Wasted Time

I know I need a sign like this for my garage, I think I spend more time cleaning however. It is a shame how we tend to clean our work space and then get it all dirty again. Although a clean and tidy space allows you to be more productive, but a dirty one makes you look busy, I always said never bring your car to a spotless repair center they don’t have any business so they clean.

The Sky Is Falling

Not really but with Dale Earnhardt Jr announcing his retirement at the end of the year it is going to seem like it to his fans, It does not surprise me as I don’t think he ever fully recovered from his concussion, sure he passed all the tests but a sliver of a second on the track cannot be tested for. I am not saying he lost his ability to drive a NASCAR just slipped a bit and that sliver of a second is what separated him from the rest. I think he will start his own cup team and drop his JR motorsports.  he may receive some broadcast offers but I see him staying close to his roots and being active in the sport.

I think Jimmy Johnson is not far behind on the retirement trail depends on how bad he wants # 8 title. He is still in contention at every race and a lot of this is due to Chad Knaus and the rest of his team.

We will, probably see a few other drivers contemplate giving up there helmet as the older drivers can hear hoof beats of the younger drivers


Ethanol is a cleaning agent and is harmful to your engine and its components. It will do considerable damage to your lawnmower, snowblower and any small engine. We are forced to use it in our vehicles and in 10% by volume it will not do a lot of harm. The problem comes when that is increased and I don’t think todays fuels are closely regulated and many times we buy a higher percentage.

The clean fuel program is pushing for a 15% and I feel that is too high and will cause harm. Time will tell how it all works out with the new administration. If you must use ethanol blended fuels in a small engine I recommend the addition of Sea Foam in the fuel.

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Emergency kits

If you received a road side emergency kit for Xmas here are a few facts. Most are a great help during a roadside emergency, the expensive are of course a bigger help, but anything is better than nothing.

I don’t see road side flares as a good idea, you store them in a warm trunk for who knows how long and will they work and if they do for how long.

The booster cables in many kits are worthless they are of such small gauge wire there is no power left when it gets to the battery. A good set is expensive but worth it when you need them, they should be a minimum of 16 – 18 feet long and heavy enough to supply power.

Duct tape or I prefer gorilla tape is a must for any kit as are a few basic tools and a first aid kit. There are several list on line and also kits are available but I would make up my own to your own set of skills and needs in an emergency.

Here again buy what you can afford, I know it is tough to spend money just to have it sit in storage until needed but trust me you will be glad you did when you need the kit.

Road side kits and emergency survival kits are a separate kit and the needs are different but in conjunction with each other they can be a life saver. A post later on home evacuation kits.


Codes and More Codes

Remember the good old days when you adjusted the carb or the vacuum break on the choke maybe bumped the timing up a toush. Now everything is electronic so you hook up a scanner or count light flashes to get a trouble code maybe use a lab scope to check burn time or KV of a plug wire if it has one or check a coil one for each cylinder.

I do think today’s engines run better with electronic controls. But getting a code is only the first step in repairing a problem. Code shows a bad MAP sensor so all you have to is replace the MAP sensor. WRONG it may be a leaking or plugged vacuum hose or a poor connection. When the counter guy says you need a MAP sensor to cure your problem remember it is his job to sell parts not to fix your problem.

Always use a trouble shooting tree to locate a problem and don’t skip a step because you kow it is OK or that never causes a problem. I have heard many a story from help lines that when they go there check list they find a skip was missed and that is the problem.


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