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Another Happy Customer!

I'm one of those people who likes the challenge of seeing how long a vehicle can be made to last, and this of course takes replacement parts...

RockAuto takes the time to find obsolete, closeout parts, group them for your make and model and let you know.

I have an '89 Toyota LE 4X4 van that I hope to drive until I can no longer safely do so. "Van-essa" is my baby and I hope to add many more to her 306,000 miles, and RockAuto will be a big help!

Keith in Oregon



Upcoming Events
If you would like your event featured here e-mail with details.

5th Annual Princeton Swap Meet & Car Show
5/17/2014
Princeton, MN
e-mail

5th Annual Spring Thaw
5/17/2014
Windber, PA
e-mail

Lone Star Street Rod State Meet
5/18/2014
Fredericksburg, TX
e-mail

ASHRAE Anthracite Chapter Car Show
5/18/2014
West Hazleton, PA
e-mail

6th Annual Texas Hoedown
5/23/2014
Hempstead, TX
e-mail

Riverfront Run Car Show/Poker Run & Music on the Center
5/23/2014
Madison, IN
e-mail

Spring Fling Corvette Show & Shine Car Show
5/24/2014
Bedford, NH
e-mail

OGOC 2014 Event
5/24/2014
Oshawa, Canada
e-mail

Ye Old Mill Rod Run Picnic
5/25/2014
Utica, OH
e-mail

Hampton Roads Mopar Enthusiasts Summer Bash Car, Truck & Bike Show
5/25/2014
Williamsburg, VA
e-mail

Fun Run 2014 29th Annual Car Show & Swap Meet
5/30/2014
Escanaba, MI
e-mail

2nd Annual Monadock Up in Smoke BBQ Car Show
5/30/2014
Keene, NH
e-mail

Chicagoland Mustang Club
5/31/2014
Downers Grove, IL
e-mail

1st Annual Car Show
5/31/2014
Tannerd, AL
e-mail

Northwest Ohio Street Machines "33rd Super Street Sunday"
6/1/2014
Holland, OH
e-mail

British By the Sea 2014
6/1/2014
Waterford, CT
e-mail

Four Seasons A/C Compressor & Component Kits

See what we have from Four Seasons

RockAuto now offers TechSelect A/C Compressor & Component Kits from Four Seasons! Repairing the A/C system correctly normally requires replacing several components at once - not just the component that failed. Four Seasons TechSelect A/C Kits make getting the right components easy. Instead of ordering each part separately, TechSelect Kits allow you to order what you need with a single click. A TechSelect A/C Kit will typically contain an A/C Compressor, A/C Receiver Drier/Accumulator, and an Orifice Tube or Expansion Valve. Specific contents vary depending on the car or truck, so be sure to check the "Info" button beside the part number to see what is included in your kit.

Image is of a typical kit(s); kit contents vary by application

TechSelect A/C Kits are available for a wide range of applications ranging from classics to recent models. Vehicles from the '67 Chevelle (factory or dealer installed A/C), to the 2012 Nissan Pathfinder, to the 1985 Pontiac 6000 are covered. Four Seasons can help you keep your A/C System in great condition or get it running again just in time for summer heat waves. Find these complete A/C kits in the "Heat & Air Conditioning" category of the RockAuto catalog.






Acme Auto Top

See what we have from Acme Auto Top

RockAuto now carries Acme Auto Top products! Acme Auto Top Company is a family owned and operated automotive soft trim manufacturer, based in Long Beach, California, that has been in business since 1948.  All patterns have been made from original factory designs with an effort to maintain pleat styles, factory attachment points, and fit and finish.  Only original manufacturer grade materials are used in production, ensuring quality and longevity.   

Acme Auto Top products

Whether you are looking for a Headliner for a 1998 Camaro, a Soft Top for a 1986 Suzuki Samurai, a Convertible Top for a 1963 Chrysler 300, or a complete set of Leather Seat Covers for a 2011 Buick Lucerne, find Acme Auto Top parts in the "Body-Interior" or "Body-Exterior" categories of the RockAuto catalog.






