by Pat Goss
This time we have a couple of unusual things that can cost drivers a lot of money. See, as cars have changed over the years, one thing that has changed right along with it is the ignition lock. Well, what does that have to do with anything? Well, built into that ignition lock on a modern automobile is probably going to be some form of anti-theft device, and that works in conjunction with the key to make it so the car can’t be started.
Well, what goes wrong here is those of you who have these huge collections of keys that hang from your ignition key, and as you drive down the road, every time the car moves that wad of keys swings back and forth, and as it does that it wears the key and it wears the tumblers in the ignition switch. No big deal you say? Well, maybe, maybe not, because ignition switches these days can be quite expensive. You may have to replace this whole assembly. Or it could be even worse. You might have to replace this whole assembly and all the other locks on the car, and that is decidedly expensive.
Not only that, but a lot of the keys these days because they have transponders built into them, well they’re expensive, and even if you don’t wear out the locks, you’re going to wear out the key, and keys start at 100 bucks and work up to $200 or $300 for some of the more exotic ones on the market.
Here’s something else. You know, you don’t think a whole lot about doors on your cars. They’re there. What goes wrong with them? Well, they rust out. Now what causes them to rust out is moisture. Most people think that doors are sealed, that water can’t get into them. Well, that’s not true. Water runs in the top of the door, along the glass, through the door, and out through drains in the bottom. We can see one of them right here. Well, over time those drains become clogged with dirt and leaves, and now the door holds moisture, and that moisture causes rust. So what do you do?
Well, you take a coat hanger, cut a piece out of the coat hanger, open the doors do this about once a year and take the piece of coat hanger and slide it up into the holes in the bottom of the door. Do all of the holes. There may be two, three, four, maybe even half a dozen of them. This cleans them out, keeps the door drained, and helps to prevent rust. But don’t look at the hole when you’re poking the coat hanger up in there, because if there’s water there, you’re going to get it right in the face.
If you have a question or comment, write to me. The address is MotorWeek, Owings Mills, MD, 21117.