Tag Archives: car problems

My Two Cadillacs

Visitors to this automotive blog have seen me write about the car problems my 09 SRX has delivered. I thought I would take a minute to explain my long-standing loyalty to this brand regardless of issues. I’ve always been a big fan of the Cadillac models. I’m not sure where this love came from, as growing up my parents drove Ford and Chevy cars exclusively.

89 Cadillac Coupe DevilleIn fact they considered the purchase of such an automobile a waste of disposable income and verbally express their displeasure with my choice of automobiles when I bought one. Maybe it was the rebellious side of me that wanted to do something different than the rest of the family. Regardless, my dream became a reality in the early 90s when I purchased a high mileage 1989 Cadillac Coupe Deville. This was no run-of-the-mill everybody’s got one type of car. It was a Liberty Edition. Continue reading

Frozen Windshield Washers

frozen washer fluidTo follow will be some information on how to deal with frozen windshield washers. In a perfect world washer fluid would never freeze even on the coldest days in the coldest regions. This is why they have the blue colored windshield washer fluid that contains an anti-freeze to prevent this from happening. As a professional car mechanic I can tell you that even though your windshield washer fluid may look blue sitting in the bottle there could be a fair amount of water mixed in with it.

First of all many windshield washer fluids only protect to a few degrees below freezing. Often this is the $.99 cheap stuff that you might find at your local big-box retailer. Heavy duty fluids can cost a few dollars more but if you live in a cold environment this could be money well spent. When you take your vehicle in for an oil change and the shop is responsible for topping off the fluids all too often they stretch the cheap and weak windshield washer anti freeze by adding water to it. It still looks blue but doesn’t have the protection from freezing like when it was full strength. Continue reading

Daytime Running Lights

2004 Chevy Blazer

2004 Chevy Blazer

Daytime running lights was voted into a Canadian law several years back and required all new vehicles to be equipped with running lights that were automatically turned on during daylight hours. This automotive technology was developed with safety in mind.

In the United States General Motors was one of the first companies to also make this standard equipment on all GM vehicles that were sold in North America. My 2004 Chevrolet Blazer is equipped with daytime running lights. And they have not been completely trouble-free.

For one thing they are on so much that they experience more bulb failures than any other bulbs all my truck. There is also quite a lot of heat generated from the bulbs being on all the time. This can eventually melt the bulb sockets and the plastic lenses and housings that they are mounted in.

How daytime running lights work

On some vehicles they use the high beam lights as dedicated daytime running lights. Continue reading

Improper Ignition Timing

timing tester

Timing Tester

Improper ignition timing can cause several car problems. Anything from hard starting to lack of power might be traced back to the root cause of incorrect base ignition timing.

In rare occasions I have also seen a hard start condition from this as well. Often when people are having poor performance from their engine they may wonder if it is an issue with the engine timing.

You have to remember that poor engine performance can also be caused by poor compression, overheating, incorrect valve timing that can be caused by a timing belt that slipped one notch. Clogged catalytic converters and probably about 20 other things can also cause this condition.

How to test for improper ignition timing

When the ignition timing is not correct there are a few tests that can point to the car problem. Continue reading