I own a ’97 Buick LeSabre with a 3.8 engine. When I remove the gas cap to put in gas, there is a release of fumes from the spout from the buildup of pressure. What would cause this pressure?
George from Blyth, N.Y.
There is a problem with the way the gas tank is purging pressure. Pressure inside the gas tank is released through a vent on the top of the tank. There could be a problem with the vent, a blocked purge hose or a plugged vapor canister in the EVAP system. The system needs to be checked out. Best to you.
I own an ’87 Chevy Camaro. Water is dripping from the passenger side floor area as well as from the plastic heater box. Where is it coming from? Any help would be appreciated.
Curtis from Charlotte, N.C.
The A/C system condensation drains out of the bottom of the evaporator case in your car. Organic matter in the form of leaves, pine needles and plant matter get into the HVAC box through the air inlet at the base of the windshield. When this matter gets into the evaporator case, it breaks down and rots into a paste. This paste filters down to the condensation drain and mixes with water, forming an organic plug in the water drain at the bottom of the case. When this happens, the water backs up into the vehicle, usually on the passenger’s side floorboard. In order to clear the drain, you must remove the small rubber hose from the bottom of the box and gently clear the clog with a wire hanger or grab-all tool, and the leak will go away. Success to you.
I own a ’99 Dodge Ram conversion van. I have heard that if the transmission fluid is never changed, and then you change it at a high mileage, that the transmission could be destroyed. Is this true?
Barb from Algonquin
If the fluid in your transmission was burnt (very brown or black), then I leave it alone because the transmission has probably been overheated during its life. If you replace the burnt fluid with new high-detergency fluid on a “cooked” unit, the clutches come unglued from their backing and the unit fails.
Tom Torbjornsen is an automotive expert of 37 years. An automotive journalist in good standing with the IMPA (International Motor Press Association) and MPG (Motor Press Guild), Torbjornsen is the Repair and Maintenance Editor for AOL Autos, At Home Portals and many other websites. Hear his radio show. America’s Car Show, on the SSI Radio Network Saturdays at 8 a.m. Listen to the show on the live stream during regular show times at www.americascarshow.com. Send your car questions to his website at www.americascarshow.com. You can also find Tom’s book, “How To Make Your Car Last Forever,” in local Barnes & Nobel booksellers, or order online at Amazon.com.