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Sunshine Makes Console Flat Screen Hard to See

By Junior Damato, August 3rd, 2019

strong>Dear Doctor: I own a 2012 Camry. When the sun is bright, the radio/navigation screen is impossible to read until I get in shadier spot. It seems the flat screen should be indented into a cabinet or it should have protruding sides to help block light. What can I do? The auto body shop said they often see this problem but there's nothing they can recommend. I haven't seen my radio stations or navigation on a sunny day since I bought this car new. Can you help me? Jean

Manufacturer photo: 2012 Toyota Camry
Manufacturer photo: 2012 Toyota Camry

strong>Dear Jean: You are not alone. My wife had the same complaint on all her Camrys. First, make sure the display is set to either on automatic or daytime. Next, try adjusting the light and contrast settings. An online company called NuShield may be able to help. A small piece of cardboard or plastic cut to fit over the screen can be held on with hook-and-look tape, or even slid into the CD slot (if you have one). Installing windshield tint at the top 6 inches (if legal in your state) can help, and, if equipped with a sunroof, make sure the shade is closed.

strong>Dear Doctor: I own a 2016 Honda Pilot equipped with all-wheel drive. Even though I only drive about 4,000 miles per year I get the oil changed every six months -- and had the brake fluid flushed at the three-year mark. I also change the air and cabin filter annually. I've searched the Honda manual and websites trying to determine when the other services are due to no avail. The Maintenance Minder is supposed to display codes when the services are due and yet the dealer is telling me that the rear differential service is due at the first 15,000 miles and then every 15,000 miles. When is the transmission/transfer fluid due for a change? Is there a list anywhere that identifies when services are due by mileage/time frame? John

strong>Dear John: Your annual driving mileage is very low. Transmission fluid would be four years or 50,000 miles. I agree with the dealer suggestion; changing the differential fluid every 15,000 miles is not a bad thing on Honda AWD vehicles, as this will prevent the clutches in the differential from binding when making tight turns at slow speeds. All maintenance services can be found on the Alldata web site. Do not forget about tire rotation: you should do it yearly.

strong>Dear Doctor: I have a 2017 Lincoln MKZ with one glitch: At times the radio will come on when I shift the transmission into P, D, or R. It happens sporadically. Any thoughts? Don

strong>Dear Don: A transmission selector switch on the transmission affects a lot of electronics in the system, and can shut off the radio when moving the gear selector. This repair should fall under the factory warranty for three years.

strong>Dear Doctor: When I brought my 2013 Ford Escape to the dealer for a tire rotation, they told me the lug nuts were swollen and they couldn't get the socket around the lug nut. They wanted to charge me lot to change them. Have you ever heard of this? Gary

strong>Dear Gary: I see a lot of swollen chrome lug nuts on various vehicle brands. These are often two-piece lug nuts that are subject to rust buildup between the actual lug nut and chrome cover. We replace lug nuts all the time with one-piece chrome aftermarket lug nuts available at most auto parts stores. The average good quality chrome lug nut is only $3.50 - $5.00 each and worth the money.

strong>Dear Doctor: I have a 2002 Nissan Sentra with 130,000 miles. The transmission hesitates when shifting from first to second. When I took it to the dealer to change the fluid, they did not change the filter. The transmission still has this problem. I did check the fluid, and it is a half-quart low. I was thinking of putting in Locus transmission fluid. What are your thoughts? John

strong>Dear John: The transmission filter on some of these older-model vehicles is internal. A shift pressure cable on most of these cars helps control the shifting. Fluid pressure can also be easily checked. There are many possibilities, so I recommend you see a transmission-trained technician, who will check for any fault codes.

Why Does Engine Buck with Cold Weather?


Why Does Engine Buck with Cold Weather?

strong>Dear Doctor: We have a 2008 Chevy Malibu that has developed a cold-weather issue. It starts fine, but when the engine is cold and the outside temperatures are below 50 degrees the engine bucks or lurches when slowing for a stop. Sometimes it stalls, and the colder the weather, the worse the problem. Once the engine warms up, the problem goes away. The car seems to run okay otherwise. There are no trouble codes in the onboard computer. Fran

How to Jump-Start: Use a Battery Jump Box


How to Jump-Start: Use a Battery Jump Box

strong>Dear Doctor: I was asked to jump-start a friend's dead/weak battery from my 2015 Subaru Outback, but I said no, fearing it would damage my own battery. But later I read the owners manual and it indicated it would be okay to do so. What are your thoughts on jump-starting a battery from my own vehicle's battery? Jon

What is Proper Tire Pressure for Cold Weather?


What is Proper Tire Pressure for Cold Weather?

strong>Dear Doctor: I own a 2018 Chevy Cruze equipped with 17-inch aluminum wheels and the Tire Pressure Monitor, which is a great feature. The dealership told me to maintain 35 psi in all four tires, but I have noticed with colder weather now, the tire pressure has dropped off to the low 30s, and not every tire has same reading. Is this to be expected? James

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