#1115: Caller Intimidation

Apr 09, 2011
This week on Car Talk, Tom and Ray discover a new strategy for handling "difficult" callers--brow beat them mercilessly until they agree to symptoms that'll fit a diagnosis. The test case is Laraine in St. Louis, and her noisy Acura. Elsewhere, Larry and his wife are arguing over whether buying a used rental car mean inheriting dozens of drivers' bad habits; David in Colorado's MG is acting sluggish but Dave may have to solve Tom's MG problems before getting any advice; and Amy in California's been warned to change the timing belt on her Safari. The only problem? The car doesn't have one. All this, plus a few choice newspaper headlines, the most creative engine removal of all time, and lots more, this week on Car Talk.

Show Open Topic

Tom and Ray share a few amusing headlines.

This Week's Puzzler

Just whose fault was the traffic accident? See if you can unravel the answer from Ray's clues.

Last Week's Puzzler

Tommy's Fiat drives 225 miles at 45 mph. It has a 15-gallon tank (that leaks!) and gets 30 mpg. How many gallons per hour was the car leaking fuel? See if you got it right!

As Read on Car Talk


Show Review - 1581

Favorite Moment: 

The 88 Legend of Loraine, misdiagnosed

Loraine's Legend has a leaking ABS master cylinder. When the pressure in the resevour drops, a pump runs ( the noise she hears ) to restore the pressure. The show was great as usual, despite the stumping of the ... well you know.
Favorite Moment: 
The start of the show. Least favorite moment... the end, when I have to go mow my lawn.

Jetta Turn indicator

Jettas & Passats have open-frame turn indicator switches, and they fill with crap causing them to do what your caller stated: blink furiously for no reason. The switch can be replaced for big $$, or one can buy a $5 can of contact cleaner and spray the dickens out of it from around the stem base on the column. It will fix it for awhile, until it's time to spray again. Changing the relay (behind a removable plastic panel on the dash) has no effect.
Favorite Moment: 

I love you guys!

Due to unfortunate circumstances, my husband and I have to get up and drive at 9 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday mornings. We are only gone for a few minutes, but sometimes spend 30-40 minutes in the car. The thing is, your show airs during that time period, and it has become something I look forward to each week. Thank you for your ridiculous humor, your somewhat helpful car knowledge, and your puzzler. It has provided us with pleasant weekend mornings. I didn't think there was such a thing. Now, if you could only air a different show on Sunday.
Favorite Moment: 
The story about driving the rental car through the tunnel and causing a backfire so strong the muffler fell off the car. We laughed and laughed and it prompted a hilarious exchange of similar stories between us!

Over the years

I've been listening to Car Talk since I was a little girl. I can remember my dad playing it on the radio of our 90's Chrysler Town and Country, wood panels and all! I must have been about 5 years old and I've continued listening for 19 years. I still enjoy every episode! Kudos!
Favorite Moment: 
Every time I've laughed along, which is several times per show.

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