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Driveability Diagnostics

February 2014



Front Brake Rattle

Clutch Pedal Issues

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Nissan Driveability Diagnostics








Volume 36, No. 2


Diagnostic Solutions:

Tech Update:

Nissan Driveability

‘Toe’-ing The Mark

Brake Copper Issue

& Check Engine Light Issues

Import Specialist Contributor Gary Goms advises that many independent front suspensions often require a “custom alignment” to compensate for variations in suspension height caused by uneven loading.

New legislation is changing what parts you can install to prevent debris from reaching watersheds. Brake & Front End Editor Andrew Markel outlines regulations that will phase in over the next decade to reduce copper levels in brake pads and shoes.

Import Specialist Contributor Bob Dowie discusses some typical driveability issues that will bring a Nissan into your bay with a check engine lamp diagnosis. Those attention-seeking Nissans spell service and repair opportunities for your shop.

ImportCar Staff 330.670.1234 Publisher Jim Merle, ext. 280

Managing Editor Chris Crowell, ext. 268

Graphic Designer Kelly Gifford, ext. 249

Circulation Manager Pat Robinson, ext. 276

Editor Mary DellaValle, ext. 221

Technical Editor Larry Carley

Ad Services (Materials) Cindy Ott, ext. 209

Subscription Services Maryellen Smith, ext. 288


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6 Editor’s Notebook Contributing Writers

8 News Update

Bob Dowie, Village Auto Works, Chester, NY Gary Goms, formerly of Midland Engine Electronics & Diagnostics, Buena Vista, CO

14 Gonzo’s Toolbox

Bob Howlett, The Swedish Solution, Orange Village, OH

30 Tech Feature: Drivetrain

Scott “Gonzo” Weaver, Superior Auto Electric, Tulsa, OK


34 TPMS Update


42 Import Tech Tips

Bob Dowie, Village Auto Works, Chester, NY Chris Klinger, Precision Incorporated, Tucson, AZ Steve Louden, Louden Motorcar Services, Dallas, TX

45 Essentials (New Products) 47 RAPID RESPONSE


48 Classifieds

Frank Scandura, Frank’s European Service, Las Vegas and Henderson, NV Joe Stephens, Stephens Automotive, Palatine, IL John Volz, Volz Bros., Grass Valley, CA

52 NASCAR Performance

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In Memoriam Founder of Babcox Publications

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IMPORTCAR (ISSN 1069-4714) (February 2014, Volume 36, Number 2): Published monthly by Babcox Media, Inc., 3550 Embassy Parkway, Akron, OH 44333 U.S.A. Phone (330) 670-1234, FAX (330) 670-0874. Periodical postage paid at Akron, OH 44333 and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to IMPORTCAR, 3550 Embassy Parkway, Akron, OH 44333. IMPORTCAR is a trademark of Babcox Media, Inc. registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark office. All rights reserved. A limited number of complimentary subscriptions are available to individuals who meet the qualification requirements. Call (330) 670-1234, Ext. 260, to speak to a subscription services representative or FAX us at (330) 670-5335. Paid Subscriptions are available for non-qualified subscribers at the following rates: U.S.: $69 for one year. Canada: $89 for one year. Canadian rates include GST. Ohio residents add current county sales tax. Other foreign rates/via air mail: $129 for one year. Payable in advance in U.S. funds. Mail payment to IMPORTCAR, P.O. Box 75692, Cleveland, OH 44101-4755. VISA, MasterCard or American Express accepted. Member BPA International, Inc. Founded 1979. 䊚2014 by Babcox Media, Inc.


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[ Editor’sNotebook

By Mary DellaValle|EDITOR

Age Of Convenience Dictates Streamlined Communication Methods


he manner in which the majority of your customers prefer to communicate about vehicle service is changing, as their need for convenient and easy information access accelerates. You likely have noticed that their attitudes and expectations are vastly different than what you were used to encountering. So, there are great opportunities for every business owner to reach their customers and prospects more effectively by embracing e-communication channels like email, social media (Facebook/Twitter) and texting. Not only do various electronic communication sources enable you to interact with your customers more efficiently, they also allow you to market to your customers more cost effectively than previous methods,

Mary DellaValle,


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notes John Volz, Jr., co-owner of Volz Bros. Automotive Repair in Grass Valley, CA, which has been in business since his father started the shop in 1982. Volz has found that email is a powerful tool in the shop’s communication and marketing arsenal, not only by informing customers but also building the shop’s brand in the process.* While getting a customer’s email address can sometimes be difficult, Volz found that asking customers for their email address at the time of payment was the most effective approach. “We found that if we take the time to explain the advantages of email correspondence, many of our customers embrace the approach.” Email correspondence advantages: • Sending customer invoices and service reminders electronically, which cuts down on paper usage and makes it easier for customers to track their service history. • Customers are able to read and respond to emails during non-busi-

ness hours, making communication more efficient and more likely to occur. • Customers are able to make an appointment after hours with a few simple keystrokes. • Allows you to keep customers informed of upcoming company events, especially if your shop is involved in the local community. Facebook is also a great communications tool, allowing constant, real-time dialog with your customers, and it’s very visible and powerful, continues Volz. “I’m amazed at how much interaction we get on our Facebook page on a daily basis. Customers love it. We use this channel of communication to talk about what we’re doing in our community and what we’re working on in the bays, and it gives our customers a fun way to interact with us.” Taking the time to proactively reach customers through a variety of electronic communication methods will boost customer engagement and build your brand. Time well spent, wouldn’t you say? IC

*To learn more about John Volz Jr.’s perspective on this topic, go to our sister publication Shop Owner magazine’s website, and search for his Embracing E-Communications article.

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[ NewsUpdate Technicians Can Earn ‘Quick Rewards’ Through Monroe Quick-Strut Promotion The Monroe Quick-Strut “Quick Rewards” promotion awards technicians a $30 Visa prepaid card for each pair of qualifying Monroe Quick-Strut replacement assemblies they install. The “Quick Rewards” scorecard promotion from the Monroe shocks and struts brand is available through Feb. 28, 2014. To learn more about the Monroe “Quick Rewards” scorecard promotion, contact your Monroe supplier or representative. For more information about Monroe ride control products, visit, or call (734) 384-7809. Monroe Quick-Strut units include all of the OE-style components required for a comprehensive strut repair. The Quick-Strut assembly design reduces installation time by eliminating the need to disassemble components and compress the coil spring and helps eliminate ride control comebacks commonly caused by failure to replace worn parts.

