Monthly Archives: October 2010

The Haynes Used Car Buying Guide

Gap in the window molding, then trickles down the pillar where it sits until it eats its way through. Because windshield moldings invariably leak at the gap in their molding, the A-pillars (the front pillars) are particularly susceptible to this type of rust damage. This type of damage is so expensive to repair that it may cost more to fix than the vehicle is worth.

Lift up the floor mats or carpeting inside the vehicle. Do they smell moldy? Are there signs of water damage or rust stains. Is there standing water underneath the mats of carpeting? If the water smells like antifreeze, the heater core may be leaking. Water from outside gets into the car’s interior through holes in the firewall. There are holes for the brake and clutch pedal linkage rods, the accelerator cable, the shift cables, the heater core hoses, the air conditioning evaporator lines and the large wiring harnesses that connect the engine compartment to the wiring under the dash. These holes are usually insulated by rubber grommets which crack and dry out with age and sometimes fall out. Or they’re incorrectly installed upon completion of some service procedure. A wet and/or rusted floor can also occur if the vehicle has been flooded. In the case of flooding, look for the high-water mark on the trim panels. If it’s halfway up the door trim panels, chances are the damage is more extensive, and more serious, than mere rust. The engine management computer, power window motors, power seat motors, shift lock systems and other electrical devices and systems are often located on the floor, in the console or in the kick panels in front of the front doors. If you find evidence of water damage from flooding, you’ll need to inspect these devices, or have them checked out by your mechanic, before giving the car a clean bill of health. But the bottom line here is this: If you see any place(s) where the metal is rusted completely through the floor, take this into consideration before making your final decision to buy this car.

Look inside the trunk. Look for standing water or rust stains underneath the mats or carpets. They’re often the result of a rear-ender that was never repaired properly or flood damage.

Tip: Rust is often repaired by replacing body panels or installing “patch” panels, i.e. partial panels that are welded into place. If you find evidence of panel replacement, make sure your search for rust is extra thorough and includes floor panels and frame.


2010 Fort Mc Murray Mazda 3 Mazda Trucks

One Hour Heating  CBC Winnipeg


The Walk-Around Inspection

The “A-pillar” (the pillar between the windshield and the front door) can become rusted out when water gets past the windshield molding, seeps along the molding to the pillar, then drips down into the pillar, where it sits until it eats it way to daylight – this damage is very expensive to repair.

When you find rust in the vicinity of the B-pillar (the pillar between the front door and the rear quarter panel, or between the front and rear doors) and both doors, as shown, the rust has spread everywhere.

Rainwater in the roof rain gutters has eaten into this roof and the C-pillar (the pillar between the side window and the rear window, or between the rear door and the side window or rear window)

Water seeps past the window seals and trickles down into the door voids, where it sits silently until it eats its way out the bottom of the door. Depending on the overall value of the vehicle, this type of damage might be affordable to repair, if you’re willing to track down a door from a salvaged vehicle and simply swap doors. Otherwise, forget it. Repairing a door is expensive.

Look for rust damage around the wheel wells. Water that gets into the body sometimes finds it way into voids in front of, above and below the wheel wells. There is no way for water to drain from these voids or evaporate, so it sits.

Look for rust spots around the front windshield, the side windows, and the rear window, usually along the bottom edges. As the window/windshield molding ages, it dries out and cracks. Water enters gaps between the window and molding, or simply goes right through cracks in the molding. Either way, the result is the same. The recess between the molding and the body rusts out. Once the rust appears on the exterior surface, the damage is done, and is very expensive to repair, since the rotted metal must be cut out and new metal welded in, which can only be done after the windshield or other adjoining glass is removed.

Look for signs of rust on the “pillars” (the vertical stanchions that support the roof in front of, between and behind the doors). The bottoms of the pillars are a favorite breeding ground for rust.

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CBC series questions sales tactics of ‘s One Hour Heating and Air Conditioning


Manitoba Car Clubs

We never think about Manitoba as being a Mecca for valuable antique and classic cars, but apparently others do. Take Bill Casey, lately MP for Colchester-Cumberland in Nova Scotia. Bill is a former Ford car dealer and a collector of venerable automobiles and he has sourced many of his finer specimens right here in the friendly province.

But it isn’t just vintage cars that excite the prairie psyche. There are no less than 60-plus car clubs in the province, representing everything from BMWs to Austin-Healys, from Studebakers to Corvettes, Porsches (apparently there are  over 400 of these expensive cars in the province), Thunderbirds, and even military vehicles. There are clubs representing hot rods, custom classics, trucks, P.T. Cruisers, Smart cars, and more.

The Canadian Classic Car Registry is headquartered here. Throughout the year, no less than seven Manitoba cities and towns, including Brandon, Gimli, Steinbach, Russell, Lac du Bonnet and Richer, plus Winnipeg, host close to 40 percent of the all the car events held across the country. Tomorrow many are going to consider applying for credit at a kiosk in the Waverly auto mall.

