Noises can be listen hard!

Dear Car Talk

Dear Car Talk | Jul 01, 1991

Dear Tom and Ray:

At our house, we drive an '89 Ford Tempo. It's a great car, except that in the last few months, it continually makes a sound kind of like water boiling. We took it to a garage and they put in a new muffler. It still percolated. They tightened a loose air pump, but it still perked! Any advice other than to try a new garage?

RAY: Well, we are going to suggest you try a new garage, Alice. Even though noises can be elusive, it's almost always possible to find them if you listen hard enough.

TOM: And the first thing we'd do if you came into our shop (after we obtained your full credit history, of course) would be to try to determine whether the noise was coming from the engine itself, or from one of the "accessories," like the air pump or water pump. And the easiest way to do that is to remove the belts one at a time.

RAY: For instance, the noise could be coming from your water pump. If we removed the belt that runs the water pump, and the noise went away--bingo!

TOM: We're just not convinced that the guys who worked on your car are trying hard enough. If the noise is there all the time, they really should have been able to locate it before they started charging you for parts.

RAY: So my guess is that one of two things is happening. Either they don't want to take the time to diagnose your problem correctly. Or they're trying to reduce their inventory of Ford parts. Either way, I think you're better off going somewhere else.

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