94 posts tagged with carrepair.
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Can a crankshaft break?

I think my mechanic is full of crap and I need a new one. Took my car in for an oil leak, after telling me I needed to pay 550 for a new seal, they're telling me crankshaft is 'broken' and it may be cheaper to get a new engine. [more inside]
posted by motioncityshakespeare on Oct 6, 2016 - 16 answers

What kind of bolt is this?

Corrosion worked its magic and I broke a couple of bolts while working on my car (FoMoCo). I cannot find replacements or even know the trade name of this type of bolt head. The threads are the same as a machine bolt/screw, but the head is narrow and long, flat, thin, and slides into a slot on the bottom of a plastic housing for a fuse/relay panel which then bolts through the fender liner. [more inside]
posted by hwyengr on Aug 12, 2016 - 14 answers

"We've thrown a rod", "Is that serious?", "Yep."

I have a 1998 Subaru Legacy Outback. I have what I suspect is a significant engine problem. I have data. I have a parts car. I could use some advice. [more inside]
posted by iconomicon on Aug 7, 2016 - 11 answers

I want to learn how to fix stuff in Seattle

I've decided I want to make better, more purposeful use of my downtime to get myself out of a rut. I'd like to take some ongoing (not one-off) classes in something that is engaging and practically useful. I'm feeling drawn to mechanical-type things, like learning how to do basic electrician stuff or auto repair. Any ideas? North Seattle would be ideal but I can travel.
posted by deus ex machina on Aug 1, 2016 - 5 answers

Key fob battery error as symptom of....what?

YANMM (You are not my mechanic), but my volvo has had key fob errors on and off for the last 3 weeks or so and I am wondering if it is something serious. [more inside]
posted by egk on May 13, 2016 - 3 answers

Broke guy needs car immediately

In dire need of a temporary car. Little money. Very little time. What are my options? [more inside]
posted by sureshot on Mar 14, 2016 - 23 answers

Clicking/Grinding while accelerating, 2003 Ford Windstar

I have a 2003 Ford Windstar (FWD, automatic) that after a trip up a switch backed mountain road has started making a clicking/grinding noise. The noise seems to come from front left, and only happens when stepping on the gas pretty good. For example, accelerating up grades, or trying to merge into traffic. In extreme cases, accompanying the clicking is some loss of acceleration, and a little bit of forward/back shuddering. Does not seem tied directly to RPMs, or any specific gear. How can I confirm what's broken? [more inside]
posted by Real.Wolf on Sep 19, 2015 - 4 answers

Is it time to put my '99 Honda Civic to pasture?

'99 Civic Four-Door. 101k miles. $2k in repairs over the past year. Now needs new O2 sensors and brake lines, coming to $850 or so. Should I stay or should I go? Snowflake details inside. [more inside]
posted by HeroZero on Jul 22, 2015 - 22 answers

Safe DIY seatbelt replacement? Difficulty level: pretensioner

Dog chewed partway through the seat belts on a 2000 Toyota Corolla. I got original Toyota replacement seat belts shipped from a salvage yard across the country. I know I can replace the belt assembly, but I'm wondering about the pretensioner. The replacement belts came with an intact pretensioner, with the wires cut off. Can I safely swap out the pretensioner connection? (that photo is of my exact replacement part). It's a yellow connector that seems held in place. What is it connected to? Can I just pull it out and shove my car's existing connector in? I'm planning to disconnect the battery before doing this work, but I know the pretensioner is an explosive device and I want to be cautious.
posted by reeddavid on May 3, 2015 - 5 answers

Prius: Replace, recondition, or junk?

My 2005 Toyota Prius (160K miles) recently had a check engine light. After taking it to a mechanic, it looks like the main battery in the car, the traction battery, has kicked it. Should I replace the car, replace the battery, or pay someone to fix the battery? [more inside]
posted by Vhanudux on Mar 17, 2015 - 11 answers

After leaving the mechanic, my car revs violently on cold starts. Why?

2005 Mitsubishi Eclipse. This never happened before I took the car in. Should/Can the shop fix this? [more inside]
posted by jander03 on Mar 3, 2015 - 12 answers

Advice on brighter car headlights?

