Niagara Gazette

Columns

August 8, 2013

TOM'S CORNER: Tips for increasing fuel mileage and other questions answered

Niagara Gazette — This week’s column features a few questions and answers:

DAN FROM PHOENIX: Other than keeping up on oil changes (I use Mobil 1 synthetic 5w-30) and keeping up on the air filter, is there any after market stuff I can buy to increase mileage? I know there’s aftermarket stuff that increases horsepower, but not mileage. I’m looking for good quality products that are a surefire way to make a noticeable difference in mileage. Please help!

TOM: Using synthetic motor oil is a good move. You might also want to change over the transmission fluid to synthetic ATF; this will help reduce internal transmission drag. Using synthetic transmission fluid is a move many carmakers use to increase fuel efficiency. Keep your tires inflated to the proper levels and replace the air filter with a K&N high-flow air filter. These combined moves should result in measurable fuel mileage increases.

•••

GLEN FROM MINNEAPOLIS, MINN.: I own a ‘68 AMC AMX with a 390 engine. It sat for 10 years without running. My question, is the engine ruined because it hasn’t run in so long? I didn’t store it properly and would like your advice on how I might be able to revive this classic car engine. Will it need professional care at this point?

TOM: Have you even tried to start it yet? Try to crank it over. If the engine cranks, that’s a good sign. Drain the crankcase and fill it with new oil. Next, replace the oil filter, and before you install the new filter, fill it with oil. Pull a valve cover. Next, ground the coil wire and crank the engine until the rockers pump oil up into the head. Make sure you have spark from the coil, then reinsert the coil wire and start the engine up. Should the engine NOT crank, find our why. There could be rust in the cylinders or a seized crankshaft. The only way to find the cause is to disassemble the engine. If it’s extremely rusty inside, find another engine. Good luck.

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