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The Electrical System in Your Auto

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How to Check Your Car Battery

A battery, like other parts of your vehicle, is subject to wear and tear and should be checked regularly. In particular, pay attention to the battery’s trouble spots, shown here. A battery that’s kept [more…]

How to Remove Hard-to-Reach Spark Plugs

When changing your spark plugs, you may have some difficulty loosening a spark plug for the first time. Grease, sludge, and other junk may have caused the plug to stick in place, especially if it’s been [more…]

How to Buy the Right Spark Plugs

To buy the proper spark plugs for your vehicle, you must know its specifications. Your owner’s manual may have specifications for buying and gapping the spark plugs on your vehicle. If you don’t have an [more…]

How to Gap Your Spark Plugs

The gap between the center and side electrodes of a spark plug must be an exact distance; otherwise, your plugs don’t fire efficiently. Adjusting the distance between the two electrodes is called [more…]

How to Install a Spark Plug

When you're changing your vehicle's spark plugs, work on one spark plug at a time: Remove it, inspect it, clean it, and — if it’s salvageable — gap it. Then replace it before you move on to the next spark [more…]

How to Find the Right Battery for Your Vehicle

If you’ve decided to replace your car's battery yourself, the first thing to do is to buy the right one. Unless your vehicle has a shield over the battery that’s difficult or dangerous to remove, it shouldn’t [more…]

How to Remove and Install a Car Battery

No matter how well your vehicle is working, if your battery dies and can’t be recharged, you’re stranded in a vehicle that you can’t drive in for service. A battery usually has a sticker on it that shows [more…]

How to Change a Vehicle's Fuses

If your stereo goes dead, your turn signals don’t blink, a light goes out, or some other gadget stops working, it’s often just the result of a blown fuse. You can change fuses yourself, easily and with [more…]

Replacing and Adjusting Halogen and Xenon Headlamps

Before attempting to replace or adjust your headlights, you need to know whether you have halogen or xenon headlamps or the old-style sealed-beam units. You can tell which type of headlights you have by [more…]

How to Replace Sealed-Beam Headlights

Older vehicles have sealed-beam units, which are relatively easy to deal with. If one of your headlights ceases to shine, first consult your owner’s manual to see whether it contains instructions for replacing [more…]

How to Assess Trouble by Checking Your Spark Plugs

You can actually read your spark plugs for valuable “clues” about how your engine is operating. If your plugs indicate that something is seriously wrong with your engine, ask a professional for an opinion [more…]

How to Remove Old Spark Plugs

The first step in changing your spark plugs is to remove the old ones. To avoid turning this job into an all-weekend project, remove one spark plug at a time, inspect it, clean it, and — if it’s salvageable [more…]

Wire Gauge Chart for Car Audio Systems

When wiring your car audio system, using the proper gauge wire for an amplifier is critical. To avoid problems and get the best sound, determine the fuse ratings of your amplifiers and their distance from [more…]

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