Standard Motor Products Receives Five Alliance Awards Standard Motor Products, Inc. (SMP) was recently honored by the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance, Inc. (Alliance), receiving five awards during the annual shareholders’ winter meeting held Dec. 7-12, 2013 at the Turnberry Isle Resort in Aventura, FL. SMP was recognized for its outstanding training support and outstanding shipping performance. “Receiving five awards is an extraordinary accomplishment and we are very proud to share these prestigious honors with all of those who work extremely hard every day to make sure our business and partnership with the Alliance continues to grow and flourish. I’d especially like to acknowledge the fine work our training division has done in support of the Alliance group,” said Ken Wendling, vice president warehouse distribution sales, SMP.” SMP received the outstanding training support award for the 12th time. News continues on page 12


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[ NewsUpdate ALLDATA Launches Manage Online, Android App ALLDATA has launched its cloud-based shop management system, ALLDATA Manage Online as well as the Android version of its ALLDATA Mobile app. ALLDATA collaborated with MAM Software to develop the online version of its shop management system. The company says the online version of ALLDATA Manage retains all the program’s profitability features, including fast and easy write-ups and invoices, integrated labor and parts costs, online parts ordering from the leading catalogs, real-time profit monitoring, “smart” shop jobs and more. ALLDATA Mobile app, originally launched for the iPad, offers portable access to ALLDATA’s OEM diagnostic and repair information. The app is designed to increase productivity by eliminating the need for a technician to leave the vehicle in order to refer to a laptop or desktop computer. When paired with a Bluetooth connection adapter, ALLDATA Mobile for Android offers vehicle connectivity through the OBD port. A technician can read VIN information and pull standard P Codes, which are linked to specific manufacturers’ repair articles. P Codes also can be stored by VIN, as well as cleared. The system is easy to use, allowing fast searches for procedures, diagrams, diagnostic data and technical service bulletins, according to ALLDATA.

CARQUEST Auto Parts Announced ‘Ten To Win’ Sweepstakes Grand Prize Winner Sammy Guinn of Guinn’s Tire & Auto in Marietta, GA, is the 2013 CARQUEST “Ten To Win” Sweepstakes Grand-prize winner. Guinn is the winner of a fully restored 1965 Ford Mustang. He took delivery of his prize on Jan. 18 at the Barrett-Jackson Auction in Scottsdale, AZ. The CARQUEST “Ten to Win” Sweepstakes was a 10-month contest, held February 2013 to November 2013, exclusively for professional customers of CARQUEST Auto Parts stores. Each month featured a customer winning a trip to the 2014 Scottsdale BarrettJackson Auction and a chance to win the fully restored 1965 Ford Mustang. Guinn is owner of Guinn’s Tire & Auto, a family-owned and operated business in the Marietta, GA., area for more than 35 years. His business is also a member of TECH-NET Professional Auto Service. IC Go to


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[ Gonzo’sToolbox

By Scott “Gonzo” Weaver, owner Superior Auto Electric, Tulsa, OK

Lessons From A Day Being Out Of My ‘Comfort Zone’


t’s the same routine Monday through Friday: My average day begins with the usual commute to work, the obligatory coffee and the turn of the key to the front door of the shop. I unlock the overheads, do any morning paperwork I have waiting and get the day started. Occasionally, I’ll come in early or stay later than normal, but, for the most part, every working day has the same basic routine. Being under the dash or hood of the modern car is my comfort zone, but it doesn’t hurt to get out of my comfort zone from time to time. Like a lot of people, that day-in, dayout grind can give me a snapping attitude. I could use a reminder now and then that what I do for a living ain’t all that bad, and I owe my customers a great deal of gratitude for their patronage and for putting up with this snarly old mechanic. You can take those average days in your own little comfort zone for granted and forget there is more to what makes the world go around besides the next car you’re working on. Sometimes, it might take a little nudge from an outside source to get you to realize it.

GOODBYE COMFORT ZONE Recently, I took a few days off and ventured out on a road trip with my wife to one of her “comfort zones.” OK, I was “volun-told” by my wife, but I didn’t complain too much. It was three days of little old ladies, sewing machines and quilts. Yes, quilts. My wife was the guest speaker for a quilting retreat. I didn’t have any tools, scanners or hoods to hide from the more than 100 women with scissors,

big fancy (expensive) sewing machines and colorful fabric who were in attendance. There weren’t many husbands at the retreat, and the hotel staff had its hands full, so they kept me busy as their bellboy (minus the quirky cap, of course), carrying their machines from the parking lot to their classrooms. If you ask my wife, she’ll tell you, “Oh, he fusses but he loves every minute of it.” I wasn’t concerned about what she was telling them anyway. I just pulled my ball cap down a bit tighter and asked the next woman with a sewing machine, “Where do ya’ want this one moved to, ma’am?” This whole

Scott “Gonzo” Weaver,


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[ Gonzo’sToolbox experience made me think of what it’s like for a noncar person to enter an automotive repair shop. The actual interaction with the service writer or mechanic can be intimidating. For me, a weekend with the wife surrounded by thread and quilts was, believe it or not, intimidating, especially when one of them asked me something about their sewing machine or quilting. Look, I know what a PCM and a ball joint are, but I haven’t a clue about flying geese or half-square triangles. And these women loved to rub it in. Uncomfortable? Yes. Intimidating? Well, let’s put it this way: When I was stuck in front of a sewing machine and clued in on which buttons to push to make it sew, they got quite a chuckle out of watching some big, burly guy fumble around with a sharp needle and try to hold a thin piece of fabric with his big, nubby fingers.

I’d like to think I could learn how to operate any sort of machinery, even one of these ultra-expensive sewing machines, but these women are in a league of their own. They made it look so easy, but I can’t even figure out how to sew a straight line. I certainly can take some lessons from the quilting retreat. The women did their best to make me feel comfortable, even if I did have to endure a little ribbing. I’ve got to keep this in mind when I’m back at the shop. I should try harder not to be so intimidating, work to keep things on common ground, and not make it so overwhelming for customers, especially those who are uncomfortable with a stranger they just met work on their car. I got it ladies — thank you. Now, the other question is, can I incorporate some of the experience of being out of my comfort zone into my average day? I’m sure going to try. IC

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[ DiagnosticSolutions

RIDE HEIGHT By Gary Goms, Import Specialist Contributor

‘Toe’-ing The Mark How Ride Height Affects Toe Angle


ow can a mysterious case of tire wear occur in a perfectly aligned vehicle? It happens and the answers aren’t always simple. To better explain, let’s go back a few decades when I aligned a 1983 Mitsubishi rear-wheel drive (RWD) pickup, only to have it return a month later with a tire scuffing complaint. Although the outside edge of the right front tire showed evidence of toe-related wear, the current toe angle was 0.100 inches, which is within the Mitsubishi’s +0.080” to +0.350“ specification. Perplexed, I decided to have my helper sit on the open tailgate. The toe angle immediately jumped from its original 0.100 inches to 0.500 inches. My conclusion was that many independent front suspensions often require a “custom alignment” to compensate for variations in ride height caused by uneven loading.

