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With servicing, you have to remember: it’s the time or the distance - whichever occurs first. You cannot say: Ohhh - I’ve only driven 8000 kilometres. I’ll wait. Unacceptable. You’ll void your warranty. Something expensive will break. Don’t do that. Feedback is the first problem with annual servicing. Cars are so astonishingly reliable today, on average, that the people who own them increasingly fail to do any routine checks. The system is the car. The change is increased reliability over time. The feedback is people failing to do the most basic checks because cars generally fail to break down often enough to motivate greater interest in roadworthiness by the people using them. We could vox pop people in the street - and I know a worrying, significant proportion of them not only never check the coolant level, oil level and tyre pressures, they would not know how or where to do this. How many cars do you suppose are out there right now, driving around, and the only time the oil, water and air ever get checked is during that annual service? Half as often as previously. That’s feedback, opening the door to disaster. People used to check everything regularly because cars used to break down more often if you didn’t. It was almost a guarantee. Once a fortnight, or every second time you stop at the bowser. Check those three things: Oil, coolant, tyre pressures. It would avert so many five-figure disasters. Cars are definitely more reliable today. But those statistically infrequent catastrophic failures are very expensive. Perhaps you can make it a Sunday morning ritual. Unlike going to church, doing this will reduce the risk of going to hell. Automotive hell. Second problem is early replacement of parts. Here’s the scenario: When I go to my local independent mechanic, he’ll say to me: “Mate, your brakes are getting a bit low. Come back in three months; I’ll have another look. You better budget about $X to replace them - we might have to do the discs as well.” Couple of big advantages here, right? I get three months to budget for the job. So there’s that. And I don’t throw away a set of pads that are good for the next three months. You don’t get these advantages at a dealership. Problem number three is human nature. The 12 months comes up. You push the limit a bit. It’s 15 months, all of a sudden, and the service is still due - provided your engine doesn’t compose a letter to its barrister or go poopy in its trousers. 12 months is a limit on the time between services, not a broad hint to start thinking about it over coming weeks, maybe get your people to set something up with the dealership some time after Christmas and before the heat death of the universe. It’s a limit. It’s why they stopped putting the term ‘safe working load’ on shackles and cranes - because people thought it was OK to be a little bit unsafe. They call it a working load limit now. This is that, psychologically. Finally, there’s this issue of harsh operating environments reducing the service interval. People have entirely the wrong idea about this. You might think a harsh operating environment is some long drive across the Nullabor, or towing a boat, or something. But in fact, one of the harshest things you can do to engines is start the car, drive a short distance - five kays or something - then park, catch the train to work, and repeat this process every day. This is, like GitMo for engine oil, which is subject to immense chemical attack and contamination in this situation. There’s a lot of combustion blow-by into the crankcase, because the parts haven’t warmed up properly and therefore they are not yet the right size. So a lot of water, unburned fuel, sooty crap, aromatics, whatever, gets into the oil. It becomes significantly diluted, and does a relatively shit job lubricating the precision parts [LOOK DOWN] down there. It’s especially bad if the engine is turbocharged, because turbos run very hot and very fast, and they require good, uninterrupted lubrication. And they are kinda expensive to replace. If you’re one of these short trip drivers who doesn’t get out on the highway very often, you’re really not giving the oil much opportunity to heat up and evaporate away those cold start impurities. Heaven forbid, in this situation, you might actually think about doing an intermediate oil change at the six-month point between major services. Also a great opportunity for your local mechanic to check the car’s vitals.
DIESEL vs GASOLINE / PETROL OFF-ROAD Which is better Support the creation of videos at Patreon.com/RonnyDahl Find us at the links below: Website: http://www.4-wheeling-in-western-australia.com/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/4-Wheeling-in-western-australia/356375844412362?ref=hl Google plus: https://plus.google.com/u/0/communities/113332608844713749316 Please Subscribe: https://www.youtube.com/user/RonBacardi666 For more details, Off Road information & Videos visit www.4-wheeling-in-western-australia.com/
I purposely run my car down to zero to show you what happens and what you have to do to recover. The best solution is to charge up before you run out. You can get free supercharging when buying a Tesla Model S or X by using Pawel's referral link: http://ts.la/pawel8330 If you like my content and would like to see more videos, please support me on my Patreon page: http://www.patreon.com/Teslabjorn
How to Buy a Car: Top 6 Tips to Buy New Cars details the top six things new car buyers don’t investigate, but should: NEW CARS: BUILD DATE A listener of mine on Radio 2UE in Sydney put a deposit down to buy a new car in January 2015. It turns out the new car - a Suzuki S-Cross - was actually built in 2013. The compliance plate went on in 2014, and the new car was set for delivery in 2015. Disaster. Get a discount on your next new car if you’re actually buying old stock - last year’s model - because you are certainly going to pay for it at trade-in time. NEW CARS: SPARE TYRE When you buy a car, check the spare tyre. Space saver spare tyres are one of the car industry’s great, enduring frauds. They are of absolutely no benefit to you on a new car. They’re limited to 80km/h, and they don’t grip the road very well. Always investigate your intended new car’s spare tyre, at the dealership, before paying a deposit - and sometimes you can negotiate to fit a full-sized spare when you buy the new car. If it’s critical to the new car sale, the car dealer might even throw it in for free. If you only ever drive 15 or 20km from home in suburbia, space-savers are probably OK. But if you get out on the highway, even occasionally, don’t risk your life by buying a car with a space-saver. They’re a joke. NEW CARS: LIGHTS You don’t normally test drive new cars at night, right? But there are two