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Another Happy Customer!

ROCKAUTO ROCKS! Where have you been all my life?!

When researching Struts/Shocks information, I found a link to RockAuto through the Monroe website. I saved 43% over my local auto parts store! Now I can get a manicure...

Suzanne in Ohio



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

East TX AMC Cruise In
5/9/2015
Lufkin, TX
e-mail

Mississippi Beach Cruisers Car Club "Honoring our Veterans" Open Car Show
5/9/2015
Biloxi, MS
e-mail

Loafers Car Club Annual Car Show
5/9/2015
Hannibal, MO
e-mail

1st Annual AMC Spring Meet
5/9/2015
St. Petersburg, FL
e-mail

Southeastern Virginia Mustang Club 8th Annual Spring Show
5/9/2015
Virginia Beach, VA
e-mail

Morelli Grand European Car Show
5/9/2015
Oklahoma City, OK
e-mail

15th Annual Timeless Cruizers Cruise In before the Car Show
5/9/2015
Cedar Grove, NC
e-mail

Seymour High School CARR Club - Hotrods & Academics
5/9/2015
Seymour, IN
e-mail

Adairville Chamber of Commerce Car & Tractor Show
5/9/2015
Adairville, KY
e-mail

Rolling Relics Annual Car & Motorcycle Show
5/9/2015
Inoykern, CA
e-mail

Salem Eagles Benefit Dinner & Car Cruise
5/10/2015
Salem, OH
e-mail

4th Annual Summer Car Show Sponsored by Hoffmantown Body Shop
5/10/2015
Albuguerque, NM
e-mail

Jeneua Dipsticks Car Club Annual Car Show
5/10/2015
Juneau, AK
e-mail

National Kidney Foundation Benefit Car Show
5/16/2015
Dundalk, MD
e-mail

Windy City BMW Autobahn Country Club 2015 - Driving School & Car Gathering
5/16/2015
Joliet, IL
e-mail

5th Annual Old Fashioned Block Party & Classic Car Show
5/16/2015
Milwaukee, WI
e-mail

Lincoln Tech Display & Car Show
5/16/2015
Philadelphia, PA
e-mail

Prescott Valley Home Depot 2nd Annual Classic Car Show
5/16/2015
Prescott Valley, AZ
e-mail

Linda Lions Annual Car Show & Swap Meet
5/16/2015
Marysville, CA
e-mail

Heritage High School Annual Charity Car Show
5/16/2015
Ringgold, GA
e-mail

7th Annual Laird Noller Ford All Makes & Models Car Show
5/16/2015
Topkea, KS
e-mail

National Road Corvette Club Show All Corvette Show
5/16/2015
Troy, OH
e-mail

1st Annual River City Mission Charity Car Show "Driving to End Homlessness"
5/16/2015
Puducah, KY
e-mail

159th Van Wert County Fair Auction
5/16/2015
Van Wert, OH
e-mail

Kathy Weed Mem Safety Insp & Downs Open House
5/17/2015
Wyoming, MI
e-mail

25th Annual Monumental Bug Bash
5/17/2015
La Porte, TX
e-mail

Wind Gap "Cruise to the Gap" 31st Anniversary Show
5/17/2015
Wind Gap, PA
e-mail

Upper Saddle River Antique Car Show & Flea Market
5/17/2015
Paramus, NJ
e-mail

Bob Hope USO Ontario Car & Motorcycle Show
5/17/2015
Ontario, CA
e-mail

Cardone Ultra Premium Brake Calipers

See what we have from A-1 Cardone

RockAuto now carries CARDONE Ultra Premium Calipers. If you are tired of rusty calipers wrecking the look of your premium wheels, it may be time to consider these premium calipers with exclusive weather-proof coating that protects against rust and corrosion. This powder coated silver finish maintains its nice appearance over time and complements any factory or custom alloy wheels.

CARDONE Ultra Premium Calipers include all required installation hardware, including banjo bolts and mounting bracket, to ensure a quick and easy installation (choose your preferred brake pads separately). Cardone parts are remanufactured, which means these calipers provide optimal looks & performance at a value price.

CARDONE Ultra Premium calipers can be found for a variety of vehicles ranging from a 1968 Chevrolet El Camino to a 2014 Ford F-550 Super Duty. These calipers can be found under the "Brake/Wheel Hub" category in the RockAuto catalog.

