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TECH TIPS

Technical tips, advice and shared Information.........That's what this page is all about. This is only a very small part of the tips that appear in each issue of the member magazine.

There are also more tech tips and member recommended repair shops in the Members Only area and our TECHNICAL STAFF is prepared to answer your technical questions. See contact information in the Members Only area.

A complete copy of all the Technical Sections, topics, questions and answers published in the World from 1998 to 2007. Available on CD-Rom only for PC or Mac in pdf format. It sells for $ 10 plus $5 S&H and is indexed by subject for easy reference and contains articles, topics, questions and answers.  It  is available club store.

Detroit Iron CD Shop Manual Order Shop Manuals Here

CLICK HERE FOR PARTS FOR YOUR CHEVY AND OTHER VEHICLES!

 

(newer items listed first)
Fuel Pump Installation
Items to Get Great Paint
Malibu Starting Problem
Chevy Cruze Steering Problem
Questions and Answers part 3
Winter Car Wash
Questions and Answers part 2
Headlights
Storm Headlights
Questions and Answers part 1
More Light for Tracker
Louder Horn

Questions and Answers

Questions and answers and upkeep and performance hints are provided for information and advice purposes. No liability either express or implied is assumed by reliance on the information presented either by the writers or the CC. Some of the questions and answers are from the Internet and interactive bulletin boards.

Also be sure to see our Facebook group for more immediate answers .

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Q:     I have an ’89 lowered Chevy truck, whenever I "gas it" I have a real wheel spinning problem. I don’t know that I have many options to fix this problem. I have heard different stories of ladder bars and traction bars. I don’t know if these will work and I have heard that the make the ride pretty bad. I’m open to suggestions. Thank you.

Jason

A:     Both ladder bars and traction bars fix the problem of wheel hop. When you stomp it your rear leafs bend into an S shape and these keep your rear axle stable. If wheel hop is your problem these will help but if your tires are firmly planted and still spinning this won’t fix it. The easiest fix for this is either wide sticky tires, Or sell the truck to some 16 year old kid because they love to spin tires! Another fix for this would be a posi rear or at least a limited slip, if you don’t have one already.

Jeff

 

Q:     I just bought a 95 Chevy Metro and cannot find a repair manual, all of the publishers stop at '94. Can you tell me if a ’94 and ’95 are basically

the same model? Thanks.

B. Sapio

A:     They have different body styles, especially the 4 door model. There was a special fuel economy model offered in ’94 and a 4 cyl. engine was offered in ’95. Chilton’s has an updated service manual.

Sam

 

Q:     I drive a 1500 and it will start sometimes but other times it wont. It acts like it is going to start but wont take that final step. The check engine light is on. When it does start, it starts hard. Any suggestions on what it might be?

Mike W

A:     It is likely caused by whatever is making your check engine light come on. Take it to Autozone or advance auto parts and have them check your codes (free of charge) and repair the parts that are not functioning.

Chevy Club

 

Q:     What causes my 1998 Chevy Malibu to run for about thirty minutes and then shut down.

Ted Phillips

A:     It could be a number of things, check the carb first, get some carb cleaner and spray it in there, it could be it's sticking and causing it to shut down, or you could have a leak in the fuel pump or it could be defective, just because it's new or replaced doesn't mean it functions properly, it could have been installed wrong too or not tight enough, it could be your catalytic converter too, and that's a whole mess that you don't want to deal with.

Chevy Club

 

Q:     All settings on the fan work except the highest. Can you tell me where the relay switch is for that high setting on a 1991 Chevy Silverado?

    Joe Stanton

A:     It is under the hood on the passenger side underneath the black cover. It looks like a big T. Its underneath. Its one on the relays not sure exactly but it should be labeled on the under side of the cover.

    Frank

 

Q:     I have a 1991 Chevy S-10. My vent control will not switch off of the floor vent. I get very little air coming from other selected vents. I replaced the vacuum line from the firewall to the booster on the right fender.

    Do I have a vacuum pod or actuator problem?

    Mike Bell

A:     It sounds like your actuator is broke.

    Rob

 

Q:     I am seeking any advice that might save my toy from going to some kid with big eyes! I think that the transmission is about finished with its life in my truck... was a lot of fun to mud with and just plain play in... but now the great looking thing only shifts from 1st to 2nd, if you shift up at the right moment, with a top speed (rpm wise) of 45 woppin miles an hour. Some please tell me that there is hope for my first love, other than a rebuild/used tranny replacement. Thanks for any input, even if it is not what I want to hear!

    RSTIMG6

A:     Check the shift governor first. If that tranny is a standard 700-R4 (without an electronic prindle switch on the side) look on the driverís side rear of transmission and see if there is a metal cap about the size of a baseball. If there is, pop it off with a screw driver and hammer, and slide the governor out and see what the plastic teeth look like. If it is electronic, take it to a good transmission shop for a proper diagnosis and rebuild. I highly recommend Aamco Transmissions. You will pay more, but you get the best warranty in the business, with the option to buy additional coverage.

    Doc

 


Q: Has anyone had the problem with Corsica motor mounts breaking? My motor moves so much my transmission doesnít want to go into gear. Any suggestions?

    Nic

A: You will need to jack the engine up slightly to remove and replace. Just replace them.

    Doc


HEADLIGHTS
by Charles B. Andes

I have been thinking of this for a while, and finally took action.

When switching on headlights, 'high' beams the 'low' beams go off and sometimes I switch back and forth to see the whole road.

