My car has been creaky lately, really creaky, so along with my milage woes, I’ve started tackling issues.
First I checked the tire pressure and it was low, around 28psi. Increased to 34.
Next, I took the car up to Mike at SHO Parts NW who did wonderfully on the cam sprocket welding. In the process of checking out the squeak, we noticed the positive battery terminal was corroded badly. He spent about 30-40 mins cleaning that poor thing – It even copper coated his tools, but we got the car starting again. That lead to a new battery today at Sears, which I would suggest because they looked up my current battery which I got from them 50 months ago and gave me $38 back. Now the car cranks instantly – Diehard Gold seems like a winner.
Anyway, Mike took off the left wheel and after some tests decided it was the tie rod end. He popped off the tie rod and yep, the aluminum shaft was grinding inside the aluminum bushing, which it should not even be moving. He worked the tie rod end around, loosening it up, and put it all back together. The noise was better, but still there, so we did the right side and it was worse.
Now, the car is quiet again and next weekend we’ll be putting brand new tie rod ends on, as well as changing all four O2 sensors (they are factory original still) and getting an alignment done.
Between the O2 sensors and tire pressure, I should see some improvement in mileage.