Additionally, Cardone is welcoming do-it-yourself consumers to enter The CARDONE Ultra "Car Giveaway" Sweepstakes with a 2015 Mustang GT as a grand prize. You can view details of the CARDONE sweepstakes here.






K Source Camera System 25% Rebate

See what we have from K Source

A color monitor built into the new rear view mirror gives a crystal clear view from the back up camera when you shift into reverse. Choose the VS55020 system and also get further protection from accident/insurance disputes with a forward facing camera with digital video recorder (DVR), GPS tracking and more! K Source cameras are about as easy to install as a typical car stereo system.

Through 6/2/2015, an instant 25% rebate will automatically be deducted from the price in your shopping cart for:

  • K Source VS8 back up camera system
  • K Source VS55020 system that includes both a back up camera and a forward facing camera with DVR

Find K Source automotive camera systems, specs and instructions in "Accessories" under the "Tools & Universal Parts" tab or simply click here.






Forum of the Month

Crown Vic Nation

Crown Vic Nation - An enthusiast website devoted to the Ford Panther platform, serving owners of the Ford Crown Victoria, Mercury Grand Marquis, Mercury Marauder and Lincoln Town Car. We have the latest news, do-it-yourself information, technical talk and more! Meet other owners from your area, post images of your vehicle and ask questions. Register on our forums and join the conversation for free!


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 flamur@rockauto.com.






Repair Mistakes & Blunders

Ouch!

Frustrating fixes are sometimes the best learning experiences.
 
I was trying to fix my neighbor's rough idling 1976 Toyota Corolla. It seemed to be a carburetor problem, so I took the suspect assembly apart and found a small fragment of wood(!) blocking the idle jet. Thinking I was finished, I buttoned up the job and fired up the Corolla, only to find that the motor was still idling roughly. 
 
So, back to square one. I replaced the points, set the dwell, checked ignition timing and replaced the spark plugs - all to no avail! The shaking motor got new plug wires (even though the old ones tested out fine), but still the rough idling! Finally, in desperation, thinking I had a high-voltage leak somewhere in the cap or coil, I turned off the lights in my garage and found no sparks around those parts. But, there was a small yellow spark on the side of the distributor. The distributors on these Corollas had a condenser mounted on the OUTSIDE of the housing, grounding through a small bolt. I reached down to the sparking part, and when I touched the condenser, the sparking stopped and the motor smoothed right out! A quick tightening of the bolt, and the car was fixed, but all the previous 6 hours of carb cleaning and electrical trouble-shooting were mostly wasted, just because of a small loose screw!

Bob in Alberta, Canada

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

Which of these was an option on 1969 Chevrolet cars?

A. Big Rig Air Horn: Multiple diaphragms converted intake manifold vacuum into air pressure to power an air horn. There was no reservoir to retain air pressure, so the horn was quieter when the engine revved faster and vacuum dropped.

B. Mirror Shade: Reflective mirrored window tint was applied to the rear window and rear side windows on station wagons.

C. Liquid Tire Chain: Two canisters mounted in the trunk held liquid ether. The driver pushed a button on the dash to spray ether on the rear tires to improve traction on icy roads. (Some drivers sprayed bleach to create smoky tire spinning burnouts.)

D. All the above



Answer below





Like the Clatter of an Old Diesel Engine

RockAuto

A couple of weeks ago, the engine in my wife’s ’93 Ford Tempo started making a rattling sound. The noise was loudest when the car was stopped with the transmission in gear. Turning on the AC or switching on the headlights made the noise a little louder. It almost sounded like the clatter of an old diesel engine. The noise echoed in the parking garage at my wife’s office and raised people's eyebrows. Repairing the Ford became my top priority!

The sounds seemed to be coming from the serpentine belt area, but even using an automotive stethoscope, I could not pinpoint the source. My diagnosis relied on background knowledge. The Ford 2.3L in the ’92 to ’94 Tempo and Topaz is known for going through original equipment (OE) harmonic balancers as often as every 50,000 miles (80,000 km). The racket was the signal that it was time for the Tempo to get another harmonic balancer.

