 1

Elizabeth Zarkin (Richmond, Virginia)

An A/C question. It only works when she doesn't need it! Gets plenty of cold air when temp is around 70, but not when it gets to 90. Tom and Ray says she's likely just low on refrigerant--should be an easy fix.

Call 2

Tricia Russell (Louisville, Kentucky)

An accident/relationship question. She started dating this guy--they were driving each other's cars, she rear-ended him. Ended the romance, now he wants her to pay his $500 deductible. Should she? Tom and Ray say she should send him the $500 and be glad she's done with him. She benefited by seeing his true nature early in the relationship.

Call 3

Andy (Los Angeles, California)

A question about buying-- and heat. Looking for a new car. He, his wife, and a friend all have different theories about what combination light and dark exterior and interior colors will keep a car coolest in the sun on a hot day. All three of them have different theories. Tom and Ray say all three are wrong--but don't have a definitive answer. Suggest Andy experiment by going to Acura dealer and sitting in different color cars.

Call 4

Travis Keller (Washington, District Of Columbia)

A question about brakes. He bought car used, had a high pitched squeal noise when he'd step on brakes. Noise went away, wife and friends said this was a bad sign. True? Yes, the noise he was heating was likely the wear sensor, telling him it's time to replace the brakes. When the noise goes away, the brakes are really almost gone--so get them checked/replaced ASAP.

Call 5

Marion Rosenbaum (, New York)

An electrical question. She has problems starting car on rainy days. Thought it had something to do with rear defogger switch. Tom and Ray said defogger was a red herring, and she likely needed a new starter motor. She went to mechanic, who agreed that it wasn't the defogger, but found a short in the headlight--when he fixed that, the starting problem went away.

Call 6

Ginny (Minneapolis, Minnesota)

Driving/martial. After rain, lots of frogs come on he road, and she and her husband disagree on how to avoid hitting them. She says it's best to go slow and steer around them, husband says to drive as fast as possible. Given the frog volume, Tom and Ray agree with her--go slow.

Call 7

Julia Davis (Boise, Idaho)

A fuel question. She can only get a gallon or two of gas in tank before the gas pump clicks off. Happens at every station. Problem is in evaporator system--tank isn't burping properly. Easy fix.

Call 8

Mike Montgomery (Jacksonville, Missouri)

A transmission question. First transmissiom lasted 176,000 miles. Since then, he's had to replace two, very quickly. Mechanic says engine is getting stronger as truck gets older, and is now too strong for the transmission. T&R say this is bogus--mechanic may be using bad rebuilt trannys.

Call 9

Patty Worley (, Virginia)

A relationship question about her mechanic. Her mechanic has a crush on her, and flirts when she brings her car in. She's married and it makes her uncomfortable. But, he does good work--how can she keep him as her mechanic, but make him stop hitting on her? Tom and Ray say she needs to be honest--say he's making her uncomfortable, and she may have to stop bringing the car to him.