things you really should check here: outside the new car, you need to know whether the headlights - and in particular the high beams - are adequate. Some new cars are just anorexic in the high beam department. Again, not so important if you only ever drive in the city, or suburbia. But very important in the country. Inside the new car, the reverse applies. Dimmers on instruments are great for driving in isolated areas at night - you dim the instrument lights down to maximise night vision out there on the road ahead. Very important. But the big, fat centre LCD display often doesn’t dim sufficiently (or at all) for night driving. NEW CARS: DEPRECIATION There are two ways to lose money on a car. You can pay too much for it up front, or the depreciation can burn you at the back end of the deal. OK - all cars depreciate, but some depreciate like Dresden on the ides of February, 1945. A classic example here was in last month’s Ford Territory review - which Ford fans hated, principally because it’s such a lemon. Mechanically as well as on the depreciation front. It pays to do your homework on depreciation - and here, past performances are excellent indicators of the future. NEW CARS: UPDATE TIMING You don't want to buy a nice new whatever, and see the manufacturer upgrade it four weeks later. Even a mid-life upgrade is a bit of a disaster because a) it usually comes with more standard equipment at the same price and b) the one you bought - the suddenly ‘old’ model - becomes instantly obsolete and its value takes an immediate hit. You need to let your keyboard do the walking here: google the car you want and keywords like update, upgrade, plus the current year and the next year. Find out what’s going on in the near future. NEW CARS: FIRE SALES Here's what the car industry does with its marketplace dogs. When all else fails, and sales have flatlined, the manufacturer bends over and drops its pants. Every time. They fire-sale the price in an attempt to prop up or stimulate sales. Generally unsuccessfully. Holden dropped its pants on the latest Cruze and Commodore, and Ford has just played the same undignified card with the Territory. Although none of them put it like that in the press releases... So I guess that's good news if you desperately want a Cruze, a Commodore or a Territory… Of course, if you actually bought one of these marketplace lemons a few months earlier, guess what happens to the value of your car? It just evaporates. Desperation discounting by manufacturers slashes the same amount from the value of the lemon you own - because used car prices vary directly in line with replacement cost. So there you go: Six things you probably weren’t considering while you’re poring over the specs and the pretty pix of your possible next new vehicle.
We recently changed over the hitch on the caravan from the traditional McHitch to the new McHitch Uniglide. I love it. Have a look at how easy it is to back up to. I have a reversing camera on the number plate and another that I can place on top of the Air Safe air bag hitch if I want to be able to see the actual connection. The first time I used it, I reversed up to the caravan on my own and got it first click. Brilliant.
This is a dead-easy mistake to make - especially if you are new to diesel. And it can cost you an arm and a leg. Worst-case scenario: you’ll be on the hook for $10,000-$15,000.
Diesel engines use very precise high pressure pumps to amp up the pressure in the fuel rails to about 2000 atmospheres. This seems excessive, but the extreme pressure is needed for injector control in the millisecond domain.
Very precise cam-type fuel pumps are used. Unfortunately, they need the lubricating properties of diesel fuel to function and survive. Petrol has lots of interesting properties; lubricity is not one of them.
So the hardened steel faces on the cams disintegrate, and the metal fragments travel quickly downstream where they lodge in the microscopic holes of the piezoelectric fuel injectors, destroying them, too.
This is a five-figure mistake. Everything downstream of the high-pressure pump needs to be replaced. Everything upstream, including the fuel tank, needs to be cleaned out.
So my strong advice is: Don’t do that, ever. Carmakers should do a far better job warning about this danger. And, frankly there’s no reason a system could not be contrived in which it was impossible to put the square peg of a petrol nozzle into the round hole of the diesel receptacle.
As things stand, it’s up to you to get this right.
If you become aware you have done this, before re-starting the vehicle, do not start it. Not even a bit. Not even to get it away from the pump and into a parking bay nearby. Not even if Ahh-poo gets very very angry indeed.
Conscript some cheerleaders - in the spirit of equality - to help you push the vehicle out of the way, if it’s really necessary. You’ll be getting your car towed from here.
In this case it will most likely be possible to clean out the tank and the low-pressure part of the fuel system, and the cost won’t be prohibitive. Do not start the vehicle. If you do, things will get rapidly worse.
If you have started the vehicle, and you become aware of this error, shut it down urgently. Obviously don’t stop anywhere dangerous, because it’s not worth dying for. But make getting safely shut down a real priority. Arrange a tow. You might dodge a bullet here … one never knows.
And if you’ve been greeted with deafening silence already - you’ll be getting a tow from here on in, too. And brace for impact, because it’s probably going to be expensive.
Obviously, one place you might want to have the vehicle towed is the dealership - but they do tend to rub their hands together at this point, not to mention line up 100 industro-spec Dyson vacuums and anticipate eagerly the commencement of docking procedures with your bank account.
Nothing a dealer likes more than the sniff of desperation in the air…
So you might want to have the vehicle towed home and spend a few hours on the phone investigating repair options near you. Specialist diesel repairers near you might be able to do the job substantially more cheaply than the dealer. Certainly, get more than one cost estimate.
It’s still going to be expensive, but there’s less likelihood you’ll need to use the onsite defibrillator with an independent workshop. But you do want a diesel specialist, because this is a technically demanding job.
I cannot stress enough the advantages of prevention over cure here. Measure twice and cutting once when it comes to re-fuelling a diesel - especially if you’re new to diesel.
And look, if you mis-fuel the other way around by putting diesel in a petrol car, it’s probably not going to be hell on earth in quite the same way - that’s a mistake that you can generally clear up for under $1000.