2 years ago

What's Causing Car to Stay Cool?

Dear Car Talk:

I've been driving cars for far longer than I'd like to admit, and I've never had this happen: I drove a few miles to the market in my 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee, and normally by the time I get there, the temperature Mobile Mechanic Pros - Redmond Oregon gauge has climbed to where it should be. This time, it got only halfway there. It was in the same place by the time I got home. The next day, I drove about 70 miles, and the same thing happened. Only when I sit at idle for a few minutes (maybe four to five) will the needle start to climb a bit. But once I start driving again, down it goes. Now, I've had this car overheat a few times (I needed a new thermostat), but never have I had any car stay cold. What's the deal here? Is it OK to keep driving it? And how expensive do you think it'll be to get it back to normal?

-- Catherine

You may need another new thermostat, Catherine.

Your old thermostat failed because it failed to open -- and therefore to allow coolant to flow through the radiator and cool off. Your current one may be opening too early, or may be stuck open and allowing too much cooling. That's the most likely explanation for a car that runs cold.

It's OK to keep driving it for now, but the reason thermostats exist is to regulate the engine temperature, because engines tend to run most efficiently at right around 200 degrees F.

So don't be surprised if your mileage drops. Although on a 2004 Grand Cherokee, you might not notice the drop from 12 mpg to 11.

Start by having your mechanic verify that your gauge is accurately representing the temperature of the engine. He'll do that by using his own pyrometer to check the engine temperature.

If the engine is actually running at a normal temperature while the gauge says it's cold, then you may need a new gauge or a new temperature-sending unit.

But if the gauge is accurate, and the engine really is running cold, then I'd change the thermostat and see if that fixes it. I'm guessing that's all it is, and that's cheap.


2 years ago

Get the Expert Lowdown on Retaining Walls (20 photos)

Retaining walls come in many different forms, all with varying cost implications, so lets explore your options and present some great design tips to help you manage your sloping site.

Know your retaining wall

When we have a completely flat block we often add height and interest with raised planter boxes and feature walls, so dont be scared of retaining walls, embrace them. You dont always require extensive retaining walls either, as maintaining the natural slope, or a combination of the slope and more strategic use of retaining structures, can also create a great look. There a

2 years ago

Is the Modernica Case Study Planter Worth $200+?

I recently splurged on a case study planter from Modernica.

It was $189 USD, which is about $250 Canadian (yikes), but at least the shipping was free! Because I live on a part of Lake Superior that is close to the US/Canadian border, I have access to a US address for parcels, which makes shopping online a lot easier because I can have things shipped within the States or Canada. When I cross the border on my way back, sometimes I have to pop into the CBSA office and pay HST (although they usually wave folks by if the value of goods is under $100). This time I had to pay tax and as I walked ou

2 years ago

Tips On Improving Your Home For A More Comfortable Life

It is vital that your home is a place of pride and joy to you. Staying in your home should make you be happy. People who work from home really need to make sure they love and enjoy being there. A great way to increase how you feel inside is by completing home projects that need to be done.

First and foremost, you should feel happy in your home. If you are like many people, there are more than a few things in your house that you are unhappy with. There is no good reason to live with that dissatisfaction. True happiness comes when you are satisfied with your home. If you are unhappy with something in your house, like an old bathroom that needs to be remodeled, take the time to change it into something that you really love.

Sometimes, reorganizing is insufficient to address a lack of space. When this happens, consider adding an expansion to your home. Have you considering relocating a wall within your http://seanddowling.tumblr.com/ home. Even minimal movement can add a massive change to the appearance of the room. Opening up more space in your home can help boost your mood and decrease your overall stress levels.

Building some recreational areas can increase your home's value. While expensive additions like pools or hot tubs are great additions, don't discount the value of adding more budget-friendly options like an exercise room or even a basketball hoop. Your family will really enjoy these newly built areas.

Have you thought about the lighting in your home? You can change lighting easily and it can really bring a room to life. Change old bulbs to have better lighting. Or, with a little more complexity, you could refresh the actual lighting fixtures. This would really change the style and appearance of your home.

Green areas can add color and beauty to your outdoor spaces. The outside of your house is just as important as the inside, so pick a small place in your garden and turn it into your own personal sanctuary. Not only does a garden improve the appearance and value of your home, but it also gives you a relaxing place to entertain. As gardens are to individual taste, consider which one may be the most appealing to you. Options include growing a patch of colorful flowers, or some herbs if you are a constant cook, or even a vegetable garden to provide some relief from http://seanddowling.tumblr.com/ those expensive grocery bills.

By making a few minimal changes to your home, its appeal can be dramatically changed. A fresh coat of paint, a new roof, and new windows can make your home look like it was built yesterday, while saving you money.

It is important that your home lives up to your expectations, seeing as you spend so much time there. So when you make home improvements, this will benefit you not only financially, but also mentally.