TOE ANGLE DEFINED While, in theory, a rear axle’s thrust angle should align with the geometric centerline of the vehicle, it often doesn’t correctly align due to manufacturing errors and minor collision damage. With that said, individual wheel toe angle should be measured from the rear axle thrust angle rather than the geometric center. Zero toe angle is present when both tires are parallel to the center thrustline. Positive toe is present when the front of both tires angle toward the thrust line, while negative toe is present when the front of both tires angle away from the thrust line. Total toe angle is the sum of the right- and lefthand toe angles. The toe angle on many older vehicles is displayed in fractions of


February 2014 |

an inch, whereas toe angle on later-model vehicles is displayed in degrees.

‘BUMP’ STEERING Since many 4WD trucks are equipped with solid front axles, the toe angle won’t change with ride height. What does change is the horizontal angle of the drag link (which connects the tie rod to the steering gear) in relation to the front axle. When

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[ DiagnosticSolutions


the drag link angle becomes too severe in relation to the solid front axle, a condition called “bump steer” exists, in which the front wheels actually change direction as the suspension is compressed or extended. In addition, the steering gear is forced off-center, which can aggravate steering wander.

TURNING RADIUS When the vehicle is driven around a corner, the inner wheel turns through a shorter radius than the outer wheel. To reduce tire scrub and improve steering response, the steering geometry forces the inner wheel to turn one or two degrees more than the outer wheel. This geometry forces total toe angle from a positive to a negative value. Turning radius is most affected by bent steering arms and knuckles. In any case, a bent steering arm or knuckle can

cause tire scrub, even when the toe angle is aligned to specification in a straight-ahead position.

INDEPENDENT FRONT SUSPENSION A bump steer phenomenon can occur with an independent front suspension. To illustrate, let’s look at the next two photos to analyze the effects of an increase in ride height on a typical SLA and MacPherson strut suspension system. See Photo 1 below and Photo 2 on page 22. To analyze the effects of ride height on independent suspension geometry, increase the front ride height through one-inch increments when the vehicle is parked on your alignment machine. You should see a pronounced change, not only in toe angle, but in camber angle as well. Use the examples to visualize how alignment angles might

Photo 1: Due to the upper control arm swinging through a shorter arc than the lower control arm on this SLA suspension, this tie rod might force the steering knuckle to a toe-out position as ride height increases.

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[ DiagnosticSolutions


change on SLA or MacPherson strut suspensions when ride height is increased or decreased. If the vehicle you’re aligning has a trailer hitch mounted, ask your customer how often he uses his trailer and how heavily it might be loaded. Photo 2: In contrast to the SLA suspension on page 20, the tie rod Similarly, if the geometry on this MacPherson strut suspension might force the vehicle is a pickup steering knuckle to a toe-in position as ride height increases. truck, check for an uneven load distribution of tools and materials in in tread depth can indicate the the bed. If those tools or materineed for a slight change in toe als constitute a daily or average angle. See Photo 3 on page 24. load, re-distribute that load and align the vehicle to specification. ROAD CROWN If the truck is carrying an unusuCORRECTIONS ally heavy load, the truck should be unloaded before aligning the Remember that a driver steers front wheels. Whatever the situatoward the center of the road to tion, remember that you might correct for road crown. Excessive have to increase or decrease the positive toe angle forces the pastoe angle to reduce tire wear. senger-side tire to “push” the car toward the center of the road. Excessive negative toe angle ANALYZING TIRE WEAR forces the driver’s-side tire to “drag” the car toward the center When analyzing tire wear, of the road. Therefore, if the wear remember that modern tires have is present on the outside edge of much more flexible sidewalls and the passenger-side tire, the vehimore rigid tread belts. This cle might be experiencing excesmakes them more tolerant of sive positive toe angle. deviations from the “ideal” camIf the wear is evident at the ber and toe angles. The most efinside edge of the driver’s-side fective method I’ve found for tire, the vehicle might be experianalyzing tire wear is the simple encing excessive negative toe. process of checking tread depth The severity of these wear patacross the tire tread. In many terns depends on the severity of cases, a minor variation of 1/32” Go to


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[ DiagnosticSolutions


An excessive change in toe the road crown and the conangle and excessive vertical dition of the suspension and movement in the idler arm steering linkage. Worn idler indicates excessive wear. arms and tie rod ends will With the alignment heads in tend to aggravate the above place and wheel run-out wear patterns on vehicles corrected, record the current with a parallelogram-type toe angle. steering linkage. If it’s an RWD vehicle, handTo determine if a tire wear press between the fronts of the pattern is caused by positive wheels to simulate tire rolling or negative toe, stroke your Photo 3: Routinely measuring tire tread depth is a resistance and record that fingertips across the tire quick way of catching a faulty camber or toe angle value. If it’s an AWD or FWD, tread. If the tread feels adjustment before the tires are ruined. hand-press at the rear of the smooth going toward the front wheels to simulate forward drive thrust. In most tire’s inner edge and rough coming back to the cases, the toe angle should go to zero as the tires are outer edge, the vehicle might be experiencing hand-pressed. If the toe angle change exceeds specifiexcessive positive toe. The opposite effect will indication, excessive cumulative wear is present in the cate excessive negative toe. steering linkage. It’s also important to differentiate between toe Next, I compare the tread wear pattern with the and camber wear by remembering that positive or existing toe angle. If the tires are worn and the toe negative camber wear produces smooth tread wear angle is correct, suspect an excessive change in ride in either direction. Remember that excessive wear height caused by unusual loading patterns. Check in the upper or lower ball joints or pivot bushings will generally create excessive positive toe, whereas the toe angle by increasing the vehicle height in one-inch increments. If the toe angle coincides with impact damage is more likely to cause excessive the wear patterns mentioned above, you might be negative toe angle. dealing with a loading problem rather than an alignment or wear issue. BASIC ALIGNMENT TECHNIQUES Installing suspension and ride control components that are designed to increase the load-bearing As always, the first step is to check for specified air capacity of the vehicle can minimize alignment pressure. Next, inspect the tires for uneven tread problems that are caused by extreme variations in wear, sizing, tread pattern and circumference. Due ride height. In addition, an incorrect camber or toe to the requirements for anti-lock braking (ABS), angle can often be remedied by adjusting torsion vehicle stability control (VSC), and all-wheel drive bar height. (AWD), all four tires should vary no more than 1/4” Adjusting the toe angle to the maximum or miniin circumference and be of the same casing and mum side of the specification can often reduce tire tread design. Ball joint, tie rod, idler arm and suswear. In doing that, remember that too much negapension wear should also be checked. And since a tive toe angle will aggravate steering wander and suspension system can’t maintain alignment without that too much positive toe will reduce steering good rebound control, don’t forget to also check the response. Within those windows of adjustment, condition of the shock absorbers and struts. adjusting a vehicle’s alignment specifications to My own technique for checking idler arm wear is meet real-world driving conditions can often to lift the right front wheel by the lower control arm reduce uneven tire wear complaints. IC and attempt to turn the wheel in and out by hand.


