Niagara Gazette — •••
GENE FROM LUBBOCK, TEXAS: I own a 2003 Chevy S-10 pickup. The SERVICE ENGINE LIGHT is on and it is showing a P0128 code. What do I need to do?
TOM: This code is related to the coolant temperature sensor circuit. Typically, when you see this code, the sensor is bad. However, before replacing the sensor it is a good idea to confirm that it is indeed a bad sensor. You can do this with a few pinpoint tests measuring voltage values. What happens when this sensor goes bad is that it incorrectly senses coolant temperature and thus sends incorrect data to the ECM (Engine Control Module). The ECM then commands the fuel delivery system to either richen or lean-out the fuel mixture according to what the temp sensor read. This response can result in dramatically decreased fuel economy or diminished power.
JOYCE FROM LANSDALE, PA.: My ‘05 Subaru Forester shifts into gear with a jolt bad enough for my daughter to think we had been hit from behind. This only happens when it is 40 degrees or colder and only for the first couple of miles. What might be causing this problem?
TOM: Subaru issued a TSB (Technical Service Bulletin) for this very condition. It is TSB NUMBER16-69-07. Apparently there is a drivetrain control module software update that solves the problem. Call your local Subaru dealer with your VIN (Vehicle ID Number) and this information. They should be able to solve your harsh shift problem at no charge.
JOHN FROM BURLINGTON, VT.: I am looking at a 2007 Suburban with really high mileage. However, the car is out of state. It appears to be in very good condition (paint, seats, interior, etc), but I’m not so sure of the mechanics. Can you offer any advice? Do you have anyone I could discuss this with over the phone?