RockAuto September Newsletter
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Another Happy Customer!
Another Happy Customer!

Wow! I ordered a timing belt, water pump and component kit... I am impressed by the fast shipping, price and quality of service. It's my second order at RockAuto and won't be the last!

David in Canada

Upcoming Events
Upcoming Events

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

27 Telluride Festival of Cars & Colors
Telluride, CO Email
28 Vintage Yamaha Rally
Stecoah, NC Email
28 2018 VCOA National Meet
Stratton Mt, VT Email
29 Cops & Rodders Car Show Fundraiser
Washington, MA Email
29 AFC 22nd Annual Classic & Sports Car Rally
East Setauket, NY Email
29 Piper Community Festival Car & Truck Show
Kansas City, KS Email
29 EAA Sixth Annual Fall Fly-in-Car Show
Zanesville, OH Email
29 Stockton Auto Show & Family Festival
Stockton, CA Email
30 Just Cruise-In Wheel Days
Brookfield, NY Email
30 Cincinnati VW Club Annual Reunion
Cincinnati, OH Email
30 Spokane Speedway
Spokane, WA Email
6 CORSA West FunCours
Sylmar, CA Email
6 Chicken & Bread Car Show
Bowie, TX Email
6 Cruise for a Cause Fall Ford Fest
Wisconsin Dells, WI Email
6 Eagle Field Runway Drags
Firebaugh, CA Email
6 Summerville Dream Machines
Summerville, SC Email
6 Southeast Willys Jeep Get Together
Mills River, NC Email
7 Colo's Classic Car show
Powell, OH Email
7 Rock-N-Rods Classic Car Show
Yonkers, NY Email
7 Shawano Flea Market Car Show
Shawano, WI Email
7 Hot Rods & Harleys
Hopkintop, IA Email
7 Classy Chassis Open Car Show
Helotes, TX Email
Coated Brake Rotors
Coated rotor group

Some minor surface rust is often present on new vehicles' brake rotors when they drive out of the factory. What hurts braking performance is when long term exposure to rain, snow and especially road salt cause severe rust that:

  • Pits rotor braking surfaces leaving less contact area for the brake pads.
  • Blocks airflow through cooling vanes causing overheating and brake fade.
  • Creates a ridge of rust along the outer edges of the brake pad leading to noise and/or vibration.
  • "Jacks" the rotor away from the wheel hub causing excessive lateral runout (often described as "warped rotors"), vibration, brake pedal pulsation, abnormal tire wear, noise and other problems.

People also simply hate to see rusty brakes through the beautiful open-design wheels installed on newer vehicles.

Many of RockAuto's brake rotor manufacturers have developed new coating technologies to protect rotor performance and appearance. Coatings are often electrically charged so they are drawn into even the deepest recesses in the rotor's cooling vanes and permanently affixed.

Coated rotor group in catalog

These rotor and Rotor & Brake Pad Kit choices are now grouped together under a "Coated (Additional Protection For Rust Prone Areas)" quality heading in the catalog. Click "Info" next to a rotor or kit to learn about the manufacturer's unique coating technology. To see all the brake options we have for your specific vehicle, go to the RockAuto catalog and click on the “Brake & Wheel Hub” category!

Forum of the Month
Dodge Forum

Whether you are a current Dodge owner, shopping for a Dodge or just interested in this member of the Mopar family, Dodge Forum is a website for you.

The membership is diverse, covering people from various countries, backgrounds, ages and experiences. You will find topics covering Dodge cars, trucks, vans, SUVs, CUVs, muscle cars, classics and even the K-Car. Everything from detailing to technical DIY information is shared by the friendly members of this popular forum.

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

Many years ago, early in my wrench turning and learning, I had a 1967 Thunderbird with a 390ci engine. I always tried to do my own repairs, and this time it was something that I had experience with, a tune-up. Everything went smoothly even though I had the distraction of my girlfriend looking over my shoulder asking a never ending barrage of questions.

I finished, put away my tools, cleaned up, and we walked to a friend's for dinner. The next day, I was leaving to go to work and started the car. The Thunderbird would barely run and had an unusual lope at idle and poor acceleration. But I had to get to work and drove it anyway. I was talking to a friend at work who also was a bit of a gear-head about how awfully my car was running, and he volunteered to take a look at it.

He drove off and quickly returned. Immediately he popped the hood, poked around for a couple of minutes and announced problem solved. It turned out that I had only connected the left bank of spark plug wires. The right side was just lying near their respective plugs. To this day, that same friend asks if I am firing on all cylinders. I have never repeated that little oversight in the ensuing 40 years.

Allan in Georgia

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

What does "Chicken Tax" refer to?

A. The Renewable Fuels Standard Act of 2007 that requires corn ethanol to be blended into the US transportation fuel supply.