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[ TechUpdate

BRAKE COPPER ISSUE By Andrew Markel, Editor, Brake & Front End Magazine

New Environmental Legislation To Change The Parts You Sell And Install New legislation is changing what parts can be installed on your customers’ vehicles. The goal of these mandates is to reduce emissions and prevent harmful chemicals from reaching waterways. The spirit of the new regulations is to preserve public assets like parks and streams that improve the quality of life for state citizens. But the question always has to be: How will this affect the safety and economics of our industry? There could be an unintended cost to society if people can’t afford to have their cars serviced, or it becomes too cost prohibitive to develop environmentally friendly products.

WHEEL WEIGHT EXAMPLE The EPA reported that about 1.6 million lbs. of lead falls off vehicles each year. Like copper, lead can be toxic for watersheds. While 11 states have legislation concerning lead wheel weights on the books or waiting approval, manufacturers of wheel weights have moved toward products that are lead-free to avoid costly regulation. The solution was alternative materials like zinc and tungsten. Manufacturers complied with the law and today it’s hard to find a lead wheel weight.


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BRAKE FRICTION MATERIAL Brake pads and shoes pose a more difficult challenge to manufacturers. Copper and other toxic substances used in friction material are ending up in rivers and streams. This is a result of brake dust migrating from the friction material to the road. The brake dust is then washed into storm drains or the watershed next to roadways. Copper is used in brake pads and shoes as an abrasive to create friction. But to some fish, copper can inhibit their sense of smell and prevent their ability to find their spawning grounds. If copper concentration hits critical levels, it can kill microorganisms that are the critical link in the aquatic food chain. Because of this issue, California is phasing in regulations over the next decade to reduce levels of copper. The January 2014 deadline necessitated that cadmium, chromium and other heavy metal levels in friction materials are to be no more than 0.1% by weight. By 2021, copper must be reduced to 5% or less of total material content by weight, and brake pads and shoes must contain no more than 0.5% copper by 2025. Beginning in January 2013, brake manufacturers that were selling in Washington State had to report the use of copper, nickel, zinc and antimony in brake friction materials. In order to comply with

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[ TechUpdate the Better Brakes Law, brake pads may contain only trace amounts of asbestos, cadmium, chromium, lead and mercury in 2014. But by 2015, all new brake pad inventory in Washington State must be certified and labeled to indicate the absence of these same materials to comply with the law. Oregon, New York, Rhode Island and Hawaii also are in the process of drafting legislation to limit copper in brake pads. There is no direct replacement for copper in non-asbestos organic friction materials. Manufacturers instead have to tune the formulations so copper content is below mandated levels, while keeping performance and noise levels the same as before. For some brake pad manufacturers that specialize in semimetallic pads, the ban does not change how their pads are formulated. For manufacturers that specialize in adhesive-type friction pads, it has been difficult to get the level of copper to legal levels. The full effect of these brake pad copper laws is more than 10 years out, but many components of the laws are being phased in right now, as mentioned earlier. Manufacturers, distributors and “installers� have 10 years to sell off existing, unapproved inventory. The laws put new technical and financial burdens on friction material manufacturers. Under the Washington State law, for example, friction material formu-

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lations have to be tested by an approved laboratory and the applications that use this material must be submitted so the right label can appear on the box. Every step in the process costs money and time. These burdens may become so great that some manufacturers could get out of these markets completely.

WHAT’S NEXT? As states try to improve air and water quality, any product that contains harmful chemicals will come under scrutiny. Plus, more and more states are looking at annual emissions testing to ensure that older vehicles are serviced properly over their longer lifespans. So, the copper issue could just be the tip of the iceberg. IC

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[ TechFeature

DRIVETRAIN DIAGNOSTICS By Andrew Markel, Editor, Brake & Front End Magazine

Solving Transmission Electronic Control Problems With In-The-Car Diagnostics


roubleshooting an automatic transmission can be one of the most intimidating diagnostic procedures at a shop. The first reaction is typically, “We don’t do that type of work.” But there is profit in performing drivetrain diagnostics and “in-the-car” repairs. The modern automatic transmission and attached drivetrain has many “mechatronic” parts that control and protect traditional clutches and planetary gears. These devices shift the gears, lock the clutches and regulate the fluid pressures. Most of these items can be diagnosed and replaced while the transmission is still in the vehicle.

TOOLING UP Special tools are often needed when diagnosing transmission problems and when overhauling units. In days gone by, when transmissions were purely mechanical and hydraulic, all you needed was a set of high-pressure gauges to check line pressures. You also needed a vacuum gauge to check the engine’s intake vacuum and the integrity of the vacuum modulator. But with today’s electronic controls, you need a scan tool, scope and a multimeter. Transmission codes and sensor data on late-model vehicles are accessed through the OBD II diagnostic connector and the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) diagnostic gateway module. On some vehicles, the information is often found in a separate Transmission Control Module (TCM) or Body Control Module (BCM). Either way,


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you’ll need a scan tool to access fault codes and operating data. A scan tool can also help you check for communication faults between the PCM and transmission controller if the vehicle has separate computers. Problems here will typically cause the transmission to go into a “limp in” mode that may lock it in second gear. Some transmission problems may set a fault code and turn on the MIL lamp, so it’s important to always scan the PCM or transmission module for codes if there’s a transmission-related complaint or driveability code. Some engine sensor failures (for example, the throttle position sensor, MAP sensor or vehicle speed sensor) can also affect the operation of the transmission. So, it may be necessary to also check these sensors. If you find a transmission fault code, you may have to check the resistance of a solenoid in the valve body, its operating voltage, or the frequency of its control signal from the computer. This will require a digital multimeter (DMM) that can read voltage, resistance

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and frequency or dwell. You’ll also need the applicable service information that includes wiring schematics and OEM diagnostic charts with test specifications for all components that need to be checked. This kind of information can be found in OEM service manuals, on OEM websites (daily one-time access fees are typically $15 to $25), or through online technical information service providers. You should also check for any TSBs that may be related to the transmission problem. In some cases, it may be necessary to reflash (reprogram) the PCM or transmission module to cure a particular fault.