Forum of the Month

311s.org

311s.org is a site devoted to the Datsun Sports Roadster 1962-1970. It was started in 2001 and has been growing every year. We have a very active forum discussing all aspects of our beloved sports cars. There is a Roadster Registry where we have roadsters from all over the world registered. We also have a Tech Wiki that contains a wealth of info from body work to mechanical and everything in between. Some folks think we drive MGs or Austin Healeys but we politely set the record straight. Our main goal is the camaraderie of sharing our experiences and keeping these little cars on the road for years to come.


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 cynthia@rockauto.com.






Repair Mistakes & Blunders

Ouch!

It was the mid 1980s, and my first car was an MG MGB. My buddy and I were itching to do an oil change. Previously, when we changed the oil in his Dodge Dart Swinger, we had learned the hard way that it is necessary to replace the drain plug before refilling with new oil (his dad wasn't too crazy about the big oil stain on his driveway from our learning adventure).

So my friend crawled under my car with a drain pan and unbolted the drain plug. We were excited that not a drop landed on my dad's driveway! I was working on replacing the old filter at that time. After he replaced the drain plug, I started to fill the crankcase. I poured the correct amount of oil in and was a little puzzled when the dipstick was reading kind of high. We theorized that the oil had to circulate through the motor and filter, and it would then be OK. Test drive time.

We took off with the top down, feeling good about our automotive prowess. But after driving for about twenty minutes, the car started to make a groaning noise. It got louder and louder and was consistent with the speed. We headed home a little worried.

I checked the oil, and it was still high. It hadn't settled as we thought it might. I then had to do what most 17-year-old males dread, ask my dad to help. He came out, and when I explained what we experienced, he asked my buddy to show him the drain plug he had removed. Of course, it was the transmission drain plug!

Luckily, a fill of fresh gear oil was all the attention that poor transmission needed, and the over fill of oil didn't damage the engine either.

I haven't made that particular mistake again.

Richard 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 e-mail your story to flamur@rockauto.com. 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

Where did Cadillac get its name?

A. Cadillac was named after Antoine de La Mothe, Sieur de Cadillac, the French explorer that founded Detroit in 1701.

B. Cadillac was founded by and named after Basam Kadilak. The spelling was changed to make the word sound "less abrupt."

C. The company name was originally Caudillo, Spanish for leader. That name was often mispronounced by English speakers, thus a new name, Cadillac, was created from scratch by the company's marketing office in 1904.


Answer below






Weak Point in the Cooling System

RockAuto

Radiator hoses and heater hoses are made out of better materials and last longer than ever. However, it still just takes one weak point in the cooling system to cause leaks, overheating or other mayhem. My first car, a ’77 Dodge, taught me the weak link on Chrysler small block V8s is the thermostat bypass hose. That smallish hose with the big bend in it failed catastrophically with no warning. The engine overheated and needed new head gaskets by the time I had safely pulled over. Ever since that infamous night decades ago, I replace the thermostat bypass hoses on my old Chryslers an additional time between the complete hose changes.

Newer engines often have unique cooling system plumbing. Identifying potential weak points or knowing what hoses and other parts should be routinely replaced may not be obvious. Looking at the parts available under "Cooling System" in the RockAuto catalog can be a good way to identify parts that are unique to a particular engine. The service manuals (found under "Literature" in the catalog) can help explain how an engine’s cooling system is laid out.

As radiators got buried deeper in the fronts of newer cars and manufacturers strove to use the same engines in more vehicles, it became more common to see unique plastic parts built into the cooling system plumbing. A plastic piece might splice hoses together or be the outlet for the radiator cap. Some of these plastic parts might be unique to one or two car models.

