Q: Do you really think electric cars are the way to go?
I recently read about a woman who bought a used Ford electric vehicle and within months she needed a battery. The seller told him a new battery would cost $16,000, which is more than the cost of the car.
AND: I firmly believe that electric cars have a place in transportation. I recently drove a Chevy Bolt and found it could work for everyone but my longest rides.
As for costs, I think battery costs will go down as we see more electric cars. After all, that was the case with calculators, VCRs, and flat-screen televisions.
It looks like lithium-ion battery recycling will turn into a multi-billion dollar industry. We also see new players using different ideas. One is VinFast, where you can buy the car but rent the battery.
I believe the future could be a “hybrid garage” where people have both an electric and a petrol car.
Q: I recently read your comments about windshield washer problems and thought I’d add this story.
A few years ago I bought a brand new Honda CRV from a local dealer. I drove it home after a “100 point” inspection that didn’t include checking the wiper fluid.
I went to use the wiper fluid and it only half worked. I took it to the dealer immediately and found out that there is a mouse slot under the sound panel in the hood. The little bum decided the washer hose was worth gnawing.
Why do these new tools attract rodents?
AND: You are correct that it is not always a traditional mechanical part failure that is causing the problem.
I thought we were seeing more rodent damage as manufacturers used more soy-based materials. After some additional research, none of the soy automotive products I researched were food-based, so they shouldn’t attract rats. I think there are more people, more buildings and less places for these rodents to live.
Q: I have a 2018 Ford Explorer with a squeak in its left rear tire. It’s not fixed, it happens in rotation. Noisy and annoying! Am I safe? What could be the reason? Any help would be greatly appreciated as it will be in the shop soon.
AND: The noise could be a brake problem from the service brake or the parking brake. Also, the brake rotors may be corroded. You’re doing the right thing by bringing it to the repair shop. It would be best to show the sound to the service writer or technician, or perhaps have a passenger record the sound as it is.
Q: What’s going on in the radio show? I’ve been listening to you on several stations for years. Did you retire from radio?
AND: The last station I got on was sold out. I’m back after a few weeks www.959watd.com Sunday mornings from 11 am to noon. Listen online or tell your smart speaker to play WATD.
Q: After watching YouTube videos, I added Freon to Hyundai Tucson’s air conditioner, but it doesn’t stay in it. Is there a leak that I can find and fix myself? The vehicle is at 175,000 km.
AND: The first issue that needs to be addressed is whether there is a leak or a mechanical failure causing the system to fail.
If the system has a low charge and you added a paint and coolant, you can see where it is leaking.
Common areas that may leak are the hoses and seals and the condenser (mounted in front of the radiator). They may have been damaged by debris from the road. While this is a possible DIY project – unless you have some training (more than YouTube) and the proper equipment, it should be left to the professionals.
John Paul is the AAA Northeast Car Doctor. He has over 40 years of experience in the automobile industry and is an ASE Certified Master Technician. Write to John Paul, The Car Doctor at 110 Royal Little Drive, Providence, RI 02904. Or send it by e-mail. email@example.com and type “Car Doctor” in the subject field. follow him on twitter @johnfpaul or he Facebook.
Leave a Comment