DIAGNOSTIC STRATEGIES When using a scan tool to diagnose a drivetrain problem, often what is not displayed will lead you to your final diagnosis. If a PCM or TCM can’t see inputs like engine speed, load or throttle position, it will assume the worst and put the transmission into a safe or limp mode. The transmission does not have discreet sensors connected to the throttle body, crankshaft or intake manifold. Instead, the transmission shares information with the engine control and other modules in the vehicle using a serial data bus. Most vehicles manufactured after 2004 put the TCM or PCM module on the high-speed, two-wire CAN network along with the BCM and ABS modules. The topology for these networks is typically a loop. If a module is not operating, the existing modules can still communicate on the bus. When using your scan tool to solve a transmission problem, you may have to look at the PIDs or Datastream from the ECM or BCM to see what modules are “talking” on the bus. If you can’t communicate with a transmission control module using your scan tool, look for transmission information in the connected modules. The BCM will monitor information from the TCM regarding gear position so it can tell the instrument cluster which gear to display for the driver. It can work the other way, too. If a TCM is not able to communicate with the ECM, looking at the transmissionrelated PIDs for calculated engine load, throttle position and manifold air pressure may show that the ECM is not communicating on the network or has other issues. IC


February 2014 |

THINKING OUTSIDE THE CASE Three Items That Can Cause Transmission Complaints Non-Transmission Sensors Causing Transmission Problems. Most transmission control modules use inputs from other sensors on the vehicle. If a vehicle can’t accurately calculate the load on the engine, it will adjust the line pressure and slippage to the inaccurate calculation, which can damage the transmission. Sensors used to calculate the load could include the Mass Airflow Sensor (MAF), Throttle Position Sensor (TPS) and Manifold Air Pressure (MAP). If unmetered air is entering the cylinder through a leak, the engine load will be below the actual percentage. This can cause the module to use different shift points and line pressures, which could then cause the transmission to delay shifts, overheat and possibly burn the fluid. Maintenance-related items like a restricted air filter, dirty airflow meter or blocked crankcase ventilation system can change the calculated engine load to the point were it can influence shift points and shift quality.

Wiring Harness Problems. The wiring harness and connectors on most transmissions operate in a unique environment. Normal automatic transmission fluid conductivity is very low. Hybrids usually have a specification for a fluid that is non-conductive. In most cases, the fluid will not damage or short the connections, but the detergents and chemicals will cause degradation of the materials in the wiring harness that might be outside of the case. Also, check for any damaged wires and connections that could have been damaged by impact with road debris, weak or shifting motor mounts and hot exhaust systems. Grounds. Since the mid-1990s, the grounds for solenoids and sensors have changed dramatically. Never assume the chassis ground is coming through the case or valve body. Study the wiring diagrams before trying to diagnosis a dead or open solenoid. Some transmissions can have multiple ground points for the solenoids, module and sensors.

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INDIRECT TPMS By Larry Carley, Technical Editor

Indirect Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems Making A Comeback On Some Imports


ndirect Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS) are the systems that do not have air pressure sensors inside the tires. Rather, they detect a low tire by comparing relative wheel speeds via the Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) wheel speed sensors. When a tire loses air, its diameter decreases slightly. Older indirect TPMS are not as sensitive to changes in tire pressure as direct systems that actually monitor the air pressure inside the tire, but they are not as expensive either. An indirect TPMS is a relatively affordable add-on to a vehicle if it’s already equipped with ABS. Even so, the vast majority of vehicles that have TPMS use direct systems rather than indirect. Federal law requires the TPMS to alert the driver if the pressure inside a tire has dropped more than 25% below the recommended inflation pressure. The same rules apply to direct and indirect TPMS. Many vehicles abandoned indirect systems for direct systems to meet the federal mandate. One of the weaknesses of older indirect systems is that they may not turn on the warning light if all the tires are underinflated by a similar amount. If the recommended pressure is 32 psi, but all the tires are 24 psi (down 25%), the system won’t know there’s a problem because all the tires will be rotating at the same speed when the vehicle is being driven. New systems are taking advantage of better wheel speed sensors and modules to make indirect systems work. Indirect TPMS began making a comeback in 2011 on all Audi models. The highly popular Honda Accord switched to indirect TPMS for the 2013 model year. The 2013 Mazda CX-5 is now also using an indirect TPMS. Some of the VW Golf platform vehicles have switched to an


February 2014 |

indirect TPMS. Most of these models have the optional ABS and stability control system. But even the newer systems suffer from the inability to read the tire pressure when the vehicle is sitting still. Indirect TPMS applications include: • Audi 2011-’14 • BMW X5 2002-‘05 • Honda Accord 2013-’14 • Lexus LS430 2004-‘06 • Lexus RX330 2004-‘06 • Mazda CX-5 2013-’14 • Mercedes C-Class 2007 • Mercedes SLK 2005-‘07 • MINI Cooper 2004-‘07 • Toyota Corolla 2005-‘07 • Toyota Matrix 2005-‘06 • Toyota Solara 2004-’06 • Toyota Highlander 2004-‘06 • Toyota RAV4 2004-‘05 • Volkswagen GTI 2007 and 2010 • Volkswagen Jetta 2005-‘07

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All of these applications use a similar technology and strategy to detect a low tire, but there is no common reset procedure. Toyota is probably the best, with only one simple reset procedure for all of its indirect TPMS (though a slightly different procedure is used on the Lexus models). With so many different reset procedures, it’s important to make sure you’re using the right procedure for the vehicle you’re servicing. TPMS reset procedures may also be found in the vehicle owner’s manual (if it hasn’t been lost). Open the glove box and check the index in the owner’s manual for any TPMS information.

As a rule, most indirect TPMS have a RESET button for recalibrating the system. A reset is typically required after adding air to a low tire, after changing or servicing a tire, or after rotating the tires on a vehicle.

