, Salem, MA


January 11, 2014

Auto Scanner: Can you still push-start a car with dead battery?

Q: In the good old days when you had a dead battery, all you needed was a few friends to push or a slight incline. Once you got some speed, you popped the clutch and the engine caught. I assume this still works with a manual transmission. Then came the automatic transmissions, and you “had to get up to 35 mph” before the engine would catch. This led to one of the great hoaxes with the man stranded on the Merritt Parkway waiting for the volunteer to start pushing when he noticed the car in his rear-view mirror approaching at 35 mph. Now I’ve heard that they took the “reverse turbine” out of the automatics. So the question: can you start the new cars by pushing them and shifting into gear — either standard automatics or the CVTs?

A: You can still push-start a standard transmission car. However, you are correct concerning the automatic being push-started. I have to wonder if the standard transmission is indeed going away, as well. The number of cars we service with standard transmissions has dwindled tremendously. Imagine a driving world where people see the standard transmission the same way we see the tuner on the television — antiquated and not needed. Everything has become electronic, and the need for driver input and skills is diminishing with every new model year. We already have “park itself” and automatic “avoid the wreck”; “drive itself” is in the experimental stage. I would be interested in reader input on the way you feel about the previously stated updates to the automobile.

Q: I have a 2010 RAV4 and I was out yesterday in the snow. I turned onto my street and fishtailed and a loud beep went off, which lasted about five seconds. I know there was a recall on this model just recently, and I did bring it in to have it fixed. Do you have any idea what might have caused this beeping noise, or is it just part of the alert system?

Text Only | Photo Reprints

AP Video
Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best AP Review: Amazon Fire Adds Spark to Smartphones All Aboard! LIRR Strike Averted Microsoft to Cut Up to 18,000 Jobs Time Warner Rejects Murdoch's Takeover Bid Yellen Says Economy Still Needs Fed Support Cleveland Expects Economic Boom From Lebron Justice Dept. Fines Citigroup $7 Billion Justice Dept. Fines Citigroup $7 Billion Downside of Low Mortgage Rates? Less Selling Cupcake Shop Crumbs Shuttering All Its Stores San Francisco Prepares for Soda Battle Dow Breaks Record 17,000 GM Crash Compensation Could Top $1 Billion GM Won't Limit Crash Compensation Funds Justices Rule for Broadcasters in Aereo Fight
NDN Video
Facebook Is Officially A Mobile Company 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl Swim Daily, Nina Agdal in the Cook Islands Guilty Dog Apologizes to Baby for Stealing Her Toy Prince George Turns 1 and is Already a Trendsetter
Comments Trcker