This is a catchall category for those things that just “feel funny.” Use the process of elimination to check anything that may cause your vehicle to run roughly: hoses, tires, brakes, oil levels, spark plug connections, the cooling system, clutch, gearshift, and steering linkage.
Here are a few specific sensations that you may encounter.
Directional signals are vitally important for communicating your intentions to other drivers. If the signals malfunction, they should be fixed immediately — hand signals just don’t do the job. Here’s what to do in a variety of situations: If all your directional signal lights don’t go on, check the fuse.
instructions for finding your fuse box and replacing fuses. If all your directional signal lights go on but don’t blink, your flasher unit is bad. This unit usually plugs directly into the fuse box, so look for trouble there first. After you replace the bulb or fuse that’s defective, the dashboard flashers go back to normal.
Isn’t that lovely If both signal lights on one side don’t go on, check to see whether the bulbs need replacing. If they don’t, the signals may not be grounded properly. Your mechanic can tell you whether this is the case.
If there’s no light on your dashboard when you move your directional signal lever, either the bulb on your dashboard flasher is out or the unit is malfunctioning. If one signal light is flashing faster or slower than the others, check to see whether the bulb is the proper one for your vehicle.
A heavy-duty bulb will flash faster than a standard bulb. Also check for loose connections or corrosion around the socket the bulb fits into. Be sure to replace burned-out bulbs at once. They usually cost very little, and changing them involves little labor.
Headlights are more expensive because they have to be replaced as a unit (for instructions).
Whether your vehicle dies on the road or in front of your house, it’s always a time of unrivaled panic and stress. But an informed, well-organized approach to diagnosing your sick monster’s ills can pay off by getting you moving again with a minimum loss of time, money, and composure. Whenever you encounter a term set in this font, you’ll find it defined in the glossary in Appendix A.
Getting Off the Road Safely
If you have reason to believe that your vehicle is having a problem, try to get to the right-hand shoulder of the road as soon as possible, especially if you’re on a highway. Very often, if a vehicle is going to do its swan song while in motion, it will give you a couple of hints first.
If you can recognize those hints as signs of impending disaster, you’ll be able to get out of traffic before the car dies completely. All the following symptoms are good reasons to head for the side of the road immediately: Your vehicle experiences a sudden loss of power, or you suddenly have to floor the accelerator to maintain speed or to keep moving at all. A warning light comes on. Your engine suddenly runs roughly.
The engine is misfiring. You hear unfamiliar noises. Your vehicle is pulling to one side. The pavement hasn’t changed but your tires are no longer rolling along smoothly. You have a flat tire. As you pull your vehicle off the road, keep the following safety procedures.