AUDI RESET PROCEDURES 1. Find the factory tire pressure specifications on the vehicle placard located on the doorsill on the driver’s side. 2. Identify the tire that’s low on pressure and fill it up according to factory specifications. 3. Put the key in the ignition and start the car, but don’t turn on the engine. 4. Push the “Car” button located on the vehicle control panel. 5. A menu will pop up on the screen, then scroll down and select “tire pressure monitoring.” 6. Select “Store Curr. Tire Pressure.” 7. The screen will then read, “tire pressures are being stored.” 8. The tire pressure light should now be reset.


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February 2014 |

On Toyota applications, the reset procedure is fairly straightforward, though it actually takes much longer to complete. Turn the key on (engine off), then press and hold the RESET button until the flashing TPMS warning light goes off. Or, if it’s not flashing, hold the RESET button until the light flashes three times. Then, turn the key off. Hold on, though: The relearn procedure is not complete until the vehicle is driven at 19 mph or faster for at least an hour. You don’t have to do this, obviously, but your customer should be made aware of the fact that the TPMS reset procedure won’t be complete until the car has been driven awhile. During this time, the TPMS system may not be able to detect a low tire, so make sure all the tires have been inflated to the correct pressure before the vehicle leaves your shop. IC

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NissanFeature] By Bob Dowie, Contributing Writer

Driveability Diagnostics: Check Engine Light & Misfire Issues


he late-model Nissans have proven to be quite reliable when it comes to serial-type problems that would get them to your bay with check engine lamp issues. Nissan has done a good job of addressing some of the problems we’ve looked at in the past. But that doesn’t mean you won’t be seeing Nissans looking for attention, and that spells service opportunities for you. So, let’s take a look at some of the common driveability and check engine light issues on the Nissan vehicle lineup. One of the more common problems we see on the late-model Nissans involves the keyless start system. We’ve been faced with a couple of nocrank issues that were related to bad brake pedal switches, but don’t be fooled by simply looking at the brake lights and assuming the switch is good. These cars are equipped with a secondary switch that the keyless start system is monitoring.

when that code is evident. We found that the cam sensors weren’t a problem on the older cars. The crank sensor is located on the firewall side of the engine and, while not easy to reach, presents a bit of a challenge when installing. There is one important thing to keep in mind: Be sure to plug the harness onto the sensor before installation because it can’t be done afterward without modifying the connector. Also, as with any code issue, keep in mind that the code is not part-specific, so be sure to look at the connector and wiring while you’re there. Crank sensor issues have resulted in intermittent stalling, no-starts and long-crank

CAM AND CRANK SENSORS A common problem you’ll see on the ever-popular Altima is a P0335 code that represents a problem in the crankshaft position sensor circuit and is sometimes accompanied with a P0755 engine speed code. Nissan identified the problem early on, issuing a TSB that involved replacing both the cam and crank sensor. We were changing both sensors whenever the code was encountered, but we’ve since changed our strategy to replacing only the crank sensor


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[ NissanFeature complaints. If you’re faced with any of these complaints, and a P0335 code is stored, the sensor should be replaced. While the majority of these complaints end up being sensor issues, remember that these sensors are also looking at the relationship between the crank and cam position. There have been some reports of loose timing chains and faulty variable timing camshaft sprockets prompting this code. These issues are more prevalent in high-mileage cars, or if there is any noise from the timing chain area. Another giveaway is when a vehicle has had both sensors changed and the problem persists. Another area that seems more prone to problems on the Altima is the electronically controlled throttle body and the resulting P0507 code. After years of including a good throttle body cleaning in a service, we’re now very careful not to flood the unit with cleaner. Instead, we spray the cleaner on a shop rag and then carefully clean the throttle plate and bore. If you should end up with a high or erratic idle when you’re done, a throttle relearn will have to be performed. Your service info or scanner will walk you through the process — which can be quite tedious.



OBD II Misfire and Diagnosis When diagnosing misfires, it’s important to use tools that allow you to go beyond a simple code reader that displays a P03XX. Even an OEM-level scan tool can’t tell you what the firing voltage is or what the ignition pattern looks like. Nor can it tell you if the serial data is accurate or correct. For that kind of information you need a DVOM or a graphing multimeter/oscilloscope that can look at sensor voltages directly and display primary and secondary ignition patterns. If the vehicle has a distributorless (DIS) or coilover-plug (COP) ignition system, you’ll also need the appropriate inductive pickups to get a good ignition pattern signal from the coils. Mode $06 data via a scan tool is also helpful on some vehicles for determining which cylinders are misfiring, as well as the severity of any misfires.

Misfire causes can be categorized into four possible areas:

chain/valve timing - Head gasket failure - Worn rings, piston mechanical damage • Air/Fuel System - Low fuel level/poor fuel quality - False air/vacuum leaks - Clogged fuel filter - Low fuel pressure/volume - Open or shorted injector coil - Damaged injector driver - Injector ground/power supply circuit problems - Clogged injectors - Stuck (open) EGR valve - Low system voltage • False Misfires - Rough road - Heavy acceleration when cold - Loose motor or transmission mounts - Transmission/torque converter mechanical faults ~Courtesy Delphi Product & Service Solutions

• Ignition System - Fouled/worn spark plugs - Shorts, leaks or open circuits in secondary ignition wiring/components - Defective ignition coil(s) (COP or DIS) - Intermittent ignition module/coil driver - Low system voltage This scope pattern of a normal secondary ignition

I learned a tip, regarding mass airflow codes, to keep the engine running while your scanner is hooked up. I’ve followed this tip


February 2014 |

event indicates the condition of the spark plug, plug • Mechanical wire, ignition coil, air/fuel mixture and even the - Carbon deposits amount of air turbulence in the cylinder. - Worn valve train/burnt valves - Loose timing belt or

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with good results, even though I doubted it at first. With the engine idling, unplug the air mass meter and plug it back in, then clear the mass air code (with the engine still running) and see if the idle doesn’t return to normal. I don’t have the technical explanation for why it works, but it has gotten me out of jams when I otherwise couldn’t get the relearn done. Another problem that’s most prevalent on the V6 cars are ignition coil failures. If you’re lucky, you’ll get a solid misfire and code but, more often than not, you’ll be faced with a P1320 “Ignition Control Signal Circuit Malfunction” code that isn’t cylinder specific but indicates a coil failure. At this point, you and the customer have a decision to make. Many times, the customer doesn’t have a driveability complaint and it can be a “hard sell” to replace six coils. Often, our customers choose to continue to drive the car until the cylinder in question throws a misfire code, rather than replace all six coils as recommended by Nissan. On the four-cylinder Altima, you may find a misfire code that may or may not be accompanied with a system lean code. These cars may not exhibit a solid miss but may have a poor idle quality. Be sure to look at the long-term fuel trim as part of the diagnostic process. If you’re seeing numbers in the double digits, take the time to check for vacuum leaks, especially at the intake gasket feeding the misfiring cylinder in particular. While not a very common issue, we’ve seen more than a few intake gaskets failing. The diagnosis can be a bit of a challenge because it’s a hard area to reach, but it is worth the effort to prevent chasing your tale. The same applies to head gasket failures on the Sentra; many times a mysterious misfire code may start making more sense as you notice that the coolant level is low or you pick up that slight “miss” when you start the car cold. We’ve covered