Dorman Toyota coolant hose splice
Toyota Coolant Hose Splice

I have nothing against plastic engine parts. I keep expecting the plastic valve cover on my wife’s ’93 Ford Tempo to cause problems, but it just keeps happily sitting there doing its job. Whether they are made of plastic or metal, some unique cooling system parts just suffer from stresses, similar to that sharp bend in my Dodge’s bypass hose, which make them failure prone.

The Thermostat Housing/Water Outlet is an example of a part that might not be recognizable on a newer engine. It could be a complex plastic molding with multiple hose nipples and sensor ports. It might also be the outlet for the radiator cap. The thermostat housing may still be a simple part but could mount to a very complex Lower Body housing.

Standard Motor Products TechSmart Thermostat Housing/Water Outlet
Ford Thermostat Housing/Water Outlet

The plastic piece the upper radiator hose connects to may not even be the thermostat housing. For example, on some relatively recent Chrysler engines the thermostat housing is down low and the upper radiator hose connects to something called a Coolant Air Bleeder. This complex part with multiple hose nipples includes a handy bleeder valve for removing air from the cooling system. Unfortunately, the original Chrysler Coolant Air Bleeder was prone to leaks between its plastic pieces.

Dorman Chrysler Thermostat Housing
Chrysler Coolant Air Bleeder

The hose clamps are something else to think more about. Thermostat housings, radiators and other cooling system parts often now have plastic nipples that can be cracked if the hose clamp is over tightened. If the original hose clamps cannot be safely reused, then avoid over tightening new clamps and/or use clamps that spread the tension more evenly such as Constant Tension and T-Bolt type clamps. Find new hose clamps in the Tools & Universal Parts tab under Plumbing.

Gates T-Bolt Hose Clamp
T-Bolt Hose Clamp

One final tip is to consider soaking some plastic cooling system parts in hot water before installation to ensure a better fit. Be sure to read the “Boiled Plastic” article in this past newsletter: June 2012 RockAuto Newsletter for more on that tip from my plastics engineer dad.

Tom Taylor,
RockAuto.com


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






Larry's 1968 Plymouth Roadrunner

Larry's 1968 Plymouth Roadrunner

I purchased this Roadrunner eight years ago. I LOVE it, and so does my son. It looked good when we got it, but it didn't run very well. It sat in a garage for several years. I really wanted to "re-do" the engine but couldn't afford it. Checking prices periodically and being unable to get what I needed, I thought I would never get it done. Then I found RockAuto! WOW, great prices! You made it possible for my son and I to re-do the entire engine compartment. We took everything off the block, cleaned, sanded, primed and painted it. Then we replaced EVERYTHING with parts from RockAuto!

Spark plugs, wires, engine gaskets, PCV valve, alternator, power steering pump, fan, belts, hoses, water pump, cap, regulator, master brake cylinder, steering gear box, brake lines, filters and I'm sure lots of other things that I can't think of.

Thank you RockAuto! I tell everyone I know about you. You "Rock!"

Larry and Kevin in Texas


Share Your Hard Work

Do you purchase parts from RockAuto? If so, RockAuto would like to feature you and your car or truck in our 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 e-mail flamur@rockauto.com with your vehicle's history, interesting details, your favorite images and what parts from RockAuto you have used.






Let RockAuto Help

Let RockAuto Help

Are you organizing a car show or other auto related event? From goody bag stuffers to gift certificates...we can help. We can even publicize your event in our newsletter.

Just send an e-mail to marketing@rockauto.com with information about your show.






Automotive Trivia Answer

Automotive Trivia

Where did Cadillac get its name?

Answer: A. Cadillac was named after Antoine de La Mothe, Sieur de Cadillac, the French explorer that founded Detroit in 1701.

B. Cadillac was founded by and named after Basam Kadilak. The spelling was changed to make the word sound "less abrupt."

C. The company name was originally Caudillo, Spanish for leader. That name was often mispronounced by English speakers, thus a new name, Cadillac, was created from scratch by the company's marketing office in 1904.



Back up to trivia question




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