I just replaced my 1995 300zx turbo's burned-out headlights with some cheap factory 9006 bulbs and can barely see anything at night. I don't want to get HIDs but would like to find a headlight that actually illuminates the road and makes driving safer. I've narrowed it down to three options: Philips X-treme Vision, Philips HIR2 9012, or Sylvania SilverStar Ultra (which I may rule out, because apparently they burn out really quickly). Does anyone have any advice on these, or any other suggestions? I do plan to clean out the headlights as well, if there's anything to clean out.
posted by roxie110 on Feb 25, 2015 - 6 answers

Car has been in the shop for 4 months. We just want it back.

Took our Subaru to the transmission shop recommended by the local Subaru mechanic. That was in October. It's still there, and we are at the end of our rope. [more inside]
posted by rabbitrabbit on Feb 6, 2015 - 11 answers

How would you handle this car repair problem?

My car was repaired for $2,000 in November. They took the engine apart. Today, they tell me the problem is a sensor. I'm out $2,000.00. Now, they want to also charge me for the sensor. How would you handle this? [more inside]
posted by clarkstonian on Feb 5, 2015 - 17 answers

Help me reset my car's computer in time for Saturday's emissions test

Of course my check-engine light comes on 4 days before the deadline to get my emissions tested. The issue got fixed yesterday, but they told me it could take up to a week to reset my car's computer--and if I got my emissions tested before it fully reset, I'd fail. Can I put my car through all the necessary paces in 3 days? [more inside]
posted by elizeh on Jan 29, 2015 - 11 answers

Are car dealerships really evil?

This question and its responses made me wonder if taking our car to the dealership for repairs is unwise. [more inside]
posted by Specklet on Jan 15, 2015 - 24 answers

Does Honda dealer repair warranty reciprocity exist?

Before I go down to my local Honda dealer service shop, I am curious to know if a warranty on repairs made at Dealer X are ever honored at Dealer Y? [more inside]
posted by SpringAquifer on Oct 13, 2014 - 5 answers

Somewhere to go, but how spiffed up should it be?

Is it worth making the investment of minor repairs on a 2011 Volvo XC90 AWD that's being traded in for a 2014 Mini Countryman S All4 when I already have a quoted range for the trade-in price from the Mini dealer? [more inside]
posted by dancinglamb on Jul 8, 2014 - 5 answers

What is this bolt that fell off the bottom of my '99 Honda Civic?

Driving home from work, my '99 Honda Civic suddenly got louder and, in addition, stared making a tinkling noise. I parked to look underneath and saw that there was a bolt dangling from the middle of the car. It's about 9 inches long, still has a nut on it, and was attached at the other end to a rubbery, possibly oval-shaped gasket sort of thing. Any ideas on a) what this is and b) how much I can reasonably expect to pay to get it fixed? [more inside]
posted by HeroZero on Jun 25, 2014 - 5 answers

Preferred by whom?

Should we use the insurance preferred auto repair shop? [more inside]
posted by BundleOfHers on May 15, 2014 - 8 answers

Resources for family in financial distress?

After some ups and mostly downs, my family thought we were finally going to get out of the dismal living situation we've been enduring for 2 years I spoke about in this anon question, but then life decided to completely derail, and I don't know what to do. Details inside. [more inside]
posted by assasinatdbeauty on Apr 21, 2014 - 36 answers

Fix the old car or get a new (to me) one?

My 1986 Toyota Celica ST has 156K miles, a broken timing belt, and a bunch of other issues. According to my mechanic, it has a non-interference engine, so there shouldn't be valve damage, but it is time to move on anyway? And if I get a new car, which one? [more inside]
posted by jcreigh on Apr 5, 2014 - 17 answers

Advice on seeking reimbursement from gas station for bad fuel?

Earlier this month, my 2007 Toyota Prius stalled right after a drive-through oil change (where you sit in your car while the work is done). I had it towed back to the oil place, and they checked and said no fluids were leaking and confirmed they'd used the right kind of oil. Then I had it towed to a Toyota body shop--it wouldn't go into neutral at that point, in case that's important--where the service dept. checked various things, drained the gasoline and refilled with new gas, then drove the car 10 miles with no problem. I have the receipt from the last place I bought gas (5 days before the oil change; a chain service station called Mapco Mart) and a receipt from the body shop saying the "fuel volatility [was] poor" which caused the stalling. I also have a receipt for the oil change showing what they did besides the change itself: they added windshield washer fluid and checked that brake lights, headlights, and wipers were working. Should I go to the gas station in person, or write to or call the company that owns it, or something else?
posted by homelystar on Mar 26, 2014 - 18 answers

