RockAuto January Newsletter | Early Edition
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Another Happy Customer!

This is my first order with RockAuto but it will not be my last. The shipping was fast, the product top notch, and the prices great! I will recommend them to all my friends and will be a returning customer for sure.

Harold in Florida

Upcoming Events

Need goody bag items and a gift certificate for your show? RockAuto can help! Email for more information.

19 35th Annual Rod & Custom Auto & Motorcycle Show
Rock Island, IL Email
19 Winter Angel Expo Annual Vehicle/Motorcycle Show
White Pine, TN Email
20 3rd Annual Coats & Caffeine Charity Automotive Drive
Bentonville, AR Email
20 Jeff's Fun Run 10th Anniversary
Buena Park, CA Email
21 2018 YATC Cool Wheels Car Show
Deerfield Beach, FL Email
21 Cruzin' on the River Car Show
Laughlin, NV Email
26 Sno* Drift Rally
Atlanta, MI Email
27 Rock Crusher Canyon Car Show
Crystal River, FL Email
3 Motoring Through Time & Heritage Festival
Phoenix, AZ Email
3 Hot Rods & Hatters 7th Annual Car Show Festival
Lockhart, TX Email
3 6th Annual Roarin' on the River Charity Car Show
Bullhead City, AZ Email
10 Burnyzz Day of Fire Car Show
Ocala, FL Email
10 Cars for the Cure
Lake Mary, FL Email
10 Dr. George Charity Car Show
Indian Wells, CA Email
11 7th Annual Satellite Beach Lions Club Car Show
Satellite Beach, FL Email
RockAuto Now Offers Batteries!
See what we have from ACDelco
See what we have from Deka
See what we have from Exide
See what we have from Motorcraft
RockAuto Now Offers Batteries!

If you drive a 30+ year old car, waiting to replace the battery until it is eight years old and can barely spin the starter risks leaving you stranded. With a modern vehicle, a dying battery also may accelerate wear on an electrical/charging system that is already working overtime to cope with numerous computers, multiple fuel injectors per cylinder, entertainment systems, heated seats, electric power steering and/or other electronics. Do you really want that kind stranger to jump-start your computer-laden 2013 Dodge Durango with her trusty 1980 Ford Bronco? Replacing the battery should be routine preventative maintenance instead of exciting crisis management.

RockAuto now offers ACDelco, Deka, Exide and Motorcraft AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) batteries! 4X4 enthusiasts and racing teams have long relied on AGM batteries to withstand extreme vibrations off-road and on the track. AGM batteries are now an affordable, dependable, durable and safer battery for daily-drivers as well. A leaking traditional flooded lead-acid battery could always cause damage under the hood. Many newer cars have the battery mounted in the trunk (boot) or interior where leaks can create a whole new set of problems.

Lasting up to twice as long as a comparable flooded lead-acid battery, you can be assured you will get great value from your AGM battery - especially at RockAuto's reliably low prices!

To see the Battery options we have for your specific vehicle, go to the RockAuto catalog and click on the "Electrical" category. Order a replacement AGM battery today and avoid getting stranded out in the cold. (AGM batteries are extremely heat tolerant as well!)

Forum of the Month is an online forum with very active discussions about classic Lincolns. Do you need help modernizing your Lincoln to meet objectives other than strict restoration? Or, do you just need help keeping your Lincoln on the road? features a wide variety of topics ranging from basic engine, drivetrain, chassis and electrical, to more in depth topics on correct colors, plating material, inspection marks and more. This friendly forum even has the minutiae to answer questions like, "How much was the Town Car option in 1969?" and "What size of tire was standard on a 1953 Premiere?"

If you are the administrator or member of a forum and you would like to see your website featured in an upcoming newsletter and receive a discount code to share with your members, contact

Repair Mistakes & Blunders
Repair  Mistakes & Blunders

About 20 years ago, when I was only 18 and just getting started in the auto repair business, I did not know how to drive a manual transmission vehicle, so a coworker volunteered to teach me. We got out on the highway, drove some back roads and did parking lot maneuvers. When we parked inside the shop, he told me to put the transmission in neutral, apply the parking brake and shut the engine off. I did exactly what he said. The lesson went smoothly.

Being the new kid, I did not have my own service bay/lift, so I had to wait for one to open up. I went about checking over what I could on the vehicle without putting it on a lift. After a brief break, I realized that a bay had opened up, but rather than immediately claiming the open bay, I waited for the mechanic who had been using it to come back, just to make sure he did not need it anymore. What I failed to realize was that when I was on my break, he had moved the car I was working on backwards about two feet so he could get out of his bay. I also did not notice that he left it in gear with the parking brake off.

