Ask A Car Expert. Vol. 2

Ask A Car Expert. Vol. 2

FAM strives to be your one stop shop for all things internet and most things manly. But you don’t have to be an internet nerd nor a man to need help with your ride from time to time. So allow us to introduce you to our Car Expert as they (lets not gender assume) answer some questions posed by our very own message board community.


2004 Z71 Tahoe 5.3L. I have a bad lifter tick that’s been going on for about a year now. I’ve ran a few cleansing additives through with no luck and the quote I got to fix it was $2,600 because they have to pull the heads to get to the lifters. I said screw that price and just kept on ticking down the road. Am I messing anything up internally or is it just the annoying noise I have to deal with? Don’t wanna throw a push rod going down the interstate because of it.

CE: The 99-06 GM 5.3 is flat out one of the best engines ever made. You basically have to starve the engine of oil, or water in order to blow it up. The quote you got is way out of line. You can buy a good used engine with around 100k for $600-$800. If you are not capable of installing the labor will be around $500. My advice is start looking for an engine that you can buy and put it in the shed and keep rolling until you need to swap it. Could be 1k or 100k.

2012 Chevy Cruze, check engine light came on the other morning, Idle seems to be higher than usual.

CE: Have a qualified mechanic run a diagnostic scan. (Autozone, Oreilly, Advanced, do not employee mechanics.) Even though they “test” for free, they also sell you shit you don’t need. This persons issue could be any one of these: Air flow meter, Throttle valve, 02 sensor, clogged Catalytic converter, Air Filter, ECM/PCM, or exceeding the MFG Gross Vehicle Weight.

1982 CJ 7 what’s the best route to shore up the shuddy steering system? Feel like it drives me instead of the other way around. Serious question.

CE: The steering shaft tends to get loose at the couple on the old Jeeps. This is the shaft that runs from the bottom of the steering column to the Power steering gear box. Easy fix. Here is a link to the part you need

Just bought a diesel can you explain why the DEF is so important and how it works?

“SCR is a technology that uses a urea based diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) and a catalytic converter to significantly reduce oxides of nitrogen (NOx) emissions.” EPA most recent bright idea implemented in 2010. The fluid is injected into the manifold, not into the Diesel fuel itself. Think of it like an additive added to already burn’t fuel.

Question for the car expert: I’m going to be leasing my next vehicle this weekend. Hopefully Saturday so I don’t have to rent a car for longer than 1 day.

I would like to lease a new Jeep Grand Cherokee that’s pretty decked out for at or under $400/month… 3/36k lease with less than $3k down. Is this an achievable goal? I have timing on my side, with it being the end of the month. My strategy is to look at a Cherokee and pretend I like it then tell them they have a shot at upselling me. Thoughts?

CE:Never lease unless you are a wealthy person.

My spinners spin too fast, how can I slow them down just a wee bit?
CE: Short answer= KYS


Follow us on Twitter @firstandmonday.