Joe Borges is one of the enthusiasts. “I started out building model cars, when I was just a kid,” he says. This ignited his interest. “I had a passion for a 4×4 trucks,” he notes and he has a stunning 1980 Dodge Convertible Ramcharger with a 550 HP engine. But lately, this has been expanded to include its late model “silver”, a Chrysler 300 SRT (2007).

“Maybe our interest has something to do with the long winters,” Joe muses. “When the weather gets nice. we like to take advantage of the summer hours to show off our work.” He explains that personalizing your vehicle is part of the joy and much of that work is done in the dark months.

His younger brother, Bobby, is just as addicted and has recently brought a 1969 Chrysler 300 from California off the internet. He also just bought Charger from Michigan. Internet purchasing has made the collectors very happy.

The car crowd is like an extended family. Whisper the words “Show and shine” and hundreds of cars come out to strut their stuff as happened at Tavern United on Regent one evening in May – 500 cars showed up on Sunday. The Pony Corral on St. Mary Avenue hosts classic cars every Wednesday and basically shuts down the street. Then there’s the Pony Corral on Grant, another big rallying spot for the younger guys (one of the Ginakis brothers is a car fanatic). It’s held every Sunday night until October. Even the Legion on Henderson Highway hosts its group of groupies. And there is a monster car show at Garden City Shopping Centre, which will show over 1,000 cars – the list goes on.

The Sunday Night Cruise is a big deal in Winnipeg, when hundreds of car buffs show up at 9 p.m. to cruise Portage Avenue. This weekly summer rite of passage has been around for about a decade and now there’s one in Brandon. Show and Shines occur in Richer and Steinbach and Gimli.

According to Joe Borges, it’s all about sharing your passion. He’s proud of the Winnipeg connection, too. “Paul Williamson, of the Free Press “Willy’s Garage” column even has a bid in to be on the Tonight Show,” he laughs. Hey, if Dick Assman from Saskatchewan can get on Letterman by virtue of his name,  why not?

Meanwhile, indulge your eyes with glimpses of Lamborghinis, Ferraris, Audis and the occasional classic beauty, not to mention the fabulous custom jobs around town. Or check out the “rides” at one of the Show and Shines around the province. There may be a car addict in you just waiting to be aroused. You may well have to apply for auto credit at the Waverley Auto Mall kiosk.

Luxury Sedans Under $50,000

  • This car isn’t just spacious, it’s very practical as well. There are sufficient, nicely located storage spots in the cabin, even though there are more up front than in the rear seat area. The trunk is nice and square and luggage handling is great with such a low door and besides, cargo space can be doubled by lowering the rear seat bench.

What We Disliked

  • This car is over-priced because it isn’t really a luxury car and even the XLS is still a Toyota and it’ll never be a Lexus.
  • Stylistics aren’t great and it’s about time that the Toyota car designers added a little spice to their blah, insipid, uninspiring products.
  • Steering lacks character definition and it can get vague and you need to keep a close eye on it in cross-winds. The wide steer angle radius definitely hampers maneuvers.
  • Noise is more palpably present that in other equivalent vehicles, especially road noise that’s an indicator of some serious flaws in the soundproofing.


The Avalon is geared to attract seasoned customers who are out to buy a plain and passionless mode of transportation, but who want a fast, comfy, reliable vehicle that’s nice and conventional and doesn’t cause any waves. Mission accomplished…

New for 1998

  • Cosmetic touches on the front and rear fascias.
  • More extensive equipment on the XLS that now includes fog headlamps, CD player, wood trim and coded ignition immobilizer anti-theft system.
  • The XL model has lost some feathers, since it’s no longer equipped with traction control, alloy rims or sunroof.

One Hour Heating  CBC Winnipeg


CBC series questions sales tactics of ‘s One Hour Heating and Air Conditioning

Volvo 70

Since early 1997, the 70 Series has included 4-door sedans and station wagons available in base and GLT versions, as well as a T5 all-wheel drive station wagon, equipped respectively with a 20-valve 168 hp 2.4L 5-cylinder engine or an 190 hp engine on the GLT and AWD station wagon or yet again a 240 hp turbocharged 2.3L on the T5 version.

