Show Rundown

#1022: You Shoulda Locked Him in the Cellar!

Original Air Date: 05.29.2010
Show Open Topic

Atrocious opening sentences, courtesy of the Bulwer-Lytton Awards.

Call 1

Linda Fleiner (Apple Valley, Minnesota)

A questions about brakes. The quickie oil change, kid put wrong fluid in brake system. A different place said they need to replace whole brake system, $1400. Mechanic said just flush it and replace master cylinder, should be okay. Worried car isn't safe. Tom and Ray say she may as well get everything replaced, but make the first oil change place pay for it. Take them to court, if necessary.

Call 2

Pete Cadmus (Fort Collins, Colorado)

A suspension question. He wa told he needs new springs and shocks. He's cheap, wonders if he really needs to for safety. Also, he carries a hang glider, aonders if that's killing the car. Yes, he needs to replace them--his tires could be losing contact with the road, not safe. But, he's probably not killing the car with the hang glider.

Call 3

Kristin Rutherford (Acton, Massachusetts)

A fuel question. Whenever she fills it up with gas it won't start--cranks, but stalls out. Only happens first time, after a fill-up. Ray thinks it's more related to the time the car is shut off than to gas--the coolant temp sensor is sending a bad signal when car is partially warmed up. Also could be gas getting into evap cannister. Experiment--go to gas station, don't get gas, just shut off engine for five minutes and try to re-start.

Call 4

Mark Silver (, California)

An engine question. Big black puff of smoke when he starts it, rattles, then runs fine. Classic case of leaky fuel injectors. May need to replace at least one, if not all injectors to fix it--if it doesn't get worse, he can ignore it.

Call 5

Beth Raz (, Montana)

A question about brakes. She just had brake shoes and pads replaced, now hears flapping noise from rear when she steps on the brakes--noise is in sync with tire rotation, only when she steps on the brakes. Ray thinks guys who did brake job warped the drums--easy to do on this car. Can try machining out the warp, or replace the drums.

Call 6

Chris Hiester (, Pennsylvania)

A driving question. Dad used to rev the engine five times before shutting it off--said it cleaned carbon off the tips. Was he crazy? Not really crazy--older cars were more finicky, people often did weird stuff to make sure they'd start next time. But revving engine isn't good for it, and thins is completely unnecessary on modern cars.

Call 7

Rick Mroz (Boca Raton, Florida)

A steering question. It's his son's truck, and his son likes to use it for 'mud bogging.' Power steering doesn't work to the right--can force the wheel, but no power steering. Works fine to the left. Tom and Ray think it's a broken steering box, needs to replace it.

Call 8

Heidi Kuvalova (, Michigan)

An engine question. It needs new timing belt, husband's a tennis pro who doesn't speak much English, wants to do it himself. Should she let him? Tom and Ray said to lock him in the cellar--do anything to keep him from doing it. That just made him want to do it more. Did the timing belt okay, but left garage door closed with engine running, so he almost passed out. Also, he didn't do the water pump, which will likely need replacing now. She says the guys were right.

Call 9

Nancy Terrio (Hartland, Vermont)

A buying question. She's moving to Belize with her family. Looking for a car to drive down in, and use there. She saw lots of Toyotas when they visited. She's thinking an old 4-Runner or Nissan Pathfinder, husband wants a Blazer. Guys say go with the Toyota--it'll be easier to find parts, since there are more of them there, and they'll need fewer parts because it's more reliable. Also, drive carefully, especially on unimproved roads.