Changing the Battery:
Disconnect the negative (-) cable, then the
positive (+) cable.
Using a socket wrench, loosen the hold down
nut that secures the bracket across the top of the battery or the clamp at the
base of the battery; if it is corroded in place, apply penetrating oil to loosen
Remove the nut and lift the bracket out of the
If space allows, reach under the battery with
both hands and lift it out.
Alternatively, lift the battery by gripping it
at its corners, where it is strongest, or use a set of battery straps.
Wash the base and tray with a solution of
baking soda and water before installing the new battery.
Secure the hold down hardware hand-tight; over
tightening can crack the case and under tightening can cause the case to wear
against adjoining hardware.
Alternator Drive Belt:
Testing the belt tension: Check the
condition of drive belts at least once each year. A quick check of the belt can
be made by pressing down with your thumb midway along its longest span. The belt
should have no more than 1 centimeter of play. Obtain a more accurate reading of
the tension of the belt using a tension gauge. If the belt is cracked, brittle
or otherwise damaged, replace it. To adjust the tension of the belt, loosen the
Loosening the adjustment bolt: The
alternator is mounted with two bolts, the adjustment bolt near the top of it and
the pivot bold on its base. Loosen the nut on the adjustment bolt with a socket
wrench, pulling hard on the ratchet and giving it a solid bump with the heel of
your other hand, if necessary. Try to push the alternator against the belt with
your hand or the handle of a tool. If the alternator moves and the belt tenses,
tighten the adjustment bolt. If the alternator does not budge, try loosening the
pivot bolt as well.
Loosening the pivot bolt: Grip the
pivot bolt using a socket wrench and an extension. You may need to use a lot of
force to turn the pivot bolt; if necessary, give a sharp blow against the
ratchet with the heel of your hand to help loosen it. Turn the pivot bolt only
one half turn or until the alternator can be moved using hand pressure.
Tightening the belt: Press against the
alternator with one hand until the belt is taut, then tighten the adjustment
bolt slightly using a socket wrench. Repeat the thumb test to check the tension
of the belt. If the belt is too loose, press harder against the alternator; if
it is too tight, apply less pressure on the alternator. When the tension is
correct, tighten both the adjustment bolt and the pivot bolt securely.
Disconnecting the cable:
Made of nylon
filament and filled with carbon the cable of a spark plug is fragile.
Performance deteriorates quickly if the cable is pulled or twisted, or becomes
wet, dirty or oily. To remove the cable from a spark plug, grasp only the
protective boot and twist it back and forth while pulling it off. With some
engines, you may have to take off the air cleaner to gain access to the spark
Extracting the spark plug: Extract the
spark plug using a spark plug socket - 14mm or 18mm in size, depending on the
specifications given in your owner's manual. Fit the socket onto the spark plug
and turn in until its rubber insert grips the spark plug firmly. Loosen the
spark plug by applying strong pressure with a socket wrench, fitting it with an
extension and universal joint, if necessary. When the spark plug is loosened,
twist it out by hand.
Inserting a new spark plug:
installing a new spark plug, check its gap using a wire gauge and adjust it, if
necessary. Smear the threads of the spark plug with anti-seize compound, then
install it and turn it clockwise with the extension of a socket wrench. When the
spark plug is fully seated, fit the ratchet of the socket wrench on the
extension and tighten the spark plug no more than one quarter turn it it has
a gasket; no more than 1.5 millimeters if it has no gasket. Over tightening the
spark plug can damage the threads of it socket.
Lubricating the spark plug: To protect
the spark plug from corrosion, apply a thin layer of dielectric compound to the
inside of its boot using a stick or an old screwdriver. Push the boot firmly
onto the spark plug until you feel or hear it click over the tip of the spark
plug. Then, spread a drop of silicone sealant where the cable and boot meet to
bock moisture and dirt. If the boot and the cable are molded together, a sealant
is not necessary.
Changing a fuse:
Refer to the cover of the fuse panel or the owner's manual to identify the
circuit protected by each fuse, as well as the amperage (rate of current flow)
through the circuit.
For a flat automotive type fuse, use the
fuse puller provided in the fuse panel or buy a plastic fuse puller. Fit the
fuse puller onto the base of the fuse and pull it out.
For a glass cartridge type (round with a
metal cap at each end), remove it with the fuse puller designed for its
type; do not use your hand. Replace a blown fuse with an
identical fuse of the same amperage rating.
Some circuits are protected by a fusible
link - a short, thin wire soldered to the main wire; if it is blown, its
insulation will look blistered or charred. Have a blown fusible link
Changing a circuit breaker:
To replace a tripped circuit breaker or test
the circuit, pull out the old circuit breaker with your fingers. Push an
identical circuit breaker into the slot of the old one as a replacement. Some
circuit breakers are mounted with nuts to a panel under the hood; remove the
nuts using a small wrench.
(Next) Directing the head light
(Taken from: Time-Life Books Inc. -
Quick Action Guide to CAR CARE)