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View Poll Results: Do/Will you work on your own car(s)
Don't know how to do minor repairs - pretty much every issue goes to the shop 11 17.19%
Know how to do minor repairs - but refuse to do it myself anymore 11 17.19%
I'll do or attempt Whatever I can manage to diagnose that doesn't require special tools or electronics i.e. - routine maintenance, plugs, alternators, fuel pumps, belts, thermostats, switches, etc 32 50.00%
Can & do it all - rebuild/replace motors & trannys, etc 3 4.69%
Know how to do it all - but refuse to anymore 7 10.94%
Voters: 64. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-06-2009, 10:12 AM   #21
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Yeah, I remember a friend and I replacing a camshaft on a 72 Nova SS in a Walmart parking lot in Ventura CA in the mid 80-'s. I doubt we could do that on today's cars..........
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Old 01-06-2009, 10:13 AM   #22
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Nor like the world was 40 years ago when you could just take that old oil and filter and dump them in the trash. Try that today and the fine (c)would equal the price of a new car. Same with old tires.
Indeed -- in fact, dealing with the used oil and the spent filter are a big reason why I don't change my own oil and filter. Given that it costs about $20-25 to have it done and the materials for it might cost $10-15, it's worth an extra ten bucks to not get yourself all grimy and have to deal with disposing hazardous waste.

I do, on the other hand, change my own air filter. That one is still easy.
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Old 01-06-2009, 10:14 AM   #23
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I do, on the other hand, change my own air filter. That one is still easy.
I change my old air freshener,does that count??
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Old 01-06-2009, 10:26 AM   #24
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Used to do it all.
Now live in a small town where you call the mechanic, he comes and picks up the car, does his thing, and brings it back washed and vacuumed. I just have to pay the (small) bill, when I remember to.
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Old 01-06-2009, 11:03 AM   #25
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My SIL is my mechanic. This guy can fix anything. He's in the middle now of rebuilding two vintage Mustangs. He's got more tools than most automotive garages. If he needs some simple part and can't find it he'll make the darn thing. I can't believe some of the things he's come up with to fix whatever. We call him McGiver. Remember that show? He never wants money to fix anything so when ever I get the chance, I fill the tank on his boat. Then I use up the gas on one of our fishng trips. I can't buy him any tools 'cause he's got everything. I mean every tool in both pneumatic and electric.
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Old 01-06-2009, 11:08 AM   #26
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I change my old air freshener,does that count??
Are you supposed to change those things?
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Old 01-06-2009, 12:50 PM   #27
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I have done nearly everything, except transmissions and bodywork. Rebuilt 3 engines in my early 20s for myself and my parents. Wouldn't tear apart an engine now, but just replaced an embedded waterpump last month (took 8 hours, done in 2 days). As long as I am still limber and my portfolio is not setting new glorious highs, I will continue to try to do as much as I can. What else for me to do?
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Old 01-06-2009, 02:20 PM   #28
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Yes. I am a strong believer in the maxim "if you want it done right,
do it yourself", and there are few places this advice applies better than
in car maintenance and repair.
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Old 01-06-2009, 02:25 PM   #29
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I can change a flat tire, and that's about it.
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Old 01-06-2009, 03:44 PM   #30
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When DD was away at school she'd take her car to the local mechanic. She took her car in one day for a oil change and afterwards she called me saying the car was bucking. I told her to stop driving it and I had it towed to a local Mitsubishi dealership. Turns out that the mechanic drained the transmission of all it's fluid and filled the engine up with 5 quarts of oil. Now the engine had 10 quarts of oil and I was not a happy camper.

This is why I like doing things myself.
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:10 PM   #31
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Just bought an old vehicle with very bad headlights. Paid $20 for a kit and wet sanded the headlights till they were as good as new. If its simple, I will do it. If not, I prove myself a disappointment to my mechanic father and pay someone to fix it. I never was interested in learning how to fix a car.
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:16 PM   #32
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I wanted to teach my 23-yr old daughter about car maintenance and how to deal with mechanics. So, I let her go to a garage, but kept an eye on her car.

My daughter bought a lifetime tire balancing service at the garage she also used for oil change. She did not know that her tires were from Costco, who provides free tire balancing and rotation.

They kept trying to talk her into unnecessary services, such as brake jobs that she didn't need. So, recently I pulled the wheels to show her that the brake pads were still OK.

Taking off the wheel cover, I immediately started to curse. The bastards used the impact wrench on the wheel nuts, and distorted the corners so bad that I had to hammer the socket onto them. Then, I had to use my air impact wrench to take them off. I told my daughter that if she had to change a flat tire on the road, it would be tough luck getting them off.

So, now she is not going back there anymore, and my son has to help her with the oil change!
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Old 01-06-2009, 04:23 PM   #33
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Timely poll. Today I changed the oil(15 quarts), put in a new air filter, and replaced the fuel filters in my diesel truck.

Last I checked, dealer wanted $400 +parts for this.

Took about 4 hours, with a break for lunch and several other breaks because I can.

But, a man has got to know his limitations...........
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Old 01-06-2009, 05:19 PM   #34
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Just bought an old vehicle with very bad headlights. Paid $20 for a kit and wet sanded the headlights till they were as good as new. If its simple, I will do it. If not, I prove myself a disappointment to my mechanic father and pay someone to fix it. I never was interested in learning how to fix a car.
I did mine a few months back and it worked well, so far. Just follow the instructions and it'll come out great.

Really what's in the package is some sand paper and polycarb. polish which is what the lens is made of.
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Old 01-06-2009, 07:59 PM   #35
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I used to do a certain amount, including change the oil, light bulbs, minor repairs. Now I simply cannot be bothered, plus I can't imagine being able to get enough room to work on the minivan in that cramped engine compartment. So I have a mechanic I trust and I am happy to get the oil changes done there because if there are any other issues he generally catches them at that time.
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Old 01-06-2009, 08:17 PM   #36
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Even though I can afford to pay someone else, I enjoy doing my own work, especially now that I have a garage and (most of) the proper tools. When I was young, I did my own maintenance and repairs because I had no money. It was a real pain to be a curbside mechanic with make-do tools. I swore a lot.
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Old 01-06-2009, 08:55 PM   #37
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I took a course on car maintenance when I bought my first car, not so I could do it myself, but to understand what was going on and not get hoodwinked by greedy automechanics. I wash it, touch up paint chips, change bulbs, but that's about it. Never had a flat tire. Problem is, my car is too low maintenance for me to gain any expertise.
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Old 01-07-2009, 06:10 AM   #38
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I took a course on car maintenance when I bought my first car, not so I could do it myself, but to understand what was going on and not get hoodwinked by greedy automechanics. I wash it, touch up paint chips, change bulbs, but that's about it. Never had a flat tire. Problem is, my car is too low maintenance for me to gain any expertise.
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Old 01-07-2009, 10:16 AM   #39
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Maybe it is a generational thing. Anyone under 30 fix their own car? Who isn't a complete car nut?
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Old 01-07-2009, 10:22 AM   #40
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Maybe it is a generational thing. Anyone under 30 fix their own car? Who isn't a complete car nut?
I don't know that it's specifically generational. As I mentioned before, today's cars are a LOT harder for DIYers to maintain because of the complexity of what's under the hood, the amount of "stuff" in there and the amount of special tools/equipment needed to do very much.
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RIP to Reemy, my avatar dog (2003 - 9/16/2017)
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