Announcer: This is Bumper to Bumper, the car show. Drive in anxious and cruise out confident! With the best automotive information for your vehicle. And now your hosts, Matt Allen and Dave Riccio.
Dave: Well, good morning everyone and welcome to Bumper to Bumper Radio! I am Dave Riccio here along with Matt Allen and together we are your KTAR car guys, heard every Saturday from 11 to noon. At Bumper to Bumper Radio we’re helping you, the motoring public, have a better overall car experience. You’ve got car questions, we’ve got answers, so we encourage you to give us a call at (602) 277-5827, (602) 277-KTAR. And, always, if you’re the shy type you can send us a text at 411923, as long as you’re not texting and driving that’s totally fine with us, you can get away with that. So, today on the Bumper to Bumper road map we’re going to have a little bit of fact or fiction about everyone’s favorite topic: going to the emissions station and we’re going to have open phones and texting. Vehicle emissions, you know, Matt, I thought I knew everything about emissions, but we’ve got a guy here in studio that tells me I don’t know much about it.
Matt: Well, yeah, I mean, as we sit here before the show and we’re chatting about these things I’m starting to realize there’s a lot of things that a lot of people probably don’t know, and even we’re in the business and little things mean the percentage of fail rates and I didn’t realize some of those were that high or the public’s perception is about the program in the first place. I think a lot of people probably, it’s a government program, it’s got to be bad. No, you know, we know better, we can tell you. I believe in this case, you’re right. I mean, you ever go down to Mexico City or some of these other foreign countries that don’t have any emissions testing at all.
Dave: Not so good, not really. Well we’ve got Trevor Bajory, I think I said that right, and he has spent a lot of time with the ADEQ. Tell us a little bit about it?
Trevor: Thank you, so, I’m Trevor Bajory and I’m the director of the water quality division, which you think what does water quality have to do with the VEI program? Nothing. I recently moved to water quality but before that I was the deputy director of the air quality, in which I had some responsibility of the VEI program. VEI program, like you said, there’s a lot of people who just think that it is not an effective program. We estimate that there is about 86 tons per day that are reduced from this program.
Matt: I believe it. I mean, if I just think back, even when I was kid, I mean, the air is so much cleaner now than it used to be. I mean, you get sick standing at a street corner of a busy intersection with all the car exhaust. I mean, there’s a lot of things besides vehicle emissions that are going to go into air quality, I mean you see the dust and the weather can even play a big role in it, but what we can control is our cars and you know whether you need to go through emissions or not you should still have your car running well. Driving around with your check engine light is not a good thing, and besides the fact, a lot of people don’t know, what is it? 50% of the people that you surveyed had no clue that their car would fail emissions with the check engine light on?
Trevor: Right. With the newer technology if your check engine light is on, for a ’96 or newer car, you’re going to fail the emissions test regardless of what that light is on for. And, 50% of a survey we did at the end of 2013, 50% of people were unsure or didn’t think it would make a difference.
Matt: Now, I can see some people getting chapped a little bit about that maybe. I think there’s some cases where a fuel gage will make the check engine light on, transmission failure will make the check engine light on. Well, transmission failure, if your car’s not going into overdrive, or you’re not shifting well, it’s not going to be as efficient. I might get a little bit of heartburn if I fail because my fuel gage wasn’t working right, but I guess you’ve heard everything and every complaint and every opposite opinion.
Trevor: Of course, let’s take your fuel gage, the emissions test for the evaporative system, will, is not a continuously run system. It checks it every periodically depending on if your gas tanks within the right level, if the gas, the computer doesn’t know whether the gas tank level is, you can’t pass.
Matt: Ah, there’s, okay. There you go, see you don’t even think about these…
Dave: Ah, see, look at that.
Matt: Because yeah, you have to have, it has to be a certain ambient degree temperature outside, you have to have a certain amount of fuel in the car. Now it makes sense, duh!
Dave: You guys are talking about an evap system, I don’t know if everyone knows what an evap system is, but it’s probably the most common code I see in a car. Car comes in, we scan every one that comes through the door, “evap code, evap code, evap code.” It’s not that one that’s going to make your car run bad, but it’s one that’s there and what it is, is the fumes, and maybe you can explain this better, but the gas in the tank, we don’t want those fumes evaporating off the top of that gas going out in the atmosphere.
Trevor; Absolutely true, so one of the challenges we have here in Phoenix specifically, Tucson as well, is what’s called ozone pollution. What happens is those fumes plus some other pollution get mixed in the heat and they form ozone, which is unhealthy on the ground level. So, you’re right, and I would also add that probably most of those failures are for gas caps, because gas caps tend to leak more than the rest of the system. We have implemented like we were talking about before the show, a free gas cap program, where if you come in and fail before your gas cap, we’ll replace it for you and send you on your way with a passing certificate.
