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HAVE a 2002 VY Commodore and tow a 5m pop-top caravan. Are there any modifications I should do, such as fitting a transmission fluid cooler, to the vehicle to eliminate any possible problems?
Graham Hoffmann, email Fitting an external transmission fluid cooler would be one you could think of, particularly if you are doing a lot of towing. If you’re not having the transmission serviced regularly and the fluid changed, it is a wise thing to do.
Q MY MITSUBISHI Magna has done nearly 90,000km and is due for a timing-belt replacement, and I was wondering if I should have the water pump replaced at the same time? If so, what would I have to pay for parts and labour to have it done?
Brian Mundy, email The Magna generally doesn’t have a problem with the water pump, and Mitsubishi specialist Graham Lewis tells us he has customers who have had three belt changes without changing the water pump. He does, however, advise checking for any coolant staining, and if found, then change the pump. Otherwise, the pump generally doesn’t give any trouble.
brake pedal on my 2009 Toyota Prado feels as if it reaches the floor and needs to be pumped to stop the car quickly. The brakes may be adequate in most situations, but I need to be careful when pulling up quickly going downhill or when towing. I have been reporting the problem to the dealer since the car was new, but they told me the brakes are fine, though they have been bled and adjusted every time. Is this is an issue with other Prados? Can I get an independent check? If I upgrade the brakes, I may void the warranty.
J. Stevens, email It’s not something that has been reported to us at carsGuide, so it would seem it’s not an issue worrying other owners. I suggest you find an owner of a similar car and ask about their experience, and drive their car if they let you. That way you will have an idea if it’s just your car or is more widespread. Also consult a brake expert who can give you a report you can use if you want to pursue it with Toyota. I wouldn’t be upgrading the brakes yet, because it could affect your warranty. In any case it’s something Toyota should do if there is a problem.
MONTH after buying my 2009 Ford Fiesta new, a knocking noise was discovered in the front of the car. The dealer told me to fill the car with premium fuel. Other mechanics said there was nothing wrong, but the noise is still there and is getting worse on acceleration.
Hollie Johnson, email The car is still under warranty, so take it back to the dealer and ask that it be fixed again. If they can’t fix it, ask them to consult Ford about the problem. Persist until it is fixed. Long-term pinging can damage the engine.
INTO THE FRAY
Wayne Jarvie, who is concerned about the wear on the seats in his Nissan Dualis, I’m concerned the seats in my 2010 Nissan X-Trail are also wearing. After 15,000km the back of the driver’s seat was pilling and fraying in the lumbar
Hot work: a reader’s 2002 VY Commodore is towing a pop-top caravan.