What the hell's going on with my car?
August 23, 2006 10:59 AM Subscribe
CarRepairFilter: Help me figure out what's going on with my usually well-behaved car, and what, if anything, it might have to do with a letter I got from Acura back in January...
posted by Vervain to travel & transportation (11 answers total)
Basically, it looks like Acura made a deal with the EPA because the onboard computer in some of the '95-'97 models is not CA-emission-compatible. As a result, they're replacing (for free) the spark plugs, ignition wires, distributor cap/rotor on qualified cars with 75,000-150,000 miles.
As for my car: it's a '96 Integra, with about 140,000 miles. I'd say I put less than 10,000 miles a year on it, since I don't have much of a commute. I've been searching for a new mechanic for awhile, since the place I'd been going to went downhill fast. As a result, the car hasn't really been looked at in about a year.
There's definitely something up with the brakes, and I think the old mechanics might've had something to do with that; last time I was in, they made some comment about the back brakes being "20% on one side, and (less) on the other". For the record, their fix might've evened it out, but it also made the brakes very spongy. Right now they're very grabby, almost pulsing, and there's a ticking noise from the back brakes when I'm slowing down. This goes away when I apply more pressure to the brake pedal.
In addition to that, I think the clutch may be starting to go. But I could be wrong--this is my first standard-transmission vehicle, so I don't know what to look for. Over the past few days, the engine has been running rougher for a few seconds after upshifting, eventually kicking into a smoother ride. But it's only while accelerating; downshifting seems to be just as peachy as ever.
Long story short, I know I've neglected the poor thing and that I'm going to be dropping some money on car repairs in addition to the free fixes the letter mentions, but that's about all I know. (I'm not mechanically inclined.) Can you give me an idea of what might be going on, so I know what to ask about when I take it in?