B. A 25% tariff on imported light trucks imposed by President Lyndon Johnson in 1963 and still in effect.

C. Accepting the cost of a speeding ticket rather than risking jail time, injuring others, death and other problems by trying to outrun the police.

Answer below

Helping Hybrids Stay Affordable
Tom's Story

I used to be leery of buying pre-owned hybrid vehicles. My buy-and-hold vehicular investment strategy and my family's tendency to get sentimentally attached means we tend to keep cars for a long time. Today, my wife headed off to work in "Wall-E," the '93 Ford Tempo that we planned to only keep for a couple of years when we bought it in 2008. What if we bought a used hybrid, named it "Bess," and then in just a few short years its giant battery died? Would the kids tearfully watch old Bess get towed off to a junkyard or would we throw financial reason to the wind and send Bess, along with a blank check, to a car dealership?

The cost of owning a used hybrid is no longer such a mystery. has carried replacement Prius batteries for years. Batteries have steadily become available for other popular hybrids as well. Battery prices typically rise as vehicle size increases, but some smaller vehicles have higher capacity battery designs that may cost more. Here are a few battery price examples: 2008 Toyota Prius ~$1,020, 2008 Nissan Altima ~$2,038, and 2008 Ford Escape/Mercury Mariner/ Mazda Tribute ~$3,581. Just look for "Hybrid Battery" under "Electrical" to see what a replacement battery for a specific hybrid model costs.

Hybrid Batteries
Chevy, Ford & Toyota Hybrid Batteries

I found further good news when I did some research on used car pricing sites. The future cost of replacing the hybrid battery is in most cases built into the purchase price. Buying a used hybrid and a battery might cost less than buying a conventionally powered used model that uses more fuel, is slower and might have come with less luxurious options.

For example, I found the "trade-in value" for a 2010 Chevy Tahoe Hybrid was $14,300, while the trade-in value for a 2010 Tahoe LTZ was $21,179. If it cost ~$6,000 less to buy the used hybrid, then that savings would be more than enough to buy a replacement battery (~$2,625 at if necessary.

The used hybrid model was always the least expensive choice for the handful of vehicles I randomly chose to research. Sometimes the price difference was not enough to completely cover the cost of a replacement battery, but it cut the potential expense down to the cost of a new set of tires or another fix-it-up cost that any individual used car could need.

For example, the trade-in value for a 2010 Toyota Camry Hybrid was $5,437. The trade-in value for a 4-cylinder 2010 Camry SE was $5,967. A replacement hybrid battery for the 2010 Camry costs ~$1,365 at A used hybrid Camry buyer saves ~$500 on the vehicle's purchase price now but has to pay ~$1,365 for a battery sometime in the future. Still not a bad deal considering the hybrid is faster, goes 10 more miles on a gallon of fuel in the city and any individual used car might eventually need $865 in random repairs/maintenance ($1,365 - $500= $865).

There is now no reason to lie awake at night wondering if ten-year-old hybrids are going to the junkyard or into limbo. What a waste of resources that would be. It is great that along with the other vehicles on the road, RockAuto is helping hybrids stay affordable, reliable and fun to drive!

Tom Taylor,

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

Michel's 1984 Toyota Celica Supra
Michel's 1984 Toyota Celica Supra

This is the car I lusted after as a teenager, a 1984 Toyota Celica Supra. When I reached driving age, this model was a few years out of production, but still way too expensive for a student. I promised myself I would own one someday.

I waited until I was more settled and had the funds to purchase, maintain and store it. In my mid-30s, that time had finally come. I found this excellent example in 2010. The body was in overall good shape. I spent many hours polishing the oxidized paint and was able to avoid a complete repaint. It turned out fantastic!

However, I found out the car was very very original. It still had the original front tires from 1984, and though they held air fine, they were dry and cracked. Many of the mechanical parts were also original, and though overall probably still reliable, parts can wear out with age. RockAuto helped me with power steering lines, belts, filters, brakes, cooling system, ignition, gaskets and certainly more that I am forgetting. I am in Canada and despite the exchange rate and shipping prices, RockAuto is often cheaper than our local stores for the exact same part and brand. That is IF they can get the part at all.

My Supra only has average horsepower and performance compared to modern cars, but it does draw a lot of attention. Unless the engine suffers an unexpected catastrophic failure, I plan to keep it as close to original as possible. Thanks to RockAuto, I can keep this 34-year-old car on the road and enjoy it.

Michel in Canada

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, RockAuto social media or other commercial use. 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

What does "Chicken Tax" refer to?

A. The Renewable Fuels Standard Act of 2007 that requires corn ethanol to be blended into the US transportation fuel supply.

Answer: B. A 25% tariff on imported light trucks imposed by President Lyndon Johnson in 1963 and still in effect. (The 1960s trade dispute started with French tariffs on imported US chickens.)

C. Accepting the cost of a speeding ticket rather than risking jail time, injuring others, death and other problems by trying to outrun the police.

Back up to trivia question