Dave: That’s pretty good.
Matt: How did that system, or that gas cap program come about? Through complaints or through feedback from consumers?
Trevor: It actually came through a couple different ways, complaints, absolutely. I was talking to my father-in-law about it one day and he had failed for his gas cap, and so that was one of the indicators. We had also seen what Ohio had done, Ohio actually implemented a similar program and just made huge differences in their failure rates.
Matt: You know, the other thing we were talking about before the show is the evap emissions and how difficult some of these problems can be to find. I mean, you can fail the gas cap or even the whole evaporative system, the manufacturers measure slightly different than ADEQ does on the test, but we’re talking 2000ths-8000ths of an inch. So, you imagine that car come into your shop with an evaporative system failure and the technician now has to probably go through, I don’t know, there’s ten to twenty feet of hoses and tubing probably that are related to the gas cap.
Dave: All easily accessible of course.
Matt: Yeah, they’re all right there in front of you. The engineers designed these for ease of repair. But you’ve got a gas cap, and then there’s probably, I don’t know, eight to ten different components if you count the gas tank, the different valves and stuff. So, go find these leaks, go find it, it’s not like a garden hose where it just sprays water out of it, you can’t see it, so there, they can be very difficult to fix at times.
Dave: Well you said that gas caps, that free gas cap program put a big dent in the amount of failures that were going through. You were running like 13%, something more than there, you know, 14 and that’s coming down.
Trevor: Yeah, so one of the goals that ADEQ is to reduce initial failures on vehicles through our outreach and through our changes to our program by 50% over five years, so we’ve got about two years left in that. So, we were running right around 13-11% failures on initial tests, since then we’ve reduced that to about 5 ½, mostly due to, because of the gas cap program. We do have another program, that we haven’t rolled out significantly, I say program, a slogan, to try to help people understand that if their check engine light is on they’re not going to pass the emissions test. The slogan is, “Check, fix, pass.” So, if your check engine light is on, get it checked, get it fixed and you’ll pass your test.
Dave: Check, fix, pass. Check, fix, pass.
Matt: Do you have any idea what, and this may not be something that you guys track at all, what percentage of shops actually make the repair and then take the car and complete the test for the consumer?
Trevor: We don’t have those types of statistics, what we do have, is if you go to our website, the best website for VEI is myeasycar.com. If you go on that website you can see the results if the shop brings, if somebody comes with a car and it fails and takes it to a shop, on the back of your test you’re supposed to fill out, “who fixed my car” and so we do have a percentage of vehicles that have passed or failed once they were fixed by that shop.
Matt: Yeah, there’s a report card basically, so before you go in you can go to myeasycar.com, and find this on our what? Facebook page?
Dave: On our Bumper to Bumper Facebook page you’ll find this. So, BumpertoBumperRadio.com, our Facebook link is on there and you’ll find it right there.
Matt: Well, the other useful tool that I just recently learned about in January, is you can go find the vehicle failure, well, not even failure history, the emission test history of the vehicle. So, now as part of our pre-purchase inspection or buying program, if a customer brings a car in to have us check it out, we are now doing that and all you have to do is put in the VIN number. So, if you’re out buying a car, used car, you may want to go to myeasy car and there’s a tab for vehicle history or something, it’s pretty easy to navigate, put the VIN number in and it’s going to tell you a little bit about that car. I mean, we had a car fail thirteen times in the last five years or something like that.
Dave: That’s not a car that you want to buy, you don’t want to, it’s tough to own a car that has an emission problem, it’s like “I’m going.”
Dave: “Oh no, got to go to emissions.” You dread that thing when it shows up in the mail.
Matt: So we have what, five years of exemption from a purchase of a brand new car. And then what’s the break down after that?
Trevor: So, anything older than 1967 doesn’t have to test, ‘67-5 years of today have to test their car, and for vehicles that are subject to the dyno test, called the IM 147 test it’s ‘80 and newer I believe, and OBD vehicles, the onboard diagnostic systems, those are good for two years, the registration cycle, the older vehicles are only one year.
Matt: Now, I know one way to cheat the system a little bit. How about that all-wheel-drive car that’s got to go in the dyno?
Trevor: Alright, so, there are some cars that are designed in such a way that our system can’t really test them very well. So, what we typically do is revert to just a standing idle test, if it’s a tail pipe test, the newer cars it doesn’t matter because it’s a computer check anyway.
Matt: Right, right, yeah, the car, well yeah and I guess you’re right, there’s probably not that many all-wheel-drive cars pre-90, well, a lot of the Audis and Subarus are, so if you’ve got one of those hot rod Subarus you may be able to get around them a little bit, right. Just got to make sure it runs clean it idle.