Now, I have the setup that has both high and low beams on when in high setting, and low beams only in low setting. It is great. I can see near and far in high, and don't bother anyone in low.

On my Tracker, which is ground control, I used the Radio Shack diode,

PN276-1185, a diode bridge good for 25 Amps at 50 volts. On the ground side the bulbs, the cathode (+) goes to the high beam control and the anode (AC) goes to the low beam control. (The other three diodes are unused.

Usually, the headlights are hot voltage controlled, just put the diode in the other way. This part is heat sinked and easily mounted with a #8 screw to a metal part. In some cases, you may have to increase the fuse a little also, 15 A to 20A.

Another benefit, if a high beam bulb burns out, you will still have a light on that side. Much safer and the cops will go on by. Could take this one step further and turn on the fog lamps also. I suggest turn on the low beams first, then go to high so that you limit the surge current instead of turning all 4 lamps on at once.


STORM HEADLIGHTS
by Gordon Wilson

I just had to replace a burnt out seal beam on my sister-in-laws 92-Geo Storm GSi. I priced the seal beam at a local auto supply place. The low beam is $42.00 Canadian. I would assume the price in the USA is as outrageous there as it is here. So to try and beat the system I thought I would share my tech tip. The original seal beam is a Sylvania H4351.

The lamp and plastic holder is bonded to the glass so you have to replace the whole headlamp. Carefully remove the plastic bulb holder from the glass lens. You can do this with a small grinder (Dremel) or a coarse file. Once you have removed the plastic and the bulb, clean up the old sealant from the opening in the lens. Now go down to your local parts store and purchase a GE 9006 HB4 replacement bulb and a small tube of high heat silicon sealant. Apply plenty of sealant around the base of the new lamp holder and bed the bulb and holder into the lens. Let dry over night and reinstall your new low beam headlight. The total cost was about $12.00 (that's $4 or$ 5 US) Hope this tip can save you some bucks.


QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS


Q: I am replacing the head gasket on a 90 Geo Metro 1.0 L engine. My Haynes manual only gives the torque specs for the head bolts. I would like to use the method that measures the rotation of the bolts. If you could give me those specs I sure would appreciate it. Thanks.
    Judson Royle

A: I know the procedure you are talking about - where you tighten to a lower # of torque, then turn the bolts 30-45-90 degrees in stages to get proper bolt stretch.
Medium duty and up diesel engines often use this procedure as it is a more accurate way of getting proper torque on the head bolts.
I have not seen this spec or procedure printed for a Geo engine.
    Dave Logan


Q: I have a 1989 GEO Metro that burns an excessive amount of oil. The car only has around 120000 miles on it. It began to smoke excessively after the head was replaced. We tested the compression on each of the cylinders
and they seemed to be fine. So we put another low miles head on the engine, but it still smokes and hardly has any power. Do you know of any similar experiences, or know what the problem is?
    Christopher Sneed

A: It is quite common for an engine to begin burning oil or having excessive crank case pressure after the cylinder head is replaced or reworked on a high mileage engine. By the way, only 120,000 miles is considered high mileage for that and most other gasoline engines. The increase in compression developed once the valves are renewed usually causes the pressure to pass the worn piston rings into the crankcase. This in turn leads to oil consumption.
    Kevin Mouton


Q: When I took my 1994 Geo Prizm in for service at 55,000 miles, the garage mechanic told me that my front brake pads had "plenty of wear" left. At 72,000 miles a dealer mechanic looked at them and told me the pads have about 50 percent wear left. I drive about 20,000 miles per year of which 15,000 are highway miles. Still, how can this be?
    Tom Noonan

A: The Prizm is not known for going through brakes, but yours sounds a bit above average. There could be a number of factors. First your are probably a good driver. You anticipate stops and allow the car to coast down. The Prizm is a light car so bringing it to a stop doesn't take much wear. Finally, three fourths of the time, or 54,000 of your 72,000 miles, your car is cruising and not wearing the brake linings. That leaves 18,000 miles of stop-and-go driving and most cars' brakes go at least this long under the same conditions. If you feel like replacing them, there are plenty of places that will separate you from your money.
Bob Weber

 


MORE LIGHT FOR TRACKER
by Charles Andes

At night were you ever driving in a very dark place, no street lights, no moon, cloudy, whatever; and found that you needed more from the headlights?

Here is a way to get the low beams to be on whenever high beams are illuminated.
Use the Radio Shack relay 275-226 ($6). Wire the coil to the high beam circuit, so the relay closes the contacts whenever the high beams are selected. Then wire the contacts to turn on the low beams. Makes quite a difference, no extra bulbs to buy and locate.


LOUDER HORN
by Charles Andes

Do you 'get no respect' when you blow your horn? A little 'beep' does little to warn or signal anyone else. Convert to a 12 wheeler horn - TOOT!

Try JC Whitney horn replacement, 12 volt 120dB ($10 ea), 13-3190 and 13-3191 dual tone (one high, one low). and use the 30 Amp relay from Radio Shack 275-226($6) to control them. Whitney's relay is 3 terminal, which does not allow separate coil and contacts on the relay.

Connect the wires from the stock horn to the relay coil. Watch polarization. Provide a new 30 amp circuit for all three horns. On my Tracker, there was an empty fuse location on the fuse box under the hood. Wire that to one of the contacts, and a horn +12 drive wire to each horn.

I also like to have the ground wire go to each horn, from a terminal strip (like house wiring).

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