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Old 07-01-2008, 09:44 PM   #21
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If you have a '77 to '02 GM or Chrysler product with a tilt or tilt/telescoping steering column, be aware...there is a little rack and pinion driven by the ignition key. They can break. Mine (in the '83 Eldorado) broke a couple weeks ago while in the McDonald's drive through...left me stuck unable to get the car out of park to roll it, let alone start it.

Unfortunately, the Chilton's manual for this car doesn't say much about this very important part (important if you are shutting off the engine while stopped). Fortunately, I had a mentor to help me through the repair process...a friend from work (who BTW just converted a VW bug to electric) who had been a mechanic at a nearby Oldsmobile dealer back in the '90s.

Fortunately, it's not that tough to fix this, once you know what you are doing. These things break often enough, and the cars which use them are common enough, that you can buy the replacements at Autozone. Be sure to get some fresh white lithium grease while you are at it, if your car is a quarter-century old, the grease in the steering column is going to be pretty much toast.
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Old 07-01-2008, 09:51 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhitePolarBear View Post
My rule of thumb of turning off engine at drive through:

1. McDonald - idle but put to Neutral.
2. Jac in a box - turn off your engine.
Since I always special order my burgers (no ketchup, mayonnaise, secret sauce, etc.), my orders always take longer than usual. I pretty much always have shut off my engine...going all the way back to the '70s...
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Old 07-01-2008, 10:19 PM   #23
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about the GM key lock thing... I've only turned the key to off, not lock, so I never worry about excessive wear to that gearing. I also don't put it in park, it'll start fine from neutral. I just hold the brake with my foot, rarely relying upon the Park gear lock. I've been fairly aggressive about turning it off at lights that I know will last more than 10 seconds, and never idling when making short stops. Usually its been about 15-25 seconds, some as much as a minute (I count). It's pretty good about firing up, staying under 1200rpms when warm. So far I'm about 30 miles beyond the last point in the tank, but I won't know for sure until I fill up tomorrow.
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Old 07-02-2008, 04:34 AM   #24
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Has a employee of UPS i can tell that they do shut the trucks off 90% of the time. but now to save more gas. and i'm not making this up. they are telling their drivers, if and when possible only take right turn. because at most red lights you can still turn right on red. but u have to wait longer to turn left. it's true, but not always applicable.
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Old 07-02-2008, 06:59 AM   #25
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Thanks for that input. Can you share with us all the details of UPS's policy? I've heard references to it, but never the whole thing.
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Old 07-02-2008, 03:46 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by RoadWarrior View Post
'96 up cars break even at 10secs apparently, however some say emissions break even at 5 mins, older carbed cars have been reported as having 5-10min break-evens, 85ish-96 cars are reported to have 2 min break evens.
A re-manufactured starter for my car is $240. Minus $45 core charge! ($195) I'm not going to use it any more than necessary.
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Old 07-02-2008, 10:27 PM   #27
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A re-manufactured starter for my car is $240. Minus $45 core charge! ($195) I'm not going to use it any more than necessary.
Recently replaced the starter in the Cadillac...about $40 for a rebuilt starter from Autozone w/lifetime warranty...free starters for as long as the rust holds together...I'm using it every chance I get! (It is pretty easy to change out, and comes with brand new solenoid!)
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Old 07-03-2008, 08:47 AM   #28
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I've replaced started in my 1990 Honda Civic, replacement starter from AutoZone was $60, from junkyard was $15.. takes approx. 2 hours of my time.. that was over 6000 miles ago.
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Old 07-03-2008, 08:57 AM   #29
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A re-manufactured starter for my car is $240. Minus $45 core charge! ($195) I'm not going to use it any more than necessary.
IMO they are more likely to die from rusting up than being used. They get water, salt, road grit splashed in them, get washed by coolant leaks, (Or just trying to change coolant in some vehicles) etc... Marvin's original starter finally went out last year, 20 years old, 190,000 miles, was down to about 1 coil working, wouldn't turn the motor near fast enough, didn't do a post mortem, but threw it in the garage somewhere, might just need a brush kit, but possibly rotted out rather than "worn".
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Old 07-03-2008, 01:50 PM   #30
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Gary was talking about DFCO (Deceleration Fuel Cut Off), which requires you to leave it in gear. While "coasting" in gear (actually engine braking), depending on the specific car and circumstances, the computer may shut off the fuel entirely and let the road keep turning the engine. If you intend to slow/stop, DFCO is more efficient than neutral. If not, you generally lose more energy (in the form of lost speed) than you spend (in gas) idling the engine in neutral, based on my experiments and experience.
Where can you find this information out if my car has this especially special ability of DFCO?
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