, Salem, MA


July 27, 2013

Auto Scanner: How to deal with rusty rotors

Q: I have a 2006 Mustang GT convertible that I bought new. Prior to this year, it was stored inside over the winter. This past winter, I had to store it outside, under a car cover. I noticed this spring the rotors are covered with rust. I’m going to be getting it ready to use again soon. Should I clean the rust off the rotors before I drive it, or should I let the brake pads clean them when I drive it? I hate to grind all the rust into the brake pads and perhaps gouge the rotors, if there is an easy way to clean them; or maybe it doesn’t matter. I would like to know your opinion. Thank you for sharing all your knowledge with me and all the other readers weekly.

A: You are on the right path. I don’t want to see you grind the rust into the pads, either. When you do this, you will shorten the pad life and end up with squeaking brakes. I would like to see the vehicle towed to a quality repair shop that will tear down the brakes, turn the rotors, service the bearings and install fresh wheel seals.

Q: What is the timing belt service for a 2007 Acura TL, 3.2-liter, six-cylinder engine that currently has 97,000 miles on it?

A: The manufacturer’s recommendation is 105,000 miles or 84 months. Of course, you should realize that the water pump and drive belts should be replaced at the same time. And whenever I put in a water pump, I give the entire cooling system a flush.

Q: I own a 2000 Toyoto Avalon XLS. About six months ago, when I was filling my gas tank, the pump kept shutting off as if the tank was full. I would have to fill a little at a time and keep checking with the gas gauge. I asked people in the gas station, and they just said they had no idea. I hope you have an answer for me. I have about 88,000 miles and the car runs great.

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