Dave: We’ve got Tony, Joe, Robert and Dennis in an open line at (602) 277-5827, (602) 277-KTAR. You’re listening to Matt and Dave, your KTAR car guys at Bumper to Bumper Radio.
Dave: Well, welcome back to Bumper to Bumper Radio. I am Dave Riccio here along with Matt Allen and we’ve got Trevor Bajory in with us from the state emissions, people, something or other. Not good at all these details.
Trevor: The guys that a lot of people want to cuss at when they fail emissions.
Dave: Right, but they’re really doing a good thing and it’s cleaning up the air. So, if you guys have any questions related to emissions, (602) 277-5827. Trevor can help us out with any other car questions as well. He said I can, fuel injection problems, computer programming, all that stuff. You can give us a call with whatever you want to talk about. Reminds me of a part from my favorite movie…
Dave: I love Fletch.
Matt: Fletch, there’s always a spot for Fletch, there’s so many scenarios where Fletch just fits right in real well. And, if you haven’t seen Fletch that’s like mandatory viewing, you need to get out from underneath the rock and go and get the movie.
Dave: Every now and then I’ll quote a line from Fletch and people look at me.
Trevor: And not Fletch 2, just Fletch.
Dave: What do you do for a living? Well, I’m a shepherd. And they stare at me funny, I’m like, Fletch, you wouldn’t get it.
Dave: So, hey, let’s go with Joe in Mesa on a 1991 Cadillac Coupe DeVille. How can we help you Joe?
Joe: Yes, this doesn’t have anything to do with emissions.
Matt: Oh, you’re just going to have to call back later then. I’m teasing, I’m teasing, go ahead.
Joe: You want me to go ahead?
Joe: The right blinker blinks about every thirty seconds and I’ve put a new bulb in it and the left blinker works good. The rear lights are both fine on the right side, on the blinker side, see the right side blinker is on, troubleshooting, could the flasher be going bad? Or could it be part of the turn signal switch because when I turn to the left and I turn back, you know, it cancels.
Matt: Well, yeah. The answer is yes, it could be either, both of those things and one thing to remember that a lot of people don’t realize that is often times cars have two flashers. There might be a flasher that for some reason just does the left or right side of the car and then there’s a flasher for the hazards and then the other side that’s not independent. So, what I typically, the easiest test, you said the left side was working fine, or one side was working fine. I would turn that side on and I would go around and look at each one of the lights that is flashing. Then, turn the right side on and see if the same lights are illuminating. If they’re just on solid you want to make sure that they’re all working. The other way to do it, just to check the bulbs in such is to turn on the flasher, everything that’s happening on the right side of the car should be happening on the left side and vice versa. Other than that, then you’re going to, I’d probably be looking at, if all the bulbs and everything are working, I’d be looking hard for the other flasher or both flashers and then after that you’ve got to get the road map out, AKA the wiring diagram and just sort it out. That’s the only way to go about doing it, just give it a methodical approach, go through the tests. And there’s no test, there’s no book, you take that into the shop there’s no “oh, let me go to page 47, turn signals, does it work on the right side, it only flashes once every thirty seconds.” You’ve got to be able to go in and figure it out.
Dave: You just plug into it, the little machine tells you what’s wrong.
Matt: Oh, I need to get one of those.
Dave: For sure.
Dave: Hey, Joe, thanks for the call. (602) 277-5827, (602) 277-KTAR. We’ve got a patient Robert from Phoenix calling in a 2011 Chevrolet Silverado. How can we help you Robert? You’re on Bumper to Bumper Radio.
Robert: I’ve got a question about exhaust. Now, I’m looking into putting in a loud obnoxious exhaust because my truck is lifted and it’s very pretty and I want it to sound good.
Dave: Well, if you’re going to look good, you’ve got to sound good.
Robert: Yeah, exactly. That’s my philosophy anyway. Anyhow, I was wondering if there’s any problems with emissions with that. I know, in my younger days I used to hollow out catalytic converters and make it sound really really nasty, but here in Arizona, I’m new to Arizona, so I’m new to this whole emissions deal out here.
Matt: Yeah, it is a little bit different in the state of Arizona versus some other places for sure.
Trevor: So, Robert I had my fingers in my ears saying la-la-la when you said something about hollowing out a catalytic converter but with regards to exhaust, if you’re not changing the catalytic converter out, meaning you’re doing a cat back system there shouldn’t be any problems what so ever. If you’re doing in front of the catalytic converter you’ve got to make sure that your oxygen sensors and everything are still there so that the computer doesn’t complain at you and turn that check engine light on.
