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Interrobang articles by Dave Redinger


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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Pressure check
The second best thing you can do to maintain your car in reasonable condition is to maintain tire pressures. The first being regular oil changes. You've heard it many times in this column, “tires are the only thing between you and the road.... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Is it collectable?
What makes your car collectable? Is it a worthwhile investment to keep your ride on the road 30 years? Now that spring is just around the corner a lot of us in the car world are looking forward to getting our toys out for that first spring run. A que... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Reason it's there
Every so often an accessory comes along that isn't appreciated until you start to use it. To name a few: remote door locks, automatic tuning radios, blue tooth, power steering. The latest gadget - on-board navigation. We just returned from a week... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Computer complications
Are cars too complicated? After all it's just a car. Well quite frankly in light of where technology is today, cars are complicated, but with that complication they have become more reliable, more economical to run and environmentally friendlier.... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: What's the right octane?
In an effort to meet the demands of the newly regulated government emissions standards, car manufactures were forced into abandoning the reliable carburetor for the new and yet untested electronic fuel injection system. All this occurred in the mid-8... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Recalls damage reputations
I really applaud Toyota for stepping up and handling a safety related recall in such an astute manor, especially when viewed in the light of the all the negativity that is attached to such a massive recall. I can't fathom how recalls ever ... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: From knobs to complexity
Back in the day the controls on your vehicle were manual. That is, when you pulled a knob, it was mechanically connected to operate and control a function. The operator actually physically moved a valve or lever. The system worked well although there... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Time for a diagnostic?
Green cars just didn't happen. Actually environmental awareness started way back in 1962. An environmentalist named Rachel Carson wrote a book about the environmental harm caused by the over usage of DDT as a pesticide. This new environmental awa... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Lube avoids sticky situations
My father always drove Cadillacs. Even though he owned several dealerships in his lifetime he always took “his” car to the local Cadillac dealer. In the late 50s and early 60s cars need oil changes every 1000 miles and as most motorists, ... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Cold saps battery power
Every cold snap it happens - dead batteries. Modern batteries rely on a chemical reaction in order to produce power. Colder temperatures have the effect of slowing down this reaction, resulting in a dramatic drop in the power available to start your... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Tick tick tick...
Years ago I met an old time mechanic whose job involved working the printing press at the old Toronto Telegram. He explained that after years of experience on this press he could hear when the machine was running well and when it was off. He ... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Getting it right
Choosing a repair shop is not easy. You have to depend on the expertise the shop has available. In the old days cars were relatively simple. The technology was mechanical, not electronic. As a tech, mechanical repairs are relatively easy because they... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Prepping for storage
The cold weather is coming. Now might be time to put the toys away. When storing your car start with a clean and dry area. The space doesn't have to be heated, but should be secure. Remember once the car is laid up, don't play with it. If you... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Leak could lead to bigger issues
As cars become more sophisticated, so do the repair methods. Tools have gone high tech. Computers, scan tools, bore scopes, information programs, mechanic chat rooms. As a small shop, we have worked hard in keeping up. We have invested time and lots ... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Unfixed problems can lead to expensive repairs
I think most of us have seen the movie Christine. It's a story of a 1957 Plymouth Coupe that wreaks havoc on a small mid-western town and yet miraculously restores itself to pristine condition by morning. Cars that can restore themselves? Only in... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Annual car check-ups need to be top priority
Big traffic jam on the way to work this morning. I thought I was in for another one of those avoidable accident scenes. I couldn't be more wrong. Seems the holdup was due to a mechanical failure. There in the centre of the roadway a woman was on ... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Recalls a good thing
It always surprises me that when a manufacturer has a recall campaign it's looked upon in a negative light. In the case of recalls, negativity is all wrong. Recalls are basically product up-dates. Throughout any products life cycle, failure or op... Read more

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The Neighbourhood Mechanic: Dave called to task
Dear Dave, In your column “Cracking Codes” last week you said the man wasn't ripped off at $65, because “most shops charge an hour for this service.” That may be, but the fact remains that reading the code and looking up ... Read more

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The Neighborhood Mechanic: Cracking codes
I know that car repairs are expensive. Cars are complicated. Case in point. A Lincoln Town Car comes in for service. The problem is the interior lights won't go off. I thought I would let you into my world for a moment. Here's just part of th... Read more

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The Neighborhood Mechanic: Servicing hybrids
A lot of new technology is being developed to clean up the pollutants that cars spew out. However, problems arise as this new technology ages, who's going to fix it? Here we have a case where a reader is contemplating purchasing a used hybrid. Ou... Read more

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The Neighborhood Mechanic: Run on the right octane
Are you wasting money and increasing your running costs by buying more gas than you need? Check your owner's manual for the octane number your car requires to run efficiently. The number you are looking for is called a RON rating. Usually regular... Read more

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The Neighborhood Mechanic: Not so good vibrations
Measure twice and cut once. Good words for any technician to live by. In the weekly mail bag we receive many requests for information on what is best called an unsolvable problem. The secret to solving most of these issues is time. Taking the time to... Read more

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The Neighborhood Mechanic: Honda's problem easily diagnosed
We often say in this column that modern cars are computers on wheels. Most of the functions in the vehicle are now controlled by some form of electronic gismo or another. Unlike your friendly desktop we don't throw the hardware out after a few ye... Read more

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Time to get car tuned for winter driving
Hey, don't shoot the messenger, but winter is just around the corner. According to a survey conducted by the Car Care Council, 70 per cent of the people interviewed admitted to not winterizing their vehicles at all. Let's look at a few items... Read more

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