Your Nook Wrench: Keep away from these do-it-yourself restore gadgets

Everyone tries to make things permanent, wrestling every last penny of value from their holdings. However, be aware that some remedies are worse than the disease when it comes to fixing various types of vehicle malfunction.

Be careful with these over-the-counter repair items whether you noticed it at the store, your buddy recommended it, or you saw someone use it on YouTube.

Cooler Stop Leak Treatments

These can do more than stop leaks. This panacea for coolant leaks can be useful for older engine cooling systems – think pre-1980s – when used as directed in the package. It is intended for hole-sized radiator leaks. With newer engine designs and their coolant ducts with increasingly smaller diameters, however, there is a risk that an important coolant path will be blocked. This can overheat the engine or add or cause more and larger leaks.

Liquid metal welding paste or gel

Among other things, this should not be used for components. The most popular brand of this type of miracle bond is JB Weld. It truly has a thousand uses but should never be used to repair damage to structural things like wishbones or subframes. Also, it doesn’t help much to repair damage involving a threaded hole that will accept a screw, such as a screwdriver. B. Cylinder head spark plug holes.

Thread repair kits

These are practical, but don’t bet your life on them. Nothing frustrates a home tech more than pushing out a gripped bolt, only to eventually thread it out of the attached hole. Now, if it’s a spark plug hole and you’re installing that last set of spark plugs from the engine until you scrap the car, a thread repair kit is certainly better than replacing a cylinder head.

However, if you want to replace these plugs several more times, a thread repair kit is not guaranteed to make your life easier. Never use them to hold critical components such as brake calipers or ball joints. or any joint that is routinely exposed to heavy loads; or for a bolt or plug that needs to be removed frequently, such as B. an oil pan drain plug.

Do-it-yourself kits for charging AC power and stopping leaks

We’ve covered this before, but because of the potential problems these kits can cause, it’s worth repeating. First, the refrigerant gas that most of these kits use is a butane derivative, and that’s as flammable as it sounds. It is never a good idea to load flammable gas into a system where one component, the condenser, is in the most collision-prone area of ​​your vehicle. Second, the sealant included in the kit can stick and destroy perfectly good valves in the system.

However, the worst cost these items can cost is when the air conditioner is still not working and you take it to a professional store for repair. Part of normal diagnosis is to evacuate all of the remaining refrigerant gas and test the system for leaks using equipment to maintain a vacuum in the vehicle system. Any patch seal in the system will contaminate store equipment and potentially render it inoperable. If you think the cost of repairing your car’s air conditioner is expensive, wait to get a store’s charging station repair estimate. Ouch!