Matt: Well, yeah, and you would never, that would essentially be ruining what I amount to a brand new truck to me. Four year old truck and somebody goes and hacks it up with taking out oxygen sensors, I mean, it just doesn’t work well, but there are companies that make high flow catalytic converters and the performance exhaust companies are all making these converters because they know there’s a market for it. People want to use them and want to hop up their cars.
Trevor: And the manufacturers that are making those equipment have to ensure that they are not going to A) void your warranty if you still have it or B) cause your emissions to be something that’ll not meet federal standards.
Matt: That’s one thing too, these car manufacturers have to guarantee the emissions equipment for, is it, eight years and 80,000 miles?
Dave: It’s a federally mandated thing.
Dave: Hey, thanks so much for the call, Robert. We are going to go with Chip real quickly from Mesa on an ‘05 Ford Excursion. How can we help you Chip?
Chip: Hey you guys. Speaking of check engine lights, I just bought this Excursion with 100,000 miles and driving home from Mexico buying it, the check engine light came on and it’s got the Sinister aftermarket ERG and air oil cooler, because that Powerstroke 6.0 had those issues. Can you guys recommend somebody to work on something on that? I’m a little worried about the dealer working on a tipped vehicle.
Matt: Yeah, for your, for that car, I would take it to ADS, Automotive Diagnostic Specialties, they’re on Chandler Boulevard, just east of I-10 there. They’re a bosch diesel service center and they do a lot of that work. I have a 2005 Excursion that just turned 100,000 miles on Wednesday.
Chip: Mine did yesterday.
Matt: All right! Well, I really enjoy mine, it’s a good vehicle. It’s my school bus, hauling the family around.
Dave: Well, when it comes to emissions, diesels, you don’t just look for the check engine light. You do an opacity test.
Trevor: Yeah, so the diesel test is completely different and you should know that I’m an advocate for changing that to where we’re actually testing diesel vehicles for OBD as well. I believe it was 2008 when diesel vehicles became OBD compliant, so anything after that we can test. What we test for diesels right now is the thickness of the smoke that comes out. Our failure rate for diesels is actually pretty low, I think it’s 1% or less.
Dave: Doesn’t really happen.
Trevor: Because there’s not, especially with today’s technology and the new systems they’ve put in place, diesel smoke is not the same problem it was in the past.
Matt: You know, I always get nervous, I say I have an Excursion and it’s a diesel I had to take to emissions. I really pucker up. When you’re going through the emissions, if you’ve never been through the emissions test in a diesel and you’re worried about your car, good lord, that thing. It’s like foot to the floor and you think that the connecting rods are going to come out of the side of the engine. What’s with that, they just need to ramp that thing up, rev it, or, I don’t understand the test.
Trevor: Well the reason for the test, it’s called the snap idle test and that’s why they floor it as they do. That’s going to be your period of highest smoke and so diesels, as you know, can rev okay without having too much risk to them, but as the owner of the vehicle it does rattle your nerves a little bit.
Matt: Oh yeah, big time. Big time.
Dave: When we come back, we’re taking your calls at (602) 277-5827. You can also text us at 411923. You’re listening to Matt and Dave your KTAR car guys here at Bumper to Bumper Radio.
Announcer: Few cities are as car centric as Phoenix and this is the show that’ll help you better understand that machine you depend on to get around the valley. It’s Bumper to Bumper Radio, KTAR News on 92.3FM and the KTAR app for Android and iPhone.
Dave: Well, welcome back to Bumper to Bumper Radio. I am Dave Riccio here along with Matt Allen and we are here to help you with your car. We’ve also got Trevor Bajory in with us. We’re talking about emissions or anything related to your car today. You can give us a call at (602) 277-5827. Bumper to Bumper Radio is a show about you and your car. We have a website called BumpertoBumperRadio.com and on there is a list of shops that Matt and I feel are great shops to take care of you and your car. I know there’s a lot of anxiety about car repair and “Ah, gosh, I just don’t want to be taken advantage of, I don’t know who to trust.” All of those shops are great shops, I would send anyone there tomorrow and know that they would be well taken care of. So, BumpertoBumperRadio.com. You can also find the link to myeasycar.com on our Facebook page if you go there.
Matt: And if you’re there Like Us, we could use a friend or two.
Dave: Yeah, we’re a little light on friends.
Matt: Hey, one thing that, not really related to your car, but somewhat related, I saw a blurb on the news last night and actually on KTAR.com about DPS. They are monitoring the traffic on the 51 this weekend with an airplane and I got reminded of it early this morning as it, my house seemed to be where they were making their u-turn. And this plane is really low, I drive the 51 every day, there’s a lot of speeders, a lot of traffic, there’s been a lot of rollover, especially in that northern area. So, if you’re out today, don’t just slow down today because the airplane is there. You may want to just check your whole car and slow it down a little bit and they are out there. I had to go downtown this morning and I saw two or three people pulled over. What they’re doing, they’re just flying around, they’ve got units sitting on top of the off ramps or specific areas, not on the freeway and you’re just cruising along saying, “my radar detector is not going off, I don’t see any cops.” Kablamo, you’re busted! So, watch out, they want to really get people to slow down.
