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Herald Sun - Motoring - - Readers Say -

Chok­ing to fix it

Q WHEN­EVER I take my foot off the ac­cel­er­a­tor at low speed in my 1981 Ford Fal­con GL 4.1-litre auto ute, es­pe­cially when turn­ing corners in town, at stop signs or stopped by traf­fic, the revs drop im­me­di­ately to zero and, un­less I am quick with the man­ual choke, the mo­tor cuts out. No splut­ter­ing, in­stant drop of revs and en­gine stops. When trav­el­ling on the open road there is no prob­lem un­til speed is re­duced to low and then the prob­lem hap­pens. As a con­se­quence I am driv­ing around town with ei­ther the choke out or my hand rest­ing near it, ready to pull it out. Two me­chan­ics and a carby ex­pert haven’t been able to find a fault. The carby ex­pert told me to give it a ‘‘good shake-up’’ by driv­ing to Wol­lon­gong and back. He also ad­vised me to use pre­mium fuel. Nei­ther sug­ges­tion worked.

Gra­hame Davies, email The fact that you can save it by us­ing the choke tells you it’s run- ning too lean. Have the carby re­con­di­tioned, it’s prob­a­bly worn. Make sure the idle mix­ture is set cor­rectly, and re­place the air fil­ter.

Dan­ger­ous dash

Q I FIND the ni­trate grey dash in my 2010 VE Com­modore SSV nearly im­pos­si­ble to read and some­what of a dan­ger when at­tempt­ing to drive within the speed limit and have to keep the dig­i­tal speedo dis­played. Twice I have con­tacted both the dealer and GM, but with no sat­is­fac­tion. In an at­tempt to make the dash read­able I have mod­i­fied a plas­tic mag­ni­fy­ing sheet to clip in, and de­spite driv­ing with the park­ers on, it is still bor­der­line, par­tic­u­larly when the sun shines on to the dash. What rem­edy is there to over­come this safety is­sue?

N. Con­nell, Hal­lam This is a hob­by­horse of mine, be­cause I think the de­sign­ers in this case have put form be­fore func­tion, and I agree with you the in­stru­ments are hard to read. Putting the low- beam lights on makes it a lit­tle eas­ier, but doesn’t fix the prob­lem. Hav­ing the dig­i­tal speed read­out on, as you have done, is about the only so­lu­tion for you, but if, like me, you don’t like dig­i­tal speed read­outs you’re out of luck. I urge peo­ple to check things like this when they testdrive a car be­fore pur­chase. That’s the time to iden­tify is­sues you might have with a car later on.

Speed­ing speedos

Q THE speedo in the new Subaru Im­preza R reads fast. When the speedo read­ing is 109km/h we are do­ing 100km/ h, which we es­tab­lished af­ter many com­par­isons with other cars and GPS sys­tems. I have been told this is com­mon with all new cars and is legally per­mis­si­ble. I think, as with a new car fit­ted with wheels and tyres by the man­u­fac­turer any dif­fer­ence above 2 per cent is un­ac­cept­able.

Peg Hawkes, Ma­clean, NSW The law al­lows speedos to read as much as 10 per cent fast, which makes yours legal. There’s not much you can do about it, other than make men­tal ad­just­ments as you drive.

Un­fit to drive

Q THE new demo FG Ford XR8 I bought last Oc­to­ber has been back to the work­shop five times with the same prob­lem — it surges and stops. It has done it four times in the mid­dle of on­com­ing traf­fic, leav­ing my wife in shock. The dealer has had the ve­hi­cle this time since midJan­uary. They have seen the prob­lem, but can’t fix it. I have rung Ford many times and they keep telling me un­til the prob­lem is di­ag­nosed they can’t do any­thing. So we’re go­ing around in cir­cles: the dealer won’t re­place any­thing and Ford won’t do any­thing. I don’t know what else to do. Have you heard of this prob­lem? Rod Har­ri­son, Quean­beyan, NSW No we haven’t heard of this is­sue, but

De­sign fault: The in­stru­ments in a 2010 VE Com­modore SSV are hard to read.

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