What We Liked

  • There are some nice, neat curves that have sprouted on these models, but cars still have an unmistakable Volvo design that’s inspired confidence in regard to reliability and endurance for generations now. The coupe stylistics, and those of the convertible that’ll soon be available, has even more zest and it opens up new vistas for the Swedish automaker that seemed imprisoned in a straight-jacket as far as car design went…
  • The Turbo engine on T-5 and C70 is simply dazzling and provides for slick sports car moves and quick-on-the-draw acceleration and pickup. Putting such a muscular engine under the hood of a station wagon is a pretty bold move. The base engine is less exhilarating, but it’s far from boring, for even when linked to the automatic transmission, it provides for a zippy driving style, thanks to the dual-setting gearbox.
  • Brakes on these babies are the best of the creamy car lot, since emergency stopping distances are well below 40 meters, even with the high vehicle weight and the beefy anti-lock braking system.
  • Handling is super-safe, but the flexible suspension is more tuned to being like a sport-ute than a revvy sports car, since sway leads to extent varies with the model. The AWD is great in bound during much of the year, for it offers really top in such chilly and icy circumstances.
  • Cabin space accommodates five passengers and the trunk holds all of them.
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Chrysler Posts Quarterly Loss

Chrysler Group LLC reported a quarterly net loss Monday, underscoring the pressure on the smallest U.S. automaker from a slack economy and an aging product lineup.

The automaker, which plans an initial public offering next year, said U.S. sales grew 12% in the first half of the year, lagging the industry’s slower-than-expected growth of nearly 17%.

Chief executive Sergio Marchionne said Chrysler had an “extraordinary amount of work” remaining in its turnaround, but its restructuring was on track.

The automaker, which emerged from a U.S. government supported bankruptcy in June 2009 under the management control of Italy’s Fiat Spa, said it could raise its financial outlook later this year.

One Hour Heating  CBC Winnipeg

Car Carrier

Toyota Avalon

The Avalon is a close cousin to the Camry. It’s been built in the United States since 1995. This 4-door sedan is sold as a base XL or as a deluxe XLS and is powered by a 200 hp. 3.0L V6 driven by a 4-speed automatic.

What We Liked:

  • Engine performances are quite respectable for this type of car, accelerations and pickup offer a good safety margin with such an excellent energy reserve, so the driver can handle all kinds or situations with assurance. The transmission gears are well spaced and responsive and downshifting is super-smooth…
  • Roadability is pretty impressive for a vehicle that was designed to please comfort-loving North American customers. There’s a bit of sway, but the Avalon handles all kinds of curves with aplomb, so much so that you find yourself just gunning it to get the adrenaline going.
  • The interior is really quite spacious, considering vehicle size that’s just a bit bigger than the present Camry. Front and rear seat passengers have lots of head, hip and knee room, and access is a breeze with such good-sized doors that open nice and wide.
  • The braking system is efficient, stable and long-lasting. Brakes are easy to apply even though the pedal is a bit numb.
  • The ride is comfy because of the flexible suspension components, well upholstered seats that bolster the bones and soundproofing that would make some top-or-the-line models blush…
  • Build quality is superb, both fit and finish are meticulous and major trim materials are flawless, but the XL doesn’t really look too lavish with all those plastic parts.
  • The cockpit is nifty, the main controls, dials and shifters are straightforward, legible and within easy reach and outward view is good every which way.




Ford ’65 Ford Twin I Beam Pickups – Powerfully Smooth




Older Drivers

One of the most difficult transitions our aging parents are experiencing is the loss of their drivers license. Giving up the car means instant loss of independence because our communities are built for cars.

Individuals accustomed to doing their errands and visiting friends by car suddenly become dependent when they lose their license. They need a cab or help from friends to get a loaf of bread or go to the hair dresser. Of all age-related losses, many older people; mourn the loss of their drivers’ license the most.

But in parts of Europe older people are finding an option. In Holland, older people who give up their drivers’ license can apply for a license to drive a “brommobiel” This entitles them to drive a tiny car with a small motor that has a top speed of 45 kph on city streets.

Ten companies are producing brommobiels for the European market. These cars are somewhat smaller and far less powerful than Smart cars. They are restricted to a driver and a single passenger.

Elizabeth van Sloten, who lives in The Hague, says that when she gave up her car in 2007, she traded it in for a brommobiel. She says it feels just like an ordinary car, it has a sticker on the back stating “max 45″, but it works fine in the city, where the speed limit is 45 kph.

“I go everywhere in the city; run errands, go to shops, see the doctor, visit friends. I feel safe in it. There are highways and major roads where I cannot go, but in the city, I can go lots of places. My friends are scared to drive a car like this, but I am confident in this car. This is the way to get around the city.”

There have been reports of vandalism of the small Smart cars on this continent and in Europe, and questions raised about road safety. But Boomers should be aware the small, gentler car option exists and could keep them on the road well into their senior years. They could be talking seriously about how such a vehicle can be incorporated into our transportation mix in this country and offer safe if limited mobility.




Is there a time limit on buying Leased Car Protection?

Yes. For brand new leased vehicles, you have 60 days to buy Leased Car Protection from when you first register and insure the leased vehicle. For used vehicles, you have 60 days from when your lease starts.

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