Dave: There is nothing more fun than being pulled over, then having to pay a speeding ticket or go to school. Spend your Saturday in a school. That’s no fun!
Matt: Over whatever else it is you shouldn’t be doing.
Dave: Well, let’s get to, let’s see here, we are going to go with Dennis in Phoenix on an ‘07 Honda Fit. Dennis you’re on Bumper to Bumper Radio, how can we help you?
Dennis: Yes, sirs, I’m trying to find out, I’ve got a, the Fit, went through the emissions and failed. And I’m having trouble, the check engine light came on, it has been on for quite some time with an OP0172 code and definition says it’s “Fuel System Too Rich (Bank 1).” I’ve gone through and I’ve replaced the O2 sensor on my catalytic converter front and back. I’ve done the coils, I’ve done the fuel injectors, I’ve spent over a thousand dollars to get it fixed and it’s still not working right. So, I ended up giving the waiver, paying for a waiver, but I still need to get this fixed.
Matt: You do. That’s what I would call a W.A.G. A thousand dollar W.A.G.
Dave: Wild a guess?
Matt: Yeah. I mean, man and I hate to hear that because you just wasted a bunch of money. Nothing that you did fixed your car. I mean, we need to, somebody needs to get in there and find out what’s happening. Just, a lot of people kill the messenger. The oxygen sensor is just telling the story of what’s happening in the exhaust system. You know, sometimes they lie, sometimes they’re out of calibration, they’re not thinking like they should think and they are bad, but there’s tests to do that. Catalytic converter, same thing. You can know that converter is good or bad, basically just off the readings of the pre-cat O2 and the post-cat O2. Too right, that means it’s getting too much fuel and the oxygen sensor is seeing that and that oxygen sensor is saying back to the computer, hey there is too much fuel down here, cut it back, cut it back. And so the car has to cut back the fuel. So, either the car doesn’t have the ability to cut it back anymore, which would be a mechanical failure, maybe they’re sucking something off the evap, you might have an injector that’s hung open, I’m not sure, I don’t believe that car has a mass air flow sensor. Somebody just needs to get in there with the right equipment and do some testing and get it fixed.
Dave: Well he brought up a good point, and I don’t really know a ton about it but I was hoping Trevor could answer to it. He got a waiver, now what is a waiver all about and how does someone get a waiver?
Trevor: Okay, so the waiver program is designed for vehicles that are failing, they actually have to go through the test twice and fail twice and document that the costs to fix the vehicle is over a specific threshold. The important thing to know about a waiver is that you can only have one in the lifetime of the vehicle. It’s not as long as you own it and you sell it and someone else can get a waiver. It’s the lifetime of the vehicle, in fact, that’s supposed to be disclosed when you sell a vehicle.
Matt: Huh, yeah, I was going to say, that can really hurt the resale value of a car. 2007, I still consider that a new car, it’s a modern car and I hate, I don’t want to make you feel bad, but that car could have probably been fixed for much less than a thousand dollars. That’s just my initial guess. Is there stats on what the cost, average repair costs and such are, because I know when we fill out the form we got to put down the dollar amount. Do you know what the average OBD2 repair is?
Trevor: Well, the challenge with that is the data that we get on costs is not our data. You know, for example, when I take my own car through and I fix something, what’s it cost? Zero. And so I’m skewing the numbers even though I may have spent money on it. And so, we do have some costs, it’s truly low honestly, a lot of people don’t fill that out. We want that information to be able to analyze it and figure out how we can help people, but ultimately, if they don’t put it on, we’re still going to retest your car.
Matt: And Dennis, if you’re looking for a shop, BumpertoBumperRadio.com, find a good shop there in Phoenix area to take care of you.
Dave: Well, I’m looking at a text here Matt. He’s got a 2006 Cadillac and it’s got some sort of heating, overheating issue going on. He wants to trade the car in, he’s wondering if he should fix it before trading in. What’s that going to do to the value of the car? What do you think? What’s your… do you fix it before trading it in? Is it even worth it? You got to find out what they’re going to give you for a good working car, you know, in order, let’s say they “hey, we’re going to give you 10,000 bucks.” Well, what if it’s broken? We got to get through that and what is it going to cost to repair the car? If it’s only going to cost you $500 bucks to fix it but you’re going to lose $3000 in value, well absolutely, fix the car.
Matt: Well, yeah and are you trading it in because it’s overheating and you don’t want to fix it? Or were you shopping for a car already and this just happened to be the case.
