Oil may be the cul­prit

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Ask Smithy -


THE 2001 AU II Ford Fal­con I re­cently bought jerks for about five me­tres if you don’t gun the en­gine in neu­tral or in park be­fore start­ing off. The last owner said this had al­ways hap­pened and Ford was aware of it, but could do noth­ing about it. I’ve had the trans­mis­sion oil changed and a new in­hib­iter switch fit­ted, but to no avail. What can I do?

Neil Forbes, e-mail It’s a pity you didn’t ob­serve this prob­lem when you had a test drive in the car be­fore buy­ing it. Make sure the oil level is cor­rect; to do that, the en­gine needs to be run­ning and the car parked on level ground. An­other thing to check is whether the seal on the oil fil­ter that is at­tached to the trans­mis­sion valve body is dam­aged or leak­ing, as this could cause prob­lems. Take it to a me­chanic and have it checked.


I HAVE just bought a 2009 VWJetta and it’s a great car, but I have found that the speedo read­ing is out by 9km/h. I was told that if I changed to the win­ter tyre set­ting on the com­puter that it would bring it back in line. I was also told that it is within the legal limit.

Robert Daniel, email Chang­ing the com­puter to the win­ter tyre set­ting should have made the speedo more ac­cu­rate be­cause it would have as­sumed a larger tyre was fit­ted. Be­ing 9km/h out at 100km/h is within the law, pro­vided the speedo doesn’t read slow. There’s not much you can do apart from per­haps fit­ting a larger-di­am­e­ter tyre.


OUR 2004 Nis­san X-Trail has done 186,000km and is us­ing about 1.5 litres of oil over 3000km. Is this ex­ces­sive?

Leo Cleary, e-mail

IT is ex­ces­sive, but not un­known with Nis­san en­gines. Nis­san spe­cial­ist Jerry New­man sug­gests the oil could be too light, so try 10w-40 or 20w-50. Some deal­ers are us­ing an oil that is too light for some older en­gines, like a 5w-40, be­cause it is eas­ier to stock one oil in­stead of a num­ber of dif­fer­ent oils. Change the oil to a 10W-40. If that doesn’t stop the oil us­age, change to a heav­ier 20W-50.


I was think­ing of fit­ting a nudge bar to my 2009 Tiguan, but was told Volk­swa­gen doesn’t make them. What do you think about nudge bars?

Michael, Ul­ladulla, NSW I’Mnot in favour of them un­less you’re in the bush and they have a pur­pose. Fit­ting them to a ve­hi­cle with airbags

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