The harmonic balancer is also the pulley on the end of the crankshaft that turns the serpentine belt that spins the AC, alternator and other accessories. In most harmonic balancers, a layer of rubber is sandwiched between the metal piece that mounts on the crankshaft and a metal weight. The rubber and weight dampen vibrations running up the length of the crankshaft. This makes the engine quieter and more pleasant to drive, and it makes the crankshaft, front and rear seals, bearings and other parts that touch the crankshaft last longer.

The rubber donut inside the Ford’s harmonic balancer was ripped in two
The rubber donut inside the Fordís harmonic balancer was ripped in two

Harmonic balancer designs vary. Some last for the life of the engine. Look under the "Engine" category in the RockAuto catalog to see if a replacement harmonic balancer is available for your specific vehicle. Harmonic balancers usually fail when the rubber material falls apart. As seen in the photo above, the rubber donut inside the Ford’s harmonic balancer was ripped in two. Even though the harmonic balancer was wrecked inside, the pulley was still firmly bolted to the crankshaft. It was not visibly wobbling. The only distress signal was the annoying rattling noise that seemed to come from everywhere. Other harmonic balancer designs might visibly shake, stop spinning, fall off, damage the crankshaft position sensor or tear up the serpentine belt when they fail. There is a lot more engineering that goes into a harmonic balancer than I would have guessed.

To replace the harmonic balancer, I needed to take off the starter, wedge a screwdriver in a slot in the side of the flywheel so the crankshaft could not spin, and then remove the single large bolt that held the harmonic balancer to the end of the crankshaft. (A harmonic balancer puller tool is needed to remove some types of harmonic balancers.) Or, that is all I would have needed to do if the engine had not been in the car. The official Ford replacement instructions can be paraphrased as, “Start removing the engine and transmission and stop when you can finally get to that big bolt!”

Unfortunately, the harmonic balancer is less than one inch (2.5 cm) from the Tempo’s body. The Tempo’s previous owner’s repair receipts showed a Ford dealer had charged $679.28 to install the most recent harmonic balancer. That price included $211.49 for just the part, but it still appeared the repair would take hours of professional mechanic labor or days of my do-it-yourself labor. (RockAuto’s harmonic balancers for this Ford start at less than $60 and hopefully will last longer than the OE part.)

Lisle Corp exhaust manifold spreader
Lisle Corp exhaust manifold spreader

Fortunately, there are a few videos online with tips on how to replace the Tempo’s harmonic balancer. One professional mechanic suggested using an "exhaust manifold spreader" to help push the engine away from the body. RockAuto has a spreader by Lisle Corp. After I removed the right engine mount, the spreader was able to shift the engine (see photo above) just enough to open up access to the bolt on the crankshaft. It was much faster and safer than removing all the engine and transmission mounts and jockeying the engine around using a floor jack. The Lisle spreader tool was originally intended for wrestling with warped exhaust manifolds on small-block Chevrolets. It is the sort of handy, simple, professionals-know-about-it tool I am glad to have in my tool box!

Tom Taylor,
RockAuto.com

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





Pete's 1983 Camaro
Pete's 1983 Camaro

I have owned this 1983 Camaro since 1991. It is a somewhat unique version with a 2.5 liter 4 cylinder engine.

The car has very special meaning to me, as my father and I worked on it together when I was in high school. Now my children and I enjoy working on it and driving it.

It takes a lot of time and effort to keep it on the road. We have used RockAuto for several of our needs, including a distributor, engine control module, brake parts, steering components, door handles and a brake booster. Simply stated, some of these parts are just not available anywhere else, especially the OE style replacements.

Thank you for making it possible to keep an old car on the road and allowing me the joy of sharing memories of time spent with my father with another generation!

Pete in Ohio



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 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...RockAuto 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

Which of these was an option on 1969 Chevrolet cars?

A. Big Rig Air Horn: Multiple diaphragms converted intake manifold vacuum into air pressure to power an air horn. There was no reservoir to retain air pressure, so the horn was quieter when the engine revved faster and vacuum dropped.

B. Mirror Shade: Reflective mirrored window tint was applied to the rear window and rear side windows on station wagons.


Answer: C. Liquid Tire Chain: Two canisters mounted in the trunk held liquid ether. The driver pushed a button on the dash to spray ether on the rear tires to improve traction on icy roads. (Some drivers sprayed bleach to create smoky tire spinning burnouts.) This option only cost $23.20 but was still not popular enough to continue beyond 1969.

D. All the above



Back up to trivia question



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