Dave: This is an ethical question I have, because I own a transmission shop and people come in and their transmission is bad and maybe it doesn’t act up for like thirty miles and they’re like, “I’ll just go trade it in.” Hey, you know, I’m great if you want to go trade the car in, as long as you’re up front with the dealership and say you know, this has a problem, because the reality is they may not catch it and they may sell it to somebody and someone is going to get hurt so you’ve got to pay for your own problems. You can’t make them somebody else’s.
Matt: Quite honestly, Dave, I don’t think that you could trade that car in, tell the dealer it’s got no reheating problem, they’re not disclosing that.
Dave: No, they may pass that right back down.
Matt: Unless it’s a really nice cherry car, it’s never going to see the car lot. Or they might go run it through their used car get ready and see what’s wrong with it. And then if not, it’s going to get blown out to the dealer, I mean to the auction, so… but, you definitely don’t want to sell that car. Like you said Dave, ethical question, you going to go sell that car to a single mom or a family that needs to get something going and then all of a sudden, you know, you’re free and clear and you’ve got your money in your pocket but you’ve served these guys up a plate of poo.
Dave: Greed can be a problem. We’re going to go with Jeff in Phoenix on a 1997 GMC 1500 pickup. How can we help you, Jeff? You’re on Bumper to Bumper Radio.
Jeff: Good morning guys. I’ve got a couple questions for you. I’ve got about 211,000 miles on this truck and I’ve had it forever. When it’s warm, when it’s cold, no problems with oil pressure, once it heats up and you go to an idle, which is about 600-700 rpms, the oil pressure gage goes to zero, light comes on, all of that thing. And then, unrelated to that, at about 70 this thing has a hesitation in it, it doesn’t affect the rpms but you can feel it and it’s got about a twelve second interval.
Matt: Hmm, twelve second, see, you feel like a hesitation or more of a hiccup? Does it feel like a hiccup?
Jeff: It’s a hesitation. Almost like it stops firing, it slows down. It doesn’t really slow down but you can feel like it almost wants to, and then it always lasts for, it has a twelve second interval but it only lasts for a split second or a half second, enough to feel.
Dave: Twelve second interval at 70 miles an hour, what about 75 miles an hour?
Jeff: Yeah, from about 65-75 it does it, anything slower it doesn’t really, you don’t notice it.
Matt: We need one of our armchair quarterbacks that’s texting to send us a message on that one. As far as the oil pressure goes, I’m not sure what the model your split is but there’s some of those that the oil pressure ring, the o ring for the pickup tube for the screen, those things dry rot, get hardened up and split and will allow it to suck air. I’m just not sure when that started happening, it was on the 5.3 liter engine, I think that came out more ‘99. I’m not 100% certain on that one, but we need to get a good oil pressure test, someone needs to hook up a mechanical gage and actually do a real pressure test and confirm that it’s bad or confirm what the oil pressure is and make sure it’s not just a sender or switch.
Jeff: Yeah, 212,000 miles, there’s a little bit of more room in them crank bearings.
Matt: Big time. And as far as that hesitation problem, I… drop it off, that’s something that if you brought that to my shop, we’d have a more in depth conversation, we might go out and drive it with you, but I’m going to tell you we need the car for a couple days and we need a couple hundred bucks to start looking.
Dave: Well we’ve got a text here, “Hi guys, I have a 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee. I had my alignment done a few months ago, but my Jeep would violently shake, my steering wheel is uncontrollable.” That’s the old Jeep shake, huh?
Matt: That’s the death wobble.
Dave: And that happens.
Matt: Yeah, what’s happening in there is the caster, which is one of the alignment angles, is out of alignment. But, it’s out of alignment because there’s a worn part, probably a trailing arm bushing or something in that front suspension. So, I mean, I can feel it, it’s probably around 45-50 miles per hour and you think you’re just, you think it’s just over, the world’s coming to an end and once you slow down a little bit, hit the brakes, sometimes you can drive through it, sometimes you can’t.
Dave: Well, I’ve had a lot of Jeeps and they were all lifted. When you start lifting Jeeps you start really running into those problems. One of the ways I used to do it is just beef up the steering stabilizer and that will take care of that caster shake.
Matt: You know, next time you’re at the grocery store, start running with the grocery cart and if you’ve got one with a bad wheel that thing is screaming back and forth, left and right. That’s the same thing that’s happening with your Jeep. You’ve got to get that, I bet you will notice that that wheel is loose on the, on it’s mounting bracket or something like that. So, you’ve definitely got something wrong on the front end.
Dave: Well, we’re going to go with John in Phoenix. I’m not sure if this is a car question or a lawnmower question. How can we help you John, you’re on Bumper to Bumper Radio.
