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CAN’T find a dipstick on my 2006 T5 VW diesel. I have been told you can’t check the oil level and there is no need to ever change auto fluid. Being an exmechanic, I don’t like dirty oils. Is this true or not?
Ken Ramsay, Kiama, NSW It should have a dipstick to check the engine oil; it should be identified by an orange knob. But it doesn’t have a dipstick to check the auto trans fluid. The trans is filled for life at the factory, and theoretically doesn’t need changing. What that means is beyond me, because ‘‘life’’ could mean anything. Like you, I like to keep track of oil levels and oil condition, and I would be changing the trans fluid on a regular basis.
having the 45,000km service done on my wife’s 2006 Camry at a non-Toyota service centre, I got a phone call informing me the rubber bushes in the rear trailing arm were worn and needed to be replaced. I was invited to look at the bushes while the car was on the hoist. I took the car back to the Toyota service centre only to be told that movement in the rear bushes was normal and they did not need to be replaced. Toyota also put the car on the hoist along with a new Camry and two older cars. All had movement in the bushes. Who is telling me the truth?
Margaret Lees, email Without seeing the parts, it’s hard to comment, but I think you could take the dealer’s advice. The dealer has demonstrated to you the movement is normal, and I think you could assume they would also be keen to replace the bushes if they needed to.
SERVICE WITH SMILE
I pushing my luck by hanging on to my 2003 Mazda2, which has done 197,000km without a hitch and is a real gem? My only expense has been fuel, servicing, tyres and batteries, but I keep expecting something major to happen. I was offered $3000 as a trade-in, but as I’m 18 months from possible retirement, I don’t want to get into huge debt again. Can I expect to continue with my good luck?
Paul Alderson, email It’s impossible to say you won’t strike trouble, but it would seem unlikely given your experience with the car. Servicing is the key to a long life with a car and if you have done that consistently, you can have confidence it will continue to give you good service.
have had problems selecting reverse gear in the 2007 Ford Territory I bought last year with 52,000km on the clock. My Ford dealer says it needs a changeover transmission because it had shavings in the oil. The dealer I bought it from didn’t want to know me because the warranty had expired by seven weeks. The Ford dealer fixed the problem, and contacted Ford because it should not have worn out with the low amount of kilometres it had done, but Ford doesn’t want to know about it because I am a second owner. The changeover transmission cost me $2760. The service manual shows all the servicing was properly done. Who should I see about someone reimbursing me? Surely it would be Ford’s responsibility because it was a defective part?
Kevin Trezise, Noble Park, It’s unusual for an auto to wear out at such low kilometres. You don’t say if it’s a four-speed or a six-speed, but at the cost you have been charged, I’d guess it’s the cheaper four-speed used in the 2WD Territory. If that is the case, they are susceptible to losing reverse because of solenoid failure. Replacing the solenoids is relatively simple for a transmission specialist, but a dealer might choose to replace
Quandary: A reader wants to know if he should trade in his reliable Mazda2.