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Superbob

Santa Cruz, CA

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Question Answered: 

You don't say what kind of noise it is.. If it's due to the brakes being worn out, a little steel wear-warning tab to touches the disc and make a loud noise which could lessen once the car is in motion for a while. if you don't have a wear warning tab on your brake pads (some do, some don't), could be your brakes are worn out anyway. Get this checked right away. It's also possible that nothing is worn out but you have badly glazed or contaminated brake pads and discs. In that case, some hard stops from speed could cure it, or may not help at all. Get your brakes checked for wear first for safety's sake, and if the brakes are not worn out, you may try the hard stop (be prudent - not in traffic or narrow road, etc). FYI: some brake pads are made so hard that they glaze up beyond usefulness before the actual brake material wears off.


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Could be a combination of out-of-balance or out-of-round tires and warped front brake discs. Would then need tire balance and remachine or replace brake rotors and replace brake pads. Could also be that you have loose suspension parts (tie rod ends?) in front end. Could get dangerous in an awkward driving situation. Recommend check this one out right away- out of balance tires are easy & cheap to fix. A front brake job is more but it's worth checking to see while tires are off for balancing. At that time check for loose suspension parts, that could be expensive but not as likely as first suggestions. You have to know for safety's sake.


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Question Answered: 

Could be a combination of out-of-balance or out-of-round tires and warped front brake discs. Would then need tire balance and remachine or replace brake rotors and replace brake pads. Could also be that you have loose suspension parts (tie rod ends?) in front end. Could get dangerous in an awkward driving situation. Recommend check this one out right away- out of balance tires are easy & cheap to fix. A front brake job is more but it's worth checking to see while tires are off for balancing. At that time check for loose suspension parts, that could be expensive but not as likely as first suggestions. You have to know for safety's sake.


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I would, normally. You want both shocks to react the same for good handling, besides, maybe the other one is getting ready to fail too. I'd say, replace both with good quality aftermarket replacements. Often are better performers than originals.


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Question Answered: 

Code P0300 is "Random Misfire." That means that there is misfire affecting random cylinders. If it were only indicating one or more particular cylinders, then the code(s) ould be P0301 for cyl 1, P0302 for cyl 2, etc. If the check engine light is flashing, then that indicates that there is enough misfire to cause the catalytic convertor damage if you continue operate the engine. You need to give more information for meaningful advice.


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Question Answered: 

The filter is built into the fuel pump/gauge unit which is installed into the top of the tank. I suspect water in the tank and the best way to check for this is drop the tank (not real hard to do), remove the pump unit and look inside. If water does get past the filter and get into the fuel injection system you will have real problems so don't take this lightly. I don't know of a "typical" problem in these cars to cause your complaint but it soulds like water in the gas to me. Does the problem resolve itself if you take tha gas cap off? Try it, the cap may be defective allowing vacuum to build in the tank as fuel is used up. If you hear a huge sucking sound when you take the cap off you may have found your problem.


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Question Answered: 

There is no way to replace the water pump on this engine without removing and replacing the timing belt on the process. He is wrong about the "tune-up" etc. If the water pump leaked onto the belt it's now likely to fail and was probably due for replacement anyway by the time the water pump wore out. I would not recommend, based on what you have said, to allow this guy to work on your car at all if he didn't get the timing right and didn't try to get you to buy the complete service which would have included a new timing belt, tensioner and camshaft and crankshaft seals. Any less than the complete job is a risk to you and any mechanic who is liable for damages due to his neglegent work.


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Question Answered: 

If you want to do this legally, you'd want to check with the Smog Referee for the proper requirements, you have to really be ready to jump through some complicated hoops if the engine and body don't match up emissions wise. The engine would have to meet 1988 specs, they did offer a 454 but the emissions specs for your engine in question have to match up with the vehicle or you may have toi modifuy the vehicle. You'll need to see the Smog Referree before you'll get paper and a sticker on it. On modern cars this is usually not worth it but for an '88 it's worth some research. A 454 is more fun than a 350 for sure..


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Your engine and trans are electronically controlled by a computer. If your speed sensort signal (VSS) is not present you should have a check engine (or trans) light on, I'd think. If the signal is simply not correct maybe not. If the check lighjt is on, it has set a trouble code and anyone with a scanner can tell you what the code is. It it's an intermittent failure it still may set a code. A bad VSS would likkely cause the problem you have. Be suspicious of the speed sensor in this case. I think the horn is not related but you should check the fuses, refer to the owner's manual for fuse info. don't try to diagnose any driveability problem if you haven't checked things like th fuses first.


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Question Answered: 

This is a serious problem. My first thought is that there's something stuck in the buckle and therefore it's not really latching fully. I've found a penny or dime or food or other debris in seat belt buckles so it's not necessarily that the buckle's bad but you gotta check this out for sure. I'd remove the buckle from the attachment point and get it on the bench. Sometimes the plastic trim can be removed and the buckle cleaned. Make sure this is ficxed pronto even if it means replaclement buckle new or from a junkyard.


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