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Technical Guides

This section will cover everything you wanted to know how things work on cars but were afraid to ask, well be afraid no longer as it's explained here. The articles will cover aspects of the engine, gearbox, oil, brakes, pads, suspension, electronics, anything technical background. Most if not all the guides are also available in downloadable formats, such as Acrobat Reader format (printing) or the guide itself compressed (zipped) for downloading for later reading. You will need the following programs as shown on the left to be able to view or use them. Please pick from the list below.


  Knock Sensor Explained - Rev 3 [Jan 2003] To the top

CTS Explained

Technical information on what the Knock Sensor (KS) does on the car and how it works. A faulty KS can lead to poor performance and bad engine running.


  Coolant Temperature Sensor Explained - Rev 2 [Dec 2002] To the top

CTS Explained

Technical information on what the Coolant Temperature Sensor (CTS) does on the car and how it works. A faulty CTS can lead to poor or no idling at all!


  Porous Heads Explained - Rev 2 [March 2002] To the top

Porous Heads Explained

The cylinder head of the engine has small thin veins cast inside which caries water (the coolant) and the oil. Unfortunately some heads were found to be porous were these two liquids mixed. This means an engine rebuild. Some engines in the Astra, Cavalier and Calibra had these faulty heads. Read this guide to find out if yours is affected too!


  Car Batteries Explained - Rev 2 [Feb 2002] To the top

Car Batteries Explained

The car battery is a storage device, which stores energy. But how does it work and how do you take care of it? Plus what do you look for when buying another one and how to jump start the car if it goes dead. All is explained in this guide.


  Idle Speed Control Valve (ISCV) Explained - Rev 1 [Jan 2002] To the top

Idle Speed Control Valve Explained

The idle speed control valve (ISCV) are fitted to EMU controlled cars which automatically adjust and control the idle speed of your car. This article explains how it works and how to recognise what type is fitted to your car.


  Crank Sensor Explained - Rev 2 [May 2002] To the top

Crank Sensor Explained

A Crank Sensor (also known as a Crank Angle Sensor - or CAS for short) watch's the position of the camshaft and its relationship with the piston position inside the engine. Without it, the engine will not run at its optimum, and if faulty, the ECU warning light shall illuminate on the dash.


  RON Code Plugs Explained - Rev 1 [Dec 2001] To the top

RON Coding Plugs Explained

A RON plug stands for "Research Octane Number" or also known as Octane Rating Plugs. These were introduced in 1987 on engines with fixed ignition distributors. But what are these for? By changing their value you may be able to improve fuelling and hence performance of your car for very little money.


  ABS Fault Codes Explained - Rev 1 [Dec 2001] To the top

ABS Fault Codes Explained

The little ABS warning light on your dash has lit up ! What does it mean? Does it mean an expensive repair or a simple squirt of WD40 on one of the connectors in the car? Read this article to find out how to read the ABS fault codes to do a bit of DIY diagnostics.


  Engine Codes Explained - Rev 2 [Nov 2001] To the top

Engine Codes Explained

So what have you got? A C20LET, X20XEV or a E16SE engine? Haven't got a clue what I'm on about? Well read the engine code article which explains what those letters and numbers mean.


  New Number Plates Explained - Rev 1 [Nov 2001] To the top

New number plate format explained

Starting from the 1st September 2001, a new number plate format will be introduced. Here it is expalined what it means to you and what does the new numbers and letters mean.


  Reading ECU Fault Codes - Rev 6 [Dec 2001] To the top

Reading ECU Fault Codes

Is your engine injection fueled? Then it needs an ECU to do this and hence it is capable on storing ECU fault codes. If the ECU warning light comes on then you can read the fault code with a paper clip and find out what the problem is.


  Oxygen/Lambda Sensor - Rev 1 [May 2001] To the top

Oxygen/Lambda Sensor

Don't know what one of these are? Well if you have an injection engine with a CAT, then this sensor is very important for the performance for your car. Without it, damage may come to the CAT which will cost you money.


  4 Star Ban - Rev 1 To the top

4 star ban

Learn if your car can no longer run on 4 star petrol when it gets pahsed out. Most Vauxhall cars engines will be OK apart from the very old models.


  Wheel Offset Explained - Rev 2 To the top

Wheel offset

Don't know what the 'offset' is of your car. Well you may need to learn this if you plan to get bigger wheels for your car. All is explained here.


  Wheels & Tyres Explained - Rev 1 To the top

4 star ban

Not sure on what 'aspect ratio' tyre to get and what the hell is a 'speed rating' for your tyre. Read this guide to tel you the basic's of tyre buying.


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