by Pat Goss
GOSS: This time we’re going to get some interesting information from our online parts guru, Mr. Tom Taylor. Tom, welcome to Goss’ garage.
TOM TAYLOR: Thanks for having me, pat
GOSS: Alright, what did you bring here?
TOM TAYLOR: Parts from several different systems that I thought your viewers would find interesting. This is the fuel pump assembly, cars have this in the gas tank. Inside the fuel pump this is the sending unit for the gauge, and people will see their gauge will be full then it’ll drop to empty.
What is happening here is there are electrical contacts here that wear out as this arm goes up and down, or the bushing itself will wear out and you’ll get fluctuation, the gauge will be erratic. Some vehicles have two of these, because the gas tank is like this vehicle, saddle shaped, wrapped around the driveshaft, so you’ll have two of these and the gauge might be…it won’t go above half or it won’t drop below a quarter tank, that’s a sign that just one of these needs to be replaced. I usually recommend replacing the whole thing versus individual parts, because once you have it out, the other parts are likely to fail soon. So, get a new fuel pump, get a new strainer.
The second part is a new part that shows systems don’t necessarily improve or they have some bugs to work out. Its’s an electric water pump. Electric pumps are becoming more and more common on hybrid cars, and this out of a BMW, the water pump that sends water through the radiator and such, but the problem here is the coolant is going through these pipes and the electrical connector is right here, so if this plastic cracks internally or this plastic is compromised in some way you can get coolant being pumped through the electrical connector into the wiring harness, and the wiring harness is wrapped with tape or conduit, and it can travel all the way to a computer, damage the computer, it can show up in your tail light, it can show up in the interior of the car, create all sorts of hard to diagnose problems, and this is the cause.
GOSS: Yeah, just try explaining that to your customer, that their tail light is full of coolant, and they just don’t grasp it.
TOM TAYLOR: I imagine. And this last one is just a fun thing i thought it would help resolve a conflict spouses might be having if they’re arguing, hey, is it wasting gas if I have the fan turned way up, or the heat and A.C., should I turn that down to save gas. Well this is a blower motor resistor from an older vehicle, and older vehicles if you turn down the fan the excess current is just going through these coils and heating them up, so you’re not saving any gas, not saving any electricity, so it doesn’t matter where you have that switch, but on newer vehicles it’s a computer cycling the blower motor on and off very quickly depending how fast you have the settings set. So, theoretically if you turn down the fan, the motor is cycling less frequently and you could save a tiny bit of electricity, maybe a cup of gas over the life of the vehicle. At least now you know the answer to that to settle the argument with your spouse.
GOSS: Right, well that’s one way to look at it. That’s for sure. Tom, thank you so much, and if you have a question or comment, drop me a line right here at Motorweek.