John: Yeah, you guys got the emission guy there so, you know, I’ve been driving, oh for about 45 years so I’ve driven quite a few cars. I’m not really into these emissions, not that I’ve had problems failing, I tend to get rid of the car before it gets that old. I remember reading one time that lawnmowers put out, you know, in that hour or two that you use it a week, more emissions than your whole car does in a week. So, I was just wondering why they’re not doing anything for lawnmowers when they’re making the cars have all these emission control devices.
Trevor: Good question, good question. Alright, so, a couple things here. One, especially if you’re using a two-cycle engine on your lawn equipment, absolutely. There’s a lot more emissions coming from that. There’s no feasible testing program that we could develop for that, although EPA has come up, out with more stringent standards to control that from a manufactured side. As the equipment is manufactured they have to meet more stringent standards, but a lot of that is also dependent on the maintenance of the equipment. If you’re not maintenancing it, changing the spark plugs, changing the filters, you’re right, there’s a lot of pollution from that. DEQs perspective is we’re going to control what we can control.
Matt: Yeah, you know, I bought a weed wacker. It’s a pull, so I’ve got a lot of bushes and stuff, so I do my stuff. In my little, it’s a four stroke, but it does still take, it’s got a catalytic converter on my weed wacker pull so I was shocked when I bought that. Dave is trying to do something over here…
Announcer: It’s time for Fact or Fiction!
Dave: I haven’t played that in a while, I’m a little out of touch. Okay, so the Fact or Fiction for today, Matt, I’m going to ask you first and then I’m going to ask the emission guy if you’re right or wrong. I think you can get this one right though. “I can disconnect my battery just before going to the emissions station and I’ll pass.” Fact or Fiction? Be careful!
Matt: I’m going to have to say, it’s a big old Fiction! Big old F!
Dave: I don’t know, Trevor, is he right? I mean, people do try it.
Trevor: Absolutely, they try it all the time. So, the deal with pulling your battery or if you have a scanner, you can connect a scanner to the car and clear all the codes. What that does though, is there’s certain systems on your car like the evap system we were talking about before that aren’t monitored continuously and so what happens is you reset those systems and so when you come into our stations they’ll be listed as unready and that is a rejection. We cannot test a vehicle because we do not know what the status of it is. And interestingly, I believe it’s, I believe the threshold is 2001, anything 2001 or older, you can have two unready monitors and still pass. In 2002 and newer you can only have one. We’ve changed our program recently to where if you come through and the vehicle is unready you have to wait until the next day to come back through again. Which means you’re going to be driving the car, hopefully the monitors set. If you fail that second, if you’re rejected that second time for being unready you have got a couple more days you have to wait. And, so it’s, the intent of that it’s to make you drive the car a little bit and hopefully get it ready.
Dave: So it can test itself. Well, when we come back, you’re listening to Matt and Dave, your KTAR car guys on Bumper to Bumper Radio.
Announcer: This is Bumper to Bumper Radios, KTAR News on 92.3 FM.
Dave: Well, welcome back to Bumper to Bumper Radio. I’m Dave Riccio here along with Matt Allen and we’ve got Trevor Bajory in with us from the emissions place, places, Arizona Department of… yeah, I screw that up every time, that acronym gets me.
Dave: ADEQ, that’s good. So, we’ve got to get right to the phones. We’ve got Kyle from Tonopah on an ‘05 Ford Excursion. Kyle you’re on Bumper to Bumper Radio, what can I help you with?
Kyle: Hi, I’m calling about that guy that just called in about his ’05 he had with the check engine light.
Kyle: Can you hear me?
Kyle: Oh, okay. He probably has an EGR delete and that’s going to trigger a PO401 Code, which is an EGR insufficient flow code. I had the same issue with mine and did a little digging and discovered that my EGR cooler, the ends were welded up. When you find that, he can get somebody with a good scan tool, you monitor your intake air temperature and EGR flow, if that sensor doesn’t register the change in temperature, no increase, then you know your EGR cooler is welded shut. It’s not going to have any effect on performance and it’s just thought I’d throw that out there for that guy in case he’s worried about his check engine light.
Matt: Yeah, but then the problem is, you have the emissions failure, you want to get, probably get that fixed. You know the problem with leaving the check engine light on just because you say you know what it is?
Dave: It doesn’t discriminate.
Matt: It doesn’t tell you what the next problem is. And actually, on my Excursion I did put on the EGR cooler, the aftermarket this and that, and there’s been, the EPA’s been cracking down on companies, that 6 liter engine is the same thing that’s in a heavy duty Navistar truck. So, what I was going to do is delete the EGR valve, do the computer reprogramming, to get around that because that EGR cooler has been a problem. But you can’t really do that anymore, they’re not, the EPA is cracking down and they’re really penalizing the shops. The shops aren’t even going to be offering that anymore.
