With the hood open, listen for a chirping noise with the engine warmed up. If the noise is coming from the high-pressure fuel pump, follow the Repair Procedure in this Tech Tip.
Does air ride scare you? Would you prefer to sell a conversion kit rather than diagnose an air ride code or light? You are not alone. On the surface, these systems can seem complex when compared to metal springs. But, once you understand how the system senses the vehicle’s state and how the air pressure is managed, air ride diagnostics and service won’t seem so overwhelming.
Reading engineering papers tends to be a boring exercise, but they do give a technician like myself a new perspective on how a common automotive cooling system could actually be improved. Of course, our immediate thought is how the cooling system can keep the engine cooler. Not so, according to one paper.
Suspensions have gone softer with larger-diameter bushings, compared to 20 years ago. During this time, both ride quality and handling have gotten better. Most modern bushings augment the geometry of the suspension. As the vehicle loads the suspension, movement in the bushings can change the toe, camber and caster so that the vehicle is more stable under braking, cornering and acceleration.
Just knowing that the average age of vehicles on the road is 11.6 years should be music to your ears. After all, older vehicles rack up more miles, and with that comes more wear and tear. Add to that new AAA roadside research that reveals vehicles that are 10-plus years old are twice as likely to end up stranded on the side of the road compared to newer vehicles, and you’ve got the perfect storm brewing for service opportunities with the upcoming summer road-trip season, says Mary DellaValle, editor of ImportCar magazine.
For the past decade, almost every vehicle that Volkswagen and Audi has sold in the U.S. has been equipped with direct fuel injection. These FSI, TSI and GDI systems allow for better fuel economy and power. The switch to direct injection has also allowed Volkswagen to downsize its engines from 2.0L to 1.4L on base models without losing any power, while still improving fuel efficiency.
If you are replacing a caliper that has locked up and created a great deal of heat, you should also replace the brake hose. This is a good practice anytime, but particularly important with the Toyota line, as the hose can fail at the caliper fitting after being subjected to the extreme heat.
Anytime a tire is removed from the rim of a vehicle, a new TPMS kit must be installed. The existing sensor kit could be brand new or years old, but every tire removal should include the replacement of the TPMS sensor kit. Not replacing the kits could cause big problems with tire pressure and the vehicle’s TPMS if not properly serviced.