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Backyard Mechanic Articles

  • QUESTION: I bought a new Honda Fit last July and at first was getting 12-14 km per litre (calculated manually using gas receipts and km driven), with the dashboard gauge showing 7.7 litre/100k. Now, I'm down to 10km per litre, with the gauge showing 8.0 l/100k. Can you explain why …

    June 14, 2013

  • Winter is but a memory now, and many of us are looking forward to summer trips and adventures. Drier weather and good road conditions add to our enjoyment. Whether you are travelling across the continent or just around the neighbourhood, the last thing anyone wants or needs is vehicle trouble …

    June 7, 2013

  • QUESTION: I own a 2004 Buick LeSabre Custom on which I replaced both air shocks last year because one of the original shocks developed a leak. The replacement shocks were Monroe MA 822, which were installed by an experienced and skilled journeyman mechanic who operates a small repair shop. Immediately upon …

    May 31, 2013

  • Although summer is not quite with us yet, the warm sun quickly heats up a vehicle's interior. Many drivers turn on the air conditioning for a few minutes when starting the vehicle to bring the temperature down. The first caresses of cold air bring comfort, but sometimes they're accompanied by a …

    May 24, 2013

  • QUESTION: I have a 2008 Acura TSX with 130,000 kilometres on it. When I had my last maintenance done, I was told the front compliance bushings will have to be replaced before the next safety inspection is due in August. I was quoted parts are about $270 and 3.6 hours …

    May 17, 2013

  • AUTO TECH: Subaru EyeSight technology truly amazing

    Driving can be a demanding task, with lots to see and comprehend in a very short time frame. A second set of eyes can be very useful at times, and that's exactly what Subaru's EyeSight technology provides. The two small stereoscopic cameras mounted inside the windshield on either side of the …

    May 10, 2013

  • QUESTION: My dealer says that my cabin air filter needs to be replaced. They want about $100 to do this. A few months ago on TV there was a story about this job and the mechanic said, and I forget his exact words, but that this was a ripoff. The Honda …

    May 3, 2013

  • AUTO TECH: Fusion Hybrid earns Ford Canadian green award

    Can cars be "green"? Yes, but it takes much more than just fuel economy or low emissions. That was shown recently when F A panel of judges selected the Fusion Hybrid from a group of 15 noteworthy vehicles, including four electric vehicles. While some would quickly think an electric vehicle should be …

    April 26, 2013

  • BACKYARD MECHANIC: It's cool to run your engine hot... just not TOO hot

    QUESTION: I recently had a new thermostat installed in my car and now when the engine is idling, the temperature gauge reads up just past the half mark. Is the engine getting too hot, and is there a connection with getting my new thermostat? ANSWER: There is without doubt a connection …

    April 19, 2013

  • The average consumer will purchase a new set of tires every three to four years. But each of us drives on different roads in different vehicles and under different weather conditions, so one tire doesn't fit all. Given the hundreds of tire models available on the market, picking a new …

    April 12, 2013

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