Having some car trouble, could use some input

So my 2007 Honda Fit has been having these weird issues while at stop lights or stop signs and I can't figure out what's going on. [more inside]
posted by Modica on Feb 28, 2014 - 13 answers

1994 Toyota 4Runner with bad muffler/tailpipe – what to do?

My 1994 Toyota 4Runner (V6, RWD) has a bad muffler and/or tailpipe. It runs loud, but not undriveably loud. Today I took a good look under there for the first time since buying the truck (pictures within) and I would like some advice on the best and most cost-effective way to proceed. Bonus mystery switch question at end. [more inside]
posted by Scientist on Nov 12, 2013 - 15 answers

Wait... what?

I'm struggling to parse something that just happened between my car mechanic and I. What the hell happened? Is this a red flag? Am I being lied to or not told something, here? [more inside]
posted by Sara C. on Nov 2, 2013 - 18 answers

Someone randomly slashed one of my tires. Can I just replace the one?

I have already had installed and paid for one replacement tire, and just learned that replacing two is a fairly standard practice. Is that necessary and/or advisable? [more inside]
posted by vegartanipla on Sep 1, 2013 - 11 answers

Where can I learn the basics of car maintenance and repair?

I know next to nothing about cars beyond checking the oil and topping up windshield wash, but I'd really like to learn. I don't necessarily need to go full greasemonkey, but I'd like to be able to handle the basics and be an informed customer when I bring my car to the garage at the very least. I'd love to take a hands on course, if there are any in the Southern Alberta area, but book or website recommendations would also be quite welcome.
posted by peppermind on Aug 3, 2013 - 9 answers


I drive a 2004 Hyundai Elantra GLS. I don't know what happened but the muffler stopped working. Basically, my car started making more and more noise over a several weeks and I procrastinated taking it in, and then one day a couple of weeks ago it's like the muffler stopped working entirely. My car is now quite loud. My question is any idea what happened and how much it will cost to get it fixed?
posted by nooneyouknow on Jun 11, 2013 - 13 answers

Front passenger speaker and window switch broke but power lock didnt

The front passenger speaker and window control stopped working on my Ford Crown Victoria. The front passenger power lock switch is working fine. The window itself works normally and I can lower it from the driver side control panel. I had to take the whole dashboard apart earlier to replace a heater core so I unplugged a lot of wires. What did I miss when putting it back together? Where do I look?
posted by racecar on Mar 31, 2013 - 1 answer

How can I make $800 within the week?

My car broke down on me. Needs a new alternator, battery and wiring. It costs $800 to fix. How can I come up with the money? I have $0 to my name, 1 maxed out credit card, and no way to take out a payday loan because I just started a job 4 days ago after a lengthy unemployment. I can't borrow the money or bum rides from friends/family. I'm required to drive for my job and I'm in danger of losing it. I've also just started making new friends after years without them and now I can't drive to meet anyone anywhere. I'm worried my life is going to fall apart. I have one thing that I can sell for maybe $150. Are there ways to come up with the money I'm missing? I'm freaking out. Thank you.
posted by Pericardium on Jan 16, 2013 - 38 answers

Removing and replacing a car door seal

I have a 2002 Honda Civic and I want to remove the lower rubber seal on the front passenger door. Is there a way to do this without damaging it? [more inside]
posted by Estragon on Jan 12, 2013 - 4 answers

Subaru shakes

What could be causing the sudden steering wheel vibration/shake and sudden pulling to the right with my 96' AWD Subaru Legacy? [more inside]
posted by pilibeen on Dec 29, 2012 - 16 answers

I don't think duct tape is going to cut it this time.

After a theft, how much DIY car repair is too much? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Dec 21, 2012 - 11 answers

Where should I get my car's brakes checked?

I need my car's brakes looked at. Where should I have this done, and should I expect to pay for it? How much? [more inside]
posted by needs more cowbell on Sep 20, 2012 - 15 answers

How to at least break even on my broken car?