February 2014 |

head gasket diagnosis and replacement in the past, and it’s available on the ImportCar website, Most importantly, don’t forget the basics. No amount of electronics or computer control can make an engine run well when it’s not in sound mechanical condition or if basic maintenance has been neglected. Our first step when looking at a cylinder that sets a misfire code is to pull the plug and test compression, confirming engine condition and getting an idea on where we stand with maintenance. If the engine is sound, we diagnose and repair the misfire and then contact the customer, pointing out the need for service. We never hesitate to point out and recommend additional services, but never do so without first addressing the customer’s initial complaint. It’s obvious that technology is moving forward and we have to be equipped to handle whatever comes our way. That means we have to consider making the investment in the proper equipment, plus we have to be in a position to handle this type of work. With solid parts availability and a wealth of information just a couple of mouse clicks away on web-based resources, like, iATN and other technician community forums, there is no reason not to capitalize on the service opportunities presented by this popular vehicle lineup. IC Bob Dowie has been in the automotive service business for 43 years, and his shop, Village Auto Works in Chester, NY, specializes in Honda, Toyota, Mazda and Nissan repair. Dowie owns and runs a Honda Civic and Nissan Sentra SER in SCCA GT Lite Class racing, and gets his technicians involved in various aspects of the sport.

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Models: Corolla, Matrix Years: 2003-‘08 Some customers may experience a front brake rattle type of noise when the car is traveling over bumps. Updated front disc brake cylinder (caliper) mountings and disc brake pad support plates are available to eliminate this condition. Repair Procedure: 1. Conduct a road test to verify the noise condition. Front brake rattle noise will occur when the front tire runs over a depression in the road.

2. Remove and replace the front disc brake pad support plates (two per each caliper). Note: The procedures listed below are for one side and should be used for both the right and left side. Refer to Fig. 1 for full diagram of front disc brake components. a. Remove the front wheel. b. Remove the caliper by holding the front disc brake slide pin and removing the two bolts. c. Remove the two front brake pads from the front disc brake cylinder mounting. d. Remove the anti-squeal shims and the pad wear indicator plates from each pad. e. Remove the two front disc

Fig. 1: Front Disc Brake Components

1. Front Disc Brake Cylinder Slide Pin 2. Front Disc Brake Cylinder Mounting LH 3. Bush Dust Boot 4. Anti-Squeal Shim No. 2 5. Anti-Squeal Shim No. 1 Go to


February 2014 |

6. Disc Brake Pad 7. Pad Wear Indicator Plate 8. Front Disc Brake Pad Support Plate No. 1 9. Front Disc Brake Pad Support Plate No. 2

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[ ImportTechTips Fig. 2: Front Disc Brake Grease Application

Squeak” to “Front Brake Rattle Noise.” Parts Information: OP Code: 473301 | Front Disc Brake Pad and/or Disc Brake Pad Shim | OFP: 47721-02140 Courtesy of ALLDATA.

1. Area For Disc Brake Grease Application 2. Also Apply Disc Brake Grease Here (1-2 mm [0.04-0.08 in.])

brake pad support plates from the cylinder mounting. f. Remove the front disc brake cylinder mounting by removing the two bolts. g. Install the new disc brake cylinder mounting with the two bolts. Torque: 107 N.m (1089, 79 ft.-lb). h. Install the 2 new disc brake pad support plates. Apply disc brake grease to the back of the brake pad support plate. i. Install the front anti-squeal shims. Apply disc brake grease to the anti-squeal shims. Notes regarding the antisqueal shims: • When replacing worn pads, the anti-squeal shims must be replaced along with the pads. • Make sure to install the shims in the correct positions and directions. • Apply a thin layer of disc brake grease to the area that contacts the anti-squeal shim. • Disc brake grease can come out slightly from the area where the anti-squeal shim is installed. Be sure to wipe off


February 2014 |

any excessive grease to avoid pad contamination. Make sure that disc brake grease is not applied onto the lining surface. j. Install the anti-squeal shims and the pad wear indicators to each pad. Make sure to install the pad wear indicators in the correct positions and directions. k. Install the two front brake pads with anti-squeal shims to the disc brake cylinder mounting. Apply a small amount of the disc brake grease (1 to 2 mm [0.04 - 0.08 in.] thick) to the areas shown in Fig. 2. Note: Do not apply grease to the friction surfaces of the brake pads or the disc rotor. l. Install the caliper with the 2 bolts. Torque: 34 N.m (350, 25 ft.-lb) m. Install the front wheel. Torque: 103 N.m (1050, 76 ft.-lb) 3. Road-test the vehicle to confirm the front brake rattle noise is no longer present. This information supersedes TSB No. BROO4-07 and was originally titled “Front Brake


Some things to consider before unnecessarily replacing hydraulic components when diagnosing a customer report that the clutch pedal won’t return to its position. - Does it occur when moving or stationary? - Does it happen when the vehicle is turning? - Are the engine/transmission locating dowel pins in place? - Are the engine/transmission supports aligned and secure? - Is there anything under the dash interfering with the pedal assembly? - Does the ambient temperature have any influence on when it occurs? - Is there any complaint of noise when it occurs? - Most important of all, can you duplicate the complaint? Courtesy of MotoLOGIC® Repair & Diagnostics: IC

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XADO Gel-Revitalizant EX 120 for Automatic Transmissions rebuilds, repairs and protects automobile transmission metal. EX 120 coats surfaces with a layer of ceramic-metal thus, rebuilding and protecting transmissions with diamond-like film that results in smoother operation, longer life and reduced noise and vibration. It works in all types of automatic transmissions including Tiptronic, Steptronic, CVT, etc. For more information visit Reader Service: Go to

Delphi Product & Service Solutions announced 12 new ignition coils to its engine management portfolio covering almost 7 million Nissan, Hyundai, Toyota and Volkswagen applications from 1986 to 2012. Delphi uses a winding process technique to control the length of wire between adjacent windings. More length results in greater voltage differences, which can create more pressure that could break down the insulation and wire coating. Reader Service: Go to Federal-Mogul’s MOOG Steering and Suspension brand has introduced 43 new replacement parts that address the service requirements of millions of late-model foreign-nameplate and domestic passenger vehicles. The MOOG brand offers innovative technologies that improve on original component designs for longer life, superior performance and faster, easier installation. The new parts include 12 patent-pending MOOG Problem Solver control arm bushings that eliminate stress-induced failures encountered with the original equipment-style design used on more than 25.5 million passenger vehicles. Available for models from Honda and Mazda. Reader Service: Go to



ACDelco has released an additional 143 Professional remanufactured alternator and starter part numbers covering 19922012 models from Toyota, Honda, Nissan and other manufacturers. The expansion consists of 64 additional Professional remanufactured alternators and 79 Professional remanufactured starters. On ACDelco part numbers with an “A” suffix, the alternators always include new regulators and the starters always include new solenoids. In total, the ACDelco Professional remanufactured alternator and starter line now features more than 2,500 SKUs. Visit for more information.


