Mr. E   -  Automotive Projects

Do your own maintenance and save a bundle

      AUTOMOTIVE TIPS - MR. E can help


Basic tools and time is all that is needed to do your own maintenance.

AVG AUTO maintenance cost per mile is 1 to 2 cents.

A synthetic blend change can cost as much as 35$

A full synthetic blend oil change as much as 50$ and up

   - you can do your own, 1 hour and 25$. Like paying you 25$ and hour.


about Mr E. At 15 doing the family oil changes. At 16 rebuilding a GM 307, brakes and maintenance. Rebuilding Holly 4 barrel carb. Body work, things sure rusted a lot back then. I have worked on many makes and models. Favorite learning car GM Pontiac 1990 Lemans (Deawoo) it was a work on every weekend car. I learned A/C rebuild repair. Still made it past 180k miles.


The KIA Sephia 2000  F4A-EL (F4EAT) automatic transmission. Built and designed by FORD/MAZDA, it is used in many Fords, Mazdas, KIA, etc.

Learn basic transmission diagnostics like stall speed test. Reading OBD II codes.

KIA SPECTRA 2006 : Beta II engine G4GC -  Timing Belt, Idler , Tensioner, Water pump replace, Cylinder head


Honda Accord 2002 : Fluid changes at 6 yr 60K miles.

Oil, Filter, transmission fluid, Power Steering, Cooling and the check out required by 60K service chart.


Buick Century 1999: Fixing the known bugs, Dash odometer out, cooling level sensor.


Buying a used car, tips : How to check fluids, OBD II code reading, What a MD state inspection covers. What does Certified mean? How to research. Recalls. TSB notes



The good news:

Additives in oil and gasoline do an awesome job of keeping things clean inside the engine. I have been inside an engine and seen piston along with valve deposits being minor with engines at 100k miles. Less defects and longer warranties take care of the big ticket items.

 The bad news:

Some personalities stand out over time. This means issues or defects. A certain coolant if not replaced as per manual degrades the intake manifold gasket and it could lead to a substantial outlay. Reputation of transmission should be a factor, some are known to have defects and need re build at 110k miles. My mom's Buick Century 1999 has a few interesting issues; Fuel gauge, right front turn signal, dash odometer out, cooling level sensor and the leak / dex cool intake gasket. If the issue is bad enough then it becomes a TSB Technical Service Bulletin or Recall.

 Auto Maintenance will average 1 to 2 cents per mile driven.

 What an auto needs in summary using dealer average pricing:

Min maintenance is for oil changes up to 30 k every 5 k min (avg) (140$)

Then 3 yr/ 30 K maintenance   ($370)

Back on the oil changes up to 60 k every 5 k min (avg) (140$)

Then 6 yr/ 60 K maintenance ($370)

Most likely brakes ($500)   &   Tune Up ($50)

Check auto for need of timing belt service / Accessory Belt any where between 500$ and 1000$ depending on application.


My last visit for 60k tires the shop came back with the following prices:


$105 for Antifreeze Flush

$120 for Power Steering flush

$109 for Intake fuel system clean

$51 for air cleaner filter


I did it for:

$10 Antifreeze Flush

$ 10 Power Steering Flush

$ 10 Fuel system clean

$ 10 for air cleaner

1 hr labor


Saved $273 - 30$ = $243.00


Automotive Training and Resource Site (toyota manuals & training)

KIA Technical Site (TSB, OBD, Repair etc.)

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