How do I sell a non-working car and potentially purchase another as economically as possible? [more inside]
posted by JackT on Aug 29, 2012 - 14 answers

How can I learn how to work on my new 30-year-old VW Rabbit (Diesel)?

Best shop manuals and online forums for vintage VW Diesel Rabbit owners? [more inside]
posted by seasparrow on Aug 17, 2012 - 6 answers

How much will fixing my car cost? Is it safe to drive?

My relative backed into my '09 Civic in the driveway. The front emblem and fender are bent; it appears that the radiator is bent as well. The car starts without problems. What am I looking at? Should I drive it into the shop, or have it towed? Relative doesn't have the wherewithal to fix this; should I make a claim against my own insurance?
posted by sonic meat machine on Aug 14, 2012 - 22 answers

I'd like to show you where I'm going with this...

The turn signals on my 2003 Volvo S60 only work once the car is fully warm. In addition, they then often work on the outside of the car without lighting the indicators on the dash. I really dislike not being able to signal in traffic and need this fixed. [more inside]
posted by vers on Aug 12, 2012 - 4 answers


I have a car with a tape deck and a CD player. I want to play my iDevice on it. I am thinking about going to a mechanic and having them install a radio with that component in it, or just adding a line out to plug into my device. [more inside]
posted by to sir with millipedes on Jul 10, 2012 - 21 answers

Cars Behaving Badly

What's wrong with my car? I have a 1996 Ford Explorer and I think I may have killed it last night. After a long hot drive back from the beach in traffic with a little kayak on the roof (relevant in case I overheated something maybe), I stopped to drop off friends at their apt., and when I went to restart it it made a funny choppy noise. I tried to turn it off but it wouldn't turn off completely, even after fully removing the key from the ignition. Smokey details inside... [more inside]
posted by newpotato on Jun 21, 2012 - 16 answers

How do I get my traction control fixed?

How do I convince the dealer to fix my car? Lonnnng explanation inside [more inside]
posted by clarkstonian on Jan 24, 2012 - 17 answers

Car Talk me.

Before I go back to the auto shop to get them to fix something they didn't get right the first time . . . maybe you can help? [more inside]
posted by liketitanic on Dec 21, 2011 - 4 answers

help me be a better car owner

I am a first time car owner, and I realized recently that I am not taking proper care of my car, nor do I know how to take proper care of my car. [more inside]
posted by insectosaurus on Nov 7, 2011 - 20 answers

How screwed am I?

How much am I about to pay a body shop? [more inside]
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish on Oct 27, 2011 - 12 answers

Help me be less ignorant about cars.

I would like to not feel panicky when things go wrong with my car. Where can I learn the basics of how cars work and how to troubleshoot them? [more inside]
posted by JDHarper on Aug 7, 2011 - 13 answers

Why would the A/C make my car accelerate rough?

Why does my car's air conditioner cause it to hesitate when accelerating? [more inside]
posted by breakin' the law on Jul 30, 2011 - 9 answers

Can I go back on a verbal agreement to have work done on my car without negative consequences?

Can (should) I ask my mechanic not to do a job we agreed they would do, after they've ordered the part? [more inside]
posted by ramenopres on Jun 20, 2011 - 10 answers

Plz help me get the best from GEICO.

A few nights ago a young woman, totally wasted, smacked into my pickup, which was parked on the street. Lots of damage. It's an old truck, it might be considered totaled, I'm not sure. My truck needs this, needs that, it's old, 200,000 miles, I'm not the best at keeping it maintained. Do I try to get money from her insurance to purchase a different truck? Because it's old and high miles, how do I keep from them telling me it's only worth this $$ but I can't replace it for what they offer -- I'd intended to drive this truck to at least 250,000 miles, I love the truck. Or if they repair it how do I demand they don't try to straighten out parts she smashed rather than replace with straight? The body of this truck was mint, never even dinged, it was the best thing about the truck. [more inside]
posted by dancestoblue on May 8, 2011 - 21 answers

Junk or repair 2008 high milage subaru with transmission failure?

My 2008 Subaru impreza's transmission needs to be replaced for $4-4.5K. The car has 107K miles on it, I communute 144 mi 5 days/week, and I got the timing belt and all breaks replaced two weeks ago. Should I junk the car or repair it? What other repairs can I expect in the next 100K miles? [more inside]
posted by gwen1234 on May 7, 2011 - 21 answers

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