HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
Comments
View Comments: Newest First|Oldest First|Threaded View
Page 1/3  >  >>
Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Group knowledge
Ann R. Thryft   11/6/2012 2:40:51 PM
NO RATINGS
Tool_maker, we're inclined to use your rule. But since the car has 190,000 miles on it, there's a reasonable possibility that something actually is wrong with the engine. That's why we're contemplating spending more than $0.00.

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Group knowledge
Ann R. Thryft   11/6/2012 11:54:22 AM
NO RATINGS
rickgtoc, thanks for your detailed feedback. We've thought of going into the local chain store to get the code(s) read, but once you turn the engine off a time or two, the codes disappear. Your suggestions of how to DIY capturing them look intriguing. Otherwise, we have to be already at the store to catch it when it serendipitously happens. Since we're about 30 minutes away from the closest of one of those stores (we *live* in South Nowhere), this presents some logistical problems.

Braditude
User Rank
Iron
Re: Group knowledge
Braditude   11/5/2012 12:51:31 PM
NO RATINGS
I had a similar problem with a 87 Nissan Maxima.

It was only 3 years old when I purchased it.

It started to run rough, and not having time to look for the problem, I had my wife take it into the Nissan dealer to have it fixed.

The technician told her it had a bad injector, and needed to replace it, and to do it right, he wanted to replace all of the injectors at a price of $600 plus labor!

I told her no, and to bring the car back.

I played with the car for about a 1/2 hour and found that the only problem was a bad connection on the injector, sprayed contact cleaner on all injector plugs, wiggled and replaceed them and the car ran fine from then on!

It pays to know and analyze instead of letting an amateur do it, as I called the Nissan dealer back and talked to the service manager and told him what I found.

I have not taken any of my cars back to a dealer since.


BH

Tool_maker
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Group knowledge
Tool_maker   11/1/2012 4:53:52 PM
NO RATINGS
Ann: your story almost duplicates our experience with my wife's 96 Blazer. A "Service Engine" light comes and goes, sometimes for weeks at a time. I have had it in numerous garages with no change, so have adopted this rule. If the oil pressure is where it belongs and the temperature gauge is okay, forget it. So far that has worked and it is free.

rickgtoc
User Rank
Gold
Re: Group knowledge
rickgtoc   11/1/2012 3:56:22 PM
NO RATINGS
If the Honda is not too old, it has an OBD II connector under the dash near the steering wheel (some '94 &'95 cars,all '96 and later).  Big chain parts stores in my area will read those codes for free using their code reader, which may or may not help you, given the intermittent nature of the trouble light.  If it doesn't show up on the parts store's reader, you could buy a bluetooth enabled dongle to read those codes and transmit them to a smart phone using a free or low cost app.  Then you could leave the dongle attached and run the monitoring app while operating the car and see what codes, if any, the car's computer posts when the Check Engine light comes on.  It's not a cure-all, since the  diagnostic codes are sometimes misleading or point to something that's a long way from root cause, but it's an inexpensive thing to try.  And you can use the app to reset the diagnostic codes once you have effected a repair.  I bought a dongle for about $20 online, and I'm using the free version of an Android app to translate the signals.  In addition to diagnostic codes, the app generates all kinds of related stats, incluing RPM, fuel economy, speed, acceleration (using the phone's accelerometer, I believe).  But safety first -- let someone else drive while you look at all the goodies the phone spits out.

I originally took my Tacoma to a parts store and had them use their code reader when my check engine light came on -- O2 sensor.  I bought the dongle to reset the codes after I replaced the O2 sensor, and to let me read the diagnostic codes should the light come on when I'm on the road in South Nowhere out of range of an open mechanic or parts store.  I just put the dongle in a bag behind the seat to have it available when needed.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Good idea
Rob Spiegel   11/1/2012 12:30:38 PM
NO RATINGS
Jmiller, I agree it is easier to just let someone else fix it. But it's more satisfying to figure it out and fix it yourself. Plus, the price was right.

jmiller
User Rank
Platinum
Good idea
jmiller   10/30/2012 10:06:32 PM
NO RATINGS
I love it when a little enginuity and hard work save a lot of money.  I just wish I was a little better at that sort of thing and had the patience to do it.  Quite often I fall into that trap of thinking it's just easier to pay and have someone else do it.

