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Car MechanicsCar Mechanics

Car Mechanics November 2018

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!

United Kingdom
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see the light

Vehicle lighting has advanced in leaps and bounds over the past two decades. Modern plastic-housed units have transformed the front-end design of many a basic hatchback. However, I’ve always thought that sidelights of any vehicle were pretty much useless. With many cars now fitted with automatic lighting controls – which switch on when daylight diminishes, operating straight to dipped beam – as well as daytime running lights (DRLs) on all newly type-approved UK models from 2011, what point is served by the little 5W sidelight bulbs?Of course, DRLs have been around for a while. Volvos and some Saabs started fitting 21W bulbs in the sidelight housing to be powered permanently. Remember those late-1970s Volvos we kept flashing our lights at thinking they had left the sidelights switched on?Despite my…

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10th anniversary

▶ Time seems to go so fast these days. Would you believe I’ve been editor of CM for 10 years this issue? ? A decade of enjoying myself immensely! My first issue as editor (pictured right) involved me and my Skoda Octavia (still in my ownership) and brewing biodiesel at home – did anyone have a go at this?Of course, prior to that I’d been designing CM since 1992, which means the magazine has been a part of my life for 26 years. It isn’t often you get to work on a magazine that you really enjoy reading (again) once the printed copy lands on the doorstep. And I’m happy that other like-minded readers enjoy it too, so thank you for your support over the years. What keeps me…

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mike humble

Mr Humble is often to be found fixing motors on his driveway – more often than not, a Rover of some sort! This issue we e introduce our new regular columnist: Mike Humble (seen in a rather grubby state, right). Mike will need little introduction ion to readers – his s last article, about a bespoke 1932 Cummins-powered replica, was in our 60th anniversary issue. Mike will be the first to say that he has big boots to fill after the three decades of Ted Connolly’s column.Mike has a 30-year history in the motor trade and will be giving us lots of insight into his past, present and future dealings with the trade, including some comical misadventures along the way. Mike tells me his career started at the…

access_time14 min.
let there be light

The replacement headlight bulbs market, in particular, offers great scope for improvements. But buy carefully – make the wrong choice and you could make your car unsafe and illegal. Headlights have evolved considerably. Pictured are performance comparisons of a 1908 Ford Model T’s gas headlamps against a Ford Anglia 105e’s filament dipped beam and the HID Xenon of a 2016 Ford Mustang. Light and dark are fundamental to human psychology and physiology. In nature, we have evolved to function during daylight and produce the hormone, melatonin, to promote sleep at night. Producing artificial light has also been essential to our survival, cementing a link between light and safety.Yet, where ancient civilisations would struggle to keep a fire lit (the latest rash of reality television programmes highlight how…

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technical glossary

Lumen Total light output per second. The measurement tends to be used for bulbs. Lux The intensity of light, measured as 1 lumen over 1 square metre. This measurement tends to be used by lamp designers. Colour The temperature at which a black body, when heated, emits a certain colour, measured in Kelvin (K). At the lower end is red, with blue at the upper scale. Expected colour temperatures are: ▶ Standard H7 (Halogen) 2500K ▶ Ring Xenon 150 Upgrade H7 3700K ▶ Ring Xenon5000 Styling Upgrade H7 5000K ▶ HID Xenon from 4200-5500K (upgraded HID burners are towards the upper end of this scale) ▶ LED DRL 6000K ▶ Natural daylight 6200K ■…

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rob’s top tip

All electrical wiring must be secure as it is an MOT requirement. Any aftermarket lamps (including DRL kits) must be E-marked. DRLs should be positioned symmetrically and in pairs, the same height from the road and the same distance from the sides of the vehicle. Bulb life is not included in Type Approval requirements – quality bulbs will have their lifetimes assessed by the maker. Wear gloves so you do not touch the bulb glass with bare skin. The grease left behind can carbonise, shortening the life of the bulb and damaging the headlamp reflector. ■…