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Car MechanicsCar Mechanics

Car Mechanics May 2019

Car Mechanics is the UK's only car magazine with essential advice on maintaining and repairing popular makes and models. It’s an invaluable motoring resource that appeals to both the DIY car enthusiast and the more experienced motor trade professional. Car Mechanics has helped save money for our readers every month since 1958. Each issue includes a wide range of in-depth features written in a clear, straightforward manner: • Readers’ motoring-related problems answered for FREE • Real-life motoring dilemmas from our man in the garage trade • Electronic diagnostics delves inside a different modern vehicle each month to explain its management system • Survival Guide looks at new and used component prices for a particular vehicle • Used Car Focus is an in-depth buying guide on a specific make and model • Service Bay covers a full service with close-up images and comprehensive descriptions • Project cars are a major part of the structure of the magazine as we buy, fix and sell different vehicles over a period of months So if you're into saving money and being a home technician, Car Mechanics will help you out - guaranteed!

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car mechanics

EDITORIAL Phone 01733 468000 Editor Martyn Knowles Production Editor David Taylor Technical Editor Steve Rothwell Editorial Assistant Leise Enright CONTRIBUTORS > Craig Cheetham > Richard Gunn > Mike Humble > Chris Randall > Ian Cushway > Rob Hawkins > Rob Marshall > John Ward > Andrew Everett > Kim Henson > Jack Moore > Steven Ward ADVERTISING Phone 01733 468864 Group Commercial Director Nicky Holt Commercial Director Kelly Millis Key Accounts Alice Sumner-Andrews Account Manager Claire Meade-Gore MARKETING Phone 01733 468000 Marketing Manager Rachael Beesley Marketing Executive Chanel Brown Digital Marketing Assistant Lewis Plumb Direct Marketing Manager Julie Spires Direct Marketing Executive Amy Dedman Head of Newstrade Marketing Leon Benoiton Newstrade Marketing Manager Joe Deboo PRODUCTION Phone 01733 468341 Print Production Manager Richard Woolley Advertising Production Zoe Bellamy Printed by Wyndeham Group Distributed by Frontline H BAUER PUBLISHING Managing Director/Consumer Cars Niall Clarkson Editorial Director June Smith-Sheppard Head of Digital Charlie Calton-Watson Finance Director Lisa Hayden Group Finance Director Sarah Vickery Group Managing Director Rob Munro-Hall CEO Paul Keenan…

ultra low emissions

As I write this, it’s the first operating day of the Transport for London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), so our feature on alternative fuels, starting on page 6 is particularly topical. The ULEZ functions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, in the same zone the congestion charge currently operates in London. It’s operated by CCTV and is designed to extract money from your pocket if your vehicle doesn’t meet the official emissions criteria. I’m all for cleaning up the air and most manufacturers have strived to make engines cleaner. Think back to the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, when carburettors were controlling fuelling you could definitely smell the richness from the exhaust – and taste it, in some instances! However, with higher Government targets restricting the…

repair blunders

Car Mechanics reader Martin Rubenstein has asked me if we’d ever considered a section in CM where readers can write in about repair blunders they’ve made over the years. I said that it sounded like a good idea and, as he’d thought of it, he must have one or two sorry stories to kick-off the feature. Martin didn’t disappoint. However, we will need more tales from you to make this a regular feature, so don’t be embarrassed – send your confessions to me, with a handful of pictures if possible. For me, I recently fitted a new 12V battery in a VW Beetle. I took my time and all went well... until I found the battery protection cover lying on the garage floor afterwards. So I had to do the job all…

join cm at the national kit car show at stoneleigh

I have mentioned before that we have been buying a number of cars for a forthcoming feature in CM. Well, I can now reveal that, in our July 2019 issue, we will be printing a major feature on running bangers – or, as ‘bangers’ sounds a bit crude, let’s call them ‘cheap forms of motoring’. The criteria for the feature is whether you can buy and own sub-£1000 cars on a budget. We will highlight how to buy a decent car for very little money, plus how to keep it on the road without bankrupting you. First, of course, we needed some cars. To make it a fair comparision between them, we decided we’d stick with 2.0-litre petrol units. We placed bids at a number of auctions to find three cheap cars:…

exploring alternative fuels

It may be an uncomfortable fact to the hardened environmentalist but it is fair to say that most drivers could not give two hoots about what comes out of their car’s tailpipe… until it hits their pockets. The ill-advised political move to tax cars on their CO2 emissions was a major reason for a surge in sales of diesel vehicles and the subsequent fiddling of official anti-pollution tests by car manufacturers, many of which were too scared to admit to legislators that the mandatory pollution targets were unachievable. The situation was not helped by unscrupulous garages and DIYers opting to remove anti-pollution equipment instead of repairing it, just to save a few quid. Now, the political tide is turning. Fuel prices are rising again, emissions regulations are being tightened and low…

diy biodiesel case study

Ted Dowdeswell, Leamington Spa CM has written about the benefits of homemade biodiesel in previous years. Since then, the excise duty cut for biofuels and waste vegetable oil used as road fuels has been removed and the rates are the same as those for hydrocarbon fuels. Nevertheless, savings can still be made. HM Revenues & Customs (HMRC) did not confirm to CM that there had been any changes to rulings that you do not have to register with them, or pay any duty, if you produce less than 2500 litres per year for your personal use. However, you must keep records as evidence for six years. Consider also that newer diesel engines that employ common-rail high-pressure injection systems are less tolerant of variable fuel quality and any breakdown can wipe out…