Niagara Gazette

Features

June 20, 2013

TOM'S CORNER: Secret letters that can save you money: TSB

(Continued)

Niagara Gazette — Putting a tsb to good use

This information is useful in vehicle repair because the carmaker has already done the research and found the cause of the problem and how to fix it. So if you own a vehicle with a recurring problem, a TSB search may help you identify the possible causes.

For instance, years ago, I owned a 1991 Chevy Lumina Eurosport that had a bad habit of eating rear brake pads. I had gone through two sets on the car in just 12,000 miles. When the third set of pads went south, I did a TSB search. I found out that the pins that the pads ride on were going bad from exposure to the elements because of bad pin seals. In addition, the caliper slides were also corroding, which stopped the calipers from sliding back and forth smoothly, such that they would seize in the applied position whenever the brakes were applied. The TSB fix told me to use the emergency brake to keep the calipers free and moving and routinely keep the pins and caliper slides lubricated. I followed the procedure outlined and the rear pads lasted 40,000 miles.

Another time I owned a Dodge Neon, it kept blowing cylinder head gaskets. I had the gasket replaced two times and both blew within 100 miles of installation. I got very frustrated, then I took my own advice and did a TSB search on cylinder head gaskets for this car. It turned up a TSB from Chrysler Corp, seems they came up with a special kit that stopped cylinder head leaks on these vehicles. It included a laminated head gasket & gasket sealer, special thread lock/sealer for head bolts and a new set of cylinder head bolts. A special procedure was lied out step by step and a special head torque sequence topped the procedure. This procedure solved the cylinder head coolant leak problem.

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