April 2016 Archives - Brake & Front End
Hyundai Elantra: Rattle From Center Muffler Heat Shield

Some Elantra vehicles may exhibit a slight rattle noise condition from the center muffler heat shield underneath the vehicle.

Subaru/Honda: Rear Rotor Rubbing On Backplate After Installation

On some Subarus, Hondas and other vehicles utilizing a “drum-in-hat” type parking brake system operated in a corrosive environment (road deicers, salt, etc) the new rear brake rotor may rub against the backing plate.

rotor rubbing backplate
TPMS: Relearn Tips For GM Vehicles

Shops should use a TPMS tool that can reset the sensor positions after rotation. There is a method in the owner’s manual to “match” the sensors that involves deflating a tire for eight seconds.

Mercedes-Benz Hydraulic Suspension: Dos, Don’ts And Did-You-Knows

It doesn’t seem that long ago when the closest we came to any kind of active suspension on a Mercedes-Benz was the self-leveling rear suspension systems on the station wagons and 560 models (SEL sedan and the SEC coupe). Of course, there were some exceptions – European models and the 450SEL 6.9 starting in the late ’70s were available with hydraulic suspension at all four corners.

mercedes suspension featured
Spring Is Pothole And Bearing Season

The classic symptom of a bad wheel bearing is typically a cyclic chirping, squealing or growling noise that changes in proportion to vehicle speed. The sound may only appear or disappear at certain speeds. The noise may get worse when turning, or it may disappear momentarily. So, it’s difficult to make a diagnosis based on noise alone.

pothole bearing featured
Brake Line Inspection Tips And Tricks

No one can predict when a brake line or hose will fail. This is why inspecting brake lines should be part of every vehicle inspection. Also, spotting and replacing a corroded line before it bursts can save the driver not only from an accident, but also damage to the master cylinder and ABS modulator.

brake line inspection featured
Honda Pilot Alignment Specifications (2003-2008)

Aligning the 2003-2008 Honda Pilot is not difficult. The first-generation Pilot shares the same suspension design as the Odyssey and rear suspension design with the Accord. The Pilot is the largest vehicle Honda manufacturers, and has no TSBs issued for alignment or tire-wear problems. Most TSBs for these vehicles focus on steering column noise, but the majority of these are for a limited number of vehicles only.

honda pilot alignment featured
Scan Tools And Scopes: Diagnostic Needs

With some enhanced scan tools, it feels like I am opening Pandora’s box (or module) in some cases. The newer the car, the bigger the box of codes, PIDs and bi-directional tests. The difference in just a decade is staggering when you compare a 2005 model to one from 2015. Being an undercar specialist, you realize just how critical the right scan tool can be because most cheap OBD-II tools do not communicate with ABS, steering sensors and air suspension modules.

Vacuum Power Assist Service

Most late-model vehicles use a vacuum booster to help apply the brakes. The booster is usually located behind the master cylinder on the firewall. A leak in the vent valve can cause a reduction in the performance of the booster and increase pedal travel. A manifold vacuum of 20 inHg or greater can be achieved during deceleration. The booster chambers can be evacuated and retained at this pressure by a properly operating check valve.

GM Tech Tip: Vibration Felt Between 58-72 MPH

Some customers may report vibration in the steering wheel or the seat centered at a frequency of 10-14 Hz between 58-72 mph. First-order tire/wheel vibration may be misdiagnosed as tire/wheel assembly imbalance or excessive tire radial force variation (RFV).

Gonzo: Communication Is Key To Knowledge

Are there things mechanics keep to themselves and not tell other mechanics? I hope not, but I’m sure that even doctors and lawyers have a few secrets they’re not sharing with each other. The big secret is that there really are no secrets. What it really comes down to is knowledge.

The Copper-Free Brake Initiative

The desire for enhanced vehicle performance is often the driver of evolution in the automotive industry. But when a state-led charge to reduce water pollution caused, in part, by brake pad dust began to gain momentum in the first half of this decade, representatives from the brake manufacturing industry coordinated with representatives from the vehicle industry, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Environmental Council of the States (ECOS) to get ahead of the problem.