Dave: For sure. Well, let’s go to James in Chandler on an ‘06 Chevrolet. Looks like he’s got a diesel as well. How can we help you James?
James: Yeah, I have an ’06 Cape 2500 diesel. I have a check engine light, because one of my glow plugs. Is that going to, do they do the OBD or do they look for check engine on a 2006?
Trevor: They don’t, so diesel emissions get tested by opacity currently. I said earlier in the show, I’m a fan of starting to do OBD on diesel vehicles, but right now they do not. So they’ll check the smoke coming out of the back and just depending on what the problem is that may or may not cause you to fail the test.
James: Yeah, because, you really don’t need the glow plugs here in Arizona this time of year, but like you said, it might be some other kind of check problem with the engine if I don’t fix it soon.
Matt: Yeah, that was a good point. Thanks for the call. Yeah, remember there is not the check engine light test on the diesels.
Dave: On the diesels you can skip that program and you’ve got a 1% chance of failing, so pretty good odds. So, we’re going to go with Chris is Mesa on a 2008 Ford Taurus. How can we help you, Chris? You’re on Bumper to Bumper Radio.
Chris: Hey guys, good afternoon. I love your program, I wanted to make sure you know that first off.
Dave and Matt: Thank you.
Chris: I got a 2008 Ford Taurus and I’ve got a real bad brake wobble. It’s usually anywhere higher than 45-50 miles per hour, you touch the brakes and the front wheels just starts going nuts. And it’s gotten to the point where it’s actually, the steel is showing on the very inside of the front two front tires. So, I mean, I’ve replaced them obviously, but it’s just driving me nuts.
Matt: My first thought is you have a brake problem, but now that you’re talking, break problems are not going to wear the tires out though. So, I’m beginning to wonder if you don’t have a problem with the steering, the suspension, a tire rod, or something like that, a control arm bushing, and when you step on the brakes it just makes it worse. You could have two problems, you could have a slightly warped brake rotor that appears even worse because you have a worn out front suspension component or steering component. So I think that it’s a matter of getting your car into a shop. There’s a couple great Bumper to Bumper Radio shops in Mesa, probably start off with a brake inspection and what we would call basically shaking down the front end.
Dave: Yeah, make sure there’s nothing loose. You know, blown struts, something like that causing those problems.
Matt: Yeah, more likely, but you know, there’s some debate, do warped rotors really cause the, is it warped rotors or pad transfers, the material transfer from the pads to the rotors. Dave and I went and toured Centric Brakes and that’s what their big thing was, “you’re really not warping the rotors.” But, I don’t know that I buy that 100% because real world, I’ve seen rotors on some cars and they’re warped like crazy.
Dave: For sure. Well, thanks for the call Chris. David, we’re going to get to your call off air. But, I wanted to thank Trevor for coming in to help our listeners with these emissions questions. I know it’s the great unknown and “gosh, I sit here in line in this car, am I going to pass? What’s going to happen at the other end?” I think people have a lot of questions about that. What would be the number one question you hear?
Trevor: I think the number one question, well, besides “how long am I going to have to wait in line?” which, check myeasycar.com, there’s a queue cam that you can actually see pictures of what’s on there and then the other one is “Am I going to pass if I have a check engine light on?” So, I want to make sure everybody knows, no, you will not pass, get that fixed before you come in!
Dave: And we made a good point, that the check engine light, because I’ve literally seen people come in the shop and there’s a little piece of black electrical tape right over the top of that check engine light. That check engine light doesn’t discriminate. It’s a yellow light, we say yellow lights don’t mean you got to pull right over because it’s an emergency, but it’s something you do have to deal with. It’s like caution! If you say, “oh, well that’s on because I have a bad gas cap.” Well, when you have a bad something else you’re going to have no idea that the state of the vehicle has changes, so it’s definitely worth not, keep your car fixed. One weed you can ignore, two weeds, three weeds, you know, keep your car, have some pride of ownership, take care of that thing. You know I see cars with 70,000 miles that are complete jalopies and I see the next one with 150,000 miles on it and it’s a real cream puff.
Matt: Yeah, and when you’re driving downtown someday, look at that big brown cloud over there and just think how much you could be contributing to that. I mean, you’re only a little teeny bit of it, but a lot of little teeny bits equal a big brown cloud.
Dave: Well, thanks for joining us. Thanks Brie for running the show. If you’re looking for a friendly, honest, competent shop you can find them at BumpertoBumperRadio.com. As we said before, make sure to Like Us on Facebook, we’re looking for some more friends, we’re running shy. Remember never to text and drive and clean up the air, and if you’ve got one of those smoky smoky lawnmowers it’s time for a new one with a catalytic converter on it.