I needed to start the vehicle for some reason I cannot remember, so what did I do (remember, 18 years old)? I opened the drivers door, carefully propped my RIGHT half on the seat, pressed the clutch in with my RIGHT foot and turned the key. Why would I need the brake? The car was in neutral, or so I thought!

As I let the clutch out, the car lurched forward, and I fell to the floor. It ran over my left foot, and the driverless car crashed into the dealership's body shop.

The customer's car was totaled. As the shock slowly wore off, I explained my mistake to the service manager, leaving any mention of the other technician out. It was my fault and I owned up to it. Believe it or not, they did not fire me. My manager gave me a few days off, sans pay, and I worked at that shop for seven more years until they closed.

To this day, I cannot get into a stick shift car without instinctively putting my right foot on the brake and wiggling the shifter to make sure it is in neutral.

Steve in New York

Tell us about your most infamous auto repair blunder or unconventional fix. Use your woe to help others avoid similar mistakes or share off-the-wall solutions that worked (at least for a while!). Please email your story to Include your mailing address and if you would like a RockAuto T-Shirt (please let us know your shirt size) or Hat if we publish your story. See the T-Shirts and Hats under Tools & Universal Parts in the catalog. The story will be credited using only your first name and your vague geographic location (state, province, country, continent, etc.) so you can remain semi-anonymous!

Automotive Trivia
Automotive Trivia

A replacement Hybrid Battery for a 2009-2016 Toyota Prius currently costs roughly how much?

A. $1,200
B. $3,700
C. $8,200
D. Battery cost would exceed vehicle value, so batteries are unavailable.

Answer below

A Reliable Daily Driver Again
Tom's Story

I know the folktale about tapping a failing starter with a hammer to get it to start the engine one more time, but that was not the first thing I tried when my wife's '93 Ford Tempo failed to start in a snowy parking lot two weeks ago.

I could hear the starter relay click when the ignition key was turned. That told me the Neutral Safety Switch was working. The starting system knew the transmission was safely in park or neutral.

The electrical connections at the battery and starter were tight and clean. I used cheap steel pliers from the car's toolbox to bridge the gap between the battery and starter terminals on the Starter Solenoid. That should have turned on the starter motor, but all I got were a few weak sparks.

That is when I hit the back of the starter (end opposite the mounting bolts) with the cheap pliers. "Hit" is an exaggeration because the flimsy pliers have about as much heft as a dinner fork. The engine started right up with the next turn of the ignition key.

This Ford's starter is conveniently located behind the Bumper Cover. I offered my spouse a nice little tack hammer that she could use to tap the starter whenever it acted up. She preferred fixing the starter. It was clear that she made the right decision after the starter was disassembled and the components were inspected.

As can be seen in the photos, the spring-loaded brushes on the starter motor were heavily and unevenly worn. Tapping the starter body with the pliers was enough to jar the misaligned brushes into position one more time or maybe a few more times. I chose to install a complete Starter Motor rather than just replacing the Starter Brush on the old starter.

Tapping a starter is only a temporary fix for emergencies. Desperately transitioning from "tapping" with something like pliers to "pounding" with a hammer will only destroy the permanent magnets and possibly other parts inside a starter. Tapping got the Tempo out of the parking lot, but a fresh Starter Motor made the Tempo a reliable daily driver again!

Tom Taylor,

To read more of Tom's articles, click this link and choose from story titles on the Newsletter Archives page.

Scott's 1983 Mercedes Benz 300SD
Scott's 1983 Mercedes Benz 300SD

I know this is not the most conventional car to restore, but this is my 1983 Mercedes Benz 300SD. The ride quality and reliability of these big bodied, 5 cylinder turbo diesel engine, S-Class cars is unbelievable. I have been rebuilding and restoring it for the past three years. I have rebuilt the cylinder head, front, top end of the engine and turbo. All of the brake pads, rotors, shoes, brake hoses, oil and fuel filters, motor mounts, shocks and lots of the steering/suspension parts have been purchased from RockAuto! Half the price of the local parts stores!

Thanks for the availability, great prices and fast shipping!

Scott in Virginia

Share Your Hard Work
Do you purchase parts from RockAuto? If so, RockAuto would like to give you the opportunity to have your car or truck possibly featured in one (or occasionally more) of our publications such as the monthly newsletter, collector magnets or RockAuto social media. New, old, import, domestic, daily driver, trailer queen, classic, antique, we want to see them all! Please email with your vehicle's history, interesting details, your favorite images (tips for taking pictures of your car) and what parts from RockAuto you have used.

Automotive Trivia Answer
Automotive Trivia

A replacement Hybrid Battery for a 2009-2016 Toyota Prius currently costs roughly how much?

Answer: A. $1,200 (source; price as of 1/4/2018)
B. $3,700
C. $8,200
D. Battery cost would exceed vehicle value, so batteries are unavailable.

Back up to trivia question