Show Rundown

#1121: Pranks, Painting & Personal Problems

Original Air Date: 05.21.2011
Show Open Topic

Tom and Ray share a list of signs that your guy might not be all that handy, after all.

Call 1

Linda (Plymouth, New Hampshire)

They lost the oil cap and they can hear it rattling around in the engine whenever they start the truck up or go around a corner. But, they can't find it! Do they have a problem? It might be stuck behind the water pump pulley. Eventually it will fall out, or get ground up. Worst case, it will flip off the serpentine belt. Take off the serpentine belt, spin everything, and listen for the sound of the oil cap.

Call 2

Brandon Butler (Tacoma Park, Maryland)

What's the best way to jump a Prius, and is it possible to ruin the car if you do it wrong? He's heard horror stories that you can fry the battery that runs the computer if you jump start it with a car. He's never successfully jumped it with a car, but when AAA comes with one of those boxes it works. Does he need to get one of those? He should get his own jump pack. There's nothing unusual about jump starting this car. The same concerns as a conventional car apply about jump starting a car.

Call 3

Faye Menken (New York, New York)

Is there a way that a young woman should dress so that when she goes to get work done on her car she will be taken seriously and not be ripped off? Her daughter recently took her car into a tire store to have her snow tires removed and she was almost ripped off. Try a power suit, or go for combat boots and a nose ring. Try leaving a policeman's uniform in the car.

Call 4

Barb Schultz (Bremerton, Washington)

She loves the car, the only problem is she can't see when she backs up. She's hit 3 different things with the back left panel. What kind of car should she get that she can see out the back window (also, that has good gas mileage and she can drive grandma around in)? Ray thinks she can retrofit her current car from a backup camera. Or she can buy a car with a back-up camera and the beeping warning device, like a Hyundai Elantra.

Call 5

Russell Mendez (Frankfurt, Kentucky)

The problem is the driver's door: the handle on the outside is broken, as is the handle on the inside. He can't open the door. He thinks he needs to open the door in order to fix it. How can he open the door without any handles? He may have to cut a hole in the door panel. Take a Sawzall to it. If that doesn't work, go at it from the outside.

Call 6

Betsy (St James, New York)

It's a piece of junk in her mind but her husband loves it and wants to take it on one last big trip. They're planning on driving it across country to Portland, Oregon to attend their grandson's high school graduation (he actually got into Harvard). Are they going to be able to make it? They've never gone across country and they'll be celebrating their 50th anniversary as they do so. It's been checked out at the Lexus dealer. Something could still fail, but she should go for it. Leave a few extra days, in case they break down.

Call 7

Ben (Brooklyn, New York)

He and his wife got the car because they used to drive a manual Honda civic but his wife can't drive stick. Now, every time he stops at a light he automatically puts the car in park because he's driven stick shifts his entire life. Occasionally when he shifts from park to drive it sticks and he can't get back into drive. Is this happening because he puts the car in park at lights? His wife thinks he's crazy and goes nuts every time he does it. Is putting the car in park at red lights bad for the car? He might wear out some components, over a long period of time. Overall, though, he should not worry about it. Be sure to step on the brake firmly, when shifting out of park. He should try to get over it, if only because it annoys his wife.

Call 8

Rise (, Iowa)

She let the car sit for 8 months without driving it and right before she left it, she had the clutch replaced. Now, the clutch plate seems to have rusted stuck to the clutch. How can she get it apart? She needs to break the rust bond. Try accelerating it against a tree, without crashing into it, of course. Or, leave it in first gear, and try starting it a few times. A mechanic could always take it apart, but it's going to cost hundreds of dollars.

Call 9

Todd (Thief River Falls, Minnesota)

He has a cosmetic car question: for some reason, random panels of his car are experiencing either color changes or increased oxidation. His door is turning light pinkish; another door is turning really red; some of his black trim is fading to gray. Is there a cheap easy way to take care of this? There are lots of places that will paint it fairly inexpensively. Or, paint your car using rollers-there's a site on the Internet that explains how to do it.