The PlatinumNAPAFilter offers technology for the latest advancements in synthetic oil and performance oil filters. Featuring a host of oil filter innovations, including wire re-enforced fully-synthetic media and an ultra-durable Hydrogenerated Nitrile compound anti-drain back valve (where applicable), this oil filter provides the ultimate protection in the NAPA Family of oil filters. Visit for more information. Reader Service: Go to


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Standard Motor Products, Inc. released a new TechSmart Tech Session video featuring TechSmart import solutions. Highlighting the Tech Sessions are TechSmart’s all-new, not remanufactured, electronic throttle bodies for Nissan and Infiniti, and TechSmart VVT chain tensioner kits for VW and Audi. These VVT kits include every necessary component to get the job done right. Also featured are power distribution centers for VW and Audi, an ignition coil harness repair kit, expansion tank service kits for BMW and more. Reader Service: Go to

CRP Automotive, a source of OE-quality replacement parts for Asian and European vehicles, offers coverage on Asian and European applications with its AJUSA Cylinder Head Bolt Kit program. The program features an OEquality line of torque-to-yield (TTY) head bolts that come packaged as sets to meet vehicle specific applications. The sets are provided in a shrinkwrapped cardboard box with assembly lube included. Reader Service: Go to



Schaeffler Group USA Inc. released an expanded 2014 LuK Diagnostic Guide, which is a complete guide to clutch operation and failure diagnosis. LuK has built upon its strategy for continuous improvement with the latest edition of the diagnostic guide featuring updated and expanded technical and diagnostic materials, including: Diagnostics of the top causes of clutch failure, detailed teardown and installation procedures, clutch function and components, installation and technical tips, and detailed failure and diagnostic illustrations. Reader Service: Go to


Tenneco’s 2013-’14 Monroe Brakes catalog highlights the continued expansion of the brand’s Total Solution line of ultra-premium brake pads, with coverage now reaching 97 percent of foreign nameplate applications. Monroe Total Solution pads are delivered complete with electronic wire wear sensors, noise elimination hardware, sensory locking plate (SLP) backing plates and many other ultra-premium features designed to help service providers complete more high-quality brake repairs every day. Reader Service: Go to


February 2014 |

FRAM introduced the FRAM Pro Series product line, a set of specially designed oil filters that align oil filter selection with the specific oil used most frequently by installers during oil changes. FRAM Pro Synthetic is engineered for synthetic oil with long-life protection up to 15,000 miles. FRAM Pro Plus is designed as a trade-up filter aligned with synthetic blend and premium convention oils for extended change intervals up to 10,000 miles. FRAM Pro is engineered for vehicles that use conventional oil with more regular change intervals of 3,000 to 5,000 miles. Reader Service: Go to

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47 rapid response IC_Feb_Layout 1 2/11/14 3:03 PM Page 47

It’s Fast, Easy and Accurate! Get FREE PRODUCT AND SERVICE INFO from the companies featured in this issue of ImportCar. >> VISIT and click on the company from which you want information. >> OR, go to and click on the ImportCar Rapid Response Logo.



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February 2014 |

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52 February 2014 NASCAR_IC_Layout 1 2/12/14 9:59 AM Page 52

Track Talk NASCAR Adopts Knockout Qualifying for 2014 Season So long single-car qualifying. In 2014, NASCAR is ramping up the prerace excitement level with a new knockout Coors Light Pole Award qualifying format for its three national series — a move designed to make qualifying more compelling and more closely like actual on-track competition. “We believe the timing is right for a new qualifying format across our three national series,” said Robin Pemberton,

vice president for competition and racing development. “This style of group qualifying has all the makings of being highly competitive and more engaging to our fans in the stands and those watching on television and online.” The new qualifying format will not apply to the first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points race of the season —the February 23 Daytona 500 — which features single-car runs and two qualifying races to set

the lineup for The Great American Race. Heat races to determine the lineup for the July 23 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Mudsummer Classic race at Eldora Speedway will still be used Overhaulin’ the Coors Light Pole Award qualias well. fying format, NASCAR says, underlines the At racetracks sport's on-going commitment to innovation. less than 1.25 miles, the Coors Light Pole draw and may exit pit road at Award new qualifying proceany time while the green flag dure will be as follows: is displayed. Each driver may The first qualifying complete as few or as many session will be 30 minlaps as he or she chooses utes long and include all during the allotted time pericars entered in the race. od for each segment. Pit road The 12 cars that post the speeds will be enforced fastest single lap time in during each session. this session will advance Drivers will be allotted to the second and final just a single set of tires durround. The remaining ing qualifying, which means cars will be sorted based fans will see a lot of different on their times posted in strategies. the first round of qualify“For the drivers and teams, ing in descending order. we believe this new qualifyThere will be a 10ing will fuel even greater minute break between the competition leading into the two qualifying rounds. events,” said Pemberton. The second and final “Additionally, it provides our qualifying round will last tracks, broadcasters and other 10 minutes, with the key partners with a greater fastest single lap time post- opportunity to develop more ed by each car setting the entertaining content for our top 12 spots on the grid. race weekends.” At racetracks longer NASCAR previewed the than 1.25 miles, there will concept of group qualifying be three Coors Light Pole with its national series teams Award qualifying rounds. late last fall and expects the Before the start of new format will be a wellqualifying, cars or trucks received improvement by its will be lined up on pit fans, competitors, tracks, sponroad based on a random sors and media partners.

Follow NASCAR Performance on Twitter and Facebook

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ImportCar, February 2014  

ImportCar provides direct reach into import specialist repair shops with targeted underhood and undercar ­technical features. Founded: 1979...