Tim
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Group knowledge
Tim   10/30/2012 7:29:31 PM
NO RATINGS
In 2004, we had a need for a minivan.  Looking at the local used car lots, we found a 99 Toyota Sienna at a fantastic price.  The vehicle was old, but it was low in mileage.  To be safe, we checked the Carfax on the vehicle, and it showed no issues.  We also ran a google search for the 99 Sienna and found that a significant amount of that model year had problems with oil sludge buildup and catastrophic engine failure associated with no oil flow.  With that knowledge, we knew why the deal was too good to be true.  The dealer was most likely sitting on the vehicle for a while and needed to move it.  We passed and bought a Ford instead.  125k miles later, we bought a brand new Sienna that had no sludge related issues reported.

Scott Orlosky
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Group knowledge
Scott Orlosky   10/30/2012 11:09:32 AM
NO RATINGS
Tim.  I couldn't agree more.  The real power of the Internet is the shared collective knowledge base of the civilized world is at your disposal.  It's my first stop for just about any problem these days.  Of course I can still tackle things the "old fashoined" way by just disassembling stuff until I find the problem - if I have to.

tekochip
User Rank
Platinum
Mystery Light
tekochip   10/30/2012 9:04:39 AM
NO RATINGS
I had a `98 Explorer a few years ago, when it seems that everyone did.  Anyway,
the vehicle began to run poorly and then a light appeared on the dash.  It was
one of those icon lights that looked like a fuel pump, but the cute little
pump had small drops of rain falling on it.  I had never seen the icon before,
not even when starting the car, so I was really confused.  Just the same, the
icon suggested water in the fuel, and the car was acting like it had water in
the fuel.  I stopped at a gas station where the vehicle struggled to idle and
threw in a can deicer.  Almost instantly the combustion smoothed out and I made
it back home.  I went through the manual and couldn't find the rainy fuel pump
icon anywhere.  I drove to the dealer and asked them about it, but they said
there was no such thing.  I took a flashlight and lit up the dash where you
could see the little rainy fuel pump icon, the service people were astonished to
see the icon, but said there was nothing at all in the service literature.  I
did a little digging on my own and found that there was a fuel contamination
sensor and light on the diesel version, so for whatever reason my vehicle had
been equipped with the mystery sensor.

Page 1/3  >  >>


Partner Zone
Latest Analysis
It's been two years since the Mac Mini's last appearance on iFixit's teardown table, but a newly revised version joins Apple's lineup this week.
More often than not, with the purchase of a sports car comes the sacrifice of any sort of utility. In other words, you can forget about a large trunk, extra seats for the kids, and more importantly driving in snowy (or inclement) weather. But what if there was a vehicle that offered the best of both worlds; great handling and practicality?
Kevin Gautier of Formlabs describes the making of a carbon fiber mold for an intake manifold, using a $3,300 3D printer, during Medical Design & Manufacturing Midwest.
Science fiction author Isaac Asimov may have the best rules for effective brainstorming and creativity. His never-before-published essay, "On Creativity," recently made it to the Web pages of MIT Technology Review.
Much has been made over the potentially dangerous flammability of lithium-ion batteries after major companies like Boeing, Sony, and Tesla have grappled with well-publicized battery fires. Researchers at Stanford University may have come up with a solution to this problem with a smart sensor for lithium-ion batteries that provides a warning if the battery is about to overheat or catch fire.
More:Blogs|News
Design News Webinar Series
10/7/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
9/25/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
9/10/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
7/23/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Oct 20 - 24, How to Design & Build an Embedded Web Server: An Embedded TCP/IP Tutorial
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6


Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Next Class: 10/28-10/30 11:00 AM
Sponsored by Stratasys
Next Class: 10/28-10/30 2:00 PM
Sponsored by Gates Corporation
Next Class: 11/11-11/13 2:00 PM
Sponsored by Littelfuse
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2014 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service