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Old 08-31-2002, 11:15 AM
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EricSilver EricSilver is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Fairfax, VA
Posts: 1,249
Hi Priority

Something of very high priority would be to check your Voltage Regulator. This is an incredibly easy thing to access and replace (if needed). It screws in to the back of your alternator (passenger side of engine bay.

I replaced mine yesterday when my battery discharged. ($70.00 installed) The brushes were so badly worn that the alternator was putting out only 9 volts. Now it is putting out 14 volts, and everything electrical is performing wonderfully, compared to how it was before. The biggest improvement is starting; it used to take about 3 or 4 seconds of revving (and battery draining) to start the car; now startups are powerful, and almost instant -- a brief button push (I have a pushbuttion starter) and the engine is running. I am also noticing less roughness and stumbling at idle. I plan to replace the ignition wires at some point (they are still original) which should smooth out the engine evern more.

What remains on my to-do list for September are:
1.) New muffler (my car is beginning to sound like a hot rod). I want to bypass the resonator with a Y-pipe since I understand the muffler, alone, is sufficient.

2.) Stop the power steering leak, which actually started when I began using power steering fluid instead of ATF

3.) Belt tensioner. Mine appears to be shot, and my belt is kind of loose, but perfectly functional.

4.) Repaint my front wheels. I did this once before with spectatular results. A few months ago, in one of my "brain is alseep" modes, I sprayed brake parts cleaner on them to remove some baked-on brake dust. It worked, but a bit too well, removing some clearcoat and paint in the process, and causing some bubbling.

FYI: when repainting your wheels, the paint itself is not important. It is the clearcoat that matters. I used two or three coats of Duplicolor Arctic Silver, and MANY coats of Rustoleum clear coat -- an entire can per wheel -- unil the surfce was glassy smooth. A porous surface will soon be dirty and impossible to clean. A smooth surface can be easily wiped clean.

I did my wheels two years ago and the rears are still in perfect condition, requiring only a damp rag to wipe the brake dust and dirt off. The fronts were soiled a bit by the very black baked-in dust from the Jurid pads used on my last pad change, but really damaged in that brake cleaner incident I mentioned.

I hear Metal Master, Mintex, and EBC pads perform as well as OEM but produce less dust. Anyone of you using them?
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